It was in the evening on the eve of the election, when my photographic colleague No.113b and myself found ourselves walking along the sea wall well past the fringes of the Village. Going the other way was No.58 behind the wheel of a taxi, I tried to flag her down after being caught in the beam of the vehicles headlights. But No.58 simply drove on her way back towards the Village.
So where had No.58 been? I was eager to discover what it was that had seen her drive out here past the outskirts of the Village so late in the evening.
Walking on, No.113b and I suddenly became aware of voices, voices which emanated from the mouth of a half concealed cave. Slowly and quietly we approached the mouth of the cave, No.113b ready with his camera, and I keen for a story, walked into the depths of the cave, and found what we learned to be, the "Therapy Zone!" Much to our astonishment there was No.6 and No.2 drinking alcoholic hooch, brewed by some scientist whom the village administrators allow, according to No.2, him to brew his brew, play with his chalk, they come down once a week and photograph his scientific diagrams on the blackboard. Then clean it up so he can do some more!
I asked No.2 the reason behind the Therapy Zone. "Well, if you want to be an alcoholic, you can be one here in perfect privacy, just as long as you return to the flock in good time. Don't worry, there's no surveillance here!" Is that why you felt safe in giving the toast you gave, I asked No.2? What, what toast was that? he asked. The one you gave, and I quote "To hell with the village!"
"Oh, you heard." Plainly No.2 was drunk otherwise such a statesman would not give such a toast. The drink was talking, that was all. But then if anyone else had heard, No.2 might have been denounced for this utterance.
So here was No.2 breaking the village's rule of prohibition, what have you to say for yourself that our readers will want to hear? "A little drop now and again, helps keep the nerves steady!" And No.6 what is your excuse for being here? "I, I wanted a drink, a real drink!"
It appears to me and my photographic colleague that you're both a pair of raving alcoholics! "Yes, here but tomorrow we'll be back in the fold in good time. Don't you see? " And him?" I asked indicating the brewer working at his still. "He brews his brew....." No.2 informed me. And no doubt supplies the Cat & Mouse nightclub. No.2 was about to protest, I held up a hand "There can be no mitigation No.2, as I've already had a taste of the fizzy pop!" "Ah" was No.2's response "Alco-pops!" I asked No.2 what he meant. "Alco-pops, pop with added alcohol. It's a little experiment that our friend here has been experimenting with." And the village's prohibition rule?" "To hell with it!" was No.2's statement and final toast of the evening.
What the citizens of this our fine community will think of their out going No.2 will remain to be seen. as for my photographic colleague and I, well it is unwise for any journalist worth his salt not to test any evidence for its worth. And so after several Alco-pops it was in the early hours of election day, when the four of us staggered on our way back along the sea wall to our beds.
Our own reporter
Photographs by No.113b