Sunday, 13 March 2011

Daud's Retirement

Daud meeting his kin at Melbourne Zoo.

When I was twenty-one, I worked on a hippie market stall in Reading selling Indian incense, bronze Hindu statues and tie-dye clothing.

I left Reading with my then partner to travel around Australia for a year. We took the toy elephant from on top of the stall, named him Daud after my boss, and gave him the new title of: Daud the Travelling Elephant.

He came with us all around Aus. He also went to Rome, the Lake District and several other places. He's been pictured at Melbourne Zoo, Ayres Rock and countless areas of interest.

But, unfortunately, Daud has become a little frayed in recent years. No longer his lustrous self.

I'm going to take him to visit my friend Martine, to get dolled-up, at some point but, for now, Daud is handing over his duties to Percy the Rabbit, who I found on my recent trip to Belgium.

Daud today, in need of TLC.

Percy Rabbit, ready to go.
The reason for the co-pilot?

I'm off on another road trip.

Someone's lending me their house on the German-Polish border for a while, to hide away and write. So, early tomorrow morning, I'm driving down to Dover and taking the afternoon ferry across to Dunkerque, from whence I'm continuing up to Ypres (also known as Leper) to chill out in a hotel for a couple of nights. I also plan to visit the Menin Gate and my great grandfather's grave, which I haven't done for over five years now.

From there I'm carrying on to Kassel in Germany, to couchsurf with a family, breaking up the nine hour journey.

On Wednesday I hope to arrive in a little village north of Görlitz.

First ever solo journey of this length so a little nervous, but ready for my next adventure.

Wish me luck everyone - I may not post again for a while. Hopefully I can pick up a USB modem from 1&1, but not sure how soon. Plus it's not much of a writer's retreat if I spend all of my time online now, is it? ;)

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