The Effinghams were in town. If you know then you know, if you don’t know then it’s not for me to tell you. I didn’t get where I am today, Reggie, by explaining.
Took a rather splendid couple of hours to turn the Cardinal about-face the other day. Not, as the more cynical of you might suspect, a disastrous multi-point manoeuvre, but a simple cruise-ette up to the nearest winding hole and back. Some five miles. When the boat’s (considerably) longer than the water is wide you can’t just bung in a handbrake or J-turn. Hecksville, it takes two or three bites at the tiller to turn even in the average winding hole. Back almost to the inch in our starting mooring, but we’ll soon be a real gone kid again; things to be (elsewhere), people to do.
This morning it is raining. The sort of rain that is obviously going to be falling for hours and never varies in intensity. I hope never to be in conversation with aliens noting that we are composed mostly of H2O, utterly dependent on the stuff, and asking from where we obtain our supplies…
‘Oh, it just falls from the sky on a random basis. We let most of it go to waste and back into the global cycle again, and the fresh stuff that we do have access to in rivers and canals gets raw human sewage pumped into it by companies that we pay vast sums of money to to not pump raw sewage into our supply. A third of anything that makes it through that process is wasted in leaks and the rest is dosed with fluoride. We generally drink dinosaur p*ss filtered through French companies such as Evian. Come back! Why are you running back towards your flying saucer and shouting Doris – start the FTL Engines, we are leaving…’
Autumn, such as it is, is sliding into Winter, such as it will be. Natural long-term cycles, Father Nature’s whimsical plan, the Grand Solar Minimum and manifold other happens-with-or-without-the-actions-of-hairless-industrial-apes factors are blurring our seasons. Concomitant Seasoning Affective Disorder With Added Species-Wide Insanity is on the horizon and pedalling its little tricycle furiously towards me, ting ting tinging the bell on the handlebars.
I shall be spending hours sitting nose to flame with my little hygge-koselig candle, and grasping my friluftsliv wherever and whenever I can, when I am not under two duvets and a pile of “Native American” wool blankets, adjusting my crocheted nose-cosy and wondering whether it really was wise to leave the tub of Country Life Slightly Salted on my head under my Thinsulate sleeping-beanie so that it will be “spreadable” for toast in the morning. I’ve lived in a (splendid) caravan for years; I know enough to pull the wool over my own eyes.
England continues to be cringe-inducingly tragic in its politics, and for this I would like to extend my sincere applebogies to any and all of you trapped in The Abroad who may inadvertently have witnessed that which, once seen and heard, may not be expunged. I maintain that Those Who Be, while thoroughly amoral and self-serving, lying on the Bell Curve betwixt Clinical Sociopath and Clinical Psychopath, are not – in the main, there are exceptions – so stupid as they obviously believe that we (the peasants) are. The underlying purpose is always money, power, and sweaty clandestine collisions with the youngest, fittest, unpaid intern possible, but purpose there always is, in everything that they do. Nothing is random.
The difficulty lies not in identifying their duplicity, but in identifying the purpose of that duplicity.
Never ever believe what you’re told, only believe what you can see in action.
Today’s sermon from the mount was from The Book Of Revolving Revelations, the sad tale of St Grumpatious of Cardinal; Bewilderment Is Mine Sayeth Eton And Rugby. Something is afoot when Diane Abbott would be the best candidate for Chancellor and Cameron appears to have possessed the largest moral compass (just ask that unfortunate orally-raped roasted pig).
Ten thousand years ago England physically separated itself from the mainland of Europe with the flooding (by Father Nature, no Human effort involved) of Doggerland. Our current task would appear to be separating ourselves from the last vestiges of sanity.
A process that Dr John Campbell, long-time eager and energetic expounder of Establishment ethos, appears to be struggling with, as (even) he gradually, eventually, embraces the elderly elephant in the room. Poor chap, he’s done immense damage in his immense efforts to do good, and due to his similarly immense sincerity I do fear for his health as the penny finally drops. Will he, like that Welsh chap who penned the minutiae of most of their “El Lockdown &etc” legislation in somewhat indecent and unprofessional haste, soon be ‘sadly found in the woods near his home‘? Just a(nother and another and another and another) coincidence, nothing that you want to see here, move on, move on, move on…
Talking of vestiges, I mun dig out my selection of (lightly-stained) winter vestiges string, vestiges horse-hair, and vestiges cotton from their vacuum-packed storage. That, and nip along to the chandlery for another One Gallon tub of Slatheron’s Patent Goose Grease.
Slatheron’s Patent is the only goose grease tested on a wide variety of laboratory animals and certified by the Board of Trade as safe for use in groinal and armpit areas, effective in maintaining thermal undisequilibrium down to -20°Celsingham if liberally applied.
I love looking at the countryside. Can’t step on most of it of course, it’s all privately owned, but it is splendid to look at. The scene in the phomatograph above is where some years since I saw a full-blown horn, hounds and pinks fox “hunt” passing. Some of the hounds were so far astray (and out of control) that they were on the towpath. The untouchable, unidentifiable and unspeakable in pursuit of the inedible, on the inaccessible, and still largely unfathomable.
Lots of magnificent, fully-grown trees about in England; not so many (not any) freshly-planted saplings. Still, who cares about the future, eh? I’m sure that there’s a profit-motive buried somewhere deep inside unfettered Capitalism that will take care of that.
Given the weather today it’s only the hodilay boats that are moving, having set themselves silly mileage targets and needing to get the boat back to base or away as quickly as possible from base. The majority of other boats are moored, chimneys smoking gently as the stoves attempt to bring a little of that hygge to the cabins – or, more accurately, because the boat dogs took matters into their own paws and lit the thing themselves while their human charges slug-a-bed.
I shan’t be crawling back under the duvet until late this evening. I shall instead ward off the greyness of it all by slapping a Vesta Boil-in-the-Bag Squirrel Curry atop the stove, warming two of my best feet near the flames, and re-reading a Hornblower.
Will someone please let me know when the siren sounds and we’re all to walk back to the Rift Valley and climb back into the trees and assume a renewed state of blessed extinction.
Ian H., Ex-Member of the I-Spy Club.