Rich beyond my wildest dreams…

I have come into money.  A great deal of it, in fact.

A Nigerian lady has emailed to tell me her father has passed away.  It seems he owned a diamond mine in Africa and was worth, at a conservative estimate, about £300,000,000.

At present, the fortune is sitting in a Zurich bank account, earning a whopping £83,000 interest a day!  (That’s a sum to make even an MP’s eyes water.)

Unfortunately, for complicated reasons which, she admits, she doesn’t fully understand, the money can’t be sent directly to her, but must go through a UK bank account first.

Would it be all right, she asks, if the cash could be transferred into my name?  She says she knows she’s taking a risk, but is certain I’m an ‘honest man’ and wouldn’t try to fleece her rigid the minute the cheque had cleared.

I’m humbled that a perfect stranger should email out of the blue and place her trust in me.  I haven’t told the current Mrs C.  She’s an emotional woman, deep down, and would probably cry.

I write back at once, tell my new friend she can rely on me to do the decent thing and whom should I contact next?

Within the hour, she gets back to me with awkward news.   It seems there’s been a hitch. The Zurich bank is happy to credit me with all the cash, but there’s a fee to be paid upfront and, unless it’s handed over sharpish, the blighters won’t be parting with a penny.

That’s banks for you!    The minute they get their fingers in the till, they lose all sense of right and wrong and look on the money as their own.

The fee is £10,000 – exorbitant, in my opinion, but she says our hands are tied.  You’d have thought they could take it out of the interest earned and say no more about it.  But apparently that’s not allowed, and, unless we find the payment pronto,  the deal is off.

She says she knows it’s asking a lot – especially as we’ve only just met – but, if I’d be kind enough to forward her the fee, she’ll pay it to the bank herself and we can set the ball rolling.  In return – and wait for it, you won’t believe this – not only will she pay me back once funds have cleared, but I can keep a cool £10m for my trouble!

I email back and tell her not to worry.   She can place her confidence in Chester J Crump.  However, I add,  in my opinion the bank’s not to be trusted.   Our best bet is for me to fly to Zurich myself and do the deal in person.  We need to see the whites of their eyes and satisfy ourselves they’re on the level.  If not, anyone might make off with the cash.    A sandwich boy, perhaps, or the lady who cleans their telephones – nothing would surprise me in this day and age.

I ask for further details, and possibly a map;  though if she doesn’t have a printer I tell her, I can run something off at this end.

She’s back in a trice and begs me not to trouble myself further.  Wiring the money through to her in Lagos will be the simplest solution.

I email yet again and tell her I won’t hear of it.   Quite frankly, she’s an innocent abroad (literally, in this case!) and, if she’s not careful, someone less honest than me will take her to the cleaners.

For almost another hour we email back and forth, arguing the point.

Finally,  I fib – tell her I’ve been onto a travel agent, booked a flight and will be leaving for the airport first thing tomorrow.

It’s almost midnight now and she hasn’t got back to me.

I hope she hasn’t done anything silly and found someone else to help her out.

Thought for the Day

‘A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks round for a coffin.’

H L Mencken

(1880-1956)

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About Chester Crump

Chester J Crump has spent a lifetime in cheese. His company, CC Cheese Ltd, was voted Door to Door magazine’s ‘Smallest Retailer of the Year’ from 1985-2007. Cheddar Today described him as ‘Chester Crump, aged 45’, while the UK’s most successful broadsheet, The Daily Telegraph, has never mentioned him at all. In his spare time, and under a completely different name, Chester has written gags and sketches for a wide range of TV and radio shows both in the UK and mainland Europe (BBC1, ITV, S4C, Radio 2, Radio 4 and the World Service – among others). A published writer for children, teenagers and adults, he has also performed stand-up comedy across Yorkshire and, in 2011, at the Edinburgh Fringe. Ten years ago, he was rumoured to be the constant companion of Sarah Michelle Gellar – TV’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and, more recently, that girl out of EastEnders whose name no one can remember. When he’s not writing his blog, Chester attends second-hand hat conventions, and has what many believe to be the largest collection of used headgear in Yorkshire. He is married to a woman, and lives in a house. All the above is completely true – with the possible exception of the bits about cheese. And Buffy. And EastEnders. And hats.
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14 Responses to Rich beyond my wildest dreams…

  1. Dean Gregory says:

    Oh dear, it looks like you may have missed out on some serious money there. Clearly she just wants this done the easy way – I do hope it works out for her.

    On a similar note, I’m definitely trying this next time I get an email like that. I do love to mess with people like that.

    • It’s a great shame it all went wrong as I’d had my eye on a yacht. Sill, you may strike lucky and she’ll be in touch.

      Don’t make my mistake of trying to be too helpful. Send her the cash so she can do the deal on your behalf. Better still, send it to me – and I’ll forward it on to her should she resume contact. 🙂

  2. Green Quill says:

    Hi, I hope you would recollect me from Writers Bureau. I have only started following your blog recently and completely love it! It’s witty, crazy, funny and brilliant!! Keep it up, it makes us smile.

    • I do indeed! And many thanks for your very kind words which I much appreciate.

      I hope it’s all right for me to add a link to your blog on my ‘Links’ page. I did try to visit recently, but was told it ‘couldn’t be found’. However, I’ve just managed to look in, so I must have been doing something wrong as it is clearly still there. (I think I went to your ‘Green Quill’ page, which seems to be empty, rather than ‘Doldrums’.) All the best, and thank you again. 🙂

      • Green Quill says:

        It is completely fine with me if you do that; in fact I’d be happy to be associated with your blog! I have been reading more of it and been devouring it. Wish I had been following it earlier!

      • Again, thank you so much for your kind words. You’ve made my day!

  3. Gosh, is that old chestnut still around? It started with letters to businesses, now with the internet and email that business must be flourishing. Are people gullible. Nah! Though if they aren’t, how come scams like this are still operating? Answer, must be profitable. Makes you wonder.

  4. Ankur Mithal says:

    Touching indeed! How in today’s day and age complete strangers can come up and ask you to route their hard-earned and richly-deserved 3billion plus through your account should be a lesson for all of us. The milk of human kindness hasn’t run dry…

  5. DIC.............dodgy investments coordinator says:

    Love your blog…. I too have come into an inheritance and if you furnish me with your bank account details, i will gladly put some of it into said account on the other hand i could invest in a farm in zimbabwe. your loyal blog follower…….me

  6. I was just coming up with a theme for a science fiction story that linked this story, Harold’s Olga, anthropology and genetics but decided it might not be very politically correct. (A vastly overrated concept in my opinion but I wouldn’t want to offend anyone, all the same.) So I deleted it.

    • That sounds like some story! I think you should undelete it at once (if there is such a word). The world needs a little more fun, not less.

      ‘What do we want?’
      ‘Self-censorship!’
      ‘When do we want it?’
      ‘I’m sorry, I can’t say.’

      🙂

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