Wiggle niggle

Sparrow is in the forefront of innovative town planning with its new scheme for the main road near the H&J. As part of the project, funded by the mayor of Blondon, Sparrow Council hired a consultancy to bring disparate local businesses together to improve their rather scruffy shopping parade. This was very successful – the consultancy succeeded in uniting local businesses in their hatred of a) the consultancy b) Sparrow Council and c) the work that has been done to “improve” the area.

They have a point. The improvement works include an amusing take on double yellow lines – a wiggly line like a snake. All well and good – if it hadn’t been painted so badly.

I find the above very distressing. It is slapdash and untidy and makes me wince every time I walk past. If you’re going to do a silly wiggly line then at least do it properly!!

 

Welcome to Ratland

Poor Sparrow – despised and ridiculed by most people who enjoy living here. Now, to add insult to injury, Sparrow has been dubbed “Ratland” because of all the rats that enjoy living here too.

Our beloved home town has been on the news for being infested with rats – worse than Hamelin – after a couple of video clips emerged showing scores of rats skipping about in broad daylight – helping themselves to a light lunch from some bin bags and also scurrying about busily under an underpass.

Regular readers of helenandjo.com will know that we have had our own battles with rats – Helen kills them on a regular basis with her trays of blue poison.

In the light of the rat surge someone has set up a group called Fixit Sparrow to tackle environmental health issues and I have joined. So far we have done nothing – not even contact the nearest pied piper, which would be the logical first step.

 

 

Allotment record!

When Helenandi go to the allotment we are often greeted by fellow allotmenteers who say things like “long time, no see”, “I haven’t seen you here for a while”, and other annoying things like “hello, part-timer”.

It is true we don’t see some of these people that often. When we go to the allotment they are frequently NOT THERE but we don’t go round pointing this out all the time. In fact, we were at the allotment on Saturday and NO ONE ELSE was there – where have all those part-timers and slackers got to, we wondered?

Anyway, the other day was some kind of record. We had been working on our allotment – as we often do – and as we were leaving the man who has hair growing out of his ears and often jumps when you say hello, possibly because he is deaf (possibly because of the hair), greeted us with: “Hello! I haven’t seen you for TWO YEARS.”

This is a) not true and b) very annoying.

Recycling

My old car (and its nettle) have been recycled, most excitingly into my first new pound coin!

I was very pleased to see one, especially since it has a 2016 date on it, which I thought might be very rare and valuable, but it’s not, it’s very common and worth £1 (subject to inflation).

However I did come across an article talking about the introduction of the £2 coin, and saying which of those were very rare and valuable.  Apparently the ‘test coins’ which had a very limited run are much sought after.  I used to have some of those – because my mum worked in a bank (I don’t think she stole them, just to clarify).  I kept them in old film canisters because they fitted perfectly.  I never quite understood why I seemed to have them several years before the £2 was properly introduced, but reading this article about the testing answers that question.

The bigger question however, is where on earth are they?  Do I still have them?  Are they lost forever?  Or did I spend them?  I fear that it’s one of the latter options but I will have a look over Easter.  I could be rich!  I seem to remember I had quite a lot of them, I rather liked them for some reason.  Fingers crossed.

Cheese and mouse crisps

A horrid thing happened last night. I was eating some crisps and put a handful in my mouth and was suddenly chewing on something distinctly furry. Aghast, I pulled the “thing” from my mouth. All I can say is that it looked quite a lot like a mouse’s tail although it probably wasn’t. I should have kept the “thing” and then I could have taken a photo for you all to see and maybe sent it off to a lab to be analysed. Also, I could have written a strongly-worded letter to the manufacturers of the crisps and demanded compensation. However, I think I was in shock because I just wanted the “thing” as far away from me as possible so I threw it away and tried to block it from my mind. Suffice to say, we didn’t eat any more of the crisps.

The Mystery of the Wellington Boots

Here are a normal pair of wellingtons of the kind you’d wear to the allotment or on a muddy walk. Or are they? I was cleaning these wellies just now when I realised they are NOT a pair of wellingtons but two different wellingtons.

Note the different treads on the soles.

Note the different lines/markings.

One of the boots says it is made in Italy but the other is of unknown origin. I have ODD boots. But how? This is yet another HelenandJo Mystery.

Let’s think like Miss Marple. There are many possible solutions:

1) I bought odd boots at the garden centre (possible but unlikely)

2) They are meant to be different because it is trendy (unlikely)

3) I have somehow mixed up one of my pairs of green wellingtons with another (I have three similar pairs although I can’t recall when any of them have met any of the others as they all live in different places – Sparrow, Northbamptonshire with Helen, and at my second home in Groxley Green)

4) I have somehow mixed up my size 9 green wellingtons with a pair of size 9 green wellingtons belonging to someone else, perhaps in Spales where there are many different wellies lying around all over the place (this is probably what has happened)

Anyway, it is all very embarassing. The reason I was cleaning them is because I will be wearing them to a smart-ish event this weekend where everyone goes around in tweed and wax jackets. Hopefully no one will notice my wellies don’t match but I will KNOW and I am already feeling anxious and unsettled because I like things to MATCH. I will have to try and forget about it but it will be very difficult and will probably ruin the whole weekend. I wish I HADN’T cleaned the mud off now as it is much more obvious they are NOT THE SAME.

Signs of spring

It must be nearly spring because my old car is once again growing a nettle out of its wheel arch.  Hooray!  I hope that no-one accidentally ‘weeds’ it out like last time.

I guess I should really recycle my car so it can be turned into a racing car or some spoons or whatever they do with old cars.