Sunday, 9 September 2012

A Week in the Life of a Curate, Day 6


No one can imagine meeting the entire family Roaring all at once. It's like suddenly finding yourself in the Spice Girls movie, but they're clever. (Disclaimer: the Spice Girls may be clever; I've only ever seen them jumping around.) Fortunately before confronting extreme girl-power I had a quiet morning with the FT - the best paper of the week. I actually woke up on time for once with a cacophony of alarms probably waking up the street, all before some sweet George Clooney coffee sent me into the brave new world of outer London. The trains were a mess and I had to run off one train half way through the Old Testament lesson. The Common Worship app is well suited to unpredictable train journeys. After a quick cuddle with baby Roaring, on arrival, it was to St Mary's to drop off my church's vestments - Roaring's church's have gone strangely missing in the last twenty years, the legacy of wicked evangelical ministers. Roaring ran through bits of the mass with me providing tips and applause.  By our return Family Roaring had arrived and there was a lot of whooping and hollering. Baby Roaring and I went out to sit and in the sun. She casually gnawed a bone. The good news is that I'm back in Mother Roaring's good books as I have painted over the enormous wine stain I left at Roaring's first ordination, so I was allowed to share a taxi to St Nicholas. The service was lovely. Lots of singing - the highlight "And Can it be" with the excellent lines " 'Tis mystery all: the Immortal dies; who can explore his strange design?". The hands went down, the oil went on. She arose Roaring, priest. The after-party was all very jolly - tea and cakes - and what fine cakes! But no wine. Disaster. In protest I gobbled down three magnificent cupcakes with splendid icing. Dinner was marvellous but the return home predictably took an age. Emerging at Marble Arch I was greeted by hordes draped in Union Jacks literally singing at the tops of their voices such classics as "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" with a bit of "Oggy, Oggy, Oggy". At first I thought it must have been revellers after the closing ceremony for the paralympics, but a neigbour informed me that this is tomorrow and these were all coming back from the Last Night of the Proms. So many parties... Evelyn Waugh would have been impressed - nearly naked parties in Hyde Park? With sunburn? He almost mentions them with his Vile Bodies. Unfamiliar to him, however, in Hyde Park tomorrow Cold Play will be singing Ricky Martin's classic Livin' la Vida Loca. It will be tough to pull myself away to Roaring's first mass but friendship will have its sacrifice. Having changed and settled down to X-Factor before bed, I was interrupted by an "exuberant" Mr K. fresh from reading bits of his new novella attempting to let himself in but instead double locking himself out. Eventually he got in with the wondrous gift of a priceless Cafe Helen's Kebab for each of us. I'm sure I must have mentioned these before, but they are simply the most delicious things on the planet. We settled down to second dinner with a glass of wine. Mr K. spoke poetically, as he always does, but that's because he's a prose poet. It's much easier. He'd recently seen some pre-digital age photos of us when we lived together and was horrified at how fat he was that year - repeating several times that he actually looked like Boris Johnson. I reminded him that he used to get up at midday and have a pasta snack breakfast laden with cheese, and that in the evening we'd eat a large domino's pizza each, a feat neither of us would manage or even dare now. We talked for far too long until eventually the looming threat of Sunday demanded retiring for the night, slipping down to the cave sometime around 3.30am.

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