By Geoff Everest
Dear Sir &/or Madam,
If you have a map of the world you will will see that the south coast of France is situated in a straight line between Downunder-land and Cornwall. This means that all flying objects pass over our heads when on the right flight path, although we do see a few US of A objects from time time, but even in the air they drive on the wrong side of the road so they obviously get it wrong from time!
Having bought a PhD in ufology a few years ago I was contacted by the local civil aviation authority because of strange things crossing national airspace without authority, and especially over the Xmas season. They showed me some photos and I told them there was no danger, it was just cyber-Cornish people flying off to a virtual Xmas party, and they've been quite happy not to bother anyone since.
However, this year in the space of five minutes I had three priority calls - CIA, MI5 and the French Deuxieme Bureau saying they were sending me a helicopter because one of the strange vessels had crashed on the beach inSt Tropez and there seemed that some alien life form had survived the crash. I quickly put on my coat and when I opened the door there were three 'copters on the front lawn and half a dozen suspicious secret agent-looking men arguing as to who would have the 'honour' of transporting me. Suffering from Icarus complex I quietly slipped into my car and drove off.
When I got to St Tropez I immediately saw what it was all about. A flying pasty had made an emergency landing. It wasn't this year's model, perhaps a '94 Bodmin Fair or '95 Helston Floral, but no matter. Already some of the local stray animals, and even some of the natives, had taken the scent and were shamelessly scoffing it down at the speed of light! Happily I was there in time to warn them and the local police that the little flat bit on the bottom left-hand side should be put under escort as it contained huge quantities of arsenic!
"Talking about poison," says one of the local policemen, "come and have a look at this!"
Only a few yards from the ever-diminishing flying pasty was what looked like a female corpse, wrapped Statue of Liberty-like in a black and white toga, clutching a tin hip flask (for very large hips!). The forensic and narcotics experts turned up with gas-masks, rubber gloves and the rest because two of the local cops had taken a sniff at the flask, had passed out and rushed to hospital. They put the flask in an air-tight container and sirened away to analyse the stuff.
Fortunately it soon became clear (probably) she was alive and muttering things in some unknown language, punctuated by some much too well-known words in English. Having bought a PhD in every other language I came to the conclusion that she must be speaking Cornish - the only language that is not
for sale! By pure coincidence I had my French/Cornish dictionary in my inside pocket was was able to get the gist of what she was saying.
"***** engine #3 caught fire. Must be the sausage meat and mustard in
the fuel! And where's me ***** flask?"
Have you ever noticed that dictionaries are difficult to read because they are heavy and you need both hands to hold the darn things: so holding it and flicking through the pages at the same time becomes a circus act. Anyway the cop gave me a helping hand and I was able to establish contact with E.T.
"If yer puts sausage meat and mustard in a Cornish Pasty then yer just got wot wuz comin' to yer!" I'll have to work on my accent, but she understood and nodded in bleary agreement.
I managed to whisk her away before the second-hand James Bonds arrived, took her back to my place, but before she would come in she tore off her black and white toga and insisted I hang it out of the living-room window. Actually a flag of some sort with black with a white cross. I'm glad to say that she did have underclothes, but a black bra with white crosses can be disconcerting.
Well, she slept it off and I went round to the local forensic lab to get her flask back. She had never stopped screaming for it in her sleep. When I got there I had no trouble finding it - I just had to follow a trail of unconscious white-coated chemists. I 'borrowed' a gas mask and corked the thing and left it in garden toolshed with the other toxic products.
It took a couple of days, but she eventually said she was feeling normal again - not that I really knew what 'normal' meant to her. Via internet we managed to hitch her a lift with another 'delayed' visitor. As we said goodbye I handed her the flask and she sobbed in gratitude - her pilot was already locking his lips.
"Wud yer like a sip o' me Tinner's Punch, just to say thank you again?"
I politely declined, having read in the morning paper that there had been a serious bout of food poisining in the local forensic lab.
She rang me this morning to thank me again, and to tell me that her Pasty Pilot licence had been suspended, but by next year she would have it back and stop off to see me. I simply said she ought perhaps stop here on the way TO Cornwall, and get someone else to drive on the way home!
Sorry I've been so long, but what else can you do on a cold and dank Boxing Day, when the kids have gone and you're still in the process of digestion and distillation. Oh yes, I've got a PhD for that too -
Progressivus hepatitis Distillatus.
Love to all and may 2005 bring peace and happiness.