Stan (the father-in-law, not the cat) turned on our TV whilst waiting for tea to be served and sighed.
‘Pearl! [the mother-in-law], Pearl, I hope you’re recording this! Oh no! We’re missing it!’
‘Missing what?’ Pearl chirped back.
Stan shook the remote control at the TV as if to prompt recollection. ‘This!’ he cried.
‘It’s fine. I’ve apped it on iPlayer,’ Pearl replied reassuringly.
‘Yes! Good job! Will the apped version work on a… what d’you call it Sean?’
‘App,’ I replied.
‘That’s it. Have you apped it then?’
Technology is hard to keep up with isn’t it? Only the other day, somebody asked me if I’d watched a certain program on telly and I’d replied, “No, but I’ve taped it.” Before you know it, even “downloading” will be as archaic as “taping the Top 40 off the radio.”
But you can’t keep chasing forever. Sometimes you need to stop and take a breather. When your quarry is the latest technology, you’ll need to take a lot of them, and the best way to do this is to clear off to Wales and become a Luddite for a couple of days. If you can combine this with some exposure therapy for any irrational fears you may be harbouring then it’s a win-win situation…
‘You’re not too keen on waterfalls are you Ruthie?’ I asked over tea.
‘No I’m not. Why?’
‘Nothing really. Just wondering.’
Ruthie pointed a fork at me aggressively. ‘If you think we’re going traipsing half way around the country just so you can have a laugh at me trembling with fear then you can… well… frick off! You didn’t like it when I made you walk across Barmouth Bridge did you? Remember what happened there, dear?’
My grip tightened around my cutlery. I was doing a Uri Geller but with muscle, not mind. Yes I bloody well did remember going across Barmouth Bridge.
‘I was perfectly fine! Until I saw the ground between the slats. But look, how often does one have to go over a bridge?’
‘See? If you don’t confront your fear of waterfalls you’ll never be able to go anywhere near a river ever again.’
I placed my knife and fork down as if to complete my argument. Ruthie said nothing. Sometimes you just can’t argue with good old-fashioned logic…
Anyway, I’d already decided. We were to go and see the largest waterfall in the British Isles – Henrhyd Falls in Pen-y-cae, Wales.
I asked Ruthie to organise the details.
‘For therapy,’ I explained.
Ruthie remained silent. Some moods can last a bloody long time can’t they?