The infamous “Croydon facelift!”

I have started a running list titled “Knock-on effects” and “Silver linings” during the current crisis. One subject which straddled both was “Burglaries”- the current lockdown meaning people are at home more, which deters thieves. How wrong I was! Social media is reporting that thieves are more likely to get away with thieving right now, since the police are being deployed to round up errant walkers ignoring the social boundaries, patrol crowded parks and beaches, and question people out and about in their cars for no apparent reason.

On our lunchtime walk today, we spotted a police car pulling another car over, and the policeman asking the two (young male) inhabitants where they were going. They looked decidedly shifty. We didn’t hear their answer, but I’d put money on them not being related.

Perhaps the policeman should also have questioned the man standing in front of me in the Tesco queue (we went in for eggs and bread, if you really need to know. And tomatoes, as it turned out. Oh yes, and shampoo. All very necessary). Although he was wearing some sort of mask, he was clearly unshaven beneath it, and wearing a highly dubious-looking pair of stained trousers. I mean, come on! It’s one thing to wear skanky old clothes, or your pjs, or whatever around the house if you don’t intend going out (we heard of one neighbour who just wore his underpants all day, on one of the really warm days we’ve had recently. Really pleased to have missed that), but quite another to know you are going out and “bumping” into people, wearing awful old clothes that should never see the light of day. Someone else told me she only knows what day of the week it is by which clothes she is wearing on that day. Sounds a tad too complicated for me, but, you know; whatever gets you through.

There was quite a bit of confusion at the tills, with people not knowing where the end of the queue was, then ignoring the arrows on the floor, walking back round the wrong way to reach it. One woman asked me if it was the same queue for the self-service tills as well. I told I her I didn’t have a clue. The stores are all trying to do their best, but they are dealing with some very bewildered people out there – myself included.

On the knock-on effects front, I was idly wondering how all the “Surrey Blondes” are faring at the moment. This is the polite term myself and the OH have given to a certain type of woman very much prevalent in our neck of the woods: thin, tanned, made-up to the nines and exuding a certain type of tough glamour; they inhabit large, shiny houses, full of hard, shiny surfaces, drive their eye-wateringly expensive sports cars from beauty parlour to gym to hairdresser to lunching with the girls, and back home, exhausted, the poor darlings, to start all over again the next day. (I heard a story, once, of a woman who inhabited such a house. There was absolutely nothing in her kitchen, on any surface, to indicate that anyone actually lived there, let alone used it. When she invited anyone round for coffee, the housekeeper was summoned to visit the nearest café for takeaway drinks.) Just exactly how are they supposed to maintain those brittle good looks without their regular battalion of supporters? We may well be seeing a lot more of the infamous “Croydon facelift” ponytails around very soon. Excuse me a moment, would you? I’m sure I spotted an old rubber band in our kitchen drawer the other day…

Author: Hampton Caught

The rants and ramblings of an ex Deputy Fiction Editor of Woman's Weekly magazine.

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