I do not think we will fly to Australia tonight… There is a further delay and from my hiding place under a desk I have heard them say that the plane will almost certainly be cancelled. How irritating! But it does give me space to give you a potted history of what happened next. But it will be brief for I must try to sleep for an hour or so.
I drove around Cape Town, without my ostrich head on as I believed that anyone chasing me would be on the lookout for an ostrich. The van needed a clean but I was pleased to find a pair of dark glasses on the dashboard. I quickly slipped them on, along with a rather greasy green cap which sat among some old sandwich wrappers and crisp bags. It was unpleasant but I hoped this and the glasses would prevent all but the most observant from seeing me. I delighted to discover a Sat Nav which I programmed to guide me to the airport. There was even half a pack of jelly sweets in that van. Marvellous. Beard and Bald, if you read this, your van is safe and parked on Munich Road near the corner with Mobile Road.
It was all going so well, until I switched on the radio. The tunes were really quite pleasant (I like that Ladysmith Black Mambazo) but then came a news bulletin.
“A white transit van belonging to Animal Welfare has been stolen from the Welfare charity’s city headquarters and has been spotted heading east on the N2, Settlers Way, near Mowbray Golf Club.”
There was so much wrong with that statement. Welfare for a start. If Beard and Bald belong to a charity that is helping to protect animals, I will eat my stilts. And headquarters? Nasty concrete block in desolate part of town. But what was right was the fact that a white transit van had been stolen and was on the N2, Settlers Way. Time for another plan.
Fortunately I had already come up with another plan. I turned off the main road and wound through the side streets, though the Sat Nav did not like this and started to shout at me. I am afraid I shouted back once or twice but my excuse was that I was a little worried. I turned into a yard, parked, carefully unstrapped myself, unlocked the door and leapt out. I was in warehouse land again and from what I could tell following my dispute with the Sat Nav, I was near the airport.
Warehouses have lots of lovely places to hide. And hide I did, not coming out until the sound of nearby police sirens had died down and until I had dropped my stilts and many of my borrowed feathers. I rearranged the remaining feathers. Yes, time for a new disguise. At this point, may I refer you to a previous entry (March 12, Master of Disguise)
My disguise as a turkey (or ‘dokey’ as I like to call it) was effective. Very effective. Almost too effective. I was pottering along looking for a new route to the airport when I bumped into a crowd of young men and women. I think they must have been celebrating early for Easter. And sometimes people like to eat turkey for Easter. The youngsters were happy to point this out with words such as:
“You haven’t got your turkey yet, have you Nathan?”
“Yum! Free range turkey!”
How I missed my long ostrich legs for speed, but how I loved my short stature which meant I could hide behind containers and small bushes. I crept forward, dodging the men and women who seemed a little unsteady on their feet, and squeezed between an old bin and a shed. Here I stayed until the youngsters tired of their game and I felt that it was safe to go out. I wished I had had a map or had been able to ask the way. It would be a long night.
That was a few days ago. I understand my plane has been rescheduled to around 10am so I shall try to have a little sleep ready for the great journey to the end of the earth – or Tasmania. Thylacine, here I come!