Today I’ve been

Struggling:

To get out of bed at 04.15

To get out of the house before 05.30

Through the occasionally heavy, squally showers

To battle my way down the M42, M6, M1, M25, M11, A12 and A13

To believe that some of my fellow drivers of cars, vans and HGVs could have ever got a legitimate driving licence.

And surprisingly (or not surprisingly)…

Not struggling at all to:

Get things done

Keep interest high during a day of almost back-to-back meetings

Continue to be fascinated by my fellow man and woman

Finish work at 19.00

Drive back to Brixton

Do a little emergency shopping in Tesco

Prepare food, cook, eat, do washing up

Speak to The Lovely S

Fall in to bed at 21.20

Now planning to:

Read for as long as I can stay awake (I have a New Book, oh yes!)

Sleep

Brennig.

Nemesis

So Meesstair Bond Jones, we meet again.

My arch-enemyâ’s implacable bulk loomed immovably in front of me.

Actually I’m not sure if ‘loomed’ is the right word in this context.

The Bricklayers Arms, south London.

Let me explain.

I left Docklands yesterday evening at about 18.30.

And arrived in the house in Brixton at 20.10.

Yep, it took over an hour and a half to travel thirteen miles.

Or…

At 19.45 I was still only a hundred yards north of The Bricklayers Arms.

Staring at it.

The journey took so long my imagination kicked in.

It almost seemed to be taunting me, The Bricklayers Arms.

Its lip-curling sneer dared me to crawl another half metre further forward.

Suddenly its character changed from Blofeld to Harry (of the Dirty variety).

Think you can make it punk? Think you can get another handful of centimetres further forward, do ya? Go ahead and try punk. Make my day.

I looked around at the other road users and wondered if they too were having hallucinations.

The girl in the Porsche next to me seemed intent on collecting three points for nattering in to her mobile phone whilst at the wheel of the car.

She also spurned her compulsory seat belt.

I mentally composed a new public message seat belt campaign:
Notice to drivers, the penalty for not wearing your seat belt is deathâ’ – accompanied by a suitably gory picture.

Bit too hard core do you think?

The driver of the Lithuanian-registered builders van behind me picked his nose and flicked ash in to the lap of the motorcyclist; shoe-horned between the van and a traffic bollard the motorcyclist brushed the ash from his lap, raised his visor and shouted ‘Oi!’

The van driver either didnâ’t speak English or chose to ignore the motorcyclist’s existence.

I wondered if the Lituanian-registered van had any insurance.

It was an interesting spell of people-observation but I really could have been more productive.

Over an hour and a half!

Thirteen miles?

Welcome to 21st century London, folks.

Dedicated to the one I love

So.
 
I’ve been thinking.

It’s your birthday on Friday 29th June and you’ve cunningly taken that day and the next off.

And you’re going to come down to London village on Wednesday 27th June after work.
 
Thought 1:
I’m going to buy your ticket. Please don’t argue. Call it a treat. I’ll book it on-line and get it sent to the house.
 
NB to self… remind me to remind me to flippin’ well remind me (because I absolutely MUST NOT FORGET) to bring a birthday present or two and a card that might be roaming around the house down to London at the start of next week!
 
Thought 2:
It’s going to be lateish when you arrive at the London village train station. I’ll pick you up in the car. But because it’s going to be late I suggest we don’t go out Wednesday night; I’ll cook for us in Brixton (somewhere, out in the street, in someone’s car, haven’t decided where to cook yet).
 
Thought 3:
I’m working on Thursday; you’ll be fine in the house with Pete and/or Shane. I’m sorry that the shower-room is a building site. Blame Shane. I do. But the bathroom upstairs is very spacious and functional.
 
Thought 4:
If you want to meet for lunch on Thursday that would be nice, but as Thursday is your birthday there’s no pressure, just chill and enjoy yourself.
 
Thought 5:
After work we could be really daring and go out for the evening? Perhaps the West End? Or do you want to meet up with Sammi and/or any of your other London-based friends? Sorry, I’ve had another thought (let’s call it Thought 5b) – the upshot is we’re going out; it’s booked.
 
Thought 6:
Friday, I’m working again but will finish about 13.30 after which we can enjoy each other’s company on the Long March Home (to almost quote Mao Tse Tung).  We’ll probably get home between 16.00-17.00 depending on traffic and toilet breaks.
 
Thought 7:
Saturday, I’m not competing so we can spend the day together if you like? Potter around, do a bit of shopping in the morning?. The only thing on our calendar is that we have to be at a place an hour’s drive away from home for the early evening. Oh. Didn’t I tell you this?  Sorry. Perhaps we could nip off and see the boys around late morning then take a slow drive to our destination, stopping for lunch en-route, before we get to the thing?
 
Thought 8:
Sunday, no plans there either. Spend the day with me? Please? Except… if the weather’s nice perhaps we might pop down to Gloucestershire for a thing?