So, I had it all planned today. A nice long day's painting, for the first time in months. That was until I woke up (at 9.40, as I stayed up until 1.15 this morning watching Jurassic Park 2 and drinking Hobgoblin) and found we had no electricity. A little work on the internet on my phone yielded the information that it had gone off just after 4.30 am. Argh! No tea! My wife had already discovered from the neighbours that they had no electricity either. I had just been about to suggest that I go over to check with Miss Special K, the glamorous lingerie model who lives opposite, too. Foiled again!
Well, the loss of power shouldn't effect my painting, except that I was planning to work on my velociraptors, based on the photos I had taken of the life sized ones they have had at Waterloo station for the last two weeks. But all the pictures were in my computer. "That's what comes of relying on technology!" said the technophobe Old Bat. The UK Power Networks website said that the power would be back by 10.30am. I contemplated going to Sainsbury's for breakfast (no tea!) but my usual breakfast companion is in California. "Anyway, it probably won't have any power, either," said the Bat, who is usually well out the way on Sunday, working, but has been signed off sick for the next two Sundays, having had an operation.
"I need tea!" I said, distraught. "I need to do the ironing, do three loads of washing and mow the lawn," she wailed. "It's Islamic terrorists, the Chinese or the Russians!" she declared, picking on her usual most hated list, although even she couldn't put this one at the door of "immigrants". By 12.20 we still had no electricity. The Power Networks website had been updated and said that the power would now be out until 17.30pm. Then my phone ran out of battery. The Bat started to worry about things going off in the fridge. She is always worried about things going off and is constantly throwing away perfectly good food because it is one day past its sell by date. She thinks we will all get food poisoning, even though no one in the house has ever had food poisoning. "Yes, because I throw all the out of date food away!" she maintains, triumphantly. Actually, I end up eating most of it. We live in a household where I am hard pushed to think of one thing that all of us eat, so it is completely separate menus for every meal.
So I sat down and looked at the array of part painted figures on the workbench and vacillated. I had had it all planned. I got the base shading done on the dinosaurs yesterday and I wanted to do the patterns on their skin today. But no. I decided instead, continuing with the prehistoric theme, that I could finish some Lucid Eye Neanderthals but when I opened my pot of Humbrol 160, to finish off their furs, I discovered that the little that remained in the tin had solidified. Even worse there wasn't a spare pot in my reserve boxes. I could finish my Amazon princess, but she needs a jaguar skin shield (well, she doesn't need one but she really, really wants one) and my jaguar skin reference pictures were also in the computer. I was getting nowhere fast and then had to go out to Sainsburys to get something for Guy's lunch as we couldn't cook his tinned chicken in white sauce (he has limited taste in food, like the Old Bat). Another hour wasted but I did discover the power problem was just confined to our road, as the presence of five UK Power Networks trucks round the corner demonstrated. I could have had breakfast in Sainsbury's after all. Foiled again!
The Old Bat wouldn't let me open the utility room fridge in case it let all the cold out so my planned corned beef sandwich was out too. So, to the kitchen fridge where I found some "stale" rolls (they weren't really-three days past their sell by date) with "well past its sell by date" cheese (guess what? It was fine. Still no food poisoning). After lunch (no tea!) I settled down again to paint. I had just, for no real reason other than the fact that they were sat in front of me, started to do a bit on my Iron Duke Miniatures Indian Mutiny figures when my friend Bill came around on one of his many expensive bicycles; a Planet X titanium road bike, for those who are interested. "Planet X specialises in bikes at no nonsense prices", they say. If you consider £1900 a no nonsense price for a bike, that is.
Bill was one of my key tea drinking friends at college and sometimes takes a forty mile cycling detour to travel the three miles to our house for a cup of tea or three. "No tea!" I declared, deciding instead that we could go up to the The Bear for a pint of something more interesting instead. Then the lights came on. Powerless no longer! Four thirty pm. Of course with Bill and I in the garden I wasn't getting any painting done either.
Fortunately, of course, it is the longest day today so we have good light in the evening. Just enough time to finish my Lucid Eye cavegirl. More on whom later. Then I could do a bit more on my Indian Mutiny British. Except Humbrol 160 (Neanderthal clothes fur) is also British infantry rifle stocks colour. I couldn't do the next a stage on them. Foiled again!