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Saturday, 13 June 2009

UNTITLED

It's the Queen's birthday today or one of them. If she can have two then so can I. Rather than sit and watch The Irish and Coldstream Guards and listen to When Irish Eyes are Smiling I treated myself to a bottle or two of some unknown beverage that has taken my fancy ever since I spied someone drinking it on the terrace the other day. Apart from wine, red drinks don't often appeal but this one hits the spot. A lot of wining and dining has been going on in the last few weeks and coffee mornings might be on the agenda now that I have the time. This kind of behaviour doesn't go unnoticed by the locals most of whom think if you teach, you now have three months off with pay. They have no idea of my Cassandra instinct for the gee-gees or that you can place bets on the internet. Long may they remain in ignorance.

To give an idea of the time warp I live in I saw a dog on a string the other day. Homeopathy, now regarded as a pseudo science in Britain has just arrived and is on sale at the 'with my money' chemist's. The man with the special flute and knife sharpening skills who wheels his bike up and down the street is a refreshing change and reminds me of my childhood when gypsies were the norm and all sorts of characters could be seen around the London streets. The little gypsy girl who asked me about the dead bird seems to have taken an interest in or a shine to me and always says hello and has a chat. Whilst out with Henderson who is proud of his Romany ancestry a fellow gypsy greeted him as if they knew each other from time.

A complete change from all this happened yesterday when I found myself in a barrio which made me feel as though I were in a David Hockney painting. The painting in question is called A Bigger Splash and I had been invited to a private swimming pool where the houses seemed Californian and the sky vast and blue. When I left this place I felt I had been on a retreat even though I didn't actually leave the town.

Briefly, while Tehran gives birth to angry young men, the editor of Vogue gets angry over size zero models, a new word appears in English every 98 seconds, Canada used to border with Zimbabwe, Huesca has a 'dispute' over who can come up with the best beef sarnie. So much so that ten bars will compete to see who can come up with the tastiest. Watch this space.

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