‘Seize The Moment’, they say! Yesterday I did. The seed was sown the day before as I queued in our little post office, no larger than a small lounge (think that’s what it used to be), as we coiled around in ever decreasing circles, just to get everyone in from the cold. Two post ladies fought bravely to serve us, hindered by two Internet salesmen (I suspected), as they passed an endless stream of identical parcels to our heroines. Digressing slightly, I must say we LOVE our Post Office. The stand-alone one shut last year to make way for a block of flats, leaving only the Post Office kiosk in Merritts, a small one-stop-shop – a sign taken too literally by our Silver Shoppers, the Pensions-R-Us people. Yes, they have a great time catching up but the busy lunchtime shopper is time-challenged and must forego such pleasures.
We’re militant in Gloucestershire, having fought to reverse Library closures and then staging a local uprising when our post office closed. I openly admire the entrepreneur, for that’s what he must be, who seized his moment by converting a room in his Club into a post office! Brilliant. Parking behind the Club. This flash of brilliance piqued my interest in what was else happened at The Club, apart from Bingo nights, etc. I noticed that, on dry days, there was often a crowd wearing black enjoying a beverage outside the front door, banished into the great outdoors for a smoke. Observation and investigation revealed the Club’s enterprising owner, upon realising there were no refreshment facilities at the Crematorium (about a mile or so away), was offering ‘welcoming wakes’! Just love this chap’s insight. Never judge a book by its cover – upon first glance the owner doesn’t present with obvious entrepreneurial flair – shame on me for so doing.
Anyway, back to the queue. Having done all the small talk – weather, close proximity to each other, etc – my eyes drifted to notices blu-tacked on the wall. Heck, there’s only so much eye contact and smiling a girl can handle. The sap’s rising out there as Spring approaches but, completely suprising myself, I felt a rush of energy permeate my being as my mind said “YES” to the invitation to a new Pilates class starting yesterday. Think I’ve been watching too much Strictly Come Dancing type stuff. All that talk about ‘core strength’. Was my core secure? Nope. Decision made. The venue was the Barnwood Reading Rooms at 11.45am. Whenever I passed this strange little brown stone building set back from the road, I imagined old ladies sitting in a Victorian front parlour surrounded by functional furniture and the odd aspidistra but I’m brave, I can face it.
Up early and and ready to fold myself into strange shapes, son remarks on my ebullient mood so break the news I’m off to Pilates. He’s thrilled – my teenagers have been trying to get me ‘beach ready’, as they put it, for two years! Off I go. Have to park in Post Office (Club) car park. Spring from car wearing thinish top and trousers. As I power walk across the car park, an old girl alighting from her vehicle shouts “Aren’t you cold dear?” Reply in the negative, although now notice biting wind clawing at my midriff. I smile radiantly and power walk all the way to the Reading Rooms. Door locked and no signs of life so I circumnavigate the building and realise I am alone! Never one to give up easily, I knock on the huge unyielding midnight blue painted locked door. Am I stupid or just desperate? Thwarted but keen to sort out my core, I resolved to return. Power walking back to the car, the wind seemed just a little colder and I realise my enthusiasm had kept the chill at bay. I had rung Pilates Zoe prior to departure but voicemail response encouraged me to think she was en route. She did ring me back. “It’s not on today as only two people were interested”, she said. Yep, I know. Next week, perhaps? Seizing the moment hadn’t caused me any damage and I’m keen to improve my health – even if it has taken me two years to act on my New Year Resolution. Is this the sport pour moi? Well, a little abdominal cladding shouldn’t prevent me rolling on the huge exercise ball – heavens, the midwife had me doing that in the delivery suite!