Nyns eus goon heb lagas, na ke heb scovarn

There is no down without an eye, nor hedge without an ear


Greater Relubbus Urban Council (GRUC) Leader, Billy Spargo, may himself, at 107, be in the fourth age, but he is very keen to promote continuing education for ‘youngsters’ in the third age (between 60 and 90).

Evening classes are an essential plank in the Spargo platform for education in the third age and the newly opened Shkelqim Bunjaku Adult Evening Institute, which teaches at reduced prices, though entirely in the medium of Albanian, is set to be an important part of the Spargo plan.

We look here at just three of the 5,000 courses available at the Institute.

Tractor Driving in Swimwear – with Shqiponja Meshkalla (28)

‘Ponja’ (28) has been a well-known tractor-driving and bewitching beauty for over 45 years in the countryside around Gramsh, south of Tirana. Last year, she made the brave decision to change career and moved to Tirana to manage a launderette so that she could be nearer a dentist to help with her growing halitosis and associated teeth problems.

She was so happily esconced in her new position that it was only by brandishing the most alluring inducements (£19.50 a week) that the Institute managed to secure her services on the tractor-driving course.

Ponja’s is no ordinary course. It is an intensive 10 week course starting on December 1st, which will be held every night from midnight to 2.30 am. Ponja believes that it will make an exciting difference if all course participants wear only swimwear.

At the end of the course, which is available at an amazingly low price of just £750 for the whole course, surviving graduates will not only be able to drive along cliff tops in the dark with astounding confidence, they will also be able to strip and re-assemble the engine in just 25 minutes.

Participants must supply their own Albanian phrasebooks and dictionaries so that they can follow Ponja. They will also require a torch so that they can read in the dark.

Stand up Comedy, with Bashkim Nexhipi (48) and his friend Kastriot Krizi (19)

A legend for their never-ending humour in the Tirana CID, Bashkim and his close friend Kastriot give two to one tuition in the art of stand up comedy. As shown in the photograph, they start off easily by dealing with the subject sitting down.

As both Bashkim and Kastriot speak very quickly, participants will be required to be extremely adroit handlers of their Albanian phrasebooks and dictionaries so that they can keep up – but it will be well worth it.

Bashkim is sure that the intensive nature of the two to one tuition (of twenty five 15 hour sessions without a break) will result in successful graduates being able to keep the Tirana CID in stitches on any occasion that they visit Albania and call in.

The course is available for just £800.

Bricklaying to the music of Çesk Zadeja, with Valdrin Prishtina (65)

This course will introduce you to the music of the Father of Albanian Classical music, Çesk Zadeja, as you learn to lay bricks to the tune of his immortal notes in the expert hands of master bricklayer Valdrin Prishtina.

There will be no language problems here, since Valdrin is completely deaf and prefers to communicate via sign language.

The musical brick-laying course is expected to be very popular and hopeful participants should put their names down early to avoid disappointment.

The course, which takes place on December 3rd from 6.30 pm to 6.45 pm, costs just £300 per person.


On Thursday evening, crowds of worshippers flocked to what should have been just another ordinary choir practice at the 50,000 seater Methodist Central Hall in Boswedden Lane, when news leaked out of a dramatic spat between a worship leader and the organist at this centre of Cornish Methodism.

Choir practice is usually attended by just the 400 strong choir. However, news of serious altercations between two leading figures attracted a crowd of several thousand concerned and curious Methodists.

Worship Leader, Agnes Penberthy (91) of Colinsey Road, Penzance is alleged by one witness (Maude Tregellis, (89)) to have given a “poke in the eye” to the organist, Madron Tregellis, because he had disagreed with her choice of hymns and refused to play the music for them, which led to a protracted and heated exchange of un-Christian expressions, culminating in the alleged poke.

According to Ms Penberthy’s civil partner, Audrey Hicks (79), Mr Tregellis (pictured here on the left) yelled out, “I aren’t gunna ‘ave she ‘it me li’ gat!” before striking her across the face.

Ms Hicks then admits that she “laid into that bugger Tregellis with my stick till ‘ee went ovver!”

Ms Tregellis (the organist’s sister) confessed “I lost it completely when that cow ‘it my brother with ‘er stick and tha’s why I bit ‘er ear off!”

An unseemly all-in geriatric fight ensued, which was only broken up by the timely arrival of officers of the Relubbus police.

When informed of the event, the Minister, His Holiness Methuselah Metherell (70) decreed that this unseemly disagreement in the House of the Lord could not be put to rights in the civil courts, but that it must be sorted out where it started ‘Up Chapel’.

Thus the scene was set for the intended great reconciliation at choir practice on Thursday evening, which drew the huge crowds.

Under the fearsome eye of the Minister, the sinning duo of organist and worship leader approached the pulpit in a numbing silence transfused with the tingling pent up excitement of the thousands of onlookers. Then, unable to contain her anger management problem any longer, Ms Hicks yelled out, “Gwon Agnes, whack the bugger again!”

As if she had been waiting for the cue, Ms Penberthy (pictured here in happier days) drew back her walking stick as if to strike a blow and, in so doing, overbalanced and fell hard against a pew, knocking herself out.

The booming sound of Minister Metherell's bass voice then rang out across the mass of startled faces, "Es yo, behold the Lord 'ave spoke!!"

Peace then descended upon the chapel again.