YESTERDAY lunchtime we spent having a few pints with the hells angels of Perth - highly amusing. The Carlton Hotel is a small distance from the ground and has become Barmy Army headquarters on match day. And to say it's a bit dubious is a real understatement.
The heavily-tatooed guys at the door looked ready for trouble if it kicked off. And at some stage some larily Brit tried to start a fight.
In steps Guy, 6ft 4ins, long goaty beard and drinking something highly questionable out of a brown paper bag. To be fair all the guy did was split the warring factions, then went back to his chosen refreshment.
Highly impressed, we got talking to him and a couple of his mates. Then Fred turned up. Fred was about as old as Australia, grizzly beard and even grizzlier face. He had just a few words to his vocabulary. In fact, he reminded me of Father Jack, the booze-addled priest out of Father Ted.
He seemed to think we were "Terrorists", having mistaken the word Poms for Bombs, and constantly told anyone who would try and engage him in conversation to "F*** off". We did, however, manage to get him to sing a rendition of God Save the Queen.
This all took place at about 2pm and when I passed the pub five hours later following an exciting first day's Test action in which Monty performed brilliantly (why hasn't he played before) some of the same geezers were still outside, drinking merrily away. I'm not saying they were heavily inebriated, but Guy had already asked the Designer his name four times during the lunch time session.
Last night we made the hour-long hike back to the hotel and then went out for a quiet Vietnamese meal. It was an unmitigated disaster.
The designer's meal didn't turn up and my experience with special fried rice and vegetable curry is unfit for print. This morning I've had a couple of hours out of the heat to try to settle my stomach.
England are hanging in on the cricket front, but it isn't looking as rosey as it did yesterday.
There was a Gasheads convention at the cricket yesterday. I wore my Rovers top and some bloke who now lives in Perth turned up in his, too, having spotted me from the stands. After having a chat we spotted a third person wearing the famous blue and white quarters and by the late afternoon there were six of us discussing the merits of my favourite club. No wonder they don't get anyone turning up at the Memorial Ground these days - we're all out here. In fact Gerry, who lives in Sydney, has been writing for the Gas website for 15 years from over here. Nice work if you can get it.