Today Jasper Fingle appeared at my door, pale and obviously terrified. The bones of our ancestor have returned to his garden, and appear to be digging. I went to observe this for myself, and a crowd soon gathered at the scene. These disturbingly animate remains clearly have some intelligence guiding them. I watched the uncanny figure scraping soil with bare bone. Some of our local boys attempted to discourage it, but it proved as oblivious to clumps of dirt as to heckles. I returned later in the day to find the hole much enlarged. At dusk, our first ancestor pulled a second skeletal form from the ground. It was an eerie sight. How many more of them are there? And what will become of us if they are liberated? Will we all return to walk as bones in the fullness of time?
Two nights ago, panicked members of the Chevin family called Reverend Davies out to one of their cottages. I happened to be visiting the orphanage when the summons came, went along, and so was witness to the horrendous screams, terrifying cries and eye-watering smells emerging from that place. Even though certain of the Chevins have reputations for not maintaining standards, it was clear something far worse than normal was afoot. Instructed to remain outside, I watched our brave Reverend enter the property, Bible in one hand, bottle of holy water in the other.
In the poor light, I could see little, but I give you my words, dear readers, that something vile and unnatural was inside that cottage. I saw it leave, but have not words to express the horror of it. The dry rustle of its wings, the clatter of bone, or chitin, or many beaks – it seemed to have all of these attributes and more. For a moment it turned its single, glowing eye towards me, and I thought my heart would stop beating from fear. Reverend Davies emerged, and the monstrosity fled from him.
When I asked our Reverend to explain what I had seen, he shook his head. “There are some things it is best not to know, but we are not alone here. Where there is faith, there is hope.”
Yes folks, this Sunday is the day to get your spade out, before the ground freezes. The first frosts will have softened up the black eyed meese, and there’s no shortage of them under the hedges and in dank corners this year.
I find it works best to gather them into on old pot, cup or other lidless container, for ease of lifting in the spring, and to bury them at a depth of about a foot. A thick layer of kitchen scraps will help them grow. However, from experience it is best to give them only vegetable matter. Meese who are given meat scraps frequently turn out aggressive.
This week the Chevin family buried Gospels Chevin (deceased, aged 97) Saw Hermitage Chevin married to his cousin Glory Chevin, and had a Christening for David Chevin, the rather eccentrically named son of Hallelujah and Obediance Chevin. They have been busy! Everyone else seems to have been very quiet indeed.
Last night’s meeting at the Town Hall was a remarkable gathering, and I’ve not seen the place so crowded in years. Balthazar Lemon’s bridge plan has everyone talking. For anyone who wasn’t there, the man responsible for our island’s lighthouse plans to build a bridge connecting us to the mainland.
Unlike many of us, Mister Lemon was not born on Hopeless, and has seen something of the world. He is certain it can be done, and that science will defeat the currents where seamanship cannot. The bridge project calls for flotation devices, and a modest quantity of wood, which might be salvaged from derelict houses so save on work. On paper, it looks tremendously complicated to me, but one cannot help but be impressed by the sheer scale of Balthazar Lemon’s vision.
Imagine the possibilities, dear readers, if we are able to walk across the sea to the mainland! Think of the wonderful benefits, the opportunities for our younger people! We will be able to import coffee rather than depending on the odd shipment washing ashore! There might be proper whiskey on a regular basis rather than the eye watering stuff Doc Willoughby ferments – from what I dare not speculate! Balthazar Lemon needs your help, your spare timber, and whatever time you can donate to this most excellent cause. Let us build our way out of isolation and into a bright future!
It’s a tradition whose origins are lost, and a very fine piece of our local heritage. This Sunday’s Apple Procession begins at the Church at 10am after the Apple Blessing service. Following the green dancers in their foliage attire, and the drummers, the Procession will then make its way around the island’s farms. Hopefully this year’s drummers will have some sense of rhythm between them. (I shudder, recalling the horrors of trying to march to last year’s attempts).
We will be following the traditional route, but, after numerous requests, the wild apple tree at the end of Silver Street will be our first port of call. While each farmer will be providing buckets of blood for the traditional blessing, those attending are welcome to carry their own as well. As ever, bring gifts to hang in the trees – ribbons are good. Make sure whatever you bring is dead before you try and tie it to anything, or anyone. If the weather holds, it should be an excellent day out. The Crow will be supplying a range of apple themed dishes in the evening to round of the festivities.
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