Sunday, September 28, 2014

Pull Your Fingers Out

Stop it this minute! Did you hear me? I said stop it right now! Yes, you - mankind down there on earth.  Did you think I can't see you from beyond the Rainbow Bridge?  I can you know. I can see everything you do.  Honestly, I've only been gone a few weeks and already many of you have forgotten everything I've told you.  Stop fighting! And you - the moronic, cowardly zombie in the black bed sheet, put that knife down and let that poor innocent hostage go.  You can't just go around lopping folk's heads off like that.  And for what?  Come on, tell me. What do you hope to achieve apart from turning what's left of the civilised world against you and making life impossible for the vast majority of decent, peace loving Muslims?  Hah! Call yourselves followers of Islam! The only thing you're following is your own lust for power and money.  You should be ashamed of yourselves. What would your poor old mother think if she could see you now with that knife at the throat of an aid worker? Never mind your mother, what about Allah?

And you needn't look so smug either Mr O'Barmer, Mr Cameron, Mr Hollande and Mr Abbott.  I can see you bombing seven shades of bush chocolate out of those ISIL fools.  Yes I know they're just a bunch of criminal gangsters who need to be stopped, but you know as well as I do that bombing alone isn't going to do the trick and that sooner or later it's going to take troops on the ground to push them back through the gates of Hell where they belong, so stop telling your voters that it won't happen and don't think for one minute that the Iraqi security forces are up to the task.  Hell's bells! They could barely control a slightly peeved croquet audience.

Yes Mr O'Barmer I know this is all the fault of George Dubya, Tony Blair and the "Man of Steel" (Kinda cold and grey.) John Howard.  They were very naughty to defy international law and invade Iraq in the first place.  Even a guinea pig could see that it could only end in tears, not to mention a whacking great power vacuum.  Now then, I want Britain and the USA to go and stand in the naughty corner until I say its okay to come out for propping up and arming Saddam in the first place.  You never learn do you?  NEVER!  Just because you and he shared a dislike of the senile old Ayatollah next door doesn't mean that he was ever a good guy.  It's very dangerous to use one despot to contain another.  That's something else that most guinea pigs know and you humans obviously don't.  A despot is a despot after all and there's no such thing as a good despot.  Still, if George, Tony and John had only left Iraq alone they would not be facing this crisis now and there's a fair chance that Libya and Syria wouldn't have gone pear shaped either.

It's more complicated than that, of course it is, but I like to keep it simple when explaining things to less developed life forms.  Sadly the Middle East and North Africa is chock full of young men frustrated by repressive regimes, youths ripe for brain washing by so called Islamic extremists who actually have nothing to do with Islam and everything to do with criminality.  Then there's the Palestine issue too and the West's (Particularly the USA) unbalanced approached there.  Israel seems able to flout United Nations' resolutions with impunity while the Palestinian regime only has to pass bottom wind to be roundly condemned.  Of course Hamas are not helping their own cause by declaring that they want to destroy the state of Israel.  The powerful Jewish lobby in the States are never going to stand for that, nor should they, but they do need to recognise that Benjamin Netanyahu is probably a war criminal in the class of  Slobodan Milosevic.  How ironic that an Israeli Prime Minister of all people should put himself in the position of being accused of committing crimes against humanity.   

In any case all these problems are dwarfed by the issue that poses more of a threat to the World's security than ISIL, Al Qaida, Hezbollah, Boko Haram and Jemaah Islamiah put together.  Yes, it's our old friend Climate Change.  Isn't it about time you humans decided to do something serious about it rather than fiddling about the edges and whinging about the cost of saving the planet.  This issue has the potential to start more wars than any other.  Think of all the disputes over water and food for a start, let alone the flood of refugees when certain parts of the planet become uninhabitable.  What a total cock up you humans have made of things since I left to cross the Rainbow Bridge.  I'd come back to sort it all out for you but I'm having too much fun here.  So, you're on your own guys. pull your fingers out.

BACI'S BALONEY
Well, I've got no idea wat Uncal Billy is torking abowt, but wat I do no is that if all those stoopid ISIL peepul had a kupple of ginny pigs eech they woodent have the time or the munny to go around behedding peepul.  They'd be too bizzy werking twenty two ours a day so they cood pay for the piggies' food and hay and bedding and stuff.




Monday, September 22, 2014

Distracted Drivers Are Dangerous

On Saturday morning my male staff fired up the old GPS (Guinea Pig Seeker), loaded Baci into Grandma Pig's Mercedes (It gives the piggy passengers a smoother ride than the Getz.) and set sail for the Queensland Guinea Pig Refuge, which for normal people is about an hour and a half's drive. For my male staff it's only about forty minutes when he's driving the Mercedes because he forgets that he's not in the Getz. In the Getz one cannot possibly accidentally exceed the speed limit of one hundred and ten kilometres per hour on the Bruce Highway because once you get to about eighty kilometres an hour everything starts to shake rattle and roll. The wing mirrors begin to flap, the windscreen wipers suddenly flip out to the either side and to the alarm of the driver of the following vehicle the rear hatch springs open, depositing whatever was in the back onto the road. We once lost my female staff's dad that way without my staff noticing, and let me tell you, he was not very happy when he finally caught up with us.  Fortunately his wheelie-walker exited the car at the same time so he wasn't greatly inconvenienced.  They only realised that he wasn't there when it dawned on them that he hadn't complained about my male staff's driving for twenty minutes.

I believe I may have mentioned this before, but my male staff is labouring under the misapprehension that the Getz has automatic transmission.  The car salesman told him this to get rid of him.  It hasn't of course, it's a manual, but my male staff thinks he doesn't have to change gear and believes the engine is supposed to scream in agony when doing eighty kilometres an hour in first gear with the rev-counter firmly lodged in the pretty red sector.

However, in the Mercedes, which really in an automatic, my male staff can cruise serenely along at one hundred and sixty kilometres an hour and the superior suspension irons out all the bumps, even when he makes one of his short detours into the median strip having become distracted by one of the  illuminated roadside signs that says "Focus! Distracted drivers are dangerous."  Another distraction was the flashing blue and red lights on the car behind him.  He tried to ignore it because the driver was obviously a deranged drug addict.  He may well have been, but he was also a police officer.  With some difficulty he overhauled the Mercedes and in a none too friendly fashion indicated that my male staff might at some point in the journey like to pull over so that the policeman could have have a chat with him.

Having stopped (In the fast lane of course to avoid unnecessary swerving to get to the hard shoulder.) my male staff lowered the window just has the policeman arrived.
 "Good morning constable." Said my male staff cheerily.
 "Do you have a driving license sir?" Asked the policeman, somewhat less cheerily. 
 "Yes thanks." Replied my male staff. "Is it okay if I go now?"  The policeman turned an odd shade of purple and started to fiddle with his Taser.
 "No sir, it's not okay." He said with remarkable restraint. "What is your reason for exceeding the speed limit by fifty kilometres an hour today?"
 "Golly! Was I really going that fast officer? I had no idea, but then I wasn't really concentrating. I was too busy stroking my guinea pig." My male staff pointed to Baci who was sitting on the back seat amid a pile of bush chocolate happily munching away on a stick of celery."
 "Your guinea pig sir? You were leaning into the back seat, stroking your guinea pig while doing one hundred and sixty kilometres per hour?"
 "Well yes," admitted my male staff. "He's a bit nervous."
 "I'm not surprised." Said the policeman.
 "No officer, you don't understand.  I'm in a hurry because I'm taking Baci........"
 "Baci?" Interrupted the policeman.
 "Yes, Baci - my guinea pig. I'm taking him to the Queensland Guinea Pig refuge to find him a friend. It's a bit of an emergency really because we're worried that he might be lonely.  He's got two other friends you see and they live in cages next door to each other so that they can talk......."
 "Your guinea pigs can talk sir?"
  "Yes that's right officer, to each other at least. They don't speak English of course, that would be ridiculous."  The policeman began massaging his temple with the hand that wasn't fiddling with his Taser. I think he might have been getting a headache.
 "Anyway, to cut a long story short," continued my male staff, "I was in a hurry because Baci is nervous and I want to get him to the guinea pig refuge to find him a friend as soon as I can so that he doesn't have to be nervous about meeting new guinea pigs for any longer than is absolutely necessary."

The policeman sighed, told my male staff to stay were he was and walked back to his car, returning a few moments later clutching a piece of paper.  "You'll be getting an on the spot fine of four hundred and fifty dollars today sir and you'll also receive three demerit points." He handed the piece of paper to my male staff and then walked back to his police car shaking his head and massaging his temple. Both temples actually. He'd re-employed his Taser fiddling hand to the more pressing task of trying to relieve his throbbing headache.  My male staff tossed the piece of paper onto the back seat. Baci had consumed it before they reached the Guinea Pig Refuge and my male staff forgot all about it. It probably wasn't important anyway.

BACI'S BALONEY


Well, wunce we got to the ginny pig refuge I was like put in a big rownd cage thing on the lawn and I dint know wat waz expected of me, so I like starts eeting the grass. Very nice it waz too. Then this other ginny pig is put into the rownd cage thing with me.  I like sniffs his butt and he sniffs mine. Then I mounted his head and he mounted myne.  Then I decided I dint lyke him mutch so I puffed myself up so that I look big and savidge and chattered my teef to show him how sharp they are. Then I like leaped at him, but this hand cums down and snatches him up before I can byte him.

So, there I am alone in the rownd cage again, so I eat a bit moor grass and then soon anuther ginny pig is put in with me so we had to go throo the hole butt sniffing thing all over again. Anyway I dint lyke him mutch eyetha so I puffed up and chattered my teef just lyke befour, and then leaped at him. Again this durty grate hand cums down and snatches him up befour I cood sink my teef into his butt.

Wunce again I go back to eeting the grass and soon another ginny pig is put in with me. This one's black and whyte and very fatt and is called Toby.  By now I'm getting tyred of puffing up and chattering so I just ignore him and konsuntrate on eeting.
 "Awww look." Says this laidees voyce. "They're getting on wunderfully. I think Baci has fownd the purrfect frend."  So then we're both grabbed and stuffed into separate karrying boxes and put on the back seet of the car.

Wen we get home Uncal Billy's male staff calls out to Uncal Billy's female staff.  "Hay!" He says. "I'm home and I've fownd Baci a reely good little frend. His name's Toby and I think they will be the best of chums."
 I'm like "In yor dreems pal." And as soon as Uncal Billy's staff put us together again I like go for Toby's throte.  Toby is living in the cage necks dor at the moment, but I can still swear at him throo the bars.

    TOBY

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Strictly Ballroom

Here at Piggy Paradise, beyond the Rainbow Bridge there is a large room. It's known as "The Ballroom." Not a great deal of dancing goes on there but it is a sacred, legendary place for all male guinea pigs.  It is here that the testostricles that have been removed from living guinea pigs are stored until they can be reunited with their owners once they cross the Rainbow Bridge into Piggy Paradise.  I assume that there is also one such room for cats and dogs too.  When the testostricles are removed  from the unfortunate cavy in question by some vindictive and probably jealous vet, they are transported to The Ballroom where they are stored until they can be reunited with their rightful owner. They hang on hooks on the wall, looking like paw paws hanging on the tree.  Each hook bears the name of the owner of the testostricles so that there can be no mistake when the rightful owner comes to claim them.  Surely there can be nothing worse than having someone else's ill-fitting dangly bits hanging between your hind legs for the rest of eternity, so they are very careful with that sort of thing.

In the old days, long before I arrived there was a simple ceremony wherein the newly deceased guinea pig would be presented with his much longed for testostricles by a venerable old cavy by the name of Sir Hector who held the title of  "Gonad Governor" and who dispensed his duties with as much grace and dignity as his title would suggest.  Unfortunately, just like in the physical world everything had to be made into a reality TV show, so now the whole presentation thing is  televised once a week. Naturally the show is called "Strictly Ballroom."  The neutered guinea pig "contestants" are shown three pairs of testostricles, one of which is theirs.  They have to guess which pair it is. If they guess correctly they are not only presented with their family jewels, but they also received a large bunch of basil. Guinea pigs who guess incorrectly only receive their own testostricles but they are clapped and cheered by the live audience anyway.  One big difference between reality TV shows here and back in the physical world is that here there is no ritualised humiliation of the contestants.  Anyway, suffice to say that I am just grateful to my staff for allowing me to keep my dangly bits, even though in my younger days they were hanging by a proverbial thread at times.

Anyway, this weekend my staff had visitors - four of them. Uncle Geoff and Aunty Cath and Uncle Mike and Auntie Robyn. Apparently they've know my staff for a long time, so its quite amazing that they are still friends, or maybe they are just fascinated by insanity, I don't know.  Uncle Geoff was my male staff's Best Man when he married my female staff.  Well, he may not have been the best man, but he was certainly a lot better than my male staff.  Sadly for my female staff he was already married to Aunty Cath so she had be satisfied with the second best man.

Alfie was handed to Uncle Mike and immediately stuck out a foot for a massage. Uncle Mike innocently obliged and then Alfie did not permit Uncle Mike to put him  back in his cage until he felt that his feet had had enough treatment. Each time Uncle Mike tried to put Alfie back he received a gentle nibble to remind him of his low status in the pecking order of the herd.  Consequently Uncle Mike had to stand throughout lunch clutching a fat white guinea pig while massaging its foot while the others stuffed themselves with their lunch.  He couldn't even free one hand to take a swig of his beer. My staff and their other guests showed absolutely no sympathy or consideration for his plight at all, eating pretty much everything and saving poor Uncle Mike nothing except a chicken drumstick that my female staff had already chewed and discarded and a piece of bread that had fallen from the table during the feeding frenzy and had landed, as usual, buttered side down.

After lunch Uncle Geoff decided to take the weight off his tummy and sat down on one of the recliner chairs. Soon Baci was placed on his lap by my female staff and Uncle Geoff set about stroking his glossy fur - Baci's that is. Uncle Geoff's fur isn't the least bit glossy. However, it was a warm, drowsy afternoon and with a stomach full of chicken salad and cheesecake, not to mention half a bottle of my staff's best Fijian sauvignon blanc, he soon drifted off to sleep. This rather left Baci stranded and try as he might to wake Uncle Geoff when he needed to be put back in his cage for a pee Uncle Geoff just kept on snoring.  So Baci did what any self respecting guinea pig would do. He peed on his lap.
Shortly afterwards my female staff came along, saw that Uncle Geoff was asleep and picked Baci up without noticing the wet patch on Uncle Geoff's lap and placed him back in his cage, praising him for being such a good boy.  Soon Auntie Cath came along to wake Uncle Geoff as it was time to go.  She was most alarmed to see the wet patch on her husband's lap, as indeed was her husband.  Poor Uncle Geoff swore that he had not wet himself but nobody seemed to believe him, and as my staff saw everyone to their cars there was much hushed muttering between the ladies about "men of a certain age" and "maybe he should try wearing incontinence pads." and "perhaps a catheter could be the answer."  So with sincere apologies to my staff from Auntie Cath and unheeded protestations of innocence by Uncle Geoff they climbed into their cars and drove off.  Baci hid under his hay until they'd gone.

Now, before I let Baci loose with his baloney.  My staff were wondering if anybody has an answer to this question.  It's one that's been bothering them for some time.

If my staff were to cut the beak off a bird and force it to live in a cage so small that it can't even turn around, they'd be called animal abusers and the government would charge them with the offence of animal cruelty.  Rightly so most reasonable people would say.  Here's their question.  Why is it then, that if they cut the beaks off two hundred and fifty thousand birds and force them to live in cages so small that they can't turn around, would they be called primary producers and given tax breaks and subsidies by that very same government?

I hope someone out there knows the answer because it's beyond me.

BACI'S BALONEY 

I dint pee on Uncal Geoff.  Reely, onustly, it wasunt me.......................................................... Well alrite it was me but I dint meen to.  He was snoring so I knew he was asleep.  I tried all the usual stuff to worn him that I needed to pee. I'm like riggling and skwerming like mad and Uncal Geoff just like karrys on snoring.  So I tried byting that funny lumpy bit that men humans have on their laps but that dint help. Nuffink much was happening there.  He's pretty old so maybe his lap nerve dyed. So I'm like "What shall I do now?" It's far too hi to jump off his lap. So in the end I just decided to pee and face the konsick  consyquen  connsikwens moosic.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Billy The Matchmaker



A guest post by Katy Page.

Billy the guinea pig had crossed the rainbow bridge. At first he had been unsure but his good friends Boris and Badger had reassured him that it was okay, so Billy had gone to join them. After a week or so he had settled in and he'd made several friends especially female ones. Every evening he would go and snuggle with his human friend Grandma pig who had gone to the Rainbow Bridge just a couple of weeks before.  Grandma Pig had always had a soft spot for Billy. 

After a few weeks Billy found himself in a bit of a rut. He would get up, have a snack, meet some friends for a chat or a game, have a snack, See his girlfriends, have a snack, Go for a little walk, have a snack and then go back to bed. One day he was drinking water from a particularly refreshing stream when Badger arrived. Billy had a question for him
"Badger, where does the stream come from?"
"I don’t know; it runs all through this part of the rainbow bridge."
"But it must start somewhere. I once chewed a book on rivers and streams. All waterways have a source."
"Well there is a lot of this place that hasn’t been explored" Said Badger.

Billy and Badger waddled off to meet their friend Boris and they all went to the basil patch. After they had eaten they talked to some of their other friends. Puppy the celebrity guinea pig was collecting pretty flowers for all his girlfriends. It took him a while as he had nearly five hundred.  Puppy looked a little tired and harassed, so after a brief chat they continued on, wandering into the main meadow where most of the other guinea pigs gathered. Some had become engineers to provide the Rainbow Bridge with unlimited Wi-Fi and piggy sized laptops. Billy had liked to blog when he was earthbound so he was considering getting himself a laptop. Boris had a little stall in the market place selling his special sauerkraut. Several other pigs had also used their talents to open a stall and there was quite a vibrant market place. There was no money over the Rainbow Bridge. Everyone just gave their things to anyone who wanted it and everyone was very respectful. Nobody was greedy because there was always plenty for everyone. It was like the exact opposite of the human dominated world they had left behind.

Boris went to open his stall for the day while Billy and Badger browsed through the market. Badger stopped to look at some special foot cream because he was very proud and protective of his feet. Seeing what Badger was looking at Billy rolled his eyes and wandered a bit. He knew Badger would be there for ages trying to choose. A few stalls along he met Mabel. Mabel was one of Puppy’s girlfriends and had lived with one of his online earthbound friends. Mabel liked to sew and knit and generally make things. Billy stopped to say hello and saw that Mabel had made a little pith helmet and backpack. Mabel saw him looking and wheeked quietly.
"You can try them on if you’d like to Billy."
"Thank you Mabel. I think I will"
Billy put the little helmet on his head and settled the backpack on his fur. Mabel smiled and said shyly
"Oh wheek! They suit you. You look like a real explorer pig."
Hearing Mabel say that, all the things he had been thinking about suddenly came together in Billy’s mind. He saw Badger coming with a new pot of lavender scented foot cream.
"Hey Badge how would you like to go on an adventure?"
"Ooh I’m not sure Billy. Will my feet get dirty?"
At this point Mabel came over and showed Badger her newest product. In her paws were four little pig sized shoes made out of tough green leaves. Badger immediately tried them on. Finding out how comfortable they were Badger looked hopefully at Mabel. In answer to the unasked question Mabel smiled and said
"Of course you can have them Badger."
Badger grinned and turned to Billy
"Ok" he said. "Let’s go on an adventure!"
Mabel gave Billy permission to take the helmet and backpack and two other small bags. Billy thanked her and gave one of the bags to Badger who put it on and stored his foot cream in it. They wandered over to where Boris was giving out his sauerkraut. Billy gave him the last bag and explained everything.
"Let’s go on an adventure. There is so many places here that haven’t been explored. It will be fun. We know the weather is warm enough for us to sleep outside and there isn’t any danger here. We can start by following the stream. What do you think?"
Badger and Boris thought about it and both agreed happily. They decided it was too late to start that day and anyway they needed to get supplies. They decided to meet early the next day in the main meadow. That afternoon they all gathered things they wanted to take. Billy gathered basil, his laptop, a bottle of water, some rope, pictures of all his girlfriends (These took up a lot of space.)and some dry food. 

Badger packed his new foot cream, a towel so he could wash and dry his feet, some coriander, a water bottle and some seeded food bars from the market. Boris chose a large jar of his finest sauerkraut, some biscuits to eat it on, water, a picture of his nephew Baci, little jars for specimens and some Basil beer. The next day they met early and after Billy had said goodbye to his girlfriends they set off. At first it was all things they had seen before but around mid-morning they were further than any of them had been before. Mostly it was just fields of various tasty plants and the stream had become a river. After a while they decided to stop for lunch. They sat on the river bank eating various plants from the area. They were just about to move on when they heard a strange noise and a canal boat chugged into view. At the helm was another guinea pig. Seeing them watching, the piggy waved madly and nearly fell off the boat. They exchanged looks as the boat pulled up alongside them. The piggy grinned and leapt on to the bank, missing the landing and ending up in a heap in front of them. Billy looked at the mass of white fur laying there and suddenly two black eyes appeared.
"Hi! I’m Captain! People think I’m strange but I’m not! Not really! Well okay a little bit! Actually a big bit! Yep I’m totally odd!"
"Hi Captain I’m Billy this is my friend Boris and my other friend Badger." replied Billy hesitantly. The odd ball of fluff in front of him wriggled around a bit and became a long haired piggy. Once she was looking at least vaguely normal, apart from the huge slightly dim smile, they invited her to join them for snacks. Captain accepted gratefully and they all sat down.

"So Frauline Kapitan vair are you goink?" Asked Boris. The vast quantities of sauerkraut that he consumed each day had given him a German accent.
"Oh nowhere in particular Boris. I just like sailing up and down the river in my boat. Isn’t it awesome? I found it moored here when I first arrived. I’d always wanted my own boat being called Captain and all and it’s so pretty with all the painting on it."
"Wow you talk a lot." Remarked Billy, not meaning to be rude, but rather stating the obvious.
"I do don’t I Billy? My humans always said I was noisy. They also said I was good natured but thick as two short planks. I don’t know what that means or whether or not should I  should be offended. They were very good humans. I thought I would miss them terribly when I came here but I can still see them and I’ve got my boat. She’s called The Carrot Cruiser. Do you like it? I thought it up all by myself."
"How do you know your boat is a girl?" Asked Badger.
"Silly Badger! All boats are girls! Anyway thanks for the snack I really should be going. Would you like to come up river on my boat with me?"
Captain seemed pleasant so they gratefully accepted. After a very through tour of The Carrot Cruiser Captain cast off and they sailed up the river. Billy, Badger and Boris sat on the deck watching the scenery slide serenely by. Captain chatted away the whole time, well aware that no one was really listening to her but she didn’t mind. 

After a couple of hours Captain announced she was turning around to go back down the river as this was the widest part. Billy, Badger and Boris thanked her, got off the boat and waved as she sailed off down the river. Soon dusk began to creep in so they decided to settle down for the night. After a filling dinner of things they foraged they all found something to do. Billy started writing up the day’s events on his laptop, Badger cleaned his shoes and feet and rubbed his lovely new cream into them and Boris collected some seeds of the plants he hadn’t seen before and carefully documented them in his notebook. After such an adventurous day they were all very tired and slept soundly, dreaming of food, napping and girlies. 

The next morning they woke to a beautiful clear dawn. After refreshing themselves in the river they had breakfast and prepared for another day. They walked for a few hours when they came to a fork in the road.
Boris picked it up.
 "Zat ist sehr strange." He said. "Vot on erse ist ein fork doink in der mitte der stra├če." Billy rolled his eyes and wish that Boris came with subtitles. Boris looked around. Mein goodness!" He exclaimed. "Zair ist ein knife und ein schpoon also. Und zey are havink ein hallmark. Zeyare beink real silver. Ich vill keep zis cutlery as ein souvenir."

Where Boris had found the fork the road split in two. One way carried on long the riverbank the other went through a lovely forest. After a quick discussion they decided to try the forest path. The forest was shady and cool and full of lovely scents. When it came to lunch time they found lots of juicy berries and even some apples. They carried on through the forest all afternoon and just as dusk came creeping in  they came across a cabin. Outside the cabin there was a pale ginger and white guinea pig busily tending to his garden. He looked up and smiled so they went over to say hello.
"Hi I’m Billy and these are my friends Boris and Badger."
"Hi my name is Percy I live here and grow special parsley. Would you like to try some?"
 "Does a guinea pig poo in it's cage?"  Said Billy. Well, it was a silly question.

Percy invited them into his cabin and gave them all a fresh morsel of parsley. They all agreed it was the loveliest parsley they had tried. Percy looked embarrassed and thanked them. He showed them all the things he made from it. There was parsley wine, parsley biscuits, parsley soup and pickled parsley. Boris particularly like the pickled parsley. Percy invited them to stay the night and they accepted. That evening Billy asked Percy a question.
"Why don’t you bring your parsley products down to the main meadow? There’s a little market there most days."
‘I’d be too shy anyway how would I get down there? It’s too far to travel in a day and this is the best place to grow parsley.’
Billy thought for a while and had an idea.
"Do you know where the river is wide?"
"Yes it’s about an hour’s walk from here if you use the shortcut."
"There’s a piggy who sails up and down the river on her barge. That’s where she turns around. I’m sure she would deliver your products to the main meadow and someone could run a stall for you."
"That’s a brilliant idea! Thank you Billy but I’m still shy about talking to her."
"Don’t worry about that she has a computer on her boat. I’ll email her and tell her to meet you there tomorrow lunch time and trust me you don’t need to worry about being quiet with her. She'll talk enough for both of you."

With a smile Billy wrote quick email to Captain and settled down for the night. The next morning Billy, Boris and Badger woke up to the most delicious smell. When Percy saw they were awake he served them warm parsley biscuits and hot fruit tea. They ate every bit and thanked Percy profusely. After breakfast they set off again, Boris with a jar of Percy’s extra special pickled parsley in his bag, they came to the end of the forest and found themselves back beside the river. Towards lunch time they heard a strange noise.  It sounded a little like their humans' shower from back when they were earthbound, only without the dreadful singing. They wandered on and all of a sudden they all stopped and stared. In front of them was a large waterfall in the most beautiful glade they had ever seen. The grass was a lush deep emerald, the flowers seemed to glow with colour, the trees were all shades of green, the fruit looked so juicy it would burst and in the middle was a deep blue pool that the waterfall tumbled noisily into.

For several minutes they just stood and stared overcome with wonder. As they stood there the sun came through the trees and the mist from the waterfall shimmered in all the colours of the rainbow. Billy, Boris and Badger had a delicious lunch in the glade. Boris sketched the scene  and Billy wrote a description on his laptop. No matter how hard they tried they couldn’t quite capture the wonder of being there. After a few hours they discussed it and decided nothing could quite match this as a destination for an adventure. It was time to return to the meadow and all their friends. They were just about to begin walking home when they heard a familiar chugging. Looking down the river they saw The Carrot Cruiser coming. Soon it pulled up next to them in the deep pool. Captain grinned at them from the helm and next to her was Percy.
"Hi! Look we came to see if you want a ride back down the river. Percy told me there would be room for me to turn around up here and you probably wouldn’t go any further not that you can unless you want to do some rock climbing but I doubt that. Wow this place is so lovely I’m speechless." All four of the boys burst out laughing and Captain looked around confusedly. 

Billy, Boris and Badger scrambled onto the boat after captain had turned around. Billy stood at the back of the boat watching the glade recede into the distance. Percy came and stood beside him.
"Beautiful isn’t it? I often go there when I want to think."
"I can see why. I hope you don’t mind Captain. She’s a bit chatty. Said Billy"
"Not at all. I’ve only known her a day but I already think she’s wonderful."
Billy looked at Percy who was blushing under his fur and smiled. He knew that look. It was the one he knew he had himself when he had met his girlfriends. He looked at Captain happily steering her boat and bobbing about to a tune only she could hear. He looked back to Percy
"Go for it." Said Billy.
"For what? I don’t know what you mean." Percy looked puzzled.
"Yes you do. You’re a boar and she’s a sow its natural."
"But she might turn me down."
‘I don’t think she will. Just try’
Soon they were as far down the river as Captain could take them. As they disembarked Billy nodded to Percy and inclined his head to Captain who was waving madly again. Percy smiled nervously got back on the boat and went over to Captain. Billy turned around after a few minutes and looked down the river. In the distance he could see a canal boat chugging along and at the controls two pigs snuggling together. Billy smiled to himself and caught up with Boris and Badger. 

After a few hours they began to recognise familiar landmarks. Soon after that they arrived back at the main meadow where Puppy and all their friends were waiting with a surprise. Captain had been down to the meadow and told them everything so they had organised a welcome home party. Billy, Boris and Badger were surprised and happy to be home amongst their friends. The party went on long into the night with lots of snacks, basil beer and girlfriends. Boris was even able to make use of his knife, fork and spoon. A few months after his adventure Billy was working on his new project, a book about his adventure, when his laptop pinged. It was an email from Captain. He’d had several from her recently but this one seemed different. Opening it a picture caught his eye. Reading it quickly he printed it out, the engineer pigs had been very busy making techy things, and rushed into the meadow. When he had found all his friends he announced with a big smile on his face.
"Captain and Percy are getting married! We are all invited it’s going to be at the waterfall glade in a few weeks’ time."
Everyone cheered and busily went to work getting suitable gifts for the happy couple. The day of the wedding was clear and sunny and everyone agreed that Captain looked beautiful with white flowers braided into her fur. 

After the wedding Percy got Billy alone and thanked him for all he had done. Billy laughed and assured Percy it would have happened sooner or later. That night they had another amazing party and Billy felt his adventure had been very satisfactory indeed.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

That's A Wrap

Today is Baci's birthday.  He 's one.  I was hoping to be able to give him a surprise on his birthday - like sneaking up behind him while he's eating his birthday basil cake with one carrot candle and mounting him.  However, since I no longer have a physical presence in the world that won't be possible.  I'll just have to satisfy myself by putting naughty thoughts into his hormone ravaged teenage brain.  Thoughts like -"Maybe it's a good idea to chew Billy's female staff's best Turkish rug." or perhaps "I bet Billy's male staff would be delighted if I ate a few pages from his work diary."

Coincidentally it's also my female staff's birthday. For the last thirty years she's been twenty seven, so I expect she'll be twenty seven again this year. Humans are funny like that, they never seem to be satisfied with their real age.  As soon as they're old enough to talk they make the most of whatever age they are. "I'm nearly six." A child who has just turned five a week ago will say." Then when humans reach a certain age (particularly female humans), they start subtracting a few years.  "I'm sort of in my mid-thirties a lady who has just turned fifty will say. Then later in life humans will start adding years again.  Someone who's just had their ninetieth birthday is likely to utter in a shaky voice "I'm nearly ninety five you know." Humans really should be more like guinea pigs, we're just happy to be alive whatever age we are.

Anyway, it's the same every year in my staff's house.  A week before my female staff's birthday my male staff will ask her the age old question. "What would you like for your birthday?"
 "Oh nothing really...........I don't know" My male staff has learned from long experience that those last three words "I don't know" mean that she really does want something and heaven help him if he doesn't buy her anything...........again.  So he spends six days thinking unsuccessfully what to buy her and then on the day before the big day, which for some reason always seems to be a Sunday so that he has a limited choice of shops, mostly hardware stores as it happens. Then he flies into a blind panic, leaps into the Hyundai Getz and races into town to ransack the hardware store in a desperate attempt to find something that my female staff would like.  A chainsaw perhaps, or a bag of horse manure.  One year he bought her a bale of sugar cane mulch and a hacksaw.  I know, I went with him that day and it wasn't pretty.  He stalked up and down the aisles of the shop for hours with me perched on his shoulder, picking up items to inspect and trying to gauge whether or not it would be a suitable birthday gift for my female staff.

From my perch on his shoulder I did what I could to help by biting his ear each time he picked up something inappropriate - which was often. A box of Taiwanese made mosquito coils - BITE.  A set of plastic buckets in different colours and sizes - BITE. A firewood splitter - That earned him a particularly hard BITE as we don't even have an open fire. It even elicited quite a loud yelp much to the alarm of the other customers. Still, it served him right for being so stupid. He also tried his luck with an electrical extension cord - BITE and a tin of varnish - BITE.

His language became more X-rated the longer he took to find something suitable. He muttered and sighed until finally the store manager came up to him to say he was about to close the shop.  My male staff didn't want to get her something that said "Happy Birthday. I want you to do more housework."  That's why he didn't buy her an iron or a vacuum cleaner. So, with the store manager tapping his foot and repeatedly glancing at his watch, my male staff grabbed the mulch and the hacksaw, and despite repeated warning bites from yours truly he made his purchases and was ushered hurriedly from the shop by the relieved manager.

The next thing he had to do was wrap the presents and wrapping presents is not his favourite task and on this occasion he had a large bale of mulch to deal with and an awkwardly shaped hacksaw.  Normally he'd ask my female staff to do the wrapping for him, but even he wasn't silly enough to ask her to wrap her own birthday presents. Though I suppose he could have asked her to wrap them with her eyes closed. She'd still have done a neater job than him anyway.  Of course the problem now was that there were no no shops open at all, certainly nothing that sold wrapping paper.  Fortunately back home in the shed my staff keep an enormous stack of old newspapers to use as an absorbent layer under our bedding. (They always try to find a photo of Tony Abbott to put face up.) A couple of hours and several paragraphs of foul language later my male staff had completed the wrapping process and stood back to admire his handiwork - two tatty great lumps of newspaper held together by three quarters of a mile of masking tape, one the size of a bar fridge and the other.......well the other could have been anything. At least there was no way my female staff was going to guess it contained a hacksaw.
 "Whaddya think Bill?" My male staff asked.  I just deposited a pile of bush chocolate in the middle of the floor and waddled back to my pigloo.  My female staff was delighted with her presents by the way.

BACI'S BALONEY

Dudes, I'm wun today. As soon as I woke up I shouted to Alfie. "Hay Alfie!" I sed. "Gess wat. I'm like wun today."
 "You're like wun wat today?" He shouted back.  He can be a funny ginny pig sumtimes.
I wanted a gerlfrend for my birthday, but I don't think I'm going to get wun.  Billy's male staff sed I should just be thankful that I still have my testostricles and that I should konsidder that my present. I hope that doesn't meen he's going to wrap them up in noospaper.