I arrived out of breath from hurrying up the hill.

“The LTLP’s not well,” I explained. “She was fine, then had a really funny turn and felt all faint and had to lie down in the dark. You couldn’t pop in on her, could you?”

“I suppose so,” replied Mrs Short Tony, who had her coat on to walk back home.

“That’s great. She could probably do with a bit of company.” I turned to the Well-Spoken Barman and ordered a pint. The bar was packed on Saturday night but I found a slot between Eddie and Short Tony and we discussed the bowls situation.

This year my loyalties are being shared between two clubs which, given my bowls ability, is a bit like two underground cocaine and S&M parlours competing to secure the services of Sister Wendy Beckett.

The ‘I’ll only play if you’re really really really really short’ conversation that I’d had with Nigel from the Friday night league had turned into a request for ten pounds for my subscription by the time that particular match had ended. And on Sunday morning we were due a try-out for the Village team itself – a club with the twin advantages of a) being just a very very short walk away and b) having a bar.

There are a few people who I don’t know in the Village team, and whilst they all seem extremely nice and pleasant people, we agreed that it was very important to give a good first impression, and perhaps not arrive with a stinking hangover, bleary-eyed and reeking of stale beer.

I always try not to be too predictable when I write this thing, so I think I’ll probably just tail off there. It was terribly nice weather at the weekend, wasn’t it?

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