Derby County 3 - 0 Newcastle United.
Sitting amongst fans of the home team, I was the outsider within. Hoping to see Newcastle play a kind of football that would suggest pomp-approaching-glory, things didn't pan out that way. For all of Newcastle's 'clever' play, and their mazily tripping over of the ball, Derby played genius football - simple and effective. Very Clough. The scoreline did flatter Derby, but the honesty of their play, and the commitment of Robbie Savage, saw my non-partisan status become eroded.
Fumbly phoney photo-work, there. Fair to say, it was cold. The old lady beside me did not share her blanket.
It felt good to be lost in 90 minutes of utter nonsense.
On exiting the stadium - two minutes before the final whistle, I caught a note of burger van fried onions in the chill night air. It was a moment for huddling, for moving briskly, and for missing people.
On leaving Derby, I thought about canal boats and ceramics - traces of an earlier meeting, still occupying my mind.
And so it goes.