Best laid plans, etc…..

It’s been a few days – I haven’t been to the computer.  Whatever people say about smartphones, I used to spend a lot of time at the computer and now it’s spent using the phone instead.  That’s more convenient really, except for blogging, where I prefer to see the whole page of whatever I’m writing.

I did write on the phone though, in a spare few minutes on Thursday, and this is what I wrote.

The day was planned neatly enough. I had to go to my upstairs London flat to confirm I was happy to release the outgoing tenants’ deposit. I didn’t expect a problem but the formalities have to be gone through. I’d been in no great hurry so booked the 10.47 train to arrive at 12.20. Rose said she’d give me a lift, because I am not going back to Norfolk tonight. I’m meeting Tim, then we’re going to catch up with friends for supper, return to Reading and go back tomorrow. 

I was also able, fortunately, to arrange to meet a guy sent by my insurance company to find out how to solve the ongoing situation that’s caused so much anxiety. Sometime between 2 and 2.30, which was fortunate, as things turned out.  Expecting to have an hour or more free, I thought I’d have a nice light lunch at the restaurant next door. 

The guard sounded quite cheerful when he apologised that the train had slowed down. We were running a bit early, the train ahead was a bit late and we were catching up. So we’d have an unscheduled stop at Shenfield, but please don’t get out as it would delay us. A few minutes later, we were told there was a signal problem and a delay. I texted Scott, the chap I was meeting, as I didn’t have a good feeling about this. And I was right, it was a big enough breakdown that all trains on the line were cancelled. 

So I took a taxi to Upminster, a train to Limehouse and a train to Bank, then the Tube to Angel. And I arrived at the flat at 2 o’clock instead of 12.45. 

There we are, all done and I have had helpful advice from Scott, who found a possible cause of the problem (we’ve been there before a few times) and the good news that there isn’t damp in the walls and no sign of rot. 

As I write, though I’ll add to this and post it later, I’m sitting in the dining room at the National Gallery drinking my way through a pot of tea and there’s no internet connection . Tim is on his way and we’ll have an hour to potter round before meeting A & L. 

The transport for London route finder is extremely useful. I’d have been stuck without it – I’d have got advice at the station otherwise, of course, but it would have delayed me even more. This has all been a bit knackering, though. And, of course, I wouldn’t have managed without my smartphone, either. 

Yeah.  It was all simple, if inconvenient, so far, and meeting Tim and then our friends was still straightforward, but later complications led to us staying in London overnight, at a very expensive yet indifferent hotel, and therefore an extra night in Reading.  As a result, I’m all behind like the proverbial cow’s tail.

And I still have to claim my train fare back, which is an added bit of tediousness that I can do without.  That is, I don’t *have* to but I can, so I probably will.

Good things, because good things are cheering –

Pretty well everyone is lovely and helpful and I appreciate that very much

Rose cooked us a delicious sauce to go with pasta for our return, which lasted for a second night when we added a few prawns

Tim spent much of yesterday reinforcing the chicken shed because bloody rats give no respite, and he’s adorable

All barn cats now let me stroke them, even the very timid boy, and RasPutin is in fine fettle for the winter



3 comments on “Best laid plans, etc…..

  1. savannah

    Is your London flat a long term rental or have you used it as a short term vacation rental? glad you got your problem solved. I’ve been without my iPhone for weeks now and I haven’t missed it! But, then again, the MITM is home, I use Facetime on my MAC, and we still have a landline. xoxo

  2. Z Post author

    Glenda, I’ve always had it as a little pipe dream, but it isn’t at all practical. It’s a tiny flat, i’d have to get rid of everything I own except a sofa and a coffee table, a chest of drawers and a bed – no room for anything else.

    Savannah, I still have to get repairs done, starting with finding a builder. I’m so daunted, I haven’t done a thing about it yet. I seem to be permanently at the limit of what I can cope with and must keep stepping down until I’ve built up a bit more fortitude. It’s let on a short-term lease, 1-2 years. Not for vacations, that’d be probably lucrative but a nightmare! And it’s providing housing, which a holiday let wouldn’t. It must be lovely to have the MITM home nowadays, after all those years of travel. I don’t use the iPhone much for making calls, but for the internet, all the time.


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