Waking up with ‘Wichita Lineman’ blaring out of the radio while sun beats through the bay window… that’s what I signed up for. That happened on Friday, and was the start of my recuperation from a ghastly bug that laid me asunder from the gleaming streets of my new city all of last week. When you lie in bed there’s nothing to do but think, especially if Orange haven’t put your internet in like they promised to do. You wonder and wonder and wonder about all sorts of nonsense. Like had Jimmy Webb written ‘Wichita Lineman’ today, would he have called it ‘Wichita Assistant Referee’? Ah boom, and indeed, tish.
Yesterday there was flooding in our flat; well not our actual flat thankfully but in the building. It’s the kind of happenstance that makes you realise what Bono meant when he sang “well tonight thank god it’s them instead of you”. We found evidence of water on the first floor trickling from under a door, and then more dripping from the ceiling onto the ground floor. Instantly we became paranoiac, turning off our plumbing and heading out into the sun hoping the finger wouldn’t be pointed at Johnny Rosbif. After much panic we did raise the alarm. As it transpired the source was the gay couple in the flat next to us with the yappy dog. Proof that you can be too clean. Obviously commiserations to all concerned, I’m just glad we weren’t hit as I’m ill-equipped to deal with anything more challenging than buying a banana or ordering a Coke Zero at the moment. Right now I’m limbering up to open a bank account, just you watch my smoke.
I look at jobs to do here and they talk of “papers”. What sort of papers? I’m an EU citizen surely, can’t I just march in and take all the jobs? I also looked into the prospect of, God forbid, signing on for a bit should the money run out. And guess what? It’s not nearly as easy as you might think. I would hazard a guess that the thousands of Romanians and Bulgarians winging their way to the UK with the sole intention of bleeding the welfare state dry next year might face hurdles more insurmountable than the disparaging looks from Britain’s army of Daily Mail readers – as scary as those might be – and might just be in for a little shock. Anyway, have no fear, I have things up my sleeve. Mostly skin and hair, and veins and stuff.
I’m thinking of opening a restaurant for starters. I’ll decorate it with my Instagrams of Parisian street art I keep putting on the internet enthusiastically like some tragedy in a baseball cap worn backwards. Where am I going to open this restaurant you’re probably wondering? In my underground cave of course. I shall call it: Le Cave. I know what you’re thinking, ‘what do you mean, your underground cave?’ Just that. There are lots of these under houses in Paris apparently, where people store stuff or make their own wine. Oh, ours might look a bit Josef Fritzl right now, but with a lick of paint, a dining table from Ikea and some of those miniature candles it’ll be an intimate dining experience like no other. Actually, it’ll be a bit like The Little Paris Kitchen only this will be even more intimate. So intimate in fact that should you have more than four people in at once then you’ll be forced to sit on each other with your face pressed against the sweaty wall. Even the kitchen itself is so cramped that right now le chef (me) has to get on a stepladder to take stuff out of the oven. True story!