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Saturday, 20 March 2010

Guardian All Ears 20th March

(Article by Michael Holden)
The baggage carousel was once the final circle of holiday hell, a last chance to consort with you fellow travellers before normality resumed and all the strange vacation liaisons faded. Nowadays, people who meet on holiday have the option to haunt one another across the Internet for the rest of time. Good luck to them. The carousel though, especially an empty one that isn’t rotating, remains an arena for strange conversation. While a plane load of people muttered and found ways to blame New Labour for their lack of luggage, two men in their sixties recalled the previous night’s entertainment.

Man 1 “Some of the dancing was quite impressive.”

Man 2 (setting him up) “Yeah, but you’ve seen one whirling dervish…”

Man 1 (accepting gladly) “You’ve seen them all!”

Man 2 “That said, the second was much better than the first. He got up to full speed right away. There was no build up. Impressive rate of rotation-relative to the others.”

Man 1 “That belly dancer…”

Man 2 (lapsing into a florid-end of the pier-grin) “Big girl!”

Man 1 “Did you stay for the singer?”

Man 2 “No-she cleared most of the room-including me. At six pounds for a gin and tonic I need more incentive than that.”

Man 1 (poking at the bags that had started dribbling onto the carousel)“It wasn’t like she couldn’t sing.”

Man 2 (channelling the spirit of Cowell) “Quite. It was the wrong choice of song. Why come out with a soppy ballad? Better to have gone up tempo.”

Man 1 “Quite.”

Man 2 “That’s my bag!”

Man 1 (forlorn) “Good for you.”

Man 2 “I’ve got another one.”

Man (visibly cheered) “Oh, okay.”

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