Virginia Barton

20 January 2015: Downtime


20 January 2015


Every day, after lunch, BH takes to his tipping chair. Not long ago it was his bed that he took to, but he decided he slept better at night if he didn’t sleep too much during the day. (Replacing a large supper with a large lunch is also part of the plan: everyone will tell you that aged digestive systems cope better running half empty. We resent this. But if pressed will admit it’s probably true.)




So BH crashes onto his chair for all the world like the old chap in Frasier; incidentally one of his TV favourites. Since Christmas he has been tucked up with a triple thermal Sherpa rug, purchased online from a pet store. I think it’s for dogs-in-cars. It cost thirty quid — a quid being slang for an English pound.

The Guardian website ( suggests various origins of the word quid; my favourite derives from The Bank of England notes (posh ones) which were made in Quidhampton. Hence the name quids.  A quid pro quo also sounds feasible.


107696One of the many despicable habits one picks up in this age of the computer is Googling. Time was when one would have hunted down the word quid in a variety of dictionaries; it would have taken some time and very likely a cup of coffee, or two phone calls – even a trip to the library. Now, a few taps on the old PC eh voila!

No wonder people get lonely, one interacts with nobody, merely a mouse. Before, there were two others on the end of telephone lines which would likely lead to chatting, let alone library staff. Has it ever struck you that your throat could dry out from not using your voice?


Being a European BH has always favoured the postprandial nap. This was one of the things that seriously annoyed me when we first married. If he could get through five weekdays at the office without sleeping, why not at home?

“What a waste of time! You could be out there mowing the lawn; or helping peel this heap of potatoes for YOUR relations! Or clearing out that rubbish shed of yours!”

Now we live where where almost everybody has a rest in the afternoon, and I too stretch out  on my bed and nod over a book. Sorry, Kindle. Sometimes he tucks me up in a threadbare Shetland… sound of violins…






Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


(c) All Rights Reserved. Site Designed by Magtype CR