9am - Catch bus.
9.15am - Alight from bus and start walking down our special shortcut to Old Trafford.
9.30am - Remember that our 'special shortcut' was actually a shortcut from where we used to live and not from the bus stop. We've actually added distance to our journey.
9.40am - Arrive at ground.
11am - We don't really know several of the people we're sitting with. They go and get beer. It seems early.
11.15am - The people seem keen to get more beer. We start to feel under pressure. If it weren't for the relaxing properties of the beer, we'd probably be having a panic attack about now.
11.30am - The bulbous pint-glass bottom situation comes to light, as the first drink is spilt. This will be a theme for the day.
1pm - We start a beer-glass worm. When we say 'we', we in fact mean the people we're with, together with the row of people in front of us. We provide some glasses though. We feel that we were there at The Worm's inception.
3pm - A large cheer greets the joining of The Worm with a relative.
3.30pm - The Worm is dismantled by a steward. Our dreams of a beer-glass boundary rope are quashed.
6.30pm - The match finishes and we walk over to the grocers to buy some coriander.
6.40pm - The shopkeeper refuses to let us in on "the secret" to growing coriander well. He appeases us by telling us that it just grows better in Pakistan and places.
6.45pm - As we leave the shop the shopkeeper reveals that the thick, lush coriander we have bought was grown in Manchester. We reach a tentative agreement that he will reveal "the secret" the next time we purchase coriander.
9pm - We are at home. We start to get a hangover, which is very disconcerting at this hour.
9.30pm - We fall asleep on the settee.
10pm - We fall asleep on the bed, but in our clothes.
3am - We awake to find that the Beer Badger has already visited. In addition to taking all of our money and doing something in our mouth, the Beer Badger has brought a profound sense of our own worthlessness which is quite astounding in its clarity.
4am - Curse the Beer Badger for his work as it is denying us the sleep that we so desperately need.
8.30am - Arrive at work and check the clock for what is likely to be a very, very, very, very long day.
The picture depicts an occasion when Mark Richardson of New Zealand hit the ball into the crowd and it landed in someone's beer. We thought it was an apt photo.
Labels: first-hand cricket, Old Trafford