It's 11.45pm on Tuesday, a couple of weeks after the Grand National, and I have heard that the horse I picked has just this minute crossed the finishing line.
I had already taken precautions and donated a fiver to the Benevolent Bookmakers Association for Spendthrift Gamblers in our local charity shop - the rather strangely named William Hill - and have to admit I was surprised when the lady I made my donation to insisted I fill in a strange, boxed form with funny names on like "Fire on High", "Paddy's Revenge" and "Squire of Normandy".
She than asked me whether I was tax or no tax. I quickly replied that I never drove my car without tax, despite my thoughts on the role we hard-pressed, motoring stealth-tax payers contribute to Mr Prescott's shopping and restaurant bill and the Speakeress of the House's taxi fares. And then she gave me back a yellow photo-copy of the form I had filled in. Strange indeed.
Thankfully, a rather well-clued local man (I assume he was local, if only to pad-out this paragraph), smelling delightfully of Woodbines, aftershave, with what I suggest was a faint yet delicate odour of alcohol and urine, slurring his words and sporting a rather bulbous red nose (the four features not, of course, necessarily in the correct order) told me "Arrrshhh hassshish garnarshar shellliby namnashsn" and then for some strange reason, he fell over.
I assume he was the manager of the premises and simply overcome with the excitement of all the good donors donating their money (well after all, that is what donors do, they donate) in this William Hill charity shop.
There were television sets on in the background of this charity shop, with films of horses running, dogs running, some running horses and some horse races as well. Not to forget some other horses. Some of the aforementioned donors were plaintively delighted as they cheered at the televisions sets, waving their fists and shouted "Come on you stupid nag with your b*stard short-ar*ed jockey ".
I did feel it was quite strange for someone as charitable as a donor to the William Hill cause to be able to ascertain both the parentage and height of a jockey by simply watching him out for a ride with his mates on TV. The 'shoutee' plainly knew something I didn't. However, I was disappointed at the diction, missing as it was various verbs, adverbs, conjunctions or even pronouns to render the sentence more correct. However, they were there for a just cause, helping that great charitable man William Hill.
So I mustn't complain.
I believe this horse canter I was involved with happens again next year in Liverpool, where all the people who went this year return to visit their hubcaps, and that there is also a charitable gathering at a place called Cheltenham, sponsored by a coffee manufacturer called Gold Cup. Not to mention all the other events. So I wont (mention them, because I said not to mention them).
I shall await with bated breath, or as my good new friend who is now waving his fist at some coloured golfing chappie on the William Hill television would incorrectly say, 'baited breadth'. (He seems to be suggesting the golfer is a 'cocoon' or 'Nigerian' or something similar. Very strange behaviour in a charity shop indeed!).
I look forward to making my donation again next year.