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Monday, May 28, 2007

...and now the incriminating evidence.

Don't say I didn't tell you so!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

I promise that I will never criticise any woman for the time it takes to get ready ever again (well for a week or two at least!) What a palaver – Make-Up, Bra straps, Fish nets. It is a terribly difficult thing; being a woman. I managed to get the dress on without too much difficulty; the fish net tights were harder, as for the make-up, well that is a real black art. I relied on Helen to smear on the different applications and when she had finished I looked like an evil Danny La Rue. I didn’t exactly sashay into the bar; more like clumped my way around the tables armed with raffle tickets. It was quite a lonely existence until the door opened and there in full girlie regalia stood the T brothers, VP and BK. My God It was scary! They looked so practiced. I referred to the dark underbelly of Prawle in a previous posting and boy, did it rear its tranny head last night. Thank you boys, for your stand of sisterly solidarity. Later Mr. K. arrived I was primed and ready to heavily fine him for his inevitable laughter and insults, but no! He stayed quiet and polite – he was either feeling unwell or determined not to have to put his hands in his pockets. Furthermore, he was dressed as a man, the nerve of the old curmudgeon! I jest; Mr. K. not only dug deep, but played his part rather well as the arbiter of taste and decorum in letting me know in no uncertain terms, that I was without a doubt the ugliest bird he had ever had the misfortune to clap eyes on. He was ably assisted by his partner in crime Mr. B. They passed comment on the attire of their fellow drinkers and made it clear that they would never cross dress – Oh the wonders of Photoshop… Watch this space.

I will publish genuine photos of my cross dressing experience as soon as I have paid the blackmail fee, but in the meantime I would like to thank everyone who made last night so much fun. We raised £150.00 for the First Responders appeal, so all in all it was a worthwhile experience being Doris for the night.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Not long now...

Less than 24 hours to go until I suspend my masculinity and become the old tart behind the bar. I'm not too sure about the make up bit! I will be reliant on Helen for that stuff. I've got some raffle prizes and I am determined to raise a reasonable amount to add to the first responders coffers. I need all the support I can get, with the abuse I will no doubt receive from the usual suspects I fear that this girl may be less than composed by the end of the night.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Never let the facts get in the way of a true story.

I found the following on google regarding our recent fame and notoriety here in the village. I was impressed by the obvious high standard of research and accuracy. Also the fact, that if you read UPI's blurb at the beginning we are considered to be a subject of critical information - Go figure!

Welcome to UPI
Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide. UPI is a global operation headquartered in Washington, DC with offices in Beirut, Hong Kong, London, Santiago, Seoul and Tokyo.

English village to build 'phone throne'
LONDON, May 14 (UPI) -- The Chivelstone Parish is shelling out about $200 to build a throne for visitors to stand on to get a cell phone signal in England's East Prawle Village.
Up until now, mobile phone users in the remote village have literally had to stand on an old wooden bridge to get enough signal to make a call, The Daily Mail reported Monday.
Because the parish has been receiving complaints that the bench, which is across from the public bathrooms, is getting damaged, they have decided to build a special "phone throne" for villagers to and visitors to make mobile telephone calls.
"Opposite the village green and just a few yards down from the public toilets is a wooden bench and villagers have found that if they climb onto it and face in the right direction they can make a call," said one fed-up villager.
"Unfortunately so many of them have been doing it that the bench has been getting damaged," he added.
East Prawle has a population of less than 200, two pubs, a shop and a park.

Things are becoming clearer.

Yes that's me in the dress! Afraid to publish you ask Mr. Anonymous? I will not succomb to your blackmail threats. Just wait until friday night when I serve you your pint I'll really look the part then. I read these comments you leave with great interest. I think people will see that below the quaint rose coloured veneer of Prawle lies a dark underbelly of people scheming to besmirch my good name. What's wrong with a little cross dressing? Furthermore, J. Edgard Hoover (former head of the FBI) was known to wear skirts, what is stranger is the fact that he disappeared off the scene around the time a certain Mr K. arrived on these shores - now I'm not suggesting anything improper should he feel the need to contact his libel lawyers, merely an observation.
I will be fining anyone who dares take my good name in vein. I think the First responders will do very well this weekend. Dig deep in those pockets Statler and Waldorf, for I shall be passing the collection bucket around soon.
By the way, I do look rather fetching in that little number, don't I?

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Injured but undeterred,

I have renewed my aquaintence with muscles I no longer knew I had. I have a lump on my hand the size of a golf ball and my batting performance was poor at best, but I took two wickets!!!

I had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon as a player in the East Prawle Cricket team. I am about to go to bed now, but I will tell you more soon. We didn't win, but we came a close second.

Oh dear - What have I done now?

As a publican I know only too well the effects that excess alcohol can have on someone. As I alluded to yesterday I have suffered those self same effects - my problem being amnesia. I cannot remember anything I said and this came home to me with a vengeance yesterday lunchtime. I was busy nursing my well earned hangover, a direct result of the Euchre Team Dinner that Helen and I were kindly invited to on Friday evening. Mr K. DHS, MR B. and another Mr B came into the pub for a pie and a pint. They had all been hard at work preparing the village cricket pitch for today's match against Slapton. Mr K. revelled in my apparent discomfort and more so when he pointed out that I would be playing cricket for the team today. I think my expression must have said a lot because I knew nothing of this although I had apparently agreed to it on Friday evening. I tried the old "I have no whites" ploy, but DHS assured me that he would provide. I then remembered that this would leave Helen on her own in the pub on a busy Sunday lunchtime. Mr K. asked her in his nicest manner if she would mind and I confidently predicted a very big YES SHE DOES MIND. Alas no, she simply smiled and said what a nice idea it would be. So now the time is drawing near and I am panicking that I may single handedly be responsible for the worst defeat in East Prawle Cricket history. I haven't bowled an over for nearly thirty years...

I will let you know what happened later.

Oh! One more thing, Mr K. I feel the barring coming on...

Saturday, May 19, 2007


I have a hangover the size of a house. They made me do it, whatever it was! I can't really remember, but I think it was fun.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

verb [T]
to wish that you had something that another person has:
It’s easy to think that Polyanna is writing this blog, every entry bubbles along detailing the delights of life in the village pub, but sometimes things aren’t always sweetness and light. I think I should clarify my position here. The village is as wonderful as I describe, the people (with very few exceptions) are a delight to serve and the way of life is to die for. I am though, prone to feel fed up on occasion. I suppose the main reason is the separation from my family – yes I know everyone said so, and yes I thought I could manage it, but I am not too proud to admit that I hate it. My son; Max has just been told that he will have to wear glasses for the rest of his life. I wanted to be with him to help him understand. Isn’t that what fathers are for? Fortunately he is very pleased with himself and thinks it is a great thing. Oh to be four again!

Lunch times are a funny affair here. On a Monday the Pig’s Nose is shut and we get a lot of walkers in for bar meals. The rest of the week tends to be very quiet. I know this will change with the onset of summer and the visitors it brings to the village, but it can be soul destroying at times standing behind the bar of an empty pub.

An amusing thing has happened this week here in Prawle. At a meeting of the parish council, someone commented on the lack of a mobile telephone signal in the village. It was said that campers often stand on the village benches to get a signal and muddy the seats. The council suggested spending money on a two foot tall concrete plinth for people to stand on instead. A reporter happened to be at the meeting and obviously short of breaking international news they ran with this staggering piece of information. We have now had BBC film crews here, Radio Five Live interviewed council members, our district councillor was even contacted by Radio Ulster – maybe Martin McGuinness and Ian Paisley feel this is an issue to be discussed by the assembly at Stormont? Now for the rub – I feel left out. All the activity centred on the village green, the Pig’s Nose was mentioned throughout, but the poor old Provi’ missed out. I even told one radio reporter that there was another pub in the village and that amazingly it was also possible to get a signal in my beer garden, but no! The Provi wasn’t deemed a location worthy of international recognition…

So you see, envy can strike us all.

Oh! I forgot to mention – I also barred someone from the pub, but that's another story...

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Givenchy or Chanel?

I am not best pleased, but I have to announce that I will be in drag on Friday 25th May (Evening). This is down to my failure to wear a suit on Good Friday. I am already receiving suggestions as to what I should wear that evening and if anyone out there has a dress in fat bloke size, please contact me ASAP.

I am going to charge 50 pence to everyone who laughs at me and this will go to the First Responders Appeal. This is an ongoing collection that will be used to train a local group of volunteers in the use of life saving equipment. The idea is that immediate help will be available until the emergency services arrive. Should anyone laugh excessively the amount will increase by a commensurate amount.

The bank holiday weekend was very busy for food, but less so for drinking. I did have the pleasure of being host to a stag party who whilst drinking vast quantities did behave impeccably. They turned up on Saturday with a request to book a table for 10 that same evening. They arrived at opening time and drank and drank and drank and… They later ordered their meals and the chap who was due to jump the broomstick decided to sit in the easy chair by the log fire while waiting for his food. I guess the combination of large volumes of Dartmoor IPA, a warm log fire (and did I mention large quantities of ale?) had a soporific effect and he slumped into a peaceful sleep. His comrades obviously felt he needed the rest because when they had finished eating – some two hours later, they woke him and thanked him for his meal that they had shared between them!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

A little village info

I haven’t really said too much about the locality I find myself in. The village of East Prawle is in an area known as the South Hams. The name comes from the old English word “Hamme”, meaning sheltered place and whilst this village is far from sheltered it does enjoy a long summer and mild winters. The main towns in this area are Kingsbridge, Totnes, Dartmouth, Salcombe, Modbury and Ivybridge. I used to holiday here when I was younger and would enjoy the expanse of sand at Bantham or just strolling around Salcombe or Dartmouth looking at the boats. As I grew older I would visit the area with my own family and have taken great pleasure visiting places with my children that I first saw myself as a youngster. There is a sad inevitability about holidays though; you always have to go home, and our journeys back always seemed to be depressing affairs. I often said to Helen that on a Sunday evening we should have been travelling south on the A38, not North. I wanted to be returning to the South Hams after visiting relatives in the Midlands not leaving Devon and going back to Northampton. Now I have that luxury. I don’t get out as much as I would like to because the pub really is a full time affair, but when I do venture out I enjoy the coastal paths and hidden beaches around here. Charlie is now walking further and I am looking forward to really long walks with him.

Whilst Salcombe claims to be Devon’s southernmost town East Prawle is Devon’s southernmost village. It looks down across valleys and out to sea. Farming is the major industry in the area and some of the farms are run by families who have been here for generations. A lot of the holiday houses and second homes enjoy spectacular sea views and as such attract a large number of visitors throughout the year. Many people visit every year and some of them have become locals in their own right some even playing in the village cricket teams.

There is a very strong sense of community here in Prawle. The Parish Council serves its electorate well and various other village committees and groups do a lot for the well being and entertainment of all residents. As I write this entry there is an election on for the District & Parish Councils, it is being strongly fought with one of the main contenders being a villager and sometime drinker at the pub, I use the term Drinker loosely as he is the epitome of probity and rectitude!. The village, whilst not high in population has two pubs; there is first and foremost the Provi’ (I would say that wouldn’t I?) but on the green is the Pig’s Nose. This pub is run by Peter and Lesley Webber and is famous for its music nights.

Later this month the Prawle Fair will take place. This is a wonderfully traditional English country fair with swing boats, tombola’s, plate smashing and even guinea pig races. We are going to provide Chilli Con Carne to the visitors and all proceeds will go to the causes supported by the fair committee. I am really hoping that the weather will be kind and that lots of people come and join in the fun. All of the villagers contribute in some way shape or form and at the end of the day there will be a children’s tug-of-war with the two teams representing the two village pubs. Come on the Provi’!