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6.4.09

Milton’s last picture


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Juan thinks that we will have a long wait for the train and, opening a barrel of Allt a Bhainne, for inspiration, he settles down to work on this year’s editions of his memoirs. A few seconds later, he throws his quill away and shouts that it’s no use, he can’t remember anything. I remind him that, as millions of women are waiting to read this year’s edition of his memoirs, he should try to write something, even if he makes it up, he snarls that, if he wanted to write fiction, he’d become a poet, and adds that his readers are sophisticated ladies of leisure and expect to read insightful gossip from the court, rather than uninformative meanderings about gusty camels.

I say that there must be something more interesting to write about and, digging into my bag, I find some photographs and give one of them to Juan, hoping it will jog his memory. He looks at it for a long time and then says that he vaguely remembers one of our friends, Milton Macduff, from Buchanhaven, taking photographs of the young men dancing in Doa. I remind Juan that Milton, unfortunately, forgot that Yafouba men don’t like being photographed, which is why they ate him. Join says that that is very sad, but stupid, and would hardly interest his readers. Looking for something else, more interesting, I hand Juan pictures of Humperdinkestine but, shuffling through them, he says that, as they don’t contain pictures of Mahalath doing the dance of the seven veils, they aren’t worth looking at. I agree, but, unable to think of anything else interesting to offer, I open barrels of Vintage Macduff, Miltonduff and Duff’s Defiance Private Reserve and offer toast after toast to the adventurous, if foolhardy, spirit of Milton, then, with our train lentorishly behind schedule, we blow up our bagpipes and, marking time and playing ‘Duff’s Lament’ and ‘Duff Doon the Hatch’ we revolve on the spot, as fast as we possibly can.

Professor Humperdink’s Diary