“Sae whit the fuck happened the-day whit the pasties?” asked Jimmy.
I began jabbering again, apologising profusely, and moaning about how I hadn’t brought an alarm clock with me. They made me squirm for a bit, then asked why I hadn’t used the alarm on my mobile phone.
I was forced to make more pathetic excuses. It must have been painful to watch. I promised them I wanted to learn as much as possible, and vainly hoped that would be the end of the matter.
Jimmy changed tack. He was enjoying himself thoroughly.
“Sae whit exactly dae ye dae?”
“I’m retraining as a chef. I gave up my job as a journali...”
The word slipped out before I could stop it.
“A fuckin joornalist! Sae ye went intae cookin' fur th' poppy!” he chided.
“Do you still write anything, Mr Nash?”
The office manager was eyeing me suspiciously. She was one of those scary, orange-skinned, public school girl types...
:: This blog eventually became a bestselling book, called Down And Out In Padstow And London by Alex Watts, about my disastrous attempt to train as a chef, including stints at Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck and Rick Stein's kitchens in Padstow.
You might like it if you're a foodie or have ever entertained the ridiculous idea of entering the padded asylum of professional cooking. It's here on Amazon as a paperback or Kindle book if you want a read...