Hints & Tips
So (now there’s a modern phenomena, people starting sentences with “So”) anyway, my multi-coloured, torn, tattered and tenuous love life came apart again dramatically at the weekend when the chap I’ve been setting my cap at for some time (I say cap but it’s actually a rather nice cloche from a retro shop in Camden Town) decided it was his absolute dream to go and live with a tribe of insect eating natives in the deepest jungles of South America. It’s all very well, I mean you have to live your dreams but the fact that he would prefer eating beetles and kipping on a wooden board to fine dining at La Petit Crevette and spending nights with me on my tempur mattress fills me with sadness and ennui. Boo to him I say. Boo!
I thought I loved him… but then what is Love? This is a question that has been posed by a great many many poets, songwriters, philosophers and tired and emotional partygoers over the years. Yes, all the great poets… Howard Jones, Kiesza, Jennifer Lopez, they’ve all asked this question. What is Love? Well, after the departure of my jungle loving ex, all I am left with as an answer to What is Love? is that it is my usual tennis score on the one or two occasions a week I make it down to Highfield Lawn Tennis, Cricket and Squash club. There is only one grass court and the rest are hard and clay, so the title is a bit a fibby to be honest, but it’s a nice place and Gemi and his wife who run the the bar in the clubhouse do a very nice G&T and rather super Indonesian food.
Yes, yes , I am getting to the point but listen I’ve only just stopped crying this morning so give me a break will you. I bought that man a Jaeger cashmere sweater last Christmas! He’s probably using it to mop the sweat off his head in his mud hut about now.
Where was I? Oh yes. It is disconcerting when you turn up at the courts to play doubles at at 8.30 in the morning (yes I do! See? Not quite the slugabed you thought), stretching, warmed and limbered up, crisp whites gleaming in the morning light, eager and ready to go, only to find court number 5 is smothered in saturated leaves!
Wet leaves on your service line, just when you thought you’d got the measure of that side-spin zinger serve coming at you don’t help your score very much as they skid off into the distance accompanied by triumphant guffaws from the evil opposition on the other side of the net.
This can be disastrous, especially when the fiercely competitive line calls from said evil opposition are already verging on winning the Pulitzer prize for fiction and a timely clearing of soggy leaves by the grounds people would certainly help matters.
Not just that. It’s dangerous. I could break my lovely ankles (have I told you I have very good ankles? They were the talk of Tuscany last year). It might have helped if they had located the courts some distance from the trees. So. OK. We gave in and took on the job ourselves, and a couple of big brooms were dragged from the clubhouse, leaving dubious line calls and the occasional Sharapovesque grunt from B, my partner, as the only hazards to deal with.
Time was now running out. Big brooms are all very well, but speed is often of the essence when you are trying to maintain your work life, tennis, balance and you need a quick set under your Versace belt before you rush off for a mid-morning writing meeting or to set out on your rambling yet charming journey towards creating a blog for the day. For what other reason would I be on the court at that hour in the morning? Those sport engendered endorphins can get you through a tough day writing fantasist rubbish you know.
So what to do? I enquired of the club’s premises manager Bogeyman Bobby (he wears a boiler suit and creeps up on you sometimes, like Michael Myers) and it seems the club’s ancient leaf blower has finally gone to join the great electrical dump in the sky and they are fund raising to buy something new. But what? I hear you ask. In fact, that’s exactly what he asked and, obviously, I said he should take the advice of Mr Dick Roberts, our leaf clearance guru and look at his blog from yesterday. As it happened I had a Billy Goat catalogue in my kit bag (every girl should have one) so I showed him.
Yes. It has to be a Billy Goat Lawn and Litter vacuum. Not the absolute cheapest I suppose but very good value, very good quality, and, along with some other top brands, available for very special prices at MowDirect. These machines are known for eating virtually anything. Smaller models like the Little Billy will deal with dry leaves, wet leaves, and the larger models (the kind I think we need, like the Billy Goat KV 600 Estate Series ) can even suck up and shred bottles and cans. This would be ideal for the aftermath of the tennis club’s legendary barbecues and anything else from Halloween to Bonfire night parties. I think Bobby was impressed, the last thing I saw was him actually drooling on the catalogue. Now we have to raise the money so it’s raffle time folks!
So. There you go. As it happened, on the day, after our sweeping exertions, myself and B managed to steal a set away from the evil opposition so it wasn’t a total washout. See ya. Holly.