Saturday, October 23, 2004

The Reverend and the Longdrop

A young vicar started working in a rural community, assisting the older cleric who was close to retirement. He was still fresh on the job when he took an urgent call from one of the farms in the parish. According to the hysterical person on the other end of the line, some sort of calamity had befallen the old farmer, and he had to come without delay.

Expecting the worst and fully prepared to deliver the last rites, he arrived at the farm. As he stopped in front of the house, the farmer’s wife was waiting for him. A bit calmer now, she explained to him that something terrible had happened to her husband. The reason why she called him, instead of the older minister, was because the farmer did not want anyone he was acquainted with to be aware of what had transpired.

As they were entering the house, she told him that the old man was real conservative and did not see the need for a toilet inside the house. They were still using an outhouse. But termites must have been working the wood, because this time, when he sat down the seat broke and he fell onto the hole.

“You know, vicar, it’s a longdrop* and very deep, and we had struggled for hours to get him out from there. Now he is in a very bad mood, ten times worse than usual.”

Inside the house the old lady showed him the way to the master bedroom. A little unnerved he walked down the long and dark hallway, greeting the man coming towards him, when he realized that he was seeing his own reflection in a mirror. With an embarrassed smile he knocked on the bedroom door.

“Come in”, a loud voice boomed and the vicar bravely entered. On the bed was something out of a hieroglyph, wrapped from head to toes in bandages. Two smoldering eyes stared from the one end of the apparition, and a strong smell of perfume permeated the room.

“Good day, sir”, the vicar said, “how are you?”

“Don’t ask me how I am. You’re not the doctor”, came the brash reply. “Do your job so that the old lady can have some peace!”

With hands slightly shaking, the vicar decided to read a psalm, and he opened his bible in that region. It fell open at Psalm 88, and without thinking he started to read. At first it went well, but then with dismay he heard his own voice recite the seventh verse: “I'm battered senseless by your rage, relentlessly pounded by your anger...”

In shock, he jumped to the next verse, “You have made me repulsive to my friends, and you have sent them all away.”

Now horrified, but unable to stop in time, “I am stuck and cannot escape…”

The next moment the mummy had enough, and started speaking Egyptian. Then it thundered, “Out! You heard me, GET OUT!!”

“And tell my wife I am in no mood for apprentices!”

Once outside, the old lady wanted to know what had happened.

“Let’s just say”, the vicar replied, “I took a longer drop than your husband.”

Based upon the original story
as told by L.W. (Ollie) Olwagen

* Longdrop: Afrikaans slang term describing a derelict borehole being used as a cesspit.

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