I rose at 6.30, handed my car over for MOT at 6.45, decided to use my time wisely (reading blogs) and just went to answer a knock on the door. It was the car – returned with its new MOT Certificate. That is what I call service. If you ever need a car fixing in Nottingham, try Hillcrest Garage. I’ve been using them for years, and though they recently had to move, they are still a great garage.
I’m feeling a lot more alert than I was last night but have hit a new challenge -now that the car is back, should we go for a drive in the countryside or should I stay and write. I know what I should do, but Julia deserves a day out and we do have air conditioning in the car, which is more than we do in the house.
Decisions, decisions . . .
That was easy. We’re going out.First stop – McDonalds for breakfast, then I’m not sure what. If we go anywhere too nice it will be full people. If we go somewhere that isn’t crowded it’s probably not worth the trouble of visiting.
With six submissions in the pipeline I deserve a day out, but if we all took that sort of view nothing would ever get done. I have another submission in the bag and then there will be a bit of a struggle getting more done by the end of the month. I’ve been a bit lazy and haven’t kept up with the haibun writing – just done the haiku and the tanka.
I had a connection problem tonight and have now failed in my target of writing a post a day. I could have avoided failure by writing more in advance and, knowing that today might be tricky, I could have posted at breakfast time. I’m turning into a real Bohemian, in my later years.
Ah well, I’ll just have to write a few extras over the next few days and bring the average up. No point in crying over spilt milk.
Julia has decided, talking of Bohemians, that I need to go to a barber as I keep putting off the big haircut. Secretly I was thinking that if I could make it to October I’d get away with it for another year.
In retaliation, I’ve returned to referring to her as “my first wife”. These are the opening shots in the war to decide whether a man has sovereignty over his facial hair. I fear it may be resolved along the lines that men can do what they like but husbands have to toe the line.
I checked my tyres earlier this evening as the MOT is coming up. One is teetering on the edge of legality and I am going to try to get a replacement fitted in the morning. I have chosen those words carefully, to indicate a caring car owner who pays scrupulous attention to detail. If you are going to write such things you need to ensure they aren’t read back to you in court.
No parcels today, no coins, no postcards of dubious taste.
The car is in for its annual MOT test, plus a service and an examination of a coolant problem. Or a “no coolant” problem, to be precise: it’s using nearly as much water as diesel. Fortunately it seems to be ending up under the car so should be easy enough to fix.
On top of that, one of the tyres looked a bit flat on Sunday, and triggered the tyre pressure warning light. The sidelight warning light has been going on and off for months, though the sidelight is still working, and I suppose under the new rules this will cost me money too.
I can’t help thinking that my last VW did a quarter of a million miles without leaking and had no warning lights to go wrong.
To fill my carless day I am performing a study of daytime TV. I started with Quincy ME and have now moved on to Storage Hunters – UK. The have brought couple of the American regulars across because we don’t seem to have enough homegrown idiots.
I’m currently watching Combat Dealers. It’s an antiques programme, but with some unusual stock.
After that I may need a cup of tea, as TV watching can be quite onerous.
I had the tea. Then, just before lunch, the garage rang.
The water leak is likely to require a new water pump, which is not going to be cheap. The tyre has a screw through it and needs repair. The warning light, of course, needs attention. Warning lights, it seems to me, are always going wrong and needing expensive attention. It’s almost as if they have been there to cost motorists money.
Imagine a big sigh here.
Apart from the money, they will need to have the car for another day, though I’m hoping that will be next week.
At least it gives me a chance for a postcard and a pun about a big bill.
It’s 12.16 now and I feel like I’ve done enough. Blog, TV research, pun. This afternoon I may try a limerick and a nap before the quiz programmes start.
For now, lunch calls.
This is a picture of tomatoes in the Mencap garden, I feel in need of a peaceful picture.
I really ought to be writing my next Desert Island Blogs but if I do I won’t get round to writing about today.
It’s not been an outstandingly interesting day, but then again, it’s been good enough to record – starting with greengages and ending in conflict with the government.
The greengages in the garden are sparse but pleasant. The tree is in need of a good prune to open it up into the approved goblet shape and I suspect a good feed will do some good too. It’s at the top of my list because I like greengages, but we’ll have to see what actually happens. When your wife is in charge, and has a group of enthusiastic volunteers to help her, nothing is certain. So far they’ve ripped out armfuls of mint, laid waste to the toadflax and clipped random branches off most of the fruit trees because they watch Monty Don on TV.
Elusive greengages, Wilford, Notts
She couldn’t run the garden without them, but it would be nice to have some order in the place. Whenever I think of work going on in the garden I tend to think of a maelstrom of ativity directed towards tidiness rather than pollinators.
From there I went to Newark. The weather was lovely and I heard an interesting story about shoes.
In the aftermath of the Great War the storyteller’s grandfather died as a result of gas he had inhaled on the Western Front. It was a common story, with some veterans still coughing their ways through the 1960s and 70s due to gas injuries. This death, with an eighteen-month-old girl in the family(thev storyteller’s mother) , cast them all into poverty. They were able to get shoes from a charity – shoes for boys had Peter Pan on the front and the shoes for girls had Cinderella. She was so ashamed of her charity shoes that she tried to cover the Cinderella up using blacklead grate polish.
Does anyone know anything about these shoes? Ideally I need input from a Londoner in his 70s – now where would I find one of them?
I’ve tried Google but it’s mostly about pantomimes. There was a Bradford Cinderella Club but there’s no mention of pictures on shoes.
Newark from the car park, again
After that it was time to get back to Nottingham for a blood test. I walked in, registered and didn’t even have time to open my book before being buzzed through. Unfortunately they sent me through to the wrong room. Then they redirected me and I went to another wrong room, though I think that was my fault. Finally they stuck a needle in me. Then another. And another. Then they called another nurse in, and she failed. Finally, as my false grin was stating to fade, they hit the red stuff. To be fair, they had hit the veins with previous attempts (and I was leaking blood all over the place) but they just couldn’t fill a tube.
Last time I gave that much blood the Blood Transfusion Service gave me a cup of tea and a biscuit.
It’s getting time for my car’s MOT test, and it occurred to me that I hadn’t had a reminder from the DVLA. I checked on the website and they have no record. This is government cost cutting in action. Seemingly it’s quite common these days. I nipped down to the garage to check, and confirmed I do need a test. I’ve booked it in for tomorrow.
After picking Julia up from work I went shopping, only to find that the road was closed. It took a while getting round that, after which I had to use a different branch of TESCO than the one I had intended. This entailed parking next to a squashed pigeon and dodging round a number of large women with tattoos, who were shopping, slowly, with their equally large, slow daughters.
Now, I’m large myself, and I don’t move as fast as I did, but I do try to employ a degree of spatial awareness and I don’t take my kids shopping. They wouldn’t go anyway: they don’t like being seem with me.
Finally, to confirm my view of the place there were no decent books on the charity book table. At my normal branch there is a bookcase with five shelves of books. At the one I used tonight, just a table with a scattering of dog-eared rubbish.
As a final thought, the insides of my elbows hurt as if they’ve been stabbed multiple times. Oh, that’s right…