The cummulative effect of carrying a boat on your head and trying to direct traffic in a wet suit

I got to the bottom of Quarry Wood Road the other day to find it literally gridlocked - Longridge had some sort of canoe based event on and cars were parked along the entire length, effectively making it a one way road with two way traffic. Everywhere around me, weaving between all the stationary cars, were teenagers holding oars, small children, mothers with push chairs and men carrying boats on their heads. Solitary Beardy Man sporting a wet suit, was holding a sandwich aloft in one hand whilst ineffectively waving the other at us drivers and making a half-hearted effort to deal with the traffic chaos they had created, whilst topping up his calorie intake. It took me 15 minutes to inch up the road and by the time I got to the Marlow end, my face was resolutely stuck in Slapped Arse.
I then arrived at John Lewis to purchase present X for my partner's birthday.  Present X was not on the shelf so I approached a girl with at least an inch of make up on, who was stood like a limp lettuce at the doors, presumably trying to diffuse an air of helpfulness by osmosis. Unfortunately, when I asked for some assistance she made the mistake of hesitating and replying with the word “possibly” - thus my Slapped Arse face barked at her like a Rottweiler. Inch of Make Up beetled off to find a colleague who could help and nervously presented me with Ineffective Youth. Ineffective Youth looked at the shelf, agreed it was devoid of present X and suggested that as they were out of stock, I might like to buy online – a suggestion which got very short shrift. So that’s how I found myself vacantly staring at a toaster for several minutes, trying to process what to do next. I came back to the present when another customer, who assumed I was considering the aforementioned toaster said “Are you after one of those”? And I turned to him, and without a moments consideration, I looked at the poor man and replied only with “I am VERY grumpy”. At this, he visibly re-coiled (well who wouldn’t) and I could see his wife grab his sleeve and begin to edge him away from me. Now in my defense, I assumed that he had over-heard the fractious conversation with Ineffective Youth and I felt I needed to justify it. Anxious to put things right with my new friends, I pursued them as they backed past the coffee machines, whilst I heard my mouth rush through a nonsensical account of the last two hours of my life. The last I saw of the man, his wife was still dragging him away from me as he tried to say “I was only going to tell you they sell them cheaper in Currys”…..


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