28 April 2007

Kiss me, I'm Scottish!


Phew. I’m glad this week is over. These last few days were full of disaster.

I’m in Glasgow, where a Glasgow Kiss is a head-butt; Haggis is a Sheep’s heart, lungs and liver boiled in its stomach; Black Pudding is a sausage made with congealed animal blood; and a Ned is a Non-Educated Delinquent - a young working-class male who dresses in casual sports clothes and fake Burberry, who engages in hooliganism, loutish behaviour, underage drinking and random stabbings.

Whilst covering here for a few weeks I’m staying in my employer’s tenement apartment while he’s on holiday. Tenements are rows of adjoining apartments – built up several stories and built across as far as the eye can see.

Late on Wednesday night the circuit cut out to all the lights in the house. I didn’t bother sorting it out during those wee hours of the morning so I waited until the next day to flip the culprit circuit-switch back on. But every time I attempted to do so the house alarm went off, blaring a whiny siren throughout the whole neighbourhood - and being in a tenement house that means it’s wailing through about ten apartments at maximum volume.

As my employer never uses the alarm he found no reason to inform me of the deactivation code. So until he responded to my urgent message regarding the deactivation code I’ve had to leave the circuit off and suffer without light. Unfortunately, it seems that same circuit is also responsible for the boiler and consequently any hot-water. So without a shower, I was now beginning to stink.

In an attempt to make the most of my late start at work the following day, I stayed up until 3.30 a.m. watching TV – the power to which was uninterrupted. But I received an 8 o’clock call from the clinic requesting emergency cover for the associate who had very recently taken ill – and who usually starts practice at 9 o’clock. Not anticipating the early morning wake-up call I had woken up suddenly and abruptly, jolting my neck and subsequently developing a severe wry neck. Following a cold shower, a cold shave and a mad dash to the clinic, I was just about to enter the premises when I received a time-delayed, voice-mail message informing me that I was not needed in clinic until 11 o’clock. And after a long and gruelling day at work I went past the We-Never-Close Supermarket to discover it was closed. So seeing that I had no groceries left at the apartment I ate bread-crumbs and ice-cubes for dinner.

It wasn’t until two days later that I received the deactivation code via text-message. Everything has finally returned back to normal, except now the neighbours think I am burglarising the house – which of course I am.


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