Phew! What a scorcher

party-pictureMingling with guests at the Piccotts End summer garden party on another scorching hot day  I was amazed to learn just how many boffins inhabit the village. We have professors, doctors, scientists and IT experts, not to mention a clutch of  lawyers and media luminaries in our midst. My latest ‘discovery’ is that one of our committee members, Ruth Gilbert is Dr Ruth Gilbert. Ruth is a lecturer at the University of Bedfordshire and her specialist subject is virology. She won’t thank me for telling you that. If you have a bad cold or the flu please don’t ask Ruth, go and see one of our two medical doctors instead!

It was a pleasure to meet the village’s newest residents Paul Borg, his wife Madelena and their family, They have moved to 146 PE where Paul works on music production and Madelena, who is an artist from Sao Paulo, Brazil, runs a web site selling antique haberdashery.

The roads are quieter and the usual hustle and bustle outside Gaddesden Row JMI every morning and afternoon is over for another summer. I drive past here every day and this month I thought how annoying it must be for them to be among the last schools to break up just as the heatwave comes to an end!

My journey to work coincides with an entertaining quiz on the local radio station Heart fm. Stuart and Natalie’s Big Town Showdown invites listeners to represent their home town in a quickfire quiz. The questions, it has to be said, are not quite in the Mastermind class. I have long been debating whether to enter on behalf of Piccotts End. I’m pretty average at quizzes. A few years ago I went on The Weakest Link and progressed to Round 4. Stuart and Natalie’s BTS is in a slightly lower league with questions like ‘In the expression LMAO what does A stand for?’ Even I know the answer to that but I was stumped by the opening question of one of last week’s quizzes ‘What is the capital of Germany’. I just couldn’t think of the answer. Maybe I’ll spare Piccotts End’s embarrassment, and my own, and give BTS a miss.

Oh dear. To get one speeding fine this month is unfortunate, To get two is carelessness. I must plead guilty, thus blotting my copybook for the first time in many years. But I couldn’t help thinking that the number of mobile police cameras on the Redbourn Road out of Harpenden is out of proportion to the level of accidents on this stretch. It is not an accident blackspot but Hertfordshire police seem to favour this wealthy neighbourhood more than any other local roads. Seems like easy money to me.