On American soil


So, where was I? No, really, where was I? What time was it? What in the name of hextable could possibly go wrong next? Well, it seems the wrongness still had a little bit to run. I waved goodbye to Mr Cute-AND-Saving-the-World who was collected by his dad, an unexpectedly dead ringer for Jed Clampett from the Beverly Hillbillies (grey stubble, pickup truck) and waited for the taxi.

Now the taxi driver, it turned out after precious little questioning, had lived in Wales for a while, on Anglesey, as his missus is Welsh. Did I know it? Why yes, I said, quietly marvelling at my battery life, I have been through there many a time en route for Holyhead and Dublin. So we talked about Wales for a while (not long, it was a short journey and I don’t know North Wales well enough to filibuster) but joy! Here was the hotel. I fell out of the car, banged through the screen door to reception, hair wild and expression not much calmer. I’m here! Mother of Sweet Divine Baby Jesus and Chum to all His Apostles, I’m bloody well here!

There was a pause as the receptionist eyed me warily – it wasn’t a large room – in which time I reappraised and elected to dial down the enthusiasm to somewhere below madness. It worked. She gave me a key; I didn’t hug her; she told me my friend hadn’t arrived because he was driving in terrible weather; I didn’t cry.

Truth be told, at that moment I didn’t care. Against all the odds I wasn’t sleeping in a ditch. Anything beyond that was gravy.


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