Storm Damage

As some of you will already have been told on frantic little postcards, the phone lines (and therefore this journal) have been out of action for the last few days. There was on Wednesday night, I am told, an uncommonly spectacular electrical storm. Apparently there were celestial pyrotechnics on a scale almost-unknown at this latitude. And I slept through it all, when even Miss Dog was pacing wringing her paws and looking anxiously out at the garden lit by flashes of sheet-lightning like something in a tale of terror.
Talking of which Dr Biswell and I have had a bright notion for just such a tale. For complex reasons, we were reading together a catalogue of courses available at a centre for alternative this and that. We were riveted by an advertised shamanism course whose promotional literature contrived to convey quite clearly that this was a boys’ game without saying so in so many words. What, we mused, if one of these sessions is in progress, the rings dancing across the drum-head like good ones, the wolf-yodel rising to the stripped-pine rafters, and of a sudden a participant genuinely makes it to the spirit world and starts to speak with the authentic voice of the ancients. We think that the ancients were sometimes really rather judgemental and uncaring people, so we imagine that the messages coming forth would not be particularly, um, sharing.
In an hour, we are going out to play again with fencing for the sheep. Dr Biswell has a theory. In its first manifestation as felt-pen lines and dashes on Scotland’s Sunday paper it looked dashed impressive. They broke out yesterday, thinking that they were secure as Dr Biswell was just returning from “clearing” in Manchester as current argot styles it. They had forgotten thatI was armed with a proper Scottish rural stick with a horn crook on top of it. Thus equipped for the more toile de jouy end of animal husbandry, imagine my surprise (imagine the sheep’s surprise) at finding that, some ancestral reflex having kicked in, it is possible to catch a sheep with the crook bit and that the caught sheep cannot escape thereafter.

2 Responses to “Storm Damage”

  1. patricia bruckmann Says:

    With lunging practice you could, in two attempts, use the Canadian Hay Fork to push them back. Even one might do the trick, since the sight of the weaponmight terrify the remaining three.

    You might also try brandishing the Fork, crying all the while, “By virtue of the Most Holy Trinity, thus do I command thee, recalcitrant sheep, to get thee into thy fold.”

    Worth a bash.

  2. dr biswell Says:

    Actually, we have been singing authoritarian hymns to depress the ovine escape committee:

    I was a wandering sheep,
    I did not love my fold,
    I did not love my shepherd’s voice:
    I perished in the cold.

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