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Eye doctor an optimist?

June 15, 2013

I was always fighting a losing battle. James “Desperate Dan the Landlord” would look tough and rugged in a tou tou and sequins but he chose shorts again, despite the temperature yesterday morning hovering just above freezing. There is something of the little boy about him, with his predisposition to the wearing of shorts, being read this column by the Mighty Omega each morning, much in the way one might pacify a child, and going off for a nap at “Dingly Dell” in the afternoon, but that is not something I am willing to suggest to his face.

Another day at the cricket at Arundel Castle, becoming more splendid with each hour as the weather forecasters got it spectacularly wrong. The clouds gradually disappeared, the wind dropped, the sun appeared and then underdogs Surrey took control of the game against Sussex. With a couple of beers on board to open ones account so to speak, we retired to a sunny corner to watch the match. I had taken the precaution of stowing the maximum allowed quantity of alcohol permitted to be brought into the ground, a bottle of Shiraz, in my bag. Desperate had done the same, or so I thought, but when I awoke from an afternoon siesta in the sunshine, I found him drinking from a bottle of Malbec. When pressed he said that he had brought it as back up in case the unforgivable happened and we ran out of wine.

I don’t know if it was the wine but Desperate was fascinated by the seagulls circling low over one end of the pitch. He suggested that it may be that they were being attracted to flying ants, but changed his opinion quickly when I pointed out they were circling the burger van.

cricket in the sun

Arundel Castle cricket

After the days play had finished it was inevitable that we would go back to the White Hart, mainly because he lives there and I live next door. Terribly Tall Timothy Taylor was there, still wincing after being beaten at Scrabble by his mother the night before. He was sporting smart new spectacles and was talking about his eye doctor, to whom he referred as”an optimist”. Perhaps that is why he lost the Scrabble?

The pub was heaving and later on, flame haired temptress Carolyn arrived accompanied again by her “nephew”. She told a story about her first “booze cruise” some years earlier when to celebrate their purchases, her and her friend had decided to open one of the bottles of Cremant (she claimed it was Krug) in the car park at the ferry terminal and the cork shot out and killed a seagull.

I also have a note about a landscape gardener describing himself as a landscape butcher, but by that time my recollection was not at its sharpest and I do not remember to whom it referred.

Today is the last day of the county match, so I will continue my, so far, fruitless search for new customers for Currencies Direct. Today will be different as I have made a reservation for lunch for myself and That Nice Lady Decorator in the members pavilion. Desperate will not be joining us for this, mainly because I imagine shorts will be frowned upon in such an erstwhile establishment, however he will be at the cricket, along with half of the inhabitants of Arundel because I think it is free to get in today.

Then it is Fathers day on Sunday and there will be a gathering of the France’s with seldom seen brothers, wives and children coming to Arundel to pay well-deserved homage to man.

Chris France

One Comment leave one →
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