James Marston: I have quit smoking this January, again

James Marston making a bacon and egg bap

James Marston making a bacon and egg bap - Credit: Lucy taylor

It must be the time of year but I’m boracic lint – there I’ve said it.

Not only has Christmas – and all that frippery – wiped me out of ready cash but I’ve had a succession of bills on my small flat with sea views (distant) in the Edwardian spa town of Felixstowe to cough up for – well, the gas bill; and I must be warm.

Anyway, I celebrated a little win at the bingo on Sunday night – my numbers came up you see – which didn’t go amiss and with 100 smackeroos, less the cost of a steak pie, chips and gravy, in my back pocket I almost skipped out of the place.

But by the time I’d paid back a fiver to my sister Claire, who enjoys murder mysteries and wants to marry a farmer, filled up with fuel and bought my weekly shop – a bottle of gin and a packet of cornflakes – it was all but gone.

So, dear readers, in a bid to save some spondulix – a lovely old word my grandmother used to use – I’ve bought a lottery ticket and stopped smoking – yet again – and am now on day four officially and day six unofficially if you count a little lapse.

I feel much better and less tired.

As regular readers will know I have fought and lost the battle with this insidious drug many a time.

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But my Mum, who worries about me, wants me to stop so I’m giving it another go.

In the meantime I haven’t stopped eating – another battle I am constantly fighting – and my plain-speaking-photographer-friend Lucy has been advising me on cutting out crisps.

This week we motored together to Melton to visit a wholefood and eco store called Poppy’s Pantry – a social enterprise which was most interesting to find out about.

While I was there I took the opportunity to don an apron and step into the catering van – fulfilling a somewhat strange but long held ambition to discover what they are like from the inside looking out.

I rustled up a few bacon baps – well mine had an egg as well as I felt the need for protein – under the watchful eye of a young lady called Michelle who made sure I washed my hands and didn’t burn too much.

Lucy, who is a vegetarian and doesn’t eat bacon, had a cup of builder’s tea instead, as she does.

As usual I threw myself into the experience but handed back the apron and legged it before the morning rush came, in case it turned out to be too much like hard work.