As soon as KA told me the date of her party I knew that there would be a problem. I had to be in Reading on that date. However, I arranged things so that I could call in at her flat on the day of the event just before I set off on my long journey south by car.
When I looked up to the top floor flat from the street I saw a “For sale” sign attached to one of the outside windows. It was now clear that I’d been invited to the reverse of a house warming party. How exciting!
Inside the common staircase and walls were coated with yellow gunge. I tried as carefully as I could but, even so, by the time I reached the top floor my shoes were caked in the vile substance. KA informed me that the gunge had not put off potential purchasers, and that someone had already offered to buy the flat.
I stayed at the party for an hour or so, chatting to the only other early guest. This was KMcM, an old friend from the Manor House at the University of Birmingham. Then I left for Reading.
It was along and confusing drive, especially with regards to bus lane priorities, but I made it and soon settled down to work at my destination. I had almost finished everything by 12:40 the next day, so at that point I rang TPR to ask if he was ready to meet me.
TPR sounded terrible down the line. My call had clearly woken him, and it sounded like he was hungover. He reported that he had a confession. He didn’t need to say any more: I knew exactly what he had done. However, it did come as a surprise to learn that his new love was Edinburgh Internet entrepreneur KH. I was not prepared to let him go easily and reminded him that I would be at his sister’s 50th birthday party next month, whether he liked it or not.