Thursday 27 August - Paris

Due to the collapse of so many notable institutions this year the summer bank holiday has been specially extended, ‘And Don’t Come Back’ was the rather specific message unfurled at Dover to anyone playing the markets, such as yours almost-completely-truly, and I was only too happy to obey my public and whisk Licky away to Paris. It is our first holiday abroad as it’s long and abreast of Brest, but its planning was by no means down to my huge romantic bone, more the combined funny bones of several friends from Chorlton Village days, most especially the teasing tibias of Cameron (no relation) and Carmona who these days spend their days in and around Grenoble. Swarthy Erick and Swervy Thelma; Jefferson and Melinda Cake make up the numbers with us – much fun spending this year’s modest bonus, plus the best-in-show award that Sanchez picked up at Blackpool Birdz (he’ll never know); later the gold doubloons Miss Jordan has sewn into my chest hair, in this wonderful metropolis. Cheap the Frenchies, nor their city, ain’t – whatever you may read in the papers or cheerily racist periodicals I’ve brought along in a last, ultimately fruitless attempt to stereotype Cameron. A Kiwi friend of the ‘big man’ takes us to a dark and dingy eatery off Rue Oberkampf tonight where we tuck into three courses of the most delicious five star clichĂ©.

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