How much?

‘How much is it worth?’

‘It’s invaluable.’

The Post Office clerk frowned. ‘What’s its price?’

‘It’s priceless.’

The clerk looked unconvinced. He lifted the brown package from the scale. ‘What is it?’

‘A work of art.’

The clerk turned the package in his hands. ‘It feels like a book to me.’ 

‘It’s a masterpiece.’

‘Really?’ Conscious of the lengthening queue of increasingly impatient customers, the clerk tried a different line of questioning, ‘how much did it cost you?’

‘Three year’s hard endeavour, a lifetime of thwarted dreams, countless false starts and numerous rejections.’

‘Look Sir, I need a value for insurance purposes. The cost of the insurance is proportionate to the value of the item. If you want me to record it as invaluable, then it will cost you hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds to send.’

‘Ah, okay. £8.99.’

‘Thank you, Sir. If you don’t mind saying, that sounds like a bargain. For a work of art.’

‘I couldn’t have put it better myself.’

February 2022

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