Pain in the nether regions

What do my beloved and Tom Boonen have in common? Well, neither of them will be lining up at this weekend’s Amstel Gold Race because they’re both suffering from an inflamed foot. In Tom’s case, he’s aggravated a tendon, all that stomping on the pedals over the Paris-Roubaix cobbles. He does stomp on those pedals doesn’t he? Next time my cycling coach berates me for my lack of supple pedalling  like Contador I shall say I’m doing a “Boonen”. Just don’t expect to see me riding over cobbles anytime soon.

Meanwhile, my beloved has had a recurrence of his gout. An ailment which tends to invoke mirth rather than sympathy. We’re not exactly sure why it’s chosen to return although it’s struck him in the left and not the usual right foot. I suspect that because it was cold and wet while we were on vacation in the Basque country, my beloved failed to drink enough water. Either that or it was too much excellent Rioja! The downside, at least for me, was that his ailment delayed his departure by a whole 36 hours, and counting. He left early yesterday morning and will be back later this evening. I’ve barely had time to do a few things on my most recent to do list, let alone tackle any backlogs.

Yes, I am referring to the ironing mountain. I can’t wait until the Giro as I have a very dear friend coming to stay with me at the end of the month and so simply must clear the spare bedroom where all the ironing is now piled up on the bed. None of it mine, you understand. Maybe, during Amstel Gold on Sunday afternoon.

On our return from the Basque country I had a rather frustrating day, once again trying to deal with Orange. I should add that I suspect the issues would have taken a similar amount of time had I been dealing with BT or any, indeed, other service provider. The nice man who promised to send me the outstanding invoices simple failed to deliver everything! So, I’ve requested them again. My beloved then started agitating about the HD service which we seem to have lost. I told him I couldn’t face Orange again for a couple of days. But no, he decided he would deal with it. Whenever my beloved, a man with no patience whatsoever, decides to take matters in hand I’m always the one who gets dumped on.

Sure enough after a lengthy wait “on hold”, a couple of buttons and less than 30 seconds, the telephone receiver was abruptly shoved into my hand! To be fair, it’s useful to have two people to go through the various instructions – one to listen and one to push buttons on the remote –  but after a frustrating hour during, which I was unable to watch the Brabantse Pijl cycle race, our helpful technician went off duty without having resolved the problem. He promised a colleague would call back the following day, he hasn’t. I have planned the recall for Monday morning.

I’m now savouring my final hours of freedom and wondering how I might usefully spend them. Sadly, it looks as though my “panacea for all ills” aka a long ride on the bike might be out of the question, on account of the rain. But first, a large cup of coffee and L’Equipe will go some way to restoring my equilibrium.

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