Thursday, 24 October 2013

Banana's, Orange Juice and Death Threats (Europe 1991 Part 2)

Each Tennis player no matter what age , has his or her own 'ritual' regarding diet , pre and post game routine or fitness schedule . In Europe 1991 my breakfast routine was simple , bananas and 'Oranjina' (orange juice) , very different from my touring buddies' diet , their's was coco pops . I was looking for 'that edge' as my standard was not as high as Brett and Pete , so any little advantage was going to be of benefit to me . One morning at a Formula 1 ( low budget European accommodation ) i could not locate my staple diet  , my concern was that the other two had eaten and drunk it . After spending many days and many kilometers in a car small enough to be a toy that you could place on your mantle piece , the sense of humor was not where it was when we first arrived on the other side of the World . I remember vividly threatening to 'kill' at least one of them unless my breakfast was found , can't remember what the outcome was but no one lost their life that day.....
Driving to Tournaments in a very small vehicle with 'Le Car' written on the side of it left us open to many elements , not just abuse, big trucks behind us were always a concern that we may have ended up as part of their cargo , 'Le Car' was a daily 'character builder'. I don't know why but i was always relegated to the back seat , no respect for the 'senior' tourist , but i let them know i was there. One day as Pete was off 'in fairy land' with his singing i asked a polite question 'any chance you could shut up thanks Pete ?' Darryl Braithwaite 'The Horses' was really starting to wear thin . This was Pete's favorite song , he had his headphones on and he simply played it again and again and sung it over and over. I gave him the chance but he didn't take any notice so i did what any bloke would do , leaned through from the back seat and smacked him in the ear , threatened to kill him if he didn't shut up . In a car that lacked a radio , silence for the rest of the trip was golden . 
At a truck stop Brett and i discussed the idea of leaving Pete on his own as he went to the toilet , my theory on the whole thing i felt had merit . Peter was taking up valuable room that my Tennis bag could use and in turn would free up my leg space in the backseat of a car that i was prepared to set fire to at any opportunity and look at public transport . Our concerns however  were, 'what will we tell his folks back home'? So we waited until Pete finished his 'business' and carried on in 'the Tardis' . 
When travelling in Europe i felt it necessary to speak 'European' but Pete had a bad habit of saying Town names as he read them when reading maps. One sticks in my mind in particular , a town named Mioux . I was adamant that this was to be pronounced 'Mow, as in Cow ' , Pete had other ideas , he called it Me Ox , this was the final straw . I not only threatened to kill him again unless his 'etiquette' improved but i also made a point of letting him know that his haircut was starting to get on my nerves . (Small Car Syndrome) 
At a Bakery one morning Pete actually 'lost it' with me and in fact threatened to put me 'six foot under' , from memory ,  I still don't recall what i did to upset him that day , probably the fact that i was still breathing ......
Such a pity we didn't have 'You Tube' back then , I believe our fortune wouldn't have been made on the Tennis court , but on the internet.....

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