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Francoise Pascal

   No - It Definitely Wasn't A Dream!

There I was, dancing the 'old year' away with the most beautiful girl in the world, with at least a hundred men watching and envying our every move. Unfortunately my wife, mother-in-law and most of her family were also surveying the scene most intently (maybe I should rename this piece 'My Most Embarrassing Moment'!). The girl was the lovely film star Francoise Pascal, who had just returned from filming 'There's A Girl In My Soup' with Peter Sellers, but is probably better known to everyone as the pretty French student in the Seventies television comedy series 'Mind Your Language'.

All of a sudden, I noticed that she was topless (I'd had a few drinks at this point)! Should I run? Should I stop dancing and try to be the perfect gentleman while she made herself decent again? I also couldn't help noticing that she was smiling brightly and, to make things worse (obviously noticing my dilemma) she came closer and kissed my neck! Now I WAS embarrassed......
I really had no idea what to do! All I could do was to continue dancing.

I had purchased ten seats at this gala evening, which was in aid of a Jewish ex-servicemen's charity, from my wife's uncle. Every other table was taken up with ex-servicemen at least ten years older than the occupants of our table. I had invited Francoise and her beau, the famous actor Richard Johnson, to this New Year gala. For no reason that I could fathom she'd been flirting with me all evening. Was it to make Richard jealous? He appeared to be finding it all a great laugh. As I've said, we had all had a fair amount to drink so what was I to do apart from hope that she would stop for just long enough to pull up the dress, as quickly as she had pulled it down. Yes - it suddenly dawned on me that I had seen her do that! OK - she had a wonderful body, we were celebrating 'New Year' so let's share our luck... we carried on dancing.

It could have been that she was bored. In hindsight, I could have taken them to somewhere more exciting. Possibly, she was trying to wake up the party! She certainly managed to do that but, in the process,had shot my reputation for years to come for, with all my 'gift of the gab', I was never ever going to be able to explain this one away. I never did succeed. These days I'm bald, pot-bellied and seventy and, seeing Francoise on TV a few months back, saw that she had grown big and buxom. However, nobody can deny that she was really lovely to behold then, and I treasure that memory of her. She was a fine actress in the 'Marilyn Munro' mould and, had she had the breaks, could have made it to the very top.

Danny Benjamin 2007