Carlton Place has always struck me as eery. Maybe it's the cobbled, lamp-lit Victorianess of the block, kinda Spring-heeled Jack-ish. Maybe it's cos there never seems to be anyone about.
I used to call on a firm who operated out of a basement there. Never saw a living soul, in the middle of the day yet!
It's so quiet for the town centre, too quiet...half the doors have no nameplates...makes me wonder what's going on...Wooo!
So the place has always spooked me. But in my case there is something else...maybe, just maybe, it's this...
There used to be a restaurant there called the Trading Post (I think).
The gimmick was you grilled your own steak at a bar-B-Q specially provided. Never liked that idea myself, why can't they cook the effin' steak? It's not as tho you got money off for cooking yer own tea.
We went with a party from work, including the cleaner, a wee wumin who hadn't been with us all that long. After we'd eaten we decided we'd all "go on". As Bill Knox used to say on the Police Reports, drink had been taken. The night was foggy...we all went over the suspension bridge...the cleaner was there when we started...she wasn't there at the end. We never saw her again.
Now it's possible that she'd had her tea and we had just given her a wee Xmas bonus so she's thought fuck 'em I'm off homeo. It's possible that she didn't come back to work after Xmas cos she found a better job.
You would think that if something had happened to her someone would of got in touch to ask where we'd left her.
All these years later, I've never known. Just last month I met the guy that used to be my business partner in these days, I hadn't seen him in 8 years. We were in the Chip drinking when he said, appro pos of nothing, "do you ever think about the cleaner?"
"Now and again," I said, "now and again..."
Alter Aterius Auxilio Veget