France was shit mate. Could tell it was gonna be shit when I got on the plane and it was full of fucking Frenchies.

Got there on the Tuesday. Clare meets me off the plane. Drop me stuff off at hers. Get straight out on the piss. End up in this bar, completely mullered. She’s telling me about this guy she’s been seeing. Already got a girlfriend – so he’s fucking her around, basically.

“Oh, he’s not really like that,” Clare says.

“Bollocks,” I say. “He’s a ballbag. Trust me, I know, cos I’m a fucking ballbag. He’s fucking you around, end of, and if I see him I’ll rip his fucking head off.”

So she starts giving it all “Oh, but…” and I’m like, “If we see him, don’t introduce us. I’ll rip his fucking head off.”

Anyway. We’re there drinking in this bar – and I was fucking shitfaced mate – and this fucking cunt comes in, doesn’t he. Some Australian cunt. Introduces himself. I’m saying nothing, just bogging at him the whole time. End of the night, we’re walking out, he says something about I’ve been staring at him. So I fucking go for him don’t I. Doorman pulls me out but I fucking go for him again.

In the end this cunt fucks off. Clare’s fucking booing, like, “Oh, you had to get involved, you shouldn’t have got involved,” and I’m like, “Clare, you know what I’m like. Don’t ever fucking tell me what to do. Anyone tells me what to do, you’re basically telling me to do the opposite, cos that’s what I’m gonna fucking do.” So I just walk off, left her to it.

See these girls up the road. Whip me fucking French out, don’t I. “Oo eh le discotheque,” I say, giving it some of the old John Travolta. They’re laughing. I just wanted to get fucking bladdered mate. Go to the fucking club on me own, I don’t fucking care.

Nowhere’s fucking open though is it. In the end, found meself this nice little car park. Had a kip in the corner of the fucking car park. Starts getting light, this little old French fella comes across the car park. Didn’t want to scare him though, so “bon-jore” I says. He just walks past.

Found this stairwell; had a kip in the stairwell. Fucking luxury that was. Had a piss up against this slope. The wind’s blowing over the fucking slope though, innit, so I end up with piss all over me fucking jeans.

Wait till it’s proper morning, then I phone Clare. Tell her I’m coming back to get me stuff. She’s there getting ready to go to work; she’s got a class to teach.

“You don’t have to go,” she’s saying.

“I’m gonna go,” I says. “Give me the numbers of whoever you want and I’ll ring and apologise so they’re all right with you, but I don’t fucking mean it and I’m fucking going.” And I fucking went.

Find this hotel. Drop me stuff off and just think “Right, I’m gonna get back on the fucking piss.” This is about eleven in the morning. Go into this bar to get a beer.

“Une beer please,” I says.

“Oh, we only serve alcohol with food,” she says.

“I’ll have some food then.”

“What would you like? Is there anything you don’t like?”

“I’ll have whatever you want,” I say. “I’m not gonna eat it so just give me whatever you‘ve got.”

Ended up with a fucking orange juice. But I just could not be bothered to argue with her, so I drank this fucking orange juice and went. Ended up pissed in the hotel bar.

Next day, go to find a hostel cos it’s cheaper. Dropped me stuff off and went for a shit in this hostel. No fucking bog roll though is there. So I’m walking around fucking France, shit up me arse and piss all down me fucking jeans. I just got rat-arsed again. Got chatting to this bloke in me dorm, another Australian, ended up drinking with him. He was all right.

Next day I thought “fuck it, I’m going home.” Flight’s booked for tomorrow but I thought fuck it mate, I’ve had enough. Go to the airport, try to book a flight over the internet. But I haven’t got any change for the computers. So I go up to this café and ask for some change. Miserable fucking cunt he was too. “Parlay voo anglais?” I says. He shakes his head. “Change?” I say, and he says “Yoo aff to buy some zing.” So I say “Give me the cheapest thing you’ve got.” He gives me this little coffee. I take the change, just leave the coffee there on the fucking bar.

Flew back to Stansted. In a right shitty mood the whole way home. Sitting there in me jeans covered in piss, hungover, no fucking money. Load of fucking shite mate.

Get back into Stansted, think fuck it, I’ll go see me old dears for a few days, just fucking chill out. That was all right. Got pissed. Got laid. Saw me mate and his little boy, took him to football practice, then came back down here last night.

Yeah, that was all right. France was fucking shit though mate. Knew it was gonna be shit before I even fucking went.

(C) Martin Cornwell 2011