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Around the World in 80 Days

Day 61: 24 November

Michael Palin - Around the World in 80 DaysSleep in half-hour bursts. The ship feels like a tormented soul tonight, shuddering, quaking, tossing and turning, teeth chattering, as the rolls become steeper and longer. Up the hill one minute and down again the next. I nod off only to be woken moments later by a swingeing change to my centre of gravity, or the sticky heat of the airless cabin, or backache from the semi-foetal position into which I've concertinaed my body. When I do sleep I fall into a vivid dream of home. Clear details of collecting my mail from the Python office (which has added to its staff a lot of young men in red braces), hailing a taxi and at last turning into the street where I live. A hundred yards from my front door I wake in the middle of the Pacific. A warm glow of anticipation and happiness vanishes instantly to be replaced by frustration, then resignation, then backache.

There is a crash and the sound of breaking glass from the Dayroom. I totter through expecting to find a carpet awash with Johnnie Walker Black Label, but fortunately it's only a couple of glasses that have broken free of their moorings. Later, on the bridge, the captain is apologetic about the boat's behaviour.
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  • Series: Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day: 61
  • Date: 24 November
  • Country/sea: Pacific Ocean
  • Place: Pacific Ocean
  • Book page no: 199

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