The day started savagely with the sight of two seagulls picking over the body of a dead rat lying on the pavement. Not what I expected to see on my tootle into work on the bike.
My enthusiasm for Euro 2016 is growing, although I don’t feel any great allegiance to one national side. Being half English and half Welsh, the match between those two sides should have settled matters. But although I was pleased when Wales took the lead, I was ambiguously pleased when England came away with a 2-1 win after their relentless attacking play.
I took my reluctant Englishness down to the Titanic docks to watch the Ukraine vs Northern Ireland match with my son and his work colleague. Plastic beakers were hurled into the air above the crowd to express heightened emotions. The light rain didn’t bother the crowd in Belfast, but a brief hail storm in Lyon forced the referee to suspend the match for a few minutes. When the final whistle blew and Northern Ireland had won 2-0, we sang Sweet Caroline lustily and drifted home with an exultant crowd.