Thursday 18th April 2024

Good morrow, sweet peeps, ‘tis I, the houseboy, limping in to say how do, and to wish a belated Happy Easter to one and all. I hope the Easter Bunny was generous with the (very early) seasonal goodies. I had my share, and more.

Weather report: wet, wet, windy, wet, windy, cloudy, wet, gales, freezing, windy, wet.
Weather summary: Shite.

March roared in like a bitch and fucked off like a twat, leaving rain soaked gardens and bedraggled wildlife. The poor birds don’t know whether to build nests or try to knock up an ark.

On the home front, Dick, despite the erratic weather, is happy, as racing season is in full swing, and he’s eyeing up the gee-gees and speculating on form and other such things that are a mystery to me. We all had a bit of a holiday in March, going down south to visit his ancestral halls. While there we had a few days at the Cheltenham Festival along with Dick’s daddy, his sister Linden and her partner Reuben. It’s taken a while, but I really like Reuben, he’s dead posh like the rest of Dick’s family, but he’s okay. What I first took to be snobby standoffishness (I’m a judgmental sod) was actually a bit of shyness. I know him a bit better now, seeing as we’ve been visiting more, and he’s actually quite funny and down to earth in a posho way.

Anyway, going to the races is much more fun than watching it on the telly. I had a great time, and even Shane had a few wagers on the horses. I did suffer a smidge of my habitual jealousy when the champagne corks popped, but I was relegated to supping fizz of a non-alcoholic variety with my smoked salmon canapés. You can fib all you like, but zero alcohol fizz, no matter how expensive, does not compare to the real stuff. It’s just grape juice by another name. Shane caught my eye and conveyed a look that clearly said, ‘don’t you dare start fucking pouting, boy, or you’ll be going home in a body bag.’  Hint taken.

What’s this limping business, Gil, I hear you say. Well, I’m currently in recovery from a freak accident involving sharp sand last weekend. The plot ZZ has allocated me on his allotment is modest in size, but I had the idea of dividing it into portions, for different veg, by laying down stepping-stones. I’m only growing for household use, so I don’t need masses of space for each crop. I had the stepping-stones delivered no probs, and was all set to lay them down, when ZZ pontificated, saying it was no good just chucking them on the soil. They needed bedding in properly. Eh? They needed a bit of a foundation, or they’d be unsafe and unstable, a bit like me (oh ha, ha, ha.)

ZZ advised laying the stones on a bed of sharp sand and gravel. I could hardly lug some home on the bus, so naturally sought transportation help. ZZ’s van was off the road after hitting a pothole big enough to function as a wetland nature reserve.  Dick refused point-blank to ferry me to Wickes to get the required goods. He wasn’t having ‘dirty building materials’ in his beautiful motor, thank you. Shane said he was too busy, and why didn’t I just get the stuff delivered. I wanted it there and then, if not sooner. Eileen stepped into the breach and off we went on Saturday afternoon. I chucked the required bags in a trolley, paid for them and pushed the goods from the store to load into the boot of Eileen’s car, and that’s when disaster struck.

I didn’t notice the slight curb between the exit of the store and the start of the car park. The front trolley wheel went over the curb, and the weight of the sand then flipped the trolley over, and me along with it. I hit the ground like a bag of hammers. Fucking hell, talk about a grand slam. The trolley crashed over, I crashed over, Eileen cried out. I felt like the whole world stopped and stared in my direction.

Poor Eileen, It gave her a hell of a fright. I laughed it off, but I was so embarrassed and shook up, I almost cried. You feel like a complete twat when you fall over in public. My hands and knees took the brunt of the tumble, especially my right knee. It’s still painfully stiff, and the bruising is still coming out. I think it must have hit the edge of the curb when the trolley dragged me over. Of course, there were grazes on the heels of my hands, which triggered action from resident TCP fiend, Shane. The merest hint of a cut or graze, and he’s there, bottle and cotton pad in hand, ready to inflict more agony along with a stench so powerful it can repel ground to air missiles.

On the upside, to stop me moaning and whinging, while limping pathetically, Shane and ZZ stepped up to the bar and laid the stones for me, under my strict supervision of course. What might have taken me several days took them a couple of hours on Sunday afternoon. Shane enjoys physical labour when he gets a chance at it. The trouble is, he’s bossy, and rejected all efforts on my part to ‘instruct.’ He knew what he was doing, and he knew best, so why didn’t I just step aside and let them get on with the task.

Dick, who came along for the ride, opted for elegantly sitting in a deck chair, making artistic suggestions, which were also ignored, while drinking milky coffee from the big flask I’d brought. He can make himself at home anywhere can Dick. Seeing as there was no other seating available, I sat on his knee, which got us a few odd looks from other allotment users, but we didn’t care, we’re used to it. It was fun actually, bloody cold, a bit windy and spitty, but at least not full on pissing down.  It was nice to be outside, having a bit of banter, and watching a project take shape, with people I love.

Thanks to all who have emailed of late, with a special shout-out to Stace. Hiya. Yeah, I reckon you’re right, Stace. I’ve done research myself over time, and it seems more than likely I was named after that character. For those who don’t know, a character called Gillibran Ironhelm featured in a fantasy role-play gamebook called The Forest of Doom, published in the eighties. He was a dwarf warrior king, and a bit of a good chap, as far as I can tell. Cheers, dad, for the weird name, though I’m just fucking grateful you didn’t call me Bigleg or Trumble. I’d never have made it through my school years alive.

Right, I’ve run out of steam, my gobshiteness is over for today. It’s all or nothing with me. I’m off to stuff lunch down my throat prior to going out for a hair cut this afternoon. I hope the weather is nicer where you are, and that all is well in your worlds. Ta-ta for now.     


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