“♫ It’s a long way to Tipperary, It’s a long way to go ♫”

“What’re you singing, little fellah?”

“It’s an old marching song.”

“Why are you singing a marching song?”

“Duh! Cos I’m on a march. Obviously.”

“Looks more like you’re on a swim.”

“Okay, so this lake was in the way. I swam across it so I didn’t have to walk all the way around it.”

“Why not?”

“It’s a long way.”

“Like to Tipperary?”

“Don’t be smart!”

“Ooh, thanks. No-one’s ever accused me of being smart before.”

“I wonder why…”

“It’s cos I’m a bit slow.”

“I wasn’t asking. I was musing.”

“I’m not laughing.”

“Okay. Why don’t you sit there and see if you can work out why the water is always wetter at the weekend than during the week. I’m off. Places to go, people to see, things to do. Bye.  ♫ It’s a long way to Tipperary And the sweetest girl I know! ♫”

“STOP. Wait.”


“What if the water isn’t always wetter at the weekend than during the week?”

“Isn’t it? Okay. See if you can work out why it isn’t.”


“♫ Farewell to Piccadilly, Goodbye, Leicester Square! ♫”

“No, wait”

“Now what?”

“Where are you going, why, and can I come with you?”

“Where? America. Why? Cos I heard their president say it’s the best country on earth and he said our country is a something-or-other hole and if a bloke like that can be president there’s no limit to what a [insert you own adjectives here] person could do. Can you come too? Only if you know all the words to this song. Bye. ♫ It’s a long long way to Tipperary, But my heart’s right there. ♫”

“Won’t you at least tell me where you’ve come from?”


This was written in response to Kreative Kue 278 published on this site.

It is.


Setting this up demanded a great deal of effort and the cooperation of a number of people from various bodies and agencies while maintaining absolute secrecy.

Almost twenty years had passed since I first saw it through my spotter scope, and it has been clear to me since that day that what I was about to devote my life to following was and is a creature of great intelligence. I have been maintaining a watching brief since that first encounter.

I knew, or rather I sensed at that first meeting that not only had I seen it and recognised it for what it was, but also that it had noticed me and was somehow alerted to my interest in it. What I didn’t know on that occasion was the extent to which it had divined the nature and extent of my  interest and the purpose behind my observation of it.

It knows me. Somehow it knows me intimately. I have lost count of the number of times I have been to this spot and seen it. Hundreds, nay thousands of others have visited this place armed with telescopes, binoculars and cameras sporting the longest lenses available and yet not one of them has seen it. At one time I even started to doubt that I had seen it and yet whenever I come here alone its head rears above the surface of the lake and its gaze fixes on me – only for it to descend beneath the water as soon as I get my camera out. That’s right, I have no photographic evidence that I’ve seen it. All I know for sure is that it only appears if it knows that I arrived alone.

That said, you may be wondering why I am here with others now. Let me explain. On some of my recent visits I have noticed that a small number of people have been in the area observing an eagle’s nest across the water. This needed them to focus their equipment in the opposite direction to where I routinely see it. On some of these occasions it has briefly appeared to me, only to dive again as soon as anyone attempts to look in its direction.

I have also noted that it is aware before it surfaces that I am on the shore. It is, I therefore surmise, using a sense other than vision to detect my presence. Hence the covering. I’m guessing it will know by some means which individual is me – I am also pointing my scope in the direction I expect to find it. The other devices are pointed in a different direction, as though they are scanning the distant eyrie. I’m hoping it will spot that, but not notice that they have mirrors in their lenses that permit them to appear to be looking at 90 degrees to their actual target.

This could be it.

This could be the day of my vindication, when the world will know I’m not a deluded crank, that it does exist and that it lives in this lake.

I need it to surface now, to show itself to someone other than me, maybe even to be photographed as indisputable proof of its existence and of my sanity.

I just hope it doesn’t spot those two news helicopters hovering up there!

This was written in response to Kreative Kue 277 published on this site.

Things are not always as they seem

Picture21001 (5a)

“What happened to that man’s leg, Dad?”

“Nothing, Son. It’s a trick of the light.”

“What, like a rainbow?”

“Not exactly, but something like.”

“What’s that mean?”

“Let me explain—”

“No. Please don’t.”

“Why not?”

“Coz when you explain things it takes ages and I end up more confused than I was to start with.”

“You need to learn things, though. Okay. Tell you what. Have you heard of a mirage?”

“He hasn’t got any arms, either. How can he swim?”

“I’ve told you; it’s a trick of the light, an optical illusion. Now, what about mirages. Have you heard of them?”

“Course I have. It’s a French fighter jet. I’ve got a model one hanging in my room. You helped me make it.”

“Yes, you have. But the word originally means when you see something that isn’t there because the heat bends light rays so distant objects appear in the wrong place.”

“Sorry. I nearly fell asleep then. Is that what happened to Mummy after Uncle Jim and Aunty Mary came around last Saturday? You said she was seeing things when she asked what you were doing in the garden with Aunty Mary.”

“What do you know about that? You were asleep.”

“Wasn’t so. The back garden security light woke me up. What was that you were doing with Aunty Mary, anyway?”

“Stop changing the subject. We were talking about mirages and optical illusions.”

“Yeah. I’ve worked out what they are, Dad.”

“You have?”

“Yeah. They’re lies that grown-ups tell kids so they don’t find out the truth.”

“No, that’s not right. It’s like I said—”

“No good, Dad. I’m going indoors to google opticle allusion to be sure.”

This was written in response to Kreative Kue 276 published on this site.