My mission impossible

I'd been feeling in a really good mood when I sat down to write this column. Then the phone rang. Which meant I had to race down the stairs in my stockinged feet in order to safely negotiate our dog who was asleep on the middle step and our cat who always likes to get to wherever I'm going before me.

I'd been feeling in a really good mood when I sat down to write this column.

Then the phone rang.

Which meant I had to race down the stairs in my stockinged feet in order to safely negotiate our dog who was asleep on the middle step and our cat who always likes to get to wherever I'm going before me.

Now I don't mind if it's someone I know calling for a natter but when it's a person telling me I should replace my double glazing with different double glazing because his firm's got some sort of special deal on then I start to get more than a little bit shirty.

Which is why by the time I came to tap at my keyboard again I was so worked up - well my tea and slippers had gone cold too - that I decided I wouldn't write what I was originally going to write about - I wasn't totally sure what it was anymore, anyway.

No, instead I started remembering all the other times these type of people have got on my wick and not just in my home either. Even trips into town have turned into major offensives as I've fought to avoid them.

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Such as the other day when I nipped in purely to buy a birthday card, quite a simple mission or so I thought. But I'd only taken one step from Lloyds Avenue onto the Cornhill when a man with a clipboard came hurtling towards me.

Well I immediately turned tail and pretended to be glued to one of the Three Angels information screens under the arch - they're really quite interesting by the way - until he went back to join the rest of his posse.

It was clear emergency evasive action was called for, especially as the aroma wafting from the nearby hot potato stand was threatening to overcome me. I knew if I didn't make a move soon I'd be forced to buy one so staring straight ahead I dashed towards the back of one of the pillars in front of Debenhams.

I only stayed there for a few minutes though - I wasn't sure how much longer I could feign interest in the Clinique display in the window. It wouldn't have been so bad if the RAC man and his stand had been around but hey, when are they ever there when you need them?

In the end I had to make do with darting from pillar to pillar until I arrived opposite Samuels and then sprinted across the road - yes really - and into the side entrance of the card shop.

But being in there wasn't any sort of respite. The in-store 'muzak' was doing a wonderful job of throbbing in time with my head whilst constantly niggling away at the back of my mind was the certain knowledge that with no husband or daughter to act as a decoy there was little chance of my escaping them. Imagine my delight then when I peered out of the main door clutching my purchase, and the coast appeared to be clear.

Not wishing to risk my luck by going across their usual hunting ground in front of the market I strode round the back of the stalls with the aim of getting to Lloyds Avenue from the direction of Princes Street. And I'd almost made it too when a lady in a headscarf suddenly sprung out near Lloyds TSB aiming her pen at me.

A simple mission? More like mission impossible.

We didn't go out for a meal or anything this Valentine's Day. Well it's our dance class on a Tuesday evening and when you're guaranteed a good couple of hours locked in each others arms what more could you possibly want? Of course we've celebrated this date with lots of romantic dinners in the past though one of which has stayed firmly fixed in our memories.

It was a special Valentine's event held at a posh local restaurant. So posh in fact that the menu was actually posted to us in advance from an Ipswich restaurant. Not surprisingly we perused it eagerly to see exactly what sort of delicacies we could look forward to.

As we studied the neatly-typed heart-entwined print however, we both recoiled in horror when we saw that roasted aubergine served on a bed of stiffed couscous was listed as the vegetarian option.

Now fortunately being meat eaters we didn't have to plump for this highly unusual and exotic fare. It's never stopped us wondering though. Can you enlighten me?

As the oldest current Media Studies student by far, I thought I ought to try and make more of an effort this semester to blend in.

Not that I want to look 'cool' or anything - fat chance of that - but I did think that maybe I could aim to be just a bit lukewarm.

So as clothes from the 70s seem to be in fashion once again I thought I'd delve around in my wardrobe to see if I could dig out some of my gear from back then. Like some bell-bottomed trousers maybe or one of those winceyette nightie style dresses - ideal for the season - although definitely nothing too psychedelic. Unfortunately I only managed to unearth two items but I didn't really think it was appropriate to turn up in my wedding dress - it was miles too tight anyway. Luckily my Dr Who scarf still fits so I've been wearing that every day.

Apart from that though I'm afraid it's just going to have to be my usual array of trousers and tops. But don't worry, I won't have my midriff on display - well it is February!

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