My Week: Weddings, pasties and an affinity with Poe: John Love struggles with the canteen and a script on the side while working behind a busy hotel bar

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The Independent Online
MONDAY: A quick shower, on with the uniform (not too garish as hotel uniforms go, the waistcoat a pleasing tropical green) and then down to open the bar at 9.30. A few conferences on this week, so it's a case of the calm before the storm, ensuring that everything is in place for thirsty delegates arriving in the evening. Down to the staff canteen for lunch; what culinary and exotic masterpieces await? Beef and onion pasties. Murmurs of mutiny - I imagine that Mao and Castro undertook an apprenticeship in revolutionary thinking in hotel canteens. Prepare coffees in the afternoon, and at 5.30 I hand over to Francis, and return to my room to work on the script I'm secretly writing. I feel a growing affinity with George Orwell.

TUESDAY: Michael Portillo is visiting today, so it's all hands to the deck. In the event, he only has time for a quick cup of coffee and off to do whatever it is that successful Conservative MPs do on Tuesday afternoons. I'm off back to the staff canteen. Contemplate becoming a vegetarian.

WEDNESDAY: Crisis when Helen doesn't turn up for the early shift on the bar. Sabrina from the restaurant fills in until I arrive for my late shift; she works as she drives. Evening shift is fairly quiet, most guests seem to be staying in their rooms to watch the football. Spend most of my time polishing glasses. Finish about 1am, grab a coffee and rehearse my acceptance speech for the moment when I win an Oscar.

5THURSDAY: Down to the health club for a bit of keep-fit, make a token effort to lift some weights, sweating profusely. Feeling completely inadequate, I head for the swimming pool and struggle through 50m. Hurrah] Staff canteen time; perhaps the chef will take bribes? It's a busy evening on the bar. I make lots of cocktails for the restaurant, which is doing a roaring trade. Amanda, the assistant manager, asks if everything is OK. Stefan, the laughing German, comes to give me a hand. Fall into bed about 2.30am. I feel a growing affinity with Edgar Allan Poe.

FRIDAY: Francis returns after a few days off. Where he goes nobody knows. Another busy shift, Stefan helps out again. Amanda says hello and I go over my 'could have been a contender' speech. Finish about 2.30, as a few stalwarts are splashing out on the Remys. Feel a growing affinity with Kurt Cobain.

SATURDAY: Wedding day and today there are two receptions. One of the couples arrive by helicopter - now that's what I call style. Both receptions go off very well. I must remember to ask the DJ why he played The Streets Of Philadelphia, a great composition but surely not the song to play for newly weds?

Finish about 2am.

SUNDAY: An unpredictable day. Steve, the hotel's resident American, is first on the scene for his usual Sunday morning black coffee and pint of water, he will be leaving soon as he has been transferred to Amsterdam. I will miss him. The restaurant does a popular Sunday buffet, so I have a busy pre-lunch drinks period, many families taking out their mothers for a Sunday treat. We should all do that more often: it is a genuine pleasure to see families in harmony. Only a few afternoon teas to do and before I know it Francis appears. The pub beckons, so I take a quick bath, put on a splash of aftershave, and off I go.

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