This week at the Carrot Ranch, Charli Mills challenged writers to In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story using the saying, “not my monkeys, not my circus”. What is the situation that would spawn that aphorism? Have fun with setting and characters! Go where the prompt leads!
This saying was unfamiliar to me, as it was for many of the other writers. It means that it’s not my business, not my responsibility.
For my response, I’ve drawn upon the mountains of lost property that are collected during the school year, items for which children didn’t take responsibility at the time and may not always recognise as theirs when it comes time to claim them.
At the last school I was at, we had one lovely mother who would collect all the items, take them home and wash them, bag those that were named and return them to the owners, and make the others available for collection. She was an angel, and many parents were indebted to her for this very generous and money-saving service. Unclaimed items may have been used as ‘spares’ or sold as second-hand in the uniform shop.
My story is entirely fiction. I hope you enjoy it.
Not My Monkeys. Not My Circus.
Students, instructed to reclaim missing items, trooped past tables overflowing with lost property. Anything not claimed would be discarded.
Henry couldn’t remember what he had to find.
“Not my hat. Not my jacket,” he said. “Not my shoe, not my sock. Not my undies. Pee-ew! Not my lunchbox. Not my water bottle. Not my monkeys. Not my circus.”
“Wait. Monkeys? Circus?”
Henry took the Barrel of Monkeys and the painting.
“Look,” said one helper, amused. “Henry’s mum told him to find three hats, two pairs of shoes and a jacket.”
“Not my monkey. Not my circus,” said the other.
Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. Please share your thoughts.
Note: The collection of stories made in response to the previous prompt Oh My! including mine, will be available to read at the Carrot Ranch as soon as the WordPress Happiness Engineers work out a technical glitch for Charli. (Good luck, Charli!)