Or how I ceased to exist, yet again.

I didn’t even see it coming this time. I hate making phone calls, but thought (very uncharacteristically) that I’d phone right now. Get it over with. Had looked at the new membership cards from the National Trust, and realised that now Daughter has had the temerity to turn 18, she needs to be removed from the family membership. In fact, the whole family membership needed to be removed. We could be a couple again. Aahhh. Sweet.

Not. Deep in my heart I knew that this being the National Trust I’d not be speaking to any Indians (no disrespect intended) and they’d be polite and it’d be quick. Well, the phone call was over soon enough. They needed to speak to the Resident IT Consultant and he was, like, not there, was he?

Readers, I didn’t even shout at them. I hung up and wrote them one of my famous letters. I used to be a great letter writer. My letters of complaint used to be – well, more frequent than of late.

We joined the NT as a couple back in the olden days. Two names for two people. When Offspring turned up we morphed into a Family, and when I got sick and tired of all four of us addressed as Dear Mister, I pointed it out to the NT and they were most understanding. Gave me several options of forms of address and on fairness and equality grounds I plumped for the ‘Dear Mr and Mrs Bookwitch and Offspring’ version. It was a bit of a mouthful, but it’s a computer what writes them letters anyway.

So when I picked up the phone to pass on the glad tidings that even Daughter is legally an adult, I had not cottoned on to the fact that I no longer am. Anything. So with no Resident IT Consultant standing by to assure them all was well, it was goodbye. I mean, how many misters do normally hang around the home to support their darling wives in making difficult phone calls during the day?

I thought the National Trust was supposed to be sort of posh. A bit like Marks & Spencer. You get nicer treatment for paying a bit more. They do like sending letters begging for money. They have not once objected to it when I sent them some. How could they even be sure I was allowed to? Had I consulted my mister?

Anyway, I spent a further ten minutes on writing to Fiona about it. That’s the Dame who runs the place. She might not care, but she’s a woman, so maybe. And the boss. The Resident IT Consultant might get round to making Daughter an official adult. Or he might not. We could always sneak her in as our child, seeing as they have sent us the membership cards and no doubt will help themselves to our money.

But how did they know I wasn’t about to hand them more money, and not just deprive them of the £5 for Daughter? Maybe, just maybe, I was feeling magnanimous enough to fork out for her very own membership? That’s another £23.50. Depends who pays them, I suppose.

It’s not as if they’re a bl***y bank, is it?

Lyme Park

It’d be a shame to lose our local watering hole. And that of Colin Firth.

Post Script – When Son turned up he promptly phoned up and cancelled his sister, impersonating the Resident IT Consultant. No problem. But not exactly honest. Being male helps.

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