Listening to: Brand New Bass Guitar (Jamie T)
Thinking about: leaving the house
Questioning: the advisability of late-night steak pie (homemade though)
Weather: dull and grey
We didn't go to the leaving do (long story, sorry Dave), we didn't go anywhere near a vodka bar, we didn't eat curry or anything takeawayable.
So why do I feel so dreadful?
Reg had his pinny on last night, tatting around in the kitchen like Delia with a drink problem. Steak pie was prepared with all the veggies, but first we had some drinking to do.
We ended up in Reg's local. It used to be a decent pub yonks ago, but now it's a faceless part of a corporate chain. On Thursday and Friday nights it becomes a cattle market for desperate over-40s, so we fitted in nicely.
After a couple of jars, we decided to move on - just as a heavily made-up 60-year-old in a ra-ra skirt was preparing a bungee jump at Reg. She might have been looking at me, but if she was, she'd got a squint.
Half-a-mile down the road another former decent boozer is now a cold, uncomfortable 'gastro-pub', but we made the best of things, the chat ranging from the Daily Mail and its support for the Third Reich to first loves, virginity and so on.
Just as supping up time came, we ran into a very nice couple who Reg knows from the best pub in the world. I had to have the 'Orkney conversation'. That's the trouble when you do something a little out of the ordinary, everybody wants to know about it. The attention is good, but there are times when I feel like handing out a Press release.
Back at Pither Towers we agreed we should have spent the evening at the aforementioned 'best pub in the world', then got into a plateful of pie (this being midnight). Mrs Pither poured the wine (ah! that might explain things) and we chatted 'til late.
I've only just emerged (the Pithers having gone to work at the crack of dawn) and I'm writing this with my 'nephew' Padfoot lying by my feet. Regular readers of Grantham Newtown will know Pad is not a well boy at all and there seems to be little anyone can do. He's terribly thin and there's a look of acceptance in his eyes. I'm gutted for the lad.
Pad has, in his time, been a 'bit of a character'. When he could stand on his back legs alone he was as tall as me (sort of 6ft) and liked to put his front paws on my shoulders, barking loudly.
He also liked to hold Uncle Malc's hand. Standing there with you hand being held ever so delicately in the jaws of a huge, very hairy, jumpy Alsatian is quite an experience.
Still, he's warm and very well cared for and I'll give him a hug before I go. Sad, really sad.
* Reading this back, I realise some of it may confuse American readers. Maybe I should do a US/Canada version. In the mean-time, here are a few translations.
Pinny = apron. Tatting = doing small jobs of little consequence. Delia = Delia Smith, TV cook and (strangely) chairman of Norwich City Football (soccer) Club. Drink problem = what British people have to blot out the disappointment of losing an Empire and not being terribly good at sport. Yonks = when Reg was a lad. Boozer = pub. Virginity = a rarity in Wolverhampton.