Good clean fun?

I may live to regret asking this. We shall see …

I went to supper with some friends the other day and a very nice time I had. We had some kind of yummy coronation chicken type thing on bits of poppadum to start with, eaten outside on our hosts’ terrace, overlooking a Capability Brown landscape – or what’s left of it by the farmer who ploughs closer and closer to the oaks every year, in an effort to render them so unsafe he can chop them down unhindered. Then we went in for baked salmon, new potatoes, beans both green and broad and a yummy salad. Finally, my friend had made a lemon meringue pie for which the only word that comes near being adequate is ‘ambrosial’.

Anyroad – we were chatting about this and that, and one of the chaps there is a barrister/recorder/judge type person, and for reasons that, of course, he couldn’t explain he’s recently been subjected to positive vetting by someone from the MOD. And one of the questions his inquisitor asked him was, ‘Have you ever attended a washing-machine party?’

And, totally baffled, but anxious to cooperate, he replied that, no he hadn’t.

Well – er – me neither. As far as I know. Can anyone enlighten me?


I can’t quite believe I’m contemplating this …

Is this nuts? I’m faced with the possibility of having to buy a new car because my daughter has just graduated to playing a full-size cello, and it won’t fit into my tiny Peugeot.

Aaaaarrrrgggghhh! Anyone similarly challenged got any advice? It’s not one of the things they go into in any detail on Top Gear.


So, we’ve had some friends staying. That’s the reason I’ve been a bit quieter than usual. I haven’t been washed away or deprived of electricity and fresh water, although thanks for the kind enquiries. All is well, down here by the river.

Anyway, these friends – they have a little boy, quite a bit younger than ours. And it got me thinking. In the rest of the animal kingdom it’s the young that feed on half chewed food regurgitated by their parents. Whereas among humans, it seems to be the other way round.

Did you ever imagine, those of you with kids, that your breakfast would one day consist of spat-out fish fingers?