Showing posts from August, 2023

The Pits

    Yesterday was the pits. At least that was what the email I received implied.   "I shall be arriving at 10 am to start digging trial pits," wrote the contamination expert. I'm not sure quite what I was expecting; some kind of lunar landscape interspersed with deep craters perhaps. Oh well if we haven't been able to get away and fly to the moon or indeed anywhere, creating the effect in your back garden might just have the same impact and without all the hassle of airport check-ins. In the end, however, the work was far less intrusive. Fear the worst and hope for the best they say.  Directly attributable to a month or more of detection work by Mister E and me, as well as too much time spent on hands and knees sniffing in strange corners, I'm pleased to say that we were able to direct the expert and his shovel to within a couple of feet of striking oil. It wasn't quite a spout bursting from the core of the earth but, drilling down and scraping away, he found

Let Them Deliver

  You have to admire our present Government, always striving to tend to our needs and only ever with our best interests at heart. What is it about the Conservative Party though that since Norman Tebbit 42 years ago it's been obsessed with getting us onto bicycles, whilst ministers swan around in chauffeur driven limos or in the case of the Prime Minister jets and helicopters? Perturbed by the number of "economically inactive" people under pension age, the  Work and Pensions Secretary, Mel Stride, last week suggested that over 50's should consider getting on their bikes and delivering pizzas. (At least he knew better than to suggest we catch a train). I guess it didn't dawn on him that many of us in this category would actually have qualified for state pensions a number of years ago if his party hadn't changed the rules at the last minute and that not earning in your early sixties is by no mean unusual. He also overlooked how many are now caring for elderly rel

Appy Goddess

 I don't know how anybody else copes with domestic chores but I find them a real grind . When I was working I generally paid somebody to assist with the cleaning and ironing but even then tidying up in readiness for their visit was a burden in itself. In retirement I chose to relieve myself of that load by endeavouring to keep on top of the inevitable crumbs, dust and muck personally. I can't say I'm successful in doing so. Although after 9 years of retirement I am at least more accomplished in that sphere than when I set out. Adapting from a career that called out for an element of perfectionism to a dust and do mentality has not been easy. If anything is going to force us to downsize it will inevitably be the hours of my time spent on mundane household tasks, only to have to repeat them again a week or two later. What is it about dirt that it reappears as soon as you turn your head? Last week, however, I decided to try a new technique and downloaded a couple of cleaning a