Having started this blog, I suppose I should give you a bit more background about myself – even though I’m supposed to be a fictitious character.
Well, actually, no I’m not a fictitious character. I am real. That is, the person typing the bilge that you see before you is a real person who exists. It’s just that he’s appropriated a name which doesn’t actually belong to him.
And now, this person is going to tell you a story, which may or may not be true. I’ve not yet decided just how much of Malachi Brown I’m going to make up – though it’s sorely tempting to tell you all that I’m married to someone who looks like this:
So where to begin?
I was born in London because I wanted to be near my mother. Both my parents are from India, but emigrated to Blighty during the sixties. They already had two sprogs in the shape of my older brother and sister. The third, one Malachi S Brown – popped out in a hospital in Islington.
Why London? Well, I just wanted to be born in a classy city. No, not quite. My Dad was a professional engineer, and came to Britain looking for work. Couldn’t get it in the home country – if this blog takes off, I’ll tell you a bit about some of his adventures, but for now, take it from me, work was hard to find.
Dad came first, by himself, on a ship. I find it amazing when he tells me he didn’t get sea sick. Nowadays, he can’t go anywhere, bus, plane or car, without wanting to throw up. Mum followed him a year later, with her two brats in tow. We lived in London for a while, but later moved to a nice little town in the area of Barchester, a beautiful cathedral city in the West Country.
So why did we come?
Because we were skint. Why else would someone want to travel all that way, leaving behind tons and tons of friends and relations, for some cold, damp, drizzly little hell hole, where people are perpetually sniveling, with snot dripping out of their noses? Where the streets empty as soon as it gets dark, especially on Sunday afternoons, when the only excitement is from a long walk in the country to see a few dead sheep.
Well, that’s how it seemed at the time, especially to my Mum. She was homesick like anything. Things have changed dramatically since then. We stayed, and became part of the fabric.
Why did we stay?
This wasn’t in the script. The intention was always to return. My Dad was only here to earn enough to send back to family at home, who were starving. Then he’d go back to India, and with the qualification of having been in England, he’d have got a better job and better prospects.
But that’s not how it turned out. The three little sprogs – or should I say three little sprigs? – went to school, settled down, started getting bigger and bigger, till before you knew it, they were grown up, had gone to university, got jobs, and…well, we’d become British.
And now, I’m writing this blog. I realise that I’ve left a big gap between my parents coming to Bighty and…about the present time. In fact, I don’t think I’ve told you very much about me at all. Well, what did you expect? Didn’t you read my first post? Malachi Brown’s supposed to be anonymous. You’re not supposed to know who I really am.
But though I can’t tell you who Malachi Brown is in real life, I don’t have a problem of showing you what he looks like. He looks something like this: