On the train home from the Lake District, we had to share a carriage with a group of boisterous Irish football fans, who were filled with joy that Ireland had just beaten Bosnia 6-0 and felt the need to share this with us for four hours.
After the fifth bawled rendition of the low-lying fields of Athenry, where once we watched the small free birds fly, HEY BABY WATCH THE FREE BIRDS FLY!!! (it has to be heard for the experience to be fully understood), I phoned Alec and ranted loudly about how he came from a nation of drunks and how his fellow fucking Paddys in my carriage could just take their small free birds flying and stick them where the sun don’t shine and the fucking birds don’t fly. He took it like a man. The people sitting around me (fellow victims, that is, not the minstrels) were a bit rattled.