As you may know I am currently off work recuperating from a hysterectomy. Whilst unfortunately it does mean I’m never again allowed to clean, iron or unload the dishwasher (at least I’m sure that’s what the doctor told me) It does mean that at the moment I have a ridiculous amount of time on my hands. This has allowed for rather a lot of people watching out my front window and being on a relatively new street I’m still trying to figure out the dynamics.
Currently it seems to me that everyone is related to someone else on the street. There is Mr Emmerdale Extra from up the street who wanders around in welly boots, all he’s missing is the brace of pheasants over his arm. He is doing the garden for the couple over the road, who are an elderly couple I’ve rarely seen. I have however noticed a lot more activity over the road these past couple of weeks and even Mr Van Man has recently started visiting them which seems to be a new occurrence.
Despite not having been able to observe them up close from what I have seen the couple over the road are a bit strange. The number of parcels they get is what first alerted me to the suspicious behaviour. Originally we suspected them of being drug dealers, after all if I were a drug lord I think I’d recruit retired people to traffic for me, loads of time of their hands and no one would suspect them. A drugs empire would also explain the ridiculous amount of traffic that goes up and down the street at 3am as well as the large number of visitors they get during the day. However I am starting to think the whole thing is even more sinister and that actually our street is home to the new branch of Stepford Wives UK.
I have recently re-read the book the Stepford Wives by Ira Levin and it all fell into place. In case there are people who haven’t heard of this book before (or not watched the film which I think I may have done a while ago) it was written in 1972. The main character Joanna is a photographer who moves with her family to Stepford, a town where all the women seem to be the perfect housewife with their only role to keep house and keep their husbands happy. Joanna begins to think that there is something rather sinister going on and suspects the men of the town are swopping the women for robots in order to have complete obedience.
It all seems to fit with my observations and I have Mr Stepford over the road pegged as the ring leader who only brings out his wife as a marketing tool. You rarely see women on the street unless they are taking their grandchildren to school, or cleaning their windows. Mrs Van Man is never seen except when she opens the door to the daily tesco delivery. We assumed that both our neighbours Howard 1 and Howard 2 actually live on their own, yet Mr Stepford has recently visited both men, so maybe they do have wives inside and this week was their annual maintenance inspection.
Just as in the book everyone starts off being all friendly and innocent but the truth always comes out. If I suddenly spot Mr F getting pally with Mr Stepford I may start to worry. At least now my suspicions are aired if you suddenly find me cleaning windows you know it’s too late, especially as I’m not allowed to that ever again either!