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Is my wife’s Bristol "tradition" just a middle class fantasy? Anyone want a broken pushchair covered in cat hair?

Tom Winnifrith
Thursday 10 January 2019

The house is now on the market as we prepare for a move up to the Grim North. We already have five viewings lined up for Saturday so keep your fingers crossed. Ahead of that day I have been working hard at clearing out six years of accumulated junk in the garage.  There have been one or two rather good finds. There was a package marked fragile.

It must have arrived two or three years ago and for some reason I had not opened it. Lo and behold it is a 14 year old ( I guess it is now two or three years older) presentation bottle of Whiskey from my friend, and comrade from the Clontarf veterans rugby team, John Teeling and his sons eponymous distillery in Dublin. How very pleasant. Thank you John.

There is also an awful lot of junk.  The Mrs claims that there is an old Bristol tradition of leaving items outside your front door on the street for folks to just take away if they fancy. I rather suspect that this is the sort of Middle class fantasy about the good old days of community spirit and genteel working class poverty that Nick Hornby waffles on about in Fever Pitch. And as with Hornby’s Highbury I sense the working class Bristol of old that the Mrs thinks still might exist, never really did.

But who am I to argue. And so being a good German I have put out on the street a slightly broken pushchair, covered in hair from the neighbour’s cat who often sleeps in our garage. Oddly there have been no takers to date. I can’t think why.  The Mrs agrees that if everyone resists this great temptation by tomorrow it will join a lot of complete rubbish making a one way trip to the recycling bins. I will bet the ranch that it will be making that trip.

Meanwhile the garage is 80% cleared and cleaned and now looks almost smart. I hope that those viewing are duly impressed.

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About Tom Winnifrith
Tom Winnifrith is the editor of When he is not harvesting olives in Greece, he is (planning to) raise goats in Wales.
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