“Mrs. me buying the matriyal now. You taking me car, yes? Is grout is tile is plaster is heavy.”
-Matriyal? Oh material. You need it now for the wall you mean? Yeah, I’ll take you. Come on, I’m driving past that shop anyway.
“Is very good you drive.”
-Ha, is very slow you mean. You drive?
“No Mrs. me no paperwork for drive.”
-Hmm, you paperwork for work though, Jan, yeah? I don’t fancy going to jail for employing your ass. Even if you were recommended by my cousin.
“No understand. Very fast you talk. Why laughing, Mrs?”
-Never mind, Jan. You’re very funny.
“Yes, me wife say all time you funny, you funny.”
-Ah does she? You have kids?
“Yeah me two, girls. But is sad story.”
-Oh dear, sorry to hear it Jan.
“You want hear story?”
-No, no, I meant…
“Okay me tell you. Me living in Hungary, wife two girls. Me sending here England for better life. Me saying is better you go then me come. Me coming one year later she going Scotland with new boyfriend and taking me girls.”
-Shit. I’m so sorry to hear that.
“Is hard you know. Me staying here no job, no house. In Hungary me famous builder in England me nothing.”
-Sounds about right. You have to start from below 0 here. So what did you do?
“Mrs. me doing car wash job is £4 one hour.”
-What? That’s not even minimum wage!
“Is hard because me zero English no can do any other job, car wash is no talking Mrs. just you wash.”
-Hey now, your English is… not zero.”
“I know! Me English is now is very good. Me saying two years ago is zero. Why you laugh again Mrs.?”
-Your English is very good in that case Jan. Teaching it yourself in two years is amazing. Good for you. So how did you become a builder again?
“Me washing car one day of big man. Me hear him talking on phone bout matriyal for skim wall me see picture of wall with him . Me say this no good. First fix wall from inside then get different matriyal me give him name of good brand.”
-And by big man I’m guessing you mean….
“Yes is your cousin Mrs. very good man. He tell me how you know this? Me say me very good builder Mr. he say ok come you work for me. Stop car here please. Is parking next to shop. Let’s go. You got money yes?”
-Yeah I have money, what happened after that then?
“Then he gives me jobs and me leaving car wash. Then me save money £500 and me buying two machines and starting work alone. Now me got 10 mens working for me. Is finish story. What tile you want Mrs? This one or this one?”
-You choose the tile. But, wow.
“Why is wow?”
-Because that’s the most inspiring thing I have heard in a while, Jan. Well done you. Life screwed you over and you bounced back. Sorry about your wife though. I’m sure you will find someone else.”
“Oh me already find someone Mrs.”
-What? It’s not even been two years. No heartbreak? No pining for her loss?”
“Hahahahaha. Why is heartbreak Mrs? Someone is leave you one time is better you leave them ten times, yes?”
-Ah, inspiring but very much still a man.
“Is no understand.”
-Just choose the bloody tiles, Jan.