Thursday, 8 May 2008

Triple Whammy

I arrived in London broke a tooth, found the telephone and internet out of action and the capital being run by a man called Boris.

The tooth was a bore. Thankfully it was only part of a filling that dropped out and did not hurt, but crossing the Channel seems to do something to my teeth. I smashed one of my front ones on a baguette within hours of arriving in Paris years ago; not a good look. A molar disintegrated on a picked onion hours into my first cross-Channel hop last September and now I've an irritating cavity thanks to one of La Fille's secret cache of jelly beans. That'll teach me.

The telephone and internet were a double bore. The mobile doesn't work where we stay so no landline means no communication. When, eventually, I got past the BT recorded messages I spoke to an operator who kept banging on about their "obligation" being to fix it by the end of the following day. I asked if it could be done sooner, obligations aside: "The fault was reported only today so our obligation is to fix it by the end of the next working day, that is to say, tomorrow," she repeated every time I opened my mouth. It was like trying to negotiate with the speaking clock. It just goes to show the French don't have a monopoly on stroppy operators?

As for Boris, the city's new blond bombshell mayor and a Conservative toff...well, he has certainly upset the French who viewed Ken Livingstone as a kindred socialist spirit. The Mayor of Paris even hopped on the Eurostar to offer his support to Ken's campaign; I don't think it hurt his teeth but I'm not sure it did much for his credibility in France. I cannot say the prospect of London - and possibly the country - being run by former Eton schoolboys fills me with unconfined joy. I mean, they are not exactly real world. At least the tooth and the telephone can be fixed.

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