In the Village...yet again.

But this time, the real one.

Day One

After another one of these nightmare journeys (I seem to be developing a habit of choosing the trains with the longest delay, just as one always chooses the queues at supermarkets that move along the speed of a snail on tranquillisers) and a taxi ride for free, with my own taxi driver happily chatting away all the way from Machynlleth to Portmeirion, I felt really knackered and just went to my cottage, dropped everything and just had a good, relaxing look out of the window - when suddenly the phone rang.

Eargh! It nearly gave me a heart-attack, as I'm not really used to people calling me in my room. But it was not Number Two (or was it?), it was just the woman at the reception asking me when exactly I would like to have my dinner today (yes, no working breakfast). And guess what's on the telly right now? "Arrival". How fitting.

Just had this excellent panoramic picture - view of the beach (The Beach) on my left (bay windows...BAY windows...hehehehe) and Rover on the Beach on the right on the tv. This evening I was being followed. I had had dinner (really posh) and was enjoying a pipe (hobbit that I am sometimes) of cinnamon tobacco when I noticed this man coming out of the "Angel". He followed me around. Which is rather spooky in the dark. I sat down under the Colonnade, and he finally approached me and said "Sorry, I was just checking whether you were a bloke in a skirt or a lady smoking a pipe", said goodnight and left again. Why, thank you very much!

Day Two

Hm...the headline of today's Guardian: "Rover faces oblivion". Poor thing.

This morning I had my own private waiter (I still don't know his name, I thought it impolite staring at his badge) asking me how I was, how my night had been, and whether I did not also think that this was a really beautiful day. So much enthusiasm at 8 in the morning.

Yesterday's dessert was "Trio of three puddings", and some bloke next table said something about rather having "Trio of three exotic dancers" to the head waiter, who turned slightly red. The richer they get, the worse their table manners are.

When I got the paper this morning and went back to my cottage, a nice man asked me for the way. My, they take me for a local already!

Hm. I can't keep my tv from playing muzak and I don't have a fridge...er...maybe I should try the remote control instead.

And then there were those people I met this afternoon. I was merely walking around doing nothing (well, watching the scenery), when someone yelled "Number Six!" behind me. Boy, I shouldn't have taken Stuart with me, I think. But luckily, they were just making fun of themselves and weren't yelling at me. I think.

Oh, and I have a personal maid. Very nice woman. I told her it was okay to clean my room now and I would wait outside, which made her very happy (she gave me more cookies), and she just put me in the other flat of the cottage to wait with my cuppa tea.

Oh, and the sun's shining...finally. It was raining like mad last night. Oh yes, and I had a private local minibus-taxi getting me to a chemist...to buy...some...er...personal hygiene products. I even managed to blush while asking the receptionist for a lift to town. Bad timing. But everyone is so friendly here. Maybe I should go swimming in the pool? I am mad.

I made friends with a cat this morning. I was talking (meowing) to him - he decided to lie down in front of my open window. Black cat. Finally, when I got my camera from my bag - he vanished. Never trust a man. Even the four-legged variety.

Got a bad overdose last night. My dinner reservation was at 9, so I spent the time watching four flippin' episodes of "The Prisoner". Completely off my head.

Right now I'm talking to birds. At the outlook, that is. As long as no Rook comes up to me trying to plan his escape. Er. There is a rook sitting in the tree next to me. He's looking at me. But, alas, it's the feathered kind of rook (some kind of crow, that is). Luckily, I should say.

Day Three

I had some Chinese tea with lemon this morning because I was too awake for coffee. Two eggs. But hey! no bacon of course. Visitations of another Six, I think. But at the moment I'm not even half as rebellious. I could just lie in the sun and doze off. My personal maid wished me another nice day. She's a really kind person. Still don't know her name, though. But the woman at the main reception desk, who I have never seen before, knows my name...er....

There was a robin that came up to me a minute ago. I said "tweedeeteewt!", and the tiny thing answered. Probably a friend of yesterday's rook. Yes, I'm sitting there again, only occasionally disturbed by some tourists. I don't know what's so funny about me, but some of them laughed at me.

Eargh! I almost fell off the flippin' wall I was sitting on! A helicopter! Run! Er...sorry, just getting nervous. But I really shouldn't. Such a tranquil sunny beautiful BEAUTIFUL day it is!

I did do some other interesting things on this day, though - went to the beach after having spent ages sitting on a wall in the sun - we don't want to get sunstroke, do we? So I went to the beach and had a sit-in, having fun rolling around in the sand and taking funny photos of myself. I felt a bit like Rover, frolicking along the beach. When I went back I got wet feet. Stupid tide! I pretended it was fun hopping up and down in the water. Then I went to the Stone Boat and sat there for a while frightening some people because I was sitting inside and they didn't immediately see me...tourists.

And finally I had some Earl Grey, Hot (ooops, wrong one!) on the lawn in front of the Old People's Home, I mean the Hotel, er, served by the bloke from the bar who looks disturbingly like a fair-haired version of Stuart - eargh!

Before I went to the beach, I had a cathartic moment. I went outside my cottage and heard something. Sounded like some flippin' Village music. I went to Number Six. I could hear it clearly. I got a coffee and sat down behind the cottage. Then I watched a brass band playing, yes, Village music at, yes, the bandstand (where else?). Happy people were sitting everywhere listening to the, er, lively music. Evergreens Village style. A very cathartic moment, especially when they actually played the triumphal march from "Aida"! It didn't help my reputation that the only thing I could say was "Fickdiehenne!" And then I had to tell some English housewives that, no, Patrick McGoohan has not been dead for ten years.

After dinner, I passed out. Honest. Did I say something about sun-stroke? Got one. I had a Prisoner-Cocktail and some wine and no other liquid...dehydration for sure. When I wanted some coffee for dessert, I suddenly felt weird. I could not look straight anymore, there was some kind of whooshing noise in my ears, and I felt like I was going to be sick. So I asked for the toilet, got up, actually almost reached the loo, but rather leant against a wall instead, because, frankly, I could not go on walking. One of the waitresses asked me whether everything was all right - I said "Yes" and passed out. Great scene for sure. Next thing I know is that I am sitting on the floor halfway across the dining room with three or four people around me looking worried. I got up on a chair, and somebody asked me if they should get a doctor or get me to a hospital. "NO!" I said, "No doctors! I'm fine!" Some weird kind of reflex. Someone then took me to the toilet, but after splashing some cold water into my face, I suddenly felt better. My guardian waitress said that I already looked better and led me out again. I went to the lounge and finally had my coffee brought there, and everything was fine. I still suspect they put something in my drinks.

Day Four

This morning I got up early and went to breakfast at 7.45. Nobody in the streets. Absolutely empty. The sun was shining, but no one was to be seen. I could hear my own footsteps on the pavement. Eerie. But my shower had been working fine this morning, and there were actually people at the dining room...luckily.

I visited Heulwen at Number Six before I left (she really knows me by now) and told her that it would be a rather long journey home and stuff...

Then I got my private Japanese minibus to Penrhyn station. The driver kept talking to me, a really friendly bloke ("And this is the Hospital, er, the castle! Harharhar!")

Well, after 45 minutes I was back in the Village.

I told Heulwen that they wouldn't let me escape when I came back. Well, my train had failed to turn up, so I had to find a phone and they took me back. For good measure, I went to have another coffee sitting outside and thinking of Stuart. Before I finally went back and got a train home. At least I think I'm back home again.

(280400-010500)

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