Friday, June 13, 2014

The Legend of the Gokwe Kid and the Witchdoctor.

A story for children 8-12 years of age.

Now, gather around the camp fire children for Uncle Karl will tell you a nice goodnight story.

Once upon a time, deep in the bush of the badlands of Gokwe, the great Kid was on another goddamn patrol. Feeling a tad dizzy from a stinking hot yellow ball cooking his head, he heard a right ruckus coming from a patch of dry elephant grass.

Such a screaming and roaring did pound his ears in time with his boiling blood and mindful of his police pledge to help the innocent, he rushed over to the scene. What a sight to behold, for lo, a big black mane lion was having a merry old time chewing off the leg of a witchdoctor. The poor old man was howling a ballyhoo fit to burst a gut.

Now the Kid was in a bit of a pickle and as he watched the grey soil change colour into a deep shade of red, suitable to grow great mealies, he scratched at his sweaty, itchy hole in a desperate bid to switch his brain on. You see, there could be evil gooks lurking around and filling the lion with hot lead could alert them to his presence. Not only that, he might miss and accidentally kill the man and get charged for murder!

“Bass, Bass, pliss hilp me pliss,” the terribly injured man pleaded in barely comprehensible English, as his uninjured leg thrashed about looking for a bucket to kick.

“Never fear, Shamwari, for the Kid is here, I will save you,” he explained and placed his trusty rusty bayonet on the end of his FN assault rifle.

Grabbing the giant pussy cat’s tail, he lifted it up to expose his target and with one arm, powered by adrenalin, neatly freed the lion's sweetbreads from its body. Well, as you can imagine, that took the now enraged beast by surprise and with bulging eyeballs released the witchdoctor’s leg and throwing its huge head back, let out a mighty roar... Except it sounded more like a bog standard moggy ally cat tom, down at the vets and getting neutered without anaesthetic.

It was of a such high decibel range that the Kid's sunglasses were shattered. Half blind and realising that the lion would soon conclude it wouldn't be doing much cub making anymore, and decide on revenge, he thrust with all his strength the bayonet all the way up to the magazine in the lion's brown eye – killing it instantly.

Quickly finding his first aid kit, the Kid found his spare shoelaces and in a jiffy had stopped the
witchdoctor’s bleeding.

“Dank U Baas, dank U. I great witchdoctor and grant you one wish for safing me.”

The exhausted Kid collapsed and without thinking - “I want a 12 inch penis.”

And so children, as the picture shows, the Kid didn't quite get what he wanted but he still has it and shows it off now and then. The End. Any questions?

“Yes,” said a little girl of ten, “this is so cute, I want one also.”

“I'm afraid you will have to wait till your at least 16.”

“How did you get your rifle out the lion?” asked an observant 9 year old boy.

“That is a very sticky question because rigor mortis had set in. So throwing caution to the wind, the Kid emptied the entire magazine, blasting the lion's head all over the trees and then, after removing the magazine, thrust his arm down its exposed throat, and pulled the rifle out, lock, stock and smoking barrel.”

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Rhodesians Worldwide Magazine

Hah, how about this hey! Cool beans or what. This is the latest RWW magazine. Great little rag and well worth subscribing to. I will certainly continue and place more adds.

On the back cover is (top right) Dave Parrington. He is mentioned in a chapter of StP. We went to the same school, Mount Pleasant High, Salisbury, Rhodesia and the same swimming club. Dave (as you know), went onto represent Zimbabwe in the 1980 Olympics as a diver.

I never could work out what made people walk a plank freely, hop around on it like some semi-naked crazed druggie, leap high into the air and then perform terrible contortions of writhing pain, before piling 30 feet, head first, into the bottom of a 15 foot deep pit full of ice water. Madness!
Now he is a top notch head coach in America. (And a member of FB TGK.)

Bottom left – the one and only The Gokwe Kid, chillaxing with the last copy of RWW in Mühldorf am Inn, Bavaria, Germany. As for my aquatic career with MP swimming club. I hated every moment of it. All those beefy lads with shoulders the same as Arnold Schwarzenegger, and legs that could kick start a jumbo jet, would with gleeful shouts leap into the water and swim faster than a starving shoal of piranhas.

Me, with my half starved, skinny form shivering in fear, would hesitatingly put an emaciated large toe in the water and screech as I immediately received frostbite. At this point some bastard usually pushed me in. Even the piranhas didn't bother wasting energy stripping a bit of shrivelled flesh from my bones.

Two years I put up with this torture. (I did love the trips to Beira though.) My Daddy had wanted me to become a champion. But I finally quit after entering the 4 by 100 metres individual madly, at the annual 'let's race each other' competition. It was supposed to last only a day but dragged on for another two as people screamed enthusiastically at me to hurry up.

I recall, treading water, whilst having a breather on the second lap, shouting back -

“What is all the fuss about? There is no one behind me!”

Monday, June 09, 2014

The Gokwe Kid and the Mystery of the Plastic Meat.

Sometimes even I worry about me. That is because no one else does. No one phones, no one pops around, no one invites me out. T
hat is because they think I am a weird. Even my own children avoid me. The people I work for placed me in an apartment at the end of a cull in a sack on the outskirts of town, to rot away without causing too much chaos to their idyllic, peaceful life.

Well, last night, whilst cooking the pork belly, I noticed a funny smell. A bit like burning plastic and then BOOM, everything went off, plunging me into a shaft of light from the dying sun, via the loft window.

For a moment, in my panic, I thought maybe I had bought ornamental meat. I recalled when I nearly died in Rhodesia whilst visiting a china. Starving as usual, I spotted some fruit in a bowl. Grabbing a shiny, rosy apple, I took a huge bight and masticated like a an Ethiopian getting some Band Aid.
Suddenly, whilst my china stared in wonder, I noticed that it tasted rather odd. The nearest I can describe the waxy goo was when in one of my 'strange thoughts in my head', I wondered what a candle tasted like.

Anyway. With all the lights off, along with everything else, I found my torch by standing on it barefoot, nearly breaking a metatarsal, and went back to the hob to investigate. (I am not the greatest Bush detective for nothing hey!) To my horror, I realised I could have DIED. Some complete idiot, had turned on the wrong ring, and instead of frying the pork belly, the back ring was frying the kettle's electric wire!

Totally traumatised, (I unplugged it, reset the fuses), cooked the pork belly, and still shaking with adrenalin, went early to bed...only to hear the fixed phone ring! I was already half asleep and in my delirium sort of listened with half an ear and brain as TGK member, Petra Thynne's, husband droned on the answering machine that he sadly can not meet up today because they are obligated as members of a Norwegian ex-pat club in Munich, that they must help in some ritual of seal pups clubbing down at the zoo.

And – just as I was using my own version of counting sheep (I pretend that I stole a nuclear submarine and loaded with missiles, I bomb places like Mecca and the Vatican), one of my mobile phones rings! Eish. I looked this morning. A Munich number. Very dodgy...

Thursday, June 05, 2014

The Gokwe Kid and Funny Money

The Gokwe Kid and Funny Money

The sun came out today and just for a change I slipped on a pair of shorts. They are rather old. I bought them at Vic Falls. They are nylon with plastic pocket zips and a cool logo of a white water raft and the words 'The Mighty Zambezi, Zimbabwe'.

They are still in good knick considering where they have been. I put a hand in a pocket and there I felt and heard a rustle that sounded familiar... money! Lo and behold... 15 Euros. My lucky day. I did work out where the dosh came from, but it made me recall a Gokwe story. It goes like this -

It was one of those days. Stinking hot and I am reduced to weeping over my rotten luck of ever joining the BSAP as five off us stumbled over rocks and dodged thorn bushes whilst weighed down in weapons of gook destruction. Yet again I was walking cannon fodder, when suddenly Point hollers out -
“Gooks- run for you lives!” And legs it asap past the bloke called 'up the rear'.

That was me. Awful job. In theory it meant that should you bump into any of the mad bastards, as last in the stick, you would be last to be taken out. The problem was that as part of the miserable way to claim an extra $3.75 tax free a day allowance towards a set of your own wheels, was that it made you dizzy. This was because you had stop walking forwards every 30 seconds and walk backwards to see if any gooks were snickering up that maybe were interested in your rear.

So. Actually, the exited constable at Point had called out something in Shona and ran over to a small bushy like tree. He was immediately followed by our other two black coppers who oohed and aahed and each broke a small branch off and put it in a pocket of their combat jackets.

With lunch time approaching, what the hell, take a break and ask what was going on.
“This, PO Greenberg,” said Point, pointing to some obscure green and brown thing growing out the ground, “IS A MONEY TREE.”

Hardly. I might being going blind from the sunlight and self indulgence but wasn't exactly seeing currency of any denomination dripping of its bedraggled arms. Okay. Us whiteys know this as kids from when we first got our pocket money. Every year you asked Daddy for a pay rise and every year received the same answer – 'money doesn't grow on trees'. A simple 'no' would have sufficed.

“Well, as I can't see any money on this tree, either you and your fellow companions are on some serious illegal drugs, or I am.”

“PO Greenberg. It works like this. You take a twig and bring it home. Then with your eyes closed, place it any pocket in your clothes cupboard and forget about it for a long time. A time will come when you need to go out but have no money. You then go through all the pockets and you will find some money!”

Ahh, I was starting to twig -”How much money?”, I blurted out with over excited half Jewish genes.

“Sometimes, just one dollar. Sometimes ten, I myself once found twenty.”

Now this was very interesting indeed. Last time I searched all my pockets in desperation I found five cents. It had been enough to phone my bank and ask for an overdraft – refused. So I immediately went to work hacking off branches with my sheaf knife and stuffing them in every pocket till not even a Selous Scout would have spotted me.

This was watched with bemusement of my black colleagues. After I realised I could barely walk...

“Ah, PO Greenberg , Sah. It will not work. You can only take one twig from one money tree.”

Rather disappointed I did as I was instructed.

Months go by, and I am stationed in Gwelo. I have a date. Unfortunately I am flat broke once again. Then I remembered and with great enthusiasm went through every pocket of every piece of clothing I had in the room. AND – Bingo! I found a dried out twig.

The Gokwe Kid and being duty Patrol Officer

Duty PO. Part 1.

Being duty PO in Gokwe for a week wasn't too bad except you were not allowed to go on the lash on Friday and Saturday nights down at the local 'whites only' 'Sports Club'. This was because you had to be fit and alert for anything that might happen during the dark hours that needed the expertise of a white police officer.

There were also some rather daft jobs to do as well. One included setting your alarm clock for three in the morning and check out if the black staff had posted alert guards all around the complex. At that time, you suddenly remember that you can't remember the password and it was a good chance your fellow constables might also have forgotten it.

So off you go, stumbling along in the dark, passing enough frightened flatulence to open up your own natural gas plant, when the dreaded noise comes -

“Halt, who goes by?”

I reply in terrified falsetto - “It is me, Don't shoot. PO Greenberg. I forgot the password!”

“Ah, PO Greenberg. It is okay. But very dangerous not to know the Password. Better you know it when you check out the others. Tonight's password is 'ZANU PF' ”

It took me a few seconds for this to sink in as the constable watched me carefully under the brilliant stars and half a moon.

“What the F? What madman thought that up? You can't go around replying to - 'Halt who goes by?' and say 'ZANU PF' ! It could get me killed!”

A rather shiny set of perfect white teeth appeared in a very black face in a smile. “I am joking Sah. The password is really ' Smart Aleck'.”

By now my befuddled brain was switching on a bit and I recognised the voice and going nearer confirmed it was my friend Sammy, who was now in fits of giggles.

“Very clever Sammy. I will get you back for this.”

After getting the proper password, I moved on. I don't recall ever beating him. His satire was better than mine...

(Sammy, plus a picture, is mentioned in The Gokwe Kid.)

Hitler and the Gokwe Kid

Well, what a performance. Weeks and weeks of no landline internet. That was because the bloke I was thieving the WiFi off changed providers and had the cheek to make it closed. So in the end I had to get my own. Oh well.

Then I couldn't log into my blog. I finally solved that when I realised I had blown up the screen so large, it had hid all the buttons.

Not to worry. I have some nice bits to amuse you. First off -