Bookmakers in Barking. Directly after the 11.42 at Swindon. Yesterday.
Handshakes and Happy New Years all round and then the question: "'Ave you got an 'ead this morning?"
" 'Aven't 'ad a drink in ten years, mate. Well, I 'ave a glass'a wine wiv me Chrissmas dinna and annuva on New Year. Juss a drop, y'know? Can't touch beer or spirits but wine never done nobody no 'arm.
" 'Aven't 'ad a bet on an 'orse or a dog for two year. Numbers. I do the numbers. Forty-nines. Irish. Spanish lottery...forty-nines...Spanish...Irish...American! I get two 'undered quid sometimes. I'm 'appy wiv that.
"Could do wiv a new kidney though. Bloody dialysis an' all that. Big win's all I need. Find one on the internet. Family can't giv me one. All fucking piss 'edds."