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29 Aug 2009

Post 151: Hearing from old friends and sticking it to the Aussies

Gosh, where to start?
This weeks mixed metaphor is actually more than just a vanilla mixed metaphor, so much so, I don't even know how to describe it, it is a genius play on words and is a quality innuendo
courtesy of one of my old clubbing friends Annabel and was produced by my request for your very best mixed metaphors on facebook and what a gem it yielded:
'A hand in the bird is worth two in the bush',
'Ooo-er' indeed, God knows what the original expression even means?!
Anyway, my first order of business is something I had forgotten to mention in my last post, it was the fact that last weeks wedding was made even more enjoyable by the fact that Megan is Australian, and that there were plenty of Aussies at the wedding. Fine, we may not have won the Ashes by then but the wedding was at the same time their batting collapsed so by toast time, things were looking dicey for the Aussies and we sure as hell have won them now! In fact my best mate Tony was lucky enough to come straight from the Oval to yet another glorious Prom concert
at the Albert Hall which I had organised to go to with Tony and girlfriend Kate and my great friend from College, The Revd Richard Lloyd and his lovely fiancee Vicky and of course my parents,
who I try and take out as much as possible as a mark of gratitude for all the help and support they have given me all my life, since my stroke I couldn't have asked them for anything more. I have not always been the easiest son but they have dealt with my many foibles, particularly as a little brat and when I have been less than charming since my stroke. Many would have crumbled under the enormous strains of the last few years but they are not the Australians, who have often been known for their humility,
their progressive political thinking,
their level temperament
and their ability to be philosophical in adversity, I'll stop there as I'm in danger of being as sarcastic as the 'Dave' 'Speckled Hen' fox.
They have taken it predictably well, but I remember on the Friday the Aussie guests looking Ashen faced (see what I did there) and virtually refusing to speak. Despite this improvement. It was difficult not to remember sitting near some Aussies in the day 4 Oval crowd in 2005. It was a nightmare. Every time we were doing well it was 'luck' or we were 'cheating' and every time they were doing well it was good old fashioned Aussie 'grit'.
This has always been their attitude and doubtless I'm a 'whingeing Pom' for saying so. I frankly couldn't give a rats ass your honour. This is why winning the ashes is so sweet, it takes away their bragging rights
While I'm on the subject of cricket, I got visited this week by an old schoolmate of mine called Jon Bond
(the only picture I could rustle up), the tenuous link is that he was wicket keeper for the first team at school 2 years early (which is a big deal), he's obviously from a fairly talented family because his sister Annabelle has been in all the papers recently for climbing the five highest mountains on five continents,
a pretty amazing feat, oh, and his Dad sir John Bond
is current chairman of Vodafone, once the Worlds biggest company. Anyway, despite the laugh we had at school we went our separate ways and hadn't seen each other for 15 years. A mutual friend (Rosie) tracked him down and out of the blue I got an email from him saying he was keen to visit on Friday. This was a turn up for the books, the last time I had seen Jon, he had been this tall, dark, good looking, charming, full of chat bloke, going on nothing more than the tone of his email,I surmised this was still the case. It was the right call and we chatted about old times till the cows had come home to roost (about 2 hours which is a long time for me) and I have already resolved to fix him up with the most gorgeous single girl I know (after being sure I stood no chance of course). This can be my latest project which I sincerely hope I haven't doomed by mentioning it here!
The other great news I had this week was getting back in touch with Derek (via email, well he is in Sweden). About 3 and a half years ago when I was still an inpatient in the Transitional Living Unit (TLU) at Putney Hospital Derek was the Glaswegian Male Nurse that once made me laugh so much, tea came out of my nose. Now at that time I was properly depressed and thinking back Derek (or Del) or as I later called him Delvis was probably the main reason I wasn't suicidal. It was a tough time made bearable by reciting lines with him from trainspotting.
'It's sh*te being Scottish' particularly makes me laugh, when he left the TLU to be with his girlfriend in Sweden was a dark day for me, I might have even cried, so being in touch with him again is great news (plus he now has a 17 month old son) as it is being in touch with Bondie again and to cap it all off I was visited this very morning by a couple of old mates from Uni, Neil
and Alex (together with cute little daughter Lily who he had last brought down here when she was a week old and tiny)
here are the exact words I wrote in response to a facebook message I got from Neil afterwards 'Mate, it was an absolute pleasure and thanks for your kind words. I can't actually believe that two loose cannons like you and Dabbous are now grown up responsible family men, I'm so impressed and envious! Thanks for the pics, Maya is an Angel. I'll get in touch with Laila.
Thanks for coming to see me this morning, it's so good for my spirits (which often can get very low).'
the other good news is that Illona and Mariusz (the couple renting a room) have bravely opted to take on the role of my carer in return for a cut in rent. Gawd bless 'em, this is a huge weight off my mind! Also, I've got a new walking video to upload (of me walking with Ian and just a crutch) once I've got it shrunk I'll post it up.

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