Maybe she’s watched Rocky Horror too many times, or maybe she was just bored – my mother has made a man. He’s the tall, dark, silent type, and we think he’ll make an excellent car buddy. He’s also surprisingly cuddly, and if you arrange his arms properly you get a bit of a huggy feeling back.
Alex visited her gran the other day and fell in love with Luigi, so my mother put the final touches to him (moustache trim and a plunger handle up his neck for easy rotation) and I undertook to deliver him to the restaurant at the V&A Waterfront where we were to celebrate Alex’s 22nd birthday the next day.
When I got home, I left Luigi lying on the upper level of the boot (it’s an SUV), instead of carting him inside and then again outside the next day. And it wasn’t like I was going to give him supper anyway.
Ready to leave for the birthday lunch, I am walking to my car, when Dawn and Harold (my neighbours, 79 and 91 years old) come along and greet me, and tell me how much they like my car. Yes, I say, opening the boot at the same time, it’s great, it’s got so much room for carting things around, and with that Luigi lurches sideways off the boot shelf, collapses out and slumps in a heap at our feet, his head going one way and torso the other. It was a surprisingly realistic effect, especially if you’re not expecting it. Dawn screamed, Harold staggered backwards clutching his heart, and even I – having forgotten about Luigi altogether – got one of the biggest frights of my life.
Luigi is now in Alex’s care. My guess is that he’s going to have many exciting adventures and some good stories to tell one day.