a sunny and sprout free christmas
I tell you, it was tough.
The trip did not get off to the best of starts. A four hour delay at Gatwick (fog) and my father is not a patient man. Fortunately there is a Bar. Then, when we finally get away I am across the aisle from a drunk bloke who decides to sing carols to the rest of the plane. Its not good. But made infinitely worse by the knowledge that its my dad.
But once in Gambia, ahh. The people are all tall, slim, attractive and friendly. The service is poor to non existent and the power goes off regularly but it doesn’t seem to matter. The draft beer keeps running out (which does matter) and the food is fine, but not anything to rave about. But its 33C (with pleasant sea breeze). The beach has a reasonable scattering of pretty teenage Norwegian & Finnish girls and if the hornbills in the garden are a little noisy, well, it’s a fairly minor inconvenience.
The only down side is the liggers who insist on coming up to you and clasping a ‘friendship’ bracelet on your wrist, despite all assurances that you are a miserable bugger, require no friends, have no money, are allergic to cheap and tacky wrist bands, you arm is pinned and the dreaded band is attached. But don’t worry. It’s a gift ‘from the heart’. Its free. There is no obligation other than friendship. Then begins the tale of woe. I found that putting my face an inch from theirs and screaming I AM GIVING YOU NOTHING, NOW GO AWAY worked. Eventually.
But not with my new friend Simon. No, he gave me a genuine plastic fishbone bracelet that made me a member of his drumming band. No stings, no cons, Its completely free. I am a band member and all I need to do is purchase the band a couple of minor items. Like drums. A PA system. UK visa’s. No problem. I will just pop back to my hotel and get some money. Unfortunately I didn’t bump into Simon again. Possibly because I spent the next four days hiding in my hotel wardrobe. But rest assured, should I meet Simon again, say in the crown, I will honour my plastic fishbone commitment and waste no time in introducing him to the Wednesday evening acoustic club