I was just home from work from yet another day/night of turkey shuffling and drink humping and was feeling grouchy. Belligerence oozed from every aching pore. The Cousin greeted me with his usual face of wariness and apprehension. He likes to wait for a moment to judge my mood before fully engaging me in conversation. Now, as I was threatening the kitchen door and swearing at the kettle and anything else that I deemed to be getting in my way he correctly assumed that I was in a less than favourable mood. I really am a joy to live with.
or fucking not
This mood was due in part to my being utterly shattered and in no small part due to the last two guests I had served before I left. They wound me right up, and I was already so tightly wrapped it was gonna take very little to set me off.
"Can we get two sweet sherries please?"
Sweet sherry? That'll do it. And at that I crossed over from being slightly tired and emotional to being angry and combative.
Their simple request was met with a terse, "Sweet sherry? Yeah we don't do it."
"No sweet sherry Niles!"
Okay they weren't the Crane brothers but they may as well have been what with the way they went at the wine list and compared it to wine lists in other establishments. Was I not in the mood for this carry on. And you know you are in for a rough ride if the first thing they ask for is sweet sherry, especially if they aren't 65 year old women. They made do with a bottle of Bordeaux Supérieur 2005, obviously. Seriously the last thing I needed after a rather elongated and ball achingly annoying lunch service was two foodies out to pick holes in the carte de vins, as the portlier one kept saying.
I wouldn't mind but they were from Cavan or Monaghan or some other shite border town. Since when did they get so uppity and full of themselves? Ah the bog trotters appear to not only be able to stand upright but order wine too, cunts.
By the time Finbar and Niall, as I had taken to calling them, had considered, scrutinized and ingested three courses of late night supper I was fit to be tied. I approached them with a huge beaming, and obviously forced, smile hoping against hope that they were done for the night. But alas no.
"Some port would be wonderful", said Finbar
Zeebrugge sounds about right, I thought.
"Yes, sir some port it is" , I replied with a heavy heart.
It took another half hour for them to finish two small ports. But eventually they finished and did the right thing and fucked off home to fill in their journals and score their dining experience on one of those god awful internet review sites. Democracy is such a frightful bore. Who do these people think they are coming into a restaurant at night and ordering food? Sake. It took me about 2 whole minutes to clear and set their table and phone the wonderful people at Fon-a-Cab to come get me.
So there I was standing in the kitchen with The Cousin staring at me from behind the fridge as I muttered threats at most of the kitchen appliances for not working quick enough or too quick. He, as I said, was judging my mood and then hit me with,
"We have a problem." That invariably means I have a problem.
"WHAT? What fucking now?"
"Eh the heating boiler thingy-ma-jig (he is as technically gifted as I) is spewing out soot and black smoke."
"And...", there was fear in is little bloodshot eyes.
"And? And fucking what?"
"Next door's kitchen is covered in it."
"Right......" I continued making a cup of tea and uttered a violent threat at the toaster for not toasting quick enough.
".....well there's fuck all I can do about it right now." And I shuffled off to bed leaving the cousin cowering behind the fridge. I am such a complete asshole sometimes. Sometimes.
In the end I got no sleep as I pondered the joy that is phoning the landlord. And how would I deal with the new neighbour? She was probably quite miffed, justifiably so, seeing as her kitchen was now coal mine than cooking room.
It's all too much. I don't respond well to adversity when tired. I did phone the landlord who greeted my call with his usual long pause which left me none the wiser as to what he intended to do. The house is baltic and if it hadn't been for a quickly delivered bottle of wine, chocolates and xmas card the relationship with her next door would be frostier.
Seriously I cannot wait for January and the expected slump. I'm gonna sleep for a week only waking to shout at something, probably The Cousin or the toaster.