I know I get the blame for a lot of things around town, but can I just clear one thing up.
The other week I threatened to go in to local shops that I had not frequented.
No sooner have I said I would linger in the Lingerie shop than its windows are smeared white and there are bill posters advertising a circus. Wasn’t me.
Never did step inside and now I kind of regret it.
I have no time for indoors activities such as underwear, I have become an outdoors Thamensian.
The first hint of sunshine and I’m there in my shorts, socks, sandals and ill-fitting T-shirt. I pootle merrily around the garden noting down little jobs for Mrs The Thamensian to do, then perhaps exert myself with some strenuous mowing or a little light pruning.
Obviously this involves a trip to Robert Dyas to get new strimmer line, then another trip to the same shop for an extension cable.
It requires muscle power to shift more bikes than we actually own off the top of the mower which is right at the back of the shed.
Do bikes multiply? Our shed looks like a Beijing bike thief’s lock-up.
Mowing done -15 minutes mowing, five minutes strimming, 25 minutes making a cup of tea - I decide to have a barbecue.
I plan this out from my deckchair for a while, resting my eyes against the unseasonal glare of the early spring sun, then spring into action by moving the bikes back out of the shed and wheeling out the barbecue.
This has been in my friend Russ’s garden for most of the winter and the rust and grease from previous cookings are all that is holding it together. Heat kills bacteria right?
I pop to Robert Dyas for coals and one of those peculiar long lighter things, smiling awkwardly at the staff who have been in this shop less than I have today.
Then I ignite the gas and conduct a small survey on the flammability of spider webs, twigs and eight month old bits of burger.
Then it is time to don my comedy BBQ apron and get to work. I slave, um, slavishly, over all manner of meats, fish, and vegetables, moving tin foil parcels and sprinting back into the house at regular intervals to butter rolls, pretend that two tomatoes and an avocado constitute salad and set the table.
I am a blur of flying spatulas and tongs, and soon the table is groaning with a feast fit for kings.
I summon Mrs Thamensian who looks at the table, looks at me, and says very politely “You do know the kids have all gone out, don’t you?”
Happy Easter everyone.
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