A coterie of idlers met at the Old Pound Inn, Aller, at the invitation of Bob, Our Guide for the afternoon. Bob arrived first, bought a pint and procured a menu to peruse while waiting. A short while later the young hostess approached and enquired whether he was ready to order. She seemed very pleased to hear that other people were coming to join him. Then Greg and Richard walked in.
Richard was sorry but he was unable to bring his bone seeking dog. No matter. Joe arrived with his highly trained bone finding mutt.
Rik arrived with Wendy and Stellan. Stellan’s attire again passed muster. Then Nick made his entrance accompanied by Josie and his two friends.
The beer and food was enjoyed by all
Luckily Oz could find no bones in Bob’s meal; Bob was glad Richard’s dog was in a kennel.
Nick suggested a toast to Bill Frindall. Bob toasted John Martyn who liked whisky and also Samuel Beckett who he suggested should be an honourable Blacksmith. Rik and Joe pointed out that Beckett had died years ago and was a very good cricketer and perhaps Bob meant Harold Pinter who played his cricket in true Blacksmiths spirit and died recently. At that moment Bob realised why he had done so badly in a particular English exam at school all those years ago.
The last battle to be fought on English soil was much discussed. Both Wendy and Rik were keen to find a plungeon.
Josie consulted the Donkey and suggested it was time we made a move.
We ambled around the battlefield and found a memorial stone.
Bob said if we had x-ray eyes it would be more interesting.
Nick said rabbit holes and molehills would be good places to find musket balls. Bob examined a molehill and found two cannonballs; he said one was from a rabinet the other possibly from a minion. Nick was astonished and nearly believed him. Rik identified one object as a Victorian ivory billiard ball and the other as just a dinosaur egg.
Despite digging up every mole hill in sight Oz failed to find a single corpse.
Wendy found a plungeon
but after much debate we concluded that it was not the offending plungeon from 1685. It was probably too small. However one could imagine the pitchforkers arguing so loudly about who was going to cross first that they might easily awaken a sleeping royalist army.
Nick was first to spot a starling and surely deserves a prize. But would we see the 3-4 million that are usually to be found roosting at Shapwick?
Sadly no. Our Guide took us to the right spot but the starlings went to the wrong spot.
Only a few thousand were spotted.
However we did see weird cormorants roosting. And Wendy and Stellan glimpsed the back end of an otter.
And it was extremely cold.
And our guide failed to provide hot tea.
Strength in Idleness
Next Meet. Saturday 31st January 2009.
Association of S.A.D. Idlers
‘Dont grumble ,Give a whistle, and come and chew on life’s gristle,’
The Old Pound Inn, Aller TA10 0RA, ST3929 1pm.
Drink and eat here if you like. You may prefer to eat beforehand or even abstain.
After that I would like to show you the site of the last battle to be fought on English soil. If we are lucky we may even find a musket ball or old bone.(Perhaps Richard will bring his dog!)
Then we could travel a few miles to Shapwick Heath and try to spot starlings.( Sorry no dogs in reserve!)
There will be a prize for the first to spot one and a bigger prize for the first to see a million ,tho' not in proportion.!
The afternoon will involve a short walk, tho’ the Somerset Levels are not so named for nothing. They are an idlers paradise! Bring binoculars if you can as there will be things to look at ( And it saves walking so far). Sorry Rik, the rumour of a Great Bustard on the reserve last week was false- it was only Gordon Brown! (Oh, they were right then!)