Having recently moved to Port Elizabeth from Clarens in the Eastern Free State one of the ways that I have tried to get to know Port Elizabeth is by learning its history and this journey of discovery from a newcomer is what I will hopefully be imparting via the Blog. In a Blog a few weeks back I attended a service at the gravesite of a james Dalton but I was not aware that there were two Victoria Cross winners are buried in the City. Those being James Dalton at Russell road RC cemetery at the bottom of Russell road and James Craig at St Mary’s cemetery.

James Langley Dalton: Born December 1832 London. Died 8 January 1887 Port Elizabeth: (22-23 January 1879) – before the attack by the Undi Regiment at Rorkes Drift he argued that the party should fortify te post and not retreat to Helpmekaar. When this was agreed he set about superintending the erection of barricades. When the attack began he was at the corner of the hospital he later rushed forward and shot a Zulu as he was about to assegai one of the soldiers, saving his life.

James Craig: Born 10 September 1824 Perth Scotland. Died 18 March 1861 Port Elizabeth: (6 September 1855) – At Sebastopol during the Crimea war he volunteered to go out under heavy fire to look for Captain Buckley, supposed at the time to be only wounded. With the help of a drummer he brought in the dead body of that officer. He was badly wounded in the course of this action

Port Elizabeth has so much to offer those who are interested in the past and I have recently discovered Richmond Hill, “its awesome” and from the renovations and renewal going on in the area I am not the only one who thinks so. I cannot wait to explore and learn its history.

Last week told you about the Donkey carts, managed to get a photo of 1 to show you. As well as a couple of vehicles that had seen action on the roads.

Last Friday some lucky sod won 91 000 000 on Powerball (it wasn’t me because if it was a) I would hire wilbur Smit to do the Blog and it would be re-named The Diaries of a Stinking rich Village Idiot that has just purchased his own village) can you imagine winning that amount of money………..how it would change your life and if you where generous the lives of untold others. I just hope that the person who has won it is someone hat either deserves it or needs it /…………newsflash winners are a poor deaf family that have now had to be moved to another location due to the fact their identities were released in the newspapers (not clever) they had every Tom Dick and Hobo knocking on the door………….Another newsflash seems they are not the winners and its someone else. “Only in Africa” perhaps they can share the R like they did in IDOLS 2009?

A few months back half of the world population was going to die from SARS with countries spending Billions on injections, masks etc………..what happened to SARS? did it take a break over Xmas, was the disease a figment of the Pharmaceutical companies imaginations so they could sell millions of dollars worth of injections and masks so as to ensure over the recession they still made R..............but wait apparently Swine flu is coming to watch the SWC in June apparently it also likes ‘the beautiful game” seems there is concern that if the tourists don’t get mugged and stabbed at the SWC then they may be ambushed by SARS. We know business owners in SA will be ambushed by S.A.R.S after the world cup who will want here share of the obscene profits they have made from locals and tourists alike. (Perhaps I need to make T shirts and sell to locals that say “I’m a local so don’t rip me off , I will probably sell them to tourist as well at double the price.) Also seems that FIFA now want to charge any establishment that will be selling alcohol and showing World Cup games at the same time a small licence fee of R50 000 (yes that’s right Fifty thousand Sef African Raant) Good luck Mr. Blatter at getting Mr Sixpence Shabalala who owns the AK47 Shebeen to pay………………now that would be worth watching.

Bought a scooter this week, as need extra transport so we had a look at what was out there and at what price……..came home with this beauty I’ve dubbed it the Hardly Davidson and Tania the “Marilyn Monroe”.

I had to share this with you

As we get older we sometimes begin to doubt our ability to "make a difference" in the world.

It is at these times that our hopes are boosted by the remarkable achievements of other "seniors" who have found the courage to take on challenges that would make many of us wither. Harold S of Victoria, Australia, is such a person.

"I've often been asked", says Harold, 'What do you older folks do, now that you're retired'?

"Well ... I'm fortunate to have a chemical engineering background," he replies, "and one of the things I enjoy most is converting beer, wine, scotch, champagne and Baileys Irish Cream into urine."

“House in Clarens for sale! Includes FREE friends and neighbours, FREE view of Mt Horeb, FREE sunsets and FREE snowy winters! Any takers”? just call Me the Village idiot 071 599 4013 . Just thought I would throw that in) House sale in Clarens went south again so now looking for a buyer so we can purchase the house in PE…………………..Tell your friends

While there was crime in Clarens (we even had a couple of murders over the years) and residents did have accidents the last week has brought home that while we do live in a city that thinks it’s a village “it’s a dangerous place” Last Sunday I saw a guy getting stabbed in the neck in New Brighton while on a advert shoot. In the paper this week a young student was stabbed to death in her dorm on the university campus in PE. Now I don’t know about you but if I go to a braai on the beach you expect to find shells , bits of wood etc that have washed up on shore, for one family from Mphumalanga (Eastern Transvaal) however they found a naked body of a lady who had been raped and beaten……..now that’s not something you don’t see everyday.

Talking about crime i see that some unsensative person defaced a sign to make it look like a suicide bomber was in fact in the area. i just think its so Wrong................!

Driving past a church the other day Gabby asked me why churches have steeples and not having the answer (yes even the winner of the Weakest Link can have his off days) I decided to look it up. There is not one specific answer here are a couple of ideas.

Steeples, the pointed roofs of churches, have been included in church buildings since the conversion of Constantine and his proclamation making Christianity the official religion of his state. The origins of steeples, however, have been traced back to several different traditions

Scholar Ruth Andersson notes that when Christianity was gaining strength in its early years, priests and practitioners often adopted local traditions and religious symbols and beliefs as a way to convert non-Christians. "Pagan symbols abound within the church," says Andersson. "The steeple probably has its origins in the phallic obelisks or pillars of pagan practice. Particularly in the British Isles," she continues, "phallic imagery---as well as imagery of women represented by large vaginas---is commonplace, both in pagan sites and in churches. Lots of people never notice!"

In the Middle Ages, steeples were built as high as possible not only to point to heaven but also to protect worshipers from the evil spirits many Christians believed plagued church buildings. Steep roofs, sharp steeples and gargoyles---as hideous and as scary looking as possible---were added to churches in great numbers by parishioners hoping to drive away evil creatures.

During the Middle Ages, steeples stopped being merely decorative reminders of pagan pasts and became functional as the housing for church bells. By the 15th century, most churches had steeples with bells, which were rung on the hour and to announce religious ceremonies and holidays. The steeple traveled with settlers to America. There, too, the steeple housed bells and was one of the few decorations on church buildings not removed for the sake of plainness in early American religious life.

Misunderstandings About Steeple Origins
Many Christians understand the origins of the symbolism of the church and how it developed out of other, older religions, but a large number does recognize the historical fact behind such symbolism. Such practitioners claim the steeple was invented in the Middle Ages to repel Viking attacks in the British Isles; Abbe Suger, who transformed Saint-Denis in Paris, was told to build steeples by a holy messenger; or steeples exist for the purpose of raising a cross higher than any other building in a city or town. None of these stories are accurate, according to historian Sarah Crewe.

This week spent 3days at VW Uitenhage with a gent called Keith who is sort of my health and safety mentor at the moment…………… (this is all part of a cunning plan to get a job in this field.) Have not walked so much in ages and is really fascinating to be at such a large company, to se the assembly line in action is “WOW” I am learning so much and I am there for another 5 days next week..

Watched the new version of the movie Fame this week and have to say the original was by far better, this was actually boring and would not spur me on to want to become a performing artist.

This here photo taken by Mark the Meatbomb Horton was taken a while back in the village of Clarens and is a classic “Kodak moment”

Friday was a pretty good day, had a good day in Uitenhage and that night was the Pro 20 with the warriors taking on Cape Cobras as usual when Ryan goes to watch them play they lose, in fact that’s why they seem to play most of their home games in East London , so Ryan cant get there. It’s a bit like the Sharks asking Jeanelle not to watch their games at Friends because they seem to lose and that has Jeanelle in tears and really upsets her evening, talking about Jeanelle had a great SKYPE session on Thursday afternoon and caught up on lots of Village news (Dankie Skat) for those Poms reading this “thanks treasure”. On Friday the Sharks LOST against the Cheetahs.

So you may have read that the Village Idiot has been donning his “sea pent” to boogie board, snorkel and body surf………….Great fun and I am jealouse you say well look at the photo of this fish that was taken a day after I had been in the same ocean (albeit a few miles away) Not sure what the scientific name is but I call it a D.I.Y shark, commonly known as a Hammerhead.

This sage advice was given to me by a caring person who knows that I am looking for work and knows that I am getting a little frustrated: “When things don’t go right…………….Go Left” ………………………………”WTF”

Be good and have a great week


The Village Idiot (who used to live in Clarens but now lives in PE, “nee ek staan maar net hiersor”)

PS: I know you are missing me as i have seen a couple of cars in PE that have stickers with "Your village called and they want there idiot back" thanks guys that is just so touching.

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