There are no bookings in the studio for a few days, so Nelson is taking advantage of the situation and is coming up from London to work on his new album.
Audrey is not very impressed at the prospect of his arrival, however. She knows that there will be some drunken exploits occurring and she doesn’t enjoy watching me struggle with Nelson or with my own tentative hold on sobriety.
By way of recompense, I took her for and extra long walk this morning. But rather unfortunately, we were mugged by a flock of bees when we were about half way round.
Normally, I love bees. They are one of the treasured things that the English summer offers in such charming abundance, like flowers and scantily-clad females. And of course, bees produce sweet honey: a substance I could not live without, spooning it liberally on to my porridge every morning as I do. (I do not like wasps – they produce mustard and are generally quite disagreeable little creatures.)
One bee in particular developed a strong attraction to Audrey and would not leave her alone, buzzing hither and thither in an impressive aerobatic display around her head like an over-enthusiastic spitfire pilot in a WWII dogfight. It displayed an intense physical attraction to me, also, seemingly intent on having a close and very intimate airborne relationship with the pair of us.
For some reason, it just would not leave us alone. And please excuse me for using complex and sophisticated psychiatric jargon here – but it was driving me round the bend.
Audrey dealt with the situation very magnanimously by not obliterating the eager insect between her jaws – her usual method of dispatching such nuisances, and preferred instead to run around in ever-decreasing circles whilst barking excitedly and going spectacularly cross-eyed.
Eventually, its passion subsided and it decided to leave us in peace, returning to join its friends who were on their way to bee school or wherever it is bees go in the morning.
On our return to the house, I was reminded of something my grandfather used to ask me when I was a small boy.
‘Hey, Napoleon,’ he would say, teasingly, ‘what would you rather bee or a wasp?’
On the Fantastic hi-fi today:
Highway 61 Revisited – Bob Dylan
Parallel Lines – Blondie
Singles Going Steady – Buzzcocks