Sunday, 5 December 2010

Scottish St Nicholas And The Italian Calpol

I must stop writing - 'it was a bizarre day'. Of course it was. You will have noticed that bizarre days and me are like magnets. But, to be pedantic, it was just as bizarre as yesterday....and the day before....and no doubt tomorrow.

So today, in a bizarre sort of way was positively normal. I did not get stuck in snow once. The snow began to melt. The roads were not slippery. People seemed to be driving sensibly. Everything seemed right in the world.

It was no coincidence then that the trip I should have been doing was cancelled. I should have been taking an ice hockey team for their match in the Midlands, but it was postponed. They couldn't get on the ice because of.....yes, you've guessed

Therefore I had the day off. So the day unfolded with a trip to Durham and being cajoled to help on a fundraising stall. It was at a Fair which was heaving with visitors. It was in a good spot. Between the sausage roll and the sticky toffee pudding stalls. But the visitors were disappointed when they realised all that was being sold were cds and tickets to a concert and nothing to eat. They shuffled on past. But my 6'6" bulk made it difficult for them.

"Are you in Durham on the 18th?"

"Nay, lad I'm from Yorkshire."

"Well no, well maybe, well yes actually," said another.

"Oh good you can come to this fantastic concert......" One ticket sold. The psychology of fundraising has always intrigued me and I have found through experience that the great British public are incredibly generous, but you need to nudge the money out of them through humour or gentle persistence.

Selling tickets on the bus next week will be far easier.

The day continued in its usual vein. A meeting with a Scottish St Nicholas, becoming embroiled in a parade by mistake and receiving surprised looks from all around, muttering under their breath: "Who the hell are they" and managing to find the only Italian chemist in a major supermarket who gave me a guided tour of where to get ingredients for good Italian food, making the mundane chore of buying a bottle of Calpol far more interesting.

Bizarre? Certainly not.

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