When Odysseus finally staggered to the gates of his home city, after a journey that could be reasonably described as fairly hellish, his old dog rose and greeted him warmly before pegging out at his feet.
We returned from our travels deep into Englandshire to be ignored by one cat, abused by a second and hissed at petulantly by a third.
Had Odysseus been a cat man, he would have spent another 10 years wandering about the Med rather than face that level of feline distain and downright aggression.
The Grumpy Yorkshireman and I can report that England may still be a green and pleasant land, but it was pretty difficult to see under the low-lying cloud and persistent rain.
In fact, given the amount of fairly relentless precipitation we endured, I am confident that the land will be even more green when the sun finally hits it. Come to that, so will the people, since this level of dampness is bound to encourage the growth of algae on pale, waterlogged skin. Trenchfoot is one thing. I’m willing to bet Trenchface will be trending next week if we don’t see the end of the deluge soon.
Ah well, nobody goes on holiday in Britain for the weather, as we are all fond of saying. And we didn’t. We can’t. He’s from Yorkshire. They don’t do sun.
In fact, all strong sources of light can be dangerous, including standing too long in front of an open fridge door.
We ventured forth in Liverpool and Bristol dressed appropriately, but let’s be honest here, people, this weather is biblically bad. Snow and the new tax year should never go together.
The clocks have gone forward. We sacrificed an hour’s sleep for this nonsense.
Down South and up here there are shops with swimsuits in the window. At this rate we’ll need wetsuits as we hastily build sandbag walls to keep the rising tides at bay. Lidl were flogging inflatable canoes last year. Guess who’s bitterly regretting not snaffling that bargain?
B&Q are selling barbeque sets in the wild expectation of the weather improving. We might need them when civilisation collapses soggily because of the damp and the shops run out of bread. Again.
The only thing we’ll be able to do is barbeque the cat. I am, of course, joking.
Should the brutal choice fall between eating mamma or the cat, I know my kids would be looking up sauces for a tough old bird.