It’s Sunday morning and I’m having a l’Oreal moment. I’m worth it.
All my important people are away in different places and what I’d really, really like is a big, ugly, old-fashioned fried breakfast, with rashers and sausages, eggs, black ‘n’ white pudding, a pot of tea and some toast, preferably with marmalade just to be completely decadent.
What could be better than one of my favourite establishments, run by some of my favourite people? I pack my book and I’m off for a relaxed Sunday-morning read. Let’s go! Unfortunately, I choose the precise moment when our new tropical climate decides to unleash a billion gallons of water out of the sky, followed by bright sunshine, so I’m soaked but it’s ok. This is warm rain, just as it has been, ever since we towed Ireland to Florida about a month ago.
Great news. The window seat is unoccupied, the place is quiet. I’ll be able to spend a nice relaxed hour here reading, enjoying my decadent breakfast and — WELL THE KID!!!!
A bald tattooed imbecile is invading my space. WELL KID!!! YOU FORGOT TO DRY YOUR HAIR. His friends are laughing.
Why don’t you go out and get your hair wet too? It’s a limp retort but the best I can think of, and it seems to be the height of razor-sharp repartee in his world because his friends are laughing at him.
My breakfast arrives but already I’m not enjoying it. Mister Bald Half-Wit has an extremely loud voice, even though the place is empty. I try to tune him out, but it’s no good. I read the same line over and over half a dozen times while the background noise level rises. What’s this? It seems to be about a hundred tourists, all standing around with that strange perplexed tourist look on their faces as they examine every last detail of the place. Look, a floor!
Baldfool is all over them like a cheap suit. Despite the tourist chatter, I can hear him grilling the visitors.
Parlyvoo Francy? Eye-taliano? Sprinken see Dutch?
No no no no, they tell him. Español .
I’m just back from Alley-canty, he shouts at an obviously polite but bewildered Spanish girl. Alley-canty. Ah veeva Hispania!! Wa-hay!
Jesus. Would it be legal to just stand up and slaughter this fool with my butter knife? No court in the land would convict me, but instead, I try to tune him out and go back to my book, a futile effort.
WHEN THE MOON HITS YOUR EYE LIKE A BIG PIZZA PIE.
Remember those breathing exercises. Chill. Calm down. Forget about the delicious marmalade on toast. Forget that tantalising pot of tea and relishing a delicious breakfast on a chilled Sunday morning. There are bigger things.
As I push my way past, the hapless tourist catches my eye and I shrug, half in apology that people such as this live in my city, but the fool is not my responsibility.
He has his arm around the man’s shoulder and he’s singing THAT’S AMORE. To a Spaniard.
I’m outta here.