Just left Kelly at Heathrow, endlessly zig-zagging through customs, looking, in her triangular blue coat and pink hat, like a child's drawing. And about the most perfect thing in the world. I held her all the way down on the train, which went the wrong way, rather difficult for an underground train you'd think and you might be right, but our genius train-driver managed it, detouring via terminal four. But we had plenty of time and the drivers mistake was a chance to claw back some romance from the jaws of misery.
It all went very well; we were unharried and methodical, both areas where I traditionally excel (though Kelly will tell you that I'm more inclined to exhale, heavily and often, like a put upon teenager).It was almost fun except that she's gone and gone for a week. She has requested that I sort out my teeth.
Four years ago when we met it was not my snake hipped dance moves that entranced her (now sadly replacement hip moves) nor the lustrous silver crown adorning my head ( which now resembles the ghost of a hayrick ) but my dazzling smile. My teeth. The teeth that are now fenced off to stop druids attempting to celebrate the solstice at them. My teeth. The teeth that resemble a graveyard where actual teeth are buried. My teeth: the unlucky horse-shoe, the slashed seats in the stalls; the brown cornflakes in the packet. Not so good my teeth but, four years ago...dazzling. What happened? Two things: red wine and bruxism. Which sounds like a Club of Queer Trades song. I suffer from a medical condition called bruxism (street name: teeth-grinding). It sounds harmless enough but the constant erosion of my teeth from nocturnal gurning has left my molars looking a coastal granite shelf. At night I pop in a gum-shield like a dozy boxer. I should have a spitoon by the bed. The red wine is fairly self explanatory. Added to the fifty cups of tea I drink a day and you have a fairly sound basis for my butterscoth smile. I may as well have a plaster stretched over my mouth. I mean they're not Martin Amis bad but put me in a smock and you've got yourself a relief simpleton!
Kelly is very keen on me to get them sorted. My body has taken a bit of a pounding over the last four years and it's becoming increasingly difficult to lick me back into shape - there are no takers on that one. I'm aging in dog years, time-lapse dog years and something needs to be done. She'd like me pretty again. I'll give it a go.
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On the way back from Heathrow on the train. An elderly woman gets on at South Kensington. She is dressed from head to foot in fur (she even appears to be wearing fur trousers). She looks like a cross between Joel Grey in Cabaret and Edith Head. An attractive Asian girl opposite me leaps up to offer her a seat (note that I don't). The old woman isn't having it. She insists but the old woman is adamant: she's going to stand. Neither one of them seems willing to back down. They stand either side of the empty seat in a standoff until the Asian girl gets off at Green Park and the old woman immediately sits down in the seat opposite. She smiles at me.