Back to the present

Did you miss me?  I’m sorry I’ve been away so long.  My elderly laptop died.  Like all bereavements it was quite traumatic and unexpected.  The shock dear!  I’m still reeling.

It was like this.  There was I, one evening, tired after a day gardening in the rain, thought I would just have a nice cup of tea and catch up with the fashions on QVC the shopping channel.  I now buy nearly all my clothing from QVC the shopping channel and have been doing so for about twenty years.  I hate clothes shops.  I hate snooty assistants.  I am not fond of being short. I do not like tiny changing rooms with violent floodlighting.  I do not consider a curtain to be adequate privacy.  I hate those mirrors  with the grey cast that magnify my varicose veins and I never have any idea whether anything I like in the shop will go with anything else I have at home at all.  Also, have twenty seven other people tried this on before me?  How many times have these trousers been farted inside?  Was the person who had a go of this bra before me keen on washing?  Why does this tee-shirt smell of perfume?  What is this ginger stain round the armhole?

I believe the purchase of clothing to have been traumatic for most of my life. I went to a girl’s school that had only one uniform supplier and standard sizes for each age range.  The uniform bit was up an open-plan fifties staircase with huge gaps between the treads, ensuring that the small uniformee would arrive at the changing area in a state of panic to be consistently told that I was too small for my age and would have to wear the kindergarten uniform until I was sixteen.  I don’t remember there being a changing room.  I do remember having to stand on a very slippery polished wooden floor in my underwear whilst numerous grown ups including my mother sighed deeply.  I do remember my mother’s horror at the bill. Well, it was a monopoly.  I do have crumbling photographs of me lost inside a giant grey jumper, sleeves trailing.  I do recall the weight of a wet tweed coat and having to walk home from the bus by swinging one foot and then the other as the massive garment weighed me down like a sack of wet coal.  And the smell! It was like going to school in the middle of a herd of sheep. To this day, when I see sheep I think of a school bus.

Clothing was different in the past.  A friend and old flame of my mother’s, who had never managed to leave home, finally married when his mother eventually popped off.  I was twelve at the time. The outfit bought for me was a roll-on girdle, a pair of nylon stockings, a brown houndstooth check pleated skirt and matching short sleeved high necked top with a wool trim like the teeth of a circular saw round the neckline and a pair of white gloves that cracked like lightening when you bent your fingers.

I took the lot off in the taxi on the way home and arrived in my knickers and vest with a one inch upstanding weal round my neck and was warned I would have to wear it again plenty to get the money’s worth.

Then there were the trousers of my cousin that I wore to go on a skiing trip with the school. My cousin is a tall bony girl with thin limbs.  I am a short fat girl with cabriole legs.  The trousers were half lined in order to enable the linings to wind themselves clockwise up your legs with every stride, gathering the inside seams where they were sewn to the wool outsides, into bunches.  You had to do three or four waddles and then stop and pull the trousers down your legs again.  Two hundred yards and your ankles had turned to icicles.

Then there were……………….oh you get the idea. Me and clothes. No.

So shopping channels which have a guaranteed money back return policy and the opportunity to try stuff on a home and look in a mirror which has been educated to your requirements with everything else you already have? Show me where to sign up.

So ‘twas in the middle of a very necessary fashion show with spindly models demonstrating  assorted clothing on a person rather than a hanger that the computer screen suddenly did rainbows, a test card, a migraine pattern and then nothing.

As I have not even had email I couldn’t tell regular correspondents what was the problem.  But here we are up and running again.  Can’t find a photograph management system I understand.  Haven’t got a document writing system yet.  The S&H, however, advised on make and model and came two days ago and set up quite a bit of it and here we are.

I hope this will work, let me know if there’s a problem.  Next weekend we’re off to the S&H’s so he can attempt to retrieve everything his idiot mother had not backed up.  The only item I had a paper copy of was some of the email addresses, so if you want me to write to you write to me and I’ll reply.

But first, clothes shopping, online where nature intended it to be.


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