A DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILY

Paul Malik the handsome Arab, inherited the laundry business from his father who came to live in England in 1948 and started life in Liverpool, He buys his first shop with six old washing machines when he moves to the Arab and Jewish community in Benwell in Newcastle. He notices how the community struggle to wash clothes by hand and sets about opening a laundrette. Des Baldwin, the racial bigot does not like Paul or any other black man or woman for that matter. He works in a garage on waterville road and does fiddle work on the side. There is a knock on his door one evening and a bony faced man in a suit asks if he will repair a friends car. the 1968 Jaguar belongs to Darren Ingles a notorious gangster from the West End of Newcastle. The car has been used in a robbery and has been damaged. Read how Des' gets involved with the mob. The story is set in 1971 and will take you to Manchester, and Tenerife and the Canary islands. This is a story of drug trafficking, Dealing and murder.

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Right then are we all ready asked Jenny as they all went down the passage.’

“Do you know anything about washing machines Des?’

“I can fix anything mechanical.’

“That is good to know because I can put a lot of work your way.’

I guess the work slackens off in the winter months does it not.’

“Yes as it happens it does.’

“Well you could repair my father’s industrial washing machines that are all indoors.

“You would be well paid I assure you.’

“That would be great.’

There is always plenty of work for you to do Des as these washers have a tendency to break down.’

“I know someone who can get spare parts cheaper for you said Des.’

“That is good to know.’

Paul held the door so that Liz and Jenny could get into the back.

Des let himself into the front and sat beside Paul.

“How many shops does your father own?’

He has fourteen now; they are situated all over the place. We have four in Newcastle, two in Tynemouth, two in Whitley Bay, two in Cullercoats, and two in North Shields and two in Wallsend

“How do you keep track of them all?

“Well I visit them everyday and make sure they are fully stocked. We empty the cashboxes every day.’

“We are going to the ones in Whitley Bay now; I will show you them after we have been for lunch.’

“Does your father not take an active role in the business now?

“No my father is ill now and I look after both my mother and my father.’

“He handed the business over to me two years ago after he had a stroke.’

“I’m sorry; we didn’t know.’

“He’s recovering slowly; his speech has been affected and he has lost some mobility but he is still alive and we are grateful for that.’

They drove along the coast towards Tynemouth and Paul pointed out the two shops on Front Street.

Then they drove along to Cullercoats and showed Des the two shops there.

There were two shops on Station Road that they passed on toward the esplanade where Paul pulled in outside of the Turknaz restaurant.’

Paul got out and opened the doors for Liz and Jenny and then they went into the small but pleasant restaurant.

There were only ten tables but at the other end of the room there was a large carpeted area with cushions and this was where the Arabs and Turks ate. They would all sit on the floor as the food was served on these large silver dishes. It was very informal Paul told them; this is where they all share a meal together.’

Paul pulled out a seat for Liz and Jenny then he and Des sat down at the table.’

Hamed the owner came and greeted Paul.

Paul embraced his friend and then introduced him to Des and his family.

He also told Hamed that he was a mechanic and if he needed any work doing on his car then des was the man to see.

Thank you so much.’

“You will be hungry, I will prepare some lunch Paul for yourself and your guests; I will bring you out a selection of food for you and your guests to try.’

Thank you Hamed.

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