Le Tour de France, Strasbourg prelude, July 2006
It seems my French is destined to improve.

The complaint method was again swung into action last night when I was forced to call “La Police” to express my displeasure at being woken by a bunch of Chavs partying outside my window – at 3am.

Of course the brief conversation I had with the frankly tired-sounding gendarme required the standard “I must warn you – I’m English” preamble; even so, I managed to make myself understood in a foreign language when only one side of my brain was functioning (the other side was still asleep).

Remarkably I was only asked to repeat myself once, or twice … possibly more, I can’t really remember.