Springtime In Chicago…



The joys of business travel.

Yesterday morning at 04.30 am – a Sunday morning – I “awoke”, showered, dressed, and left the house to drive to Heathrow for my 07.45 flight to Chicago, en route to an industry conference and exhibition in Louisville, Kentucky, in the US of A.

I admit that I was tired – even my brief sleep had been fretful. Even after all of these years of traveling I never sleep well before an early get up. I am constantly checking that I have set the alarm, and doing a mental check that I have packed everything I need, and reminding myself not to forget my passport, credit cards, my glasses, my hairbrush….

Normally for an 07.45 flight on a Sunday I would leave home around 06.00. But, this was an American Airlines flight and I was aware I would need to check in at least 90 minutes before take off (they do not allow mobile boarding passes), pick up a fistful or so of dollars, and be prepared for additional security. So, it was a 05.00 departure instead. A proper red eye….

The journey to the airport was easy and uneventful. To be fair, there is not much traffic on the sunken lanes of the Surrey Hills at that time of a Sunday morning. I don’t think I saw another car until I got on the M5.

I parked. I checked in. I passed through security (fast track of course), got my dollars. I went back to security to retrieve the trolley bag I had left there. I was very tired. The gate was announced so I made my weary way there – no time for a coffee in the lounge – and, joy oh joy, was pulled aside for additional security checks. So, it was off with the shoes and swabbed on my hands, belt, pockets and socks while someone else rummaged through my carefully packed (yeah right), and recently retrieved suitcase. And, I must add that I was wearing new shoes and the process of taking them on and off was not without pain….

Despite the fact that I was traveling in economy (how far have I fallen) I still had priority boarding, so was soon jealously walking through the business class section (sigh) t take up my seat in the first row in economy. This row at least affords a little extra leg room, but, unfortunately, it also affords frequent glimpses of champagne being served and of horizontal people sleeping. This row also seemed to be the preferred short cut for one of the stewardesses when needing to pass from one aisle to another, stepping over my partially outstretched legs. She was not the most “athletic “ person so often managed to nudge me on the way.

No champagne or sleep for yours truly. Despite the fact that the plane was half empty and I had a row of three seats to myself, those seats were not the most comfortable. They were quite narrow and certainly would have struggled to accommodate an average American booty. The extra leg room did mean that I had a little more room in which to squirm and try, unsuccessfully, to find a position of relative comfort. Even through closed eyes nothing could keep out the glare of the big video screen just in front of me which was tracking our progress towards Chicago O’Hare International and the current time in Cape Town, Sydney, Abu Dhabi, London, Beijing, Chicago, Miami, Lima, Vancouver, and Honolulu…..

Sleep was also not forthcoming due to the amount of turbulence we experienced throughout the flight. It was very bumpy. There were several “fasten your seatbelts” announcements and much careful juggling with mugs of hot coffee. It was particularly bad as we passed over the southern tip of Greenland, a place which I noted was called Frank’s Fracture, which seemed quite apt….

So, it was a relatively boring eight and a half sleep-deprived hours, not helped in the least by the fact that the in-flight system was not working in economy class. At least from my vantage point I could catch brief glimpses of movies being shown on the screens of those horizontal people sleeping in business class.

The cabin crew sought to avoid a riot in economy by offering drinks and ice cream on a regular basis and enthusiastically wishing people a good day. Like the service, breakfast was very American – pancakes with stewed apple and scrambled eggs with chives. Served together….

Nevertheless, in just one brief half a lifetime later we touched down in Chicago in good time to make my connecting flight to Louisville.

We touched down in Chicago in the middle of a snow storm. In April. In Springtime. Visibility was not great and the snow was already 3 inches or so deep. Nonetheless, we disembarked. I got on the shuttle bus to the domestic terminal, feeling quite jealous of my fellow travelers wearing their winter coats and waterproofs. I passed through security for just the third time today (the shoes, the shoes…..) and, this time, managed to remember my trolley bag (despite being very, very tired. I managed to get to my gate in good time and was relieved to see that the flight was on time.

We boarded. All of the passengers took their seats, buckled up and the doors were closed. It was at this very point that some phones of people in business class pinged and their owners called the cabin crew over. The cabin crew went to the cockpit and, sure enough, the captain surfaced to announce to us all that the flight was being cancelled due to the poor visibility of the snow storm. 

We disembarked. We joined the very, very long rebooking queue. I called my booking agent and was informed that there were no flights to Louisville with availability until the following evening. 

I was stranded in Chicago in a snow storm and would miss the whole first day of a three day industry conference and exhibition. And I had got up at 04.30 am and was very tired. 

The joys of business travel.

April 15, 2019 at 4:58 pm Leave a comment

Christmas is cancelled….




Let’s just cancel Christmas…..

I am feeling a little bah humbug. The world has gone mad and the festive spirit seems a fair few egg nogs and sherries distant as yet.

Wars continue to rage across the Holy Lands.

Paris, the City of Light, is literally alight with the flames of burning tyres,  burning cars, burning shops, and the fluorescent glare of les gillets jeunes (yellow vests) who re-enact episodes of the Purge every weekend in an effort to inspire revolution against the government of metrosexual Macron. And, the nationalist of Marine Le Pen cheer them on from the sides, waiting for their opportunity to seize the power.

America is already closed for Christmas. Trump the Fool continues to demonstrate the diplomacy and political awareness of a petulant toddler, shutting down the government in a fit of pique at the Democrats’ refusal to fund his wall. Having watched back-to-back episodes of Games of Thrones, the President of the USA remains convinced that this is the only way to keep the Wildings at bay and so keep America from becoming a lawless, anarchic state, such as Paris on the weekend.

Meanwhile, closer to home, the selfish employees of Northern Rail and South West Trains strike in a bid to make it as difficult as possible for people to make it home to loved ones in time for Christmas. And, no doubt, some crazed vigilante Vegan with a drone has managed to close one of the busiest airports in the world for 36 hours, costing millions and ruining the honeymoons, funerals, holidays and Lapland trips of thousands.

And even worse, the Christmas Ghost of Brexit still looms large with no resolution as yet in sight. We remain trapped between the prospect of  a Victorian Tory Government lead by Boris the Buffoon or Rees-Mogg, and the certain economic devastation, social division and political isolation which would inevitably result from crashing out of Europe on a no deal. All this at the behest of 17.4 million ageing and misinformed racists (or, “I’m not a racist but…”) and Little Englanders with fairytale visions of a return to the Nineteenth Century, when England ruled the waves and built an Empire on the back of the blood and bodies of Irish and Scottish soldiers, becoming the industrial power of the world by exploiting the natural resources of everywhere we, illegally, planted a flag in the name of Queen and Country.

Or, even worse, the threat of a Corbyn Government, economic devastation, and a political push to drag us all to the lowest common denominator in a bid to impose a socialist egalitarian Utopia such as is enjoyed in Venezuela.

Everywhere you turn we seem Hell bent on shooting ourselves in the economic foot, driving even greater wedges between the North and the South; between England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, and our closest allies; undermining the very fundamentals which have kept this Kingdom United, and maintained a relative peace on the Continent of Europe for more than 70 years.

So, this Christmas, pull your loved ones close. Be grateful for the gifts you share. Spare a thought for those worse off than you. Be forgiving of those with whom you disagree. Be outward looking rather than inward and forward looking rather than clinging to the past, except as a place where lessons should have been learned in order to avoid the calamities of the future.

It’s Christmas Time. And, all I want for Christmas is a second People’s Vote and an outbreak of Common Sense.

Have a good one everybody.


December 23, 2018 at 12:28 pm Leave a comment

Lest we forget….

We live in a dangerous time. When superpowers are run by dictators. When the far right is gaining ground across Europe and in Latin America. When pipe bombs are being delivered across the USA and Jews are again slaughtered in their synagogues. In a time when war is but a sound bite on the news, happening somewhere else to someone else. 

We live in a world of Brexit. Of turmoil in Europe, where the very political establishments that have secured relative peace on the continent for some 70 years are being torn down, or are looking the other way.

Now more than ever it is our duty to remember them. Lest we forget. Lest we make the same mistakes again. I wear my poppy for them. I wear it with pride.

My grandad, Albert William Jones, was an engineer and volunteer who landed in Gallipoli on the 5th or 6th May 1915 under heavy artillery, rifle and machine gun fire from the Turkish forces dug in in the heights above the landing beaches. 673 sappers, friends and comrades were lost in that landing. Alone. This was Albert’s welcome to Gallipoli.

The Turks were waiting for Albert and his friends. They had already inflicted heavy losses on the first allied force of British, Anzac and French troops that had landed. Those had been professional soldiers. Albert and his friends were not. This was Albert’s first exposure to an all-out onslaught. Imagine his terror. He was just 21 years old. The Turks were heavily dug in – artillery covering every approach, barbed wire waiting in the shallows and on the beach.

Despite this, a general advance was ordered. The men and boys, many away from home for the very first time, walked into a barrage of machine gun fire. Albert and his fellow sappers were soon thrown into the thick of it, working under the cover of night to reinforce the trenches, but only after clearing the many dead and dying comrades.

Conditions were terrible. Clean drinking water was hard to find. Paradoxically, dirty water lay in abundance just below the surface and trenches would often flood if dug too deep.

Even nature was against them. Sleep was often disturbed by the noise of frogs and the threat of scorpions and tarantulas. These things reminded the young Lancastrians that they were far from home. As did the distant call to the Faithful from the Turkish Immans, every morning and evening. It must have felt very alien to my grandfather. 

British and Indian forces stood their ground for three weeks under constant shelling, machine gun and sniper fire. Many men were killed with head wounds  – the high water table made it difficult to build deep trenches.

Rations consisted of bacon, bully-beef and biscuit with jam and cheese, Maconochie’s vegetables. Not ideal in the heat and arid surroundings. Even downtime was grim and unrewarding.

Ration cases were often broken open and their distasteful contents abandoned – more precious was the wood crate, a source of firewood in a land of cold nights and very few trees. The rifle butts of dead comrades were also a valuable source of kindling. There were many of those. 

At the beginning of June 1915, one whole month after landing, the allies attempted to break out from the beaches. After a heavy bombardment they moved forward en masse. Albert moved with the main force. His primary job was to disconnect mines and reversing captured trenches as the Turks withdrew. 

But, after the collapse of a French attack to the British left, and the failure of inexperienced British naval forces to their right, the Lancastrians were soon forced to retreat, with heavy losses inflicted. 

Trench warfare followed, with Turkish forces launching regular bayonet and bomb (grenade) attacks in an attempt to recapture lost ground. This was hand to hand warfare. The 42nd Division of volunteers, of engineers and miners, of friends and family, of pals, fought without rest for three days and nights to hold off the fierce Turkish counter-attack.

After weeks of stalemate a second push was made in early August. The fighting was fierce. The 42nd Division’s first Victoria Cross was awarded to Lieutenant W. T. Forshaw, who fought off a large group of Turks for two days. He was not the only hero. On 13th August the following Special Order was recorded: “the Division has…..displayed a dash in attack and a spirit of determination and endurance in defence which is worthy of the best traditions of the British Army.”

Casualties had been heavy and the Division was much diminished with few reinforcements arriving from home or from the Empire. Dysentery, jaundice and an epidemic of septic sores did even more damage than the enemy. Water was sparse. Lice fed on the living and flies fed on the dead. Albert was surrounded by death and horror.

New ways of fighting were evolving. The Turks obtained better, German-made artillery which was more powerful, more accurate and more deadly. The Turks deployed aircraft to drop bombs and morale-sapping pamphlets. Both sides resorted to mining each other’s trenches. The Turks also began to use gas. Thankfully the gas was “only” corrosive to the eyes, and not the lungs. And, winter began to set in with heavy rain and occasional frosts. Storms often resulted in severe flooding with many supplies and bivouacs and horses and mules and men being lost. 

On 27th November a particularly bad storm caused much flooding and the trenches were waist high in water. Many men were killed by sniper fire while trying to escape the deluge. The storm included thunder and lightning and soon turned into a snow blizzard. A hard frost followed and many men froze to death or lost limbs to frostbite. 10,000 sick and injured men had to be evacuated. Once the frost abated, all that was left was mud. Across the front line at this time the enemy trenches were never more than 125 yards apart. Albert would spend his waking days staring death in the eyes, a few brief if muddy steps away.

After a visit by Lord Kitchener, the powers decided that the position was hopeless and on 16th December 80,00 men, 5,000 animals, 2,000 vehicles and 200 guns were ordered to be withdrawn from the peninsula. But, Albert and his fellow engineers would be among the last to leave. 

Christmas Day 1915, Albert’s second Christmas away from home in Beeston, consisted of a daylight lull in the fighting and a meal of roast beef, plum-pudding with rum sauce, and a pint of beer for each man. Carols were sung. The fighting was put on hold until but only until the moon rose when a heavy barrage of the enemy lines began. No Silent Night for granddad.

Albert and the 42nds were withdrawn on the 29th December 1915. They had been defeated. They were tired, wet, sick. They were evacuated. 14,000 Lancastrians had landed in Gallipoli in May. Barely 5,000 Lancastrians left some eight long months later despite the number of reinforcements that had arrived during the period.

Lest we forget – 28,200 young men had been killed. 89,349 had been wounded or were missing, with a further 96,683 men submitted to hospital.

This was Albert’s Gallipoli.

But this was not the end of his war. Grandad went on to fight in the Third Battle of Krithia in June 1916 and the battle of Romani in August. Albert fought in the first battle of Gaza in March 1917 and the second battle in April. Albert fought at the Battle of Beersheba.He was part of the force which occupied Jerusalem was occupied in December 1917.

He faced his second defeat in the first Battle of the Jordan in March 1918. And, there were still many battles to be fought. Berukin and the decisive battle of Megiddo (or Armageddon). Albert saw the surrender of Damascus together with Lawrence of Arabia. Albert marched into Constantinople in November 1918.

While we do not know for sure, it is likely that Albert was mentioned in despatches for gallantry as a result of brave action during the Battle of Armageddon, being the last major action he is likely to have seen before the end of the war. The certificate reads as follows: The War of 1914-1918; Royal Engineers, 72094 Spr. [L/C.] A.W. Jones, “N.A”. Cable Sec. was mentioned in a Despatch from General Sir E. H. H. Allenby, G. C. M. G, K. C. B dated 23rd October 1918 for gallantry and distinguished services in the Field. I have it in command from the King to record His Majesty’s high appreciation of the services rendered. 

It is signed by Winston Churchill, Secretary of State for War and dated 1st March 1919.

Lest we forget. I wear my poppy for him. I wear it with pride.

November 7, 2018 at 5:20 pm Leave a comment


Clearly I am much loved by my French work colleagues. So much so that not one of them thought to mention it was a holiday in Paris today.

They didn’t mention it when I sought approval for my travel weeks back. They didn’t mention it when I booked my tickets and they didn’t mention it when I was in the office in Paris on Tuesday (I was in Vienna yesterday).

I discovered it was a holiday in Paris today when I was checking out of my hotel this morning and commented that it was unusual to see so many families at breakfast. Apparently it is because it is a holiday.

The fact that it was a holiday in Paris today was reaffirmed when, on arriving at the office, I found it dark and locked with my pass unable to get me in. I was stood outside like a stranded muppet with a suitcase as locals ambled past enjoying their day off.

So, back in a taxi and off to the airport at 08.00 am for a 4.10 flight on a ticket that cannot be transferred. At least le Peripherique was quieter than last night when I endured a stop go (mostly stop) two hour taxi ride back to my hotel after my trip to Austria. If I was grumpy then, you should see me now….

And, the airport was chaos and very busy. Presumably this was because it is a holiday in France. The queues at security were long, even by the usual French standards. And, I had to endure a full bag search (they found nothing) from a surly security guard who was clearly pissed off that the airport was so busy, and the queues were so long, and because he was at work while everyone else in France was on bloody holiday. Excuse my French….

I even got cursed by a Lebanese guy before security. He approached me and asked if I spoke English. When I said yes he explained that he was from Lebanon. Where they speak French. He explained that he was “in difficulty for the sake of €40”. I told him I had no cash. I lied. He told me he did not believe me. I told him I did not believe him. He then cursed me. Perhaps the bag search was my instant karma…..

So now I have parked my Anglo-Saxon work ethic in the British Airways lounge where it will sit for six hours before my flight. Unless the curse remains. What chance on a delay…


November 1, 2018 at 9:29 am 1 comment

Shopping frustrations….

I’ve just had a very frustrating trip to Waitrose. 

Now some might say that this was a very generous thing for me to volunteer to do on the weekend. A rare two-day sojourn away from the stress and strain of corporate politics and commercial cut and thrust. Especially as tomorrow, weather permitting (and it can be very dangerous to base one’s social life on the whims and unreliability of the percentage chance of precipitation according to the BBC weather app) I will be spending my second “day off” applying Danish oil to our newly installed garden gate and trying to avoid cutting the grass….

But, rather than an act of selfless domestic generosity this was my way of getting out of accompanying C on a Guildford shopping trip. But not just any shopping trip. A shoe shopping trip.

Now, I think I have adequately covered the stress and strains and the different approaches to the procurement of footwear of men versus women in an earlier post. 

So, it was an easy choice. The prospect of eating something other than a Charlie Bigham meatball, the potential for domestic brownie points, and an afternoon on the sofa with Radio 5 versus being dragged around every shoe shop in Guildford, some more than once.

But, I must admit that my own shopping trip to Waitrose Dorking was a tad frustrating….

It was a glum Autumnal morning in the Surrey Hills. It was drizzling. It was foggy. It was dark. And, the leaves were beginning to drop. And yet the sunken lanes were still awash with MAMILS on a mission to block all other forms of traffic. These cyclists were apparently on a suicide mission, confident in their ownership of the road, dressed in materials that would put a stealth bomber to shame, like black-clad ninja in phallus-shaped helmets AND NO BLOODY LIGHTS. Causing havoc on the single track, sunken lanes, in the depth of the Surrey Hills forests. 

And, if I wasn’t avoiding suicidal, spatially unaware cyclists, I was avoiding suicidal, spatially unaware Landrover Discoverys “driven” by peroxide blonde, sunglasses-wearing (see earlier description of climatic conditions) with the road awareness of an out of control horsebox intent on cleansing the world of the scourge of black-clad idiots on bicycles.

But I made it to Dorking Waitrose without a traffic incident. No MAMILS were hurt in the making of this blog.

But, my frustrations did not stop there. There was one old lady……one old lady clearly beyond working age and, therefore, with no good excuse to be out shopping on a weekend, who was even more challenged in the spatial -awareness spectrum than your average middle-aged cyclist or female Discovery driver. 

She insisted on misdirecting her trolley against the established norm of shopping flow and blocking the aisles by parking said trolley at 90 degrees to the rows of produce. I “bumped” against her on 3 or 4 separate occasions. My pleas of “excuse me” were met with a vacant stare. These pinch points were particularly bad around the pet food, pharmacy, tinned soup, and Baileys sections.

On one occasion I was pleased to help another vertically challenged southern pensioner who asked me to pass her a jar of sun-dried tomatoes off the top shelf. 

This brought back fond memories of Pies and Prejudice in the days when I was a proud Northerner, but only to,the point that I realised that this item was immediately next to the jar of chargrilled peppers that were an essential part of my chicken fennel ragout (my Charlie Bigham alternative). I am assimilating. I was then somewhat surprised when she was joined by her seven-foot tall husband. Surely, I am not of the age that I am being hit upon by vertically challenged Southern pensioners….

I was further frustrated by the unavailability of lamb gravy. But pleasantly surprised by the choice of key ingredients for tomorrow’s brunch, inspired by the Danny Baker Sausage Sandwich Game I had listened to on the car radio on the way in.

But, I was absolutely horrified by the number of people piling their trolleys high with pumpkins – we were a whole three weeks away from the festival of Hallowe’en – and the conglomeration of senior citizens looking for bargains around the Christmas Bakery section. It’s October…..and the weekend.

Maybe I am just feeling the side-effects of Stoptober. Five days free of alcohol and counting….

C isn’t back yet.

October 6, 2018 at 12:43 pm 1 comment

Off to university…..

A few days ago C and I were in the Nespresso shop in the swanky new Tunsgate Centre in Guildford. We were buying our stock of Vivalto Lungo before heading up to the Ivy for a spot of brunch. We are so Surrey Hills these days….

While we were in the coffee shop I noticed a couple of young people looking at coffee machines to buy and it suddenly dawned on me that this was Generation Z, getting ready to go off to university in just a few weeks.

And watching these bright, yellow, young things preparing to temporarily leave home (they will be back….until their mid-thirties at least) it dawned on me how much my life had changed since being a pale-faced and pimply 18 year old freshman on his way up to the Queen’s College, Oxford all those generations ago. And, how different the experience of going to university might be for this current wave of early starters with their high expectations, digital footprints, social media followings, and, Nespresso machines.

In 1984 I was packed off to university with a duvet, a kettle, two mugs, two plates, two bowls, cutlery for two, two glasses (all acquired from Lakeland) and a rather damning insight into my parents’ expectations of me making any friends. I went with four A levels, a full state grant, a college scholarship, a housing allowance, one brand new and tailored suit (my first and my last) for formal dinners, and a knot in the pit of my stomach. I was scared and lacking confidence. Young, immature, and naive.

Generation Z heads off with their smartphones and laptops, wearing oversize, gender-neutral athleisure wear with a sneer at those clinging to the Abercrombie & Fitch and Gap of their Millennial parents and elder siblings. I had gone off with a top-loading CD player (I’ve always been an early adopter), a complete secondhand set of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire and instructions to phone home every Sunday. 

Back in my day the public school sneer had been reserved for my denim and donkey jackets, my blue jeans and trainers, which betrayed working-class roots and solidarity with the striking miners, in a world full of tweed jackets, corduroy trousers and shiny Oxford brogues. My white socks and accent betrayed me as being from Birmingham in a world full of Price Charles voices from Ampleforth, Pocklington and Eton.

The world is very different now. At eighteen I was thrown into an older, ancient world of wood-panelling, privilege, initiation ceremonies, beer, hand-written essays, books from libraries, beer, the loss of virginity, sweaty bops and kebabs on a Friday night, and a cold, cold toilet at the bottom of a fourteenth century stone staircase. We stood under the gaze of paintings and statues celebrating our racist, colonial, imperial past without any guilt, fury, or protest. Protest was reserved for Margaret Thatcher. We were all too worried about avoiding AIDS  and nuclear annihilation to be tearing down statues or being offended.

But in many ways I think it was an easier time than that awaiting the new student intake, Snapchatting its way through digital references, expecting to be treated like an individual, demanding value for money in return for their student debt, and safe in the knowledge that they are going to change the world……and go home to mom and dad.

I wish them all the very best. But, I also hope that, as I did, they leave in three or four years time with the best friends in the world, having got laid, and maybe, with an appreciation of beer…..

Oh, and a degree.

August 29, 2018 at 5:04 pm Leave a comment

Baby, it’s hot outside….


Baby, it’s hot outside. 

And, England struggles in that heat amid a shortage of lettuce and CO2, which is causing our supply of crumpets and lager to run out. The Mail is blaming Johnny Foreigner and immigrants bringing their hot-weather ways with them, while Boris is promising there will be bumper crops of Iceberg and bubbles once we have Brexited. 

We are awash with warnings not to lock our pets in cars or to walk them on hot pavements. Indeed, we are advised not to venture outside at all without the benefit of factor 50, a gallon (a good post-Brexit measure) of still spa water, and a floppy hat.

To be fair it’s not because of a CO2 shortage that the lager is running out but because people are drinking it, at alarming rates. Driven not by a collective anguish due to the lack of a crumpet or midget gem, but by the absolute certainty that England is going to win the World Cup now that Germany, Argentina, and Spain have all crashed out. 

Our village greens have become village browns as hosepipe bans abound. Red-faced Morris dancers drag themselves wearily around the maypole in a vain attempt to summon some ancient pagan god of rainfall and cricket. And, we are all encouraged to shower only once a week, preferably sharing with a good friend or neighbour. 

As a result, the air is heady with the aroma of deodorant and dry shampoo and the neighbours have gone underground, hidden away behind heavy curtains to block the sunlight and huddled around their Dyson Hot and Cold or sitting in the light of an open freezer door.

A plague of horseflies of almost biblical proportions threatens to wheedle out the weakest of us that dare to venture out in between football matches in search of more lager, Green and Black Belgian White Chocolate ice cream (this is the Surrey Hills, darling), Pimms, and absolutely anything to throw on the barbecue. 

At least Murray has done the decent thing and retired ahead of Wimbledon starting. So, we are spared the constant reference to his Mound and whether he has the bottle for it. And, there should, at least, be enough strawberries to go round. And, we’ve already trounced those cheating Aussies at the cricket. (Don’t mention the rugby).So, all we have to stress ourselves about now is whether the football team has been practicing their penalties and Harry Kane’s fitness.

Well that is not ALL we have to worry about. The hot air, combined with the lager and the stress of the football is causing tensions and domestic violence to rise. 

There are demonstrations every weekend for and against this and that. And, that twat Trump is visiting next week to play golf with the Queen. Some are predicting riots in the street.

And there is an infestation of Mamils (middle aged men in Lycra) taking advantage of the long dry days to abandon their children and dog-walking duties, to take to their peddle bikes to slow traffic, and to terrify pedestrians and walkers while eating flap jack and drinking real ale (no CO2 required) while having conversations about how real men play rugby, shave their legs and vasolene their intimate bits. 

And yet, if you listen very carefully, amid the sound of hot birdies panting in the arid hedgerows, and the faint sound of horseflies gently sucking the blood of some unfortunate that fainted on the way to Waitrose, you can hear a quite murmur slowly growing in volume and building in intensity – “It’s coming home. It’s coming. Football’s coming home…….”

NB. This blog was written ahead of England’s game against Colombia. If we lost, especially if we lost on penalties, please ignore the above but still feel free to vent your fury when Trump arrives or whenever Boris stands in front of another bloody bus. 

Fifty two years of hurt. But there’s always Qatar…..

July 2, 2018 at 5:46 pm Leave a comment

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