Tourist: Good morning
Secretary: Oh good morning, Do you want to come upstairs?
Secretary: Do you want to come upstairs? Or have you come
to arrange a holiday?
Tourist: Er.......to arrange a holiday
Secretary: Oh sorry
Tourist: What's all this about going upstairs?
Secretary: Oh, nothing, nothing. Now where were you
thinking of going?
Secretary: Ah one of our adventure holidays
Secretary: Well you'd better speaker to Mr. Bounder about
that. (Calls out to Mr. Bounder) Mr. Bounder, this gentleman
is interested in the India Overland
(walks over to Mr. Bounder's desk)
Bounder: Ah good morning. I'm Bounder of Adventure
Tourist: My name is Smoke-too-much
Bounder: Well you'd better cut down a little then
Bounder: You'd better cut down a little then
Tourist: Oh I see! Cut down a little then.....
Bounder: Yes...I expect you get people making jokes about
your name all the time?
Tourist: No, no actually it never struck me before.
Bounder: Anyway you're interested in one of our adventure
Tourist: Yes I saw your advert in the bolour supplement
Bounder: The what?
Tourist: The bolour supplement
Bounder: The color supplement?
Tourist: Yes I'm sorry I can't say the letter 'B'
Tourist: Yes that's right. It's all due to a trauma I
suffered when I was a schoolboy. I was attacked by a bat
Bounder: A cat?
Tourist: No a bat
Bounder: Can you say the letter 'K'
Tourist: Oh yes, Khaki, king, kettle, Kuwait, Keble
Bounder: Why don't you say the letter 'K' instead of the
Tourist: what you mean.....spell bolour with a K
Tourist: Kolour. Oh that's very good, I never thought of
that what a silly bunt
Bounder: Anyway about the holiday
Tourist: Well I saw your adverts in the paper and I've
been on package tours several times you see, and I decided that this
was for me
Bounder: Ah good
Tourist: Yes I quite agree I mean what's the point of
being treated like sheep. What's the point of going abroad if you're
just another tourist carted around in buses surrounded by sweaty
mindless oafs from Kettering and Coventry in their cloth caps and
their cardigans and their transistor radios and their Sunday
Mirrors, complaining about the tea - "Oh they don't make it properly
here, do they, not like at home" - and stopping at Majorcan bodegas
selling fish and chips and Watney's Red Barrel and calamari's and
two veg and sitting in their cotton frocks squirting Timothy White's
sun cream all over their puffy raw swollen purulent flesh 'cos they
"overdid it on the first day."
Bounder: (agreeing patiently) Yes absolutely, yes I
Tourist: And being herded into endless Hotel Miramars and
Bellvueses and Continentales with their modern international luxury
roomettes and draught Red Barrel and swimming pools full of fat
German businessmen pretending they're acrobats forming pyramids and
frightening the children and barging into queues and if you're not
at your table spot on seven you miss the bowl of Campbell's Cream of
Mushroom soup, the first item on the menu of International Cuisine,
and every Thursday night the hotel has a bloody cabaret in the bar,
featuring a tiny emaciated dago with nine-inch hips and some bloated
fat tart with her hair brylcreemed down and a big arse presenting
Flamenco for Foreigners.
Bounder: (beginning to get fed up) Yes, yes
Tourist: And then some adenoidal typists from Birmingham
with flabby white legs and diarrhea trying to pick up hairy
bandy-legged wop waiters called Manuel and once a week there's an
excursion to the local Roman Remains to buy cherryade and melted ice
cream and bleeding Watney's Red Barrel and one evening you visit the
so called typical restaurant with local color and atmosphere and
you sit next to a party from Rhyl who keep singing "Torremolinos,
torremolinos" and complaining about the food - "It's so greasy isn't
it?" - and you get cornered by some drunken greengrocer from Luton
with an Instamatic camera and Dr. Scholl sandals and last Tuesday's
Daily Express and he drones on and on about how Mr. Smith should be
running this country and how many languages Enoch Powell can speak
and then he throws up over the Cuba Libres.
Bounder: Will you be quiet please
Tourist: And sending tinted postcards of places they don't
realize they haven't even visited to "All at number 22, weather
wonderful, our room is marked with an 'X'.
Bounder: Shut up
Tourist: Food very greasy but we've found a charming
little local place hidden away in the back streets
Bounder: Shut up!
Tourist: where they serve Watney's Red Barrel and cheese
Bounder: Shut up your bloody gob....
Tourist: crisps and the accordionist plays 'Maybe it's
because I'm a Londoner'." And spending four days on the tarmac at
Luton airport on a five-day package tour with nothing to eat but
dried BEA-type sandwiches and you can't even get a drink of Watney's
Red Barrel because you're still in England and the bloody bar closes
every time you're thirsty and there's nowhere to sleep and the kids
are crying and vomiting and breaking the plastic ash-trays and they
keep telling you it'll only be another hour although your plane is
still in Iceland and has to take some Swedes to Yugoslavia before it
can load you up at 3 a.m. in the bloody morning and you sit on the
tarmac till six because of "unforeseen difficulties", i.e. the
permanent strike of Air Traffic Control in Paris - and nobody can go
to the lavatory until you take off at 8, and when you get to Malaga
airport everybody's swallowing "enterovioform" and queuing for the
toilets and queuing for the armed customs officers, and queuing for
the bloody bus that isn't there to take you to the hotel that hasn't
yet been finished. And when you finally get to the half-built
Algerian ruin called the Hotel del Sol by paying half your holiday
money to a licensed bandit in a taxi you find there's no water in
the pool, there's no water in the taps, there's no water in the bog
and there's only a bleeding lizard in the bidet. And half the rooms
are double booked and you can't sleep anyway because of the
permanent twenty-four-hour drilling of the foundations of the hotel
next door - and you're plagued by appalling apprentice chemists from
Ealing pretending to be hippies, and middle-class stockbrokers'
wives busily buying identical holiday villas in suburban development
plots just like Esher, in case the Labour government gets in again,
and fat American matrons with sloppy-buttocks and Hawaiian-patterned
ski pants looking for any mulatto male who can keep it up long
enough when they finally let it all flop out. And the Spanish
Tourist Board promises you that the raging cholera epidemic is
merely a case of mild Spanish tummy, like the previous outbreak of
Spanish tummy in 1660 which killed half London and decimated Europe
- and meanwhile the bloody Guardia are busy arresting
sixteen-year-olds for kissing in the streets and shooting anyone
under nineteen who doesn't like Franco. And then on the last day in
the airport lounge everyone's comparing sunburns, drinking Nasty
Spumante, buying cartons of duty free "cigarillos" and using up
their last pesetas on horrid dolls in Spanish National costume and
awful straw donkeys and bullfight posters with your name on
"Ordoney, El Cordobes and Brian Pules of Norwich" and 3-D pictures
of the Pope and Kennedy and Franco, and everybody's talking about
coming again next year and you swear you never will although there
you are tumbling bleary-eyed out of a tourist-tight antique Iberian