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Tales from the Land of Serenity Part 35
[With thanks and acknowledgement to Steve Bonello ]

A mere two minutes after Doris, our demure daredevil of demented proportions, mounted her one-woman assault on that unsightly shrine in the middle of our much treasured and democratically elected republican artery of Serenity, the very heart – if such a heart exists – of our highly prized and much cosseted stolen jewel in the crown of our capital city which, in case you’d forgotten, is on proud display as YUROPEEN KAPITAL TAL-LIRA-TAL- KULTURA-TAL-KOSTRUZZJONI-TAL-KORRUZZJONI –TAL-LIBA-TAL-LABURISTI-TAL-ASSASSINAZZJONI-TAL-ĠURNALISTI-TAL-AWTENTIĊITÀ - for authenticity is what we are, Serenity, is what we are! – we are TAL-POPLU-TAL-POMPOSTA-TAL-IMPOSTER-VERU-BOMBA-ĦAFNA-BOMBASTIKA-ĦAFNA-ĦAFNA-ĦAFNA-ĦAXJA-HOBZA- ĦAXJA –GRAZZI- ĦAXJA- ĦAFNA-ĦAXJA

Veru…A mere two minutes after our darling and devoted Doris, a Doric descendant of Boadicea and Delilah and Ġustizzja and all who sail in her, after she battled bravely against inanimate objects posing such a threat – flowers, candles, photographs, and other such obviously offensive obstacles to Serenity’s serenest attempts to cover up anything which gets in the way of our smiling attempts to keep the home fireworks burning and our stiff upper lip snarling at anything or anyone who dares to interfere with our perfectly acceptable insistence that it’s BUSINESS AS USUAL and if you don’t like it then you can F’OXX OFF BECK TO YOUR OWN CUNTRY unless you happen to be a citizen of Serenity who can show us the receipt and proof of purchase, but no, don’t bother naming names or differentiating between those who waited in a line for many years and those who, to be blatantly Boris about it, did not. discount wedding wears with lace

Tajjeb – ux? Tajba, tajba. Tajjeb - oxx? Tajba, tajba.
Doris – ux? Tajba, tajba. Doris – oxx? Tajba, tajba.

Il-ostja. A mere two minutes after Doris launched her daylight attack, busying about with her broomstick and innocently tidying away the clutter from our streets, then those wretched ragamuffins of unreasonable rebellion against the rightful rulers of sublime retribution demanded – albeit in a quiet and polite kind of way – that the same memorial which had so recently been savagely assaulted by Doris, dressed to kill in the crimson colours of our Leader, should become a permanent fixture of our peaceful placid streets! What felony is this, my friends? Why cause a mutiny when bounty spurts out of our blood and gushes through our veins? Why rock the boat when the booty is ours – ALL OURS – and it’s there, right there, for the taking?

Guns at the ready, pitchforks poised, the counter-attack was swift and merciless. Our erudite and well-versed stuffed-to-bursting King and Connoisseur of Cream-filled Culture came to the rescue as if tossing off his cannoli-covered cloak of half-masticated chivalry and placing it at the ingrown toenailed feet of Our Lady: Dor-Reżistenza. Such a splendid sight is rare outside Serenity!

Our Kustodju tal-Kultura, a bonhomie of courtesy and charm, has taken it upon himself to become the beacon of civilisation as we’ve never known it. The arbiter of alabaster excellence. A sow’s ear, curled up pink and wrinkly in that ill-gotten silken purse.

‘We shall defend our island,’ he said, ‘whatever the cost may be.’

‘We shall fight them on the beaches,’ he cried, ‘and in the fields between the tower blocks and boutique hotels, and in the streets, beneath the cranes to the sound of drills. We shall fight them in the hills, although we don’t have any and if we did, we’d flatten them to make room for a burgeoning array of maisonettes and apartments and penthouses and row upon row of empty-eyed vacant garages! We shall never surrender!’ he screamed.

That shocked the ragged down-at-heel bunch of virtuous vagabonds who shuffled off, forms in hand, to submit an application in the vain hope that there might be a permanent memorial to a journalist who did everything she could to undermine the spotless name of our Serenity. To what we now refer to as a ‘tragedy’, this ruthless critic of our robust regime just so happened to be blown up in a car bomb one Monday afternoon which, as we all know, left deep and unhealed wounds on the bleeding heart of our compassionate Leader who serves as an example to us all.

Descended from the valiant Knights and dashing crusaders of yore, our Leader can recount tales of the Great Siege as if it were yesterday! He, my friends, is a story-teller extraordinaire! He can sniff out a conflict of interest when there is one and you can see his nose extending as he does so! Such is his mastery! Such is his skill! And, like those who lick the first signs of dirt off his well-polished designer Italian shoes, he knows which side his brioche is buttered on. Conflict? It does not become him. It does not serve his interests nor the interests of Serenity which are mounting up at such an incredible speed that the green-eyed goblins from the never-never-have-we-seen-anything-like-it wider world of somewhere we have never been are pointing their envious fingers our way and accusing us – laughable as this is – of plundering the Panama canals and defiling virgin islands.

Mhux hekk!

We just don’t want unsavoury reminders of blood spilt – and accidentally – within living history – almost four months ago to be precise – when we are trying, against all the odds, to smooth over the cracks in the pavement caused by excessive building work facilitated by permits granted in the two-minute time limit between nailing notices of our plans on every building vaguely reminiscent of historical antiquity, which clearly set out our intentions in minus ten-point typeface which are legible to those with 20-20 vision if they obtain the highest-strength magnifying glass and peer excessively closely towards the miniscule notice hammered into the building of supposed historical importance, thus chipping away at the stonework as it does so and rendering the aforementioned historical building useless.

So why the ragged grumpy bunch of muttering dissenters think they can win by going down the normal channels of bureaucratic paperwork is beyond us! We cut through red tape as quick as cutting down a tree!

Beware, good citizens of Serenity. These disloyal traitors are trying to squeeze the last drops of oxygen from our noble past. They are trying to overthrow our only claim to fame, excluding those things we’re now becoming famous for on the international stage. They are trying to disfigure our one and only heroic victory fought a mere 453 years ago no less.

And even though we enlisted the trusty support of our rustic artisan sandal-wearing tokenistic homespun lentil-soaking little band of heritage protectors known so fondly as Din l’Art Ħelwa to back up our claim, they – being homespun sandal-wearing lentil-soaking henna-haired matted dreadlocked stuck-in-the-past preservers of some long-lost and thank god for that antiquity – simpered that no, the flowers and candles and photographs placed gently on this sacred monument to our resplendent honourable past which bears no resemblance to our present, were causing no damage whatsoever to this sturdy reminder of our one – but it was HUGE - it was MASSIVE – our one moment of glory an extremely long time ago.

Be warned, good citizens, for now ‘tis time to fight. If anyone is to dig up and unearth the remains of archaeological artefacts and cast them aside on the scrapheap of antiquity, then such a noble task will not fall into the hands of those who seek to overthrow us. No, good citizens, this task it falls to us, to us, your Leaders. If anyone is to desecrate our valuable heritage then this task, so proudly, falls to us!