A Noel Guthrie Acrylic on canvas

A Noel Guthrie Acrylic on canvas
The Cockabully Hunters --- from an original painting by Noel Guthrie

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Repositories of the Morning Mail.

The air was crisp in that rural village where I sketched these mail boxes.  Frost lay on the ground, like millions of tiny diamonds, sparkling in those first rays of a burnt orange sun, heaving itself above the distant horizon.
My fingers were blue with the cold, and  I was blowing on them as this stranger appeared at my side for a chat.  I thrust my hands deep into my pockets, for a bit of warmth,  while we exchanged a few pleasantries, such as the state of the economy and the mothering instincts of a clay pigeon.   He appeared to be dying to ask me what I was doing, as if it wasn't blatantly obvious.  Eventually, he got around to suggesting that the landscape, in this neck of the woods was quite something.  I had to agree with him on that score, but reminded him, that was not what I was doing.  "Oh."  He said.  "Well what are you doing?"  I pointed to the mail boxes across the road, "I am interested those boxes over there," and opened my sketch book.
"Good God man, what the hell do you see in those things, they are a blot on the landscape."  With a quick "see ya,"  he ambled off down the road, in the direction of what I assumed was his home.  As he crossed the verandah, I heard him say to someone beyond my line of sight.  "You wouldn't believe it, that dickhead over there is sketching those old mail boxes!"
I had to smile, he was probably right about the dickhead bit.  Here I was sitting on my stool in the cold, freezing to death.  But then I was not all that concerned what he thought,  I was enjoying myself and what I was doing.  I saw numerous shapes and sizes that appealed to me.  One or two appeared to be newish, introducing recent immigrants to the district, while others proudly displayed their battle scars through years of conflict with the elements
My recent visitor, obviously having lived here for many a year, just took for granted these 'repositories of the morning mail'.






Sunday, 4 September 2011

My run in with the law.

I was recently reminded of a little incident that occurred during the late 1970's in New Zealand.
You see, I had been into the city on an errand, and that day I had the trailer on behind the car.  To cut a long story short, I was minding my own business on my way home when this traffic cop pulled alongside on his flash 750cc motor bike, indicating me to pull over. 
All sorts of things ran through my mind at a hundred miles an hour, what the hell did he think he was doing, I had done nothing wrong, well, not intentionally.
He climbed off his machine, I swear to God he looked no older than sixteen, but I suppose he was twenty five. 
"Hello Sir," he said with this smirk on his face.  It must have been slim pickings that morning, he was probably thinking, 'ha, got one at last.'
"Have you got a warrant for this trailer Sir," he smiled.
"Course I've got a warrant, I'm not that stupid," I growled.
" I can't see it Sir."
"Well, it's there, I'll just show you."   I walked around the back of the trailer and rubbed the mud off the little plastic holder,  "There, I told you I had one."
"Looks a bit dirty Sir," he said, "are you sure you have a current warrant Sir."
"What do you mean, you don't believe me." I said.
"Well, no its not that Sir."
"What is it then? Look, I'll damn well show you," I said half running to the car to grab a screwdriver,  I was going to show this baby face cop, we are not all dipsticks.
The young cop could see what I was going to do and said.  "No, no don't worry I believe you."
"No bugger it," I grumbled, "you questioned my honesty, so I'm going to screw that plate off and show you."
I was sore that this young bloke had stopped me for such a minor thing, why the hell did he not go out and catch some of these people who were really breaking the law.
I finally got the face off the plastic holder and stood back, all proud of myself. "There, see for yourself ," I said, a smile on my face.
The young cop bent down and had a look, still with the same stance, looked back at me with half a smile and half a smirk.  He finally stood up, and moved to his bike.
"Satisfied now," I scoffed at him, I thought he was going to ride away.
But he lifted his book out of the bag on the back and walked back, with a satisfied smile on his face.
"What?" I said.
He still never said a word, just had this stupid annoying look on his face.
I bent down to look at the warrant, it all looked in order to me.  I saw the date written clearly in the square, and in big letters at the top of the ticket where the word  April was printed.  "So," I said to him, "what's the problem?"
 "What month is it Sir?" He says to me, with a little snigger.
What month, what is this?  Perhaps he's a bit slow, you know?  "Oh I dunno,"  I said,  " it was July, when I left home this morning."   "July!!" 
Me and my big mouth, I was two months overdue with my warrant.  Now who was the dipstick, aye.