There was something large, ugly and unpleasant lurking in the gardens. Good King Hal being devoured by a Triffid.
Croseo i Cymru! Or something like that. Your latest missive, hot off Caxton's press begins with your King in West Wales, trying to convert the natives unto the sheer delight of wearing tights. The working part of my sanctuary at my parents involved me giving a talk to a Probus Group at the Cliff Top Hotel in Gwber (pronounced GOOBER - I love it!). The only people who knew the King was going to appear, aside from my parents and my lovely Sister Sue who came along for moral support, were the President of the local Probus group and her treasurer. Well not wishing to deafen you with self trumpet blasting, I went down a storm. The lovely group seemed to really like me, which was fantastic and I even got some old boy in the front row, who bore a more than striking resemblance to former Polish President Lech Walesa, to laugh so much he had to take a break halfway through. He was a God's gift to a comic as his laugh came out as a loud grunted snort, very much like someone doing a loud pig impression. When he first did it I urged him to give it a bit more choke and it would have started. And no, before any smart ass says it, he wasn't asleep and snoring. I had a lovely lunch in the hotel with the group after the show and then went back to my folks for one more night.
The following day I was on my way back to Somerset, but the journey took a lot longer than expected as the east bound M4 was shut due to a big smash up and we were diverted off through various tiny villages, most of which seemed to be experiencing road works. Well, I say works. What you mostly saw was miles of traffic cones, an occasional parked up lorry with three navvies either asleep or reading The Sun in the cab, or if you were really lucky, one of them outside, listlessly swinging a pick at the tarmac before pausing to scratch his arse or light a cigarette. It was a stirring sight.
Back home at Somerset I found myself on the Saturday listening to Danny Baker's Show on BBC Radio 5 Live. He has been doing an ongoing feature about people's experiences of lower league Scottish football. This seemed too good an opportunity to recount him my journey to Stranraer with my father a couple of years back, and a shameless opportunity to plug Good King Hal on national radio. Well, I got on air and had a chat with the sainted Mr Baker, and what a lovely chap he is. He even laughed at some of my appalling old Henry VIII jokes. What a gent.
My dear old friend Ali Bessell came over on Saturday night and we drank wine, put the world to rights and watched the old Tim Burton movie "Ed Wood" with Johnny Depp. What the hell was Johnny Depp doing in my flat??? But it was lovely to see Ali again - why is it when you have such a dear friend you only get to see them once in a blue moon? Life can be cruel like that.
On the Sunday I went over to Barrington Court to see Matthew Applegate and thrash out the final dates for my Henry appearances at the court house this summer. My first walkabout is this weekend on the Sunday, so come and say hello if you're in the area. I drove home and watched my beloved Manchester City thrash Chelsea 2-1 in the FA Cup Semi Final. Knowing us we'll lose to Wigan in the final now... Just my luck at the moment.
Back to being Henry on the Tuesday morning with a first visit to Walliscote Primary School in beautiful downtown Weston super Mare. I had been booked by a lovely lady teacher who had originally seen me when she had brought her class from Ilton School to come and see my open day at Barrington Court with Shepton Beauchamp and Barrington School, all those years ago. She had remembered me and recommended me to her new school. It was only a morning, but a great one. One of the friendliest nicest schools I have visited for a long time, charming lovely teachers and some great kids. Really a wonderful, wonderful morning. We finished just after midday with a ear bending jousting tournament that, surprise surprise, the ladies won - again! Our score goes to:
GENTLEMEN 12 - 21 LADIES
This is now getting embarrassing. The poor old gents just don't stand a chance these days. The rest of the week is quite Barrington oriented. I am possibly going over to the Court House on Friday for a photo shoot with a local photographer from Ilminster, and then as I mentioned earlier it is my first official Henry walkabout of the season at Barrington on Sunday. Please come along anyone who reads this - the King would be delighted to see you. And now a quick quiz for anyone who reads this blog this far - the blog title for this entry - which British rock group had a famous song of this title? Song of a Baker? Let me know if you know the answer.