Mondays’ Column – Gladstone Gold!

Recently I was ambling through the bush behind the family terriers, Dumbdog and Littledog, when I happened to spy an abandoned car in the distant scrub.  As we approached the vehicle, a bloke leaped out of a nearby hole in the ground brandishing a pick and shovel.  Dumbdog immediately feigned a seizure, while Littledog dived behind my ankles, barking wildly and wetting herself at the same time.  

Once we all got over our mutual shock, I got to talking with the bloke and learned that he was fossicking for gold.  Gold!  Apparently we were standing on an old gold field which was still yielding some small finds.  It took all my self control not to drop to the ground and start grubbing about for those elusive yellow rocks. 

Instead, I whipped back home and told my mate ‘No Worries’ Neville what I’d learned.  His eyes lit up, “No worries,” he said, “I’ve got a metal detector, all we have to do is tune it in, and we’re away.”  Nev’s wife laughed as he dragged his rusty old detector out of the shed, “Off to the beach again are you Long John?” she sniggered.  Nev pointedly ignored her.    

Our first discovery was finding that my wife had foolishly left her wedding ring on the kitchen sink, so I tossed it into one of the weed beds in the backyard and Nev tried locating it. 

One frantic hour later I found it by stepping on it.  Further testing was bought to a halt by Long Suffering Wife who had been watching us from the house with deepening suspicion.  The ring was immediately confiscated and Nev and I sought refuge in the bush where we spent the rest of the day scouring a piece of ground the size of Tasmania.  By nightfall we had unearthed one hubcap, two rusty bolts, and a bullet riddled aerosol can. 

Our enthusiasm waned over the following weeks as ‘The Mother Lode’ managed to elude us, but our wives’ appreciated the peace and quiet, and the dogs got plenty of exercise, so it wasn’t a complete waste of time. 

We recovered from our bout of gold fever with minimal scarring, and I returned to work after convincing the boss that my abusive resignation letter was actually an appalling practical joke.  Nev tossed his metal detector back into the shed, and returned to working on a computer programme which picks winning Lotto numbers.  He’s looking for investors to get in on the ground floor if anyone is interested?

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