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Around the World in 80 Days

Day 79: 12 December

Michael Palin - Around the World in 80 DaysAfter that London never recovers. It is like being back in the very pit of hell. At Oxford Circus the Christmas lights stretch away into the distance, and the Christmas spirit is similarly stretched. We attempt to film me buying a newspaper, to confirm my date of arrival, and are subjected to a volley of abuse from the vendor such as we've experienced nowhere else on the journey. When we do buy a paper, the front page is full of grim pictures of the Clapham Rail disaster, which had happened as we were docking at Felixstowe. (All of us were sobered by the thought that if we had taken the Le Havre-Southampton ferry we could quite possibly have been on one of those trains.)

We hurry through the crowds down Regent Street, and at five minutes to five, shabby, tired, rushed and ruffled I stand before the steps of the Reform Club, seventy-nine days and seven hours since I had walked down them to go round the world. Would love to have bought Passepartout a drink, but we weren't allowed inside.
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PALIN'S GUIDES

  • Series: Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day: 79
  • Date: 12 December
  • Country/sea: England
  • Place: The Reform Club, Pall Mall
  • Book page no: 255

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