We took time out from our packing, sorting and chucking (how did we manage to accumulate such a vast collection of crap in just four short years?) to have a tipple or three with the winners of the ‘Spot the Gothic Pile’ competition that I ran in March. The winning pansy fans were chosen at random from two stacks of correct answers identifying Norwich Cathedral – one for Blighty and one for Turkey. Imagine my surprise when I learned that Niki from Suffolk (Norfolk’s southern sister) and Paul from just outside Kuşadası (but originally from Suffolk) knew each other? “Fix! Fix!” I hear you cry. Believe it or not, it was a complete co-incidence – honest gov’nor.
I had simply intended to post signed copies but Niki and Paul had bolder ideas. They had a pansy summit in mind, a liquid convention on our home turf. The dastardly plot was hatched and P-Day was planned. We met at Café S Bar, an unpretentious watering hole along Bodrum’s town beach where the rainbow flag flutters in the breeze next to the flags of all nations. Ozzie, the seriously fit convivial host dispenses charm and flirtatiousness in equal doses. At the height of the summer he strips down to his speedos and plunges headlong into the bay, tackle in hand, to spear the catch of the day. It’s done more to impress the mixed mob than to put food on the table. Alas, we’ll miss the brawny burlesque this year.
We made a good-humoured bunch – me and Liam, Niki and her beau, James, Paul and his beau, Nigel and their best Blighty Pal, Kiwi Cheryll. Kiwi Cheryll is a licensed sex therapist with a fruity tale to tell (just don’t ask her about the chocky-wocky do da story). Sensible Nigel and Cheryll sipped the soft stuff while the rest of us hit the sauce. What splendid people. After a jar or two, I signed copies of the book. Sadly, by that late stage in the game my scriblings had degenerated to illegible doctor’s scrawl and I’ve no recollection of what I actually wrote. Cheryll kindly bought the very last copy in my possession – another tenner for our half-empty purse. Four hours in the making, the P-Day Landings were a fun-filled finale to an epoch of epic proportions. Have we made the right decision? We think so but, watch out, one day Jack will be back.
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