Rusty but not so trusty now

THE trusty rusty Rover is in trouble. At the moment it sounds like a 1960s racing car. Each time I accelerate the noise is deafening, I can't hear The Archers over the din and it has become exhausting to drive.

THE trusty rusty Rover is in trouble.

At the moment it sounds like a 1960s racing car.

Each time I accelerate the noise is deafening, I can't hear The Archers over the din and it has become exhausting to drive.

Though once cruelly as a colleague described as “a disgrace to the Evening Star car park”, the trusty rusty might be old but it has always been exactly that-trusty.

But today, dear readers, I am desperately worried that the life of the trusty rusty Rover is drawing peacefully to a close.

Even a minor cough at her age can easily spread into a splutter and before you know it she'll be knocking on the gates of the great scrapyard in the sky and I shall have to cycle everywhere.

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I suppose it will firm up my thighs but I should miss a motor-however rusty.

But death is a strange thing isn't it? And funerals even more odd.

Well, when I say odd, I mean completely and utterly fascinating.

No event excites me more to be honest-well at least from a people watching point of view.

It is always interesting to see so many people in one place feeling so awkward and there is nothing more awkward than a funeral.

The rules change.

You can't giggle-well not hysterically,

You can't be too upset-unless you are strange.

You can't banter-not unless you want to appear insensitive.

You certainly can't cry-unless you're a woman and do it quietly.

You can't get drunk-there's never quite enough booze and being sozzled on amontillado isn't pleasant.

You can't sing along to the music-even though everyone plays Robbie Williams nowadays.

You can't crack jokes-well only subdued ones.

You have no idea what to say-nor does anyone else.

And on top of all that you have to look sombre and smile sadly at the same time-easier said than done.

Earnestness-a trait so normally disapproved of is encouraged-as long as you don't go too far of course.

My funeral of course will be fun.

There will, of course, be the massive “outpouring of grief” that is now, it seems, normal and expected when someone, whoever they are, dies.

After the tributes are paid, the obituary in The Daily Telegraph “Wannabe celeb who never made it, didn't.”, the front page on the Evening Star “Forgotten reporter forgotten”, the minute's silence in the House of Commons “as a mark of relief” and the response from a “shocked and saddened” Queen Camilla-upset she lost her only fan.

People will lay flowers at the door to my little Ipswich sitting room, and someone somewhere will be trying to sell my Rover on e-bay “fat-boy banger-a little rust”.

Da. Da da, da da da da. Da da. Da da da, da da da.

For those with rhythm in your fingers and rhythm in your feet that little selection of Da da das should be recognisable as the Tango-obviously.

Now in the improvers class with my long-suffering-dance-partner-friend Jess, we have just started to learn the Argentinean Tango-at least I think its Argentinean.

So excited to be dancing the Tango am I, that as we glide around the floor on the eight step basic move I have flicked my non-existent hair a few times and pouted towards an invisible camera.

Deep down I know the long-suffering-dance-partner-friend Jess would prefer it if I got the steps right, but at the moment I am so enjoying taking on the mantle of 'improver' I've forgotten about all that.

THE Suffolk Show isn't just about odd bowler hats and massive tractors.

For those of you who like a cup of tea, a slice of cake and a chin wag there is no better place to go than the Evening Star/East Anglian Daily Times marquee -and this year, dear readers, I shall be treating the tent as my very own rather large Suffolk Show sitting room.

Happy to hear any life stories, general musings, thoughts or views, I shall be in the marquee with a large slice and a pot of Earl Grey as I report on events at the two day show.

Newspaper sales manager Lynn Turner told me what to expect.

She said: “It's a relax and revive tent. This year we will be doing the usual tea and coffee and juices but also a selection of cakes from around the world.”

Mmmm-cakes.

“It's a great place if you need to take a rest from the hustle and bustle of the show,” she assured me.

So if you fancy something exotic like an Indonesian cup cake or a French fancy bear me in mind and don't forget if you're passing I'd love to say hello. I won't be wearing a strange hat though.

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