Calamity Jen

Posted by Jeni in Ad Infinitum | 7 June 2017

My little red car had to be collected so that it could face it's MOT.

I only remembered at 7.00 o'clock this morning. I had to have a replacement car as I had to get into town for a voice over. The 11.39 train was my chosen chariot. I stumbled into the bathroom and called G, our very efficient, well intentioned, motor mechanic.

'I'll be there in ten' he said. As bright as a button.

I dressed quickly putting my fleecy blue starred trousers on backwards, and my t-shirt on inside out. Made my way to the garage, stepping over leaves, twigs and broken branches from the latest June downpour.

Drove the car to the end of the drive and there was G, standing at the bottom of the slope, dangling the key for his courtesy car.

I walked back to the cottage, locked the door behind me, stepped out of my trousers and crawled back into bed with the actor who was snoring like a contented alligator.

I set the arm for 10.00, but woke earlier. Had a leisurely shower, applied me lippy, piled up 4.80p's worth of coins for the car park, the morning sun shining lemony through the kitchen window.

I went to my drawer to take out my wallet with my Senior rail card, Oyster card, bus pass, bank card, riffled through the joss sticks, cheque books, and receipts. It wasn't there.

A moment to recollect where and what I had done yesterday, the slow dawning of reality hit me. I had left my cards in my little red car. I put my phone on charge, grabbed the courtesy car keys, shouted out to the snoozing thespian, slid over the leaves to the car and drove like the clappers to the MOT garage.

Nellie the Rut was sitting outside the workshop, her door slightly ajar. Bloody god job I turned up otherwise her juice would have spilled out. Grabbed my cards, sprang back into the courtesy car and turned on the ignition.


Closed the door and tried again. Nothing.

Turned the ignition off, on, checked the lights, wiped the beads of sweat off my forehead. NOTHING.

Ran into the garage and the MOT man came and tried. Starter motor, battery, whatever it was the courtesy car was kaput. Dead as a Dodo. I had no phone, the the was taking away. The 11.39 was still within my grasp but....

I borrowed the garages phone since my mobile was charging on the glasses cabinet in the piano room. I called the old git.

'1p98723gkjsdv*$@ 9997avfpew8h' I said in perfect Anglo Saxon.

I knew he would be longer than shorter since this morning of all mornings, there were three sets of traffic lights outside our road. Four hundred men in yellow jackets were digging up 4 inches of earth.

Jim arrived. We had enough time to go back home, collect my phone and then drive to the station.

The 11.39 was 2 minutes late.

I meditated to Charing Cross, then walked swiftly to Great Tichfield Street.

On Regents Street I asked a post woman if she could point me to Great Tichfield Street.

'Yes I can Jeni, ' she said.
'Tich is down to Top Shop, walk towards Tottenham Court Road, it's second on your left.'

It's a good job I was on my best behaviour. I arrived on the dot of 1.00.

Sat down with three other artistes and we did our stuff. 90 minutes later I was back on the 3.00 o'clock train. Tried to do the Evening Standard crossword but have issues with George Osbornes editing.

Arrived in time for the 16.02 bus, full of noisy schools children and ancient travellers. Saw the old git drive past the bus, got off outside the pub, walked up the hill. Tickled the house key from its hiding place, fed the cat and celebrated my legal car.

Drove to the shop bought green veg and grapefruit juice, home to rustle up a stir-fry and settled down for supper in front of the box.

It's now 23.48, the 'oosbind is nearly home. The duck legs are sizzling in the oven, the stir fry replenished with greenery for him. Jazz FM is on, and my head is nodding....

Tomorrow we vote for our future. I'v got my polling card ready, and not a clue who will win. Perhaps the angels of mercy will be fluttering around, and whoever gets in will have our best interests at heart.

Out polling station is in the middle of green fields. An old church hall where my dawter used to go to nursery school. It has been home to the ballot box for years and years. If only walls could talk eh?

Jeni Barnett tells of her scrumptious time at Good Food Live in her first audiobook! Download NOW from iTunes


1. At June 20, 2017 11:02 AM 'L' wrote:

Jeni where are you hiding??! We need your wise opinions about all the calamities that have befallen this city over the past few weeks.
For example:

KH was fired from LBC - At last!
London Bridge
Grenfell Towers
Finsbury Park
PM votes

Just a short list to keep you busy! Ha!

Make the most of the heat. I'm swimming regularly at the men's pond in Hampstead Heath, sheer bliss! Have you ever tried it, the ladies pond or the mixed one? If not, it's a must. Nothing like getting your kit off and diving off the spring board into the cool waters. I dare you to try it. Let me know if you plan to go as would be lovely to meet you there.

Wishing you all the best Jeni.

All my love. xxx

Copyright 2007, Jeni Barnett. Website produced by Chopstix.