Retirement in Patagonia

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“Why have we come all this way?” Edith demanded.

“Because I think there is some treasure to be found here,” he responded.

“It looks like a suburban street to me,” she insisted.

“No, really,” Donald retorted.  “I have done my research and followed all of the leads.”

“What ‘leads’?” she questioned sourly.

“Well it all started when I was watching The Princess Bride on TV.  It said, ‘the real Dread Pirate Roberts has been retired fifteen years and living like a king in Patagonia.’ He had switched his identity with a guy called Cummerbund.  And look here, the phone-book lists this address as belonging to Juan Cummerbund.”

“My God, you are crazy!” she said as he pulled her with him.

He knocked the door and drew a gun.

A tall man with a wooden leg and eye-patch answered the door.

“Captain Roberts?” Donald inquired.

Taken aback, the old man returned, “And why would you be call’n me that, Matey?”

 

Padre

 

What Pegman Saw: Patagonia, Chile

 

Apologies for running 9 words over

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Athens: An Adventure

Best_Gear_for_Storm_Photography_by_Martin_Lisius

It seemed a simple enough request: an economy class ticket to Athens, Greece.  I was on my way to an archaeology seminar, at which I was going to be presenting a paper on the problems of post-Victorian spoil in the corrupting of sites.  

With my bags packed and ticket in hand, I arrived at Gatwick and was surprised that I was expected to fill in a United States visa form.  I rolled my eyes and thought “Sounds like Trump’s America, needing to file if you will be within 24,000 miles of US territory,” but filled it in I did.

I put my carry-on in the overhead storage and settled into my seat.  I must have dozed through the rest of the pre-flight.  Later as I woke I was surprised at the number of southern drawls I could hear from my fellow passengers.  

“I can’t wait to get to Athens,” one explained to a neighbour. “I haven’t been home for years.”

Shortly afterwards the pilot announced that we were beginning our descent.  He then announced that the temperature in Athens, Georgia was a mild 72 degrees.

When I “de-planed,” I insisted on seeing someone at customer services.  I was told I would first need to clear customs, and the desk would be on the left after leaving immigration.

I tried to explain that I wasn’t staying, but to no avail.

I followed the crowd to the customs hall and the agent asked to check my bag.  She opened the bag, and then pushed a button.  Suddenly five more agents arrived.

“Sir, what are these?” the first asked.

“They are Medieval glass beads in the one plastic bag, and Victorian beads in the other. They are examples from my research,” I began to explain as they brought a German Shepard to sniff the bags of brightly coloured, pill sized beads.  Fortunately the dog was not phased by the contents.

I finally got to the service desk, and after some apologies I was given a ticket back to London, it being too late to make the Athens conference.

As part of the apology I was give a $20 voucher to be used in duty-free.  I quickly went into the DF concourse and grabbed a “real American hot dog” for only $19.95.  Being late for my flight I swiftly put this and my nickles change into my carry-on.

After boarding, we were delayed by severe thunderstorms, but eventually took off.    The plane soon reentered the stormy weather, and we were pummeled by a series of lightening strikes.  One of the engines caught alight and we made a controlled but unplanned descent into the ocean in the Devil’s Triangle.

The plane came down in surprisingly calm water off the coast of a small island.  There were a few bumps and bruises, but everyone survived.

On the island was a series of WW2 metal huts, a large campfire pit (which was strewn with charred Pepsi cans and carbonised marshmallows), and several kayaks. We had places to stay – a win, and some might try to seek rescue by taking a kayak to a bigger island we could see on the horizon, but no one felt intrepid enough to give it a go.

Two days later we were surprised by the sound of a ship coming into the lagoon near the campsite.  Sixty-four Bahamian Boy Scouts and their leaders had just arrived to use the camp.  We were rescued. I quickly gabbed two Pepsi cans and a handful of marshmallows.

As soon as I returned to England I began my most important academic work: “The problems of modern leisure rubbish on the preservation of WW2 historical sites.”

Padre

Haunted Wordsmith’s Fibbing Friday

  1. You wanted to book a trip to Athens, but the agent misunderstood you…where did they send you?
  2. What will customs agents find in your luggage?
  3. What do you sneak aboard the flight, and what do you sneak it in?
  4. The plane crashes — everyone survives — where did you crash?
  5. What are three things you find at your crash site?
  6. Survivors see a rescue opportunity but don’t take it…why?
  7. What are you finally rescued by?
  8. What is the first thing you do when you get back home?
  9. The airline offers you money, but you turn it down…what do you get instead?
  10. You decide that a cruise is safer, where do you go?
  11. You get marooned on a deserted island but find huts and scientific equipment made out of coconuts…what happened to Gilligan and the Skipper?
  12. A fishing boat rescues you, but you have to pay Poseidon for safe passage…what do you pay?
  13. He rejects your fare and throws you across the world…you land safely, but where do you end up?
  14. How does your story end?

Taco Meatloaf

 

Meatloaf

Meatloaf was staple fare when I was a kid.  Ground beef, onion, and cracker crumbs made for an evening meal, and sandwich filler as a left over.  This recipe builds on the 1960s standard, and has a bit of a difference.

Ingredients:

  • Ground Beef  300 – 400 g
  • Tortilla Chips 50 g
  • Sweetcorn 3 Tbs
  • Onion 1/2 medium
  • Taco Spice (chili powder, ground cumin, paprika, crushed red pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano, salt and black pepper) [see below]
  • Cheddar Cheese 50 – 100 g to taste
  • Eggs 2
  • Red Bell Pepper 1 Tbs (optional)
  • Jalapenos 1 Tbs (optional)
  1. 1 Tbsp. Chili Powder.
  2. 1/4 tsp. Garlic Powder.
  3. 1/4 tsp. Onion Powder.
  4. 1/4 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper Flakes.
  5. 1/4 tsp. Dried Oregano.
  6. 1/2 tsp. Paprika.
  7. 1 1/2 tsp. Ground Cumin.
  8. 1 tsp. Sea Salt.

Method:

In a large mixing bowl crumble the chips.  Add the beef, sweetcorn, and eggs and mix well.  Dice the onion, and any peppers used.  Add to the meat mixture.  Grate the cheese and add to the mixture as well.  Mix and knead well.   Then pat into a ball and place in a loaf plan.

Preheat oven to 175 C/ 350 F.  Place the pan into the oven and bake for 45 to 55 minutes.

Cut into slices and serve topped with lettuce and tomato.

 

Padre

Miscellaneous Prompted Micro Poems 6

Captured in their passing – an instant caught on film –
A moment kept forever – shadows of where they’d been –
Though memories may grow foggy, precious pictures still remain.

TLT Throwback – Year 3: Eleven 14 March 2019

three line tales, week 163: a special deal

photo by Artem Bali via Unsplash

This special offer’s made – especially for you,
It wont be ’round forever – only a day or two,
Go ahead buy one – it’s the thing you should do.

Three Line Tales, Week 163 14 March 2019

Image result for writing

For World Poetry Day

For poetry day around the world, it’s time
It is a day for rhythm and rhyme
It’s not that poems from you we will coerce
So remember it can always be verse

21 March 2019

 

Padre

 

High Noon Lane

 

high noon

CCC #19

They had been married for exactly one year, and as an anniversary surprise David took Anne to see the new house he had built for them.

“Where are you taking me?” she asked as they entered an unfamiliar estate.

“It’s a surprise,” he responded.

“I hate surprises, you should know that.”

They turned the corner and stopped in front of the new build.

“Surprise!” he said.

“What?” she questioned.

“It’s our new home! It’s where I have been going on the weekends.  I built it!”

“What?  You have been away so much, I didn’t think our relationship meant anything to you,” she said.  “In fact, I have been so lonely that I was going to file for a divorce.”

David looked forlornly at the house, then at her; and then staring at the street sign on the corner said, “Do not forsake me, oh My Darling!”

Padre

“So -Why?”

 

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Hypocaust

 

“Help!”

“So – Why should I help you? You got yourself in there,” his older sister responded.

“But, I thought there might be treasure or something,” he pleaded.

“Look Bryan, its a museum.  Don’t you think if there was any treasure down there that they would have gotten it out already?  Besides, the sign says, ‘Please do not climb on the exhibits’.”

“But I didn’t climb ‘on,’ I climbed down!” he observed in an attempt to justify himself.

“Whatever,” Margaret said dismissively, rolling her eyes.  “Why in the world would anyone want a twelve-year-old brother?” she thought to herself.

“Margaret! Are you still out there?” Bryan whimpered as he became concerned that she hadn’t spoken for a minute or two.

“What a chance,” she thought to herself with a smirk.  She then sat down just out of sight of the hole.  She then texted some of her friends about her “stupid little brother” and sent a photo of the hole.  Then satisfied that he had suffered “almost enough,” she stood up and reached in to help the teary-eyed boy out.

Padre

Haunted Wordsmith’s Story Starter: “Help!”

 

“Well Hello Officers”: A Roseman Tale

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The following is a monologue in the person of Bertram Drake, Pawn-Broker:

The Interview:

 

(Looking up from some papers) “Well hello officers.  What can you do for me?”

 

“Help you with your inquiries?  Of course, of course.”

 

“My full name?  Bertram Drake.”

 

“Okay, Duckman.  Drake – Duckman – Drake? (making a balancing gesture) What difference does it make?”

 

“A crime?  How can it be a crime?  A duck’s a duck.”

 

“Okay, it’s Bertram Duckman.”

 

“Mis-advertising?  I am offended, I never mis-advertise!”

 

“The vampire ring?  Well that item is exactly as described!  This big schmuck comes in here and asks if I have anything to keep vampires away.  I say ‘like garlic, or something?” and he says ‘no, something stronger.’  So I am thinking, ‘well there’s holy water and crosses, but I don’t exactly carry those lines,’ then I look up and see the copper ring.  I say to him, ‘Have I got the thing for you.  It is absolutely guaranteed to keep away vampires, and trolls during daylight hours.’ So he buys it.”

 

“I absolutely stand by it.  If anyone carrying that ring is attacked by vampires or trolls in daylight, I guarantee a full refund!”

 

“What do you mean extortionate interest?  My fees are quite fair.”

 

“Gwendolyn?  She is family.   Yes 250% is more than fair, for a risky enterprise.  My people tell me that if she survives (from my lips to the god’s ears) that she is in line to make a killing.”

 

“Stolen goods?”  Never!  I have a no tolerance policy on stolen goods.  In fact, if anyone can bring me a numbered receipt, or other documentary evidence that an item in my shop is theirs, I will return the item to them, there and then, for a small finders and handling fee for my ‘lost and found’ services.”

 

“Two sets of books.  Listen constable, I think that you should leave business to businessmen.  Haven’t you ever heard of double entry accounting?”

 

“Two different books? No I assure you that the books are nearly identical.”

 

“Well they can’t be exactly the same can they?  Handwriting and such, but all the essentials are the same.”

 

“Intimidation? I have nothing but the greatest concern for my customers.  If they fall in arrears, I make a personal visit to check on their health, and to see if there might be anything that I might assist them with.  It is purely concern!”

 

“Bruno and Big Tony?  Yes they are employees.  Bullying, I am aghast at the very thought of it.  They are good-hearted lads and like me pay brief visits purely for the convenience of the customer.  After all, busy people can’t always get away to visit the shop, so as a service I send them around to make collections.

 

“A look around?  Yes please do, we don’t need any unpleasantness like warrants and such now, do we?”

 

“Ah, like that one!  No, no please feel free to open anything you would like.”

 

“Keys, keys? (Patting his pockets) I think Bruno, might just . . . No please not with a hammer . . . “Keys, now I remember, they must be in the office.”

 

“The precinct house?  Now?  But I have a business to run.”

 

“What do you mean ‘had’?'”

 

Padre

Look Again

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Pastor Rich brought a message this week in which he encouraged us to “look again.”  All too often we make assumptions about the state of things and once our minds are set we make that our “reality.”

God on the other hand sees things for what they are.  Rich gave three examples of biblical examples of those who needed to take a second look.  The first of these is found in I Kings 18.  There had been three years of  drought, and “the Lord came to Elijah: ‘Go and present yourself to Ahab, and I will send rain on the land’ (vs 1).”  Elijah believed and he prayer.  The story continues,And Elijah said to [King] Ahab, ‘Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.’ So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees.  ‘Go and look toward the sea,’ he told his servant. And he went up and looked. ‘There is nothing there, he said. Seven times Elijah said, ‘Go back.’  The seventh time the servant reported, ‘A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.’So Elijah said, ‘Go and tell Ahab’, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’  Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain started falling and Ahab rode off to Jezreel (vs 41-45).

The servant only saw drought, he looked to the sea and saw cloudless sky.  Even though this was repeatedly told to the prophet, Elijah was prepared to take another look.  To look beyond “failure” and “reality.”  God is a great God, and the patience and willingness to wait on the Lord, required seven “looks” but God was faithful!  We too need to waith on the “Rainmaker,” He will provide even in our times of drought (both physical and spiritual).

The second “eye opening” has two parallel manifestations.  It is found in II Kings 6.  Elisha the prophet is at Dothan, and he has angered the king of Aram.  “Then he [the king] sent horses and chariots and a strong force there. They went by night and surrounded the city.  When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked.”

Here again we have a servant which sees only the obvious.  His eyes are closed to God’s power and possibilities.  The prophet responds, “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. As the enemy came down toward him, Elisha prayed to the Lord, “Strike this army with blindness.” So he struck them with blindness, as Elisha had asked.  Elisha told them, “This is not the road and this is not the city. Follow me, and I will lead you to the man you are looking for.” And he led them to Samaria (vs 14-19).”

The servants eyes were opened to the reality of God’s power and he saw the legions of God.  But the story goes on with those who thought they were in control losing their sight, and being lead from their path.  We need to see the power of God, and we need to be blind to our own presumptions.

The final example offered by Brother Rich is the parting of the Red Sea in the Book of Exodus.  The Isrealites had seen the miracles of God throughout the plagues of Egypt, but once in the desert they saw only a sea before them and an army behind them.  How blind is that when they had already been led by a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire at night?  They in their fears still thought as slaves, they were defeated already in their minds.  But Moses is told by God to move on wards into the sea.  This is not the sense of sight, but the sense of faith.  The result, as most of us know, is  that God didn’t even let a sea set His people back.  Yes, it was a miracle.  We as God’s people today need to remember that God is in the miracle business.  We need to see with faith.  We need to take another look at our can’ts and see God’s cans!

Padre

Serenity

 

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Union Field Chapel at Sunset – ACWS UK

 

The battle’s o’r – the day is done-

The weary enter nocturnes’ peace –

They for now, their eyes can close –

For a moment – let struggles cease.

 

For these – they soon, shall need to face –

A new day’s rising sun –

Marching from place to place –

In hope of victories – to be won.

 

But for others today – they too can rest –

Their race has now been run –

They a glory – now will see –

As they meet the welcoming Son.

 

Padre

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Day Trip to the Lincolnshire Coast

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Skegness Clock Tower

Lincolnshire is a relatively sparsely populated county, and exploring it requires a bit of driving.  The coast offers some good beaches, and we spent a day checking this area out. 
Skegness is a typical English seaside town.  It has beach, arcades, and fair number of eateries and cafes.  We gave the windswept beach a visit and found its rugged views wonderful.
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Beach

The town’s clock tower is a really wonderful landmark, and along with several maritime public art make for some great atmosphere.
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Anchor Fountain

While there are many options for a quick drink and bite we gave the Jive Bunny Cafe, 116 Lumley Road, Skegness a try.   This is a quirky cafe with the jive theme (records on walls) and seaside arcade themes intermixed. The service was good and the place a good one for getting in some chill time.  The coffee was good, and the ambient music selection pleasurable.   The decorations of guerrillas, donkeys and such gave it a bit “Skegness” touch.
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Jive Bunny

I had read about Gerardo’s on TripAdvisor and as it was then our practice to get seaside ice creams (pre-Keto) we ame our way to 1A Victoria Road in Mablethorpe.  While it is 17 miles from Skegness, it was a pleasant enough drive, and it was well worth it for the quality of the ice cream.

 

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Gerardo’s

The restaurant/café was very busy, but its popularity didn’t compromise the service. We were served quickly, and attentively. The set up of the dining space is café /snack bar type, but is pleasant all the same. The quality of the ice cream (we had chocolate, cappuccino, and strawberry) was excellent. The coffee likewise was rich with out being bitter. It was a worthwhile stop, if in the area.

Sadly we couldn’t explore more of the coast on this occasion, but I do hope to check out Lincolnshire for a longer stay in the future.  All in all it was a good outing, and one which allowed us to “colour in” a little more of our UK coastal map.

 

Padre

 

Gerardo’s