Recently Mrs P and I had a row.

As is the way with these things we both entered the "huff" stage going in different directions.

It's quite possible also we both spent 0.3 seconds thinking life might have been easier if we'd taken up with that hot boy/girl back in Form 2 instead.

And following the usual timeline with rows we both came round quickly to get on with the more important aspects of life and now things are again all rosy in the life of a columnist and his lover.


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Now I say we came around quickly. In my case it was very much at pace, pushed along by a bolt from the blue. Literally.

Let me explain.

Our row started from nothing about nothing like, I'm guessing, many do.

You can fill in the background yourself but basically Mrs P suggested I had put a lot of weight on recently and I took umbrage, suggesting in retort that she had done something in the washing process to make my shirt shrink.

There was potential for this row to escalate beyond control so to cut a long story short (I know. It's me saying that!) I decided to remove myself from the location and head into town.

Now anybody who has "stormed off" before will know you just go. There and then. It's not dependent on what the weather is doing outside.

I wish it had been. Where I live it was bucketing down with the occasional growl of thunder adding to the scene.


Nonetheless I made a run for it. I was half saturated by the time I got to the car and totally sodden by the time I'd found the right key (isn't it always the way?) and got in.

My mood did not improve as I drove into town, mulling over what had just happened.
I am 55 years old, I told myself. Yes, I understand she loves me and wants me to be around so we can grow old together, join Grey Power, get pensioner discounts and have fun with grandchildren.

But a little deviation from the regular diet by way of the odd pie or savoury here and there isn't going to give me a heart attack is it? Oh, and occasionally I might grab a donut. Or sometimes a bar of chocolate. Or a bag of salted peanuts.

Anyway. You get the picture.

So I'm driving along, still in the huff stage when I spot my favourite bakery.

"Go on," said Little Voice inside my head. "You are the captain of your own ship, the master of your own destiny, the author of your own story." (Little Voice reads a lot of classical stuff).

So before I know it my car has gone into auto pilot and pulled up in the torrential rain and thunder outside the bakery and seconds later I'm inside doing battle with my old mate, Will Power, as I check out what's on offer.

The last of the exquisitely tasty savouries this place makes is positively yelling at me from inside its warm cabinet.

Resistance is futile.

Little Voice convinces me it is the right thing to do. Not to purchase the delectable delight would be akin to giving up my individuality. I would forever be controlled. Basically a robot in the hands of She Who Must Be Obeyed.

In a daze money is handed over and before I know it I'm outside again with the warmth of the savoury seeping through the brown paper bag, filling me with hope for the future. One little bite would cure all the ills in my world. I would again be a man, able to stand tall among my peers.

Or so I thought.

As my tastebuds moved in for the kill, savoury in my slightly trembling hands, a massive bang of thunder rocked the space above me and lightning lit up the sky.

Jolted from my mesmerised state I gave a shriek my 2-year-old granddaughter would have been proud off and dropped the treasured savoury.

In slow motion it fell to the pavement, collapsing into a sodden mess ... like my hopes for a brighter future.

I searched for Little Voice but he was gone. Probably hiding somewhere in the inner recesses of my brain. Chased away by the thunder and lightning but also probably wondering if Mrs P did, in fact, have friends in high places and wondering whether he should be messing with them.

As for me, right there and then on the footpath outside the bakery, I decided enough was enough. I would take control so I went straight back into the shop to sort it.

The flower shop that is. Right next door to the bakery. And I bought her a big bunch of flowers to say sorry.