It was stupid o’clock in the morning on a drizzly Tuesday at Manchester airport. I was about to leave my dad behind in Costa Coffee to set off on a trip around the world to Guatemala and I was expecting to hear some words of encouragement, something along the lines of how proud he was of me but instead his last words were saying how he liked my girlfriend.
Its no lie to say my parents have a soft spot softer than the Pillsbury Dough Man's Belly for Alex whereas I often feel like my role in the family is more that of a happy inconvenience.
It had been an interesting week, I had passed my driving test in a ride described by the examiner as “a shambolic drive”. I had proved that I hardly ever use my mirrors by not noticing my left mirror was actually facing the ground during the test and also driving most of the test in first and second gear, to make sure you are being careful, is also a no no. Saying that a pass is a pass, so in your face 93 bus, I wont be getting you again in a hurry.
The bible speaks of Jesus return : “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.”
Which basically sums up the 93 bus service, in fact if Jesus really wants to keep the Nostradamus’s of the world on their toes he should plan to make his second coming on the 93 bus!
After passing my driving test I headed to London town to see my best mate Jez. Jez is a legend he can make you feel calm when you are stressed, happy when you are sad and his speciality is he can make you very drunk very quick!
It was just a fleeting visit to say hi before I went to Guatemala. We decided to go to the pub on the corner near his new house that he hadn’t tried yet called the Toulouse Le Trec, somewhat seduced by the sign on the door informing us that tonight's entertainment would be a foursome who came 4th in France’s Pop Idol 2008, we headed upstairs.
The band hadn’t arrived yet and instead we were serenaded by the musical styling's of one bloke with a gravelly New York-Esq singing voice, struggling his way through Mr Bojangles! It was only after his third attempt at requests we noticed he couldn’t actually play anything other than Mr Bojangles. He would instead play the first three notes of song stop playing, sing the first couple of lines of the song then start talking about something irrelevant.
It was like watching Rowlf from the Muppet's having a breakdown in front of our very eyes. Things were deteriorating for the bloke rapidly and when the bar explained that the French Pop Idol band had pulled out at last minute and the only bloke they could get at such short notice was this guy, who apparently hadn’t slept for 42 hours and who was now throwing birthday cake into his piano, telling people to f**k off and had a glazed expression of someone who got kicks out of human sacrifices, we decided to retire to the flat for a session of Mario kart!
There must be something in the old water supply round that neck of the woods because the next night we were introduced to Jez’s new neighbour. I could go into great depths explaining what happened in the next half an hour of my life but the best way to some up what it was like meeting the new neighbour is to just watch this video:
As I said it was a fleeting visit to see Jez, but much needed as I was getting pretty stressed and worked up about my impending trip to Guatemala.
I headed from London to Sheffield to see Alex before my trip and before I knew it I was sat in Manchester Airport with my dad having a Costa Coffee before leaving him and everyone behind to head to the unknown land of Guatemala.
Coming soon Part 2 - this sort of thing only happens to Steve Martin.