Well we’ve just been over to Italy for an end-of-season break. I’ve got several frustrating stories to re-tell involving online access (ha!), car rental pain and the damage caused to our home by our so-called guests. Sigh. I’ve got a lulu of a story concerning an eggcup for you but that’s an uovo posting for a nuovo night. Truth be told we needed a break and the weather was lovely, we had a great time catching up with our neighbours and friends and we got such a lot of work done on the place whilst relaxing too. As ever we’d slotted into the Italian lifestyle so easily and, despite all the frustrations, by the end it was hard to snap out of it and head back to the UK. To be honest if I were to take our beloved family and few closest friends (and the work of course) out of the equation, I’d have real difficulty saying where I felt most relaxed and naturally at home now; here or Italy. Anyway we’re back and I’m desperately trying to find the time to catch up on my blogging. Tonight’s theme; people, more especially their odd behaviour.
Regular readers will know how I take great delight in observing the smallest personal quirks. I seem to have a peculiar radar for picking up slightly unusual mannerisms and inexplicable behaviour. I can’t help it. Earlier this week I was staring out of the window at my son-in-law’s office when I noticed an older couple peering through the railings of the Wellington barracks opposite. There’s just some garden space beyond so I wondered what they were looking at, perhaps a squirrel I thought. Then the guy reached inside and pulled something out. It was a discarded plastic bottle. He turned and handed it to his wife who popped it into the plastic bag she was carrying. I followed them for a good few minutes as they moved along the railings extracting bits of reachable paper and plastic detritus and re-depositing them in their collection bags. They were on a personal mission to clean up Buckingham Gate and the surrounding area. Did they see themselves as vigilante refuse superheroes? Heaven only knows. They’re no doubt thoughtful and proud citizens but I couldn’t help thinking quite eccentric if not batty at the same time. Perhaps they spend all their days just clearing up the stuff that the regular street cleaners miss. Imagine their conversations at home …’not a bad tally this morning love; 26 coke bottles, 12 fag packets, 6 Walkers crisps packets (including the quite rare Salt n’ Lineker variety), a pair of non-matching flip flops and a slightly perished baby’s dummy. Ooh that’s a nice haul darling’. Decent folks but odd don’t you think?
Then this morning I was following a young woman as I headed to the train station in Teddington. Just before I crossed the busy street to take me down Station Rd the woman stopped at a bench where a young guy was seated and I couldn’t help but overhear her ask him if he could direct her to Teddington Police Station. He looked a little bemused. Not surprising really. Tonight I returned with my camera to the very scene which is shown below…
That’s the bench at which he was sat. Now I don’t want to sound like a smart-arse but I wonder if you can guess from the scene where the police station might be located? Perhaps along the High St? If only there’d been a directional clue for her like a distinctive blue lamp or an above-door sign. I swear this is true. She was clearly English-speaking and there was no guide dog. It’s not like the building was small and hidden – here’s a shot of the place from a wider angle….
How could she not notice this brutal slab of a building? It virtually screams suburban police station. Do you ever wonder how some people get through life? I do worry about these things. In fact I was sat on the train 10 minutes later and still thinking to myself, what if she’s a stand-up comedienne who relies on observational humour to make a living. Could be a short career. It does make me wonder how some people make their way through life.
And then my eyes alighted on a small feature in this morning’s Metro newspaper which confirmed that thought….
I don’t know if you can read this but it’s basically about some acutely body-conscious Chinese bloke who sat in a bath full of eels (presumably baby ones) to allow them to nibble off bits of dead skin. Now I thought this was a technique used to remove that hardened skin from your feet. But he chose to expose his whole lower body to the curious nibblers and wouldn’t you know it one of them only swam up his urethra. His bloody willy hole! He apparently tried to pull it out but it was too slippery. Can you imagine seeing the little bugger slide up your piss passage? Oh my frigging lawd. The bloody thing was removed DEAD after a 3 hour operation. 3 HOURS!! What were they doing all that time? The mind boggles. But who but a frigging loon would sit naked in a bath full of greasy slimey eels big or small? What was he thinking? I once went on a busines trip with BT to Madrid with my great boss Brian M and our host invited us to lunch, orderding some local specialities for us. The starter was a large vol-au-vent which looked so appetising until I cut into it and a slew of elvers (baby eels) piled out onto my plate. I swear they were still alive. I still feel ill at the thought of ingesting them but the thought of having them swim up the original tunnel of love makes me feel positively faint.
What is it with some folk?