It’s that time of the year again when the sight of the sun shining through a dusty window brings on a panic attack. Not because the window is dusty (who cares), but because it is a reminder that sooner, rather than later, one’s pasty white limbs are going to have to emerge from their cocoon of thick tights, long sleeves and longer hemlines and put themselves on public display. This year, I vowed things would be different. This year, I would be prepared. This year I would not need hypnotherapy to confront my fear of sh . . . sho . . . shor . . . shorts! In a nutshell, I was going to get fit! I was pleased with this intention and things got off to a good start with a trip out to St Margaret’s Bay (a rather beautiful part of Kent). The intention was to go for a brisk walk along the cliff tops, whilst keeping a weather eye out over the English Channel for signs of a Napoleonic invasion. Actually that phobia belongs to my husband who, in a past life, might even have been Nelson. I wouldn’t tell everyone this, but as we were going to sleep last night, he leaned across and whispered lovingly in my ear ‘Kiss me, Hardy.’ I digress. The intention, as I say was to kick off my get-fit campaign by going for a nice walk and, indeed, we reached our destination with no trouble. That came just as we got out of the car and I managed to catch my finger in the door, which my other half promptly locked, thereby ensuring no means of escape. By the time my screams penetrated his brain, the damage had been well and truly done and, upon its release, my finger looked like the leavings of a sausage after a Rottweiler has had a go. Our walk, therefore, turned out to be no more than a step – two, actually – one out of the car and one back in.
Was I defeated? No! Bloodied and bowed? Hell, yes, but being made of stern stuff, I vowed not to let a semi-amputated finger scupper (Napoleon/Nelson again!) my plans and so, two days later, I set off for my local gym and an appointment with Biceps Brian. I looked the part – I really did. New trackie bottoms, ample tee-shirt, brand new trainers (all singing, all dancing with interchangeable soles that promise to make your calves look like Linford Christie’s in only five minutes a week). Alas, all the machines required pulling or pushing , a big no-no with a bloodied, broken, lacerated finger. And so BB (we were on intimate terms in a very short space of time – parting with hard cash facilitates these matters) advised me to stick with the treadmill. I did, for fifteen minutes, till the skin of my heel stuck to my brand new trainer. I peg-legged home – in my stocking feet. Fitness? Pah, it’s a mug’s game! Now, does anyone know who stocks opaque tights throughout the summer?