I am moved by Lady Percy 's expression of love. CLICK HERE - see if you agree.
Otherwise my novels, short stories, verse, family, music, memories, vulgar interests, detestations,
responses, apologies. I hold posts to 300 words* having found less is better than more.
I re-comment on comments and re-re-re-comment on re-re-comments.
* One exception: short stories.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Fast spin

 Most utility rooms are - ahem! - utilitarian. In ours (and from ours) the liberal arts briefly flourished last Monday. All it took was a coin.

A ducat, groat, mite, or a gilder? Whatever. Left in a trouser pocket it wrecked our comparatively new washing machine. Terry, the itinerant repairman, sighed that the nearest replacement was in Tewkesbury. Reminding me of Gloster (later Richard III), casually summarising Anne, whom he'd recently widowed and whom he intended to marry;

Edward, her lord, whom I, some three months since,
Stabb'd in my angry mood at Tewkesbury.

Switched on, the new washer tinkled an electronicky tune, conceivably a leitmotif. Terry initiated a test cycle and asked who had painted the two oils of Hadrian's Wall hanging in the kitchen.VR took responsibility but Terry's interest was comradely not critical; he too painted and may - I can't be sure - have carved wood. A cultural nexus was evolving.

VR took Terry on a ground-floor tour of other artworks: her water-colour of an Italian town at dawn, the commissioned simulated bronze statue of our grandchildren, another commissioned portrait - this time of Zach, our other grandson. Terry, nominally an electrician, bestrode the twin cultures with easy familiarity.

Then a bell (metaphorical, of course) sounded in my head. Washing machines! I showed Terry my copy of Gorgon Times, explained that the joint-hero, Hatch, had been production manager with a washing machine manufacturer before redundancy. That engineering was, to some extent, a further co-hero of the novel. That Terry was GT's ideal reader.

He nodded, photographed the book's front cover with his smartphone, said he'd order it.

So far the washing machine still works.


  1. That is a good example of part of my enjoyment in walking, that is more in the cross country walks rather than hill walking. I relish getting unlikely people to talk and have learnt never to underestimate anybody at first sight.2296 52943439

  2. Now that's value for the Pfennig! I've had amazing conversations with men who repair appliances and fix household problems. I imagine it has something to do with the fact that they are explorers at heart. They notice things, ask questions, take an interest.

  3. I'm sure you made his morning too.

    The rather prissy young man who delivered and installed our new washing machine whinged about having a cobweb on his head after the act, I thought my extensive spring cleaning had got rid of most of them but evidently missed one.

    I have observed a change in prevalent washing machine technology here: it used to be that top loaders were the norm, and I have gone so far native as to prefer one, it seems more logical if you have a rotating electrically powered container of hot water and other matter to have the opening at the top, so placing less demand on the seals. However, now the preference seems to be for front loaders, of which there was much more choice. I don't think either design is ideally suited to money laundering!

  4. The perfect setup for Chapter Two.

  5. All: Oh Gawd! Did I patronise Terry? I'd have eaten an aubergine not to. Further than that I cannot go. I watched and admired the way he eviscerated the old machine, detached the weight, rotated the drum (a hideous scratching sound) then looked at me gravely and shook his head. The dump beckoned.

    I talked with him about the only time I ever did work which Vic and Edna, my in-laws, would have recognised as work (ie, repairing VHF kit in the RAF) and T told me about switching from photography to running his own light engineering business - man's talk I tell 'ee. He liked V's Wall pix and especially the statue. He didn't seem patronised but the bill was about 50% more than I expected. So perhaps he thought I was coming the toff.

    RW (zS): Perhaps he did take an interest, along with lots of ackers from my CC. Not that I resent that. I'm middle-class, I exist to be taken advantage of.

    Lucy: According to T washing machine technology has leaped ahead during the last five years. They now incorporate logic and can be hacked into remotely; rather more significantly some Azerbaijanian can now switch off your deep freeze and ruin the contents.

    On a happier note washing machine belt drives have been dispensed with and the motor rotates the drum directly - much, much quieter. The evolution back to front-loaders in France is probably a byproduct generated by the move towards wheelie bins; local authorities feared little old ladies were going to fall in and be turned into landfill.

  6. Stella: I knew it. You hardly needed any pushing at all. I suspect you've already started on the GCN and it won't be about Inuits.