L leaves just as the workmen arrive this morning. Doggo didn’t notice them, he was too busy having fun with L’s dressing gown. L describes one of the lads as looking about 12. Yes some of them do look rather young, must be cheap labour but they appear to do a good job. One of the youngsters was just firing up the chainsaw as I left for work this morning.
It’s my third day out of five in the car this week, needs must, but it’s shameful really.
The media is full of ‘swim for free by 2012’ headlines. Apparently the government is to give over-60s free admission to public swimming pools next year with under-16s to follow and then everyone else by 2012.
It’s easy to be cynical, and L immediately is, but I like to try and be positive. It’s a very small step and probably far too late if the Government hopes to encourage greater participation in sport ahead of the 2012 Games but it’s something.
Of course it’s going to cost a fair bit of money but as the country’s already broke, what’s another few million on the nation's credit card; it's what everyone else would do. Anyhow they know they’ll be out of power soon, so paying for it won’t be their problem or of course they could just raise the money through mores taxes on alcohol and petrol...
The problem in Nottingham is that the pools are already close to capacity and they’re intending to close some which will make the overcrowding worse. Also, although they’ll get money to fund the free swimmers it could do some financial damage to Nottingham's Flexible Fitness scheme, if its members opt about because the swimming is now free.
There are some good comments on Radio 5 about the new scheme. Serious swimmers email to say that they would swim more if the pools weren't always full of ‘floaters’ e.g. casual swimmers. The casual swimmers email saying they would swim more if the pool wasn't full of over-serious ‘psycho’ swimmers. Oh well, you can't please everyone, or anyone it seems.
One ‘psycho’ compares coming across a ‘floater’ in his lane as akin to finding a flock of sheep in the fast lane of the motorway. I like that analogy.
A contrasting view came from a mother who said her Daughter 'thought' she was a fast swimmer and so always swam in the fast lane but her mother didn't want to disillusion her by telling her she was actually not quick at all.
I have the afternoon off and go home to placate our vicious dog who feels he is being taunted by the workmen. Released to freedom he totally snubs them, goes next door and christens their front drive with a rather large deposit. Consequently, we are not speaking, again. He's been dying to do that for years. Hopefully it's now out of his system, in more ways that one.
Just after I arrive, Son walks in and heads up stairs with a white carrier bag of goodies in one hand and a half eaten pasty in the other. Healthy lunch, not.
I take some drinks out to the workmen and Doggo again takes the opportunity to embarrass me and promptly becomes the first being to wee up the new fence.
In the evening we head over to Derby to meet some friends. L is struggling with her injured thigh and is worried she won't be able to sit down, which means we might have to prop up the bar. I've not got a problem with that but I'm not sure how she can eat her curry standing up.
After missing the first bus, we get the next one and L does manage to take a seat on it. We arrive at the Brunswick, a little late but have just enough time for a pint and a half of stout each.
We half expected it to be morbid in there but it's not. John Evans, who started the Brunswick pub and brewery more than 20 years ago has died this week from a heart attack, aged 58 while he was in China. After the Brunswick he moved on to set up the Flowerpot, the Smithfield and the Headless Brewery. We raise our glasses to him. They are of course going to name a beer in his honour, they’re calling it ‘Legend’.
We move on to the curry house and have an excellent meal before heading home with a Methi Naan for Doggo. I can tell he's disappointed it isn't Keema but eventually he forgives us.