I shrugged my shoulders; only one thing for it. I gave the window a gentle shove and allowed myself a glimmer of hope as the frames bowed in the centre. One hard push and they swung inwards. "Well, that just happened" I thought, and with a furtive sideways glance I climbed onto the sill and swung my legs inside.
"Beryl, get involved, we're racing the hens. Come and choose one." B10 pointed to the living room floor where 4 ceramic hen ornaments were lined up on the rug. I staggered over and gesticulated to a white hen with its neck low to the ground, the head cocked inquisitively mid-peck. Then somehow, in selecting my racing fowl, I managed to knock its head clean off its neck.
So we were going to need superglue.
But superglue was far from our minds as the six of us headed to the train station around lunchtime the following day. B10 had managed to mobilise us for a cultural trip to Rouen, which was about an hour and a half away by train.
Approximately 20 minutes outside of Rouen, the situation escalated. I curled into a ball across 2 seats and shut my eyes, willing the waves of nausea to subside, while Welsh made a beeline off the carriage as soon as we pulled into the station, on the hunt for a toilet bowl to rest his head on.
Resembling very much a hooded vagrant - always 20 or so paces behind the others, hunched over, feet dragging and with the pallid complexion of someone existing off a diet entirely devoid of nutrients - I eventually made it outside 'la gare'.
Slumping to the ground against the steps to an underpass, I waited for the group to assemble. I had to tell them I couldn't go on. The pain in my head was excruciating, walking was like traversing a bouncy castle and the prospect of my superhuman inability to vomit being a lie was fast becoming a likelihood.
To be continued...