Ok, this is where it gets weird!…
Ah, Beltane, the summer celebration of abundance, fertility and the fullness of life; delighting in the return of the Sun’s warmth and light. The Hawthorn is in bloom and depending on where you are from, it is now safe for you to bring in it’s flowers and sprigs to protect you and yours from mischievous spirits.
So, last Tuesday, when it was chucking it down with rain and a wee bit chilly as well, we descended upon the Gate Hangs Well Inn for warmth, food and beer. Having voted for what to do, it turns out it was a better choice than performing a ritual with the wet coldness around us. Yes, I know there’s a drought on at the minute, but hey, at least the Land is getting a good drink!
It was good to see the Grove members again, and even better to see one we haven’t seen for a loooong time, at her request I shall call her Glamorgain.
Glamorgain has been a very busy bunny what with having lots of fun being a seamstress for a theatre group and travelling around on her narrow boat, messing about on the river.
We discussed serious controversial topics such as the film the Scorpion King, and the visual charms of Professor Alice Roberts because she is such a good presenter and has wonderful presentation style… and laughing at HP Lovecraft’s face. It was that kind of a night.
Things got properly Beltane themed as I slipped my warm ciabatta into Briseilid’s milky sauce, then I got stuffed silly by my spotted dick, which I had to force down. I was knackered- who could have guessed a full pie dinner and a sweet pudding could be so filling? You get your money’s worth at the GHWI I can tell you!
And then we found the menu for Bushtucker pub-snacks…
Yep, you read correctly. Bushtucker as in grubs, beetles, worms and scorpions! Seeing I was tempted, Tatterhood asked if I was going to try one and that was it. My crunchy boiled and fried chitinous creature of choice was the 5 Bizarre star rated water scorpion. I’m a great believer in all living things being connected and that we should work with the world not control it. Bloody hate spiders though! Ok, hate is a strong word, when I think about it I’m repulsed by them. Their trapezium shaped heads with cold glaring eyes, their quick-moving legs and fat bellys as they just hang there in their stillness before crawling quickly or, worse, jumping for my face aaaarrrrgh! They FREAK me out, ok? I was there shouting in glee as Samwise Gamgee slashed Shelob in the face and stuck her gut with the sword Sting (as opposed to being stabbed by the singer Sting would just be weird, he seems such a nice guy- even if he is into tantric breathing during coitus.), go on lad!
I am getting better with them though, it’s just taken since childhood to sort of not scream when I see them.
And yes, I know scorpions are NOT spiders, they’re arachnids and I took this chance to see what they tasted like. Opening the foil packet, there was in my hand a creature resembling a cockroach. Asking how to eat it, I followed Glamorgain’s advice and treated it like a jelly baby: head first. Then the rest in one go. How did it taste? Like the smell in pet shops of wet rabbit hutches crossed with prawns. The Barmaid’s face was priceless when she came to collect the glasses.
It was a silly and immature evening full of seasonal mirth, which I shall end with a quote only those who attended will understand:
“Staring as he thrusted. Staring. Just staring.”