Monday, 30 November 2009

Ballad of a boot boy

I am sat in a Northampton hotel desperately trying to write a speech for this work thing I have to host at half seven in the morning, in a different hotel, close to the M1, that I can't afford to stay overnight in. I can't even find solace in a bottle of wine tonight because I have to concentrate for an hour in the morning. Life isn't sweet.

Me and Northampton have form. I lived here for three months once in the mid-90s, and had the worst time ever. I didn't really quite realise how much it'd affected me until I got off the train, walked through the town centre and spotted a few buildings I vaguely recognised. If I listened to Belle and Sebastian's 'The Boy With the Arab Strap' album - a record that I will forever associate with Northampton bus station - I might have one of those proper breakdowns I hear so much about.

A quick straw poll of friends revealed that parts of Athens, Aberdeen, and (of course) Scunthorpe made other people feel like this.

Shining brightly across from my hotel window is a neon sign that says 'Northampton's best kebabs', or something like that. I might have to find solace in some dubious lamb-based product.

Actually, one bottle of wine won't hurt, will it? Thank heavens I have the Afternoon Naps album to keep me company.

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