Good morning folks
I trust that you had a mighty fine weekend and that this finds you in top form.
Here is a round-up of a busy ole’ week in the madhouse capital that is Lima.
Under the spotlight/on the stage, for a man with no memory it has not been easy.
Thence follows an account of how I just managed to hold on to my job…
World of Sport!
As part of Britanico’s 80th anniversary year, native speaker teachers (of which one am I, northern branch), have had to give a one hour presentation. There was a list of topics and I ummed-&-ahhed before picking “sport”.
The company kindly gave us a lesson off (each day, so that is 90 mins x 3 weeks, ie, plenty of time). However, I was dangerously given my morning class off, so the inevitable temptation was to focus my first week on preparation for my disastrous UT69 run, then suddenly I had rehearsals (for something else, discussed next) and before I knew it the week had arrived…
I had got some ideas together, then scrapped them and then scrapped them again.
That is why I was still scribbling notes 15mins before I was “up”. Unfortunately my handwriting is at best shocking, so when I have to write fast, it’s worse and as I’d scrawled my prompts on the back of some old exam sheets, I had to re-hash these onto post-it-notes at the very last second.
I also hadn’t accounted for Powerpoint headaches. One of the simplest of tools to use, but the thing I wanted to do (show a slide on the PC one ahead of the screen) , couldn’t be done (by me), so I had 175 slides and no clear idea what was coming next, that was my problem.
Anyroad, around 30-ish people shoehorned themselves into the Library expecting a talk on football and tennis, they didn’t get what they were expecting/hoping for…
Here is a condensed version of my
“UK Sport-An insight into British games, pastimes and obsessions”
A is for
Athletics (steady start)
B is for
Black Pudding Throwing
C is for
Cricket (briefly, as I could have tried to explain the rules over the course of 4 days and somebody would have said “Ahhh, so it’s like baseball then!”)
C is also for
D is for
E is for
F is for
(F is also for football, briefly touched on this, especially Leeds United 1990-1992).
G is for
G is for
Egremont Crab Fair, Cumbria.
H is for
H is for
I is for
J is for
K is for
L is for
Lying! (World’s Biggest Liar Competition)
Over the hills from the Egremont Crab Fair, they’re a funny breed them Cumbrians!
M is for
Man Vs Horse Marathon
N is for
O is for
Open Water Swimming
P is for
Q is for
Quoits (try finding another sport beginning with Q!)
R is for
Rugby League (concentrating specifically on Willie Horne and the Challenge Cup 1954-5, I did also mention Union very briefly)
S is for
S is also for
T is for
T is also for
Tossing The Caber
U is for
(Just about to be passed by some evening strollers…)
V is for
Volleyball (coals to Newcastle springs to mind, not a lot I could teach about this one here!)
W is for
W is also for
X is for
eXtreme Sports (cheated here, it was this or X-rays/Xylophones!)
Y is for
Z is for
Then, I did a special bit on the end about Coal Carrying, why?
Because my Dad won the World Coal Carrying Championships in 1970 & 1971
(After getting up at 4am, milking 100 cows, riding his motorbike from the Lakes to Gawthorpe, deepest, darkest West Yorkshire, winning the race, riding back, then milking 100 cows again).
We’ve all got our sporting heroes, but my Dad is mine.
Thanks to ‘are kid Danny for the pics, I owe you man!
Did the talk twice (two different centres) to bemused students, hopefully it will inspire them to take up one/all of the above…
Thank you for the bananas Lourdes
Rory, Rory, tell us a story!
A wee while back I had to give a “storytelling” presentation to about 70 kids, up to the age of 11.
I had completely forgotten about the fact that I had to do a second gig in June.
After three rehearsals at the start of the month, I had completely forgotten my story, so Saturday morning saw a model example of sheer improvisation…
Improvisation can get you out of a tricky spot, but it’s not good for the bloke playing the backing music on guitar! Poor old Jorge. He did well to follow my lead.
My memory is bad, really really bad. I can still remember the Little Chef menu codes (1-145) cerca 1986, but when it comes to recent stuff I am stuffed. Something akin to Leonard out of “Memento”.
My story was about a shopkeeper called Mr Miller.
Around 70 teenagers packed into the Auditorium and probably left confused, but smiling about my complete inability to dance!
Jockeys and mannequins…
Took the Nipper out for a stroll on Saturday evening, as it is pitch black here by 6:30pm (summer and winter) the park was out, so Jockey Plaza (think of a shopping centre twice the size of the Trafford Centre) it was. It’s a tricky preposition in a pram, as there is no ramp over the Javier Prado bridge and the narrow pavement has been bottlenecked in a bottleneck by food traders (funnel-fillers at the best of times, relying on impulse purchases of stuffed potatoes and sticky cake by shouting at punters ears at point-blank range in a monotone voice!) Plus work on building a wall has narrowed the pavement to single file too…
We were looking for a pair of tights for the bairn. An easy job, surely?
First stop: Tottus- “No, no hay” (No, there are none!)
Second stop: Saga Falabella- Ages 7 upwards…
Final stop: Ripley- “s/49, pura algodon” (About £11, pure cotton, one pair!)
Will have to wait, (Lina went to the market Sunday morning, 2 pairs for £3!)
At the top of the moving escalators I told the Nipper, “3-2-1-jump!”
She thought I meant when we got off.
Round about this time, the Wee One developed a fascination with shop dummies.
She climbed up on the stand and started shaking their hands and looking confused when the mannequin didn’t talk back, she was especially curious about a boy with a super-curly mop of hair. Then she saw three baby dummies and tried to carry them out of the store, but the sheer weight stopped here. This was all followed by a tantrum, then we went home, avoiding buying chicken, “arepas” and all other types of stodge.
The rocky road to Cusco
After my “didn’t quite go to plan” UT69 race two weeks back, I took a week off as my hips felt like they had been replaced, by a blind, drunk Carpenter.
One week off stretched to two weeks after rehearsals, failing at memorising anything and talks/speeches and final week of the cycle put paid to getting out for a run.
Finally shoehorned one in on Saturday, realising (panicking) that the ANDES RACE is only two months away and 100km in the hills might require a bit of training, time to pull my finger out and stop making excuses…
13 years on!
On the 24th June 2004 I was out on a night out with some volunteer mates and met a lass called Lina. She thought I spoke Spanish until my two minute reel of words started to loop!
By chance we met again a year later and then started courting, a year to the day, which means that we’ve been together 13 years (unlucky for some, ie, my partner!)
It has been quite a ride, some high-highs, some ups and some downs. The last three years haven’t been plain sailing, mainly due to me being unable to adapt back to life in Lima (and also a bairn coming onto the scene, it’s been a steep learning curve for the three of us, but we’re getting there, I think..)
It’s good to share, or is it???
Have yersens an awesome week
Johnny, Lina & the Nipper
p.s. Next week: “Unexpected visitors!” and Torchlight Procession…