Tuesday, 16 July 2013

“Turned out nice again” - those strange days when everything insists on going right

We took off early from Cornwall on Sunday morning and got all the way to the M4 without a single roadwork or accident to hold us up. My only worries were that there’d be a summons for speeding waiting for me on my return (speed-gunned on the A30 on the way down); that I hadn’t actually left my mobile phone at home, but had lost it at a service station and someone had spent the best part of a week racking up huge charges organising terrorist attacks; that England would somehow allow the first Ashes test to slip from their grasp; that my son hadn't received the top-up cash we’d wired him to enable him to eat during his last three days on holiday in Israel (long story); and – as always – that we hadn’t been burgled in our absence.

Pleased by our rapid progress (I’d been caning it a bit), we stopped at Leigh Delamere Services, only to notice liquid dripping from the bottom of the car, forming a large dark pool by the right front tyre. Lots of passing motorists commiserated, and several applied Sherlock Holmesian deductive powers to the phenomenon – it was a coolant problem or our thermostat had developed a hot-spot (huh?). My wife phoned the AA and we glumly ate lunch in the baking parking lot. Then her phone ran out of juice, so I went and found a power-point in the baby-feeding area. After about an hour, and just when I getting ready to tell the next faux-sympathetic motorist to go and boil his head, the AA bloke turned up. “Notice anything else wrong with the car?” he asked in a rich rural accent. I hadn’t. “That’s good.”

Slipping on some surgical gloves, he dropped to his knees, got up close and personal with the now Loch Lomond-sized pool beneath our car. “Air conditioning,” he announced. “Oh dear,” I said. “Will you have to tow us home?” “No, there’s nothing wrong with your car. That’s what it’s supposed to do.” I asked for confirmation (several times in fact). “So we have to drive it home with the air-conditioning off?” “No - as I said, it’s working fine.”

Back on the motorway, almost sobbing with relief, and lavishing praise on Jurgen, our VW Golf TSi, for his ruthless efficiency, I caught the two o’clock radio news – England needed one wicket to win, but Australia only needed 20 runs. I knew it – I just knew those annoying baggy-capped buggers would manage it!

Our luck with the car, I assumed, would mean some other disaster waiting for us on our return. When we got home, I almost ran into the house and plugged in the computer. England had beaten Australia by 15 runs. My mobile phone was nestling safely in the inside pocket of my jacket in the bedroom wardrobe. An email from our son confirmed that he’d received his money. There was no speeding ticket. And we hadn’t been burgled.

And George Zimmerman had been found not guilty!

The fact that the inside of the house was hotter than the Sun simply didn’t matter.

It all reminded me of that great Sgt Bilko episode when Phil Silvers he realises it’s one of those days when nothing can go wrong and busts a gut trying (and failing) to place a bet on a race in California before midnight. I’m not a gambling man, so I contented myself with gloating over endless replays of that day's test highlights.

1 comment:

  1. Fly in the ointment19 July 2013 at 06:08

    The win for Zimmerman and common sense will sadly presage ever greater distortions by the liberal media.'Newspeak'in the left-wing press is all too common;the danger being the overturning of sensible laws.