I started the last post waxing on and on about there being no stores open in London past working hours. This was a constant theme over four years, the inability to acquire anything when needed.
We Americans don't like to wait. This is why we have refrigerator's large enough to store a gored ox, we don't feel the need to stop by the market on a daily basis. Plus, we want to ensure that we have plenty, the market may run out of something when we need it most.
Especially cheez whiz.
My friend Rich, was flying in to the UK, as was my Mom. We were coughing up some serious cash for all this to happen, not to mention the expense of living in London.
The price for participation in the London Rally was supposed to be about fifty or sixty pounds a person, included dinner at the Chamber of Commerce Clubhouse, drinks on Puncher and Champagne breakfast at Puncher on the Sunday morning, with "Bacon Butties" making up breakfast part.
Bacon Butties are usually English Bacon, butter served warm on a baguette. Sometimes, some Brie will be slipped in there, very tasty.
The Wildebeest version is called a "Bult" which consists of any kind of bacon, tomato and mayo. The lettuce is UA.
Back to the tale.
After the expense of our guests, we asked Norman Hummerstone, the Host of the Calais Rally, if we could pay the cost of two dinners but that we would skip the meal and make other arrangement's for our boat's crew.
The real reason we were skipping dinner (we could just put the cost on a credit card) was that my friend did not have a jacket and tie. Absolutely no chance in us finding a Men's Store in short notice to get a jacket and tie.
Remember the stores are closed.
After we arrived at Calais, we checked in with Norman at the club on Friday night. He quietly pulled me aside (This is a large almost eighty year old man of quiet dignity) and says, "I expect that your guests will join me for dinner, tomorrow night."
"Thanks, Norman, we have to decline, one of our guests does not have the required jacket and tie, sorry". "Also, we did not pay for them."
"You will bring your guest's just the same. Make the Gentleman look presentable." Norman was making a pronouncement, not a discussion.
Well. That was indeed, that.
More to come!
Hey... Good On Norman! The jacket and tie thing can get real old, real quick.
The gift of quiet dignity...gives me goosebumps. It is that kind of "power" that is most attractive [to me] and in my experience, never abused.
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