Laughing My Way Round Dannevirke

Day Whatever + 5

Beautiful sunny morning in Dannevirke.

Couldn’t wait to get out the door. For some, walking out the door at the end of lockdown might be like getting out of prison.

Watched a video last night. My friend Tame Iti. Mentioned in passing that although his nine months in Waikeria Prison was good preparation for the lockdown, he’d much rather be in lockdown. I reckon. It’s all relative, as Albert Einstein might have said. Or might not.

Anyway. The sign at Waterloo and McPhee is still mangled. I suppose street sign maintenance is not an essential service. Pity that. Street sign maintenance is important.

A few more people on the street today.

Passed by one dude who was all covered up and wearing a mask. Maybe he thinks that you can catch COVID-19 from sunbeams. Or maybe he’s discovered that the ionising radiation of the sun can be dangerous, and that the non-ionising radiation from 5G towers is absolutely harmless.

Where the hell did that random loose thought come from?

Or perhaps he’s the street sign vandal responsibly covering up to prevent the spread of that virus.

I know, I know, I know, I hear you. You’re being a dopey bugger Ross. Well, one of the joys of life you know is allowing yourself to be a dopey bugger from time to time. Particularly in times like this. When you’re trying to think of something to write. But of course it’s really important to KNOW when you’re being a dopey bugger. That ability alone might disqualify you from becoming a politician you know.

Heading up a very small hill on Ruahine Street I passed this middle aged couple and dog. They were obviously not seasoned streetwalkers. Like me. For they were dressed like walkers in a hiking magazine. He had one hiking pole and she had two hiking poles. On the bloody paved street in town the dopey buggers, neither of them actually using the hiking poles to propel or steady themselves. But they looked the part, if only they’d been a few miles west in the Ruahine Ranges.

Then as I turned the corner onto Guy Street I came up behind a couple of middle aged guys walking and talking in formation, one in the middle of the footpath, the other out on the street itself. About four metres apart. Very carefully observing the correct social distance.

The one out on the street was dressed in shorts and T shirt. On the back of the T shirt were printed the words, “I didn’t do it”.

So I looked back to see if there was a turd in the middle of the street.

Satisfied that he wasn’t discarding infected faecal matter I joined the formation and completed the right triangle with the blunt end leading and me at the trailing sharp end. And so we progressed with me at a good fifteen metres social distance. Until I got sick of that and crossed the street and powered on past them.

Still wondering what it was that he claimed he didn’t do.

Quite a few dogs out this morning taking their humans for a walk. On leads of course. Responsibly. In these times when we are discovering that we humans (and huwomans) don’t actually rule the world, it might be time to question whether we domesticated the dog, or whether the dog domesticated us.

I didn’t dream that one up by myself. I read it somewhere a few years ago.

There was this one dog that looked exactly like his human.

Reminds me that a long time ago I tried to convince my children that the other animals invented zoos so that they could observe the human version.

One car at the BP petrol station, and a tanker delivering fuel. One young woman came out of the dairy on High Street with a bottle of Coke. Really. A corpulent young guy came out with a pack of cigarettes. At over $40 a pack I thought how glad I am that I gave it away on ANZAC Day 1983. Took me about 34 years to fully live up to Grandma Galloping Gertie’s advice about health.

Three people queueing at the Pharmacy. Two mobility scooters (and their drivers) on the street. Hadn’t seen them about since Day Whatever minus Whatever. A while ago, when there used to be lots of them on the street.

Only 42 cars in the New World carpark and three people in the queue. Seems like there might be a downturn in the curve. But of course one swallow does not a summer make.

Nor one dopey power walking scribbler a literary giant. But I enjoy it. And it keeps me sane. Mostly.