Tuesday August 30, 2005
When it came to it I had no pleasure in sacking the agent today. The poor young man looked all shrunken and defeated when I handed him the white envelope. I’ve seen that look before, not too many times but often enough to know that it’s not a game, that there are no winners.
Even so, I seemed to be walking a little taller when I left the shop and strolled through the bright sunshine to take my reward of croissant and capuchino. It was still quite early and not yet heated up to uncomfortable levels. Walking through the memorial garden in the shade of the tall trees was pleasant, and my coffee was good, too. I had no reason to stay in town, though, and the rising heat persuaded me to enjoy but not to dally. I motored home, turning on the little silver Ford’s airconditioning as another little treat. Hadn’t needed it on the journey there. Time I got back onto the driveway, the humidity hit me like a damp blanket when I got out of the car.
I don’t run the air conditioner all the time I’m driving. Mostly it’s not necessary but I have to confess it’s a great step forward in motoring comfort, even if it does cut into fuel economy at a noticeable rate. I think it’ll be a major benefit on the long journey down to Somerset, though, and I’m sure that Dolly will appreciate it, too.
Back home I had a very light lunch and turned in to resume my sleep cure. My legs are very much better for the rest I’ve allowed them.
Waking in the mid afternoon it was still hot and humid. Turning the TV on for the news a bright little weather lady told me it was going to be even hotter and more humid tomorrow. Oh, what a joy.
I put off grass cutting to the last possible minute, and donned shorts for the task. Got it done, without any increase in leg problems, but it was getting dark as I finished up, wound the cable and cleaned the mower down. I sat outside for a little to catch my breath in the company of the first wave of evening bats, helter-skeltering around the sky, scooping up insects to break their fast. The can of beer I’d pulled to refresh myself during my breaks was almost finished, and had got rather warm, so I slurped the last of it down and came back inside to get another. That was about it for the day. I’d done pretty well, considering, and I’ll get myself off to bed at a sensible hour so as to be up bright and early tomorrow to clean house before the heat turns up once more.
Off and on throughout the day, I tuned in to the TV news channels, like most folks with the leisure to do so, I suspect, and watched the growing coverage of the devastation in New Orleans, Biloxi and the Gulf States. Not for long, and with the sound muted for the most part. Can’t bear the gormless chattering of the news presenters at times like this. No, strike that. I can’t bear the gormless chatter of the news presenters at any time. I have no desire to add to the fathomless chat-streams on this dreadful storm and its effect on the people in its path except to send my hope and best wishes for strength in adversity, and peace in recovery.