Fawlty Towers

25th Anniversary Hollywood Style?

The sign out side the hotel read WAT FOWLERS, the local kids had been rearranging the sign for the millionth time. Walking back from his morning constitutional, Basil wasn't going to let anyone or anything ruin today. It was a very special day 25 years since he married Sybil, besides if anything went wrong today Sybil would make sure he was singing soprano for the rest of his days, the woman's heated curling tongues were lethal in her skilled hands.

Basil rubbed his hands together as he contemplated the surprise he had planned, an extra treat to make the anniversary unforgettable. His morning walk fired him up for the days warfare with the guests. Polly was behind the reception desk pretending to be busy, she has seen Basil coming through the front entrance thanks to the conveniently placed mirror.

"Good morning Polly where's the trouble and strife?"

"Dealing with a guest in the dining room Mr. Fawlty"

"Pureeing them with her tongue you mean".

"Mr. Fawlty its your anniversary"!

"Thanks for reminding me Polly, just because it's my anniversary doesn't mean I can't enjoy myself, You know I worship the ground that's coming to Sybil"!

"Mr. Fawlty you are awful".

"Have you got the dirty laundry ready it's due to be collected this morning".

"Manuel is taking care of it Mr. Fawlty".

"Oh my God Girl, have you lost your senses, you can't trust that Dago doughnut, I thought I told you to take care of it yourself"!

"Yes, Mr. Fawlty but Mrs Fawlty said…"

"Mrs. Fawlty, said, and who do you think pays your wages girl? I do, not that…" The all too familiar shrill shreik that could pierce an eardrum at a thousand paces was heard, "BASIL"

"Yes Sybil my Queen", "What was that you were saying to Polly about who pays her wages"? Thinking on his feet and searching for a convenient lie to get himself out of yet another fix with Sybil. Basil smiled as he looked at her trying to convey the impression of a star crossed lover? "I was just telling Polly that if she thinks I pay her wages then I do, not that Mrs. Fawlty doesn't pay them it's just that my name is on the cheques".

"Do you seriously think after 25 years of marriage I can't tell when you're lying Basil?"

"But Sybil I wasn't lying I…" "Save it Basil, do you know how I can tell your lying to me?" With almost a whisper Basil replied, "no". "I'll tell you how I know Basil, your lips move". With that Sybil made her way to the office at the back of the reception desk and closed the door.

Looking at Polly Basil said, "That went well".

A large wicker laundry basket came crashing down the staircase with Manuel running after it shouting, "no, no, please, no".

Basil barked at Manuel, "Put It In The Kitchen", and pointed to the laundry basket, The little Spaniard misunderstanding asked, "Que" Basil again said, "Put It In The Kitchen". Manuel still not comprehending what he had been told, replied, "No Mr. Fawltee is no Kitten in, Is Laundry". Manuel opened the lid and pulled out a dirty sheet. "Manuel go and wait on tables in the dining room". before he could say Que, Basil had grabbed him by the scruff of the neck and flung him through the dining room doors. Muttering to himself, Basil went back behind the reception desk to await the next challenge, the staff, the guests and the wife, all sent to try his patience.

The postman was just about to hand over a package, as Major Gowen came into view from the direction of the bar, strange, thought Basil, the old drunk must have spent the night in the bar, "Good Morning Major"

Without slowing down the major replied, "eggs and bacon Fawlty". As he made his way to the dining room.

Basil took the package the postman was holding and said, "the people you have to deal with"! The postman nodded and left as much as to say tell me about it.

Almost fondling the package Basil smiled a smile that would have made the Cheshire cat envious, in this package was the cream that was going to make Sybil's memories of this anniversary, unforgettable, and he would be in her good books for the next 25 years?

It was almost lunch time when Sybil emerged from the office, "Have you done the menus Basil?"

"Yes my little tyrant".

"What about the laundry?"

"All taken care off light of my life"

"Well I'm glad to see you can handle some things on your own Basil".

"I usually have to do".

"What was that BASIL?" Sybil shrieked.

"I said it's hard without you my love".

Looking a little mellow Sybil remarked, "who would have thought it 25 years and this year you have managed to make this anniversary special, unlike last year, and the year before and the year before".

Basil had a rare twinkle in his eye as he spoke of his extra special treat.

"You know that we are having everyone around this evening for drinks, Roger, daisy and the rest of the gang plus Colonel Twitching, and the ladies and the Major".

"Yes Basil I know all that".

"Ah but what you don't know is that I have a special treat in store for you".

"What is it Basil tell me".

"You are going to love this, you remember when you went on that golfing weekend a couple of months ago, and those film people from Hollywood were here and you missed them, The ones making that Die Hard movie".

"Yes Basil I remember the Movie lie".

"I wasn't lying Sybil I have in my hand proof positive that what I told you was the absolute gospel truth, in this package is the video, that will make Fawlty Towers famous throughout the entire civilized world. Not only do they show the hotel and directions to get here, but I, your ever loving husband, appear in it as the bartender, how's that for promoting and boosting the profile of this establishment?"

"Let me see".

"You will have to be patient my little wonder woman, I will put the video on when everyone is here, straight after the special meal that Andre is preparing for us, there are all your favourite courses".

"You really know how to treat a girl Basil, this is just like the time we met and I fell in love with you, I can't believe I said that".

Pretending not to hear Basil, went in search of some lunch in the Kitchen, before the guests devoured everything.

It was eight thirty and everyone was gathered in the bar to drink a toast to Sybil and Basil's 25 remarkable years of survival against all that life could throw at them.

Basil unwrapped the package carefully and looked at the video case, the printers must be illiterate they misspelt Hollywood as Nollywood, and even the title got misspelt it read Die Harder Starring Bruce Willy's and featuring the legendary and beautiful hotel Fawlty Towers, well they spelt the hotel name correctly and even a mention of the bartender played by Basil Fawlty.

"Has everyone got a drink?" Everyone nodded, "I would like to propose a toast to my beautiful wife of 25 years Sybil". they all raised their glasses and made the toast, "To Sybil".

Basil placed the video into the VHS machine and dimmed the lights, pressing play he said I know you will all enjoy this piece of cinematographic culture, the screen lit up with an image looking up the driveway to the hotel, the camera panned up the path to the main entrance and inside the reception area, the scene changed to the door of one of the bedrooms the door slowly opened and as the camera panned into the room on the bed directly in view were two naked women and a Bruce Willis look-alike.

As the main door to the hotel slammed Basil could hear the blood curdling scream, "BASIL, BASIL, BASIL, YOU ARE A DEAD MAN WHEN I GET HOLD OF YOU".