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A Basketful of Snowflakes by Peter Kerr

By Peter Kerr

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His selfcongratulatory giggle and look of anticipated approval met with an awkward silence from Ellie and me, and a glare from Sandy that would have stopped a fighting bull in its tracks. 61 A BASKETFUL OF SNOWFLAKES It certainly wiped the grin off Charlie’s face. While it was obvious that his wisecrack had been blurted out without thinking, and was merely a bit of non-malicious showing off, it had clearly touched a sensitive point as far as Sandy was concerned. At that moment, however, we could only assume that Sandy had taken exception to Charlie’s remark because, inevitably, he’d found it impossible to forge relationships with young people of his own age in a rural location where none existed any more.

As they’d insisted that they’d be picking up the tab, we hadn’t been too concerned about noting the menu prices when ordering, but the general ambience of the place had suggested that the cost of eating there would be on the expensive side of average for Mallorca. As it turned out, the quality of the food added weight to the assumption. More modest in scale than many Mallorcan senyoríus, partcularly those bulky, fortified examples high in the Tramuntanas that were built both to afford shelter from the harsh winter weather of the mountains and to provide protection from marauding bandits in olden times, the façade of the Restaurante Sa Masía has an unmistakably welcoming appearance to it.

If I picked less oranges than you, it’s only cos you’d started before I got home from school. ’ ‘Not out of my share, you don’t! Who do you think does the work around here on all those weekends you’re away poncing about on luxury yachts and things with your millionaire chums? Nah, get lost, Charlie. ’ These little feuds between the boys were becoming more frequent. Maybe it was just sibling rivalry. Brothers will be brothers, after all. Yet I could see Sandy’s point, in as much 44 MONEY DOESN’T GROW ON TREES as working on the farm was his job and his means of earning a wage, meagre though it was.

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