• 23 . 04 . 06
  • My time in Singapore couldn’t have finished in much a better way. As a special treat, Alan took me over to the Penny Black, a Victorian-style English pub, with real ale from the tap which was bested only by the plasma screens showing Liverpool and Chelsea’s FA Cup semi-final live. The pub turns into the […]

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Knocking On Oz’s Door

My time in Singapore couldn’t have finished in much a better way. As a special treat, Alan took me over to the Penny Black, a Victorian-style English pub, with real ale from the tap which was bested only by the plasma screens showing Liverpool and Chelsea’s FA Cup semi-final live. The pub turns into the local Liverpool clubhouse whenever they play and you couldn’t move for fans in red shirts chanting and singing. Knowledge of “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and “Ring of Fire” were practically requirements to get in the door. Watching football with other fans after such a long absence (we’re talking Euro 2004 with a few English ex-pats) felt great, especially as we managed to hang on for the win. I think Alan might have been worried that I was having withdrawal symptoms from Japan, so to celebrate the result, we went on to another place for a bit of karaoke.

Some time later, we finally got home, which left me a couple of hours to pack and sleep. There was a brief situation when I woke up a few hours later, when I thought I’d lost my passport, but luckily I found it and was then just left to contend with the problem of not throwing up in the taxi, airport and plane. It was a bit hairy at times, but I just about managed to keep it down.

Coming through Perth’s immigration and customs was nice and easy, although I did have to enter the ‘Something to Declare’ line because I was carrying a wooden item. When the inspector asked me what it was, she was a bit confused when I told her it was an Australian boomerang, made in Australia and given to me as a leaving present in Japan. Of course I told her it was just returning home and of course she give me the tight-lipped smile and snort that it deserved. This boomerang joke’s better.

A short taxi ride later and I was outside Chris’s house where I’m going to be staying for a bit. Chris and I lived together in Japan for about 6 months, before he finished to come back and do some more work at university here. Getting into his house was a little more difficult as he was away for the weekend somewhere down south. He had told his housemates I was coming and the door was open, so it should’ve been easy. I could hear someone inside but nobody answered and I didn’t want to just walk in unnannounced. Instead, I tried the most overcomplicated solution I could think of – connecting wirelessly to the Internet with my laptop so I could make a call to the house using Skype. Combining technology with trademark cunning, it was a plan that couldn’t fail.

After that failed, I went back to waiting for about 30 minutes before Sarah, another of Chris’ housemates, let me in, telling me I should’ve just walked in when I arrived. It turns out that the guy inside, Jon, had been playing videogames and hadn’t heard me. I’ve been guilty of that a few times too, so I couldn’t fault him! But anyway, I’m finally here, Chris gets back tomorrow, so I’ll be able to catch up with him then and then I can decide exactly what I’m going to do.