“Right Old Girl,” Her ladyship rolled me out onto the courtyard. “Right, a big day tomorrow. We are off to Cardiff - The Metropolis of Wales. I’ve fixed it for you to go to Waterstones in the city centre so that we can do a book signing.”
I had to wonder why on earth she needed me along. She only uses these events for a bit of cheap self-seeking publicity. She started to load me up with boxes of books, her luggage and the loud clink of a heavy plastic bag suggesting that she was loading me up with a large stock of wine as well. The Asthmatic Barking Dog looked on confused. She was filling up my rear seat, suggesting to him that he wasn’t coming with us. Undaunted, he plonked himself in front of me and went to sleep, realising as he drifted off into the land of nod, that Her Ladyship couldn’t move me without his acquiescence.
But canny as ever, Her Ladyship then started to toss his things into her modern car. “Right Dog, come on, let’s go.” One eye opened to see what the fuss was about, showed some reaction to the fact that all his possessions were now in that car’s boot and then he went back to sleep. “I said… Come on Dog, let’s go. You are going on holiday.” He ignored her once more and she marched over, lead in hand and attached it to his collar. “Come on Old man. Let’s get you into the car.” The Asthmatic Barking Dog slowly got up and wandered over to the modern car and they were off.
She returned minutes later, parked up that car and clambered into me and within minutes, we headed out the drive and she steered me for Cardiff. It was a lovely sunny day and I really enjoyed the journey. Three and a half hours later, I was parked up and Her Ladyship had tucked into her first G&T.
The following Morning, she came out to polish and smarten me up. “Right Miss Daisy, off to the City Centre now. The City Council has given me a specific route to get to The Hayes. So here we go.” Ten minutes later we arrive at Womanby Street.
“That’s odd,” said Her Ladyship. “They said that someone would remove the bollards and they haven’t. Hang on.” She whipped out her phone and punched at the dial. “Hello... Yes… I was told that if I came to Womanby Street I could get my car through to Waterstones. I am doing a book signing you see… What? Who? How? Well they gave me this number… So you can’t help me then? Great!” She threw the phone onto my floor.
“It seems we are on our own, Old Girl. Hang on, I think we can get through here.” Her Ladyship then paced the gap between two of the bollards. “Five of my feet Old Girl. You are Four foot four.” She clambered in, started me up and inched me through the gap. We were nearly through when a shopkeeper came out and lifted one of the bollards out of its hole. “Oh? So they come out on their own do they?” The shopkeeper nodded. “Thank you, thank you very much. This is going to be easy now Old Girl. Come on then.”
We proceeded very slowly towards our destination; that is until two bollards only four feet apart confronted us. Her Ladyship got out and attempted to lift the bollard out. “Oh Shit – Damn – Bloody – Bugger – Cuss. I can’t move it.” A street sweeper wandered up to us.
“You won’t get that out,” he said.
“I’ve noticed,” Her Ladyship replied curtly. “I need to get to Waterstones. I’ve had permission from the council. How do I get there?”
Well don’t say I told you, but if you turn round and head down there, turn left into Westgate Street. Then two turnings down, go left. It’s a one-way street and you’ll be going in the wrong direction. But no one will mind.”
“Are you sure?” Her Ladyship seemed worried. I wasn’t surprised, I was too.
“It’ll be all right. Go up there, straight across St, Mary Street, up to the end and you’ll be at Waterstones.” Her Ladyship was very doubtful.
“Well, if you are sure… Then here we go.” It worked, except that we met a Mercedes coming the correct way down the one-way street, but I was able to get out of its way. Then through a couple of bollards with an inch either side, followed by a round of applause from the shoppers and we were there.
“Well Old Girl. A few minutes late, but we made it. I’ll go and let them know I’ve arrived. You sit here and behave.” Could I do anything else?
It seemed a long day with a lot of people examining me closely. A Big Issue seller was offering people the opportunity to sit in me and have their photo taken if they bought a copy of the Issue. I though that very enterprising of him and thank God You Know Who didn’t notice. There would have been hell to pay.