Pipe Dreams

Water Pipe


“At the bottom of the field, James, is all that’s left of my first house. I know it’s just an old drainage pipe, but to me it’s a bitter reminder me of what used to be. Those houses had stood for a hundred years – they knew how to build them in those days. None of your modern conveniences, but I guess you can’t have everything. For years, I remember watching kids playing on the streets around here. They didn’t have much, but I’m sure they were all happy. I knew them – they were my people.

“It wasn’t just a house they tore down. It was a somebody’s home. Until the compulsory purchase order took it away. All in the name of progress.

“They said these terrace streets were overcrowded and unsanitary. So what! No one cared when I was brought up in one, we just had to manage. Now it’s all ‘Nanny State’, with your Health and Safety regulations to punish entrepreneurs like me. Overcrowding? I provided these people with a roof above their heads! Of course I got compensation for all of my houses that they bulldozed, but what about my future profits?

“I’m well out of it. They’re pushing honest businessmen like me away, with their ‘affordable housing’. If it wasn’t for my offshore accounts, I’d be down to my last Bentley! Take me home, James.”


This story is inspired by the photo supplied by Al Forbes of Sunday Photo Fiction, April 10th, 2016.  For more details click the logo.


To view other stories written for this challenge, please click here.

12 thoughts on “Pipe Dreams

  1. We often see the twist at the end of the tale in your writing, but this was a particularly good one. Well done.

    • Thanks, Helen. I use the twist as a device to make an impact, which is not always easy in this format. I always try and put some hints in the beginning, particularly as some people like to go back and re-read them!

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