Friday, June 20, 2003

I have a dilemma. I have so much personal stuff to blog I don't know which blog to stick it on. As this one is much easier than the other this one will get more than the other, so if you are looking for daft links, well, later dude.

My work this week has been more stressful than I have ever known, and I have been in the game for more than 20 years. I won't go on about it here. I have another blog for that shit, but it's pertinent to what follows.

We are soft sods in my game, we don't get overtime but routinely start early, finish late and work through dinners. In fact we don't have dinner hours, we stop and eat but thats it and we usually work between mouthfuls. I say we all, but those who see my other blog won't take that as the literal truth, obviously.

The advantage is, though, we are always owed time (some of us legitimately) so I took today the fuck off.

Got up the usual time and got the train to Cardiff.. nice espresso, nice langorous haircut, mooch around the book and record shops, Yankees hat for the nipper. It was like I had a week off and it was barely past mid morning. Got a whole 69 p off Willards first book because of the battered cover, spent a fortune on sundry shit, including a half pound of Santos and Java coffee. And I thought retail therapy was for girls.

I arranged to meet the Mrs outside Waterstones at 12.30, the intention being we would have a little mooch and take the 2 that ain't in school down Cardiff Bay for an ice cream.

Cardiff Bay was buzzing. Beautiful hot sunshine and every bar and cafe abuzz. Unbelievably, nipper number 3 fell asleep between the car park and the bay. I cannot tell you what a result that was.

We headed straight for the Bosphorous, which is a Turkish joint ( I wish! ) which juts out on a pier like edifice into the water. Boardwalk up to the restaurant but tables all around, and one was free. We sat there listening to the waves and the hubbub of conversation, taking the smells of grilled food in. I swear it didnt take much imagination to take yourself away, especially as we were surronde by Spaniards.

We had one of those do's where they just keep bringing loads of small but beautifully prepared dishes. It being lunchtime and this being an unexpected pleasure I went for the house wine, which was actually very good. 8 quid for some Turkish thing which was much better value than the 20 quid I spent on a Pinot Grigio in Topo Gigoo last week.

A good day then. The daughter was present through all this and behaved herself beautifully and scoffed sophisticatedly. Number 3 slept all through it. The sun shone.

Travelled home, picked number one up, and his mate from school. Stuck myself in the garden. Put some music on, loud but quiet. You could hear it on our patio, but not on our lawn. It was ok for about 2 hours.

Mrs Buddha took the pal home about 6 and I reflected what a glorious day it had been and what a lucky sod I am, pissed by now, obviously. I further reflected that this little idyll would inevitably end, sooner rather than later, and it did.

I have said before, I have social housing to my immediate left, and posh housing to my right. The truth is I hate the lot of them. As I said last year though, it is only the fat, wobbly bastards from the social housing who drive me inside and stop me enjoying a pleasant summers evening in the garden.
By 6.30 tonight the Clampitts were at it. The worst is their music is crap and the system they play it on is nasty, and it gets louder as the night goes on. The fat fuckers have no class.

So while I had some Dexys on, sinking some lager or other, a generic eurobeat just took over everything. It is like some cheap Aldi soundsystem, turned up high, very nasty, worse than nails down a blackboard in terms of sound quality. And they stick on it the modern equivalent of those MUSIC FOR PLEASURE LP's you used to get from Woolworth. All the hits, but it wasn't till you got home and read the small print that you realised the music was not by original artists, but by the Swingle Sisters less tuneful sisters.

It's been a grand day, but check the neighborhood before you buy a house!
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