I had nothing better to do than to look outside my window.

It's a nice day. That is to say, it's not raining.

I wonder if English people always viewed a day when it wasn't raining as nice. There must be a reason why as a country we so eagerly embraced the umbrella. I don't suppose it was for its properties as a parasol. My favourite book ever starts, "There was no possibility of taking a walk that day..." just because it was raining. And there must be a very good reason why we like to talk about the weather.How many stilted polite conversations have opened with, "Lovely day, isn't it?" or "Raining again!" It's as if the psyche and the weather are connected.

Yesterday was all gloom and despondency, the US banks were folding (and my comiserations go to anyone caught up in that fiasco) and we waited with baited (bated? I should look it up; you know I won't, so delete as applicable) breath to see what would happen to HBOS. It took me until 10am this morning to realise that HBOS WAS Halifax Bank Of Scotland and not HawaiiBurmaOhioStuttgart or any other combination of letters. I went through my local Halifax today; there were people closing their accounts; elderly people mostly, and asking for their hundreds of savings "in ten pounds will do", as one doddering old man said. And yesterday's weather was gloomy, overcast, grey skied dismality.

Today we had sunshine, and a merger on the cards. Hope it works out. Hope the world regains its confidence and that the period of instability we are in is followed by a sensible time of pecuniary caution, rather than a boom and bust cycle that neither encourages stability or engenders hope in the future.

And I hope that we learn our lessons; that money doesn't make us happy; although I know a distinct lack of it doesn't mean instant happiness, there is a point beyond which we have enough and more is too much. As I sat yesterday writing out my Christmas shopping lists and compiling my budget I was very conscious that my three didn't need too much more, that they knew this and that there was a pleasing lack of big-ticket items on their lists. They almost naturally seem to have gone for things that encourage play; lego, card games (OK, from the latest TV hit, but still a game to play together) and Sylvanian families; my daughter is desperate for everything HSM and I am desperate to hold her off, if only for another year. Go for the cute furry rabbits, Princess, and leave the Troys alone.


  1. I love that picture with the meat and peas! And you're far too common sensical (is that a word) -- you should be running the financial institutions!

  2. Who wouldn't love sylvanian families! I still have stacks of those in my cupboard at my Mum's! Next time I am there I may have to dig them out!

  3. Glad to see another blogger with the word 'gripes' as a label!


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