The cats started to like me again, just in time for me to break their tiny hearts again because we were leaving for our holiday. Ah well, I think they will cope.
I had a day of catching up on admin and getting packed for the next two weeks. I was also hoping to knock off a couple of Metro columns to see me through the holiday. Other columnists might be happy to have "X X is on holiday", but I can't let my reader down. Also it's not the hardest thing in the world to write 600 words (as long as you have an idea) and the money I would earn would probably pay for almost two cocktails at my posh hotel. I got one done, but couldn't think of anything to write. I will try to do another on the flight, so that I can relax on holiday (apart from writing a daily blog - as always slightly tempted to take a break, but getting close to the 4000th consecutive entry now).
We have an earlyish flight in the morning so we decided to stay at a hotel at the airport. We did this last on our first holiday together in Sicily (though I enjoy the fact that I wrote those entries as if I was alone and asking a stranger to take photos for me presumably) and it turns out we were at the same hotel, the Hilton at the South Terminal. Unsurprisingly it's not a particularly glamorous place, with an odd air of despair hanging over it. It reminded me of a casino, atmosphereless and without many windows and oddly dingy. I had felt exactly the same thing last time I was here. You'd think that people about to travel the world would be excited and exciting, but even though there was a birthday party at the next table in the restaurant (a woman wearing a hat made to look like a cake with candles, but to my perverse eye it looked like it was lined with multi-coloured flaccid cocks) the invisible fog of gloom hung around here too. There seemed to be a couple of older men dining with much younger and glamorous partners (and I know I am not one to talk here, but I don't think these couples were married), which added a seediness that wasn't really required as the place stank of failure already.
But we were only there to have some food and get some sleep and be in a convenient location for the early morning plane. And we were tired enough to get to sleep fairly early, having also endured a slightly depressing ride on the Gatwick Express, over-crowded and delayed by someone under a train in Croydon. So we were haunted by gloom at every turn. Hopefully something we can shake off pretty quickly on the Amalfi coast tomorrow.