The Ghost of Christmas Past — 16 Comments

  1. Another good read mate! I have 40 year old drunken memory of hiring a death trap scooter on Corfu. I took it for a ride to nowhere in particular, negotiated a tight right hand bend onto a very steep slope. No brakes! Ended up bloodied on the beach. If you encounter a square meter of skin twisting slowly in the wind, it’s mine! I think that was nisaki?

  2. By the way merry Christmas to you and yours. PS I’m in a critical care unit in Newcastle, and very happy to be here. No visiting in-laws, Christmas lunch and all the other bollocks. By the time I get out it will all have passed!

  3. ” It was my first Christmas away from home, and in a country that didn’t celebrate Christmas.”

    SNAP! In my case it was somewhere even more exotic and foreign than Nepal: Wolverhampton. A Xmas spent in the company of several young women and not so young women in a squat, Colonel Merrydown and James Beam. Memories blur but I recall a half naked Australian woman of Italian descent teaching me how to cook a real Spag Bol (found out years later that was bollocks btw), Sex to Vivaldi on the mono tape player and Austrian Xmas biscuits. It was also where I met the love of my life- Mistress Nicotiania.

  4. I had a bar in Nisaki for a couple of years back in 2003 – 2005 (hence the username), but I didn’t notice any dried skin flapping around! 🙂

    I don’t envy you being in hospital – I bloody hate hospitals, and do everything I can to avoid them. Sometimes, though, there is no choice in the matter. Last time for me was about 7 – 8 years ago, when I had to spend a few days in the hospital in Ioannina having a hernia repaired. I couldn’t get out of the place fast enough.

  5. That’s a great link, BD. Those photos really take me back. I’ll bookmark that for future use.

    The squat sounds like fun. Memories are made of stuff like that. I look back sometimes and think “How the fuck did I wind up in that situation?” The answer, of course, is that I was young, crazy, and seemingly immortal.

  6. Way I see it, you’ve got the religious bit about a carpenter’s wife what knocked up by some form of rather arrogant ethereal force what made a big issue that his bastard be given a whole stack of attention, despite the fact its cuckolded “father” had fucked up and sprog was birthed in a filthy barn.

    So the real father manages to light up the sky, day and night mind you, with a really bright light – and that results in a fantastic number of financial contributions from a whole stack of really rich people, so ensuring said carpenter and missus are set up for life.

    Sprog of course disappears from view until it’s old enough to wreak havoc on the religious, political and social establishment, until he becomes such a pain in the arse that they arrange for him to be killed.

    But they do it all right and proper, following Roman law and getting the local bigwig to sanction it, basically because the establishment managed to get a bunch of “protesters” to bray for his blood.

    And they wanted the bastard shut up real fast, so the vinegar, then the spear bit.

    Go along with that and 25 December allows you to allow in the only son sent to save us.

    Or you can go with that business of Santa doing the whole planet in one night, slinging presents into socks and munching on mince pies at each and every stop over.

    Works with kids until age 6, though they’ll go along with it because they’re manipulative buggers and they’ll get bigger, better presents if it’s seen they come through a middleman who they can write to. Used to be that list was bunged into the fireplace and Santa’s elves would make sense of it. Now they post it to Santa at the north Pole. (And here’s the address:

    Being a little more prosaic, the shops are shut here on the 25th and 26th, so yes there’s reason to stock up just in case so and so drops by with the kids.

    However as you’ll doubtless recall from your time as bar owner that many expat Brits are very lucrative business for a “traditional” Christmas Lunch, usually associated with stacks of mulled wine (uses up all the cheap and crappy stuff they couldn’t flog).

    What’s amusing is it’s caught on big time in the UK, with some high end eateries charging up to 85 quid a head for food only – and you gotta book early!

    And all this on account of a carpenter’s wife being sexually violated a couple of thousand years ago!

  7. “curmudgeonliness (is that a word?)”
    I think you had it right with
    ” I tend to be somewhat curmudgeonly about the whole affair, and find all the false bonhomie rather tiresome.” -so, curmudgeonlyness, curmudgeonlyisness curmudgeonishness,curmudgeoness, who can tell… ?

    It was a flat tired joke for me putting up the fake xmas tree here last week;- without spirit, but as a repeat, to see what came of it;-

    I’d saved a boxed old 3-section 2m high artificial xmas tree from building demolition as I exited the old place 3 1/2 yrs ago, didn’t erect it the first year, but on the 2nd did, along with decorations gained free, for a laugh, a try-out, an affectionate touch-stone to long ago childhood times, the last time I remembered a Christmas tree – even though plastic – I did think of spraying with organic spruce or pine oil mist! ;- and after missing the 1st year I left it up all the way through the 2nd year;- colour, decoration.

    Then I took it down early last year… and only last week got it out again.

    In the same corner.

    Oh well, it’s been background for the last few SBD appear ins!
    But I had no real joy in it.
    Maybe we really are up to date …

    I’ve been much more enthusiastic about growing herbs and salad vegetables on the balcony.
    That’s a great ongoing exercise! ;=})
    Have to read up again on Companion Planting, next…


  8. It is when someone is pressing their thighs over your ears…..

    Cunnilingus -if you can hear the music you’redoing it wrong.

  9. All that and ‘Happy New Year’, we have made it, somehow, thru another one.

    That is a real reason to celebrate, I guess.

  10. Indeed, Gary. When you get to our age, you become acutely aware of the meaning of mortality, and reaching the end of yet another year comes as a pleasant surprise! 🙂

  11. Christmas: what is so wonderful about a religion that started with adultery and ended in suicide?

    Nisakiman, wishing you

    Many sexual arousals
    Cuddly toys in bed.
    Gnomes in the kitchen.
    Ducklings in the bath.
    Pink elephants on the wallpaper.
    But especially a fantastically beautiful,
    cozy and brilliant year!

  12. Well that list of good wishes is a little out of the ordinary, I must say! 🙂

    Thanks, and same to you!