When I was about six or seven my parents took a holiday to Jersey and unusually let me accompany them. For once I wasn’t dispatched to Grandma’s in salubrious Forest Gate. On the last morning, Dad decided he’d buy me my first watch – a Timex.
It was like getting your first Action Man, some kind of rite of passage. When we got back to the hotel, Dad and I went for a swim. We both wore our watches. His was a waterproof Ingersoll (I’ve still got it and it works after 70 years). The Timex? Flooded inside of course. Dad had the bright idea of popping it on top of a table lamp to dry it out.
When we got back after tea the plastic cover had melted and the hands looked like something Salvador Dali might have painted. I howled my eyes out and to his credit the old man went out and bought me another one on the strict understanding neither of us told my mother – parsimony was her thing.
The next (and possibly last) time I cried was when I was 13. The boxer dog I had shared all my young life with had to be put down. Dad was on duty, mother was squeamish and doubtless as upset as me so it was my lot to cradle the dog while the vet did his thing. Big boys don’t cry? This one did when Stormy breathed her last. I was inconsolable.
I didn’t actually go for my tear duct hat-trick as Wes left the field on Saturday but there was a bit of a welling-up there I can tell you.
It was utterly wonderful when he walked onto the pitch with his children before the game: what an experience for all of them.
The day was set up for him and he didn’t disappoint. Okay, his goal took a wicked deflection and had a wriggle around the post, but it still went in.
Josh Murphy provided a finer but similar finish and we held them out. Just.
So goodbye Wes, goodbye Harrison (who was excellent again) goodbye James and probably goodbye Moritz.
Goodbye Angus also, who got the cheers of the day from the Barclay.
And goodbye to anybody else who the Board can get two bob for.
Will what we are gifted with next season be able to dispatch the likes of Leeds as the current crop on Saturday did?
Only Stuart Webber and Daniel Farke will know the answer to that.
Don’t ask me because I don’t know.
But I do know that Saturday’s line-up did it for Wes. They really did.
The ultimate compliment to a great professional.
Thanks for everything Wesley Hoolahan.