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Around the World in 80 Days

Day 59: 22 November

Michael Palin - Around the World in 80 Days'On the 20th November 1988, A.D., at 20.20 hours GMT I, Michael Palin, crossed the International Date Line on ye goode shippe Neptune Garnet, and was humbled before the King Neptune, Great Ruler Of The Seven Seas, and thus accepted into The Brotherhood of Mariners.'

Except that I'm not accepted yet. Signatures have to be secured from both the King and the High Priest before the certificate is valid - these can be obtained at a separate ceremony this evening.

The evening ceremony turns out to be also a party for the Professor. Forfeits abound, and in order to get my signatures I have to impersonate a sexy model, a pregnant woman, a housewife and give a display of breakdancing.

It's a very good party, attended by all except the two crew members on watch, and many games are played, a tug of war is pulled, which I'm sorry to say the BBC loses this time. The Professor reveals there is no end to his talents by singing a song in Russian to his own guitar accompaniment, and Saatchi having endured the afternoon with great dignity produces his guitar, and plays a long and rather mournful rendition of 'Hotel California'.

A day to remember, however much one might want to forget it.
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PALIN'S GUIDES

  • Series: Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day: 59
  • Date: 22 November
  • Country/sea: Pacific Ocean
  • Place: Pacific Ocean
  • Book page no: 197

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