Monday, October 25, 2004

Bonnie Prince Harry

We have just returned from an amazing weekend with our spiritual mentor Claire Voyant. She invited us onto her houseboat, The Claire Buoyant, which she moors at Bonnie Doon. We'd been wanting to go to the Doon for some time as some of our friends in the Police Force have shacks and ponies up there and they always look refreshed when they come back.

Our visit brought home to us the severity of the water shortage and global warming. It was hot and the dam was alarmingly low. The receding water line made it very difficult to get to The Claire Buoyant as she was almost 500 metres from the original shoreline. Murray (Claire's Bush Poet Boyfriend) had fashioned a chain and some old fence posts into a climbing aid (similiar to the chain that infidels use to climb Uluru) so that we could get down the muddy banks with our luggage.

After a delicious lunch, cooked by Murray, of BBQ'd Redfin, potato salad and a glass of Turkey Flat Rose, Claire asked us if we'd mind her getting in a quick ski. Riding with Murray up the front of the speedboat, we were privileged to witness the natural agility that saw Claire crowned Miss Barefoot Moomba, 1965.

Later that night, which was clear and still, we played euchre with Claire and Murray. Claire was taking trick after trick and it was getting a bit boring. All of a sudden Claire dropped her hand and started rocking in her chair, then she started speaking in what we thought were tongues. Murray instinctively grabbed the scoring pencil and started scribbling. We just eased back into our chairs and savoured the reprieve from Claire's merciless card game. When it all died down and Claire had wiped her mouth, Murray turned to us and asked if we were familiar with Yumpla Tok or Torres Strait Broken, which of course, we weren't. Murray, who's really into linguistics, reckons Yumpla Tok is the post-contact language of Thursday Islanders and other indigene of the Torres Strait. He said he knew for a fact that Claire does not speak Yumpla Tok, nor has she been to Thursday Island, so it had to be 'from the other side'. He told us the visitant warned of a 'gap closing in on her boy' and also 'mind the snap'. We took note of this message and dealt a fresh hand.

The next day we are at the milk bar getting Claire some smokes. The guy behind the counter notices our Royal Tour 1982 T-Shirts and asks us if we've heard the latest on Prince Harry (he called him Ginger Meggs). We say no, so he directs us to The Age where we see Harry, a sad and troubled soul, caught in a crossfire of flashbulbs. The young prince has lashed back at the paparazzi. They are saying that his gap year has been a complete disaster and the headlines read 'Harry Snaps'. It seems that yet again Claire was spot on, and to realise we had been in the same houseboat as Lady Di last night sent us shivers.

We return to The Buoyant and upon seeing our ashen faces, Claire fixes us a shandy. As we pour out our worries for the third in line to the British (and Our) throne, Claire embraces us and whispers "Remember what I've told you, he will be fine, " into our ears. Murray joins us in a group hug.