Sunday, October 30, 2011

Jenny The Hamster

I am constantly astounded at the stupidity and arrogance of humans. They really are the most obnoxious living things on the planet. You're not of course. You've proved that you have excellent taste and intelligence simply by choosing to read my blog. But as for the rest of you - what a bunch of arse-holes!  Let me give you an example. A human dives into the ocean where there are known to be great white sharks. He swims around doing a more than passable impression of a seal and then surprise surprise he gets eaten. Then the rest of the human race wants to kill the shark for doing what nature intended him to do - eat things that look like seals. It's like my male staff going out and spending all day in the sun unprotected, then being shocked and horrified when he gets sunburned and insists that the sun be turned off.

To make matters worse you humans are the cause of these sharks coming closer to the shore in the first place, because you've eaten all the damned fish so that the sharks have to swim closer to the shore to get a feed. Look, if you don't want to be eaten by something large and wet stay out of the ocean. You're not likely to be attacked by a great white shark in a shopping mall are you? True you might be trampled by a one hundred and fifty kilogram teenager coming out of McDonalds - but that's the just the risk you take, you're in their environment, now and again you're going to get trampled. Just don't be surprised when it happens. Okay, rant over for now, just until you humans do something else stupid though.

Last night my male staff received a phone call from his mad sister in England. Mad sister said that their mother is very ill again. The brain tumour that there mother was diagnosed with back in May this year (See ) has started to do it's evil work and she's had to go into hospital again. She's been having seizures and is more confused than my male staff when he's confronted with one of those new fangled "computer thingys". So once again we're packing to travel around the world. This time my female staff and Badger are staying behind, my female staff to work on her shoe collection and Badger to work on his ever expanding butt. I'm looking forward to visiting my male staff's mum in hospital again. I had so much fun last time. (See ) I'm also looking forward to see my male staff's mum. She's a lovely lady who adores little fluffy things like yours truly. I love hearing about the time she revived my male staff's pet Hamster when my male staff was little (About twenty nine I think.) Jenny the hamster was seemingly an ex-hamster until my male staff's mum took her into the warmth of her own bed, massaged her little heart and dosed her with brandy through a dropper. Lo and behold, she came back to life, resurrected like Jesus himself - only with bigger cheek pouches. Jenny lived for several months after that. I think she died of an alcoholism related illness eventually.

Ah well. Back to the packing. See you in England.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Festival Victims

The Chinese call them Festival Victims. They are people who feel obliged to buy all their friends and relatives cards and presents for every festival - and the Chinese have a lot of festivals. They've not helped themselves by adding Christian festivals to their list, like Easter and Christmas. Festival Victims are constantly short of both time and money. They spend all their money on gifts and cards and all their time shopping for them. Here in Australia we don't have as many festivals, we just make the ones we do have last longer.

Christmas now lasts from mid-September to Boxing Day and Easter lasts from mid-January till whenever Easter Monday is. Usually a Monday funnily enough. In between there are birthdays, Valentines Day, Fathers' Day, Mothers' Day, even Halloween. Have I missed anything? Probably. All these offer endless opportunities to send you broke, or at the very least put you in debt for the rest of your life. My male staff took me through our local shopping mall the other day. He'd normally avoid going to the mall as though it was a morgue full of bloated corpses. (Actually many of the occupants are indeed bloated and on a hot day a lot of them smell like corpses.) But on this occasion it proved to be the quickest route to the bank. He had some money to deposit and he couldn't fit it into his wallet because it was so full of moths. So we strode through the mall with me sitting on my male staff's shoulder, taking lengthy detours around the huge butts of porky people pushing shopping trollies full of junk food and toilet rolls and protecting our ears from the high pitched squalling of snotty-nosed brats throwing tantrums because mummy dared to refuse to buy them a seventh doughnut. (Mummy will probably end up in court for abusing the little shit's human rights.) Then my male staff looked up and I heard him gasp and breath something that sounded like "Plucking Gel!" I looked around expecting to see a shop selling some sort of aid to de-feathering chickens, but no. He had seen Christmas decorations hanging from the ceiling.

Remember, this is mid-October. We hadn't even got to Halloween yet. That's another so called festival that gets up my male staff's goat. He says that when he was a kid they'd occasionally have a small party with apple bobbing and fancy dress. In good years they'd use real apples for apple bobbing. When things weren't so good they had to use stones, which of course didn't float so drownings were common. But he said the kids didn't let the odd death spoil the party. It was all part of the fun. Now kids between two and twenty-five years old feel entitled to wander around their neighbourhood begging from door to door, dropping dog poo through the letter boxes of anyone who refuses to give in to their demands. Apparently it's called "Trick or Treat." My male staff calls it extortion with menaces.

Anyway, finally we reached the bank amid a flurry of dark mutterings from my male staff about it only being October and that if he were Prime Minister he would ban Christmas decorations from being displayed until the tenth of December at the earliest and that any Easter eggs that appear on shop shelves prior to the first of March will be confiscated and distributed among the poor and homeless.................and him. He says all this legislation would be passed within a month of his being voted into office, unless the Christmas recess gets in the way of course. In which case it would probably have to wait until after Easter.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Home Sweet Home

The best thing about returning home to Australia from a long trip overseas is that you no longer feel obliged to tip anyone. At least that's what my male staff says, but then he's notoriously tight fisted. The best tip he ever gave anyone was "Be good to your mother." That went down very well with the porter at Nairobi airport who was so impressed with this wise advice that he dropped my female staff's thirty kilogramme suitcase on my male staff's foot. Personally I just enjoy getting home to find that all our friends have survived in my absence. Paolo and Biggles the budgies came back from the Pet Resort in one piece. We were all a bit worried about them because the resort owner was keeping her pet python in the same room. Despite this they survived, either that or they got eaten on the first day and the resort owner bought two identical budgies before my staff returned.

Mary the half tame Magpie is fine, though she's hatched a couple of chicks since we left and they follow her around all day squeaking at the top of their voices and the only way to shut them up is to cram their beaks full of worms. Once she's done this the little buggers go off quite happily and find their own worms for five minutes until they get bored and start squeaking at Mary again. Poor thing. She's looking a bit harassed at the moment. She says she's looking forward to chasing the little bastards away when their old enough. Her husband - Manfred, is nowhere to be seen. Mary says that this is typical and that he's probably over at his friend's nest swilling beer and watching porn.

Bubble and Barnabas the two butcher birds are okay too. They look so alike that my staff find it difficult to tell them apart. They play on this fact at feeding time and often come separately in order to confuse my staff, which let's face it is not that hard. They'll feed one who'll then fly away. Five minutes later there'll be another butcher bird on the deck and my staff won't know whether or not it's the one they've just fed, so they dish out more food. This goes on for a while until one or other of the birds says something. That gives the game away because they have different voices. Barnabas always sounds hoarse, as though he's been yelling for an hour or two, and Bubble sounds like a butcher bird should.
Then there are the two guinea fowl - Patch and Peanut. They don't really belong to my staff at all. Our neighbours had a flock of fourteen who used to spend more time in our garden than in their own. They were quite useful in keeping the tick and leech numbers down to mere plague proportions, but then the neighbours moved away and couldn't be bothered rounding up the guinea fowl. They were left to fend for themselves, which they did quite admirably until a fox discovered them and thought all his Christmases had come at once. Now there are only two left - Patch and Peanut. They are obviously the wariest and wisest of the flock. Mind you, wise is only a relative term when it comes to guinea fowl. They make Badger look smart. Still, it was nice to see them when we got home, even if they did swear at us when we got out of car because their memories are so feeble that they didn't recognise us.

It's odd that nothing truly calamitous happened while we were away. Something major nearly alway occurs when my male staff leaves the country. He was en-route to London when 9/11 happened. He was in Botswana at the time of the 2004 tsunami. He was in Tokyo when they had an earthquake and didn't even know until he got home and he was in Borneo when Julia Gillard stabbed Kevin Rudd in the back and pinched his job. So all in all it was a relief to get home to find that nothing much had changed. Julia Gillard is still Prime Minister and her government is still incompetent. Tony Abbott is still leader of the opposition and is still certifiably insane. Even Colonel Gaddafi had the good manners to wait until we returned to Australia before getting himself killed.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pink Lard

One of the most entertaining things about visiting Kenya is listening to the American tourists speaking Swahili.
The Kenyans tried their best to teach them to say Jambo (Hello), but it never sounded quite right with an American accent, especially those from the "Deeyup sayuth". It always came out as "Jayumboh."
 "Almost." The patient Kenyan would say. "But it's supposed to rhyme with Rambo."
 "Thayats what ahh sayud - Jayumboh."
 "Mmmm. Try to rhyme it with mambo then."
 "Okay." Says the slightly less patient Kenyan. "Let's try something else. Habari za asabuhi. (Good morning.)
 "Habairy zah ayasabbooeye."
 Impatient Kenyan. "Whatever!"

Still, at least they tried the local language bless 'em. And at least they are quiet when on safari so as not to scare the animals. It was easy to tell when a group of Spanish tourists were approaching the lodge in which we were staying. Their arrival was preceded by a stampede of all types of animals running to get away from their constant yabbering. I thought my staff could talk, but they are rank amateurs compared to our Spanish friends. It would be an absolute miracle if they ever saw an animal at all - apart from Badger and I. They yakked non-stop from morning till night. Obviously they thought it more important to discuss the price of paella, who the latest matador to get a horn up his bottom passage was, why anybody ever thought Picasso could paint, why Kenyans can't make a decent cafe con leche, how on earth "Barthelona" manged to lose to Real Madrid - at home. In short anything except why it is a good idea just to shut up for five minutes so that you can see the animals that you've just paid thousands of euros and travelled thousands of miles for.

Anyway, my staff didn't really care because they had their own safari vehicle. This meant that we could ride along with them as long as we promised not to tease the elephants. Frankly I was surprised that we were allowed out of our room following the debacle in Prague. See We were in a part of Kenya called Samburu, which is Swahili for "Second home of the talkative Spaniards." It was very hot and dry, which meant that lettuce was in short supply. There were plenty of thorn trees though, and I'm taking serious thorns here. Elephants use them as toothpicks. There were dik diks everywhere you looked. The dik dik is a tiny antelope, not much bigger than a guinea pig. They live in pairs and mate for life. If one dies the other simply pines to death. It's horrible. My female staff wanted to pick them all up and squeeze them - as if they haven't got enough to worry about with leopards, cheetahs, lions and eagles the size of small commercial aircraft. My male staff told us that if you see one dik dik on it's own it's just a dik, but I think the only dik in Samburu was him.

So we spent a bizarre few days in Kenya. My staff went out in their safari vehicle twice a day to look at animals when they could have stayed in our room and looked at Badger and I for nothing. At mealtimes we listened to the Kenyans' despairing attempts to teach the Americans Swahili and the Spaniards drone on about whatever Spaniards drone on about. Never mind. We're home now thank heavens. At last Badger and I can sleep in our own beds and don't have to share one with my staff. As the trip went on my staff's girths expanded expanentially' leaving us with less and less room and more and more chance of being squished when one or the other rolled over in their sleep. Let me tell you, the ever present danger of being crushed under mountains of pink lard does not make for a peaceful night's slumber. In fact I think I overheard our Kenyan guide saying that Samburu had no hippos until my staff showed up.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Cavy up my Cassock

My staff recently took Badger and I to Prague for a few days. Prague is the capital city of the Czech Republic and the first thing that struck me was that they need to change their national flag to something more appropriate. The flag they have is too dull. Badger and I came up with something much better. What they should have is a large sausage and two dumplings on a beer coloured background. The beer coloured background represents the fact that the Czechs are the world’s largest consumers of beer per capita. The two dumplings and the sausage should be arranged to form a representation of the male genitalia and serves to represent both the national food and the Czech Republic’s largest export – internet pornography.

Prague’s a lovely old city, though it’s cobbled streets are a bit rough on the claws, but at least we shouldn’t have to pay a visit to the vet for nail trimming for a while. There were lots of old buildings to interest my staff, but the market was all sausages and no lettuce, so we found that a bit boring. Eventually my staff tired of wandering around gazing at old things. Don’t know why we had to go all the way to Prague for them to do that. They could have done that at home simply by looking in the mirror or at each other. Mind you, it has to be said that many of the old buildings in Prague are better preserved than my staff. So, eventually my staff sat down at an outdoor cafĂ© and ordered a beer each. Seeing the size of the glass of beer – easily enough to drown a large hairy guinea pig in – Badger and I decided to do a little exploring on our own. So while my staff were busy swilling their amber nectar and collecting white froth on the end of their noses we scuttled away across the market square in the direction of a large church which had two pointy spires.

Once inside we found a whole lot of men in frocks carrying candles and before you could say “Cavy up my Cassock” they had cavies up their cassocks. What fun that was. They man who’s cassock I invaded was so shocked that he set fire to the cassock of the man in front of him with his candle. At that point we thought we’d better make ourselves scarce, so we scarpered up the steps leading up to the twin spires. It was a long way up those steps but we were fired by adrenalin due to the half dozen or so men in frocks threatening us with unspeakable acts with their candles. I’ve always maintained that religion causes nothing but trouble. We had no problem eluding our pursuers who had no answer to our athlissisim………athleticcissm………athlettis…………fitness, and we soon found ourselves at the top of the spires from where we had a splendid view of the square below and of my staff who had finished their beer and appeared to be locked in animated conversation with members of the local constabulary – and the police too. 

It turned out that my staff had reported us missing – once they’d finished guzzling beer.
Unfortunately, probably due to the language barrier, (My staff only speak Gibberish.) the police got the wrong end of the stick and assumed that we were their children (Heaven forbid.) and mobilised most of the force and a couple of helicopters in a bid to find us before we fell into the hands of people even more perverted than my staff. The cops were not amused when it turned out they were looking for a couple of furry fugitives and arrested my staff for wasting police time. They were going to charge them for the cost of two hours helicopter time, but my male staff burst into tears, so they released them both to get a bit of peace and quiet, plus my male staff borrowed the chief constables handkerchief and the police station had entirely run out of paper tissues. I rather liked Prague.