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Sad Charlie

Published June 11th, 2012

I don't know his name, but he always dressed as Charlie Chaplin and so I called him Charlie.

Charlie was for years a regular sight on the Square in Bournemouth, collecting for charity. Against expectations, he rarely actually did anything! His technique was to stand in one spot, occasionally swinging his cane and generally looking pretty glum. Most passing children steered clear, clearly wary of this strange little man.

Occasionally, Charlie would vanish from the streets for weeks on end. There were rumours of wrongdoing or problems, but he always popped backed on his regular spot. Until a couple of years ago, when he went and never returned. I know nothing about the man, not even his real name. Nor do I know if the rumours were true or not. I do know he seemed a troubled soul and lonely. A local character, now seemingly gone for good.

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