I got directed by a nine year old who was on some course.
He was constantly disappointed that my lines weren’t word perfect.
Sorry little dude.
I got directed by a nine year old who was on some course.
He was constantly disappointed that my lines weren’t word perfect.
Sorry little dude.
I got back to the guesthouse where I am staying after a long walk and an even longer session of drinking with buskers. I washed my feet in cold cold water and then fell on the bed and passed out.
My jetlag woke me up, and I stumbled back to the bathroom, pissed and glugged down several glasses of water.
There was a knock on my door.
Why is housekeeping here I wonder. Surely it’s not 10am. What the hell is the time? How long have I been asleep for? Where are my pants? Maybe I imagined it.
"hello?" knock knock.
What the fuck? I pull on pants and open the door. Standing there are two eastern european beauties in their pyjamas. It is 2am. I am still drunk and 70% still asleep. I’ve seen adult movies, I know how they start. What the hell is going on?
“we hef locked ourselves out of room.”
“Do you have phone?”
“Oh. Right. Yeah, here you go.”
“Can you call? My english is so bad.”
So at 2am I take out the NZ sim card on my phone, put in the UK one i just bought. Activate the sim card by calling the top up menu, then find the after hours emergency number in the room info. Call, wake a guy up, explain the situation to him. hang up. Explain slowly several times to the pyjama-ed ukranians that he will be there in 20 minutes and they have to wait quietly downstairs.
Waiting quietly must’ve been lost in translation. I lie in my bed and listen to them chat back and forth.
I fall asleep and have seriously twisted dreams.
Tonight will be my last performance at Scared Scriptless in the forseeable future. I have worked as a professional improviser for the Court Jesters for nearly ten years. I have met many of my favourite people through it as well as many of my favourite creative collaborators. My work there exposed me to the Court Theatre who have given me many interesting and exciting opportunities to act, write and direct.
Despite that I am glad to be leaving. There is little thrill remaining in it. I will never know if I can run if I don’t drop the crutch. But the unknown, the void and the danger in that - this appeals to a me that spent years touring Canada with a backpack of props, a chip on my shoulder and an exotic accent.
In the words of Captain Cook as imagined by Brendon Bennetts.
“Exploration! Adventure! Discovery!”
I’ve got a contract that will pay me enough to live on a fair while. I got a skillset that I carry around in my brain and in my meat flesh. I got a hat.
And a man can go far in a hat.
Yesterday i went to a meeting looking suspiciously like a hobo, in a suit, driving a sports car. The meeting was with someone i had never met but who wanted to engage my services as a comic writer. I said yes. I have a difficult task but i think a good deal. We shall see. I already wrote some jokes for them and that is ahead of schedule.
The outline is due on monday.
Today i was at coffee looking like a hobo in a hoodie most likely up to crimes, when i got a phone call. Did i remember that big project? Y’know, that one? Well it’s due in two hours, oh what’s that you haven’t done shit on it. Ok, i’ll see if i can get the deadline extended for you.
The outline is due Monday.
This afternoon i went to a meeting looking like a hobo with a hangover driving a stolen car. Everyone showed me reinterpretations of the pictures i had drawn for them except now they were good. I nodded a lot. I think one time i said something insightful. I’m so the director. I never knew that wanting everyone to have shiny buttons would be what broke the budget. Then we went to the pub.
Rehearsals start monday…
I’m watching videos of sharks on the internet!
tomorrow will be very exciting as i am going for a ride on the aeroplane to Wellington. Everyone in Wellington wears skinny jeans and is young and carrying their design portfolio up and down Cuba mall.I have many fond memories of wellington and so i am delighted to have been given a travel subsidy on account of A. Live in disaster zone B. no money C. Can write convincing application D unstoppable raw molten talent (pick two) in order to do two days of courses with theatrical folks from wellington. Sure others will be fun but super excited for Jo Randerson and Indian Ink crew.
I’m mostly going for the after drinks.
Week 3: Just about done. Please find me a laundromat.
A tube, a plane, a bus, a train and a taxi is all it takes to get me from Sunderland to Bath. There, in a final act of desperation I wash some socks in the sink. I then head out to the pub and meet up with Gia, aka Billy the kid, Canadian magician and street performer. We hang out for a couple of hours which is charming. She seems pretty lonely over here. In passing I ask if there’s a laundromat somewhere. No dice…
The next day I do two enormous shows at Bath university, 900 and 1200 respectfully the last one of which I actually enjoy enormously, probably because I added a new section in the show John wasn’t there for. Heheh. Secret.
That night I have dinner at a French restaurant as an end of tour treat. It is the best food I have had in 3 weeks. I have king prawns and Poulet Breton with several pints of Stella Artois. Just marvelous. Gia turns up, having been to Bristol for a lamp, just as I’ve embarked on another pint and we talk shit for the rest of the evening and then head out for a stroll around historic Bath and an attempt to find a pub that is still open.
The next day, or home day, I whip down to M&S and buy a T-shirt, a pack of underpants and some socks. There’s no way I’m flying home wearing the filthy clothes that I have. I then get me and my stuff to the train station and sit reading my book (Risk – an analysis of fear) I scorn the first train that goes by to Paddington as I have a seat reservation on the next one. Then, naturally, my train is canceled. Half an hour later the mission begins.
Bath to Paddington to Heathrow to Dubai to Bangkok to Sydney to Christchurch. It takes nearly 40 hours. I get about six hours of half sleep during this period. It is unpleasant. But I get home laden with gin and DVD’s. I find that Kathleen and all is good.
And that’s how you make $**** in 3 weeks. Easy as that…
Week 2: The real work. For professionals only. Method and gimmick included.
I wake up at 6:30 and kick into action, packing my stuff and head down to breakfast. I can’t actually stomach the concept of eating fried food and can’t even bring myself to go look at it. I have some grapefruit juice, a coffee and a bowl of muesli. I then catch a cab to the station and train from Chichester to East Croyden, East Croyden to London Bridge and London Bridge to Greenwich. I then wander out into Greenwich and bang, there’s my hotel. Well, sweet as a nut. My itinerary says to just go to the Uni, but I’ve got an hour and a half until the call time, so I check in and get to dump my unessential stuff. I look at a map and decide I’ll just walk down to the uni. It’s close. I have ages. I get there and after a minimum of fuss, but many stairs I find what I think is the venue. However there is a class in there. Hmm. I call the client.
“Hi Jonathan, I’m in Kings 513, but there seems to be another class in here. Is this the venue?”
“Oh yes but that’s the venue for the 5pm show. The 1:30 one is on our other campus. Pop down to my office.”
So I pop down. Jonathan is a jolly administrator in the cracking Phillip Aldridge mode.
“Yes, I was going to take you there myself but it’s just so blasted busy this morning, I’ve called you a cab.”
So I get in a cab and get driven to the other campus. On the way Frank, who is the biggest faaakin geezer lunnin cabbie, tells me that the uni doesn’t have an account and that I’m going to have to pay for the cab.
I have 15 quid in my wallet.
I get to the other campus. It’s a 40 minute drive to outside London. Frank pulls out the paper.
“Just wait for you to finish mate, so’s I can run you back.”
I totally have a geezer chauffeur. I’m John Constantine. I’m running late by now, but no worries as this campus have no idea what it is I’m going to do or what my technical requirements will be.
“Ok, lets just sit down for a second. Now, what exactly are you going to do today?”
I set up by myself and then go find my contact. He doesn’t recognise me in my professor disguise. At all. Eventually he asks me when Dan will come back. I have to tip him off. I can’t help myself. He is shocked to bits and maybe a little hurt.
I do the show. It has a shit turn out. Maybe 30 students. On the plus side a chick comes up to me at the end and says,
“Thanks for that, I was really thinking about going home coz I feel so homesick, but I won’t now.”
I get back in the cab.
“Gidday mate. All good? I went and bought a curry. Faakin 4 quid. White meat. Faakin shit! I could get that in Greenwich for 2 quid. Fuckin’ disgrace.”
“Yeah man. A crying shame.”
I still haven’t eaten since not really eating breakfast.
We drive back to the other campus via my hotel so I can get some cash. My personal cabdriver for the day. £180. A phone call from John grovelling about it. Priceless.
I do the 5 o’clock show to even fewer people. Maybe 20. It sucks. Still haven’t eaten. Waiting for Chris to get back to the hotel. Still haven’t eaten.
Eventually Chris got in, we went for a stroll and got something to eat. During dinner Mark gives me a call and we chat about shit for maybe 10 minutes or so, which is neat. He and Jack are planning a fringe show for 2010 and are interested in having me open for them. I tell him to keep me in the loop.
I have breakfast with Chris the next day and then go and pack my shit and check out, leaving my luggage in the Hotel’s luggage room. I then have some time to kill so Chris and I go for a stroll, we drink shit English coffee, I show him the venue for his evening show, we look at the Thames, we chat about strippers and the difference between them and burlesque acts. We then drift back to the hotel and that’s the last I’ll see Chris on this tour.
I catch a cab out to the Avery campus (this one’s only £16 away) They are absolutely frantic here. I wait in a queue with students just cause I’m in no hurry and I want to see if how they’ll treat me when they think I’m a student will be different to how they’ll treat me when I say who I am. It’s not a very complex experiment and the outcome is unsurprising.
It’s another crap turnout, it maybe gets to 25 students, but everyone has a good time for a change. I burn through it as I’m paranoid about missing my train afterwards and I get the show back down to 70 minutes. Then it’s a cab to Greenwich, a train to London bridge, a tube to Moorgate, a tube to Paddington and finally a train to Oxford. When I get to Oxford I’ve been told to get a cab, but I have a look at a map and the hotel looks close so I just walk it to save the petty cash. I find it and manage to even get the key from the bar next door where it has been left for me. I have a shower, the pipes scream like a dying fire alarm every time they’re turned on. It’s relaxing.
The next morning I head out to the Oxford Brooks campus for two shows. They are well attended and a good time is had by all. I fall asleep in between them. Just to show how much I’m into it. I cab back into Oxford and wander around for a bit, looking vainly for a laundromat as my clothes are in a terrible, terrible state. No luck. I pop into Games Workshop and talk nerd with the nerds there and then buy a book and go sit in the pub eating 3 types of meat, drinking lager and reading about space detectives.
I’m so fucking horny. I got turned on by a Chinese girl singing out of tune because it sounded like sex noises.
I get up early, 5:30 early, walk to the station and train Oxford to Paddington, Tube to Victoria then Train To East Canterbury and cab to the venue. This is the first time Canterbury Christ Church has had Unismart and it’s pretty disorganised. John is there as well and stresses me out with asking me if I’ve done all my checklists. This is the first show I’ve done with full lights so it’s a bit more of an ordeal but considering the room doesn’t even black out properly it seems like a bit of a waste of a time. I do two shows, as usual the
attendance is terrible. Then I cab back to the station, train to Victoria, Tube to some desolate outskirts station, then train to Stanstead airport, bus to The Holiday Inn and then after a panini and a gin in the bar, pass out.
Only to wake at 5:30am (again) and bus back to the airport. After checking in I’m in a train that takes you between gates and I run into Amy Straker and Cate Cable. They are flying to Sweden. The world is tiny. And surreal. The flight is hideous, full of shouting lads. I try to go back to sleep. I get picked up at the airport in a cab (with a guy with my name, always love that) and fall asleep on the way to Sunderland University. When we arrive I head in, buy a coffee and meet my guy, who is a bleak Scottish woman called Kirstin. The venue is a basketball court. It seats 500. I have bad feelings. The first show is quite well attended though, maybe close to 300, although bizarrely about 50 people leave at the Hello, hello section, which is disheartening. The next show however has eleven people. An all new low! Hurrah! After the shows I go check into my hotel and read my book a while longer then pop down to the pub next door for dinner. It’s pretty vile as it’s packed and everyone is shouting. I eat quick then head back to my room.
IT’S MY DAY OFF! I sleep in till 10. Then I head off for laundry and new batteries. Despite several contradicting sets of directions after 3 hours of wandering about I have found batteries but still no laundry. My feet hurt so i go back to the hotel for SIESTA. Luxury!
I just mess around for the rest of the day, reading my book and whatnot. I go out and have a beer and then some dinner which is unremarkable. I get a bit pissed off two pints and for a while I’m worried I won’t be able to find my way home. But then I do coz I is awesome.
To be concluded/…
Week one: Orientation. Orienteering. Orangutang?
I have two days of no shows to adjust my self to being on a completely different circadian rhythm. Realistically this is not enough time to completely invert a body clock, but I do my best. The first day I do pretty much nothing except eat breakfast and dinner, write and mess about on the internet. After the trauma of the day before it’s great to just sit in the cocoon of the hotel room and not worry about missing a train or plane. I see Conrade at breakfast and John gets in later that evening.
Chris turns up at breakfast next day. Both of them have already started their tour so now I’m here the circle is complete. I have 2 rehearsals in the afternoon. I pop along to see Conrade’s show just to remind myself of what it is that I’m doing. After the dryness of the rehearsal space in Christchurch it’s good to see the show in front of an audience again. I’m rehearsing for a truncated 45 minute version of the show which I’m doing the next date. After checking my schedule I’m kinda peeved that I have to learn an extra + material + links for a one off show. Still. Client always right. Things go alright. I run the transitions and then run the whole thing in 50 minutes. It’s just a mad race to the finish.
The next day I have three shows at the other campus. So I get a cab at 7 after my full English breakfast and off I go. I get to the other campus and the person who’s meant to meet me is not on campus. I go find the venue myself. There’s no technician and no set up has been done. I call the other contact. Her phone is off and she has a message saying she won’t be answering it until orientation is over as she is too busy. I do all my setup myself, including finding a table hidden away under some blacks. Then I realise that there is no radio mic. Eventually someone turns up and I let them know. The IT department are duly summoned and they proceed to mess around inside the lectern trying to fix the frequency issues that are going on. They can’t, so 15 minutes after the start time I have to just tell them to go away. Just go away guys. Go away.
I have an audience of 12 people.
This show is too big for 12 people, it’s like a punch in the face if it’s not defused over enough of them so I have to tone the whole thing down which, on my first show of the tour, I’m really not in the space to be super adaptive. I try my best and muddle through and I suppose it works but personally it’s a bit of a fizzer. I did however pick a legally blind girl for my volunteer to do up the straightjacket. Which could have been a disaster, but went really well and as several people said to me afterwards was a massive boost to her confidence and whatnot.
I have a second one about an hour later. This is the truncated 45 minute show and I actually have an audience for this. I make good time through it until I get to the straightjacket again and this time in an attempt to not get a legally blind woman again, I pick a girl who looks all attentive and confident. Poor choice. She immediately is overcome with hysterical nerves and giggling and I start hemorrhaging time. Amusingly admittedly, but nonetheless the aimed for 45 minutes is never going to happen with this silly bitch. I wrap the show at 55 minutes. Conrade turns up, cranks out a massive one and then I have the final one for the day. Two people turn up. The show is cancelled. And that is how you make $**** in one day. Hurrah!
That night we have what is a little bit of a ******** tradition, the professors dinner. This is where everyone dresses as their hoax professor and we go out for dinner en masse and in character. It’s a fun night and made even more delightful by the fact it’s on the company tab. I actually get a comparatively good nights sleep that night.
The next day I have one show on the main campus in a more modern lecture theatre. It’s fine, again not massively attended but I do an OK show. I feel a bit all over the place switching back to the longer version, my juggling is quite shit, everything seems to be taking so long, and this rattles me a little, especially as I know John is watching. At the end however it’s taken 70 minutes exactly and John is pleased with everything except the way I mime a tray. Um. OK.
Next day Conrade and I catch a sequence of trains and tubes until we arrive at Chichester. It’s an old roman town, still has a wall around it, very cute all historic action. We are checked into a bed and breakfast above a pub. Again, cute. We talk to John Delaly who is the client for a good while over a pint. When he heads off, we head up to our rooms. As Conrade barrels on past this tiny old woman who’s been sitting primly sipping her second glass of wine says,
“He just walks in as if he owns the place.”
Conrade only half hears this so I say,
“Oh yes, he’s a very confident gentleman.”
“I don’t find that amusing.” She replies. We’re both really thrown by this sniping old lady, what did she expect that we would ask special permission to go up to our rooms? When I come back down she’s still there and I give her a winning smile. Nothing.
Later that evening we pop along to the cinema which is outside of the historic section of the town in what essentially resembles an American strip mall. We eat American food at a faux Italian diner and then after a few beers and some rambling we go see District 9.
The next day I get up and after a rather revolting breakfast go do some shows. It’s the first one I’ve done this tour that has actually been decently attended. I have a great time with it but somehow end up running almost 90 minutes on what should be a 70 minute show. Whoops. Conrade does his show then John Galaly drops us at our hotel and after a late dinner and a large glass of wine I fall fast asleep. This is the last I’ll see of Conrade for quite some time.
It’s traveling time again Daniel. Do you remember how to do this? You used to do it all the time but then you went and got steadily employed. Well, now it’s time for you to be punished for stability! Ho ho, you’re all nervous about it as well. You are an old man.
I put on a tie and a shirt. I wait at Christchurch Airport for too long by myself. Airports make me feel sweaty. Danny Goulter is there, heading to Melbourne for a business conference. He introduces me to several Dick Smith managers. They are off to confer.
I fly from Christchurch to Sydney. I watch Christian Bale be John Connor the future Jesus in Terminator: Salvation. It’s pretty dumb. Although not as dumb as Rise of the Machines. Still pretty dumb though. I’m flying emirates. They are quite, quite awesome. Although perhaps a little fond of telling you about it over and over in compulsory videos. (always twice, once in Arabic, then in English. When you see this on every connecting flight it wears pretty thin.)
Sydney Airport swabs me and my briefcase for bombs. Then I wander around for 3 hours, deliberately not eating. (must not change currency, must be frugal, eating is cheating, nothing tastes as good as feeling thin. I’ve adopted mantra of the professional anorexic to see me through) Vodaphone sends me a txt every time I arrive in a new country telling me via exclamation marks that the rates I’ll pay in this country aren’t exorbitant. They sure seem exorbitant, but why would they make it seem exciting if they was?
So I get on the next plane. A 13 hour flight from Sydney to Dubai. I watch Wall-e which is just gorgeous and A Bunch of Amateurs which is also gorgeous and as I tend to do on flights when at the brink of exhaustion I sit in the dark weeping at how GODDAMN BEAUTIFUL IT ALL IS. Then I have a crack at a sleep which doesn’t really pan out terribly well. I’m trapped in against the window by an elderly couple. I wait till they fall asleep and then just climb over them, all nimble and sneaky like. I try more poor sleeping but that doesn’t work so I watch Tom Cruise not bother to be German in Valkyrie. Oh man, they’re all dead and stuff just because they didn’t want to be evil. More weeping.
Dubai Airport is epic. I am in a security checkpoint queue with maybe four hundred other people. All I can hear are Australians whining and making shitty jokes. It’s massive and lush and artfully lit and clean and water features. And NOT ENOUGH TOILETS. Every single one has a queue of people waiting to take a shit. I break my own deal and change some cash so I can get something to eat. In the end, as the restaurants are too expensive and the Cafes are shit I get McDonalds. I get a chicken Big Mac. What the hell? What crazy world is this! I have a photo somewhere. With all Arabic and stuff on it. Oh, foreign countries! You’re so foreign. I’m in this airport for 3 hours. I decide to squander some of my precious phone battery and listen to some music. The first track that comes on in random is Souljacker part 1. I see this as a sign. Blink.
I’m sitting in the departure lounge and I keep falling asleep for about 20 seconds and then I wake up again and then fall back asleep. It’s really weird. And I think a sign. Blink. New track. Blink. Chinese woman eating American potato chips in Dubai. Blink. Boarding announcement. Blink. I’m on the next plane and I try to go to sleep and I can because I have 3 seats to myself! But it’s 6 in the morning and in the desert the sun really likes to shine. Don’t you close the shutters! They need to be open for take off! So the pilot can see out when he’s reversing I assume. Final flight, Dubai to London. 6 hours. Including 20 minutes of sleep and four episodes of Paul and Harry, Paul Whitehouse and Harry Enfield’s new sketch show, which I didn’t know existed but which is rather fun more of the time than it isn’t.
You know what is awesome? Traveling into countries that aren’t America. Everyone else is so chilled out. Sure, they’re security conscious, and not just letting you in without finding out something about what you’re up to, but they don’t automatically assume that you’re up to no good and that it’s their job to catch you before you destroy ‘merica.
I’m in the security line. Again I’m surrounded by Australians making terrible jokes and whining. The woman at the immigration desk says,
“I see you’re eligible for a British passport. Just haven’t got one yet?”
“No, but now that I’ve seen the length of the queues I think I might have to get around to it.”
Hoho. I am quips.
I get my stuff and catch the tube into Kings Cross. So far things have gone just spectacularly well. Sure, I’m tired but everything has panned out so well and I am super positive. However once I get off this tube into the station things will go downhill for a bit. They will get better f’sure, but there will be about four or five hours of rather poor times. Feel free to skip ahead if you like to believe that everything is about babbling brooks and frolicking lambs.
But first there must be a period of false hope. It’s important that things don’t just ‘go bad’ otherwise there’s no drama, we have to think that maybe it’s all going to be fine. So then when it doesn’t, we fall further. I approve that my life follows good dramatic structure.
My mission is this: Go to the post office. Pick up a letter to me. In it is a ticket. Walk to Euston station. Use the ticket to catch a train to Wolverhampton. Easy.
I exit Kings Cross station. The first thing I see is the post office. Hell yes. Life is good and I am so clever. I stand in line at the post office for ages. The guy has no idea what I want. “you see, usually, you have an address, and people send mail to you. Not to the post office.’
‘Yes, I understand the concept of a postal service, however, i was told that you would be holding a letter for me.” I hand him my ID.
“Nothing here for you.”
“Is this 100 Caledonian Rd?”
“No. You’re at the wrong post office.”
“OK, how do I get there?”
“Turn right. Just ask someone. Next”
I turn right. It’s a lot harder to just ask someone. Everyone else is also on a mission, but they know how to achieve theirs. So I’m wandering, kinda circling the station coz I know it must come off there and although my bag is the lightest it’s ever been at 18kgs it’s still 18kgs and I’m tired, worried and feel too old for this shit. I find Caledonia Rd and on a vague hunch follow it and at the end I find Caledonian Rd! Look at that! I did it all myself! And I’m at number….16. OK. Plenty of time left. Off I go towards 100. The shops start thinning out a lot, which is a bad sign. 60 odd and it’s all empty shops and apartments. Creeping sensation of doom. 100 Caledonian Rd. It’s a corner dairy slash off license. It is not a post office by even a very loose definition. There is a red very English post box outside, but I think that’s pushing it for claiming to be a post office.
++Mission update. Ticket acquisition failed. Acquire new ticket. Catch trains. Sleep. Really, really need to sleep. ++
I walk to St Pancras station where there is a connection to the national rail service. I find a ticket office and buy a ticket. It costs £69. There goes over a third of my food budget for a week. The guy gabbles some instructions about a transfer and gives me the ticket. Bemused I walk back out into the station and look at some screens and look at the ticket in my hand hoping to find some sort of correlation between the two. There isn’t one. I have a small panic attack when I misread the time of purchase as being the departure time. I go back into the ticket office.
“Hi. I just bought this and have no idea what to do with it.”
“OK. You’re in the wrong station. You need to go to Euston. It’s about 10 minutes down the road.”
“Oh. Of course.”
I walk to Euston Station. It is more than 10 minutes. It starts raining. I have another panic about missing my train and getting stuck in London with £69 less than I had. I get to the station and look at the screens. I see one that says Wolverhampton on it. I go to that platform by way of a bakery thing for a sandwich and a bottle of water because I’m starting to get light headed and dehydrated. I stand at the platform. There’s nothing written on the train. And then I see him! Red Coat! The assistant of the British Rail Service! There to serve and protect!
“Hi. I’m trying to get to Wolverhampton.”
“Right. You’ll need to change at … Birmingham.”
And off he goes.
“But where is the train to fucking Birmingham” I whisper. I head off after him. He is walking through the train. I am outside. He comes out at the other end as I catch up.
“Excuse me. Can you please help me? Please. I’m trying to get to Wolverhampton. Please.”
“I told you! You need to change at Birmingham.”
“But what train goes there? I don’t know. Please.”
“The one on platform one. Or this one.”
“OK. OK. Thank you. Thank you.”
I walk back down the entire length of the train to get to the standard fare carriages, swearing the whole way and get on. I put my bag down and just sink into a coma of exhaustion and worry. The train heads out of the station.
There are two stops called Birmingham.
So I spend the whole journey freaking out that I’m going to get out at the wrong one. I decide that it’s probably the last one, as it’s the end of the line and it would make sense that transfers onto other lines would happen there. I stand up to get off at the stop. I’m standing in the vibrating carriage, outside the toilet and I can smell toilet chemicals and everything’s swaying and I’m horrifically worried and then I realise if I don’t get it together I’m going to throw up all over the business men in front of me. I stare very intently at the wall. The train stops. I get off. It is a big station. This is a good sign. I find a timetable. They have trains to Wolverhampton! I find the platform. I get on the train. I sit there and rock a bit. Then I have a totally irrational moment where I figure that I’m actually on the wrong train and I pick up all my stuff and get off and walk down to the front just so I can read that, yes it is going to Wolverhampton, so I get back on and sit down again.
On this train journey, a gentleman asks me which stop is Wolverhampton. In a very authoritative voice I tell him that it will be in three stops time. I get out at Wolverhampton station. I find the toilet, as I desperately need a shit. They stink. I retch over and over, trying to not throw up. I pass on my shit.
I get a cab to my hotel. It costs £3. I remember thinking. Wow, cabs are so cheap here. The next day, when I’m a bit more coherent I realise the hotel is almost right next to the station.
And then I was there. I had a shower and ate my sandwich. I bought some internet. I got some sleep.