The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

speed the plough

Spent the afternoon shooing nephews away from my plough.
Shoo nephews, shoo.
You would not believe how unimpressed they are by the word shoo.
My plough!
Can I really own such a thing?
This morning the ghost of Indiana Jones appeared to me.
"You and I are passing through history Heelers," he intoned. "But this plough is history."
Yes folks, Indiana is right.
I am really just the caretaker.
The guardian for a generation.
I'm proprietorial enough about it all the same.
Compared to me, Indiana Jones had it easy.
He only had to keep the Nazis away from the Ark of the Covenant.
He didn't have to deal with my nephews.
Ah, they're no respecters of persons I tells ee.
But I digress.
Since an uncle gave me the plough last week, I've been engaged in delicate restoration work.
Sanding off the rust.
Pouring on the paint.
Scaring off the nephews.
I cut corners here and there.
I got bored with the sanding routine very quickly and jumped to the part about sloshing on the paint.
The nephews occasionally eluded my patrols, and subjected the venerable apparatus to some 21st century style stress testing.
But the end result doesn't look bad.
The Dad viewed it with me this evening.
"It looks well," quoth he.
"How old do you think it is Dad?" sez me.
"It's very old," averred he.
"Like fifty years?" suggests me.
"More like a hundred," pronounceth he.
The day was going down.
Long shadows stretched across the garden.
My cousin Frances ambled up the avenue to the old Chateau through the pooling purple gold luminosity of a pretentious dusk.
She's the school teacher.
The one who can kill a charging teenager at forty paces with a blow of her tongue.
"I see you've been making friends with physical labour James," she declaimed as she approached.
The noble Heelers drew himself up to his full height. (Five foot six, if I stand on tippy toes.)
"I'll have you know that physical labour and I are no strangers," I told her firmly. "We are in fact vague acquaintances."
Frances didn't seem to have heard.
She certainly didn't favour my bon mots with a burst of applause.
But then she never does.
She was bending over the plough.
"What paint did you use James?" she enquired.
"Black," I answered confidently.
"No, I mean did you use Hammerite or Anti Rust or what?" persists she.
"Yes," sez I, "one of those."
We wandered into the house.
I was regaling the Dad and Frances with my plans to install the plough in a quiet corner of the garden along with a flower bed, bushes, the wagon wheel and a wooden bench.
"It'll be a little bower where you can go to sit and contemplate and give thanks to God," sez me.
"That's not a bad idea," sez the Dad.
"I'll believe it when I see it," sez Frances.


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