Australia Tour 2010/11
Greensleeves to Pink Tights
My journey starts with a 6 hour journey to Stokenchurch - the M6 is as wonderful as usual - and I arrive at Tremers gaff in time for his leaving do at the " Fox & Hounds ". This involves a turkey dinner with all the trimmings , including copious amounts of alcohol.The port is passed to the left , ( conventionally ) and then poured into a pint of Guinness ( unconventionally ) to create a cocktail called " Velvet Pussy".
Once Tremers craving for Pussy has been satisfied we return to his house for some fitful sleep , and the 6 O'clock alarm , which in this case does ring on time and summons us to Heathrow. Tremers reeks of port , and I suspect he is feeling a little rough as we board our Royal Brunei alcohol free flight to Perth ( with various stops ) . I discussed this dry aspect with one of his mates , Lashers , in the Fox the previous night as he had flown with this airline previously.
" Mate , we just opened a bottle of JD and kept ordering coke. They must have known cos we were all over the place. The most pissed Ive ever been on a plane."
So my hopes rose , but were soon dashed as the flight started. No beer , obviously. A crap selection of films. A series of bland meals. So many packets of "Camel" nuts I thought I was growing a couple of humps. And worst of all - lift music every time we landed. The same lift music. "Greensleeves" by a sub-James Galway and " The time of my life " by the same sub-James Galway.
I got up to go to the toilet and there saw the highlight of the flight. After each passenger emerged from the john , a Brunei steward replete with a rubber glove and aerosol went in and sprayed the toilet compartment liberally to conceal the offending smells. I can only presume that flying dry leads to many cases of bad guts.
7 hours later and after several glasses of anaemic Mary we arrived in Dubai to refuel where we had to disembark , scan our hand luggage again , walk round the airport , and check in again , to get on the same plane in the same seats. A 3 hour farce Monty Python would have been proud of.
From Dubai we flew to Brunei - another 8 hours - then spent 3 hours waiting for our connection in a tacky airport before finally setting off for Perth - which took another 6 hours. We arrived at the airport one hour after our beloved England team who had flown direct, no doubt by BA Business Class.
The immigration officer told us that Stuart Broad had lost his temper during a strip search and had punched a customs official and been arrested - he is now doubtful for the first Test.
Tremers pal Travis is waiting for us at the airport in a very big car and he has kindly offered to drop me off at my backpackers - Governor Robinsons. " Mate , I'm sorry but I wont be able to drop you right outside your place. Its the Gay & Lesbian Pride Festival in Perth tonight, and most of the roads are blocked off".
We park about half a mile away and Tremers kindly helps me with my bags , losing a stone in weight in the process.The backpacker is an eye opener for me, and at once with crystal clarity I understand fully why PC Tintin , Tractor and the rest of the Gippo Army always demand this type of accommodation - which , by the way I am doing simply because of the Dick Turpin - arranged exchange rate in order to save money.
They want 9 days payment upfront before I have seen the room
When I do see it , it is bare with no decor whatsoever.
There are no bog rolls - and I have to call the cleaner to wipe my jet-lagged ar**having only noticed the lack of paper half way through a post 6 plane-meal type sh*t.
There are no towels , soap , or shampoo , and the shower is multi-directional.
The place is filled with foreigners who all talk worse English than Dean Windass.
All in all , I imagine , a bit like staying on Devils Island but without the job satisfaction.
Thank you Gippo Army for opening my eyes like St Paul on the way to Damascus.
Tired as I am I venture out to the All Seasons hotel for a beer. George and myself together with Steve H. will be staying there during the Ashes.
The good news - they have James Boags beer on draught! GREAT!
The bad news - its $8 a pint or six quid! NOT SO GREAT!
Im told later this is the cheapest pint in Perth! TIME TO GO TEETOTAL.
As the Gay & Lesbian Parade outside draws to a close I am joined at the All Seasons bar by two middle aged gentlemen , one dressed as an American Cop the other as an Indian Chief - and not wearing very much. I decline their offer of a pow-wow in their room and explain that unfortunately I am staying elsewhere.
Tonight ( Sunday ) we have watched the Aussies play Sri Lanka at the WACA in a 20-20. The Aussies got stuffed although they only had four of the likely test team playing. The ground staff had a store of fireworks to explode each time the Aussies hit a boundary , but they hit so few we had an impromptu firework display after their innings instead and then Dilshan and Sangakkara proceeded to quickly exhaust the rest of the squibs as they blasted the Aussie bowling to all parts. Only 16 overs to win.
Our tour has started well.
Regards to all , Midnight.