Funny how I find myself
Alone with you
In Iceland they’ve got this outdoor swimming lake that’s heated by geo thermals. They make a big thing about it but it’s quite pongy and disappointing actually. It’s a rotten thing to say but there it is. Sorry Iceland, but it’s true isn’t it?
There used to be an outdoor pool in every British seaside town. Arbroath had a great one, a big lido affair in white art deco concrete with ice cream kiosks and changing booths with saloon doors so you could see the girls’ pants coming down past their ankles. I think the kiosks sold toffee apples and candy floss as well.
Back then a small bottle of strange pop with a straw and a packet of salt ‘n’ shake crisps kept me happy for ages.
If I got two straws, so much the better.
The Clyde resorts were sub tropical in comparison to east coast Arbroath and our crisps and pop of a higher standard. At lunch there was always water and you weren’t allowed to dip your bread in the soup. The soup was never heinz tomato although I lived in hope. After lunch I was totally unsupervised. All the kids were. You ran across the railway line to get to the beach, the piers were all working piers with no handrails or anything gay like that, the rocks were lethal so we’d fish off them, they would hire you a motor boat by the half hour, on your own at nine years old, it took all your pocket money but was totally worth it. We were always standing on broken glass or rusty nails sticking out of driftwood or getting fishhooks stuck in our arms. All boys carried knives back then. I had a sheath knife with a tartan handle that I wore scout style on my snake belt. It had Red Indians stamped into the leather sheath. I was only eight or nine but you would have to have killed me to stop me wearing it. During the day everyone had factor a half Ambre Solaire rubbed on them and at night it was calamine lotion.
At night in the hotel for dinner, you had to be on your best behaviour which meant smiling and using the cutlery properly and keeping your mouth closed and your elbows off the table and not playing with your food even if it tasted funny and not staring at any old residents. You could tell the residents because they had hp sauce on their table at breakfast. Then you might be released to the arcade for an hour and more often than not it was off to see Johnny Beatty or Jack Milroy in some variety show. We saw Andy Stewart once which was as big a deal as Led Zeppelin.
What’s all this about? I’ll just tell you. I’m having a look through the archive. I’m clearing all statistical registers. Emptying the RAM. It’s full of stuff and if I don’t have a rake through every now and then, I’ll get Alzheimer’s and I won’t have any room left for the important things like this new blade geometry which looks counter intuitive but could increase efficiency by a full percent.
Tundra! That’s the word I was looking for. Never mind why. Yeah, tundra.