How Chicken Soup Saved The Day

The harsh winter of 1963 had settled over Ten Acre; bringing with it icy, miserable winds and a terrible bout of flu which confined most of the residents to their beds. In that time, snow had availed itself of the lack of residents to clear it, and deposited thickly in mounds obstructing the roads. It was relentless.

By day three of the blizzard, even the few brave and healthy villagers were clearly overwhelmed, and Mr Salt convened an emergency meeting of the village council to decide on a course of action. Only Mr Lettuce the Postmaster was well enough to attend; he quickly briefed the mayor on the increasingly dire situation. Their brooding and nose-blowing was interrupted some 15 minutes later by the telephone ringing.

The Mayor took the call, and a broad smile soon spread over Mr Salt’s face – indeed he was almost laughing as he hung up and exclaimed “Everything’s going to be just fine!”

By the next day, everything was covered in a smooth, unbroken sheet of white. A distant rumbling turned out to be a giant sled laden with an enormous soup urn being pulled by old men on snowmobiles.

One leather-and-fur-clad bearded gentleman dismounted and walked up to the gathering crowd and shouted “Hi! I’m Bob Olson – we heard you were in trouble so we came to help.”

The rest of the visitors slowly climbed off their vehicles and shuffled over to where Bob was standing.

Even though they were really quite elderly, stooped and a bit creaky, there was an air of calm confidence and strength about the men. They were, as Bob explained, the Retired Despatch Riders Association (the R.D.R.A) – a one time elite squad of former motorcycle messenger boys, who were bored with retirement and wanted to relive their glory days by helping people in distress by delivering emergency supplies.

The R.D.R.A. set about their mammoth task, ladling generous helpings of rich chicken soup out of the colossal urn and into flasks which they then set about distributing, together with blankets and fresh supplies of coal. One by one the people of Ten Acre felt invigorated by the beautiful gift of soup and warmth. As their aches eased and their bellies became full, the residents felt a new surge of hope and energy.

The day had been saved, and Ten Acre was back stronger than ever, thanks to some eccentric help and lots of hot chicken soup…