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Following Clouds

Following clouds proves to be a useless navigation method and now, buffoonishly behind schedule, miles in the air and caught in an updraft, I don’t know where we are. I warn the passengers that we might land in enemy territory and receive an unfriendly reception. The passengers are unconcerned; in fact, they fill the makeshift flasks I made out of spare balloon fabric with the Vintage Linkwood, Interleven, Ardmore and Clynelish Private Reserve, which I keep for such occasions, and offer toast after toast to all receptionists, however unfriendly.

Because landing behind enemy lines in a brightly coloured balloon is rarely advisable, I am surprised at their jollity, until they explain that they are seasoned commuters, and using English public transport is like being attacked by idiots, so they always expect a foul reception. This is excellent news as it means that I do not have to worry about the passengers. To celebrate, I open a barrel of Juan’s Special Reserve and cheering and singing ‘For he’s a Jolly Good Fellow’ at the top of our voices, we swing through the cloud-draped sky, as fast as we possibly can.

Professor Humperdink’s Diary