Apologies for any greater than usual levels of incoherence you might encounter here tonight. I appear to STILL be drunk. I have had no alcohol since last night, when I had two small glasses of wine. Something is wrong here.
If my friends weren't a respectable pair of solicitors with three children I would suspect them of spiking my drink last night, because I have been Drunk Drunk Drunk Staggering Incapable Inappropriate for the last 36 hours, which, even being something of an appalling lightweight (for reasons explained here), is a hell of a result for a bit of Shiraz.
I arrive home last night (at around 8, this was hardly a wild night of debauchery, even by Brussels standards) and collapse on the front step snickering hopelessly, slapping my cheeks ineffectually to try and restore some feeling to my numb head. Have to make CFO put the children to bed. Fall onto the sofa weeping and eating dry crackers and watched an hour of grave, doom laden, sensational Channel Five programming about HEADSHRINKING which I find endlessly, inexplicably hilarious. I spend the rest of the evening staring into space, eating chocolate buttons and signally failing to go to bed at an appropriate time.
I head off, late, panicky, ill-equipped, with a bag full of craft supplies, small stones and dinosaur posters, to Paris to renew Fingers passport and finally meet the other half of my brain, blog regular M. First stop (after walking painfully four times round the Place de la Madeleine looking for the wrong street whilst determined not to make like a tourist and ask): the British Consulate, where, to my horror, I am required to hand over my handbag to the security guard.
"Euh, il y a des sciseaux. Et, euh, désolée pour le reste" (*)
Then I watch in horror as, snapping on his rubber glove (in this case an entirely appropriate precaution) he handles several disintegrating leaves, a bag for picking up dog crap, a box of cheap crayons, several items of Bonne Maman packaging, some pieces of Kinder toy and a child's sock. (M, please confirm I am not exaggerating the contents of my handbag)
I go to WHSmiths and spend ten fruitless minutes looking for glue, apparently thinking I have been magically transported via some secret trapdoor to the Liverpool Street Branch (for future reference: they don't have Pritt Stick in Paris WH Smiths).
Then I go and sit on the steps in the Tuileries and fashion a rudimentary puppet out of creme caramel packets, sellotape and googly eyes brought expressly from Brussels for this purpose. My brain twin turns up without her puppet. I look ridiculous but I don't care as FINALLY, I have my hands on small Fimo models of dinosaurs.
My brain twin and I follow the ponies in the Tuileries round, sniffing their delicious pony smell, like demented freaks. We photograph a snakeheaded fairground ride and a giant bearded animatronic gorilla and I get in trouble from a vielle dame for having leaf mould on my arse. I get my foot stuck in two grates. Because I apparently believe M actually does share my actual brain I tell her terrible, disgusting things, appalling her into silence as we stomp around Paris acquiring cakes. Expressions used include: 'tumour donkey', 'cock stump', and 'unusually thick, spongy layer of skin'.
I read French Elle sex tips in wide eyed fascination on the train home whilst shedding crumbs from a gigantic macaroon all down my front, sharing a table with three Japanese tourists. When I go to the loo and look in the mirror, I realise my nose is powdered and sticky with icing, like in a scandalous paparazzi shot of some coked-up starlet.
I CHEER when the right tram turns up on my platform. Metaphorical winds whistle around the Gare du Midi as the commuters stare blankly at me. I pretend it was the teenage boys standing next to me, and turn and stare at them. I fear it is not convincing.
I am unable to assemble the cableage, wherewithal, or mental faculties to upload the priceless photography that should accompany this post. Instead it will, I hope, serve to illustrate Dr Capybara's incredibly bad tempered advice column tomorrow.
Note: Although Dr Capybara's casebook is already extremely full for this week, if you have a particular pressing, embarassing, or otherwise entertaining problem for him to deride, do put it in the comments.
(*) Er, I have scissors [Eds note: for puppet making purposes]. Sorry about .. the rest.