Dydd Sul, 16th Rhagfyr
An early start, partly because Harry needed a lift to work but also due to my Bristolian chum needing the tools that were left in my van overnight. The van needed some attention too so I decided to factor in a trip to Brislington Halfords, and I had a mind to get Christmas bought whilst there.
By half 8 I was helping with DIY chores, chatting inanely, whiling away a couple of hours until the shops opened at 10. I loved it; my Sundays seldom involve chatting to anyone before 2pm so I was quite reluctant to leave. But the van and it’s bloody oil light were calling so off I trundled.
I didn’t faff about, just went straight to the counter and asked for help. Well, that’s novel, and very efficient – I shall be doing more of that in future. With my bottle of oil and home-front spirit, I marched to my van. Bonnet up, wallet and keys safely out of the way – right. All good and then,
“Oh. God, I hope she hasn’t locked herself automatically… Ahh…”
VW T4s have a knack of randomly self-locking. Wendy rarely does it but today – well, she did. There were my keys and my wallet, just lying on my seat. No problem; I’ll ring Gabe’
“Hey, so I’m in Brislington, locked out of my van…… Yes…… I know…… Anyway, could you please go to the house, find my spare key and bring it to me? …… Well, I can’t help your hangover – I have no other option Gabe. Look, I don’t care how long you take [crucial statement I wish I hadn’t made], just please make sure you find the right key.”
I spent over two hours roaming around that retail park. I chatted to my friend for a bit, awaited Gabe with growing frustration. After almost an hour I got a text,
At home throwing up bare with me haha
Oh Lord, I took myself to Dreams so I could sit down and cry! My friend rang,
I wanted to say yes. In fact, I did seriously consider saying I was home. But I can’t lie – not when I’m sober.
“He’s just getting the key…… Well, he’s actually throwing up…… I know but I probably gave him the impression that there was no rush – in fact I told him I didn’t care how long it took…… I know! Anyway, I need to know when he’s found the key…… Because if it isn’t there, it’ll be in my coat pocket – in the van……”
Honestly, I try the patience of a Saint.
This evening was spent present wrapping, I think Christmas may finally have landed here.
Dydd Llul, 17th Rhagfyr
Last week of term. It’s already shit. The van and her oil light are still a concern. I asked Chris to check her out – oil’s fine. Although I’m pretty sure it isn’t the cambelt, I do know that that needs replacing. And with Christmas in Wales, I decided to sort it now.
At lunchtime I drove over to Farmborough, behind Chris. There’s a lovely guy there who’s happy to sort it all out. Ace. Hopefully it’ll be done by tomorrow – definitely Wednesday. So, vanless, I organised a lift home with Ruth and for her to pick me up in the morning. I say home, actually I stopped off in town. I had a cheque to pay in and cash to withdraw. Harry, too, was looking for his Christmas gift. When we were done Gabe picked us up.
This evening was simple; Tesco had delivered so we had food. I even managed to get out with Django. Then a quick visit to the neighbour’s house before receiving the call that I’d been waiting for; the news wasn’t good.
As my lovely friend’s tough Friday night took a turn for the worse, I felt the fabric – the foundation – of my new life shake and shudder. The tears rolled from the phone call. They continued whilst I slept.