Greenwich Mean Time

I’m beginning to think all time is mean time.  Whatever happened to me-time?  Life’s a tricky business, isn’t it?

‘Ooh, it’s been a rollercoaster’, that’s what they say on telly.   Sounds about right; we’re strapped in – usually against our will – then hurtled manically about, unable to get off no matter how much we scream.  If we get to the end without crying or wetting our pants in public, it’s deemed a great success.  And let’s face it, if you’ve had children, you don’t escape those indignities anyway.  Crumbs.  What a ride, eh?

So here I am; my last blog post was about new year resolutions and now the Christmas lights are lit in town.  On that note, permit me a teeny rant: what has happened to ‘proper’ Christmas?  You know what I mean: chestnuts roasting, the Salvation Army banging out some carols and Santa arriving by sleigh?

‘THANK YOU IPSWICH’, yelled the singer onstage in Ipswich last night, punching the air as a few mums watched on with their wailing children, waiting for the Crimbo tree switch-on.  The square, in the meantime, was ablaze with colour as toddlers waved their fluorescent plastic purchases.  To be fair, nothing screams festive more to me than a strobing neon sword.

Grumpy old woman?  Moi?  Nah.  But I do think I might have a new career planning proper Christmas markets.  I’ll add that to next year’s to-do list, along with all the things I didn’t do on the last list.  Anyway, there are still 39 days, 11 hours and 24 minutes left of this decade.  Plenty of time.  No one wants to peak too soon, right?

Cold in Kebabylon

‘Seven quid? Bloody ‘ell. What do I get for that then?’

‘Well, my fine fellow…’ I don’t say. I’m thinking it though. I think a lot of things, whilst wearing my special Dealing With The Public smile.

‘You get free-range chicken. Blythburgh pork. Pitta bread which I baked myself last night. Tzatziki made with mint I grew in the garden. For two Great British pounds less, however, you could go over there and have a cheap old sausage in a dry roll from the cash and carry.’

He glances over at sausage lady who is wearing a ‘comedy’ outfit (the only thing she could find in her van to combat the cold, apparently) and having a fag.

‘Er, maybe I’ll live a little,’ he says, counting out his change.

I despair. Not least because sausage lady probably makes way more money than us. Good food costs money. If you want high quality produce, it costs more. Simple, innit. Perhaps I’m doing it wrong; nipping to Bookers for a box of buns would be far easier than all the kneading, rolling out of dough and hoovering up of flour.

I try not to mind. People can’t help it. We’re off to Essex for an event soon. While the Greek God tries to blend in and goes all ‘geezer’, I find my inner Joanna Lumley spontaneously erupts.

‘We do try not to use the ‘K’ word,’ I’ll chirp cheerily through gritted teeth as I stand out in sub-zero winds, wearing ALL my clothes at once and lamenting the thread veins that no one mentioned in the Street Food for Dummies manual.

‘So it’s just a kebab then, yeah? For seven quid? Rip-orf…’

It was a dreadful rip-off. I might have that inscribed on my headstone when I’ve died of hypothermia, hurty knees and baker’s lung. It’s cold in Kebabylon.