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BATIK ART BY JONATHAN S. EVANS
Confessions of an Itinerant Batik Artist

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TRAVELS IN EUROPE (Waiting for Divine Guidance)

 

 

What happened next was the catalyst that I needed to propel myself out of that situation and onto the next. My friend and neighbour, Phillip the Australian house builder was suddenly arrested by the local police, was thrown into gaol and accused of being a big drug dealer. It was obviously a clear case of mistaken identity for in reality Phillip rarely left home these days. He would stay up on top of his mountain with his interminable building projects only pausing to look out at his stupendous view and to kiss his girlfriend, Maria, who was expecting their first baby by this time. The police were making a stupid and cruel mistake but Phillip could not convince them of his innocence. Two weeks passed, I visited him in prison but we could make no progress in freeing him. Meanwhile Maria was getting more and more frightened and upset and Phillip more and more angry and frustrated.

 

At the beginning of February 1978, I was suddenly awoken at two in the morning by my friends Simma and Jeffrey. They brought the news that Phillip was to be deported at dawn that very day. He was terrified that something would happen to him en route and had sent a message asking me if I would come with him. I had about two hours to get my Ibiza life in order. Jeffrey gave me an old suitcase of his father’s which I hastily packed and Willi gave me his German army parka which I would need in northern Europe at that time of year. I drove over to Es Coll des Vens to say good-bye to a sleepy Marie Luz.

Then I was the airport at five in the morning, bought a ticket for Nice in the South of France and boarded the plane as unobtrusively as possible. Just before take-off, a handcuffed Phillip was lead onto the plane by two policemen and we took off as the sun started to rise. I don't think Phillip realized that I was on the plane until we landed in France and he was met by custom officials who finally allowed him to leave the plane and to go through customs and enter France. I had no trouble at all and he and I were joyfully united in Nice Airport.

There is a rather upsetting footnote to add to this adventure. I learned later from Marie Luz that Honey, my overly affectionate and extremely neurotic German Shepherd dog, went crazy a week after I left the island. Normally a very mild mannered dog, she attacked our goats and tore their throats out. She took off and Marie Luz never saw her again. Obviously I had not the slightest inkling of her attachment to me although I joked about her treating me like her parents. Dogs are amazing animals; show them love and they're yours forever. I've often wished that humans were as direct and pure in their emotions as animals are. If you see a German Shepherd dog out there on the Trail somewhere, give her a hug and a bone and she'll follow you anywhere.

 

 

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