Cold start

London in winter is grey and wet and miserable. As I walked from Paddington to Oxford Circus this morning I could hardly imagine how I’d coped with living there when I was younger. But I was younger then, and dumber, or not aware of any other way to be. Now, softened by exposure to tropical heat and continual sunshine, perhaps I could never be any good for it again.

I’ve got a cold, or an allergic reaction to Europe, but either way my nose drips constantly like a badly adjusted tap and I feel dreadful. But then who wouldn’t feel dreadful at this point? My hotel, a small place on Hallam Street, a short walk north of the office, is a little grim, the bathroom smelling of damp and misery, the hallways long and gloomy like a cutprice version of The Shining. At least I got to see family tonight: my sister came up after work to see me and we swapped presents – her birthday present for some magazines and books for La Serpiente. We went to a pizza restaurant around the corner where I had a drunken date once: huge photos of Sharon Osbourne and other celebrities adorn the walls. I scoffed pizza, lost the ability to talk, scuttled back to the hotel, and my nose, it dripped, nay, poured down my face. Roll on tomorrow.

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