Blurry because, well, we’d all been drinking…

It’s a little after noon here in Seattle and a brilliantly sunny day. Which is confusing, because my internal clock believes it’s still night time, dark time, noisy cheerful pub time in Yorkshire (or London, or Whitby, or Hull).

I went to the pub a lot. This picture was taken about three days into the visit. I talked to a lot of people: my father, my sisters, my nephews and nieces, my aunt, my cousin, my ex (and her partner, and their two kids), some friends of the science fiction persuasion, my agent, the drummer from Janes Plane whom I hadn’t seen for nearly thirty years, two women I bumped into in the street outside a cafe whom I hadn’t seen in longer than that… And a very great deal of it occurred in bars. About ten days into the trip, feeling liverish, I totted up the drinks and concluded I’d been averaging about five pints a day. UK bitter–Tetley’s, Timothy Taylor’s, Caffrey’s–is a bit lower proof than the stuff here, but it was still an enormous amount on a regular basis.

As ballast, I ate a lot. In Yorkshire it was mostly liver (delicious) and fish and chips (if you ever get the chance to go to Murgatroyd’s, in Yeadon, jump at the chance–and, yes, they serve beer). In Hull it was Indian food. In London drool-worthy Portuguese-influenced fish (mackerel, sardines, anchovies).

I can’t possibly tell you how many cups of tea I drank. In Yorkshire it was builder’s tea: strong enough to make you tremble, harsh enough to strip the mucous membrane from the lining of your gut and hot enough to melt lead.

I’ll tell you more over the next few days. For now, I’m happy to be home.