Thursday, November 29, 2012

Well, I boldly went ...

... where the hand of man has never set foot - or, at least, where the hand of this man has never set foot.

But before that, let's talk about the events of today. After spending the night at another one of my regular haunts, at the back of the roundabout across the road from Poplar Motors near Lymm, I headed off to St Helens to place my annual clothes order. One of the big advantages of wearing corporate clothing is that I never have issues about what to wear - it's already programmed and planned out. My little order, which comes to about £150, is all that I spend on clothing each year, and I wouldn't have spent half of that had I not left my spare clothes in Canada last May, with the intention of picking them up this Autumn.

As you can see though, my clothing issues are a simple way of living, but then again I'm a simple person.

From there, it was back down the road to the M62 and Burtonwood, and the local IKEA. No trip to the North-West of England is complete without a trip to the IKEA, as there are all kinds of delights, especially in the casualty department, and this year came up trumps.

A fitted 60cm cupboard unit, the type with three rows of holes down each side for shelf supports, 2 metres high with a hardboard back and three shelves, ex-display, cost me all of £10. This will fit nicely in the cupboard that I will be building in the living room to house the tins of food and so on. I hate white though, as you know, but behind closed doors it isn't all that important, is it?

But I was astonished by how expensive storage boxes have become. A couple of years ago I was buying any number that you like at £1:25 a head. Nothing like that now, though. Even 2 reasonably-sized cardboard boxes will set you back a whopping, unbelievable £5:25. I'll be raiding the backs of supermarkets on this trip, I reckon.

  You probably noticed in the photo above that "all items (in the casualty department) reduced by 30% or more". And you probably noticed on the left-hand side of the pic the light-oak-stained worktop and sink unit.

Some friends and I are running a competition on Facebook to find the world's most pointless discount, and this definitely has to be it. Who would want to save a quid on an article like this? And what happened to the "reduced by 30% or more"? Methinks that IKEA Burtonwood speak with forked tongue. It's the kind of thing that can land them in trouble with Trading Standards, right enough.

They have finally also started to sell LED lights, but no 12-volt ones as yet. Still, it's encouraging at the moment.

No such issues at B&Q down the road. Packs of 3x12-volt LED lights with MR16 fittings for £9:95. That's exciting news. I bought a couple of packets to see what they look like around the house. I also bought quite a few other things of use, including a green 2-metre tall pop-up Christmas tree, complete with lights and decorations, for £25. I must be off my head.

So tonight where I boldly went etc. etc. Last time I saw Chester play was in 1972/73 I think, back in the old death-trap Sealand Road stadium. 40 years on, a new stadium, two bankruptcies, a plummet down to the basement of the Evo-Stick League and a huge pile of controversy later, they are slowly crawling back up the pyramid and have made it so far to the Conference North, level 6 of the pyramid.

Tonight, in the only game in the area, Chester were entertaining Corby, 12 places lower down the table, at the new Deva Stadium, where I have never been. The matchy finished 2-1 to Chester, but I'm not sure how as Chester were totally dire. How a team as bad as that can be leading the table is a total mystery to me.

As for the catering, the coffee from the pie hut was appalling. A mug of hot water passed over the top of the coffee jar. Never mind standing areas at these football matches, the Taylor report should have looked at catering at football grounds. If the coffee anywhere else is anything like I had tonight, it will kill more people than a standing zone ever will.

Anyway, enough of that. Kate now has the keys for her new house and she can take delivery of her furniture and so on tomorrow afternoon. Caliburn will then be emptied, after a fashion, unless Terry wants me to pick up this four-poster lift.

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