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3 June 2011 / leggypeggy

Poor John not doing so poorly

No doubt there is the usual outpouring of concern regarding the well-being of Poor John. Oh, pleeeze!

We aren’t quite into week three of our travels and so far he has read The Black Sea by Neil Ascherson, Another Kind of Traitor by John LeCarré, The Call of the Wild by Jack London and a few cheap suspense novels for which he can’t remember the titles, two other detective novels on his Kobo (electronic reader), a couple of PG Wodehouse books (also on the Kobo), and The Man Who Smiled by Henning Mankell. He reported that last one with his own sly grin.

It used to be that I delayed operations because I had to have a quick cigarette, but now that I have stopped smoking, we wait for Poor John to finish a chapter.

Recently the book supply was getting worryingly low, so we made several forays into bookstores that carry English titles. Books are cheap here compared to Australia, and we’ve bought seven or eight titles, or maybe it’s 10 or 12?! I’ve selected a few, but have so far resisted buying yet another cookbook. I was briefly tempted by Hunde Cookies (Dog Cookies) by Jeff Simpson, but remembered that our dogs will eat anything. Watch for a ‘Those Damn Dogs’ entry soon.

Poor John and the cask at Heidelberg Schloss.

John using the giant cask as a back-scratcher.

Anyway, for those of you who need to see evidence of Poor John’s condition, he is pictured here in the cellar of the Heidelberg Schloss (castle). Behind him is a gigantic cask. Supposedly it can hold 228,000 litres of what I can only assume must be some pretty terrible wine. In the old days, the locals could use a tap to siphon off a daily jug of wine. Poor John appears to be standing innocently in front of the cask, but don’t be fooled for a moment. He was actually surreptitiously scratching his back against it. He does that at home too, but against the wall between the kitchen and family room.

As an aside, if you click on the small pic, you will get a larger version that let’s you see just how much dust has collected on that cask.


Leave a Comment
  1. Louise M Oliver / Jun 4 2011 12:08 pm

    So how is Poor John managing to do so much reading when you’re so busy? I admire his commitment and can’t wait to get an iPad of my own but stil…And Peggy, honestly, you don’t need a cookbook to read on your travels. You would need to buy the hardcopy and post it to me to mind until you return. That way I could assess the recipes, try some of them out and make sure that nothing happened to the book. And, after all, it isn’t as if you’re going to have many opportunities for haute cuisine. I will try to moderate my outpourings of sympathy for Poor John now that I know he has an electronic reader.

    Best wishes


  2. leggypeggy / Jun 4 2011 3:48 pm

    Louise — I couldn’t send you the Hunde cookies book! You dont have a hunde. 🙂


  3. Sy Seltzer / Jun 8 2011 9:56 am


    There are thousands of free electronic books on the internet……. easier to upload and less books to buy and carry around… Maybe John is not into computers…. and iPads.

    Aside- I run an Irish Terrier Yahoo Message Board and own a pure breed Irish Terrier. Jack London has written two books that feature an Irish Terriers… and they are collectors books for IT breed enthusiasts. They also are free on E-book the internet.



  4. leggypeggy / Jun 8 2011 2:58 pm

    Thanks Sy. Poor John is a keen purchaser of e-books. He also downloads plenty of free ones. We have a running joke in the family about how much he reads.


  5. Adina Ciocalau / Jun 8 2011 4:35 pm

    When I saw the title with Poor John in it ,I instantly thought of him sky diving or something to do up in the sky! That’s when I saw the first time his name. So I stand by what you said “not doing so poorly”. Enjoy the rest of the trip!


  6. leggypeggy / Jun 8 2011 7:09 pm

    Be patient Adina — I’m sure I can come up with something that will make everyone sympathise with Poor John. For now he is having a great time. Although he does have to look after the heavier baggage.


  7. leggypeggy / Jun 8 2011 7:20 pm

    You’ve got it, but don’t tell him.


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