01 Feb THE LONGEST STORY
There we were, not by choice but by order of the Governor and enforced by the occupation army.
It seemed a lifetime ago that Israel was a free nation, then suddenly in marched the Romans and took over without a bye your leave or excuse me. I ask you what a liberty.
Any way back to what I was saying there we were in Bethlehem, of all places, ordered there because that was where I was born. I had a nice little carpentering business which I should have been working at back home, bloomin Romans. The missus was up the duff and all we had was a donkey, Cor blimey then it started snowing we decided we’d better find a hotel and quick!
Knock knock “Who’s there” the innkeeper yelled from behind the locked door.
“Weary travellers from Nazereth looking for a room”
“We’re full up so sod off”
“But my wife is up the duff,” I pleaded
“That’s got nothing to do with me.”
Subsequently it turned out that it had nothing to do with me either!
We moved on up the road and tried again and again, eventually one Innkeeper said we could doss down in the stable but the animals had priority because of the cold weather.
Well – crowded out with donkeys, cows and pigs we crouched down in the corner. Blow me the misses only goes and has the baby, nowhere else to put him so in the manger he went, the animals carried on eating the hay around him. Then of course we couldn’t go anywhere until they were both fit enough to travel so we were stuck there for a few days. Word soon got about that we had a new baby and people kept turning up with presents. Some shepherds brought a lamb, as if there weren’t enough animals there already.
Three wise chaps arrived with gifts for some prince or something, they couldn’t have been that clever, I mean a prince in a stable. They brought Gold, Frankinsense and Myrrh. Not our kind of stuff really but the gold came in handy and I got a decent price for the other stuff from the toffs at the local market, Well you got to make a sheckel or two haven’t you?
Then something strange and horrible happened, not Romans this time but King Herod’s men. They were randomly searching out young babies all boys and once found they put them to the sword. Nobody knew why. But we decided to get going quick. So with our gold and of course the lamb we set off for Egypt. The lamb saw us through the journey, it was quite tasty a very generous gift and fortuitous as it turned out.
When we reached the border the Egyptians had heard about Herod’s antics and allowed us in.
“What’s your names?” they asked.
“Joe and Mary” Said I
“What about the baby?”
“Him? Well we thought we’d call him BRIAN.”
They called us through and we went into a new country and a new life of Brian!
510 words Michael White 2020