DID SHE DIE IN VAIN?
Rather like JonnyB's tactic of, well, not lying exactly...more failing to correct misapprehensions...being economical with the...well, lying actually, I suggested to Idris that we have a day out in Lincoln. Castle, cathedral, history, second hand and antique emporia etc. with nary a mention of the whisky shop. So confident was I of her finding the proposal irresistible that I had taken the liberty of phoning the day before and reserving a bottle. Wouldn't want to go all that way and risk disappointment now, would we?
So, we saw the cathedral.
We had a gander round the castle taking in an archery demonstration and a look at one of the original copies of Magna Carta.
And yes, I was led on an expedition and to the proprietors of any shop we didn't visit that afternoon, I can only say it wasn't personal. I have the power of veto only as long as I use it sparingly. On this occasion, I limited myself to those places possessing at least one of the following.
1. Jaw dropping prices.
2. Tourist crap on display in the window.
3. The words 'Olde Worlde' in their name.
So, we trudged back up the hill fully laden up to the small square in front of the castle and with an, "I wonder what's up here", quite accidentally and fortuitously chanced upon the delightfully named Whisky Shop.
Now this is a place that, as they say, does what it says on the tin. I walked in, glanced around, manually lifted my jaw into something approaching a closed position and retracted my eyes back into their sockets.
"Can I help you, sir?"
"Er...I don't suppose you do bed and breakfast, do you?"
It was a good job they didn't. We only had two weeks left in England. I had never been in a place which more inspired one to spend money than this one. Row upon row of single malts each one represented by bottles of different ages and strengths. You will be surprised to learn that I was strong. I resisted. The thought of putting everything on the Company's expenses as 'corporate entertainment' only momentarily flitted across my synapses and I only took the bottle I had reserved...
...and one of that about which I had completely forgotten.
So, ticking them all off the list like a kid in a playground swapping footie cards, "Got, got, got, not got...no, got" I realised my mission had been accomplished. There was no feeling of anticlimax, no sense of emptiness...I had, after all, a new purpose. To get them all back home for a taste off to end all taste offs and attempt to drink them at such a rate that they will last a year until the next malt run.
A word of advice. When cleaning the guttering of a bungalow, always place one's stepladders at right angles to the exterior walls. This will help avoid the risk of attempting to descend on the wrong side, as it were, crashing through the diagonal support strut and thuswise decorating one's inner left thigh.