As Time Goes By (1992) s01e02 Episode Script

102 - Getting to Know You --- Again

# You must remember this # A kiss is still a kiss # A sigh is just a sigh # The fundamental things apply # As time goes by # Sorry about the hold-up.
Students seem to demonstrate more than study.
- At least they care.
- Oh, yes.
They care for the whole world, every bit of it, except their own bit.
What about their own people? There are old people like you and me sleeping rough.
They don't care about them, do they? Keep the change.
- Morning, Sandy.
- Morning.
Sandy, do me a favour.
Get over to that hotel, find Mr Hardcastle and give him a hand with his revisions on his book.
- Why me? I'm your secretary.
- Oh, to do me a favour.
We sent him a dud one last time.
You are the best.
You don't expect me to fall for a line like that? - Yes.
- All right, so I'm gullible.
What's he like? - Challenging.
- Oh, thanks.
- Any messages? - Oh, yes.
Age Concern rang.
Are you being funny? No.
They asked if we'd have a collection box in the office.
Yes, why not? - Right.
Well, I'll get off to the trenches.
- Thanks for helping out, Sandy.
Well, I'm concerned, aren't I? (Judith) Morning, Sandy.
(Sandy) Morning.
- Well? - I've sent Sandy.
No, well, how did you get on yesterday? Oh.
Well, he bought me a cider because I used to drink cider when we used to, um see each other long ago.
- Ah, that's sweet.
- Can't stand it now.
- You didn't tell him that? - Yes, more or less.
Mum, you don't rekindle a great romance like that.
If ever we lit a fire, the ashes have disappeared by now, probably overgrown.
- I wonder? - I don't.
- But you are going to see him again? - Well, he said he'd phone.
- When? - When the cider was making me feel ill.
- Oh, I don't know, whenever.
- What will you say? - "Hello.
" - Oh, Mum! Judy, Lionel knows he's not going to phone.
I know he won't phone, he knows I know he won't phone.
(Phone ringing) Hello? Jean Pargetter.
Oh.
Oh, yes, excellent.
I'd love to.
Yes, what? Tomorrow, 2:30? That'll be fine.
All right, bye.
Lionel knows he won't phone, I know he won't phone, he knows I know he won't phone.
- It wasn't Lionel.
- Oh.
The estate agents, they have a place in Richmond for me to see.
Another branch maybe.
- You could phone him.
- Oh, look, will you leave it? You're both lonely.
- I'm not! - You're not unlonely.
Well, you're unproductive.
All right.
But I bet right now, he's sitting in that hotel thinking of you and I'll bet he's sitting by a telephone.
- May I help, sir? - Yes, would you make out my bill? Leaving us, sir? - I'll make out your bill.
- Can I phone out on this? Dial 9 for an outside line, sir.
Should I get the number for you, sir? I'm quite capable of dialling a telephone number.
I've changed my mind.
Very good, sir.
Your bill.
- What does "misc.
Conf.
" mean? - Miscellaneous confectionary, sir.
I haven't eaten any confectionary.
Hmm.
Perhaps something from the minibar in your room? - I might have had some peanuts.
- That would be it.
Peanuts? Peanuts aren't confectionary.
Well, not strictly speaking, no.
Not even loosely speaking.
No, put it this way, sir.
We find itemisation less complicated under broad headings.
I see.
Well, if I'm ever unfortunate enough to eat here again I won't order mixed vegetables in case I get a couple of Mars Bars thrown in.
Thank you, sir.
Your receipt.
I do hope we'll have the pleasure of welcoming you again sometime.
Lionel! - Hello, mate.
- Hello, Alistair.
- You're not leaving us? - No, I'm just taking my suitcase out for a walk.
Nice one.
Listen though, I need to talk to you ASAP.
- Oh.
All right, let's have a COC.
- Sorry? A cup of coffee.
Nice one.
- May I help you, madam? - Yes, I'm looking for Mr Hardcastle.
I'm from Type For You agency.
Mr Hardcastle? I'm sorry, madam, but he's just checked out.
Are you sure? I wouldn't mistake Mr Hardcastle for anybody else, madam.
He knew I was coming.
That's downright rude.
Your word, madam, my sentiment.
I know I promised the revisions for today but there have been complications.
None of us gets a smooth ride, mate.
I've got the Aston Martin off the road for a week.
- How awful for you.
- Thanks.
The thing is, I need these revisions like yesterday, because I want to have your book in our autumn launch.
Good day, sir.
I thought we'd lost you.
Wishful thinking.
Two coffees, please.
Certainly, sir.
How will you be paying? Cash or - I've already settled my bill.
- No, you've just ordered.
I mean cash! Thank you, sir.
- Oh, God, I'm going to have to move back in.
- Was it that awful? - Worse.
- Why not work from home? Because I need secretarial assistance.
Secretarial agencies don't send secretaries to single men's flat.
Yes, right.
But surely a man of your age I'll stay here a few more days and do the revisions.
Brrrilliant! Now, the up side.
- The what? - On a lighter note.
Party tonight at my place.
Come when you like.
Thanks all the same, only parties and I aren't really compatible.
You don't think you're too old? No.
I don't like parties.
Think of it as fallow ground, mate.
There will be faces there.
Attached to bodies, presumably.
People you should meet.
We publish, they push.
The right contacts can make the public want to buy a book before it's printed.
Hype is what we're talking.
- Are we? - Do come, mate.
- All right, only do me a favour.
- What? - Stop calling me mate.
- Sure, no problem.
Two coffees.
Ah-ah.
Let me get these Li.
- Sandy's back.
- What? - Sandy's back.
- Oh, yes, I know.
Wasn't she was working for Lionel.
Rather difficult when he isn't there, he's checked out of the hotel.
What did he say? "I'm checking out," presumably.
- No, I mean to you.
Surely he phoned? - No.
- You mean he's just disappeared.
- In a puff of smoke for all I know.
Oh, Mum, I am sorry.
Look, don't be.
When he and I knew each other, we could vault five-bar gates.
Now I've seen him again, we realise we'd need a step ladder.
- Did you really vault five-bar gates? - Not as a way of life.
It's a metaphor.
- But you did love each other.
- Judy, you loved both your ex-husbands.
What would happen if you met them 38 years later? Not much.
They'd be in their 70s.
I told you he wouldn't phone.
You didn't say he'd just cop out and disappear.
But there's no real difference.
Not phoning is socially acceptable, disappearing is the action of a cowardly rat, but there's no real difference.
See you tonight then.
Whoa! Bring somebody if you like.
Cheers, Li.
Cheers, Al.
I'd like to move back in.
- But you just booked out, sir.
- I'm fickle.
As you say, sir.
Would you like the same room, sir? Doesn't really matter, does it? They're all identical.
The paintings are different.
I'm humbled.
How long will you be staying with us this time, sir? You'd like me to say forever, wouldn't you? A few days at the most, I hope.
Incidentally, I'm expecting a girl.
Really, sir? - From a secretarial agency.
- But she came about an hour ago.
- Damn! What did you tell her? - I told her that you'd checked out, sir.
- Why? - Because at the time, you had, sir.
Damn! Does this mean you'll be checking out again, sir? - It's the Scarlet Pimpernel to see you.
- Look, I must go.
Bye.
Do you train your staff to be rude? She's the girl who just wasted her time going to the hotel.
Ah.
- What do you want see me for? - I came to see your mother.
- To apologise? - Certainly not, to explain.
- Well, she's out.
- I gathered that, might I know where? Look, are you playing games, or what? Yes, I'm playing a game where I ask questions and don't get any answers.
She's gone for a walk in the park, if you must know.
- Why? - Well, not to throw herself in the serpentine.
I hadn't really thought of that.
It's an odd time for a walk.
Don't you call my mother odd.
You're the only odd thing in this setup.
I wondered if I could have a secretary tomorrow? - No.
- Thank you.
- Why do we do it? - Ha! I don't.
Lucky you.
Are you married? - No.
I was.
- That explains it.
- You're torturing yourself for your husband? - He's started calling me chunky.
- Oh.
Sweet.
- He only says it in fun.
I suppose he's as thin as a rake.
No, he's quite tubby, really.
But men can carry it off, can't they? That's a saying that's passed into folklore without a shred of evidence, as far as I'm concerned.
Talking of men, there's one watching us.
- Well, well.
- Do you think he's one of the peculiar ones? I can guarantee it.
- Want to jog along with me? - Wrong heels.
- He's coming over.
- You go off, I'll be all right.
- Sure you can manage? - Oh, yes.
I can deal with the peculiar ones.
Big park, this.
I'd have used a flare if I'd known you were coming.
I thought I'd explain the mixup about my booking out.
Well do.
Well, the first thing to say is that I never did book out.
That assumes you have a doppelgänger with the same name.
It doesn't assume anything of the sort.
Your girl got it wrong.
- Oh, I see.
- You know what they're like.
- Who? - Girls.
Heads in the clouds half the time.
Probably dreaming of some pop star, Kylie Minogue or whatever his name is.
Jason Donovan.
Kylie Minogue's a girl.
Cliff Richard then.
There are three things you ought to know about Sandy.
She has her feet on the ground, is very bright, and has excellent hearing.
The result is that when the desk clerk tells her Mr Hardcastle has checked out, she realises in a flash that he has.
- Perhaps there was another Mr Hardcastle.
- He described you as unmistakable.
- All right I did book out.
- I knew you did.
- I was going to tell you.
- No, you weren't.
No, I wasn't.
- It's your daughter.
- What's she got to do with it? Well, it's all this Alice in Wonderland stuff.
The vision that, suddenly, after 38 years without seeing each other, we should somehow pick up where we left off.
- She's a romantic.
- Absurd.
She's been married twice.
You have to be a romantic to marry twice.
All I said was I'd phone.
As opposed to sneaking out of the hotel and disappearing? - Did you intend to phone me? - Yes probably.
- Not.
- Not.
No.
You? - Not.
- No, thank you.
Thank you.
- I booked back into the hotel.
For a few days.
- You have a home? Of course I do, I have a flat.
But I've got to finish the revisions on the book.
- Can you only write in a hotel? - You won't send secretaries to men's flats.
Knowing me as you do, you might make an exception.
What do you mean knowing you as I do? We don't know each other any more.
Do I look the sort of man who'd jump on a secretary? I don't know what that sort of man looks like.
Well, not like me.
Thing is, I do need a secretary because Am I boring you? Look.
(Jean) That's us 38 years ago.
(Lionel) This is where we first met.
(Jean) I know.
Do you think we're in a sort of time warp? Perhaps we're hallucinating.
"Excuse me," you said "could you direct me to Curzon Street.
" Pretty steamy opening gambit, wasn't it? - Why did you want to go there? - I didn't.
It was the first street I thought of.
When I told my parents a soldier picked me up they had a thousand fits.
- On the road to hell? - Something like that.
We didn't do that on our first date.
We didn't do anything.
You swung from a tree.
Good God, so I did.
Were you impressed? I tried not to laugh.
Thanks.
It may not be their first date.
I hope it is.
Why? I just do.
Well, now that we've established we're not going to see each other any more, I'd better get back.
I'd better get started on those revisions.
May I have a secretary at the hotel tomorrow? - You will be there? - I'll be there.
Very well.
- Goodbye.
- Goodbye.
Will you stop running? I thought you were a mugger.
Right now I couldn't mug a very little old lady.
- You've gone a funny colour.
- That's what I mean.
Why didn't you call out? I can run or I can call out but not both at the same time.
- Do you want to sit down? - I think I'd better.
I haven't run for ages.
I can see that.
Why were you running after me anyway? Ah.
Well, I wondered if you'd like to come for a party this evening? We've just said goodbye.
Yes, I know.
- Now you're asking me to come to a party? - Nothing odd about that.
- It's not generally the way round of things.
- No, I suppose not.
- Would you like to come? - Why? Well, something to do, it would get you out.
What do you mean it'd get me out? I don't spend the evenings knitting wrapped in a shawl.
- Get me out then.
- Well, you're going anyway.
Why all the fuss? It's perfectly simple.
I'm asking you to a party.
Just say yes or no.
Oh, all right.
No! - It would do you good.
- I don't understand this sudden concern.
Why do you want me to come? Because I don't want to go on my own.
My boy publisher is giving the thing.
He wants me to meet some people or "faces" as he puts it.
I'm not good at meeting people.
What makes you think I am? You run a business, you must meet lots of people.
- In business, yes.
- Well, then.
Well, that's business.
I'm not very good at chitchat.
I'm not even very good at chit.
- We could always talk to each other.
- We don't have to go to a party to do that.
It's not the greatest book in the world, I know that.
My Life In Kenya.
Doesn't sound exactly heart-stopping.
So anything I can do to help push the sales - That's blackmail! - Yes, I know.
Next one, I hope.
- We made it.
Balloons.
- Wait.
Wait.
Get your breath back first.
- You're not breathing very evenly yourself.
- I'm just being companionable.
- Do I look all right? - Yes, very smart.
- Smart? - Nice.
There's no need to gush.
If we don't like it, we won't stay.
Right.
- Come on, you used to like parties.
- I used to like cider.
Yeah Look, what if we just Li! Hello, mate.
Sorry about the lift being on the blink.
It's all right, I always use the stairs.
Alistair, may I introduce Jean Pargetter? Brilliant.
Hi.
Hi.
Come in.
Come in.
Meet some faces.
Listen up, everybody, Lionel and Joan.
- Jean.
- Yeah, Jean, right.
- Do mingle, mingle.
I'll get you a wet.
- My God, they're all 12 years old.
- Hi, I'm Tanya.
I'm in aromatherapy.
- Are you really? - Are you Alistair's parents? - Certainly not! - What are you in? - I'm a writer.
Fantastic.
- And I run a secretarial agency.
- Fantastic.
- Have you tried the dip? - The dip? Marcus is troughing it.
I should get stuck in if I were you, it's fantastic.
Fantastic.
There you go.
It's a sort of punch.
Marcus picked up the recipe in Zaire.
- Cheers.
- Cheers.
Brilliant, isn't it? It's very It's the most awful drink I've ever had in the whole of my life.
Really? Li, there's a chap I think you should meet.
Er Chas.
Chas? Chas is in book jackets, he'll probably do yours.
In crayon, presumably.
Author for you, Chas, just throw some stuff at him.
I know who I want you to meet.
- What is it you want us to throw about? - Ideas for the cover.
Ah.
- What's your book called again? - My Life In Kenya.
Mm.
What's it about? My life in Kenya.
I suppose lions are rather passé.
- Not if you're a lion.
- Mm.
- What about women? - What about women? Those high-neck silk jobs slit to the thigh would be eye-catching on a bookshelf.
- Cheongsams.
- Sorry? They're called cheongsams, and you got the wrong continent.
- Are you sure? - Positive.
- What about Zulus? - Wrong country.
- Are you sure? - Positive.
- Got any ideas of your own? - At the moment, several.
- You're not drinking much.
- I'm savouring it.
You wanted me to meet someone? Yes, I did.
Er Me.
Oh! - Where's Lionel been hiding you? - In a little rosewood pencil box.
Why? Because of all the women in this room, you stand out.
- Well, I know.
I'm twice their age.
- Tosh! What are you? 45? - Oh, well - No age at all.
Are you single? I'm a widow.
Are you, though? - Why do you say "are you, though" like that? - Well, I - There you are.
- Hello, Lionel.
Did you and Chas mesh? - Mesh? - You know Not so much as Pity.
Still, he's not the only grape in the bunch.
To be perfectly honest, I think he's becoming a bit barren, ideas-wise.
Getting a bit long in the tooth for the job, perhaps.
- Have you met Sean? - He's not the one lying under the table? No, no, no.
That would be Marcus.
Sean's an outlet.
I'll find him for you.
- He's probably still in short trousers.
- I think I've been chatted up.
- Who by? - Alistair.
That's absurd.
- Why? - Well um If you say I could be his mother, I'll spit in your eye.
- I wasn't going to.
- Why absurd? - Er ambitious? - Better.
Lionel? Sean.
Sean, Lionel.
- How do you do? - You're not fiction, are you? No, I'm a real person.
- I meant your book.
- Did you? That's you two chatting.
Jean, there's someone I'd like you to meet.
Non-fiction, particularly in hardback, isn't always that easy to shift.
Heavier, I suppose.
- I'm talking market, Lionel.
- Oh, market.
I do speak from experience.
I'm sure.
You work in a book shop? - I'm an outlet.
- Yes, so Alistair said, but do you work in a book shop? I own a few.
- Own? - Yeah.
Any idea who's doing the jacket? We were thinking of Chas, but it could be that his best days are behind him.
Some truth in that.
He's 32, you know.
Good God.
Is he? Let's face it, if you're not running something by the time you're 30 these days - Well - Well It's such a pressure these days, isn't it? Does one breed or not.
Yes, it is quite a responsibility.
Heavy.
And then one has to very carefully consider placing the puppies.
Puppies? I was talking about kids.
Oh.
I've never heard it referred to as breeding? What did they call it in your day? Er, having children? Fantastic! There's so much to think about.
Breast-feeding, global warming, nannies, school fees, the rainforest, genetic engineering, whether to have an epidural.
It's quite a wide range.
I'm green, you see, that's half the problem.
It makes you feel good about yourself but it can be awfully depressing.
Yes.
I mean, what does the green child have to look forward to? Tanya wants t know what the green child has to look forward to? Blending in nicely with the lawn, I should think.
- See you later.
- Fantastic! - Was I a bit rude? - Yes, but very welcome.
- Who does Alistair keep wanting you to meet? - Him! What have you been doing? Feeling older by the minute.
I've just been asked whether Lloyd George was a truly great orator.
The assumption being you knew about him? No, the assumption being that I knew Lloyd George personally.
Now, why do you keep moving about? I have to keep the circulation going.
- I like a woman who's into self-mockery.
- Yes, I keep myself in stitches.
Touché.
Come on, Li.
Where have you been hiding her? - In a little rosewood pencil box.
- That's what Jean said.
So I did.
- (Lionel) You didn't mind leaving early? - Not at all.
Another hour and I'd have been changing nappies.
Not so much a generation gap, more a generation chasm.
- Thanks for coming.
- Well, it was an experience.
(Chuckling) What made you think of the little rosewood pencil box? - Just came to me.
You? - Yes, the same.
You bought it for me in an antique shop in where? - That's right.
If I was off duty at the hospital and you had a 36-hour pass, I used to come up by train.
Funny thing to buy a girl you were in love with.
Were you? You know damn well I was.
I must have been.
Three and six that pencil box cost.
- I've still got it.
- Have you? - Must be worth millions now.
- At least.
Ghosts.
Everywhere you look, ghosts.
Maybe we're the ghosts.
Maybe we are.
# You must remember this # A kiss is still a kiss # A sigh is just a sigh # The fundamental things apply # As time goes by # And when two lovers woo # They still say I love you # On that you can rely # The world will always welcome lovers # As time goes by #