London, Aug/Sept 2004
September 09, 2004 GMT
How Can It Be?
What just happened here?
It fits. I am stunned.
Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at 10:25 PM
The Last Of England *blub*
Nearly... nearly... I've just stuffed 95% of what was left of my worldly goods and chattels into 9 very big black dustbin bags. Now it's for the fine men - and women - of Islington's refuse service to bicker and quarrel over my old pants. I wish them well. The men that is - I no longer care what happens to my pants. Our relationship, stout and true though it was, is over, and there's an end of it.
Here's a picture of what's left:
I know what you're thinking; How in the name of the sausage-fingered Christ-child is he gonna get all that shite into two boxes a foot across?
I'm thinking that too. Oh crappy buggermothers. Not to worry - I've got literally all night to come up with a plan, and plenty of dustbin bags with which to execute it.
Anyway I'm having a breather at the moment and at times like this, even men of granite souls and steel brains like myself become thoughtful. Last night, in a beautiful rock and roll loop, I went to see Rush - Canadia's leading pomp rock trio -
- with Amazing Cousin Jake (pictured left) -
23 years after they were the first band I ever saw, in the same venue. That makes me, depending on whether you like Rush or not, either (a) an arse, or (b) not an arse, but it doesn't -in itself- make me a bad person. Unfortunately they've written a helluva lot of songs since I last bought an album of theirs, in 1983, but - strike me down God if I lie - the old ones were daisy-fresh and spanglesque.
A lot of Carling Black Label was consumed which interfered rather forcefully with my enjoyment of my 9am doctor's appointment this morning.
Anyway, I've got to go and put things in boxes. Cheerio Merrie England!
Catch you later London Town!
Bring on the two-wheeled mayhem!
Next stop: Cherbourg...
Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at 09:51 PM
August 27, 2004 GMT
Drinking Is Good For You
Further thanks must go to Mr Jeffrey MacPherson of Vancouver, or "the 'Couv" as it's known to residents, a large town in a country called Canadia. He was kind enough to get so drunk with me in a selection of Cologne's most happening bars, that we struck on the idea of sailing a hot air balloon across Africa, with two motorcycles strapped to the side. Voila! 9 months later and fantasy has become reality. Except for the balloon. And Jeff.
That's the chap on the right. Cheers old boy!
Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at 08:00 PM
August 14, 2004 GMT
The *ahem* "Plan"
Here's the basic plan...
March 04: Give up job. Borrow money from mortgage people. Done that. Oh yeah - remember to pass bike test. And buy a bike.
Sept 12th 04: Ferry Portsmouth-Cherbourg. Potter across France and a bit of North Spain and head for Lisbon, to meet some pals for a week of sunny lager action at the end of Sept.
Early Oct 04: Widdle about in Portugal & southern Spain for a bit, aiming for Gibraltar. Buy Marmite and PG Tips.
About 15th Oct: Ferry Spain-Morocco. Muck about there for p'raps a month.
Mid Nov 04: Head south through Mauritania. Sand ahoy.
December 04: Senegal. Meet a different pal for a week, spend Xmas in Dakar or the Gambia.
Jan 05 to April/May: Mali, heading towards Ghana where lager and beaches are the watchword. Apparently. Then on to (probably) Cameroon, and if things are a bit dicey in the war department in the Congo area, attempt to air-freight self and bike to either Uganda or Kenya. So, these two countries around June-ish.
July/Aug 05: Tanzania featuring Zanzibar.
Sept-ish: Dawdling southwards, aiming for Malawi, Mozambique, Botswana, maybe Namibia, eventually South Africa for Dec 05, Xmas in Cape Town, where in theory various relatives will come and meet.
Jan 1st 2006: Scratch head and wonder what to do with rest of life.
These plans are flattered by the description "loose". Frankly if I make it to Portsmouth in time for the 11.15 Cherbourg ferry I'll be pleased as punch.
This is me (right) and Aust, my lovely pal who scarpered to New Zealand, successfully, and may thus have played an inspirational role in my current "flush-life-down-crapper-and-see-what-happens" scheme.
Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at 04:23 PM
When I say I'm doing the trip on a Dominator with a few mods, I don't mean I'm going with a small group of parka-clad scooteristas. Oh no. I mean the Dominator has been fiddled with (by Mr. David Lambeth of A Field, Southern England). This is what it looked like pre-fiddle...
Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at 02:34 PM