Friday, 22 April 2011

Long weekends

    I did have a long post half-written about how the girl is becoming a PITA again. But I scrubbed it because I didn't like its tone. Too whiny. Writing is cathartic, publishing said writing is not necessary for that effect to be achieved.
    Here in the UK we are embarking on one of our periodic rashes of bank holidays. A late Easter, a Royal Wedding and May Day mean that we have four of them in eleven days. We're surrounded by a rash of monarchism and apathy as the explosion of national joy at William and Kate's impending nuptials turns out to be rather muted compared to that surrounding his parents' wedding back in 1981. Back then we had a village party with a huge spread of food and several families clustered round a slightly blue-tinged colour telly. I seem to remember some of the women sporting highly improbable outfits featuring more than a little red, white and blue, though that could be a confusion with memories of the Silver Jubilee in 1977. This time I guess my mother will have it on in the background in digital widescreen HD but I doubt she'll watch the whole ceremony. I saw a piece yesterday making the point that the royal engagement ring alone is worth £32m, £4m more than the UK Government's total 4-year spend on services for abused women. Sigh.
    Unfortunately my wife will be at work for some of the holidays. So I'll be at a loose end. Not that I'll be short of things to do. After nearly nine years languishing, the Rusty Old Wreck is finally booked in for an MOT test on Wednesday, and I have to ensure that it's as ready as it can be. Old cars can always surprise you with the diversity of ways they can let you down , and I'm anxious that the Wreck doesn't do that to me on its Big Day. I've had enough drama so far with its brakes. Who knew that finding a drum brake adjustment tool would be so difficult in 2011!
    In a way having the Wreck roadworthy will be an anticlimax. Sure it's fun bimbling through the countryside in a fifty year old car, but I've found that the fettling of an old piece of machinery is what has kept me coming back to it of late. Something real I can involve myself in to help myself ignore everything else. You'd never have caught a twenty-something me drooling over supercars at the Motor Show but it will be interesting to see whether I rediscover some of the fun I had in owning an older car back in the '90s. I guess if I'm short of old machines to fix I've always got a geriatric motorcycle begging for my attention.
    With so many days free I'll probably attach the mutt to her bit of string and set off across the fields a bit further than my usual circuit. My part of the world is looking pretty good at the moment as you can see from the picture attached to this post. So by next Tuesday I'll no doubt have caught the sun, have sore feet and insect bites. But I hope at least I'll be happy having shed the girl as best I can.


  1. Good luck on Wednesday!


  2. These activities that require complete focus for fairly long periods of time have become really important to me too. As you say, Something real I can involve myself in to help myself ignore everything else, especially that PITA girl.
    For me it is carpentry. Nothing like handling machinery that can take a finger off very quickly to keep you focused on the moment! :)

    As to the 'royal wedding', we in Canada also had a lot more enthusiasm thirty years ago for this sort of thing, as I recall. Still, there are groups of friends who have made plans to get up early in the morning to watch together.

    Good luck with the MOT test.


  3. Here is a PITA question for you "How much does your gvmt.spend on services for abused men"?
    I would not mind strolling through your part of the world today. No heavy winter boots required, lucky you.
    Enjoy whatever you'll be doing.

  4. Jenny, remember, no matter how well you fixed those drum brakes they were only ever there for decoration and not for stopping an old car in the same hurry of todays traffic! Hope it passes it's medical with flying colours!

    Caroline xxx

  5. Is somebody getting married? It's all too boring for me. I know as much about the royal family as they know about me and they care about me as much as I do them! I won't be going out of my way to watch that event. Street parties? What a laugh! In 2011 those things are old hat. They were fine occasions in the forties and maybe the fifties but I fear most people these days couldn't give a toss. We'll take the holidays though, well for me life is one big holiday anyway. Forgive my ignorance but what is a PITA girl?
    Hope your jallopy gets through the red-tape of the dreaded MOT with flying colours of red, white and blue perhaps?

    Shirley Anne xxx

  6. Forget it. I realise what a PITA is! Tut,tut

    Shirley Anne xxx

  7. Evening all, and thanks for your comments.

    PITA? I wasn't looking forward to explaining that one politely :)

    I have to say I can't find any figures for the spend on abused men. Very incisive point. However I suspect that the number of abused women will comfortably eclipse that of abused men.

    I think I'll watch the wedding, but it turns out I'll be doing so in town. I think I'll pass on breaking out the bunting though.

    Today saw me engrossed in the Wreck once more. One last annoying thing to fix, but I think it's ready.