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Thursday, July 17

I was awestruck in the Post Office this lunchtime. The queue was not too long, which is unusual at that place. Three people in the queue, who clearly had never met before, got into a conversation about current affairs. One of them then turned out to be a comedy geezer - jeans, shirt, long beige coat - southern accent... he had a good shoulder twitchy thing to show how dodgy he was. Very entertaining viewing.

More shocking, though, was the fact that I was seen promptly, was suprisingly able to deposit a cheque into my bank account (saving me a second leg of my trip) and was even given a spare envelope for that purpose by the nice man who dealt with me.

Perhaps I was in a bizarre mood when I went to Starbucks for my icy coffee drink. A man was standing in the middle of the room - I said to him "Are you queuing?" - he looked at me blankly. I repeated. Then he said "I don't understand - I'm French." Immediately, I scoured my brain for the correct words to use to a French speaker. I said, proudly - "Are you waiting?"... and then pointed... that seemed to work (actually, I couldn't remember a word of French that seemed relevant) - still he obediently walked to the end of the queue and joined it. Shortly afterwards he then looked around as though he'd forgotten something and slipped out of the queue and out of the shop. Perhaps he hadn't been wanting to queue, but my forceful English manner had compelled him to stand where I pointed - against his will. Whoopsie.

I held my tongue as the lady in front of me bought a bottle of still mineral water and accepted the offer of a glass of ice to go with it. Think about it. The ice is not made of mineral water - it's going to taint the water you've just paid over the odds at Starbucks for... with normal tap water! You may as well have just asked for a glass of ice and waited for the warmth in the shop - from the combination of the sticky atmosphere and the steam from the coffee - to do its job and give you a similar, but significantly cheaper drink. I repeat. I held my tongue. After what I'd done to the French chap, it seemed best to keep out of it.

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