25 May 2011

The night belongs to me

It’s past midnight. The senior filth is still chatting at their table, still on their first round of pints. I have cleared all the other tables but one where the railway engineer is on his last pint and the Jameson he ordered on his last round. I made the Jameson a large as I hoped this would be sufficient to induce him to the land of nod. Their tables to clear and I am done. I cash up quickly relishing that desolate moment of a big bar past closing time. The bar spots are still on so it’s bright inside a windy and cold night. The night porter a big young Nigerian comes into his shift. As usual he begs me for his glass of Merlot. I can’t be tossed so I pour him a big one. He is the only interference to my solitude. Cash ups done, credit card payments reconciled, I make my safe drop.

Then I finally pour myself a large JD and shoot it down. I quickly lock the cellar and the bar fridges. Switch off the glass washer and then the dreaded but necessary sweep and mop up. As I am about to leave the marketing crowd on a workshop return from a night in the city. They beg me for Sambuca. All of them are the classic ‘short-skirted’ marketing women and I am easily persuaded to raise the shutters for them to line up shots. Needless to say their request for me to join them is easily accepted. They are all French. I am lazy to start up the main bar register and just get them a bill from reception. They’re staying in the hotel so I can serve them and make a room transfer for the Sambuca. The full bottle disappears magically and I suddenly remember my day routine that starts at 5.30am. I am a wee tipsy. They all insist on me coming from behind the bar for long French kisses, hugs and goodnights. We all have an early morning. They have invited me for their final nights party on Saturday. I graciously divert the drunken demand by informing them that I will of course have the pleasure of serving them from behind the bar. I do however smile to myself as I reflect on what my response would and should have been many moons ago!

I quickly wash and put away the shot glasses. The entire bar lights are switched off. My final task for the day is to seal the bars keys and sign them into reception. It’s past 2am now and really cold as I walk to an empty staff car park but for my car gleaming in metallic silver under the car park floodlights. Jump in car, light up, seat belt on and I peel out the hotel. The high streets completely devoid of humans or any kind of activity on the short drive home. A fox, common in my part of the stix runs across bathed in full glory by my headlights. Foxes in the stix are healthy and big, unlike the Foxes that slink all over the city suburbs in the dead of the night. The fox has a baby rabbit held tightly in its jaws and looks at me challengingly.

I am home. Too tired to sleep and niggled that I may miss my 5.30am ritual. Quick hot shower on full blast and I sit quietly on the dining table rolling a strong one. Long smoke in the garden. It’s past 4am now and summer beckons. Already far away I see the soft purple and pink glow of sunrise. Back inside I flop into bed for a quick nap. The dog protests as he is occupying my side of the bed.

I reflect on what a punter said last night. ‘You got to work as hard as you can while your body allows it’. True, and I guess in my case, as long as you enjoy it. For my body is long past its sell by date.

The gentle sandalwood waft of her perfume
She leans across the bar
Her long blonde hair brushes my face
I glimpse her cleavage
I see she wear no bra
Her breasts encased like two jewels
Pert, firm, round and proud
Trying hard to not stare
She turns around to ask what her friends are drinking
I am allowed to stare at her pert round bottom
Encased in blue jeans
A white lace thong threatens to peer through
I am a locomotive
Shooting through the night
Horn tooting
Lights shine brightly on the rapidly disappearing track

The day is but a necessity.

The night belongs to me.

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