Saturday, 27 August 2016

Days (n-1)-1: Larrington Towers - Chicago IL

Scene: A second-hand ice cream van, parked just off Copacabana Beach.
C Boardman: O hai! I am TV's C Boardman and I am made ov teh Win!
S Brotherton: O hai! I am TV's S Brotherton and I, also, am made ov teh Win!
Omnes: FFS! U 2 clownz still here? Get tae fck! We want ML Maire 4 teh Funneh!!1!
FX: Big 'splodey Stuffs. Ice cream van, C Boardman and S Brotherton fly in2 teh air, umop-ap!sdn and on fire.
ML Maire: And so perish all enemies of the Queen!
C Boardman: MUNKEH...

Welcome to year eight1 of the Automatic Diary which, as you may have observed, is starting back where it almost started in 2009, viz. Chicago; the very first AD entry having actually been writted a couple of hours up the road in Madison WI. I went to Fort Larrington on Thursday rather than Friday because Bank Holibob traffic and have thus had a couple of days of dignified loafing and cooling-off after the perspiration-drenched Horror that was packing The Luggage in what the perfidious French call a "canicule". I thought that was a BEER chiller.

Omnes:ZOMG!!1! That was teh Terrible, ML Maire! Sum1 defenestrate him, quick!

Mohammed and his Mercedes whisked me to the big shed of impatience that is LHR Terminal 5 with considerable verve and a lot greater comfort than the cranky old grid of a VW people carrier Galaxy Cars afforded me last year. It even has a little light under the front passenger seat so you can check that you haven't left any toes behind in your haste to cram everything into the bulging maw of Luggage 2. Right, off outside for the last fag until Abroad, where the FOREIGNS come from.

Well, that was painless.  Connoisseurs of USAnian airport Tales of Woe might like to know that getting from the very back row of a very full 747 to sparking up the first fag outside Terminal 5 of Chicago-O'Hare took about thirty minutes.  Most of which being waiting for The Luggage to appear.  Natch the pickup area outside is a total bloody shambles, with the only system being "taxis to the right, everyone else to the left".  So the shuttle buses have to mix it with Ubermenschen and divers stray private motons and just stop anywhere they can find 2/3 of a bus-sized space.

Here is Chris.  Chris may look like a well-groomed and personable employee of Avis Car Rental, but this is a facade.  He is an Imp of Stan.  I can tell from the fact that the first sentence he utters contains the words "Corvette" and "convertible".  Mr Larrington is tempted, until he works out that a hundred and fifty dollars a day for twenty-eight days is, er, $BIGNUM.  No, says your author, I will stick with the Mustang.  Chris fights a desperate rearguard action.  Soz, he says, we are all out of convertible Mustangs but can do you a VW Beetle.

Driving a convertible Beetle - in fact any sort of Beetle - will immediately turn you into an estate agent.  Or worse.  I refuse to admit defeat and take the proffered hardtop Mustang instead, which is redder than, say, a red thing or a current F1 Ferrari.  I will try to update the photo at the top of the page in the next day or two, but not now because it is teatime.

Once I am out of the Field of Evil radiated by Chris, Emily the TwatNav wakes up to the fact that she is not in E17 any more and wafts me to tonight's caravanserai with nary a blip.  Unlike last year, when she had to be threatened with replacement by an inferior FOREIGN-bought model.

Fans of the Condensed Tour de France-stylee reportage for e.g. Mrs Pingu might like to know that hand-crufting the HTML tables is way too much like hard work so is unlikely to be a daily occurrence.

Edit: I have just noticed that the motor-car bears the licence plate "RAT 9691"2 so the chances are fairly high that it will hereinafter become known as "The Ratmobile".

Edit 2: Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Dave Minter, aka LittleWheelsandBig, who is currently in hostipal in Bangkok with a b0rked pelvis 
  1. Blimey! Eight already!
  2. Georgia, for some reason

1 comment:

  1. A good strong start. 10/10. :-)

    Looking forward to this year's adventures.