The Judas Goat

I’ve never really liked goats. Something about their smell, the dead eyes and annoying bleat. So growing up on a smallholding in Cornwall in the 1980s with a handful of the creatures was something of a trial: my mother named one Mischief – not without good reason. It seemed that no matter how hard you hammered the spike to tether them into the ground they would find a way to escape. And then they would head towards the garden, greenhouse or vegetable plot and begin to feed. However, unlike other animals that might eat a few plants and then proceed to curl up and siesta the goat will stroll around picking the growing tips of as many choice plants as it can find and ringing as many newly planted trees and shrubs. It is this almost hellish characteristic that I most disliked and which has led to them being nick-named ‘The Desert Makers’. My favourite saying in reference to goats as a species was ‘the best kind of goat is a curried one’. Continue reading

Street Life

I stepped out onto the balcony just in time to witness a stream of urine spurting down into the street from the balcony opposite. The small boy giggled with delight, his naked brown bottom-half shining in the early morning sun while his father sat behind him smiling at the scene with no word of reproach. The man was dressed in flamboyant red boxing shorts but his physique was not that of a fighter, or if it had been then those days were long past and the shorts were an old memento. Their little balcony was cluttered with plants, chairs and washing: a tiny piece of al fresco space cantilevered out above near traffic-less streets in a part of the city without plazas or green space. Continue reading

Dreaming of Bacon

Those of you who know me well will gasp at the next piece of information. Until yesterday midday I had not eaten for 65-hours! A personal record indeed but one which gave me absolutely no pleasure in achieving. For the first time in nearly a year I was laid low by a stomach infection which came at me unbidden and sweeping low under the radar did its work and laid me out flat for two days straight (which might also be another record). Wow, down like a nine-pin. Continue reading

Grist to the Mill

Must post, must post, must post! It seems like a long time since the publish button was tapped, and indeed it is, over 3-weeks. Why this has happened is the reason behind this post’s opening lines. There is a a need to break silence and get something, anything out there (although not just any old thing will do as it does need to have some sort of binding theme to it). Continue reading

The Pit-stop Blues

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Watching the lightning bugs flicker outside the window I realised that after 8-months on the road we had only 8-nights left before we would board a plane and head for England and home. Except this time it is different because our ‘home’ is no longer ours to return to, it is rented and will remain so almost indefinitely.

Continue reading