To paraphrase the proverbial Irishman's foreplay, brace yourself, Marseille, I'm coming! Two days of the same event I attended last year that gave me my first glimpse of the way the rich and powerful tick pleasantly along. Looking forward not to it, per se, but to Marseille. I won't have a vast amount of time to explore the city, aside from where our event will be shuttled to - another series of beauty spots, judging from the brochure - because though I'm staying in town afterwards, it will be on the water for my first foray into sea kayaking. Fuck, I'm excited!
Especially since if we move to Australia I think my hitherto-unstarted sea kayaking days will end, because yesterday I saw this shark attack/fatality chart in the Economist with its absolutely disproportionate-to-the-population numbers for Australia. I could probably imagine a worse way to die if I concentrated on it but there's something awfully unpleasant about the thought of having one of those things swimming around you and your last moments being caught up in the idea of 'will I bleed to death, or have my head bitten off, or will I just drown?' Australia is weird, man. You have the sharks that eat people, and then the crocodiles that eat people, while Canada is so much bigger and the only thing that eats people there are polar bears, and they're totally where I don't go.
Anyhoo. I'll be on the Mediterranean, which is so polluted that I doubt anything but the aquatic equivalent of cockroaches can survive, and so full of tourists thrashing around like injured seals and hapless Africans desperately making their way to unfriendly, racist post-colonial shores in flimsy leaking boats that even if a hungry shark does stumble through the straits of Gibraltar I doubt a kayak will be the first thing she sinks her teeth into. But we'll see. I'll try to update over the next couple of days to keep things in perspective but on that score as well, we'll see. The next two days of work, despite the luxury, will be difficult in more ways than one but I think I've thought up a couple of ways to deal - one of them so clever, so Machiavellian and yet so morally tidy, and so very Memento, that when I thought of it I yelled 'yeah dude, I rock!'
Thankfully at the time I was in the gym completing my rowing machine ordeal, so nobody noticed, as my gym is full of people shouting exclamations about how awesome they are. If we do move to Australia, I'll get my exercise kayaking on the crocodile-free rivers instead of at the gym - less onanistic screaming.