The Curious Case of the Gozo Gobon

Where Has the Tranquility Gone?

Once upon a time in the peaceful island of Gozo, where the ħobż biż-żejt tastes like a slice of heaven and the horizons stretch endlessly into the Mediterranean blue, something rather peculiar occurred. It disrupted the daily calm as effectively as a pastizz mid-fry jumping out of the oil.

The Mystery Begins

It all started when Spiru, a Gozitan farmer who believed his gbejniet were the eighth wonder of the world, woke up to an ear-piercing gobon. Now, ‘gobon’ might not ring a bell, unless you’re familiar with Maltese for ‘noise’, but this gobon wasn’t just any racket—it was as if someone was using the Azure Window’s remains as a giant gong!

The quaint town of Xagħra was in an uproar, people spilled out of their houses like ġbejniet rolling out of a grocer’s bag. “Uwejja!” they exclaimed, searching for the culprit. Was it the festa coming early? Had someone discovered oil beneath the Ggantija Temples? Kollox was possible on that bizarre day.

The Investigation

Enter Zaren, the self-appointed investigator (with a moustache so impressive it had its own zip code). With a strut that made the ladies swoon and the chickens suspicious, he printed out his title on A4 paper—Chief Shhhheriff—for all to see. Zaren was determined to solve the mystery of the gobon. He started by poking around Ta’ Kola Windmill, questioning the old windmiller, Pawlu, who was too engrossed in a rabbit stew to notice the earth-shattering din.

“I’ve been stirring this fenkata since sunrise, and not a gobon did I hear over the simmering sauce,” Pawlu declared, wiping his brow with a rabbit’s ear. “And if there’s one thing I know, it’s my fenkata’s soundtrack.”

A Turn of Events

Just as Zaren was about to give up and join Pawlu for stew, he stumbled upon a scene straight out of a Maltese postcard gone rogue. There, in the middle of It-Tokk Square in Victoria, stood Carmelina—a local street artist known for her avant-garde renditions of Il-Karnival ta’ Malta—hammering away at a huge structure shrouded by a tarpaulin.

The locals gathered, keeping a safe distance from Carmelina’s manic energy, eyes wide and fingers plugged in ears. Zaren approached her, his face stern with authority. “Excuse me, but do you mind explaining this ruckus?”

“Mela, what’s it look like, Sherlock?” Carmelina snapped, pausing her hammering. “I’m inventing the next big thing for Gozo!”

The Unveiling

With a dramatic flourish, she pulled off the cover, revealing a gargantuan instrument—a hybrid between a tromba marina and a village festa firework. The locals were gobsmacked. That was the source of the gobon! It had the visual assault of a kaleidoscope at war with itself, and apparently, the sonic boom of a jet engine serenading a brass band.

Carmelina’s creation, dubbed “Il-Bozza Blast,” was intended to be Gozo’s call to the world—an auditory landmark louder than the cannons of the Valletta Saluting Battery. With a twinkle in her eyes, she invited everyone to the first (and possibly last) concert featuring the monstrosity.

Epilogue: Quiet Returns?

The day of the concert came, and the tension was thicker than hot qassatat pastry. But as Carmelina struck the first chord, something magical happened. Instead of an overwhelming gobon, a harmonious melody rang out, uniting the familiar tunes of Valletta and Gozo, of folklore and future. The sounds of Il-Bozza Blast blanketed the archipelago, wrapping it in an auditory hug that even made the Comino channel waves dance in rhythm.

Kollox was finally peaceful again—or at least, as peaceful as it could be with Carmelina’s new-fangled musical wonder on the scene. And as for Zaren, he hung up his Chief Shhhheriff hat, happy to retire to a life of fenkata feasting and the occasional rabbit stew.

Now, whenever someone speaks of Gozo, they don’t just mention its serene beauty or pristine shores. They speak of the “Gozo Gobon,” an event when silence was stunned by sound, and a day when Gozo became even more legendary, one gobon at a time.

And hey, if you’re ever visiting the island, muffle your ears just in case—Carmelina might be tuning up for her next big performance.