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Dudu (David) the puncturemacher.

Thousands of kilometres and I’d never had a puncture, thanks to Eli. He’d checked my tyres for donkeys years.

One day his mother died. She was a big lady, big bosom and a fat friendly nose, forever tapping an adding machine, taking money and writing receipts.

Ensconced in a heavily padded, comfortable looking office chair inside a glass compartment at the back of the warehouse, a white parrot squawked in a cage by her side. Now and and again he’d nibble a tit bit held between her fingers. She’d say pretty polly and good morning and he’d repeat her words.

Parrots in big white cages and tyres arranged according to size were scattered all around. A regular bird and tyre paradise.

I pulled in and to my surprise a gaunt looking gent checked the tyres. Eli was nowhere to be seen. “I’m Dudu”, the guy announced.

During their mother’s lifetime Eli worked with her while Dudu ran another place somewhere far away. They had quarreled during the old lady’s lifetime. Now fulfilling her dying wish, they made up and Dudu joined Eli, but they kept out of each other’s way.

“The tyre’s good for another month, I’ll just put a patch on”. “Eli would have advised putting on a new tyre”, I thought.

Now, less than two weeks later I found myself cringing at the sight of our beautiful Prius leaning, lopsidedly in the oppressively hot dimly lit parking garage in Beeri Str. “That damned Dudu, he should have put on a new tyre, thanks to his stupidity our pleasant day out with our friends was ruined.

All had gone so well, the glass of dry red wine, we’d toasted the health of Shimon and Carmela, the lightly spiced eggplant salad, the delicious white locus. Everything had been perfect and now also our plan to visit my grandkids on our way home was spoilt, all because of Dudu. If only he had put on a new tyre this wouldn’t have happened.

On my haunches, sweat soaking the elegant blue shirt and matching shorts I’d put on specially for the visit to our friends, I lifted the car, then started loosening the bolts. The jack gave way.

Wordlessly I fumed at the puncture fixer of last week, the idio, wait until I get my hands on him….

“Also why hadn’t someone told me to loosen bolts before lifting the car. Everyone was to blame, not me.

Second try, the wheel came off. Huffing, puffing and sweating, Finally we limped home, on the spare I’d spent an hour and spitting blood putting on.

Etti called and Eli promised to deal with the new repair, but when we arrived, there was Dudu. Stamping towards him I poured out my wrath. He returned my fire and pointed to a mark he’d made on the tyre he’d repaired two weeks ago.

It was the left rear and the problem this time was the left front. Once again my anger had been misdirected.

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