Friday, 13 February 2009

Comic Relief Number 3 - For Laura & Charles

A slight case of insomnia tonight. I think I'm just excited at having raised £25 already! Thank you and please keep it coming!

So, here I am in Paris. It's been a dream of mine as long as I can remember. We got here this morning, fought our way across from the airport by bus and eventually found our hotel. Lovely place but I don't suppose we'll be able to afford the mini bar. Still, it's a treat. And after all, it's a special occasion. Where else could be better to take the missus for your Silver Wedding? She wants to get our pictures painted by one of those artists by the Seine tomorrow. Perhaps we can get them to leave a few of the wrinkles off, though! Barbara calls them laughter lines and there's no denying we've had more than our fair share of laughter over the years. Luckier than most, I suppose but then I was born lucky; came from a long line of lucky people too. The only one who wasn't so lucky in my family was Bob, my brother, I bet he wished he'd swapped his sink plunger for something else but that's another story. We've left Bob and Reading far behind, forgot all about work and everything the moment the plane took off and we watched the rooftops get smaller and smaller below.

We've never been on a plane before, always stuck to the ferries and went to the Isle of Wight most years. We were going to go to America for Bob's wedding and then he went and did it in Las Vegas so we didn't get to go. What a mistake that was! Apart from all the grief over that, I was gutted not to make the trip. That's why it's all the more special being here now.

Look down there. See? The little cars and their lights are like Dinky toys. Barbara's clinging on tight to the railings. Mind you, she's not as fit as she used to be so it might not be the height. She's not used to it like I am. I can't believe that they won't let you walk up the stairs right to the top. I don't mind lifts themselves, it's sharing them with other people I'm not happy about. I like my own space, space to breathe, to look down. Yes, now we're here, I can appreciate that it's been worth saving up for. All those weddings I did, dressed up in my top hat (like I wear that all the time!), going around kissing brides and shaking bridegrooms' hands like some idiot; it's all paid off. There's more to it that you think, you know. City & Guilds, a code of practice to stick to and knowing how to talk to people. It's mostly about prevention, like most things I suppose.

I hope Barbara's enjoying it. She's let go with one hand now and slipped her arm inside mine. She told me earlier that I still scrub up well, even now. What a great place the Eiffel Tower is! Where else would a chimney sweep come for his Silver Wedding?

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