Today it dawned on me that my glorious five year plan, which I drew up on Sunday 15th November 2009 while I was waiting for the population of Africa to reach one billion (it turned out that I had to wait until Wednesday 18th November), was at last bearing fruit.
I won’t bore you with the details but many moons ago I resolved to sell up and move abode to somewhere smaller and cheaper and, to cut a long story into a medium sized one, have more time on my hands to do the things that make me happy.
So today, apart from the usual Saturday morning tasks that we all have to do like draining the pus from the carbuncle on the hamster’s arse, sorting the week’s empty whiskey bottles into alphabetical order, oiling the moving parts on the medieval torture rack in my bedroom and telling all my Facebook friends what I spread on my toast at breakfast time (which was more time consuming than you might imagine because I chose to write to them all individually on lavender scented notepaper), I had very little to do.
So I went out.
I hadn’t planned to go out as I hadn’t really expected to have so much free time so it took me an hour to decide where to go and what to do.
I drove to Salisbury which is about twenty five miles over the heath from where I now live. It’s a lovely old city with big pointy churches and old winding streets filled with pokey little interesting shops and lots of nice little gardens where you can sit on a bench all day drinking Carlsberg Special Brew and shouting at the space bats that flutter about so annoyingly behind you when you’re not looking.
Even when I got to Salisbury I didn’t have a plan, so I just wandered. It’s a very photogenic city (though you need a periscopic telephoto lens to capture images of the space bats) but it was too grey a day to take any decent pictures and they would have been cluttered up with premature Christmas shoppers pushing and shoving each other about so I didn’t even bother taking my proper camera like I normally would on a day away from the Mullan maelstrom.
I went into a café for a cup of a coffee but they’d sold out so I found myself buying myself a pot of tea for the first time in my life. The idea of a hot cup of infused leaves served up in the finest china in a twee little tea shop sounds very nice but it tasted like the urine of Beelezebub so as soon as I was finished I whizzed round the corner for a jar o’ stout to take away the taste and eliminate the risk of regurgitation. Guinness, I find, is the ideal cure for any digestive malady and, in Salisbury, it’s cheaper than a pot of tea for two too. However, I would advise that if you’re going to go dipping your ginger nuts in anything wet, tea could well be a better option than Guinness.
Feeling liberated at last from the stressful burdens that accompany the status of home owner and self-employed businessman that had rendered me in the past far too busy to even find the time to fart, I decided that I might like to spend the evening in Salisbury too. Having driven there and having had one pint already, a skin full of strong drink was completely out of the question so I enquired at the Tourist Information Office about what other entertainment might be on offer. The options available were a Freddie & the Dreamers tribute band, a stage production of Dracula performed entirely in the medium of dance or a lecture on the local custom of seeking carnal knowledge of root vegetables.
So I went home and read my book, because I now have plenty of time to read books … even thick ones with small writing and no pictures.
One of the few space bat free zones in the lovely city of Salisbury.