Dolly came in to join the fun

Monday March 6, 2006

The phone rang today just as we were gearing up to clear breakfast things and get ourselves off to Boston. I had an immediate premonition that house move things were afoot so I ran away and hid myself, letting Graham take the call. I’m in no mood for delicate negotiations.

It was our buyer, and it transpired that her buyer was doing silly things again, dragging his heels, and that she was at the end of her patience. Chain trouble, in other words. It’s a chain with only three links but has been much delayed by the guy at the start, who is living in short term rented accommodation and has too much time on his hands to leave things alone.

“She’s going to tell her solicitor to tell his solicitor to tell him to shift or get off the pot,” Graham said.

“About time, too. How do you feel about it?”

“Make or break time.”

“She’ll keep us informed?”

“Oh, yes. She and I get on very well and she’s experienced enough to know that, as piggy in the middle, it’s up to her to do the shouting.”

“Good. Nothing we can do about it so we’ll just sit back and wait to see how it turns out. Wouldn’t want her job today, though. She’s going to be busy.”

“Right. Boston?”

And off we sailed into a lovely sunny day, me singing the Wallace and Gromit song, and Graham smiling an understanding and completely tolerant smile.

I must say I’m glad we don’t have her buyer as our buyer. Some people are really bad news when it comes to selling and buying houses. However, his actions feed through to us and we’re getting tired of waiting for exchange. The time when Graham will have to depart for Somerset whether or not the sale is a done deal is getting closer. Not perilously close, but the slack is disappearing day by day and that’s not a comfortable feeling.

We have contingency plans. Graham’s job is too important to allow a house sale to interfere with his progression. Should it go that way he’ll do the heavy duty packing of the garage, workshop, and the loft in the house , and I’ll just have to manage the move as best I can. We’ll survive.

We put all that out of our minds, though, enjoying the sun which has the beginnings of real power in it and made our trip a joyous thing. I sat in the car in Boston town centre while Graham took the second of his mobile phone parcels over to the post office, and had to open the door wide to avoid being cooked.

We’d already decided it wasn’t a day for town centre coffee, and certainly not for over-hot toasted sandwiches, so we went off to Tesco’s as soon as he’d done his post office job. It was gloriously sunny in the supermarket car park, too, and for the first time this year there was no chill blast of wind whisking up the dust by the corner where they segregate disabled parking.

Sitting over coffee and croissants before doing the shop I giggled discreetly at the sight of an elderly woman who was watching with horrified fascination as I dunked my croissant into my coffee.

“Well, it is disgusting,” Graham said.

“Tell that to a Parisian sitting in a bistro, taking his breakfast,” I said.

“You’re not a Parisian, this isn’t a bistro and it’s certainly not France. It’s disgusting.”

“No it’s not. It’s delicious. Besides, you’ve never tried it so you can’t possibly know.”

“My mother would never forgive me.”

“I’m deeply sorry for your trouble,” I said, popping the last morsel of coffee-soaked croissant into my mouth and licking my fingers with great satisfaction.

“You’ll pay for that later.”

“Promises, promises.”

The shop itself was soon done, much to my satisfaction, and we’ll not need to stock up again until Friday.

On the way home Graham dozed happily in the sun and I scanned the hedgerows and verges for the first daffodils as I drove along. None yet. Snowdrops and crocusses a’plenty, but no daffodils.

“You’re safe from the annual daffodil recitation today,” I said.

“Just as well. Not sure I could take the daffodils as well as the Wallace and Gromit song.”

“Oh,” I said, slightly deflated. “Am I still singing the Wallace and Gromit song?”


“Sorry,” I said. “I’ll do my best to think of something else.”

Back home the phone rang while we were unpacking, and Graham had another long conversation with our buyer, who was reporting progress. She rang again at about seven in the evening, saying that her buyer was now suitably contrite and had told his solicitor that, so far as he is concerned, there is no reason why we should not proceed immediately.

“I wonder how immediate that ‘immediately’ will turn out to be,” I said.

“Not very. I think we’re still in the normalement phase.”

“We’ll see. I’ll leave my money on Wednesday.”

“That’s one bet I’d be happy to lose.”

Later on, he leapt into the study and gave me a good poke. “If you don’t [poke] stop singing that [poke] bloody song [poke] I’m going to [poke] lock you in the workshop.”

“I’m sorry.”

“You will be. And [poke] that’s for the joke about my mother.”

Dolly came in to join the fun.



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