This is the toss side of the Ashes that you forget about in the two year downtime: ball not doing a lot, Australian batsmen not doing a lot wrong.
You can enliven proceedings greatly by playing the ‘how bored can I possibly make myself’ game. Put the TV on mute and try not to take in any information whatsoever. If you find yourself pondering a minor element, fight it. Maybe try and sit in a really uncomfortable position to take your mind off things.
Don’t think you’ll do better than us though. We’re brilliant at being bored, if we do say so ourself. Last week, when our flight was cancelled and we were sitting around at the airport, we thought of two quite brilliant games. Game one was ‘what does it say on the bag of peanuts?’ which is fairly self-explanatory. Game two was ‘guess what the bottles of booze in that shop are by looking at the backs of them and then maybe an hour later go and check whether you’re right or not’.
We injected an extra level of brilliance into proceedings by pacing ourselves – ie, we just sat there and spent our time looking forward to playing these games for a good hour before we actually got cracking.