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My father and his twenty five penises

Tom Winnifrith Wednesday 29 June 2016

 

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Some people are just good at languages. The Mrs speaks perfect English (for a Northerner), very good Swedish and very acceptable Greek. Some of us are bad at languages. Other than English I speak poor French and a smattering of Greek, Latin and German - all poorly. And some of us are bad at languages but think we are rather better than bad. I think of my father.

For I am sitting in Miranda's taverna in Kambos enjoying a lunch of chicken and peas before returning to the Greek Hovel for some frigana slashing. The roast chicken is not bad, the peas are amazing. And I laugh as I think of my father and the chicken.

Many years ago, as he travelled around rural Greece, some villagers asked him what animals he kept. Since my parents were into self sufficiency there was a good choice and my father announced loudly that he owned twenty five chickens. There was a stunned silence as he had plucked the wrong word from the ether. The assembled crowd looked at him in a strange way. Did he really have 25 penises? Someone explained.

Perhaps my father shoukd have remembered his French oral exam aged 13. He was asked "quelle profession a ton pere?" Unable to remember the word for civil servant, he replied "mon pere est mort" and looked sad. Straight A. Nailed it.

About Tom Winnifrith
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Tom Winnifrith is the editor of TomWinnifrith.com. When he is not harvesting olives in Greece, he is (planning to) raise goats in Wales.
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