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December 15 , 2009

Aphrodite's Ore



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Who’s in the Shack(?)

There are public houses in Cumbria which are meeting places for farmers and it is in these places where I heard tell of the Lake District legends; I knew the farmers. It was in that setting that after last orders one night Roger told me the story of the mystery shack, which I thought really good. This last one in the first set of Quick Flash…

Millom in Cumbria, for a lot of years, was a lovely place. It was even lovelier in a dirty sort of way because it had the good fortune to be sat atop a field of iron ore which attracted industry i.e. Hodbarrow mines. This good fortune naturally led to Millom town, which sported a rough hotel bar with women and a tin bath, a ceramic shaving bowl, a King called Arthur and high plain drifters like Sharpo ... that’s how mines work most of the time.
Millom though had a mine ‘bonus’; they mined Aphrodite’s Ore.
But, can you have that much good fortune without someone throwing a spanner in the works just to keep things interesting? In Millom’s case the spanner thrower was none less than God. God didn’t actually mean to do it, but what’s done is done and what was done was done. God can use all the excuses God ever invented for sky blue thinking management teams everywhere, but when you actually did it, excuses are seven letters in an annoying syntax.
Adopt, Adapt, Improve was the motto of the Millom and District Round Table years ago (I was in it) ... but, when you adapt to something, sometimes there is no need to improve it, simply because you just get used to it. You can get used to anything except grit in your eye, a stone in your shoe, or a scared claustrophobic rat in your knickers as in those young Irish dancers who tend to, through championship craving loving parents, absorb far too much caffeine. If they won’t drink the mania producing caffeine, the rat comes into play; parents can be so cruel to rats. Trillionaire Michael Flatley quite likes rats, and caffeine.
So Millom people got used to the spanner which had The Mechanism of Heaven Maintenance Team written on it.
As MiIlom was then plodding along, bored, in need of a line or two, something else happened in the field of humiliation and for a while, the s**t hit the fan. So, a town once rich in Aphrodite’s Ore manages to become a hopefully entertaining eBook for you the ‘valuable as gold’, amusement seeking reader.
Fascinating and fantastic? How many towns can you say that about?
Mind you, it takes a very aware ex-resident who few in the town like any more, to produce the Heaven inspired, true, cynical, hurtful ‘bullshit’.

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