It’s Friday and the quiet has gone. Our pleasant idyllic evenings have abated for the weekend and been replaced with the raucous rasp of inebriated stags each trying to out do the other in volume, whilst relating stories that only they think are funny and most think are untrue, unless they themselves were present at the event. Many an alcohol laden breath speaks of exploits past, of dangers long since filed in the ‘great day’ file in their booze sodden brains.
Like the day they were naked in the town fountain, or when they drove across a roundabout at the top of the main road leaving town for London, and left a hole through the bushes. “Another tray of shots please barman”, came a voice from a table across from the bar.
Mechanical laughter impregnates the walls and glues itself to the beams only to fall later as dust to the floor around us and seep into the grain of the oak boards never to be heard again. Slowly the evening's noise reaches a crescendo of deafening proportions. At it’s peak it levels for a while and then staggers, step by step, to a more moderate cacophony. Still finding its way to small peaks on its way to the end of the evening, but it never falls to a comfortable level until the door is shut. With the doors finally closed their noise dies out as they disappear along the tow path.
Back on the boat more laughter spills out on to the canal and bounces along disturbing only the light sleepers close by. The moon has fallen from the sky and the ISS passes overhead. One by one the revellers fall into bed and the boat falls silent save for the occasional banging of the hull against the concrete piling as everyone seems to turn in their beds at the same time gently rocking the boat.