I was on my way to collect the grandchildren from their school this afternoon and knew that I would have a longish wait at the railway station so I went equipped with the huge book I am almost at the end of. The plan was to finish it off and then leave it at my daughter’s house if I didn’t feel like carrying it home again. In the event I didn’t open a page because I met an old friend at the station, someone I haven’t seen for almost 20 years. The waiting time went in a flash as we caught up with each other’s news. Serendipity works!
Walking towards the children’s school I went past a beautician’s. Outside the door was this sign, offering manicures. I just had to take a picture and wondered who she worked for informally if she was so determined to declare the formal side of things. It’s just a shame that she spent money having a sign like that made without anyone checking the spelling.
Maybe she, and the sign-maker, missed out on bits of their education because they were taken away on holiday in term time. I read today about a couple who were fined £630 for taking their children to Greece for a week outside of the official school holiday period without getting the permission of the school. Apparently they applied for permission and were refused and so decided to go anyway, factoring in the cost of the fine into their holiday budget. They protested that the government is imposing ridiculous restrictions on head teachers, suggesting that without this head teachers would happily allow children to be absent at any time of the year. The father claimed that the people who imposed these restrictions “don’t live in the real world”.
Presumably if you can add an extra £600+ to the cost of the family holiday the “real world” doesn’t demand that your children acquire qualifications to get them decent jobs. Maybe in his real world he knows people who can help his offspring get on in life anyway. Maybe he just enjoys living for the present.
I have also been reading about gout. When I go out jogging in the morning I often come across an old chap called Jack out walking his dog, Rosie. He recently told me that his New Year’s Resolution is to give up alcohol. This has been somewhat forced upon him. He went to the doctor’s with a pain in his foot and was diagnosed with gout, much to his surprise because, like me, he associated it with red-nosed old chaps who drank too much port wine. However, from what I have been reading gout is on the increase and the causes are multiple and quite often have little to do with too much red wine, although that can contribute. It seems that some of the things that we are advised to eat because they are good for us, such as oily fish, can also cause gout, which is really a form of arthritis.
And the other thing is fructose, the fancy name for fruit sugar. Fructose is getting bad press at the moment; it’s being blamed for the obesity epidemic. Because so many people take their fruit in the form of “smoothies”, blending the fruit into a drink, they are trying to absorb too much fructose at one go and the body can’t process it. Consequently it makes us fat.
So that’s fruit that’s bad for us, ditto oily fish, ditto the odd glass of red wine.
The experts on gout say the best way to fend it off is to keep your weight down and drink lots of water.
It sounds like a rather miserable sort of life. I guess I’ll just keep on running!