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The Human Touch Blog ~
David Farrant

I Don’t Usually Go Out On Christmas Day

Me 2000

I don’t usually go out on Christmas Day, despite having enough invitations.

Somehow I’ve always felt uncomfortable about visiting people, even close friends, as they inevitably have family there or friends I don’t know and that makes me feel a little out of place.  An exception was two years ago when I went across London for dinner; but that was on Boxing Day: had to be really otherwise  there was no transport.  This year was slightly different though as my friends Kev and Bev had invited me on Christmas Day and offered to collect me by car.  They’ve moved now from Basildon and are living quite near Highgate in the Finchley area  – only a 15 minute drive or so away by car.  Kev collected me around 12. 30 and the roads were mainly clear, although some of the minor pavements were still covered with unmelted snow.   I could never have got there on my own, even if there had have been buses.

Bev was inside watching prepared food and preparing  more, and had already laid a table in the comfortable dining room where I was told to ‘make my self at home’.  There was a wide screen television on in a corner but nobody seemed to be taking much notice of it.  The food smelt pleasant enough, but it was hard to identify what this was. I guessed it was a casserole of some sorts and

Bev said it would be ready after 2.  In the meantime, Kev poured me a glass of wine from a bottle on the table, but I noticed Bev and himself were drinking orange juice. We eventually sat down to eat, and the meal was exceptionally good.  Bev explained that most of the food was organic – and that even included the wine.  Then there was pudding followed by fresh fruit and in between, Kev was talking about his new job, which was the reason that had persuaded them to move.  He also told me about his stays in Torremolinos in Spain adding that he wished he was back there at the moment to escape all the London snow…We had a lot in common there for I had already told him on an earlier occasion that it was in this Spanish holiday resort that I’d stayed in 1966 and was to eventually meet and marry my first wife.  I had devoted several chapters to my stay there in my autobiography which they’d both read.  We discussed how the town had really changed no; or rather extended its boundaries for some miles along the coast.

They’d also read patsy Langley’s book The Highgate Vampire Casebook and it was this that had really caused his old address to be exposed. (An ex-friend of their’s had given the address out for postage purposes and then tried to deny that he had given this address to patsy, the book’s author)..

But they both expressed great interest in my own book which went into great detail about the Highgate case.  Kev explained that he knew most of the early history anyway, although I was surprised to learn that this went back to the early 1970’s when he was working as a life guard at Hornsey Road Baths in Holloway.  He knew somebody else involved in the case at that time and before long he produced a load of photographs (most in black and white) which showed people whom I immediately recognised.

We talked for most of the afternoon and he was not in the least offended when I twice went outside for need of a cigarette. I was intrigued by his detailed knowledge of the Highgate case (and other escapades that surrounded it) and said he had kept all the letters and emails he had kept in relation to this. I will not detail all this information here in a relatively short Blog, as I would first like to take in some of the implications. But I did explain my own part in this, and of how this had been totally distorted by some area’s of the Press – or more precisely, some people trying to manipulate some areas of the Press.

Kev ran me back about 7    although before I left I invited both of them to come over to my flat one afternoon to meet Patsy and her fiancé.  Patsy had already agreed to the idea and I said it was just a question of arranging a date.  So that will be another meeting for the near future.

And then, of course, I have to meet Della again about the Highgate saga.  But I wouldn’t imagine much will happen until after the Christmas period now. Everything has virtually shut down for this coming week.

But it was another eventful day.  Thanks again Bev and Kev.



11 responses

  1. Hi,David,hope you had a nice day?I went to my Parents.Thank you for what you said about the DVD.Thats very considerate.Just dont go running out of them,save me one!.I have just read your blog about the phantom monk?.It reminds me of a time i went for a look around Kenilworth Castle,with some friends-it was extremeley atmospheric.And i find all this talk about Freemasons and Highgate really interesting.I must admit i have always been extremely curious about the Freemasons,but would never have thought to connect them to Highgate?I read Dellas peice about the Owlman-once again very intriguing!Buried treasure,monsters,phantoms,and now-Freemasons-where will it all end?Yours,Clarmonde.

  2. sounds like a good time was had by all. I didn’t realise Kevs interest went so far back. it must have been an interesting and enlightening afternoon. I look forward to hearing about it when I come over.

  3. Thanks Claremonde,
    No chance of running out of the new DVD’s, got 200 in hand so far! But I must get your address again as this place is in chaos with misplaced paper-work. So I’ll get hat again and post you one Tuesday.
    Glad you had a good time. I’ve been a little tired, but still kept busy.
    Speak soon

  4. Hi David, I’m glad that you enjoyed the day with Bev and Kev. Yes, we will arrange a date again. In fact, I plan to come over next Friday evening, if both are free then.

  5. Happy New Year David!
    Hope you had a good one mate…and by the sounds of it u did!
    “…when he was working as a life guard at Hornsey Road Baths in Holloway.”
    So let me get this straight, kev and bev are old mates of Madchester?
    and now they’re not?
    the plot thickens!
    what’s going on?!
    Craig Byron

    its not worth my life forgetting that!
    anyway i clean forgot to tell u about bournmouth Gaz. i spoke to him a few months ago and he swears he saw bonky wearing what can only be described as a german military overcoat without the badges. he says he took a sly photo on his mobile phone spo i need to chase him up on that!
    apparenbtly gaz’s grandad told him about it ages ago and said he wanted to punch him on the nose as he was completely disgusted. Archie fought in the war and says he’d never forget what one looks like.
    it reminded me of the time when bokners was emailing me under one of his aliases and i called him on a review he put on amazon about a classical music dvd with images of ww2. he complained that the dvd version was missng images of hitler or something like that. i still have the saved file on my laptop at work so i’ll email it to you.
    was he like this when u knew him? bit of a hitler worshipper?
    Craig Byron

  7. haha cheers mate.
    the supermarket episode was when he told me madchester was bald. he was wearing a cap of some sort from what i remember and he took it off to wipe his head or something like that.
    it explains the need for silly facial hair. but yeah gaz is literally a couple of roads away.
    so when u say he was like that in the old days, can u elaborate at all?
    might have to start calling him Adolph Byron from now on!
    P.S whatever happened to Baldry’s cat?

  8. I was just waiting for you to show up around New Year. I knew it was inevitable, just wasn’t sure which day. I hope your’re taking care of my K, by the way. Spoke to her last week.
    Very well deduced Sherlock! K and B certainly knew the ‘mad one’ as you call him, but I’d better explain when I see you. Not that’s its a great secret, for while I don’t mind writing about myself here, don’t want to get in the habit of discussing other people’s friendships and past involvements in the world scene. You’d get me a bad reputation, and I’d end up like you (God forbid!).
    K did tell me you were back, or on the way back, but I didn’t take it in properly – bit too late near Christmas, and all that. Anyway, give me a ring. K is coming over soon, and if you’re very well behaved and don’t inundate me with a load of lager louts like last time, I might even invite you to come over with her! But I suppose at least she can control you. I was joking with her the other night, but she’s none too pleased at the fact you didn’t even remember her birthday. ‘There are such things as telephones’ she said!
    Being serious, good to meet up again. Give me a ring and we can arrange it.

  9. Yes I remember you mentioning somebody called Gaz or Gaza? last year, I mean in 2009. Wasn’t the ‘bonky individual’ with his wife about to go into the supermarket? Can’t remember properly. Except that it was down in Bournemouth. If its the same person, he lives quite near him. Wouldn’t mind seeing that picture though. Can you get hold of a copy of that as well?
    If you sent K a card, I think I can assure you she didn’t receive it. Unless you posted it from the Red Light district in Amsterdam, which knowing you is quite likely. How many times have I told you, you’re not supposed to mix business with pleasure. I guess that might be another job you’ve been ‘made redundant’ from! Anyway, she’s still going to ‘kill you’ so she says. Me? I’m just keeping out of it!
    To answer your last point, ‘yes’ he was like that when I knew him. Leapord can never ‘change its spots’, I suppose. Not that that person has ever really wanted to.
    Oh! By the way. ‘Happy New Year’ and all that. Suppose I’d better say that in case I’m accused of being unsociable. And best of luck with K – you’ll need it!
    Speak soon

  10. I can see you’re back with a vengenge! Tell me; aren’t there ANY countries you haven’t been banned from!?!? In Europe at least.
    Yes, the person has been bald for quite a few years. But that’s why he always wears a hat to go out in – well even indoors!
    Problem really started in the early 1990’s when he started peroxiding his hair to disguise the grey. I guess his scalp didn’t take too kindly to his ‘new blond look’! Well, it paid its toll, and soon even the grey hair gave up – at least on top! The only grey you can see now are strands from under the hat.
    Anyway, don’t side-track the issue. K. is after you, and its not all ‘lovie dovie’ this time. Seriously, I’d keep away from Swiss Cottage unless your’re stone cold sober! Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

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1946 - 2019




From the vaults ...

A flashback to one of David’s comedic, profound or quizzical blog entries. Dive into the archives to find more gems. 

Not Much To Say . . .

Expecting a couple of people, but I’ve got a spare hour so decided to do a quick Blog before they arrive. Not that there’s much