Wednesday, April 11, 2007

What I did on my holidays: got drunk mostly. And threw sticks down a very steep hill for my parents’ ridiculously over-excited dog while my mum and I sat down and soaked up spring sun.

Last week I went on holiday to Brighton sort of by accident as I’d got fed up of thinking up fun things to do and failing, and so instructed someone else to do it instead. Skirting past the surprise grannies and our general poverty it was utterly, utterly wonderful. Why haven’t I been to Brighton before? Well it’s quite far away, and I have one a bit nearer. A beach, not a Brighton. Brighton is amazing.

I drank Champagne on the beach, sifting the pebbles with my feet. I went paddling, and soon regretted that fact once the charm had worn off and I had to hobble back up cascading stones to my cigarettes. I ate a whelk (or a cockle, they both look like sticky sponge) and it wasn’t disgusting. I bought ice cream off a French man, and walked along the beachfront at night. I was spun around like a gangly carousel, and drank Old Orleans cocktails like I did when I was 17.

It was brilliant.

Later that week I got very, very drunk. Childishly, university drunk, the sort of drunk where you play pool at 3 in the afternoon and can barely see to do so because someone called Harry has just given you sambuca. I even had cocktails, bonding with my brother’s housemate in a ludicrously over-priced faux-Indian bar called Mint Leaf run almost exclusively by thickly-tongued Russians. We discussed the seemingly endless merits of Jilly Cooper and decided that Wicked was probably a recycling too far. There’s only so much sex you can have where you plunge in joyous as an otter, and seeing as Rupert Campbell-Black is pushing 60 I very much doubt he’s still Mecca to most women. Gold diggers, probably.

Falling back to Hampshire, my brother and I had a drink in the eye-gougingly awful Reef bar at Waterloo. If you haven’t had the misfortune of being drunk and thus unable to spend half an hour in Smiths instead, Reef is the sort of place where alcoholics get priests to bless their gin beforehand in case of unwanted reprisals from the dark side.

Peering over the balcony I saw Camilla Batman-Ghelidja below: she’s fairly impossible to miss because she generally wears a colourful kaftan and matching turban. She is also one of my very few dead cert heroes. I flung myself down the stairs and went starstruck. She was lovely and said “wicked” (Jilly would be proud and probably put her in her next book verbatim). I went back upstairs in a total haze and spent the next ten minutes trying to explain to my brother why that was probably the coolest thing that would happen to me this year.

I have no idea how to pronounce Ghelidja, so isn’t it rather wonderful that today’s Mother Theresa is basically Camilla Batman?

Let us now play the first line of article Kat is writing game.

“Until last week I thought that the most exciting thing that would happen to me and a lift would be if the Diet Coke man stepped out of it. How wrong I was!”

Guess what comes next. I dare you. Clue: it doesn’t involve sex or the Diet Coke man.

It’s a bit odd to be at a new job now, having been somewhere else for two years. Sort of lonely. Still, nothing the Edith Piaf film and a trip to Patrick Wolf can’t temporarily sellotape together.

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