I find that it is possible for a human to say 'sorry' without sounding in the least bit apologetic. I refer, of course, to the ongoing saga of my home "improvements" and a telephone conversation between an un-named representative of the building firm. I will not belittle you, my dear reader, with further details of that unsatisfactory discussion.
Suffice it to say that I am still here. Well, of course, I am still here. I mean that I am here in the here of my partner's parents' house, as opposed to the here in my own home - when I AM both here - and here. I think I've explained myself clearly - though I'm certain of fewer and fewer things these days... Anyway.
The fruit of today's toil seems to have been several half-installed kitchen units and an hand-scrawled note from someone calling himself "Lee", apologising for the fact that he forgot to put half of the kitchen fittings on his lorry when leaving his depot this morning.
As if these tiresome struggles were not enough, they have also indirectly caused me much in the way of humiliation. It commenced on the first night of my stay here. At home, my partner and I each have one side of a large double bed. Our refuge in my partner's parents' guest room is only a single bed - and a small one at that.
Imagine my distress, dear reader, at 4.45am one morning when I stretched out my supple limbs, yawned, and rolled over - only to find myself plummeting floor-wards, hitting the carpet sideways-on with a dull thump. My partner was instantly awake and offering comfort tinged with sympathy. To recoup a little of my vanished pride, I pretended that I had been going to get out of the bed anyway, to go to the toilet. Dozily, my partner clambered out of the bed and we headed for the stairs.
At home - our proper home - we have a curved staircase. When descending it is eight stairs down, turn to the right, then four steps down. In our temporary refuge, the staircase was a straight thirteen stairs down - top to bottom.
Still mostly asleep, I led the way downstairs with my door-unlocking/opening-capable partner in-tow. I am sure you can guess what happened.
Yes. Eight stairs down, turn to th-DONK! "Urrrrhhhh...." Jasper walks clean into the wall in his sleep-addled state. My partner had the tact and good grace not to laugh, giving my bruised skull-cap a tender and soothing kiss.
A small SINGLE bed. How the mighty are fallen. How came the mighty Jasper Horatio Stafford to this? To such indignity? Witness the following photographic image. It may distress the more sensitive among my readers - but the truth must be told, disgusting though it is. How? I ask you. How is a man such as I supposed to EXIST in such conditions? :-
I know. So sick, it's almost obscene. I am sorry that you had to see this.
More to follow....