‘Armando’s All Right Then…’

carlos
No, not Armando…this is the next President of Costa Rica…

This is Julio on the ‘phone this morning, checking that I had the results of Costa Rica’s Presidential election in which one man called Alvarado, centre left candidate, beat another man called Alvarado, evangelical preacher, standing for ‘family values’, i.e. the missionary position in the dark with a person of the opposite sex, both of whom had preferably tithed to support their local preacher in the luxury to which he woshed to become accustomed.

Armando is a notorious homosexual…well, notorious in his village anyway….but as far as I was aware he stood in no added danger if the evangelical had won, pogroms not being part of his election programme.

‘Ha,’ said Julio ‘Let these demagogues get into power and you’ll have Hitler before you know it!’

Before I left for a trip to Europe which involved almond blossom in Spain,  a non functioning Mithraeum, snow, ice, non delivery of mother’s shopping – twice – catching a chest infection and suffering from hypothermia in Barcelona airport  the thirteen candidates for the Presidency in Costa Rica had been reduced to two after the first round of voting.

Against all expectation, one of the two was Fabricio Alvarado, of the wonderfully named National Restoration Party, who had profited from the declaration of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights that all signatory countries must permit same sex marriage to rise in his wrath and declare his opposition to such a challenge to traditional culture. It was an imposition…it was contrary to Costa Rican customs…next thing you know it would be in vitro fertilisation and homosexuals running rampant in the streets.

fabricio

It struck a chord. Previously, despite holding open air prayer meetings all over the country, his share of the vote had been estimated at three percent. After declaring his opposition to same sex marriage it soared into the twenties and permitted him to be one of the two candidates in the run off.

Was the country mad? This was a man who made his name as a happy clappy singer in evangelical circles, who had slid under university rather than through it and whose period in the National Assembly was marked more by his absence than his presence.

And he was standing for the office of President.

He brushed aside claims of his lack of experience…..look at the mess those with experience had made, he said….God would guide him.

What was his attraction…and to whom?

Following the pattern set by the Front National in France and Trump in the U.S.A. he set himself up as the outsider…the man who represented those who felt they were ignored by those who ran the country…mostly in the coastal and frontier areas where infrastructure is poor, educational opportunity inadequate and well paid jobs non existent.

Traditional values were disregarded, undervalued by what was seen as an elite living in and around San Jose…a corrupt elite which had led the country to ruin both morally and economically.

There had already been disquiet in these areas about a new sex education module for high schools which dealt with gender identity, so Fabricio’s reaction to the decision of the Inter American Court fell on fertile ground.

He would be the man to take on the perverted politicians…guided by God and financed by the faithful.

Not only did he reach the run off, but his party acquired fourteen deputies in the new National Assembly, thirteen more than in the current one.

National Restoration was on a roll.

But the roll started to take a downhill trajectory.

The proposed cabinet of ministers were seen to be either useless or implicated in obscure financial affairs.

Fabricio accepted the aid of the least savoury part of the National Liberation Party to form his cabinet…there is acknowledged to be little that is more corrupt that the least savoury part of the PLN…so his claim of having clean hands went down the swanny in double quick time. Touch the PLN and you touch pitch.

Fabricio’s pastoral guide announced that the patron of the country…the Black Virgin…was a demon and that the Basilica which housed her shrine at Cartago was a haunt of Satan….which alienated a vast number of potential Roman Catholic voters who would otherwise have supported his views on ‘curing’ homosexuality and all the rest of the baggage…

cartago

In the televised debates he could not make a reasoned argument…

When he finally produced his manifesto it was only a shortly before  polling day and was a mess of copy and paste from the manifesto of the PLN candidate who did not make the run off.

Still, the polls and the papers had him twelve points ahead of his rival, Carlos Alvarado, of the ruling PAC party. As far as the media were concerned, Carlos had to be defeated by nomatter whom, as PAC had been undermining the power of the monopolists who make Costa Rica such an expensive country in which to live…monopolists who control the press. No way could Carlos beat Fabricio.

But he did. Sixty to forty per cent.

Costa Rica came to its senses.

There was a notion of ‘anyone but Fabricio’ just as in France there was  a notion of ‘anyone but Le Pen’, but a consensus was reached that there had to be an end to the inequalities that produced the Fabricio effect…that the better elements of the political scene had to stop squabbling and start to solve the problems that have been developing over the last twenty years.

Thus Carlos, not Fabricio.

But he faces an uphill task, like the current incumbent, President Solis, because PLN and National Restoration hold a majority block in the new National Assembly just as PLN does in the current body.

Cosdta Ricans have to take a further step…to make their representatives accountable. To force them to put country before pelf and party.

If they fail then there will be another four years of stagnation, of small gains, of deterioration of the quality of life of the majority of people.

Fabricio has left a time bomb….it needs to be defused and can only be so by popular pressure.

Still, there must be one group of people who are, whatever their views on same sex marriage, ‘curing’ homosexuals and in vitro fertilisation, very relieved that Fabricio has lost.

The diplomats of Costa Rica.

They will not be faced with explaining away a First Lady who ‘speaks in tongues’.

She is the one on the right as you see it.

Passing the port the wrong way might be overlooked…but speaking in tongues is beyond the pale……..

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Manhunt!

helicoptor

Up the road towards San Jose and near the local hospital is an area known as Loma Linda, or, less pleasantly, the Precaria.

The land itself is, or was, a finca which was the property of  a governmental institution which neglected it….and gradually seasonal workers, Nicaraguans come to pick coffee, started to set up permanent homes there, undisturbed.

Gradually the shacks made of galvanised sheeting became proper houses inhabited by families. The electricity system was hacked into to provide light and power…the water system likewise. It looks like any other village in the area and the council has now started a scheme to legitimise landholding…and to collect taxes!

Being something of an Alsatia, where no writ ran and dubious characters took refuge – many thanks to Mike of A Bit About Britain for reminding me of that part of London’s history – the area has been viewed with disfavour by its neighbours for some time, a view exacerbated now that Costa Rica has changed from being a staging post for the drugs trafficked between Columbia and the U.S.A. to a full blown market in itself.

Our little town has been hit hard…drugs on sale outside the schools, not to speak of inside, where the police now mount raids with drug detection dogs. Drugs on sale outside a popular restaurant and in the central park.

And with drugs use comes crime, to get the money for the next fix, so  not only is there the regular crime of stealing anything not nailed down but also housebreaking and mugging.

Little crime kingdoms have risen and have become profitable enough for other crime kingdoms to try for a takeover.

Last month there was a shoot out in Loma Linda between the resident crooks and a gang from one of the suburbs of San Jose, the action ending suddenly with the arrival of the police.

Ah yes…the police. There have been changes.

The new police chief has sussed that the regular penal judge has a great respect for the presumption of innocence and for the level of proof necessary to disturb that presumption. In other words, the alleged criminal will be free  to leave the court without  stain on his character on a normal judicial day.

Personally I think that the Fiscalia – State Prosecutors – might have something to do with the attitude of the judge. From what I have seen of their preparation of certain cases they seem to be acting as substitute lawyers for the defence…but, however that may be, the new broom has decided that it is only worth mounting large scale action at the weekends, when a duty judge is sent down from San Jose.

These gentlemen, used to the rough and tumble of the city’s summary courts, seem to have a looser definition of the necessary level of proof…bring one of the undesirables before them and they end up in preventive detention before you can say Jack Robinson.

So, last Friday, police nabbed a well known ne’er do well as he and his female companions were boarding a bus for San Jose. They were found to be carrying a quantity of good reported as stolen.

The duty judge issued a search order, and the home at Loma Linda gave up a vast quantity of other goods reported as stolen.

Six months preventive detention, and our boy was marched off to the police cells to await transfer to the jug.

By now public feeling was running high. Social media resounded to calls of ‘Burn the Precaria’, while honest residents of same responded that it was not their fault that they had criminals as neighbours and where were the police…

Public feeling was to run a damned sight higher that night when it was learned that our boy had escaped!

He had asked to go to the loo, and once out of his cell had assaulted the officers and made a run for it…through the main entrance of the police station!

Now, our little town is a bit of a joke, even to itself, but this was too much!

A manhunt was organised.

Local police, the local detective branch, specialised police from San Jose…and even a helicopter!

The ‘phones were hot as locals alerted the police to possible sightings…

He is Barrio St. Cecilia…he is climbing in and out of gardens…

He is in Barrio Carit….running off into a cafetal…

I am in Barrio Corazon de Jesus…I have shut myself into my house and he is in my garden…

I’ve just seen him in Barro San Isidro……

He is in Charcon! No, not that Charcon, the other one….

Thank goodness for the helicopter!

Not being a very bright criminal mastermind, our boy had legged it for home in Loma Linda where one of the San Jose police was keeping an eye on the premises. Spotting him, the lady…for it was a police woman ….attempted to arrest him. He fought back, injuring her, and she later said she thought she would be obliged to use her firearm, but a – female – colleague, alerted by the noise, came to the rescue and between them they managed to overpower him.

He was taken to the local hospital to have his physical state recorded…he seemed to have various injuries related to his refusal to be arrested…and was taken thence to the cells of the local detective branch where I suspect that he will have to exercise a great deal of bladder control before he is taken off to the jug.

As he now faces charges relating to escaping detention and attacks on the police women it is likely that his preventive detention will last rather longer than six months…to the delight of all right thinking people in the area.

Lucky that they caught him before the regular judge came back to work on Monday, though…

 

 

We’ll go no more a roving so late into the night

country road night

Well, not if I have my way they won’t.

Before we bought this finca the wide verge on the top road was a well known spot for nocturnal encounters of both the romantic and the commercial kind.

Gradually, what used to be lines of cars have dwindled to a few individuals and this winter they had disappeared altogether.

However, summer is with us and traditionalists are trying to keep up old customs.

I do not care in the least what people get up to on the verge of the top road…as far as I am concerned they can have a full scale Roman orgy on the Cecil B. de Mille scale complete with female flute players and acrobats.

I also know that with the close knit nature of family life in rural Costa Rica the minute that young lovers booked themselves  into one of the twenty four hour hotels of the area their grannies would know in an instant so often the car in a back road is the only means of obtaining a little privacy.

Equally, the ladies of the night find that their clients do not wish to shell out for a room…

However, I am fed up with the orgiasts who shower their rubbish on the verge and inside my property where the dogs and the sheep can get at it.

It might make a sociological study to examine the rubbish thus deposed…from the nature of it, could you reach conclusions about the social status of the nocturnal noshers?

Fast food containers, chicken bones, plastic bags, cans of beer, mixers and soft drinks prevail…together with the ubiquitous used condoms.

I used to go  out with a strong torch and one of the Staffies, but I am getting to an age when struggling into the dressing gown, finding the shoes and harnessing up Einstein or Bunter is getting to be rather too much of a performance, not to speak of the distance down the drive and along the boundary, so I asked for advice on Facebook as to how to set up a strong searchlight as a deterrent…and had many interesting suggestions following which I asked Don Freddy if his electrician son had any ideas.

Yes, he had several, including electrifying the fence.

I rejected that as I would be sure to forget to turn the thing off and end up electrocuting myself, so he agreed to set up a light with a cable and a switch on the balcony.

How, he asked, would I know that the cars were there without some photocell thing which any passing animal would switch on.

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Because Einstein snoozes on the balcony on summer nights and he strongly objects to cars which stop in the area of the house.

Cars which pass are fine.

Cars which stop are not.

Accordingly Don Freddy’s son set up the light on a tree well inside the property…in case some bright spark should steal it.

Night one.

Einstein, roused from slumbers, barks. Going to the window I see tail lights being switched off, so switch on my floodlight.

Crumbs! Don Freddy’s son has excelled himself! You could play a Test Match under it!

The car moves off.

One more turns up later…same gravy.

Night two.

Einstein barks. The sheep, whose pen is close to the road, are also disturbed.

No sign of tail lights, but I switch on the light anyway to illuminate a lithe two legged shape inside my property legging it for the boundary fence with a solid four legged shape rapidly gaining on it.

The four legged shape wins and the night is full of noise and fury…noise from the two legged who is hooked up on the wire in fine World War I style and fury from the four legged who is endeavouring to push him bodily into it.

Monty is loose.

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No, I do not have a photograph of Monty in action – you would have to have a screw loose to  hang about when he is – but from an abandoned lamb brought up on the bottle he has become a well muscled patriarch with a fine territorial instinct and a murderous temperament.

Someone comes along the road to extricate the intruder and there is a noise as of a car pulling away from somewhere down the hill to leave the night to silence…and to Monty.

Don Freddy’s son was right…someone had tried to steal the light. Might be a frustrated orgiast, might just be one of the local druggies after something to sell to feed his habit.

I await night three.

 

Election Fever and Marriage a la Mode

CR presidential candidates

Election time in Costa Rica!

On Sunday people will be voting to send deputies to the National Assembly and electing a President.

There is plenty of choice…thirteen candidates….and no real way of knowing how people will vote on the day.  The polls show that an increasing number of those who intend to vote are not at all sure for whom to vote…..though there is a suspicion that those who intend to vote Liberation are afraid to say so, linked as that party is to institutionalised corruption, but will vote green and white, the party colours, once in the privacy of the booth.

Liberation’s candidate, despite being a front man for the Oscar Arias tendency – think mining concessions in protected areas – claims to be ‘a man of the people’. Well, given that his family let out offices to government institutions on the grand scale I suppose he is a man of the people who let out tower blocks…

The defeated Liberation candidate, an ex President who thought it wise to sit things out in Switzerland for several years after his term of office ended, obviously felt sour as he has been financing a noisy demagogue from a tiny party made up for the elections who wants to rule with a firm hand and is notable for announcing that female judges could only get advancement by giving senior male judges oral sex.

An indignant retort from senior female judges rebutted his claim but, as has been noted, only in respect of oral sex….no all embracing rebuttal has been forthcoming.

Then we have the evangelical whose wife speaks in tongues…the video on Facebook has been removed but not before it had gone viral…and a horde of more mainstream candidates.

No Screaming Lord Sutch for Costa Rica.

The local internet groups have been infested by paid ads from those wishing to represent local people in the National Assembly…an ex mayor proclaims that it is time for a native son to represent the canton, forgetting that people have far from fond memories of his mismanagement of its affairs when in power.

What has he done for the canton? Filled in the holes in the athletic track, apparently. So that’s where all our taxes went…

Another bright spark is using the slogan which brought the retiring President to power  – despite representing a rival party – in the hope that people will think it is more of the same….

And the omnipresent candidate for Liberation is promising water for all.

Water is a sore subject here. Thanks to dire mismanagement and neglect there is a water shortage, incredible as it may seem in an area alive with springs and rivers. So we have been treated to photographs of said candidate standing in front of waterfalls and crouching in front of water tanks…when asked on a ‘phone in exactly how he intended to provide water for all he said he would have to study the question with the Water Board, the very people responsible for the mess up….

But people here have other things on their minds…that public nuisance The Neighbour, he of the crisp white hat with the curly brim, has surfaced again.

He had been quiet, not to speak of invisible, for quite some time, given his problems with the various local Mr. Bigs  after losing their money in a casino, but he has emerged to public view once more…on the arm of a lady in her thirties who had consented to marry him.

To general astonishment as she is

A, half his age and

B, generally held to be in possession of her senses.

He had been seen a couple of times, driving round the Three Valleys in her company, but he had installed himself in her comfortable house on the other side of the town while waiting for the ceremony, following which, totally pie eyed and full of himself, he brought her on another tour to introduce her to those who were still on speaking terms with him.

A distinct failure of judgement on his part as she thus learned that the farms he had pointed out to her as being his were, in fact, those of the people whom they were visiting…

It is possible that the atmosphere had chilled somewhat after that, but The Neighbour, of course, had to excel himself.

A couple of days later he was eating the dinner she had prepared when he took a telephone call on his mobile from one of his barfly friends.

Yes, he bawled, he was set up for life now! It was like  having a free pass to a brothel with the food thrown in….

The food might have been thrown in, but The Neighbour was thrown out, on the spot, on his ear and his possessions thrown after him.

The marriage lasted five days.

The lady is breathing fire and loaded for bear.

Much more exciting than some bald bugger crouching in front of a water tank…!

Night of the Long Quills

The Ashes series ended early in the evening…my time. England collapsed again…even the captain going down to a bug caught by eating jelly and ice cream at his son’s birthday party.

Hang the selectors!

Hang the England – and Wales – Cricket Board who have sold the game down the river for a mess of Murdoch’s pottage!

Hang the ‘experts’ who ruin every promising young cricketer they get in their clutches by sending them to the gym to produce huge torsos on little legs and then rub every spark of originality out of their game!

Hang the sports psychiatrists and sports nutricionists!

Bring back Geoffrey Boycott! He might be in his seventies but his mind is young and his analysis is spot on.

boycott

And with him in charge the old guard of players hanging on to their lucrative central contracts might have to earn the money they rake in or make way for the youngsters. The way things are these days those youngsters might be drawing a pension before they get their chance.

Remarkably, after venting my spleen, I went to sleep as soon as my head had touched the pillow that night. Note to self…vent spleen more often…

Only to be awoken an hour or so later by the thuds as the bulk of Stein – one of the American Staffords – hit the bedroom window.

Not fancying the entry of Stein, who weighs more than forty kilos, surrounded by shards of glass I put on my dressing gown, took up the torch and went out to investigate.

No, he was not keen to join us…he had other prey in mind.

Casting the beam of the torch upwards I saw something clinging to the  eaves…

Putain de merde! A porcupine!

porcupine

Not what you want to meet on a dark night…and you certainly don’t want your dog to meet them.

When threatened they cast their spines which have tiny barbs, making them very difficult to extract…treat your dog at once if you want to avoid infection.

Too late to do much except to put Stein in his pen to avoid problems…such a good dog, he went quietly despite the attraction of the prey.

Back to bed.

One hour later, it was Bunter, the other American Stafford, kicking up.

The blasted porcupine had moved to the far side of the house and Bunter was at full stretch to try to catch it.

Bunter in the pen likewise..though with more difficulty as he is still – and always will be –  just a huge pup. More than forty kilos of pup.

Back to bed.

More uproar. The porcupine was in the rafters over the balcony and the thugs disapproved.

Thugs locked into the house, and peace finally prevailing.

Slept, dreaming of ECB worthies hanging from lamp posts.

The morning brought counsel.

The porcupine was still ensconced in a corner of the balcony. The dogs stilled wished to have at it.

Danilo arrived and we decided to trap the animal…which is a protected species…and take it to the appropriate authorities.

Dogs calmed with boiled eggs.

Momentarily.

Danilo collects an empty dustbin and balances on the wall of the swimming pool.

I take up a long pole and disturb the porcupine…which is displeased. A volley of spines is cast while I try to  encourage it down the electricity cable to which it is clinging.

It is the size of a small dog, its paws can cling well and its tail is prehensile.

Not to speak of the spines. Volley after volley fall about Danilo who is underneath it.

Poor creature…it is terrified, chattering its teeth and grunting…

Finally he traps it…then puts the barbeque grill on top of the dustbin and ties it shut before taking it to the car.

Not a passenger with whom one would care to share the space.

We drive carefully over to the local Environment Ministry Office.The door is locked.

Danilo calls out that we are here.

A woman answers that they are not open yet.

Yes you are. It is past eight o’ clock.

But they are in a meeting.

That’s all right. We have a porcupine here…we can just let it loose in the office for them to deal with later…

The door is unlocked and a chap  comes out with a vetinary cage.

Just give me a hand, will you?

The porcupine is unwilling to leave the dustbin and thus ensues a ballet of its feet and our hands trying to dislodge it without being spiked.

Finally it is rehomed and the cage is placed alongside that of a possum which has been brought in with machete wounds and is awaiting the arrival of the vet…

Both animals, once signed off fit, will be released in the National Park, some fifty  kilometres down the road from us .  Costa Rica cares for its wildlife.

We return home.

Leo is wondering why his breakfast is late…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

U.K. Repel Boarders Force

Mersea-Island-Essex-1024x609

It appears that the British government…if one can so designate the shambles…have made a blunder.

Having made redundant numbers of those serving in what is now called the Border Force which is supposed to protect the sceptred isle from foreign incursions in the absence of the army which is busy doing America’s bidding elsewhere, it seems that it has dawned on the cretins that said sceptred isle is fairly vulnerable to foreign incursions as, like the various invaders before them, the current lot do not tend to arrive at Dover passport in hand.

Desperate measures have been tried.

Existing staff have been paid overtime…be still my neoliberal heart.

Totally inexperienced agency staff have been hired…neoliberal heart start beating again to the rhythm of private profit from the public purse.

All to no good.

So now they are considering calling for volunteers.

The press has jumped on the idea, ridiculing it with images from ‘Dad’s Army‘, the comedy television show about the wartime Home Guard, featuring  Corporal Jones, veteran of the campaigns in the Sudan, who is firmly of the opinion that Johnny Foreigner – whatever his hue – does not like it up him.

It being the bayonet.

corporal jones

Before going ahead the shambles might like to consider a pilot project currently operating in southern England…in an area once controlled by the Hawkhurst Gang in the eighteenth century, when smuggling was as big a business as now…but then involved booze rather than people.

Let us eavesdrop on a meeting of the committee…..

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen….and let us show our thanks to Bob the landlord by ordering a round of drinks.

Right…let me just check…two Teachers, one Bells,  two pints, one port and lemon, one dry sherry and one gin and campari.

Thank you, Bob…oh, that’s nice……crackers!

Cheers!

Right. Do we need to approve the notes of the previous meeting?

What do you mean, what meeting, Deidre? You must remember, we had it in your flat!

Bob! Another gin and campari, please.

Fine. Passed nem con.

Now, Dave, could you bring us up to date?

Yes, Mr. Chairman. As we all know, the creek is a weak point. There there  is no marina, no harbour master, no customs office and yachts come and go as they please.

Indeed they do! Just look at Mr. Saxon who takes his cat with him when he sails to the Bahamas every year. That cat never goes into quarantine and goodness only knows what it frequents with out there…

Bob! Another gin and campari, please…

So we need to keep it under observation.

Mr. Chairman, may I suggest co opting Mrs Bracegirdle onto the committee? Her back bedroom window overlooks the creek and she owns a pair of binoculars which belonged to her late husband.

But would she be willing to sacrifice her time, do you think?

Oh, certainly…it would just mean her moving from the front bedroom window where she keeps an eye on that new restaurant which replaced the fish and chip shop.

I’ve had my doubts about that place..full of fifth columnists.

Well just look at the customers! Coming down from London after the place had a write up in ‘The Guardian’….

‘The Guardian’! Tells you all you want to know! People who would turn their noses up at skate and chips but don’t turn a hair when their food comes with muck smeared over the plate….say what you like, Kevin could be a funny bugger but his fish and chips were the best!

And just look at the owner! Wears his hair in a bun…no hairnet, you notice. Kevin always wore a hairnet under his hat….and cavorts with those Italian waitresses…

Hang on..Bob? Two Teachers, one Bells, two pints, a port and lemon, a dry sherry and a double gin and campari.

Thanks!

What is all this about Italian waitresses? And buns?

Well, that is why I suggested co opting Mrs. Bracegirdle. She knows all about his goings on with the waitresses while he is pretending to be gay to please the London lot…

What goings on?

Well…out the back of the restaurant…she says it is very continental…

But how can she see what goes on out the back? Her windows overlook the street…

If she crouches down she can see the reflection from Mr. Harbottle’s greenhouse next door…

And what does she mean, ‘pretending to be gay’…no…on second thoughts…

So do you think she could be persuaded to move to the back bedroom?

She will do her duty by her country, certainly…but she might need a thermos flask…

Bob! Same again please…

Right! So much for the watching…but what do we do if she sees some illegal immigrants coming ashore? Like those Vegans, hitchhiking the galaxy….

Call the police?

What? The police? As much use as a chocolate teapot.

You’ll ring them up and some sarky so and so will ask why you think they are illegal immigrants and accuse you of racism.

No, we’ll have to make a citizen’s arrest.

Can you still do that? I thought you got into trouble if you tried to arrest someone…the police are very touchy, you know.

Yes…too idle to do anything themselves but they don’t like you showing them up…

We’ll have to say we thought there would be a breach of the peace…well, there will be one if Mr. Armstrong is there with his cosh…and that we were trying to prevent them leaving the scene…

And we’ll have to watch our language. Don’t want anyone claiming racism.

Then you’d better not have Mr. Harris out there…remember the uproar at the fete when he called the ice cream seller a spic?

So we need to cover the creek every night after Mrs. Bracegirdle goes to bed.

And in the winter we need to cover it while she is watching her soaps in the early evening…ideal time to smuggle people ashore while the nation is glued to ‘Eastenders’.

So that’s one person down there from about eleven o’clock onwards and if he sees anything suspicious he calls us out.

Call Mr. Armstrong first…he lives nearest and he can keep them busy with his cosh while the others assemble.

It’s a bit parky out there at night…

We’ll have to wrap up warm and lurk in the bus shelter.

There’s a terrible smell of pee in that shelter…

Take a bottle of bleach with you.

Are you sure about bleach? I thought vinegar was the thing…

Or hydrogen peroxide…

The council should  never have closed the toilets….

Well, I think we’ve taken things as far as we can tonight…Dave, would you make up a list of able bodied members willing to go on the watch rota?

Certainly, Mr. Chairman. I’ll make the rounds and report at the next meeting.

Any other business? No?

O.K. Bob, one for the road all round and can you call a taxi for Deidre?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Guid New Year Tae Ane and A’

Here comes the first foot…bearing coal for the outer man and whisky for the inner…

first footing

Let us find a new voice for the  year to come…

‘For last year’s words belong to last year’s language

And next year’s words await another voice.’

Let us find a voice for ourselves. for those whose voices are never heard, and may we speak for freedom and justice.

 

But not forget the fun of seeing in the New Year… years ago German friends introduced us to their cult New Year clip

Dinner for One

We too watch it every year..as much in celebration of our German friends as for the absurdity itself…part of the ritual of the passing of the old year.

And so we remember…

Happy we’ve all been together

 

And look forward.

 

Many thanks to all of you kind enough to follow …and to comment…on this blog. I enjoy your company.

Lang may your lums reek.