We were just catching up on a few things. Like the appalling sporting weekend I had just endured. Wins for Wigan, Leeds, Wolves and Australia. I don't really mind Leeds winning. Chris said 'Should have gone to the betting shop. You'd've got 15/1 for all those. Earned yourself £100.' He didn't learn this from me, though the thought was mildly attractive. But you can't bet against your own side simply for a few pieces of silver. Can you? I'll wager Jeremy wouldn't.
Thoughts then turned to haircuts. We both use the same guy in Holmfirth. Decent lad, just getting going, lives in Holmbridge. Just about to employ an apprentice. How brilliant is that? I've just been to see him and Chris was about to. 'Costs me £5', I said. 'Costs me £8', Chris replied. 'How come' I wondered. 'I've got more hair than you'. B-bum, quick as a flash. Obviously; price based on hair volume, not age.
ps. I always pout and grimace without my teeth in
pps. We are supporting Ireland - apologies to A.&R. Carrick
Brian Close was and still is my hero. He and Fred Trueman kept me going. They were aggressive cricketers and not frightened to say what they thought. Even when they finished up in the soup. They somehow gave me permission to be socially inept, say the wrong things or not say anything at all in a sulk. Years later, I met Brian on a campsite next to Ulleswater in the Lake District. At the bar I thought, I recognise that voice. It reverberated round the whole room. He was sat with a bloke who played the penny whistle. Even more years later he opened the cricket archive at the University of Huddersfield. He told me he used to go to the lakes regularly with Ian Botham's parents. Play a bit of golf at Penrith. He was losing his memory for names a bit, but still a colossus. His brushes with authority, England and Yorkshire, beggar belief.
Nos's 40th birthday celebrations produced a gathering of former Almondbury Casuals, including these three who just about squeezed onto the bench in front of Thongsbridge CC pavilion: Dave Walker, Greg Smith and Sam Stier.
The Casuals were formed in the 1950s and played friendly Sunday cricket until quite recently when players began to find other things to do with their time. A sad end to an institution which gave a lot of people a lot of pleasure.
My son Andrew has become a regular at the Red Lion in Heckmondwike. It's a basic spot with tolerant well-informed landlord and lady. Most customers are familiar with Andrew now and he is included in their banter and events, including Jordan's 18th birthday bash. Quite where he was drinking previously is not known. And bash is the right word - a physical as well as musical experience.
Needless to say Andrew enjoys his heavy metal nearly as much as he enjoys beer. And we were relieved that he has found a safe haven, for now.
Bus from Ramshill. A stroll on Filey beach after a coble coffee. Ignore the Primrose Valley route inland and you could struggle. Hunmanby gap is a long way from Hunmanby so you need somewhere in between. But it's all private or so the signs say. Trespass. Up the old Butlin's path, right into wilderness, through a small gap in the razor wire and steel fence, and you're into the Haven tat, pardon my judgement. But, you may need assistance to find the way out. Lovely lunch at the Original Oak.
Check the times and still it doesn't come. The bus stop query phone number doesn't work. Back to the Oak. A man at the bar offers us a lift, downs his pint and picks up a walking stick. 'Mind the dog hairs', he says. We had other passenger things on our minds. 'That bus stop is way out of date. You need the garage. The land is not private down to the beach. It's something that troubles the locals.'
Filey bus station. Our lift limps into Tesco. We join a man in the queue who doubles as the talking timetable. 'Where do you want to go? You've just missed it. The x20'll be along in 10 minutes. Do you want to come back?' Two buses for Bridlington come and go.