I have spent too many summer days in self-imposed exile, skulking in my home, working or watching TV or just doing nothing. I don't know why I have hidden from the sun, but as I walked through Hyde Park this afternoon on my way to a gig I regretted it. Even alone the parks are beautiful and calming and I liked the sun on my skin and being surrounded by people having fun. Why didn't I just come up here every sunny day and work in the sun? It's because I am a prick.
I was a bit annoyed that I'd stayed in the house til mid-afternoon watching the tennis (and attempting to update Twitter on the actual REAL point score, rather than the LYING system of games and sets). I could have come out with my phone and sat in the sunshine - or, as it turned out just gone to the gig where the game was being relayed on a massive screen. As the game reached its denouement I had in any case lost phone signal, but I got through security and entered the festival area just in time to see the last three points of the match being played (perhaps apt as I have always argued that these are the only ones that count), just in time to see the first male British winner of Wimbledon in 77 years - the first British man to win Wimbledon wearing shorts (though it disgusts me that Fred Perry won it in just his pants, or possibly without underwear with his knob hanging out).
My dad was born about a month after the last British male victory and is a big tennis fan. But finally he got to see a Brit win. I hope that my dad doesn't count it though and is holding out for an English champion. He might have a bit of a wait. But it will give him something to live for.
I wonder if Murray gets embarrassed that his mum comes to all of his gigs. My parents come to the occasional gig, which is nice, though can be a little disconcerting at times (dependent on subject matter). But if my mum turned up to every single performance I'd probably have to have a word. I'm a grown-up now, mum. You can't come to everything. The other players are taking the piss out of me.
I was glad to be amongst a big crowd as the historic win occurred. There were cheers and tears. I felt a bit sorry for Paul Young who was playing the main stage at this point and whose audience was diminished and who had to put up with massive applause and cheers at random parts of his set. Though later the gig I was doing would be up against The Saturdays, The Beach Boys and JLS so I knew a little of being upstaged myself. And having the actual Beach Boys (well a couple of them) singing "I Want To Go Home" whilst you're gigging might be the greatest heckle of all time. I've always dreamed of being up against The Saturdays, but not like this.
We had a reasonably fun gig despite all this. A drunk man stumbled in towards the end and decided to laugh sarcastically at everything that was said. I did point out how ludicrous he was to be at a festival with so much going on and then choosing to deliberately come into a small dark venue to attempt to ruin something that he didn't want to see. If nothing else the park was full of lots of beautiful men and women who he could attempt to talk to or seduce, but I reasoned that he was probably too hideous a person to do well in such bright sunlight and so had to come and skulk in the dark until nightfall. I wasn't entirely sure why anyone would choose to see comedy when there were so many outside delights to be had, but we had a reasonable crowd throughout the evening.
And when I got home my wife had returned from Norway. Which was almost as good as Andy Murray winning. But not as good. But if my wife stayed away for 77 years then I might have appreciated her return even more than the tennis.