Having had a few days when nobody wished my presence (the first day started about 50 years ago) I have managed to catch up on half of the things that required doing about an eon ago. So as the sun decided to shine even though this allowed the chilly air to freeze everything and some things that ought not to be freezed I wandered abroad through the gardens. The thing about the cold weather is that while the plants have few flowers the cold keeps the mums and kids well away. Only two could be seen in the play area, two too many for me, and I wandered freely among the greenery breathing almost fresh air and enjoying the sun.
A passing stranger offered me a smile, the type of smile women like her offer when fearing you are a rapist, and I only just stopped myself shouting "BOO!" I had an encounter with a neurotic teacher on Tuesday and I am rarely in a mood for other neurotic females. I blame the 'Daily Mail.' Any man walking alone is clearly a rapist/murderer/paedo/ like that man on the TV and needs to be watched as they have read about such things. The only other who approached me was this timid squirrel and I had nothing to offer him. However as another possibly older squirrel came hurtling down the oak tree and began to chase him from what was clearly his patch this was an irrelevance. I actually put aside some nuts for the beasts and of course go out without them. Tsk!
As a few birthdays are coming up I decided to shop around the charity shops. With Christmas past I was hoping folks would have dumped their old stuff in and give me a chance to get a new jacket, shoes and birthday gifts. How disappointing that was today. Nothing worth paying for except one book that they were asking far too much for. It's a charity shop not a bookshop I wanted to say to the woman.
I noticed some things however such as a dozen or so DVDs of English football. I noted these were not new and it struck me one lad has found himself a wife at last and his favourite videos and DVDs are being dumped. It may be of course that she has dumped him and his goods are following or she might have tidied up in that female fashion with no comprehension of what has value and what has not. I expect the 'Jane Austen' sets are still in their place at her house.
There are six charity shops in town, two of them attempting to be 'High Class' shops with quality shopfronts, decent adverts and higher prices than required. Most of the staff are of course volunteers but such shops while making money appear to have the wrong attitude for charity shops in my view. This is made worse when the bigger the charity the more is spent of staffing costs and it appears to me some require urgent and radical rethinking of their policies. The other shops are less pretentious and a wee bit cheaper in my view and I like that. While one works hard at making second hand stuff look almost new the other makes sure stuff is decent and puts it on show. What more is required? One or two of these shops have been going for years, since before I came here 20 years ago almost, and the 'Cancer' shop has taken over a million pound in its time. A recent refurb has made it look good and sadly they now stock less books, mores the pity. I sometimes wonder about the history of the objects on sale. Who wore that jacket? Why was that gift rejected? Did the owner of the university books make a success out of their study? I'm very taken with the 'Sue Ryder' shop as they sell furniture and have loads of everyday items usually with that one thing you have been looking for. Naturally they did not have what I was looking for today.
Ah well, next week maybe.