It all focused around my new car initially. I changed the XTrail for a Peugeot 307 estate, very nice it was too, for a day. Then the engine management light came on and the passenger footwell filled up with water when driving in the rain. "No problem" said the garage and they set about sorting it all out. Well, four weeks later and the car having three stays at their garage totaling two weeks and still it wasn't fixed.
I got my money back but lost the cost of the extended warranty I bought - not happy.
So there I am, a week to go before I do a couple of thousand miles across France, a busy week ahead with guiding commitments etc and no car! A frantic search on Autotrader, a couple of cars viewed and I'm now the proud owner of a Mondeo estate. Fingers crossed it lasts longer than the piece of French crap.
The guiding was with a couple of regulars one of which, Anthony, was a good friend of Hugh Falkus and was bequeathed his section of the Cumberland Esk. He's a very affable bloke who's a barrister and professional cellist. His brother, Paul, is a dentist but they both spend most of the day talking about women. Its always amused me that no matter who you are or from what social background you come, put two or three guys together on a river bank and the banter and humour is the same.
The river's fishing well under par for this time of the year. They had a decent barbel each and a few chub on day one. The next day I took them to one of my 'bankers' - off piste as it were. Its a swim that should have been groaning under the weight of all the barbel but we didn't get a touch. A quick dash to another spot and a good chub and an nice barbel sent them home happy but it was hard work. It turned out that we were the only people on the fishery to have barbel on the first day.
I hope that it picks up by the weekend as there's the big annual piss-up come fish-in when the Northern boys under the organisation of Biker Boy Rocca and the Midlanders rallied by mountain walker Carl (who's nicked my identity) Salter descend on Bredwardine and much merriment ensues. Its always a great do, I just hope that the fish oblige.
I've also been putting the last few items together for my France trip, I can't possibly have forgotten anything can I? I just hope that if I have its something I can get over there.