An occasional glance in the mirror sometimes reveals that not everything about me is in the best state of repair. A fondness for those little snacks which make life bearable has possibly grown the six pack to a 10.5 pack, or even unpacked. I not sure of the exact measurement. This morning, for no reason at all, we declared a swim would be in order before my partner went off to work. By our standards this smacks of reckless enthusiasm but, sure enough , off we went and did the obligatory four lengths before retiring to our changing rooms glowing with a sense of self-righteous joy.
Normally I like to pad out any visit with a few of those things which make sport bearable. So during the swim my mind will be focussing on the coffee and cake which will follow, together with a quick glance at the papers to see if anything is happening anywhere. This early in the morning, and with the time pressure we were under, such soothing luxuries were no more than fantasies. This was exercise army style : just the drive, swim, change and return.
As I waited in reception for my partner to get ready I searched around desperately for some small luxury to ease the pain of virtue. In front of me, on the reception desk, was a coffee machine. I advanced on it with confidence and searched for instructions. There were none, but surely I could work this out now my brain was operating under the power of freshly zested oxygen. £1.50 for a cappuccino. Not much to understand there I thought. I took the money out and placed it on the reception desk. The man was not there so I thought I’d just get on with it. I pressed the cappuccino button and it said £1.50 in a little green luminous box. Yes, I’d got that bit but I’d rather like my coffee now I said. The machine was strangely silent and offered no advice, so I backed away in puzzlement. Advancing again I pushed the cappuccino button once more. Mmmm still £1.50. No inflation, I was glad to see , but still no coffee..
Finally I noticed the small , apparently camouflaged slot for the coins and all became clear. Clink clink clink wzzzzz and out came the coffee. I felt strangely elated after this latest brush with technology, and when the man appeared again behind the desk and asked me if I needed anything, I beamed at him trying to ooze competence , adopting the profile of one whose deeply imbedded abilities render assistance unnecessary.
When my partner appeared I waved my coffee at her and asked her if she would like a cup. She declined which robbed me of the chance to display my new skill. Still modesty is everything . No need to show of this early in the morning.