Tuesday, February 26, 2008
"Suppose you'll be off to the show next weekend Yorky, eh?"
"What show, Arthur?"
"Lake Cargelligo show mate. Ya didn't know?"
"Never heard a thing about it."
"It's at the showground mate. There's prizes for the best bulls, stud rams, dairy cattle, the greasy pig contest and a lotta side-show events. She's a real good show Yorky. Ya don't wanna miss it mate. Everyone for 50 miles around will be there."
"Are you going Arthur?"
"Shit yeah, It's the highlight of the year mate."
All that week as I was riding round on the tractor discing one of Arthurs' paddock, I was thinking of the Lake Cargelligo Annual Show. When Saturday morning came Arthur said,
"We'll take the whole weekend off Yorky. Ya don't have to work this morning. Anyway, it's a lousy weekend for the show. It always seems to rain on a show weekend. Has done for the last 3 years."
"Good on ya Arthur.", I said. "I think I'll ride into town early this morning."
"All right Yorky, but be careful 'cause those dirt roads are as slippy as hell, even in a Ute, never mind a motor bike."
"Can I use ya gum boots?"
"Yeah, help ya self mate."
"I'll wear a pair of overalls too. That'll keep mi good town clothes clean."
"Good idea Yorky. I'll be wearing mine too. That Showground will be like a big mud bog with all those people tramping around it for 2 days. See ya in the lake somewhere."
Arthur was pretty right on when he said the roads would be slippy. It took me about an hour and a half to get to town that muddy Saturday morning. The rain had stopped by the time I hit the bitumen road into the Lake. I hosed mi bike off at the garage and washed all the mud from mi gum boots. Mi green King-Gee overalls had stayed pretty cleaned and for a muddy Saturday morning I didn't look to bad at all, as I pulled up at the Dago's shop.
When I went inside the Greek Cafe, Jimmy Xmas was sat at the far corner staff-table drinking a hot cup of black greek coffee. Next to the coffee was a glass of cold water. He was puffing away on a Lucky Strike when I sat down across from him.
"Tikanyas, Jimmy Xmas", I said.
"Polyi kala Yorky. What'll ya have, ya bastard?"
"I'll have a hot cappachino Jimmy. It's a bit cool this morning eh?"
"It's-a-bastard Yorky. Every bloody year it's-a the same. It always rains on a show weekend. What-a to do mate."
"Oh well Jimmy, It'll be good for business. People will come into the cafe out of the rain."
"Many people stay-a at home today and my floor end up looking like a cattle yard. What-a to do?", he said as he threw his arms in the air.
"What you drink that Italian cappochina shit for Yorky? Why you not-a drink the Greek coffee?"
"It looks pretty strong and black to me Jimmy."
"It's-a good for you Yorky. I'll fetch you one. It's-a on the house mate. You're a good bloke Yorky. You're open to learn-a bit of Greek culture."
"Thanks Jimmy. It doesn't look too good to me but I'll try it anyway."
Jimmy Xmas comes back over to the staff-table with a small hot cup of Greek coffee and a glass of cold water.
"Here-a ya go Yorky. This is my favorite. I usta drink-a dis coffee back in my own-a country."
He put the small cup of jet-black coffee down in front of me with the glass of cold water next to it.
"You like-a some Ouzo in it Yorky?"
"What's Ouzo Jimmy?"
"It's-a aniseed drink. We drink it all the time in Greece."
"It it alcoholic?"
"Too bloody right-a it is. Whats-a use if it's not?"
"No thanks Jimmy. The coffee looks strong enough for me mate."
Very carefully, I took a sip of the Greek coffee. It was real hot, jet-black and very gritty.
"How you like it Yorky?"
"It's different. What's the water for?"
"Thats-a to wash it down after."
"Oh, that's a great idea. How thoughtful Jimmy."
Maybe the inventor didn't like the taste of his own coffee, I thought, as the black, tangy grit-water slid down my throat.
"You drink-a the water now Yorky.". Jimmy said as I finished off the small cup.
"The water tastes great."
"You make-a the joke, you bastard. Here, have a Lucky Strike."
"Yeah, I'm only joking, Jimmy, but I will try one of those Cappachinos now."
"Bastard Italiano coffee!", he said as he got up to make one.
As I was sat there having mi Cappachino and another fag, a young bloke called Gary Breany walked in.
"G'day Yorky, I saw ya bike outside mate. Thought I'd come in and see ya."
"G'day Gary. How ya going mate?"
"S'truth Yorky, you're picking up a pretty good Aussie accent mate. Another ten years and you'll be one of us."
"Sit down mate and less of ya bullshit. D'ya wanna hot Cappachino?"
"Why not. The old man gave me the day off work so I can go to the Show. What about you Yorky? Ya off to the Show mate?"
"Sure am. Mud or not it should be a real good day."
"Sure as hell will be mate. All the Cockies daughters will be in town today. I've got mi eye on one of 'em. They tell me she's a pretty fair sorta root."
"Yeah, sure mate and where ya gonna root her. Behind a stump in the mud?"
"Na, don't be stupid mate. Mi parents are going away for the weekend so I've got the place to mi self, apart from mi young brother, that is. Find ya self a good-lookin' Sheila, Yorky and come on down if ya like."
"All right mate.", I said. I'll see what I can come up with."
Gary Breaney was a month younger than I was. He was about the same build with a shortish hairstyle and a broad 'Occa' accent. I'd met him a while ago at a tennis match out at a Bush court and we remained good mates over the years I spent around Lake Cargelligo.
It was 10 O'clock now so I decided to hop on mi motorbike and cruise up to the Showground to see what sort of show it was going to be. I parked mi bike in the muddy paddock that had been roped off for parking, then paid the nominal fee for entering through the turnstyle. Although it was not raining now, the dust around the Showground had quickly turned to mud as quite a large number of people were already making the rounds of the shows.
I went straight over to where the Stock show was being held and talked with quite a few of the local Cockys. The local Cockys around Lake Cargelligo were, on the whole, pretty friendly blokes.
It was good for me to meet as many of them as possible, that way I would be able to find work for miself whenever the time demanded.
Stan and John Booth were leaning on the sheep-yard rails. As I walked around, Stan called out,
"Yorky, ya bastard! How ya goin' mate? Come over here sport."
When I walked over to where he was standing in a small group, Stan said to me,
"Why aren't you workin' out at old Burts' place anymore mate?"
"Cause he's a miserable, old bastard.", I said. "And we didn't see eye to ey."
"Jesus!", said Stan. "That's your brother he's talkin' about John. Ya not gonna' take that are you?"
"Course I am. He's no fucking brother of mine Stan. You get on with him better than I do, Mate.", said John.
"Are you really related to Old Burt, Stan?"
"Course we are Yorky, he's our step-brother."
"Oh, I'm sorry mate. I didn't realize. I should have known by the last name."
"Don't worry about it Yorky.", said John. "We feel the same way about the tight-arsed old bastard as you do mate."
"Are you sure?", I said.
"Fuckin' oath mate.", said Stan. "You're lucky sport, you only had to work with him for 5 months. We had to grow up with the mongrel-bred bastard."
Stan and John had a real good laugh at this.
"Tell John about the time he chased you with a fucking big axe Yorky. We could do with a good laugh mate. This fucking weather is really miserable."
I spent about half an hour with Stan and John and we all had a good laugh at my expense. I spent most of the morning walking around, until the sideshow events opened up their stalls. I blew a few dollars on the entertainment. Further around the outskirts of the Showground was a large crowd of men staring up at a wooden platform outside of one of the show tents.
On each side of the tent was a big metal framework which held large posters of big-busted strippers, smiling down at the crowd. Stan Booth and Kevin Skippy were looking up at the wooden platform, waiting for something to happen.
"G'day Skippy.", I said as I approached them.
"Yorky, ya bastard! How ya goin' mate? D'ya ride that bike of yours in today?"
"Yeah, it was a bit slippy in parts."
"Ya not right in the head, Yorky. Ya wouldn't catch me on one of those bastards in this type of weather, sport, Not on ya bloody life mate."
"What ya doing here Kevin?", I asked. "It's a striptease show isn't it?"
"Course it is mate, That's what I'm here for."
"What about ya missus?"
"She's over at the scone contest mate and I'm here at the breast contest. Look out Yorky!", he said all of a sudden. "They're coming out mate. We should git a real eye-full now!"
The sign, above the platform where the girls were walking up to, said,
FRED DUFFY PRESENTS EXOTIC STRIP TEASE
A few girls with big tits, clad only in a bikini top and long, lacy bottoms walked up onto the wooden cat walk. Fred Duffy was standing at the ticket booth with a big stick and a microphone in his hand.
"Ladies and gentlemen, Fred Duffy proudly presents, for the first time at your local Showground, a talented group of gorgeous beauties know as THE FRENCH FOLLIES! Let's have a round of applause for 'em folks as they walk out for your entertainment and pleasure!"
"Jesus!", said Kevin to Stan. "They're a rough-looking bunch of Sheilas!"
"Yeah. They get worse every year. Last years crew were a lot better than this bunch of whores." said Stan.
"I like the blonde in the grass skirt on the end, Kevin.", I said.
"She's the best of a bad bunch, Yorky."
Fred Duffy was 'sprooking' on the microphone for all he was worth now.
"Have a good look at 'em gentlemen. Where have ya seen as lovely a bunch of ladies like this before?"
"In mi shearing shed." Yelled Stan.
Fred Duffy ignored Stans funny comment as the crowd roared with laughter.
"These are the girls of your dreams gentlemen. Not one of them over 18! Young, tender virgins, here in the flesh, just waiting for an opportunity to dance for you on the stage, inside the tent. Come on gentlemen, git your money out. Fifty cents a ticket, right over here. All right ladies, down you go before ya git cold. First to pay gets the best spot. There they go down into the tent. Follow 'em in gentlemen and we'll get this show on the road."
"Come on Skippy", said Stan. "Git ya 50 cents out mate. Your too Yorky. It's too cold standing around out here. At least it may be a bit warmer in that tent!"
Kevin, Stan and Miself were one of the first customers in the tent and Stan was right, it was much warmer inside than it was outside. It took about 10 minutes before the show started because Fred Duffy wasn't going to run a show with a half-empty tent.
On one side of the tent was a wooden stage with red curtains down each side and a small pelmet curtain running across the top. The back of the stage had a burgundy curtain that fell in a mass of folds. A sign across the front of the stage read, THE FRENCH FOLLIES.
A young bloke with a microphone walked out on stage and everyone booed him and said,
"Git off the stage, mate. Where's the Sheilas we paid our good money to see?"
"Ladies and Gentlemen.", said the young, pudgy announcer. "We're ready to start the show!" The first young beauty you're gonna' see is The Exotic Jasmine! She is gonna' dance the Dance of the seven Veils. So give her a large round of applause. She dances better when she hears your appreciation!"
Someone out the back of the stage put on a scratchy old record of Egyptian exotic music. The young bloke on the stage said, 'Here she is, the exotic Jasmine!"
A large-breasted brunette, dressed in colored lacy veils, came out onto the stage. The Cockys and the Jackaroos clapped and cheered as she wiggled her barely covered rear-end.
"Hurry up and git ya gear off Jasmine!", someone yelled from the crowd.
Jasmine didn't seem to mind the shouts and cheers. She kept right on moving her hips and bust to the rhythm of the music. Every now and again she'd very suggestively remove one of veils and the crowd would shout out the number of the veil.
"One to go!", shouted someone from the back of the tent.
"Hurry up and git it off!", yelled another bloke.
"Show us ya tits!", yelled a voice near me.
Jasmine finished off her act, clad only in a G-string and nipple cones. For her finale, she bent over and looked at the crowd through her legs. They roared with approval as she wiggled off the stage, blowing kisses.
The young bloke with the mic came back on stage and said, "Isn't she lovely. Give her another big hand, all you blokes."
"I'd like to give her something else that's big!", yelled on of the town drunks.
"You haven't got anything that's big.", said the bloke with the mic.
The crowd laughed loudly at that sharp wise-crack.
"Now, for something completely different. We're taking a trip to Hawaii with the sexy, blonde, blue-eyed beauty, LOLITA!", said the MC.
A scratchy, Hawaiian slide-guitar song came out of the speakers and the dancer called Lolita shuffled onto the stage in a grass skirt. She had a grass top around her breasts and a lei of artificial flowers around her neck. In her long, wavy blonde hair she wore another artificial flower, pinned above her ear.
"This is it Yorky!", said Skippy. "This is the Sheila for you mate. Look! She's even lookin' at ya sport."
Halfway through her dance, she took off her grass top to reveal a large pair of breasts sitting in a scanty bikini top. The music stopped all of a sudden and the MC waked to the front of the stage.
"Alright gentlemen, who would like to come up and dance with the lovely Lolita?"
"Yorky would!", yelled Kevin.
"Shut up Skippy.", I said, with embarrassment. "I'm not goin' up there in mi gum boots and overalls."
"Come on mate! Show 'em how it's done. it'll be fun."
The MC was zooming right in on me now. He said, over the mic, "What's ya name mate?"
"His name's Yorky.", yelled Stan. "He's a pommy jackeroo."
"Come on Yorky.", said the MC over the Mic. "Ya git to dance withy Lolita and take off her grass skirt."
"We want Yorky.", said the MC
"We want Yorky.", yelled the crowd of Cockys.
Lolita stretched her arm out to me and Kevin Skippy gave me a good push towards the front of the stage.
"Yeah!" roared the crowd.
"Good on ya Yorky.", they yelled.
There was no escape now so I decided I'd give the crowd a good show for their money. The MC and Lolita helped me up the front of the stage in mi somewhat muddy rubber boots and mi King G overalls. I threw mi Suatters hat to Kevin and the crowd clapped in approval. The music started up at he beginning again and Lolita whispered in mi ear,
"Just do the same as I do Yorky and you'll be great."
Lolita wiggled her hips and so did I. The crowd clapped and cheered. Lolita slowly turned around in a circle with her arms stretched out to the side make a wave-like motion with her hands and so did I. The crowd was now hootin' and hollerin'. Loud whistles could be heard filling up the tent. After a few seconds of this, Lolita put her arms around mi neck and her hips rotated as she stared into mi eyes. For me, this was the best part. For a few seconds, the roar of the crowd faded out and I was transported to a beautiful Hawaiian Island. The Palm trees were swaying gently in the warm breeze and the smell of coconut oil was everywhere. It was now sand beneath my bare feet and I'd forgotten, completely, that I was dressed in gum boots and overalls. Lolita slowly leaned over to me and whispered in mi ear.", Slide your hands down my back and undo the string belt that holds up the grass skirt."
It felt like all my boyhood dreams had manifested before mi very eyes. Slowly, I slid my hands down the soft flesh of her damp skin. Mi hands felt for the string which held up the grass skirt.
"Just pull.". said Lolita, as she stared deep into mi eyes.
A warm smile appeared across her face as I felt the 2 strings start to move. When the string would move no more, she said, "Let them go now and the grass skirt will fall down on its' own."
The grass skirt started to fall away as she wriggled and gyrated her hips round and round.
Just then, I was snapped out of it by the roar of the crowd, as Lolitas' grass skirt fell at her ankles.
"You bloody little beauty!", yelled a voice which I knew belonged to Stan Booth.
"What a bloody ripper!", roared Kevin. "The pommy undid her skirt."
Lolita took her arms from around mi neck and said, "Keep on dancing Yorky."
As the music came to an end, Lolita bowed low to the crowd so they could see her large cleavage. The crowd yelled and clapped with approval. Then she walked over to me and put her arms around mi neck and gave me a big kiss on my cheek. She smiled at me and then made her way off stage, wiggling her exposed butt-cheeks as she went.
"Give her a big hand gentlemen.", said the MC, as he walked on stage from the wings. "The lovely Hawaiian beauty called Lolita!" He said 'Lolita' in a low, soft growl.
"What's ya name again sport?", he asked me.
"Yorky.", I said as the crowd clapped.
"And a big round of applause for a really good sport. The one and only local Hawaiian dancer, gum boots and all, Yorky!"
The crowd cheered and laughed as Skippy and Stan gave me a hand off the stage.
"What a fuckin' great show Yorky.", said Stanley.
"Jesus Christ Yorky, ya never told me you were such a good dancer when you were out at our place.", said Kevin.
"We were too busy for dancin' Skippy.", I said with a grin.
"Ya stole the show Yorky.", said a big cocky, Lucy McGuinnis, as he slapped me on the back.
"Ya gonna' have another go next show?", said another.
The show continued and the last girl to dance was a tall blonde, who was supposed to come from Texas. She wore boots, a cowgirl skirt, a frilly bikini top and a cowboy hat. At the end of her act she removed her bikini top but very carefully held a large piece of cardboard in front of her tits which read, HANDLE WITH CARE ~ BREAKABLES.
After the show was finished and I was walking out, the MC came over to me and said, "That was a real good show you put on Yorky. Lolita would like to dance with you again next show. Are you game Mate?"
"Sure I am.", I said. "I'd dance anywhere with her."
I must have danced at least eight times with her over the next two days. Between shows, the girls invited me backstage to meet everyone.
I'd stayed at Garys' place over the weekend and when I saw Arthur again, early Monday morning, he said to me,
"Did ya have a good time at the show Yorky?"
"Yeah, it was pretty good."
"They tell me you're a bit of a showman Mate. I didn't know you could dance."
"It must have been your gum boots Arthur.", I said with a wink.
All that following week I could not get Lolita out of mi mind. I disc-ploughed another of Arthurs' paddocks and normally mi mind was totally silent as I drove round and round a 500 acre block of land, watching the back wheel to make sure it was running the correct distance from the last furrow.
When the weekend came, I decided to ride mi bike to Condoblin, which was 60 miles away. Condoblin was a much larger town than the Lake but it was still considered a Bush town. My one main reason for riding there was the Condoblin show being held at the Showgrounds and the Blonde-haired, Hawaiian dancer called Lolita would be performing again as part of FRED DUFFYS FRENCH FOLLIES.
Saturday lunchtime found me filling up the small petrol tank of mi Honda 90.
"Going to town?", said Arthur as he drove past.
"Yeah, I'm off to Condo Arthur, to see the show again."
"Ya wanna' be careful Yorky, those showgirls are not worth it mate."
"Oh, it's not that Arthur, there's a few blokes from the Lake going, so I said I'd meet 'em there."
"Alright mate, ride careful and look after ya money Yorky."
Arthur was nobodys fool. He'd guessed right from the first time that I was going to the Condoblin show to see my little striptease friend. The ride to Condoblin was not too bad, although it was all dirt road. The ground had dried out and this time I was off to the show in mi good blue jeans and sport shirt and a decent pair of shoes that I'd bought from Rods Clothing store.
Thinking about it now, I would say that going to the Condoblin Show to see Lolita was another big turning point in mi life. It was not that I'd planned it that way but it seemed quite obvious to me that she was the next frame of a long-running movie I was watching.
When I reached the outskirts of Condoblin, the Showground was easily found as large red and white signs were nailed on almost every tree so I couldn't miss it. I seemed like all the signs were pointing out mi next step in the destiny of mi life.
When I rode onto the Showground, a couple of 'showies' soon pointed me in the direction of Fred Duffys' tent. As I parked mi bike around the back of the tent, one of the girls, Sheila, was walking out of a caravan. Sheila was a tall, leggy and rough sort of girl. She was about 22 and came from England. We had a lot in common which made our friendship a good one right from the start.
"Yorky! What are you doing here? I though you lived at Lake Cargelligo?"
"G'day Sheila, I came over to see the show again."
Sheilas' exterior was pretty hard 'cause she came from a lower-class, working family. Her straight, dyed-light hair didn't do too much to soften her facial features and her language was very course.
Even with all these apparent negatives, I could tell that beneath all the powder and paint, she had a very beautiful soft heart and I understood why she appeared as she did. Sheilas' part of the act was the long-legged Texas cowgirl who held up the 'Handle With Care' sign in front of her breasts.
"Ya sure ya didn't come to see Lolita (Christine)?", she said to me.
"Well, that's part of it Sheila."
"I don't think you'll do any good Yorky. I was talking to her about you the other night. Your name came up in our conversation."
"What did she say about me Sheila?"
"Oh, nothing bad Yorky. In fact, she said she thinks you're a really great bloke. She also said she thinks that you're too good for her and that she would probably end up hurting you somehow. Plus the fact she already has a boyfriend who works on the Showground."
"Oh well, I'm here now so I might as well hang around for the day. Will you tell her I'd like to see her between the shows at some point?"
"Alright Yorky. I'll pass on the message when I see her. She's still in bed asleep. I'll let her know, soon as I can."
"Thanks Sheila, You're a real pal."
"Don't say I didn't warn you Yorky.", she said, as she walked away.
The Condo show was almost the same as the Lake Cargelligo show had been the previous weekend. There were the usual Stud-Stock Ring, side shows and amusement rides, plus Condo warranted a large ferric wheel.
After the French Follies had performed their first show, I went backstage to see all the girls who I'd made quite good friends with the week before. When I walked into the small area behind the stage, they all looked surprised.
"Yorky, what are you doing here. We thought you lived in Lake Cargelligo?"
"Yeah, I do, but I wanted to see you all again."
"We're only here till tomorrow night.", said Jasmine, "Are you staying in town tonight?"
"I don't have anywhere to stay 'cause I don't know anyone in Condoblin."
"You could stay in the tent.", said one of the other girls. "Old Fred Duffy wouldn't know 'cause he's gone ahead to a place called West Wyalong, to fix up a space for us."
"Who's running the show then?", I asked.
"Doug is, and he probably wouldn't mind."
"He's my boyfriend.", said Jasmine. "He's the one who MC's the show for us."
Just then Doug walked into the room.
"Alright girls, I'm going back outside on the Mic now, so be ready to come out when I call for you."
"Hello mate.", he said, as he turned and saw me standing there. "Come to join the show again, have you?"
"Not today.", I said. "I'm just a spectator."
"Hey Doug, can Yorky sleep in the tent tonight so he can be here all weekend?". said Jasmine.
"Don't see why not. Old Duffys out of town so there's no problem there. I'll talk to you later, after the next show Yorky. Hang around mate."
The girls all followed Doug out, into the large tent. As Christine (Lolita) walked past me, I took hold of her arm and said,
"I'd like to spend some time with you, after the show finishes up this evening."
"Alright.", she said quite shyly.
That evening after the last show, I walked around the grounds with Doug and the girls. The show had closed down to the public but the rides used to run for an extra half-hour. This way, any of the 'showies', who wanted to have a bit of fun, got to ride for free. Because I was walking in a group with Doug and the girls, I got to go on many of the rides also. The show ground blokes were pretty kind to me and many of them said,
"Ya joining the show mate? It'll be good to have ya around sport."
I spoke to Christine of one of the more gentler rides that evening. She more-or-less told me the same thing as Sheila had said a few hour previously. The problem for me was, I didn't want to hear the truth. At that point, I decided to ask Doug if he could get me a job on the Show Ground.
"Just come with us when we move mate.", he said when I asked him. "I'm sure, when I see old Duffy, he'll give ya a job putting up and pulling down the tent, 'cause at the moment, I'm doing it all on mi own and along with driving the truck, it's getting too much for me."
"Alright, I'll do it. I'll go back to the Lake tonight and pick up some gear and I'll see ya all tomorrow afternoon sometime."
I said goodnight to Christine and hopped on mi bike and took off back to Lake Cargelligo. It was pretty dangerous riding back home at 12:30 at night 'cause the Lake/Condo road was a favorite haunt for kangaroos. I had to keep a good look out for them or I'd have made a real mess of miself and the bike, if I hit one. I'd already seen how much damage could be done to a Ute that had hit a roo at 60. That was enough to make me slow down a bit.
I stayed out at Arthurs' place that night and early in the morning, before Arthur was up and around, I rode into town, hoping to meet someone who would be driving over to the Condo show.
At around 10 that morning, as I sat in the Dagos' shop, a couple of young blokes came in and were joking with Jimmy Xmas.
"Dont-a spend all ya money at the show. Save some for me ya bastards.", said Jimmy.
I walked over to them and said,
"Ya going to the Condo show are ya?"
"Sure are mate.", said one of them.
"Isn't your name Yorky?". said another.
"Yeah, how d'ya know?"
"Surrey tole me about ya. He said ya worked out at Old Burt Booths place for a while."
"Yeah, that's right, Can ya give me a ride to Condo with ya?"
"No worries, Yorky. Hop in the Ute mate."
"I've got mi bike outside. I'll need to drop it off at Arthur Auberrys' place if ya don't mind."
"No worries sport. Arthurs place is on the way."
"Alright, I'll meet ya out there.", I said.
When I got to Arthurs' place, there was no one home. The family town car was not in its' usual place and Arthurs' Ute was parked under one of the yards' shade trees. It only took a few minutes to throw whatever bit of gear I'd taken out of mi suitcases back in. I left a short note telling Arthur I'd be back in a week or so and that I was taking one case with me and I'd leave the other and the rifle and pick it up later.
The motor bike was paid up 6 payments in advance so there was no problem there. I put in the note that I'd left the bike covered over in the machinery shed and if he needed to use it at all he was quite welcome to. With this done, I threw mi case and trumpet in the back of the Ute and the three of us sped off, up the yard, over the ramp and out onto the Condo road.
"What's the case for?", said one of the young fellas.
"I'm off to the Show Grounds for a while."
"Shit Yorky, how can ya do that? Ya mean to say, you're just going to up and leave?"
"What ya gonna do on the Show Grounds Yorky?", said one of the young blokes mate.
"I'm gonna work at a striptease joint. This real beaut young strippers' madly in love with me."
"Jesus, You're a lucky bastard Yorky. My old man wouldn't let me do anything like that. He's got me picking up sticks in a paddock we're trying to clear."
"That's alright mate. I served my apprenticeship at the scungy, fuckin' job."
It was much faster going, driving a Ute to Condoblin. An hour later, we truned off at the red and white Show Ground signs. When we got to the turnstyle gate, the bloke in the ticket booth asked me for a couple of bucks.
"What d'ya mean 2 bucks?", I said. "I work here."
"Who ya workin' for?"
"Fred Duffy. He owns the French Follies tent."
"Alright Cobber, ya can go straight through."
When I walked through the slit at the back of the tent, where the caravan was parked, the girls were all sat around a small table. They were halfway through a show.
"So you're really coming with us Yorky, are ya?", said Sheila.
"Sure am. I brought mi case and mi trumpet."
"You'll have to play us a few tunes after the show tonight.", said Jasmine.
Christines' Hawaiian music was playing. I knew she was out on the stage. When the music stopped and the applause started, she came through the side of the stage curtain and down the back steps.
"Ya boyfriends' arrived with his gear.", said Sheila.
Christine looked nervously at mi case and then at me. "Hi, ya really coming on the Show Grounds then?"
"Yes, I said. "I won't git to know ya if I'm not around ya, will I?"
"Ya may not like me when ya git to know me.", she said.
"Well, there's only one way to find out, eh?"
She didn't quite know what to say so she went out of the tent into the caravan. Just then, the slit in the tent-side opened and a girl of about 20 walked in. She had long black hair, dark brown eyes and a sharp, upturned nose and a pretty good figure, from where I was looking. She wore a tight-fitting sweater which showed off 2 large tits. A pair of black, skin-tight jeans shoved into a pair of black cowboy boots. Around her waist, she wore a wide, rhinestone belt. She had a black patent leather bag on her arm.
"Jesus-fucking-Christ!", she said, as she entered the tent. "This is the slowest, fucking show I've done for a while. These fucking local Yabos' are the most tight-fisted set of fuckin' bastards I've ever met.
They're so tight, they'd try to sell their own fuckin' shit to their grandmothers!"
She saw me sitting there and said, "What are you staring at fuck-face?"
"I didn't realize I was staring."
"Well, you fuckin' are. What are you fuckin' doing back here anyway?"
"This is Yorky.", said Sheila, who was just about to go on stage. "He's going to be travelling on the grounds with us for a while."
"G'day'.", I said.
"This is Nerada, Yorky. She's got the Snake Pit, a couple of tents down.:
"Pleasure to meet ya."
"What the fuck does an innocent kid like you want on a scungy, fucking show ground?"
"He's in love with Lolita.", said Sheila.
This comment made mi face flush. I could feel the heat rising at the back of mi neck.
"So, ya think by joining the show ground you'll git a fuck out a' Christine, do ya Mate? Well, I can tell ya, before ya even start, you'll git no fuck there 'cause Sampsons been fuckin' her for months now and he's about 10 times bigger than you, ya little fuckin' sawn-off!"
"Cut it out.", said Jasmine. "Don't be such a bitch. She doesn't mean it Yorky. Once ya get to know her, she's a pretty neat girl. Her boyfriend just dumped her for another girl. She's been cranky and bitchy for days now."
"Mind ya' own fuckin' business Jasmine.", said Nerada. "Just you look after Doug before someone steals him from under ya' nose!"
"That's not very likely Nerada. I look after my man."
"Ya mean, I didn't?"
"That's not what I said Nerada."
"Maybe not, but that's fuckin' close enough for me!"
By this time, Sheila was back down off the stage. When she saw the girls were still arguing over their men, she said, "That's enough you two fucking bitches! One more squeak out of either of you and I'll knock the pair of ya arse over tits and I'm not fucking joking either!"
Nerada was put back in her place with all that. She got up, mumbling to herself, as she made a fast exit.
"Ya see Yorky, nothing is as it appears, on the surface. If ya looking for a romantic life, ya won't find it travelling on the show ground.", said Sheila.
"Hey Yorky, I just called Duffy at the hotel where he's staying. He says you're hired. Start tonight when the show's over. I'll show ya the ropes mate.", Doug said as he came down off the stage.
"How much is he gonna pay me?"
"Ten dollars a week mate. Sleep in the tent and feed ya self. Welcome aboard Yorky!"
Australia had just changed over to dollars and cents at this time and I was still gettin' used to them. Seeing as two dollars made a pound, that was 5 quid a week and no tucker. That wasn't much of a wage but what the hell I thought. It's gotta be easier than working a farm.