A Quiet Life

In an ideal world, I’d actually like a quiet life.  Not in terms of being (and/or keeping) busy, but in terms of once I get home. Once I’m there, I’d quite happily have a place with no noise.

Yes, there’d be a TV and so on, but that’s all noise that I control.  I’m thinking more at the moment about other stuff, the noise I can’t control, and that sometimes drives me crackers.

The Bengal is one of the main culprits on this, if I’m honest – as soon as I get home, I’m being shouted at. It’s not like she’s hungry or anything – she’s just shouty.  Sometimes it’s even before I get through the door – if it’s late evening (even if I’ve popped home in the day to make sure she’s fed etc.) it’s not unknown for the sodding cat to be sat outside waiting for me, and shouting the moment she sees me, like a mum going “And what time do you call this!”  And it doesn’t let up for bloody ages. It’s exhausting.

Alongside that, I have the joys of neighbours. Throughout the lockdown/shutdown/slowdown, they’ve both seemed determined to be out in their yards, playing music loudly, and having loudspeaker/hands-free conversations on their phones – and it’s even seemed like they’re in direct competition sometimes. So it’s not been unusual for me to come home and not even be able to open the back door, because of the noise war going on.

All I want is for things to be quieter. I’m generally super-tired at the moment, which also makes me more sensitive to it all, and far far grumpier about the entire thing.

Recently I’ve even been thinking about moving – some of which is because of those neighbours – although with the looming of Brexit etc., I’ve made the decision to not jump things just yet. But there’s still the potential for the same to happen again.

In some ways – hell, in most ways – I’d be happy to be a hermit, to be out in the middle of nowhere with zero human contact on a day-to-day basis.  The only problem with that concept is that the really out-of-the-way places then don’t have the other thing I want/need in life – a decent speedy broadband connection.

I’m sure there’s a balance to be found somewhere, and I’m sure I’ll figure it all out. For now though it’s just a bit bloody annoying. </grouch>

Bank Holidays

Here in the UK, today is a Bank Holiday – and that link is an interesting read, if you want to know more about why they exist etc.

Since moving to the current house – in my head it’s still the ‘new’ house, but that’s patently untrue, having been there five years now – I’ve become far less of a fan of Bank Holidays, mainly for one significant reason.

I live near(ish) to the only pub in my village. Usually that’s fine, there’s little-to-no trouble, and it’s all pretty decent. I’m yet to darken its doors, but that’s a different thing entirely. People come, people go, and it’s all good.

On Bank Holiday weekends, however, people seem to become fuckbags. The pub itself usually has some kind of event on – a band or whatever – and opens a bit longer, and both of those things are fine.  But by the time we’re mid-evening, there are always people screaming and shouting, having arguments, and generally being cocks. And that goes on ’til gone two in the morning. Every Damn Time.

You can hear these arguments all around the place – the people involved try walking/stomping away, only to be followed by the other party, screaming and yelling to “get back ‘ere” and whatever (or my favourite, chasing after them yelling “Go on, fuck off then!”, which I still can’t get my head round)  Fortunately, it rarely gets nasty – once or twice it has, but usually it’s just loud and twatty.

For me, it’s unavoidable. I live close enough to be in earshot, and to be on the main route back to most of the rest of the village, so short of being away on Bank Holiday weekends, I can’t miss what’s going on.  It’s not a huge thing, just an annoyance, and it grinds on me after a while.  The thing is, it also makes me not want to visit the pub at other times – and to be fair, I don’t need much of an excuse on that score anyway. It’s just another factor that adds to my Reasons Not To Bother.

Reasons to Kill

In some ways, I’m pretty sure I’m actually getting less tolerant of things over the years.  I know that’s a bit of a challenge in comparison to how I used to be when I was living in Manchester (and ranting about train journeys every damn weekend) but I’m noticing it more and more.

In particular, when I’m at home, there are a couple of things that mean it’s probably a good thing I don’t have access to a baseball bat.

The first one is done by a few people, but drives me bananas. People pull up in their cars outside my house (which is on a main road through the village, but has parking spaces right outside) and sit there with the engines running. I don’t quite know why it drives me as barmy as it does, although I do know it’s the noise of the engine that does it. Yesterday it was a British Gas van that sat outside for a good hour, engine running, and audibly trying to use his hands-free phone. (You know it’s too fucking loud when you can hear that from not just outside the car, but inside the house!)  If I’d had a baseball bat, I’d have gone outside and tapped on his bloody windscreen with it. Dickhead.

The other one is more specialised, although still related. When I’m at home in the mornings (not an altogether common occurrence, but all the same) it gets busy with the school run – the local school isn’t far away, and the car-park opposite my house is the nearest place for all the parents. Every day, every damn day, one particular parent pulls up in their 4×4 that’s never been off-road in its life. They take their spawn out to go to school, turn on the alarm on the car, and fuck off.

And every damn day, the alarm goes off, and keeps going off. There’s obviously something wrong with it, and the owner doesn’t give a shit.

Again, at some point I’m going to walk over and give it something to actually fucking beep about.