ONE WOMAN ~ TWO JOURNEY’S

Yesterday I went to a funeral.  The lovely 94 year old lady was undoubtedly on her way to heaven and believe me, all the other residents would have been calling, ‘Come on up, let’s taste your featherlight cakes, let’s hear your glorious voice, let’s watch your fingers whizz across a piano keyboard, let’s see you work your magic with a duster’.

If ever there was a woman going to a better place, she most definitely has!

And the funeral was the reason for the journeys I’m about to describe.

The main route to my destination had been gridlocked for the previous two mornings and so I decided to let the train take the strain, and rocked up at the local village station about 10.30

There had sadly been a suicide the day before at the station, but I was still intrigued to see two mature, kindly ladies with ‘Samaritan’ written on their warm fleeces, and an invitation saying ‘talk to me’.  So I did. But only because I’m just plain nosey.

SAMARITANS-KX100+_CS6_high-res

I haven’t contemplated suicide, well not  since Robbie left Take That….

In hushed tones, they asked me if travelled from the station every day, which I don’t, and asked if I’d heard about the ‘incident’ the previous day, which I had.  Apparently the Samaritans often attend the scene of a suicide in case anyone wants to talk about it.

Whilst I think they do sterling work, and I’m full of admiration, my cynical side still wanted to crack a feeble joke and say,

‘It’s such a pity you weren’t here yesterday’…..

So I boarded the train, and found myself in a carriage with 6 people opposite me, and 2 either side of me.  All of the other travellers had their heads down looking at their mobile phones. Not one of them was reading a book or a news-paper or even chatting to anyone.

I, on the other hand, gazed out of the window for the whole journey, and how nice it was to see those 2 lovely tall white horses being ridden round a field next to the track, and to spot the house of an old friend, I wondered what they were up to now, it’s been 40 years since I’ve seen them.    mobile phone railway.

I saw beautifully manicured gardens, some small children playing on a swing in their garden, a fisherman bending over a steaming kettle.

Just little snippets of other people’s lives that the phone browsers missed completely.

It was utterly silent, nobody spoke, or engaged with each other, and presumably this is how these commuters spend their travelling time every day.

Isn’t that sad, and such a waste of opportunity.

Fast forward to the return journey and things couldn’t have been more different.

There were 6 people in the homeward bound carriage, one was resolutely looking down at his phone with earplugs in, and another one of them was wired up to an iPod but was at least looking out of the window, as were the other passengers.

All of a sudden iPod man began to laugh out loud. Real hearty laughter, and at first everyone else exchanged nervous glances in a ‘is he raving mad’ kind of way.

He didn’t care, he carried on laughing, and the nervous glances changed to amused glances, and then the lady next to me began to do that stifled laughter thing, when you try to keep your mouth closed, your body still but your chest is moving ever so slightly.

I felt her movement and she looked at me and openly laughed, so I laughed with her.  The couple opposite looked at us laughing, and laughed themselves, now 4 people are laughing at another man laughing but we have no bloody idea what he is laughing at.

People began talking about laughter, how infectious it is, and continued to join in with iPod man each time he laughed out loud. Eventually, he was crying with laughter and it was all beyond a joke.    man laughing

Mr Mobile Phone man was, meanwhile completely oblivious of all the merriment as he hadn’t once looked up, or heard the kerfuffle.

Eventually laughing man took out his earplugs and wiped away his tears, and in reply to me asking, ‘you must tell us what you were listening to, he replied…

‘I’m sorry I haven’t a clue’ and we all just erupted into even more laughter.

I know this story reeks of ‘you had to be there’, but it’s not really about what I personally saw or heard, it’s about what everyone else missed, whilst being otherwise engaged.

What annoys you most about the intrusiveness of mobile technology ?

WHERE THERE’S A WELLIE, THERE’S A WAY!

Yes you can take the wellies out of the bag, but I personally cannot take the bags out of the wellies, as on the one hand (or foot) they leak like hell and really should go to the wellington graveyard.  DSC_0242

But on the other hand (or foot) they are simply the most comfortable things I ever put on my feet.

If it was socially acceptable, I would wear my wellies at work with my black meet n greet dress, and I certainly would have worn them to our Christmas party to save myself the agony of 5 hours with my bunions wedged between two jewel encrusted straps.

Not to mention the fact that to even get that far, I’d had to purchase 3 separate pairs of jewel encrusted ‘strappy’ sandals to try to find ONE pair that could accommodate my bastard bunions.

But one out of three ain’t bad, and I worship at the shrine of  eBay.

My beloved animal print wellies have seen action and lots of it. They have moved house 3 times, and travelled with me to Spain and back twice and oh my days I’ve surely had my money’s worth out of them.

£6.00 at Primarni, and worth every single penny. However, the cost per wear has now worn out and I’m seriously pushing my luck, but what’s a girl to do.  They are like old friends.

Shit covered, leaky old friends, I grant you, but old friends nevertheless.

But I won’t lie to you,, it’s not a good look having two carrier bag handles flapping about your legs, when all those around you on your daily dog walk, including my daughter, are rocking the Hunters and the Joules of the wellie world. I look like the poor relation.

Oh yes I forgot. I AM the poor relation!

Granted, I do try to keep up with the more affluent, by selecting my carrier bags with care. Some days I go upmarket Waitrose,  but mainly you guessed it, I’m woman at Aldi.

DSC_0245But there is hope on the horizon.  I have a new admirer, who has noted that on my daily dog walks, my footwear is sadly lacking and has suggested that as he has ‘connections’ he will treat me to a new pair.

Now this ‘admirer’ and I are really only ever going to be ‘just good friends’ and the lady (me) did protest muchly about the acceptance of a gift of new boots.

BUT, as we are not talking diamonds or pearls, and needs must, I graciously informed him that I am a size 5, to which he replied, ….

‘and do you take a normal size width’………so let’s see what he has to offer……BOOTS, I mean BOOTS………

THE KINDNESS OF STRANGERS

Honesty quote H60Just lately we can’t seem to avoid seeing, and reading news from around the world of the depths to which humanity can sink, so it warms the little cockles of my heart to be able to personally bring you a tiny snippet which goes to prove that there are also some kind thoughtful folk out there too.

A few days ago, at the wedding venue where I work, I picked up a phone message from an elderly sounding gentleman. He left no details, just gave his phone number and requested a call back.

Cynical old me thought to myself that he’d got the wrong number, daft old bugger, I sighed and perhaps a bit impatiently waited for him to pick up the phone as I returned his call.

After some time, he answered in the old fashioned way, with his number, something that I think you will agree we hardly ever do these days, when a simple ‘Hello’ usually suffices.

I told him who I was, and then instantly added ‘suspicious’ to my cynical side, when he proceeded to ask me if a certain named person worked at my office.

And hell yes, I went all sniffy, and curtly replied, ‘who wants to know, and why’?

Elderly man, asking about sweet 16 year old girl.  I immediately went on the defensive.  Suspiciously cynical silly me………

It turned out, that Mr F. had found our young girl Sophie’s wage packet in a local supermarket car park. He’d opened it up, found the name of her employer, and the reason for the call was that he was anxious to return her lost wages.

Honestly, I could have punched myself in the face for my initial lack of graciousness, and looking back on the conversation, predictably then went into over egging the pudding with my gratitude at Mr. F’s kindness in contacting us.

Like any other 16 year old, Sophie’s wages are hard earned and at that age, we all know every penny counts, so there was a huge sigh of relief all ways round to know that a kindly, elderly man, who possibly might also welcome a few more pennies, had been honest enough to return what had been lost.

Wouldn’t it be a good idea if there was a ‘GOOD NEWS’ paper which only gave us positive human interest stories of people doing kind things.

I for one, am getting increasingly fed up with seeing pictures of ‘victims’ clearly instructed to pose with their gloomiest face, to reinforce some equally gloomy tale of mindless acts committed against them, which, let’s face it, might give similar idea’s to people who are easily swayed.

Instead let’s see more positive examples in the media of the kindness of strangers, because as I found out it is still out there, alive and kicking.

Imagine the feel good factor going on here.  Sophie is a happy bunny as she has been reunited with her cash, and Mr. F, quite rightly, probably has a tiny little glowy feeling inside, knowing that on this occasion, his honesty was the best policy!

NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS ~ NONE!

If you have already had your Hello Sixty moment, then trust me, on New Year’s Day it is OK to say NO to New Year Resolutions!

Really, why put yourself through it, planning to deprive yourself of this that and possibly the other. For what reason exactly?

If you are thinking of resolutely changing your ways, by only eating chocolate on a Tuesday, or vowing not to be so opinionated or gobby in 2015, who exactly you are doing it all for.

Don’t do it to please others, or because you’ve read one too many Sunday Supplements.

I’m all for self-improvement, but let’s make it something that benefits us and makes us look and feel better. Chocolate in moderation is good for you, and who wants to be boring.

Why not simply commit to doing more things to enhance your life and wellbeing instead of doing less things that experts would have us believe are bad for us. Makes much better sense to me!

So I’m going to carry on with the chocolate and being a gobby cow, but I will also resolutely make the effort to paint my nails every week, and write far more missives for my blog in 2015.

Bugger that joining the gym or cutting out the Cava, far too extreme in my view. Life’s too short!

At 60, surely we are who we are ever going to be. People love us as we are, and if they don’t then tough shit, do we really care. I don’t, and nor should you.

THINGS THAT MEN DON’T NEED TO HEAR

How many of us mature ladies winced along with Ant and Dec as lightweight Kendra Wilkinson offered up far too information on live television during I’m A Celebrity Get me Out of Here.

After a dismal performance, she blamed her lack of stars on the fact that ‘she was on her period’.

Ant, poor chap turned away in embarrassment, whilst cheeky chappie Dec, bravely glossed over the statement and battled on regardless.

Of course ‘boys’ these days, are taught about these mysterious ‘girl’ things at around 11 years old, and as my own Grandson reliably informed me, even during THE lesson many of them were hiding behind their hands, sniggering in the back of the classroom, and have probably being going ‘yuk’ ever since.      H60 men quote.

Personally, I’d far rather ‘Miss’ had banged on to the boys a bit more about treating girls with kindness and respect, which will stand them in more good stead than knowing how a tampon expands in a glass of water!

So even though mature men know all about the inner workings of the female body, I think most of them just want to leave it there, no further informative updates required, thanks very much.

And I agree with them.  I think girls today share far too many intimate details about their bodies with their partners, and indeed in Kendra’s case, millions of strangers.

I mean seriously, of all the inappropriate things to say, in the jungle in front of Ant and Dec on live television, ‘I’m on my period’, must get TV’s embarrassing moment of the year award!

It was almost loud and proud; yet in reality, ‘I really look forward to my period’, said NO woman EVER!

Let’s be honest, it’s a messy and sometimes painful old business, and unless you are some tree hugging, Mother Earth, nut job, who loves to embrace her inner woman, it just interferes with our lives and we hate it.

Men generally want their woman to be a vision of loveliness at all times.  Yes of course they ‘know’ that periods happen, but don’t really want it spelled out to them that it is actually happening, like today, right here,  right now!  H60 Bart Simpson Scream.

I’d love to see girls going back to being a little more mysterious and discreet, ‘I’m not feeling to good today’ can be far more effective than a full on period alert, and who is really interested anyway.

Use it as a lame excuse to another girl and risk a ‘so what’ withering look, tell a bloke, and risk a look resembling the silent scream.

Yes, when it comes to men and the monthlies, NOT sharing, IS more caring!

 

How do you feel when you hear too much information, should girls share, or keep some things secret.

KNICKERS TO YOU!

Well you lot can laugh all you like, but if you are anything like me, you can
often judge your relationship status by size of your knickers.

If you are in the throes of a brand new sizzling relationship, then you are probably at, or in, as it were, the matching skimpies stage.

If quickies are jumping out at you from all corners of your new romantic  life, then getting ‘caught short’ so to speak, in a pair of belly warmers doesn’t bear thinking about.

You are on high alert,  appropriately underdressed, and ready for action at all times.

You’ll have stocked up on, lacy knickers, French knickers, and silky knickers. Cotton gussets no longer feature on your underwear horizon.  Saggy knickers are consigned to the bin, or if you are of a, make do and mend disposition,  rehomed in a bucket under the sink and renamed ‘Duster’.

You must be incredibly old if you feel it is acceptable to use a pair of old drawers as a duster,  unless of course you are over 85.  What’s more, if  someone has put some happy back into your lady bits in the autumn of your life,  then I’d say, fuck dusting your chandeliers,….. swing from them instead.     Ladies knickers

I DIGRESS…..

Then time moves on doesn’t it. Not only do you move into a comfort zone with your new beau, you move into a comfy knickers zone too.  Gradually, there becomes two parts to your undies drawer.

Every day pants, on the left, lace edged, a cheeky bow here and there, comfortable, yet still with a nod to the inner sexy you, but your special occasion, sexy thongs and strings are tucked away on the right, waiting for that waft of ‘come hither’ aftershave, that means, ……..well, you know what it means.

But how long I wonder before you are regularly browsing the ‘high leg, cotton gusset, full pant’ section again, instead of rocking an uncomfortable world wide wedgie!

Yes, I know we’ve all still got our holiday mini’s, and ‘hold your muffin top in’ maxi’s,  but go on, admit it ladies, sometimes you just can’t beat your favourite pair of BIG PANTS!

Knickers Bridget

..

BLACK LEGGINGS ~ LOVE THEM OR LOATHE THEM?

Whoever invented them should be punched hard, on one side of their face, and smothered with kisses on the other. Has one item of clothing ever been so loved and hated in equal measures?

Loved, I would guess, mainly by women, hated, I can confidently say, mainly by men.  does my bum look big in this. H60

Every autumn, when bare leg days are behind us, I vow that when the chill does finally come to the air, and it’s time for chunky jumpers and warm jackets, I will NOT, most definitely NOT succumb to wearing that ‘capsule’ item of clothing found lurking in almost every woman’s wardrobe, BLACK LEGGINGS.  But every year, I always do, and I hate myself for it.

But aren’t they oh so easy to wear, so comfy, so cosy and best of all, so flipping cheap!  Perhaps therein lies the irony of it all.

Many girls pop on leggings these days, almost the same way they pop on their knickers, they wear them EVERY time they go out.  It’s only their tops and shoes, which change, depending on the destination.

Leggings have become the young Mum’s uniform of choice. Teamed with baggy T shirts and woolly socks for indoors. Baggy T shirts, a waterfall cardi and flip flops for a trip to the local shops. Baggy T shirt, jacket and Ugg boots for the school run, and if they are really pushing the boat out, hardly any T shirt at all, and SPARKLY leggings, with sky high shoes for clubbing.  Dress ‘em up, dress ‘em down. Anything goes.

Having said that, it’s quite a challenge dressing leggings ‘down’ any further than they already ultimately go.

But what about us more ‘mature’ ladies.   Have you said, Hello Sixty, bring it on, but I won’t be a slave to fashion. I can’t wear leggings at my age, they are far too unkind to my figure, it’s  not what it was.  Jeggings are the way forward for me!

Regardless of age, should we look on leggings, as our comfortable friends, or are they the work of the ‘does my arse, tummy, hips, thighs, and legs, look big in this’ fat fairy in a bad mood.

Do you wear them to Waitrose, or are they something you prefer just to wear in the privacy of your own home.

Men hate leggings, and that’s a fact.  I recall in the late 80’s when leggings first became popular, a ‘gentleman friend’ of mine once commented that the sight of me, in leggings, reminded him of Max Wall.

Max Wall H60I’m still wounded. He is not my friend anymore. Max Wall indeed.

But what is it about leggings that turn men off so much. I mean they are black, and they cover your legs, pretty much like stockings, but I guess that’s where the similarity ends.

Leggings clearly do not have the same appeal to men, as a silky 10 denier black lacy edged stocking.  But both are black, both cover the length of your legs, but I think they occupy the same space in a man’s head as tights, without the gusset.

SUCH a great word GUSSET. It’s worthy of a mention for no other reason.   Black stockings. H 60

Strange isn’t it that many things that men find sexy, are so bloody uncomfortable. Suspenders. Corsets. Stilettoes……you know it’s true.

 

How typical, that something as comfy as leggings, should be
such a turn off.

So tell us where you stand on the legging front.

Will you be wearing them loud and proud this winter, or could nothing persuade you to go there!

 

Photo’s courtesy of Flickr and Amazon.

SOD OFF INSOMNIA !

From the moment we are born, sleep comes high on the agenda of our life. As babies we are rocked and soothed into a sublime state of peacefulness with chubby tummies full of milky goodness.

As parents, we negotiate with tired, grumpy toddlers, recalcitrant children and moody teenagers, to get them into bed for a ‘good night’s sleep’, which we know will not only restore their good mood, it will, by association, restore our sanity into the bargain.

How ironic therefore, that once our offspring have flown the nest, and we could enjoy our own good night’s sleep, undisturbed by colicky babies, children with nightmares, and noisy teenagers, the insomnia fairy comes calling and like an unwelcome guest at a party, simply will not leave!

If you have trouble sleeping, no doubt you’ve had the same sage advice as me, to follow something called sleep hygiene. A nice warm bath, a milky drink, turn off your technology and get into the routine of winding down before you get into bed.  Follow the rules and you’ll sleep like a baby. Sleeping angel.

Except you probably won’t.

Are you like me, is this what happens next?   Your thoughts suddenly go into overdrive, then you get a quaintly called, ear worm that plays you a random song.  Yes, I’ve endured many a Godly hymn on a loop at a fairly ungodly hour!

Then it’s tossing and turning, plumping up the pillows, going to the loo, throwing covers off, doing some deep breathing, counting sheep or stars, and more than likely going to the loo again, just to be on the safe side.

Nothing works, how frustrating it all is.

The experts tell us to distract our minds. Get up, and go into another room. I wonder what you are supposed to do in ‘the other room’.

Remember the ‘ no technology, no screens’ mantra, which rules out watching Emmerdale on catch up, and attempting The Times crossword is probably best avoided too.

I head for the kitchen. Tea and toast is my preferred middle of the night distraction. I laugh in the face of the minuscular shot of caffeine from Yorkshires finest brew, the way I’m feeling it can’t make me feel any worse!  Toast.

The dog raises his head as the waft of my toast and peanut butter finds his nose, but he’s enjoying a lovely rabbity dream, and carries on snoozing.  Let sleeping dogs lie, and all that.

They say the longest hours are just before dawn, but for me, and some of you, I know the longest hours are ALL the hours you are not sleeping!

Around this point, I often wonder what is the most civilised time to emerge from the bedroom to start the day, and what will I do once I get up.  It’s too early to start hovering, and I’ve already had my breakfast, hours ago when the moon was still shining.

But on saying a cheery ‘Good Morning’ to your nearest and dearest, and commenting on your disturbed night, isn’t it so annoying when some bright spark says to you. ‘You just think you didn’t sleep, you probably weren’t awake for very long at all’

You mutter in a fairly forceful tone, ‘actually, I was awake all night’, but they never believe you.

Does the insomnia fairy rent a room in your house too?

TINDER ~ MADE ME SEE RED!

Tinder Well for anyone who has missed it, TINDER is a phone app for, let’s call it, making a connection with someone based mainly on their looks and location!  Already a pretty shallow way of finding your one and only,  but hey, let’s not judge an phone app by it’s cover.  And after all as the strap line  on the Tinder website is ‘It’s how people meet’, it must be true!

The premise  is, that you sign up on your mobile phone, and Tinder uses images accessed from your Facebook page for your profile on the app.  This requires careful planning as many people  look like a dog………..

Once you have signed up, a selection of pictures appears on your screen with the option to swipe the picture away, either left or right, according to if you ‘like’ the picture of the person, or if you think they look like a mad person; and that’s being kind.

If you ‘like’ someone, and they ‘like’ you back, it’s called a match, and a text box opens for you to begin to communicate. It couldn’t be easier really. Of course a degree of cynicism has to be exercised. Why for example do a high percentage of the men on Tinder feel that the bathroom is a suitable backdrop for that all important profile picture, oh and there’s a wedding ring, and the same lovely lady in many a mans pictures.

But JUST  for the purpose of research, (of course), I dipped my twinkly toe into the red hot coals of Tinder and here is what happened!

Let’s call him ‘Jim’ clearly took a shine to my picture, and ‘Jim’ was the best out of a disappointingly bad bunch. But as I had clicked ‘like’ and he had clicked ‘like’, we were deemed to be a match and so the conversation begun.

Early one morning  ‘Jim’ said ‘Hi’, and a bit later on  I returned the favour. We got some pleasantries out of the way, our location ( I’m lazy, I already knew that 20 miles was way too far to go just for a coffee) and our relationship status, boxes ticked, and we both appeared to be (not) so young, free and single.  RESULT!

Then things took surprising turn, and not in a good way.   ‘Jim’ asked me what I did for a job.  Wedding Co-ordinator I told him, and that I was just off to work.  He replied saying that he would love to see some more pictures of me and was sitting in his basement at his computer,  imagining me going to my office in a short skirt and high heels.   WHAT!!??   My immediate thought was one that I often use in such circumstances….. Oh For F**K Sake!

Ever the realist, I burst his bubble straight away, telling him that happily it was an informal day at the office and I’d be in my comfy jeans and trainers.   He came straight back even more insistently asking for more photo’s, and implying that WHEN I sent them, he was sure  they would be very sexy and he couldn’t wait to see them.   REALLY?!

A few more messages filtered in during the  day, and I recall that it was not a particularly good day at the office, so later that evening, under the influence of a few tads of annoyance and a few glasses of Merlot, I fired back a ‘do one’ message to ‘Jim’ telling him in no uncertain terms that his messages were bordering on offensive, and he needed to rethink his Tinder strategy if he really was hoping for a LTR. (Long term Relationship in dating speak).

Fair play to ‘Jim’ he came straight back and suggested we start all over again from the beginning.   Errrrr……NO I don’t think so Jim.  DELETE!

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/nov/23/tinder-shallowest-dating-app-ever

This online article gives a much more indepth over view of Tinder and over a few days, I too received other messages that might have been written by a 5 year old but were supposedly from fully grown men.

However, if you do find yourself a bit bored on a cold winter evening, and need some light entertainment, sign up, if only for the amusement value of stalking men in bathrooms.

Have you ever had a Tinder experience, good or bad ?

 

Logo courtesy of Wikipedia.com

 

 

FEELING TOO YOUNG TO BE OLD!

waitingI was at work when the lady rang me. I had actually been waiting for this call for about 8 years.   The waiting list had been very long, but at last it seemed I was at the top of the queue.

My ‘be careful what you wish for moment’ had apparently arrived

‘You sound very young dear’ the caller ventured, ‘is it going to be for your Mother?’  ‘Oh NO’ I said, ‘it’s for me, I’m definitely 60, my voice is just well preserved’ – probably due to the vast quantities of alcohol that had passed through my throat I thought.

She proceeded to tell me the details in a cheery tone, whilst I, slightly shocked, took notes and agreed to meet her colleague Kate, the next day.

I got home and my ‘much younger man’ had poured me a glass of wine and run a hot bath for me. I noticed that he was all scrubbed up and smelling sweet. Clearly he was in a bedroom frame of mind.  He asked about my day and, as he tried to tempt me with his nibbles and dips, I told him, this and that about work and family, selectively forgetting to mention my unexpected phone call.

I had to inwardly digest it myself first. I wasn’t ready to share just yet, especially not with him being 20 years younger than me.  If he’d been 60 too, I might have cracked open the champagne!  candlelight

Heading towards the candlelit bath, (he really had pushed the boat out), I shrugged off my biker jacket, and peeled off my thick tights and short skirt. I noticed my gel nails needed some ‘maintenance’, I thought I might have the new seasons gold or silver next time.

OMG, as younger people say, WTF shall I do.? Yes OK, so my body is over 60, my birth certificate doesn’t lie. But my brain feels like there’s been a huge mistake and I should be, I WANT to be, the better side of 40, I don’t want to qualify for a bus pass, or any other type of ‘mature peoples’ concessions.

I don’t think I’m ready for what’s been offered to me, the very word has such ‘old’ and settled connotations, I’m usually of no fixed abode, with no roots. For the last 10 years, I’ve been travelling light, backwards and forwards across Europe, my life’s possessions and the dog, jammed in the back of my estate car.

But I looked around my hastily rented, teeny tiny house, where the dog and I get in each other’s way. And now with ‘the much younger man’ in situ for a few more weeks, it was getting mighty crowded.

I need more space, that’s for sure, and the dog needs more than a back yard to explore. A block of flats blocks my view of the outside world, and the sun rarely shines on my parade!   All in all, yes, I really should ‘move on’, but really, I mean REALLY, it all has implications that I don’t even want to think about.

lipstickThe next morning, I dressed as usual in my skinnys from Next, Ugg boots and a Zara Parka, and I was rocking a red lippy look. Maybe I should have dressed more conservatively; something befitting my age.

Whilst I waited for Kate, I wandered up and down the road, trying to get a feel for it.  It was a bright breezy day, and good grief, there were many large pants and aprons flapping around on long washing lines held up with wooden poles.   Net curtains twitched and a lady with a shopping trolley walked past me and said ‘Hello DEAR’.

washing on the line.I had another OMG moment and nearly ran back to my car.

A fresh faced girl greeted me, she looked about 12. We walked up the path, she unlocked the door, and as we walked round the freshly painted, light and airy rooms she pointed out this and that, and gave me a running commentary on local shops, doctors and excitedly observed that the bus stops right outside the door.

There was a sitting room big enough for two, yes two sofa’s, I could have friends round, two bedrooms, or one could be a dining room, yippee, my friends could also eat with me now , a kitchen where I could swing several cats simultaneously, and loads of cupboard space to store all the gadgets I never use.

Outside, the winter sun was shining on the big, securely fenced garden, and at the bottom, I spotted horses trotting around in a field.

It was a world away from my quaintly called ‘quarter house’, which was more like an eighth of a house, and where visitors usually had to sit on the stairs, and could also view the state of my unmade bed if they needed a loo break, en suite was really, en bedroom!

Kate gave me a while to ‘think about it’ and considerately left me alone to wander round and ponder even more.  But really it was a done deal.

We filled in the paperwork, I’d have been silly not to, but oh how I laughed, as she handed me the keys, and with her tongue very firmly in her cheek she said to me, ‘I hope you will be very happy in your BUNGALOW