Addendum:

No, that can’t be right.  An addendum must surely come at the end, after the piece has been read. 

Perhaps, ‘explanation’ is the more apposite word.

Explanation:

Why this week’s ‘Life in Laytonia’ is so late coming online. 

2 words:  Broadband Provider. 

No, let’s make that, 3 words:  Rubbish Broadband Provider.  No, let’s go for 4, or 5 or even 6 words:

EFFING RUBBISH INCONSIDERATE EXPLETIVE BROADBAND PROVIDER!!

They will be named next week!!

In the meantime, please read this week’s  musings as if you were still in Lockdown 2…

* * * * * * * * * * *

Great, great news!   Not one, but at least four potentially successful vaccines are currently being developed

Wearing my ‘George-Centric’ hat, this is especially good news for me!

Let me explain:

Thanks to the genes passed on to me by my dear late dad, I am blessed with a healthy head of hair.  It grows at a hell of a rate which suits Danny, my hairdresser, perfectly. More important, it suits his cash flow. 

If the rest of my body had grown at the rate my hair grows, I would be a man mountain rather than the diminutive 5’ feet 6 inch chap that I am.

Actually, 5’ feet 6 inches may be something of an exaggeration.  I reckon that was last year’s height because my body is shrinking rapidly  – and sadly, some parts are shrinking more rapidly than others!

There is, I am delighted to say, no problem in the hair growth department.  My hair grows more quickly than my lawn, which in the mowing season needs cutting at least twice a week

Following our leader’s National Lockdown announcement on the 23rd March, I cursed my lack of forward planning. 

Knowing that the lockdown was imminent, why on earth hadn’t I thought ahead about the abundant thatch liberally sprouting on my head?  I reckon the weight of the hair was affecting my thought processes.

Before lockdown, my Saturday morning routine was breakfast with ‘The Boys’.  We would all assemble at our local favourite coffee house and noisily put the world to rights. 

During lockdown our weekly gathering had to rely on Zoom.

By mid-April, the moment I signed into our Zoom get-together, my hair became a talking point. 

By the beginning of May, the popping up of my face (and hair) on the screen was the cause of much merriment and laughter.  (I did say my hair grows quickly).

Come June, I/the hair became the butt of more teasing and increasingly tiresome jokes.

The fairer sex I’m pleased to say, appeared to like my ‘new look’.  They approved of my silver/grey flowing locks. 

Compliments ranged from ‘Mmm, very distinguished’ to ‘Mmm, very Frank Finlay!’

Whoa!  Being compared to that fine actor Frank Finlay, I liked it!  A leonine head of hair if ever you saw one.

The insults from ‘The Boys’, on the other hand, ranged from ‘Mmm, very Maggie Thatcher’ to ‘Let’s have a whip round, the poor bugger can’t afford a haircut’!

Cue for much laughter.

True, it was a touch bouffant and watching the current series of The Crown I find myself wondering now if it was more Gillian Anderson than Frank Finlay.  But liberal use of what hairdressers call ‘product’ and a splash of water worked a treat.

To be honest, heartened by the lovely things being said by ‘The Ladies’ who included Moya – further encouragement – I was beginning to like my ageing luvvie thespian look.

                                                            Mid June 

                                        The ageing ‘luvvie’ thespian look

Meanwhile, the Zoom Saturday Coffee Mornings with ‘The Boys’ continued. 

Along with the jibes, taunts, sneers, wise-cracks, digs, put-downs, hair-baiting – that last one was mine, not Roget’s – it was relentless.

It is at this point that I would like to make an observation:

‘The Boys’ , including me, number eight altogether.  Seven of the eight are follically challenged.  Draw your own conclusions!!

July 1st 2020

National Lockdown (1) over.  Shops open.  Restaurants open.  Leisure Clubs open. Hairdressers open.  No excuse for not getting my hair cut.  Except…

We have, from the off, been so careful in Laytonia.  We have been living the social-distanced life. 

No going to shops.  No going to restaurants.  No going to hairdressers.  Why on earth would we tempt Covid fate now?

Post lockdown, I had no wish to eat out to help out.  I had no desire to sit in a restaurant and I certainly didn’t fancy sitting inside a hair dressing salon however many masks and screens were in sight.

Besides, I was proud of my flowing locks.  They were growing on me.  Literally!

In mid-July I wrote the following:

 “Whilst chatting on the ‘phone to a friend, I jokingly announced that I was not going to get a haircut until a vaccine had been discovered.   The bet was made!

I have made numerous bets with this particular chum and I have invariably lost.  This time, I am determined to collect the fiver.

We are all praying that a Covid 19 vaccine will be discovered soon.  I have no wish to be pessimistic, but I fear that by the time it comes, I’ll be ready and possibly the right age to play the lead in “Methuselah – the Musical”.  

The above extract is from ‘Life in LaytoniaNumber 10, written in the days before I had sage advice – ooh, ‘SAGE’, that’s an apt adjective when discussing the vaccine – written in the days before the experienced journalist, Jaci Stephen (jacistephen.com) advised that I give my weekly rant a title rather than a number.

Eminently sensible and downright obvious.

This week’s apt title:  FAREWELL METHUSELAH!!

For the simple reason that I have won my bet.  With the confirmed discovery of the vaccine, I can now arrange to have my shoulder-length hair Samsoned!

And not before time.  Compliments from the ladies are long gone.  Moya’s offers to cut my hair have been spurned.  I look disgusting.

With Lockdown 2 impositions now in force, together with its ancillary consequences (crowded streets, crowded shops – those that were allowed to trade – crowded parks, crowded everywhere) all hairdressers are closed. 

How am I going to celebrate my win?   (Oh, and celebrate the discovery of the vaccine of course, that goes without saying.  That’s why I didn’t say it).

No problem – Danny Scissorhands, I discover, is happy to come to me. He tells me during our telephone conversation that he will wear a mask and assures me that he can do a socially distanced haircut outside.

I don’t see how my haircut can be socially distanced unless he’s using a pair of edging shears but if it’s outside and we both wear masks, that’s good enough for me.

Danny: In Turkey, we do many haircut outside.

George: Turkey’s a bit warmer than here.  Let’s hope it doesn’t rain.

Danny: Not matter.  Have to wet your hair anyway…’

Sitting on a stool in front of the garden mirror, warmed by the patio heater, Danny does his stuff.

Snip, snip, snip, snip.

I look at my reflection.  Still a long way to go.

Snip, snip, snip, snip.

Grey tumbleweed rolls towards the lawn, chased by the dog.

Snip, snip, snip, snip.

George: (suddenly) Stop!  Stop!

Danny looks alarmed.  Well, as alarmed as one can look whilst wearing a mask.

George: I meant to take a photo.

How could I have forgotten?  It’s the weight of all that hair.  I can’t think straight!

Danny: Why take photo?  It look ‘orrible!  I take photo when job done…

I persuaded him to take these (not quite) before & after photographs:

                                                            George – half cut!

                                                                Finished item

I rather miss the Methuselah look….