Last Friday evening was one of those magical nights when all was right with the world. Which was great given it was on the back of a not great week.
But, after having finally gotten bank cards back, I was flush with cash (well, not really but I was able to at least BUY stuff without borrowing off other people) , the weather was balmy and I was meeting friends by the riverside.
As usual a shambolic system as we are incapable of managing time or location very well. But we eventually managed to find each other and after forcing our way past a load of young men who had managed to Bring You Own with two crates of Fosters and bags of Doritos, we found a place on a series of steps leading off a pub into the river.
The Thames rushed in eddies and whirls past us, reeking pretty much of refuse from the boat just downstream from us, with river boats flying downstream and literally chugging with effort upstream. We pretty much took a safe bet on drowning if any one of us was suicidal enough to try get into the water. Not to mention if you managed to not drown, inhaling any of the Thames would probably kill you more slowly.
‘There are three things essentially that float’, declared my friend wisely as we watched a box float by and wondered what was in it, ‘wood, and there isn’t a lot of it on this river, plastic and condoms, which are mostly just plastic.’
‘WHY on earth did you choose that as an appropriate subject to prove what floats.’
‘Oh, you know, my friend used to kayak along the river but tired of all the condoms that would slap him in the face when the paddle came up bring up debris.’
I’m not sure that was a true story.
What was true was at some point a police boat raced up the river at speed. It was yellow and blue like police cars and vans here. Inexplicably it also had a whirling light and a very loud siren, both of which were on.
‘What,’ I found myself asking, ‘Do they need THAT on for? It’s not exactly like the river is so crowded they are going to be weaving between a traffic jam of ferries, it’s a bit show offy and extreme, no.’
That’s me, cynical.
Other friend pointed this out to me on leaving, that I needed to stop grumbling as she knew I didn’t mean it but other people don’t always.
That’s what true friends are there for. To point out the good and the bad.
It was a good evening.
(Until I woke up in the wee hours of the morning with a raging thirst regretting the last half pint – oh wait, does that make me sound cynical and whiney again?)