Saturday, December 22, 2012

Bicycles, Beer, Eggs, Chips and Salami.

I had to go shopping on a bicycle today. It was a frigging nightmare. Luckily the snow had stopped and some rain had sort of made the pathway only semi-suicidal. Oh the irony!

I have totally rewritten the chapter about the history of Rhodesian bikes taking me for a ride and here I am, an old tired man and I am forced to mount another invention designed to kill me.

I haven’t thought up a name yet for this contraption that has been leant to me. It was designed for the Jolly Green Giant, not Miserable Shortarse Greenberg. Still, no pain, no gain and with supplies running low, I strapped on the little suitcase to the back and with trusty rucksack on my back went off into the Bavarian countryside towards the few shops eking out a living. I mean this city (CITY!, oh give over, they don’t even have a post office), makes Gokwe look like a tourist resort.

So I peddle away, skinny bum hurting from the even skinny saddle, thighs aching and after what seemed an eternity, get to this place where they have a Penny discount supermarket, a 1 Euro junk shop and KiK clothes and cheap shite store. Ironically, opposite is a huge Porsche car dealer. Not that you actually see many customers crossing the road in either direction. The lot looking at the Porsches wouldn’t be seen dead at Penny and those spending a penny (or 1 Euro) were lucky to, well, have heels on their shoes.

In KiK, I am very pleased to get three pairs of warm socks for three Euros. I need them as quite few of my socks have some serious holes in them. I also reluctantly, had to buy another winter jacket because the last one I bought from the same shop has been used for work. (Yes, I do occasionally work.) I was hoping to get the same jacket. Sadly they had sold out. But I grabbed a compromise and off I went to the next place.

Heading back home, and a small detour past the cemetery where a passing car nearly put me in it because I forgotten that they drive backwards here, I screamingly forked out over eight Euros for some fag filters and papers. Mounting the monstrosity, it was back down to the ‘local’ supermarket Netto. Luckily for me they had restocked the Weissbeer from my last visit and before any other alcoholics laid claim to them, I had 4 by 6 plastic bottles of the stuff in my trolley.

Then it is push the wheeled basket to my all time favorite hole – the deposit machine. Cracking fun. You fire all your empties into it and the fancy lasers and spinning wheels and stuff do a right merry jig examining what you just placed in it. Then satisfied, it takes it away and you feed in the next one. Not too fast hey, because in Netto, they do all sorts (not like Penny which only crushes the plastic bottles), Netto even takes glass bottles and tins! Amazing. Thing is, behind the hole is a rather complicated set up and if you feed your empties too quick some bird starts chirping nastily in German because the whole lot has piled up and is now crashing onto the floor. Great laugh.  Me thinks the crooked Brits could have a ball here. Load up trucks full of all the flotsam of plastic bottles and tins littering most of the country; drive down and with a scanned real code fraudulent sticker on the shit, they could make a bloody fortune fucking the Krauts over again whilst cleaning up there own backyard. I kid you not. There is serious dosh to be made. Here, the Bavarians don’t believe in the British hogwash about cheap beer causing binge drinking, so half a litre of top class beer is still only 33 cents…but, the deposit on the bottle is 15! How about that then? That’s why you don’t see any binge drinkers here – they can’t hang around because they too busy bringing the empties back. It is called exercise and keeps them fit.

So, back to me stocking up for Xmas on my own (thank God); I had to be very rational. They are rather Holy Joes here and shops are not open on Sundays or public holidays. I needed four days supplies. Food isn’t a problem, beer is. So calculating my future input down to the last sip till reload, along with a frozen chicken and a special offer tin of ravioli and a giant 500 gramme tube of salami (plus a few small bits and bobs), it is with huge fear and difficulty I strap the bulging case onto the rack and stick the exploding rucksack on my back.

I set off and nearly get creamed at the first bend as the dangerously flexing machine seems to have taken a mind of it its own and not even shouting in fluent Bavarian at it “Verdamt Sheisse ich wird dich Schmelzen Sie unten in Sarggriffe,” (roughly translated – “You damn shit, I will have melted down into coffin handles.”), seemed to help.

Then, to add more problems to this death ride, this thing has more gears than the average shift changes of African dictators. In my panic I start to get confused between up and down and nearly spilt a gut on the up and scream hysterically on the downs because I can’t peddle fast enough to change the gears back to up or fucking down or I haven’t a clue, and my left hand is desperately trying to keep a huge mound of beer on the back from tipping off and making the foraging crows pissed out their boxes from the exploded contents on the pathway whilst negotiating snow slush, shouting at old biddies insisting on taking their mangy dogs for a walk just at the moment I am risking life and limb to quench a fucking serious thirst I have now worked up because I am sweating like a kosher pig.

Which now brings us to eggs, chips and salami. You see, as I unpacked, shaking all over from the exertion and the fact that somehow I had survived (oh, I have one of those weighing things and for a laugh, it turns out rack pack was 18 kg and rucksack 9 kg), I pulled out this huge sausage of salami and suddenly remembered a little anecdote I forgot to put into a chapter called - ‘Food, food everywhere, but not a thing to eat.’

I quickly noted this down - as you do when you’re a writer. But as I put things away (beer) into the fridge and some down my gasping gullet, a sneaky plan dawned. So sneaky – you’re reading it, because in a way those two chapters about food and bicycles suddenly combine and leap forward three decades. Well, you will have to read them but, as far as the salami is concerned –

Sometimes even my step-mum Katherine, surpassed herself in burnt offerings that even my Jewish father would consider God may have thought it was taken a bit too far. He would gabble some lies about it being wonderful, but sadly his palette wasn’t quite up to it. But not to worry hey, he sort himself out and dash into the kitchen and one, two, three, potatos peeled and chop, chop, chop, ten slices of (kosher) salami fired into the chip pan and just as the aroma hit my quivering nostrils (as I was forced to attempt to consume the muck on my plate), in went two fried eggs. The greasy pile would be devoured before my starving eyes without a hint of guilt.

Guess what I am having for dinner tonight? Well not quite, it seems the eggs are knocking on a bit, so it is fried salami and ravioli.

Now, if any moaners think I can snick this chapter into the next book, well think about it. You are getting it now on credit…HEY!


Suki said...

Dear Numb Bum,

Now you have made me feel really guilty - you having Salami and ravioli (what a mix) and I am sitting here eating home-made leek & potato soup, washed down with Baileys liquer!

Thank you for the chapter on credit - times are harsh all over!

What would you have done if it was still snowing and you could not get out for essential booze? Not thought of brewing your own or even better having a still?

Here is another suggestion - use holey socks to pad bike seat. Rhodies make plans and you guys normally make sure your rear ends are comfy....

This side of the pond, shoppers have been panic buying - on top of the end of the world stash, so feel your trip was easier.Stiff upper lip!

Good man - you survived! Need to get your butt toughened up bud!

Cheers and good health to you.

Karl (aka Lore) said...

Many thanks for the lovely comment. Could you be so kind and post the recipe of home-made leek & potato soup, washed down with Baileys liquer!

Suki said...

Will do - busy at the moment reading your book! Take you to bed as bedtime occupation! Trust you survived the rigours of Cmas day and do notneed to wobble out for more supplies.

ps - that proving you are not a robot business is shyte! How is a person supposed to type a picture?nmPausi 171

Carron Reddy said...

Ha Ha what a coincidence Suki! He is my bedtime companion too.

Agree about the robot business it is shite.

Suki said...

Hello daar

The book is done! Now what am I going to take to bed and then be put to sleep with?

Have in my mind what I want to say but not sure as people tend to be mentioned in your books and I would hate to trek over and beat you up! Trying to give it up.....

Not bad old boy! Lots smiles....Do you want feedback on BSAP site or Amazon?

Enjoy Carron - the book is worth it!

Just don't let him know we both had him in bed.....He may get his "stud" status back again.

Another thought Carron - he must be scared of robots!

Over and out