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GáborJoins Security

Last week, Gábor joined the household.  He came to us from Hungary.  Gábor is rather unprepossessing but definitely arrests attention (see pic).  He has typical Magyar character traits, which include military talent, emotional heroism and mercurial instability.  He is direct and square, and can at times be downright cantankerous, feisty and difficult.  We’re still deciding on his exact station in the house, but he is now one of us.



Gábor’s prime duty is to form part of the security staff of the household.  Like the gargoyles of gothic cathedrals, he is here to keep malicious spirits at bay.  He has a particularly repelling effect on them.  With Gábor around, they will tend to pass us by.  In this, he will be assisted by Aries the Ram (see pic), who has the rear part of the dwelling covered.  Although, I must say, Gábor’s job here will be light as there are no outright evil spirits around, given that we’re within the grand protective field of Table Mountain.  But adventitious imps and incubi will have Gábor and Aries to deal with.


Gábor should actually report to Mika, our head of security, but given his anti-social stance, will initially report to me.  I’ll have to play this one diplomatically as Mika is taking none of his nonsense.  Nobody messes with Mika.  Mika (see pic) is two metres tall, packs 125 kilograms of pure muscle, says little and has a deterrent, solid look about him that withers the strongest.  Such incidents are rather unsettling to behold.  Mika joined us from Cuba a few years ago; all’s in place when Mika’s around.


Mika is ably assisted in his duties by his two lieutenants Miguel and João, two capoeira fighters from Rio de Janeiro (see pic).  They are a study in agility, strength and poise.  Avid students of the martial arts, they have been known to throw people off their feet without touching them.  As a bonus, they are part-time practitioners of the samba so keep the homestead energised.  It is suspected that Miguel has a soft spot for Mika but I’d rather not know.


These three men act unarmed and deal with opportunistic intruders of bad intent.  When the going gets tougher, the armed unit gets involved.  Chief amongst these is the gallant Sir Galahad, from Croatia, who comes galloping in on his steed carrying his golden shield (see pic).  Operating in tandem with him are the two amazons Phoebe, the spear-bearer, and Toxaris the archer (see pics).  They came to us from ancient Greece via Venice.  They have been known to sow confusion in the most organised enemy ranks, as you’ll understand.  And then there are the two Samurai from the Tokugawa shogunate, Takamori san and Yukimura san, who came from Kyoto to be exact (see pics).  There are currently no better swordsmen in the Southern hemisphere than these two.


It has come to my notice of late that the amazons have been cavorting with the samurais on duty.  Now, I’m all for free love and all that but not at work.  Mika is also not one bit pleased about this, and I’ve instructed him to look into the matter.  We’ll have to nip it in the bud.  That aside, we cannot reproach their professionalism and zeal.




We do of course have a small army to fight minor battles.  Our regiment, the Marmion Road Brigade, is led by Major Roberts (see pic).  You won’t find a braver unit around these parts.  Oxford educated and Sandringham trained, Major Roberts is both a gentleman and a soldier.  He is all reserve, stiff upper lip, the grin and bear it type.  Never complains.  We have spent many an evening discussing global matters and test cricket over port, single malts and cigars.  He longs for his club in the Old Country, but is taking his stationing here in good humour.  The amazons have also been known to flirt with him on occasion and rumour has it that he has yielded, but it’s all proper and discreet, and thus, ungentlemanly to discuss.


Our security staff can be tricksters who tend to disguise themselves as paintings and sculptures the moment visitors arrive.  They resume their life forms the moment visitors leave, when we’re alone, en famille.  We meet once a month for a security briefing, chaired by Mika.  They’re all strong characters, so he has to assert his authority in no uncertain terms.  At the last security briefing but one, Major Roberts and Sir Galahad, quite out of character, got into a heated argument about some technical aspect of security and had to be separated by Mika.  I mean they really lost it.  What a fracas!


The next security briefing is slotted for next week Thursday.  We’re looking forward to Gábor’s first contribution.  It’s bound to be another one of those meetings.  Now if you think we have our hands full with our security staff meetings, wait till you meet our music consort.  What a bunch, filled with fragile egos that have to be coaxed and cajoled to put on a concert.  I tell you, there’s a character or two among that lot.  But more about that in another missive.


Welcome, Gábor.  Now stop carping, grin nicely and get to work.





  1. Thank you, Anikó, for bringing Gábor all the way from Budapest via Munich and Dubai, all 8kgs of him!
  2. Mika is named after my close friend Miki Bemboy, who resembles him in many ways.