The problem with Bulgarian shepherds

And the attractions of Anglo hippies.

It’s not every day that someone suggests that I become a shepherd – more like every week – but I think that I now know why I am being asked. In France a common complaint is that a fair number of shepherds are philosophy students who headed for the hills after the Gaullists won in July 68, and following various elections thereafter. Many excelled at small-scale horticulture of a spliffable nature but were unable to improve on the spectacularly poor performance of Little BoPeep, so it not surprising that farmers there are not enthusiastic about yet another arty-farty type bothering their livestock.

In Spain things are different, and it is not uncommon to meet Bulgarian shepherds who charge less than the native variety and who, carefully phrased, are actually prepared to sleep in the mountains with the sheep. Although this is all great news, it is still possible to see the attractions of an Anglo hippy who looks like

  1. He might do it for nothing and a hut (NEVER mention the satellite dish).
  2. He doesn’t eat mutton.
  3. Butchery is beyond him, however much he might be tempted by a portion of shepherd’s pie or cervelle en matelote (which I think they nicked from Mrs B).

Your average Bulgarian shepherd is a hungry fellow.

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  1. It might be held that there are few things sadder than eating a sheep in the knowledge that it has never known love, however brief.

  2. More like non-entendre. Lack of Slavic language provision has been a characteristic of the Spanish education system ever since old General Malaise took over, way back in … let’s make that 1714

  3. It’s that old devil, stalled love, again
    Gets behind me and keeps giving me that shove again
    Putting rain in my eyes
    Tears in my dreams
    Rocks in my heart.

    Sang Horace the goat.

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