I was in York yesterday. I was making good retail progress, and only had an hour available, and planned to get the 1612 train home. However, this was not to be.
I was on my way to the music shop. It was about 1545 by this time. En route, I happened on a craft fair that was taking place in the Guildhall. There was the usual man standing nearby holding a sign. I always feel rather sorry for the person doing the job that could be done equally well by a Â£6.99 plastic parasol base from B&Q, though I suppose such an implement would only cause redundancy...
From what I could see, the craft fair appeared colourful and enthralling. Since I was passing, I thought I'd call in and offer some youthful vibrancy to a spectacle that was clearly in need of it. However, I didn't have a lot of time, and it was for this reason that I passed through the doors with the look of a man in a hurry. I was still basking in a feeling of giddy jubilation on account of my day going so well. Imagine, thus, how it brought me down when a craft fair official started objecting to my actions.
"Hello", he greeted me, in a manner that suggested being warm and sincere was not really necessary.
"Hi!", I replied.
"Admission is fifty pence", he intoned.
I was somewhat displeased. I am not, as I am sure you will appreciate, accustomed to parting with money in conjunction with attending a spectacle where items are on sale, unless I'm taking one of the items home. However, I got the impression that this man was not to be tampered with, and equally that it would be somewhat awkward if I were to say "oh well, **** you" and leave. Reluctantly, I gave him 50p, and he said "that's fine, thank you." in a way that confirmed that I was now behaving within the regulations. I now felt defeated.
I could have left immediately, but I felt that since I'd payed 50p just to be present, it would have been a financial blow to withdraw without buying anything. I really would have wasted my money if I'd done that. As such, I had to walk round until I found something I would want to buy. I did about three laps, and it wasn't looking good.
In the end, I bought a Silver Jubilee coin for Â£3, which I regarded as a Silver Jubilee coin for Â£3.50, and also as my ticket to rejoining the outside world. Strictly speaking, this wasn't a "craft", but on this occasion I was prepared to overlook technicalities. I was hugely tempted to approach the man on the door, and ask him if I could have my deposit back now that I'd bought something. However, he was busy with another unwitting passer-by.
After this episode, I felt that my session in York had been compromised, and of course, I missed the train. It started to rain, and the music shop didn't have what I wanted, and I had to wait an hour for the next train, and it was all most unfortunate. This chronicle is one of many from yesterday. I won't publish them all!