Across the UK, this is the best day of the working year. The promise of a four-day holiday is the closest we now get to that magical last day of term feeling we used to know, back when summers were seemingly endless, the sky was blue, the beach was white, and Donald Trump wasn't launching missile attacks over slices of delicious chocolate cake.
The key thing to remember about the long Easter weekend is that you need to be honest with yourself. You won't actually finish that Verso book on the future of work, you won't actually get round to roasting a whole cauliflower a la Ottolenghi, and you won't actually sign up for abseiling classes at that place in Bermondsey you read about in Time Out.
What you will do, though, is go out. A lot. You are going to spend the next few days living on crumbly tobacco and sudsy lager, and you will go back to work on Tuesday hating yourself. You'll probably hate yourself for the entire duration of the week, come to think of it. Here is how it is going to happen. Probably.
Someone at work will suggest a lunchtime pint, reasoning that "the day's a write off anyway, mate," and being the easily peer-pressured softie you are you'll agree. That quick Grolsch becomes two pints, five cigarettes and a handful of dry roasted peanuts for sustenance.
A solid post-lunch hour is spent staring into space, not even attempting to hide your current inability to do anything. In that hour you think about literally nothing, and not in the good Buddhist way. You receive a tap on the shoulder you get from a middle manager who wants a quick word.
The "quick word" was, in fact, a 48-minute bollocking about your recent failings in the workplace. You resolve to sort yourself out after the weekend and manage to take a deep breath before you text everyone you know to see where people are meeting for a few bevvies.
It is half eleven and you've just spent £52 on a round of drinks despite only having £55 left on your Monzo card. You haven't realised it just yet but you've actually left your keys in the men's where they were rapidly flushed down the loo in an act of outrageously unadulterated banter.
Arriving home at gone two—having walked around three miles after spunking the final dregs of your night's budget on a McDonald's wrap of the day, which you dropped but still ate despite the fine layer of pavement-grot—you realise you don't have your keys. You will never know where they went, but you do know that you're probably going to have to sleep between the wheelie bins. You fashion a pillow of sorts out of a soggy box that once contained a cheap microwave from Argos and settle down for the night. One down, four to go.
Good Friday Night
The cardboard box melted somewhere around five and you've woken up with wet paper in your hair and the kind of hangover that can only really be solved by a can of Coke, a bacon sandwich, and as many aspirin as your childhood GP safely recommends. Sadly, those require both money or keys and you have neither. Oh, and your phone is dead, too. Brilliant. This must be how Jesus felt, you think, as he was dragged through the streets, his feet an aching mess of shredded tendons and torn flesh. And he hadn't lost his keys as well.
You decide to go "home" home. After a clammy train-ride, your mum greets you at the door, her face somewhere between boundless pity and unmeasurable scorn. Having been served breakfast by your disappointed-as-ever dad. Politely turning down the offer of a trip to Wickes, you charge your phone and return to your flat. Within 15 minutes of arriving you've cracked open the first cold one of the day and all you can physically think about is drinking can after can after can after can after can after can after can of lager. So you persuade your housemate to get the cans in. The pair of you decide to invite a couple of mates round for a BBQ despite the fact you are lacking any kind of food or any means to cook the food you don't have.
The BBQ was a rank failure; three people turned up, none of them were carrying pork products of any description, it rained and your mate's Bluetooth speaker packed it in. So you sacked it off, trudged to Spoons, and sat in near-silence over several jugs of sugar and E-numbers before being refused entry for the local student night.
"Good Friday," you say several times while waiting for the bus home, "more like…shit Friday." You go to bed with your Kindle, falling asleep to an episode of Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled which you have already seen three times before.
Surprisingly hungover free, you'll spend a solid few hours doing what you do best: internally complaining about people on the internet. Having done that till twelve, you'll drag yourself into a needlessly long shower, "accidentally" using the last of your housemate's conditioner. You will conveniently "forget" to open the window or turn the fan on because you have no respect for anybody.
You stream a video of Gordon Ramsay shouting about food that isn't as good as he thought it would be. The food seems to be causing Gordon—who only responds to the name "chef"—genuine agony. As you watch him regurgitate a chimichanga into his own lap you realise you've got to be on a Megabus to Glasgow in 45 minutes time!
Despite people showing you ResidentAdvisor approved proof that the bloke you had a piss next to at the Art School wasn't Jackmaster you'll insist on telling everyone in earshot about how exciting it was to have your first ever piss in Scotland next to the most famous DJ in Scotland, and how that piss was the sesh god's way of letting you know that Glasgow was about to be absolutely fucking lit.
Safely ensconced in the fuggy confines of one of the city's famous "afters" you find yourself confessing a long-held and deeply personal secret to what you think is an unusually receptive stranger. You have been talking to yourself in a mirror for twenty minutes. That explains why they kept interrupting.
As the sun begins seeping into the can-strewn living room of whoever's flat you're in, you'll find yourself quietly and unexpectedly thinking about the sacrifices the Lord made for you and everyone you've ever met.
Easter Sunday Night
The friend you came to Glasgow to visit never actually made it to the afters and you've somehow not twigged that until the point where the party is definitely over, and you'll be left to wander the streets for a few hours, shell-shocked and alone. You've outstayed your welcome quite dramatically so bolt straight out the front-door once you realise you don't know anybody in the vicinity. In the rush to escape the premises you'll not notice your phone falling out of your pocket and down a drain. You pound the tarmac with jellied legs, heart beating like an Underground Resistance record, head hammering like Nick Knowles on cheap speed.
You have now noticed that you have no phone, and accordingly no sense of the time, and no bus ticket. You wail. You wail into the uncaring grey skies, letting the rain wash down on you. You look like something out of a naf early 00s R&B video.
After a protracted argument with a Megabus operative at the coach station, you will find yourself on the 13 hour trip back to London. You have no food or drink, and your card was declined in Costcutter as you tried to pay for a tube of Wine Gums and a Dairylea Dunker. A fruitless search for coins saw you hurting your back quite badly, and now in addition to hunger, thirst, and boredom, it feels like someone's trying to grow bamboo through your pancreas.
The bloke next to you eats the following:
A egg and cress baguette.
A family bag of Doritos.
Two pickled onions.
A packet of crab sticks.
Your housemate'll let you in, looking just as bad as you do. There is a party still going on at yours. Of sorts, anyway. What you see is simply squalid. Pallid bodies clawing at the remains of crumbly tobacco, tiny white lines that have been scraped and re-scraped over and over again until they've basically burrowed through the coffee table. A Skream mix is playing on the stereo, Jamie Oliver's on the telly, and you're going to join in, aren't you.
You have joined in. You have really joined in. You have joined in past the point of no return. You couldn't have joined in any harder if you'd tried. You are going so hard that you'll probably wake up to a video of yourself doing something utterly outrageous to an inanimate object on Facebook.
Following that the guests will leave. The house will be in a state of disarray. You will realise, with something bordering on horror, that apart from having a piss next to the bloke you thought was Jackmaster but wasn't, that you've fucked it. Again. Another bank holiday weekend. Back to work tomorrow!