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29.3.10

To Selborne





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Bakulebe does not like driving trains in Britain as, he says, the signalling system and headlamp code is too complicated. This problem is made worse as his knowledge of British railways comes primarily from the writings of Euphemia Humperdink who, in certain editions of her book, 'The World's Railways and How They Work', included some deliberate errors, this, she claimed, was to confuse the enemy; nobody quite knows which enemy she was referring to, but it certainly confuses Bakulebe who, distrusting the signalling system, ignores a stop sign and ploughs into the Waterloo-Exeter-Plymouth fish express.

Badly bruised, covered with fish, and very irritated, Bakulebe refuses to carry on until Britain simplifies its railway signalling systems. This is quite reasonable, but we can't afford the delay as we are postliminiously behind schedule and, after breaking open barrels of Vintage Glenesk, Balvenie, Laphroaig, and Pulteney Founders Reserve, to help us consider the problem, we decide to send a message to aunt Humperdink to ask for her advice. The nearest agency communication centre is in Selborne so, after offering toast after toast to Bakulebe, our wonderful train driver, we blow up our bagpipes and, playing 'O For Ane An' Twenty, Tam', and 'The Weary Pund O' Tow' we stagger towards Selborne, as fast as we possibly can.

Professor Humperdink's Diary