Chapter Three

I was definitely going to drop in for a brew, my curiosity about Lou and Len was an itch that just had to be scratched.

I pulled into the neighbours driveway and was greeted by a bloke on a large grey horse.

I switched the quad off, not wanting to startle his mount.

“You must be the possumer” he said, extending his hand. “My names Bob, you rang me last night.”

I reached up and shook hands, his handshake was warm, like his smile.

“Yep names Bryan. Is it still OK to come onto your place?”

”Good as gold.”

“I see you’ve been on Lou and Lens, how’d you get on?” he asked, a wry grin plastered all over his heavily whiskered face.

“All good”, (I made it a point never to comment on other farmers, no matter how odd they were).”Do they both own the farm?”

“Yeah, they’re brothers.”

Things started to make a little more sense.

“It’s after 12:00 so I guess it was Len I saw you talking too.”

“It was, is Lou away for the day?”

“He’ll be back at his place; he’s never on the farm after 12:00.”

“Never?”

“That’s right, after 12:00 is Lens time.”

I could see by the grin on his face that he was enjoying my puzzled expression.

“Doesn’t Lou live on the farm?”

“No, neither of them do.”

“Anyway”, he said, scratching his horse’s ear, “I better get a move on, got some sheep to muster, drop in for a brew at the woolshed if you have some time up your sleeve.”

“Will do I replied.”

He grinned at me as he rode off.

I was definitely going to drop in for a brew, my curiosity about Lou and Len was an itch that just had to be scratched.

Bob’s farm was worlds apart from Lou & Lens. The fences were well maintained; the gates swung beautifully, and the race that ran up through the middle of the farm was a pleasure to ride on. Bob had fenced the large tract of bush that I was about to monitor. He apparently gave a stuff about the environment. I was beginning to like him more and more.

As is often the case, the northern bearing of the trap line took me into a huge ugly gut that was full of supplejack. It took me a couple of hours to get the line out. By the time I got back to the quad, I was hot and bothered and ready to call it a day, I’d get the other two lines out tomorrow.

The shadows were getting quite long by the time I got back to the woolshed. The pens were full of bleating sheep, and it was obvious that now was not a good time to drop in for a brew. My curiosity would just have to wait.

I was just about to take off when two dogs raced toward me, full of life and curiosity.

“Come here you ratbags”, called a figure that was casually leaning on one of the pens.

The two dogs slammed on the anchors, grass, and dust flying in all directions.

“You coming in for a brew?”, it was Bob.

“Wouldn’t mind” I yelled. After parking the bike, I followed Bob into the woolshed.

There is something about Kiwi woolsheds; I have always found them fascinating. The sights and smells of this one were no exception.

“Grab a seat, ” said Bob, pointing at an old wooden table, stacked with old farming magazines.

He disappeared into a side room, and while he was gone, I flicked through a couple of magazines.

He eventually emerged with two cups of tea and a packet of Vanilla wines. The tea was black, but I didn’t mind, I was thirsty, and it was wet.

We talked about the farm and possum monitoring and then I managed to swing the conversation to Len and Lou.

I could tell by the way he was looking at me that he expected this.

“Ah,” he said, “Len and Lou, “now there is a story.”

Leaning back in his seat, he folded his arms and began to tell me one of the strangest and saddest tales I have heard for a long time.

 

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