It was a good job I’d already emptied the dogs I thought as I checked my watch for the umpteenth time. It was only five past one, the chimney sweep was due from one o’clock onwards.

I’d already vacuumed-up the considerable amount of dog hair that seemed to have accumulated in the corners of every room and just so that I didn’t get caught out, I’d had an early lunch.

I put the television on to discover Sean Connery, circa 1975, playing an Arab rebel leader with a heavy Scottish accent! I made a mental note that If I ever met a film producer I would suggest they remade The Wind and the Lion with a more suitable actor, although they should keep Jerry Goldsmith’s fabulous score.

I turned the telly off and looked at the dogs, they looked at me. Time was passing very slowly. I checked my watch again, it was only twenty past one. When was this chuffing chap coming?!

I toyed with the idea of creating a piece of toilet paper origami but instead I opened the lap top and Googled all my favourite, children’s television theme tunes, I even found Ragtime with Fred Harris and Maggie Henderson. My afternoon was beginning to take a distinctly 1970’s turn!

“It’s lovely out!” I told the dogs encouragingly as I held the back door open for them to exit. They stepped onto the decking willingly and looked very disappointed as I shut the door without joining them, so they trotted around to the front of the house where they sat and waited to be let in.

Back on Google I decided to try some more detective work. A half remembered children’s story involving a train trip to France, a crime and a guinea-pig in a net bag that saves the young heroine’s life. I couldn’t remember the title or the author but the book had been so well written that the images it created of a hot Summer in the French countryside had stayed with me. I typed children’s holiday, train, France, guinea-pig, net bag into the search bar and held my breath. Thankfully I didn’t have to hold it for long as there on the bottom of the second page was A Packet of Trouble by Margaret Bacon. On further investigation a copy of the book was found to be available to order online from the Library Service in Cornwall! By which time I’d forgotten that the chimney-sweep was coming and that the dogs were still outside!

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