Well! What a week of glee…it was my birthday on Saturday, and dear Aunt Weevil paid for us to go to the Toad Fondling Festival in Maiden-Up-The-Duff, in Fife. She’s so thoughtful, and knows exactly what sort of birthday treat I like. The weather was perfect, we took a picnic and sang songs of plague and pestilence on the way!
The festival was marvellous, so many exhibitors. The West Wankel Wood Turners were there and there was quite a tense atmosphere before we knew what they were going to turn the wood into. It was wine! That set the day off with a bang! I was three sheets to the wind before 10.00AM and had received my first police warning by half past. Weevil was bladdered before I picked her up that morning.
We started the day with a visit to the Trebollocks Toad Rubbing Association and said hello to a few acquaintances (after a short trip to the Gin Tent). It’s become quite the new sport, with specialist glove stands everywhere that have caught onto the craze and charge the earth.
Safety levels were at a maximum, with a small St Vitus Ambulance stall next door. They had a special poison unit attached which has been a godsend at past festivals when I’ve taken Folly with me. She will not learn to hold toads without licking them. Bloody tongue the size of an avocado, but never mind – that’s forgotten.
I did learn from Professor Rimsky-Spatula that a highly rubbed toad can be jettisoned from the hands at speeds of up to 150km/hr. The spectacle in the rubbing arena was phenomenal. Only two fainted, and only one black eye from a flying toad.
The Quedgeley Toad Balancers were there, too. A mainly male organisation that specialised in spoon balancing on noses and other body parts – they
have just branched out into toads to jump on the band wagon.
I do think they are rather arrogant with their ‘UK Champion’ banner as they’ve not won anything yet. Such arseholes plague these events.
However, one young lad from our neck of the woods balanced this toad for 52 hours which was most impressive. He only put him down by mistake when someone handed him a Guinness. I took a photo.
There weren’t many tortoise flingers this year, I was so terribly disappointed and so was Weevil. She really kicked of big style. The organisers told her that she should calm her temper and stop spitting, and then a policeman appeared so we wandered off hastily for another gin. Good job Aunt Vom wasn’t there, really.
The only one flinging our shelled-reptile friends was an elderly lady of 84, who didn’t seem very focused on where she was flinging the tortoises. They seemed to just whizz off into the woods, the next field, and the boot of someone’s motor car. Weev said it was pointless but I think the local children enjoyed it.
And this photo (left) is Derek. He is the champion toad, trained by Mrs Nora Chunderly of the Gloucestershire Toad & Frog Rubbers. It’s a very shiny toad, as she has rubbed him every day since he grew legs. I was fascinated by the range of noises he makes when he takes off. It was like a bullet from a gun.
On propulsion, he will go from 0 to 60 in 5 seconds which is a British world record.
She gave a talk in the afternoon, not really sure what it was about though. I was pretty bollocksed by then and Weev was asleep under the table.
But all in all, a wonderful day. I am going home with my new toad-rubbing manual to try some new techniques. All I need is some almond oil apparently…… and some elastic.