Sunday 5th of June :Hungover in London



“I’ve got a bastard behind the eyes” as the charming Mr Withnail says. I rarely have hangovers, a rare and dangerous gift which goes some way to balancing some of my family’s more troublesome inherited traits, so resent them when they set up shop in my head. Jon went out for a run, as did Lisa who had been late to meet us because she had been preparing a picnic for the Test Match at Lords. They left us to cut up strawberries while they jogged along the canal. Then they came back and made us all delicious scrambled eggs before discussing whether they should take a Rose or champagne to the cricket. “Who are these people?” and more importantly, “what are they doing fraternising with the likes of me?” Sobered up, Jon seemed less enthusiastic about being my agent. But I don’t intend letting him off; “never mind quaffing champers at the cricket, get to work you indolent f******”  – no kind of gratitude for providing us such a comfy bed but Jon is from Kenton in Newcastle and likes that sort of thing.

Never mind. Our heads hurt and our rucksacks were too heavy. Just because we managed to cram them to the very brim didn’t necessarily mean we have packed efficiently. Or maybe we have just got soft. I say “maybe”  like it’s open to debate, too much of me is squidgy. Am I too old to do anything about it? This is going to be a year long f***ing  moan if I am.

We spent so much time scurrying around underground on Sunday you would think we were in the Vietcong. The Olympic Games may seem like a catastrophically selfish vanity project by our country’s capital but living there these last two years has been a massive pain for the indigenous folk. The underground announcements have been long lists of cancelled services and entire line closures over the weekends. My mate Cathi says “it has been like being a prisoner in your own city” and is convinced as many terrorists will be attracted to the events as athletes.

We eventually hooked up with Shaun and his family in The Mason’s Arms in Kensal Green for a last Sunday dinner on English soil for  flip knows how long before struggling out towards Heathrow.  Shaun introduced Wifey and I to each other sometime around the middle of the last century – “I accept the gratitude and the blame” he stated before we wandered out into slate grey skies and driving rain.

£5 an hour for the wi-fi  connection at the hotel, which seemed a damn cheek given the price of the bloody drinks.

Right Song at the Right Moment – Tom Waits “Blue Valentine” on the ipod shuffle in the hotel: perfect Sunday evening music whatever you are doing.

Wrong song at the wrong moment – some shit Eastern European rap-disco rattling out of some drug dealer’s twat-wagon in West London.


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