Week Twelve: 2022

This week the weather has chosen to be full of spring delights which has kept us in the garden a fair bit. Vicky the tortoise is moving at last though she hasn’t started eating as yet. The signs are all pointing to fact that the year is coming out of hibernation.

In the UK the government has issued its Spring statement or some such. It used to be a budget when I was a child. Then someone added an autumn statement as a sort of second budget, then someone said it was silly to have two budgets and the autumn was the best time to set out the financial policies to be adopted, but then we had to have a Spring statement. Again. Keeping up?

This year the focus is on that new-old worry: inflation and its forty year high and the impact on the cost of living. I remember inflation dominating headlines and politics in the seventies and early eighties and then, gradually it seemed to disappear. Now it’s roaring back and we have a generation or more who have no idea how that will impact them. I even heard that magic word: stagflation being banded around. Before we know it we will have monetarism and money supply and M4 and all sorts. Keeping up?

The commentariat have been banging on about the Chancellor not sorting out the exponential growth in fuel and therefore food prices which the war in Ukraine will not help. I did scratch my head about one debate, however. People were asked what they would do if they didn’t have enough to eat or heat their homes, the questions being aimed at families rather than the elderly.

I hesitate because I am fortunate not to have to worry at this time about that debate, but when one respondent said they’d not fed their children so as to keep the heating up, I must own to a sotto voce ‘Wtf’? I grew up without central heating. The front room had a fire that was lit only in the depths of winter. The only warm room was the kitchen and that from the stove. We woke to ice on the inside of the windows and sometimes were allowed to share a hot water bottle to heat the bed, but mostly were told to rub our feet hard to create friction. You eat and wrap up warm. If you are older, yes that doesn’t work so well. But for younger families…? Maybe I’m delusional and ignorant of some modern verities. I can hear dad say: ‘In my day…’ I promised I’d never say that, but really…

I’ve begun listening to Stephen Fry reading the Blandings series by PG Woodhouse. That man was a genius writer. ‘Beech chuckled like a large kettle coming to the boil.’ ‘It was Ronnie’s turn to kick out surprising the same earthworm who Sue had earlier kicked and who had begun to sense it was raining footwear…’

Currently chez nous is girding itself for a change in status. The son and heir with his delightful spouse are on the cusp of buying their first house. As the Textiliste and I did back in 1985, they are purchasing, in the parlance of the day, ‘a dooey-uppy’. However back then, our respective parents lived 105 and 120 miles away. So we lived on site, ingesting dust and lead paint and decades of dead skin while the works took place around us. This place is mere three miles distant so a ‘move back in’ is planned. We’re all excited, although there is a younger cat to accommodate alongside the Dowager and there is a slight frisson that they will have rules and codes of behaviour that maybe are above the standards we tend to employ. Fortunately we have plenty of bathrooms and copious toilet paper… I anticipate the tension will be around bedtimes…

Active readers will recall my ‘secret diary of the father of a fiancéed’ series that I wrote, based on my experiences of seeing first the Vet and now the Financial Broker across the marriage line. I’ve turned that series into a short novella and am thinking about covers, as well as titles (the current title is like a mouthful of gooey toffee). Here are a few ideas. Perhaps you’d let me have your initial impressions…

Maybe I should call it the Secret Diary of the Father of an Affianced. Is that better? Grr…

And of course, there’s been Dog

And a spy…

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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42 Responses to Week Twelve: 2022

  1. 2nd title and 2nd cover of said title works best for me (and I believe Dog supports me in this decision)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. willowdot21 says:

    I like the book The Diary of Trainee In Law , first cover it’s clear concise and catches my eye!
    I often wonder why everyone has to move out while having building work done, as you say we coped with children, animals and weather! Also my children hood on the heating stakes was just the same as yours! Right down to ice on the inside of the windows, cold hand and toes, warm kitchen and fires as and when!
    Feed the children, dress them warmly and keep them moving. …. I know we bought that generation up but really we didn’t spoil ours! …OMG now I’ve said it!!!
    Good luck with the down laws you may have to bite your tongue. Our youngest moved in with his in law’s when they had their house ‘re modelled.’ with two children in tow as well.
    The garden and dog look amazing, and yes I did keep up 💜

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Third row on the left for me 🙂 Hope publication goes really well.
    Love foxy spy!
    Re. cold houses, when we were both (sister and I) pretty young we spent a very cold year in Yorkshire (including 1962/3 winter) and the best way of keeping warm was dancing. My mother used to play stacks of records from Russ Conway to Cliff to various instrumentals, including Telstar (which we loved) and similar (Chubby Checker!). We had no neighbours then, so noise didn’t matter! Interestingly just looking at the Chubby Checker video, it’s pretty shameful that all the backing dancers are white…

    And now I put on this for motivation (takes a few seconds to get going): Feeder

    Liked by 2 people

  4. ThingsHelenLoves says:

    When I watch the news now, financial things or otherwise, my think-out-louds run from ‘ah, that is awful’ to ‘ you kidding me or what?’.

    The first house my husband and I bought when we got married would be kindly described as a fixer upper. We never quite had the funds to properly fixer-it-up, so it was an ice on the inside of the windows sort of a place. Good training for military quarters, I suppose.

    I like The Diary of a Trainee In Law best.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. noelleg44 says:

    We’re certainly hearing about shortages of everything on this side of the Atlantic. Fuel being at the top – and frustrating because while Biden promised to send gas to Europe, we can’t get it here at home. Instead, we buy it from Iran…or Venezuela. That’s so smart! I love that fox – he or she is a handsome devil and looked like they were napping on the fence. Glad you don’t have chickens!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Here in the States we have the hapless groundhog to tell us when spring arrives…Vicki seems like the real deal. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Darlene says:

    I like The Diary of Trainee In Law best for a title. The first one works for me best. See what Dog thinks. Good luck with the lodgers. Might be fun.


  8. Erika says:

    Here she is! Herkules is still considering whether he shall wake up or skip the alarm again… That fox looks too cool but a bit scary too…

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Love the fox. I’m uncertain about Dog since his photo refuses to load. Any cover will do.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. THE DIARY OF A TRAINEE IN-LAW for me (first one) Otherwise, a complete change “How to get rid of the kids – A Secret Diary”.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Widdershins says:

    #4 for the win for me. Love the angled text following the tiers of the angled cake … and maybe Msr Author’s name horizontal and bigger, at the bottom?
    Love the fox video-ette. She/he’s just daring Dog to notice. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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