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Today's quote:

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Characters I've met!

Several years ago, we visited friends on Karragarra Island in Moreton Bay. It's a small island with a small population and everybody knows everybody. And everybody knows Geoff Long, a Pom who hasn't left the island in years.

At the time of our visit he owned several motorbikes which he maintained in pristine condition by keeping them in his house, one in each bedroom and another one in the lounge. How he had got them there is still a mystery to me as he lives in a highset house which he left unfinished for years, with no stairs going up and no plumbing inside. To do his ablutions, Geoff simply climbed down the scaffolding and used the public conveniences near the ferry stop.

We have just heard from the island again and my first question was, "How's the chap with the motorbikes?", which elicited this response:

"Geoff Long has given up on his motor bikes and is now heavily into keeping birds. Parrots that is. He now owns about five or six parakeets, a couple of budgies and a rascally galah who pecks at your feet and anything else he can get hold of. Geoff has turned his living room into a giant aviary which he furnishes with the branches of trees complete with leaves which the birds demolish all over the floor. Each week he has a massive sweep-up of leaves and bark and restocks the room with more foliage. He whistles constantly to communicate with his birds which is very irksome because one can't talk with him during that time. At 4.00 pm he saddles up and goes to see Pam for a coffee and a bun. He pushes his wheelbarrow, whistling away to himself, taking an assortment of birds along with him. One on each shoulder, one on his hat, and two riding shotgun on the front of the barrow."

If you ever feel Karra-geous enough to visit the island, look out for Geoff. He's the one with the birdshit all over his shoulders.

∙A mate of mine recently admitted to being addicted to brake fluid. When I quizzed him about it he reckoned he could stop any time.