Growing up, like many little boys, I dreamt of being famous. The shear thrill of being recognised everywhere I go. I took my shot as well but never quite made such heights as regular readers of this blog will know. And now that my son is very famous and is constantly recognised, I am more mindful of what we wish for.
These days, I am still recognised frequently but not with much certainly. Bemused looks are what I am now accustomed to.
I recognise that bloke. Why do I know him? Did I work with him? I’ve seen him before, but where?
Occasionally I am recognised for who I am and even less occasionally, I am asked for an autograph or a selfie, the modern day autograph. I am fine with this btw since my desire to become famous has waned long ago.
But there are occasions however, when I absolutely hope and want to be recognised.
For example, on passing through the passport machines at Heathrow airport this week on return from our family holiday.
You know how it goes… wait patiently in line with passport in hand. Get to the front. Wait for the green light and the glass flaps to slide apart. Glasses off. Cap off. Stand on the yellow footprints with passport inserted in to device and wait for the machine to make a decision.
My most recent wait was long. Too long and unnecessarily so, it seems, as my friends and other family members were allowed through by other less rigorous machines and accumulated in the United Kingdom as my application remained pending.
Come on, I began thinking to myself. It’s me!
“Surely, these sophisticated machines know who I am?”
Perhaps I should pull a grin and pretend to hold a microphone? Would this help?
And finally, the machine grants me entry. As though begrudgingly and with a sneer and a… “haven’t seen you for ages, pal.”
Returning from holiday is universally hard for us all whatever our circumstances because everything is relative – and doubts, fears and anxieties creep up on us all. The fear of what lies ahead? Bloody work for most of us and stuff to do. There will be mail to go sort through. The fridge will stink…
This misery is best typified by the baggage carousel – where we all stand, exhausted and await our luggage. Which in effect, is our washing – two weeks worth, so four/five loads at least… so carefully packed on our way to holiday and so unceremoniously slung in to cases on our return.
London today is wet through and so strewn across our house is laundry in various degrees of wet and dampness.
Still, I am lucky to be here. I might have died on that wretched quad bike – for those readers who kept up on my travails.
And yet I don’t feel very grateful. Because tonight I am playing The Comedy Store in London – my day (night) job – where the fears of dying are only too real and even more terrifying than being crushed by a bloody quad bike.
Welcome home everyone and onwards…