I can rightfully call myself a troglodyte, a cave-dweller, as I have lived in many a cave over quite a long period of time, up in Sacromonte(= the sacred mountain) near Granada. It was, all in all, a happy stay and if it hadn’t been for that maniac Leppe, who terrorised the whole valley, I might still be living there. I’d first heard of these caves from a dear friend of mine, Dominic, whom I met in Barcelona and then later on, as if instigated by Kismet, I met Nigel in Gandia, who after five minutes of knowing me, gave me the keys to his cave there. Talk about meeting good people on the road!
To say that my fellow dwellers there were a bit odd, would be an understatement and I fitted right in. Some of them had cockroaches the size of guinea pigs as pets, on a lead! They made for handy waste-disposal units. The rats were the size of buffalos and you would not want to cause a stampede, if you knew what was good for you. Actually, the strangest wildlife over there came in human forms, which tells you a little about my neighbours. Do I detect a slight tendency to exaggerate, in myself? Nah!!!
The mutts that ran around in abundance usually fed on dinosaurs and the odd stray police officer. They would have to come and pester us, once in a while, as they do! These blue fellows must really like their exercises in futility, for they would round up our dogs and take them to the pound, only to be released by a posse of us, who staged a breakout the following day! The reason that they gave us was that the neighbours complained! What neighbours? The nearest regular Joes and Joesies lived miles away, as this was in the Sierra Nevada mountains.
Now, I know that I’ve written about Zeus already, but the thought of that one occasion where he dragged that small police idiot of the mountain, still makes me smile in fond remembrance. You should have been there! Zeus looks like a cross between a pit bull and Godzilla, not a small pooch… One police officer of small stature decided, in his infinite witlessdom, to collar Zeus with a long stick that had a leash tied to the end of it. Zeus was not impressed and started running down the mountain side, the officer trailing in his wake and gathering quite a number of species of the local cacti. All the troglo-hooligans were literally rolling in the dirt, laughing their tits offs. Oh, how I wish we’d had a video camera that day. We would have made millions with that one!
Zeus’ owner was at that time Mauro, a Sicilian, who had possibly been run out of Sicily for being to weird. His sweetheart was Sabrina from Palermo and they had a semi-marriage that was made on the streets of Granada. He was a full-time junky and she was into pills and booze. When the police tried to arrest him for being stoned and disorderly, Sabrina would defend him teeth and nails and would accompany him to jail. Nice people, once you got to know them and if you took into account their little quirks!
I escorted them down the mountain one bright and sunny morning in Andalusia, on our way to make a Buck in Granada city center. This involved passing through the gipsy barrio, called Albeicin. We were well known over there and generally well liked, at that. One artist had painted a black cat on one of the white-washed walls of his hacienda. When Zeus noticed, he ran at a gallop and head-butted the white wall with a loud thud! He got up groggily, looked at Mauro, who went: “Tsk, tsk!” and had a look in his eye that seemed to say: “Why didn’t you warn me that there are bionic cats over here, Daddy!?” Yup, this was one kitty that got away! Toodeloo, gang!