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Saint Martin, The Popemobile and The Butcher

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Congratulations to Cardinal Camillio Doglione from Vatican City
who correctly identified the deliberate mistake in my last story.
A souvenir  “The Bucket …is… full of it “  tee shirt is now winging it’s way to Cardinal Doglioni.

The young lady revealed in my previous expose was of course NOT my neighbour.  She is Senior Research Fellow in Pneumatics at the University of Rome, as well as part-time aqua aerobics instructor for the Pontiff.

Today however, I would like to bore the living bejaysus  entertain you with two short stories about my REAL neighbour, Saint Martin of FOT.

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Introduction;  Mrs GOF and I live in a sparsely populated corner of the world. Our nearest, and only permanent neighbour for the last 29 years, Saint Martin of FOT, lives 800 metres away as the kookaburra flies, or 3 kilometres if the aforementioned kookaburra chose instead to walk and hop along the vehicular road.

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Story #1.

Saint Martin of FOT drives a small 4WD vehicle that, with a very small amount of modification in my farm workshop could easily be converted into a replica of the Popemobile. He almost unintentionally started this process on his previous vehicle a very long time ago when we were both young and moderately impoverished.

His ancient and severely-rusted-along-the-panel-joints Toyota Land Cruiser was vibrating and careening flat-chat down the steep dirt track heading towards civilisation when suddenly a large chunk of cabin decided to part company with the remainder of the truck.

It frisbeed upwards and backwards before crashing back onto the gravel road leaving Saint Martin of FOT speeding forth with his white knuckles holding onto the steering wheel for dear life. A howling gale was now rushing over his bald head, and his earlobe vortices generated contrails of condensed water vapour which funneled into the slipstream behind him.
Efficient brakes were just a long-lost memory for this old Land Cruiser and Saint Martin of FOT, during the kilometre that it required to come to a complete halt, philosophically concluded that this whole unfortunate incident was probably a sign from God that it was time to upgrade to a more reliable motor vehicle.

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Interlude;   Saint Martin is indeed almost a saint.
Whilst he does not have a particularly high opinion of himself, everyone I know holds him in high regard.
Saint Martin is a very gentle man (most of the time) and quite diminutive in stature (all of the time).

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Story #2.  One day, almost seventeen years ago now, Saint Martin of FOT accompanied me to a Bulk Meat Shop in Cairns.

Standing behind the counter was a mean-faced cleaver-meister who looked like Hulk Hogan’s twin brother whose staple diet could well have been steroids diluted only occasionally by slabs of barbecued tenderloin.  A very large man wearing a blue and white striped apron who was carrying a boning knife in a huge paw which occasionally twitched involuntarily, probably because his blood nicotine was at a dangerously low level. Either that, or he had anticipatory relief-tremors because his diet had caused him to be seriously constipated.

I asked politely for “two kilograms of rump steak please.”

The Hulk replied “This is a BULK butchery. Didst thou not readeth mine heiroglyph outside? I only dispense WHOLE rumps.”

Despite The Hulk’s almost biblical explanation of his trading terms, Saint Martin of FOT casually walked around the counter, reached up and grabbed The Hulk by the lapels of his Bulk Butchery shirt and promised him permanent physical damage if he did not immediately “supply my friend with the requested two kilograms of rump steak.”

The Hulk meekly proceeded to cut two kilograms off a whole rump before neatly wrapping it in plain white paper whilst apologising profusely to me for his previous outburst of bad manners.

Neighbours like Saint Martin of FOT are as scarce as hen’s teeth.

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One of these stories is based on fact, the other a summary of the most vivid dream which I have ever had in my life. Please take your pick as to which is which.

Occasionally dreams and real life are like two peas in a pod.

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Mrs GOF’s dream start

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Half-time score;

GOF                  1
Mrs GOF       11,335

(It may just end up being the full-time score if she ever gets to read this story.)

Australia's moral lighthouse-keeper

Moral crusaders are constantly hollering from their pulpits of pontification that each of us lesser mortals living in intimate partnerships should be pulling our socks up because the failure/divorce rate is approaching fifty percent.

I think it’s an absolute miracle that any union survives for more than a few years because the vast range of variation and difference within human psyches and expectations makes the possibility of finding long-term compatibility and happiness with another person fairly remote.

Perhaps I am not alone in suspecting that some marriages only achieve longevity because one dominant partner has stifled the individuality, ambition and dreams of the other.
Maybe other relationships still exist only because each partner in equal proportion has allowed the two-storey house of hope to decay through lack of maintenance into a ramshackle hovel where neither occupant can even be bothered looking for a door to get out.

I’m sorry, I just went all philosophical and cynical there for a moment.
I’ll try and make sure it doesn’t happen again.
This story was to be about something different.

It was supposed to be about dreams.

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I am perfectly content with my belief that dreams are nothing more than the brain doing a little essential housework by filing-away, throwing-out, or trying to make sense of the vast quantities of crap we shove into it each day via our various orifices and portals.

I don’t expect them to have meaning or predictive potential.
Mostly I can’t even be bothered trying to remember them.
Certainly I don’t think anyone else really needs to know about the content of my dreams.  If one day I have a real humdinger then you will be the first to find out.

Mrs GOF is different.

Every morning for the past 32 years Mrs GOF has presented me with the latest episode of her Adventures in Slumberland.
In great detail.

Occasionally she attempts to convince me that she had had dreams which fortold the future, but always AFTER she had been overtaken by the event itself….never before.

Mostly I solemnly endure this quirk of her character whilst nodding profusely and inserting a tsk tsk” here and awow” there into the occasional pauses which inevitably must occur in order to draw breath during any half-hour monologue.

Ninety percent of what gets written in The Bucket was originally composed in my head during the Dream Stories morning interlude.

I am only able to get away with  provide this porthole into domesticity today without fear of physical or psychological retribution because Mrs GOF has gone swanning around Papua New Guinea for a month.  Out of range of the internet.

I’m safe.  It’s not like any other member of my family, or friends of Mrs GOF might read this blog and urgently send a message for her to procure an armful of fighting spears and the machete that chopped poor old Roger the Rooster’s head off so that she can deal with my disrespectful impertinence when she gets back.

It really is miraculous that some partnerships can endure for so long.
It is a miracle that Mrs GOF has tolerated my intolerance of her dawn dream summary for so long.

She has told me 11,335 dream stories during the past 32 years.

And I only ever had ONE dream that I thought was worthy of relating to her.

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So there you have it.   What more could you possibly need to know.

I do apologise for this woeful piece of storytelling.

It just sort of fizzled out with barely a whimper.

I think I know why.

It’s now been 16 days since I heard a dream story.

My world as I knew it is temporarily incomplete.


Globet Inc.

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Ten years ago, our daughter generated for herself the nickname "Globet".

It is the sort of obscure name you see on personalised car number plates that makes you wonder what significance it has to the owner.
I do know the derivation of "globet", but it deserves to remain shrouded in mystery.

Last night, in the most vivid of dreams, I discovered a telephone directory entry for "Globet Inc." 
A display advertisement of magnitude normally reserved for a major airline or large government department.

Now for me, those who profess to interpret dreams have as much credibility as astrologers.   (i.e. very close to zero.)

In this case however, I am prepared to make an exception.

I forsee that I am going to be cared for extremely well indeed during my rapidly approaching autumn years.

I can also see a little red convertible and a penthouse apartment.

And then that retired Aussie supermodel who has been avoiding me for all these years might just change her mind.

And just when I was about to set the final jewels in my crown of fantasy, Mrs GOF had to come in here and ask me what I was thinking about, and would I like a cup of tea.

Now I've lost my train of thought.

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