The Perils of Possum Point is a work of fiction. Any resemblance between persons, organisations or events described here and actual persons, organisations or events is purely unintentional.

A Walk Along the Beach

After rolling the jeep, Ned became quite tense, and he had even developed a twitch in the corner of his mouth, which became active whenever John and glubglub visited. So he went across the way to Trevor McGill's cottage, the Garden of Paradise and Earthly Delights, to seek some advice.

"I see," said Trevor, seated cross legged in an overstuffed chair, and looking very learned with his long grey tobacco stained beard. He pulled slowly on his pipe. "So, calm down then," he said, profoundly.

"That's easy enough for you to say," said Ned. "You haven't had your house part way destroyed (twitch), or your automobile exploded (twitch)."

"Well, then you need to get away from it all."

"Too expensive. No time."

"Then, what you should do is, you should look inside yourself and find your special place," said Trevor, taking a deep draw on his pipe. "Go there to retreat from the annoyances of the world."

Ned thanked the local guru, and returned home. There, he found his special place, and lived in it for a while. But, as he said to himself, "this isn't getting me anywhere."

To which he responded, "I don't think you are supposed to actually move into your special place."

"You might start acting a little strange, I suppose."

"Quite barmy," he piped in.

"It's getting a little bit crowded in here," he concluded. And, with that, he left his special place and decided to talk a walk along the beach instead.

Having set out on his walk, Ned began whistling a tune to himself, which inevitably came out something like the doggie song. He was about to step back into his special place when he stepped into a pile of horse dung. Slightly annoyed now, he began to watch the path for more. It was littered all over the place.

There were large piles, and small piles, and bits strewn about, an some parts of the path were almost impassable as a result. It was of varying ages, and textures, and covered whole sections of the trail. So, Ned watched the ground carefully while he walked. In his concentration, he was startled by the sudden arrival of Mrs. Marmite Rumpolesbotham on a corpulent gelding, coming up behind with her two yapping mongrels in close pursuit.

"Did I startle you?" she exclaimed, as she passed by, in a shower of dust and dung. One of the dogs stopped, sniffed, growled at Ned, then took off after the mounted matron.

Ned retreated to his special place as the heavily laden hooves receded into the distance. Of course, this risked stepping in more horse dung, but, in his special place, they were having Tea.

He was interrupted in the middle of an intense debate on the future of cloning by the increasing roar of a motorcycle engine, which came up rapidly, stopped briefly while the young driver walked the bike around him, then took off again, spattering Ned with dust, dung and oil. He tried to say something like "No motor on this trail," but it wasn't loud enough to be heard above angry whine of the bike, and, besides, the fellow was long gone by the time he got the words out.

"Well, well," he said to himself.

"Well, indeed," came the reply.

But, again he was interrupted, this time by Mrs. Marmite Rumpolesbotham cantering back the other way. This time, she didn't say anything, perhaps being put off by Ned's angry grimace, and the twitch, which was acting up again. The mongrels came bounding afterwards, howling, and the whole lot disappeared in a cloud of dust and dung, and possibly fur. Ned sneezed, and turned about.

"A lot safer at home," he said. This time, he did not retreat to his special place, since it was becoming entirely too familiar. Instead, as soon as he reached his cottage and mused on the construction debris that still littered the back garden, he turned on the television.

There was a comedy program on house repairs (twitch), punctuated by ads about driving safely (twitch, twitch), and sporting news about horse (twitch) and motorbike (twitch) racing. So, Ned did the only thing possible at this point. He fell asleep.

Thus ended another day in Possum Point, where the waves lap in on a secluded beach, and the palm trees sway invitingly in the breeze, and nearly everyone is crazy.

 Copyright (c) 1996, 1997, 1998 Brian J. Dooley