Transcript of Mr. Biggs’ Session
I was sitting my chair, you know and, um, I was reading the newspaper, which had just come, you know . . . and I felt a bit sort of odd, like, you know. And I thought; well that’s funny. I took my specs [glasses] off, you know and put them on the table, and all that. I’ll just sit quiet for a minute, it will pass off, you know.
But, uh, the next thing I knew was that, I was sitting there, but I wasn’t there. I wasn’t. I was, sort of, standing—so it seemed to me—standing by the chair, looking at myself. There was the newspaper on the table and my glasses and I thought; this is odd, very strange, you know. I couldn’t make head nor tail of this at all.
And then I was conscious of the fact there was someone knocking at the door. Don’t know how, but it was funny that. I was standing there, sort of, looking at myself sitting in the chair and yet, it was as if I could hear this knocking at the door. And at the same time, almost to the minute, second, I was able to see who was knocking at the door, yet I was still standing in the room. And it was my sister. And she lived a few doors down the road, you know.
I thought: ”Oh dear, what am I going to do? I can’t open the door.” I don’t think, in any case it’s . . . you know I was in a proper sort of panic. Anyway this knocking went on and I was, sort of, getting all flustered, like, you know; thinking I was, sort of, dreaming or something. And I was hoping I’d wake up and go and open the door to my sister, but, nothing happened.
And then, I could see her, came down the path. She was looking proper upset and agitated and I thought; well I don’t know, what do I do, you know? And, um, anyway, what must have been only a few minutes, she came back with a policeman. ”Oh dear, what did she want to fetch a policeman for?’
And it suddenly dawned on me; “Course, she couldn’t get in, perhaps she was upset or worried about me. And yet I thought, well there’s nothing I can do about it. So I, sort of, just stood there beside myself—it sounds silly when you say that—and I thought; well I don’t know, if she comes in and sees me slumped in that chair like that, she’ll get probably quite a fright. I must try and wake myself up, you see.
So I shook myself like mad, you see, but nothing happened and I could see I was in a proper state, you know. And I thought; well I don’t know, what am I going to do? This is most peculiar. Anyway, eventually, the policeman got in at the window and he came into the room—and I recognized him. I’d seen him many a time on the beat [patrolling his district] you know.
There was . . . well, a time before . . . I couldn’t understand what was going on. Anyway, he shook me. He thought I was asleep you see, the same as I did. Nothing. Nothing happened. He hadn’t even realized I was dead. And he opened the door, of course, and my sister came in. She was in a proper state, I tell you. “Course, that’s all I had left, was my sister, at that time; May . . .
Anyway, they went for the doctor of course, old Doctor Foskett. He came you know, but he was no bloody good anyway. I mean, he couldn’t do anything for me. I mean, it was obvious then. I realised myself that I’d had it [died].
But I was trying to, sort of, calm down my sister, she didn’t take notice of me. And I went and stood and put my hand on her shoulder and tried to tell her I was alright, it was not me that was there, that I was standing beside her. But she obviously didn’t seem to cotton on [realize] at all, the fact that it was me at all, you know. She just sat there and . . . a proper state she was in.
Anyway, then, uh, th . . . th . . . th . . . the doctor, he went, and then they came and they took my body away, you see. They slumped me down like an old sack of potatoes. I thought; well, I’m not going after that, I’m going to stay here in my home. I might as well sit down in my chair now it’s empty. So I sat down there and tried to think it all out. Anyway, my sister, by this time, she’d gone off and I was alone in the house again.
Then all of a sudden, it was just as if the fireplace disappeared—it’s the only way I can put it—and there, where the fireplace was, it was as if the wall had disappeared and I could see beautiful green fields and trees and a little, sort of . . . well, I wouldn’t say it was a river, it was more like a little brook.
And I could see something . . . something—at first I didn’t know what it was—coming up towards me in the distance. And I made it out, it was a figure. It was my mother.
Dear, oh dear. And she looked, ooh, as I’d seen her in the picture—which I’d still got in the room hanging up on the wall, as a matter of fact—my mother when she was first married. She came right up to, what was, the fireplace, towards me and she was smiling all over her face and she was happy as a sandboy.
She says, ”Come on,” she says, “you don’t want to stay here. It’s no good you sitting here. No one’s going to take any notice of you. May won’t realize, you know. You’ll have to come and be with me, you see. ”
So I says, ”Well I don’t know, I don’t understand . . . ”
She says, ”You know, it’s all over now, you’ve had it, you know. You’re dead, you see. You don’t want to stop here, slumped in that old chair in this room, ” she says.
She says, ”What a right old pickle you’ve been living in . . . ” you know.