The household theme of the summer is plumbers and slugs; the fifth plumber is on his second day, wrestling with a boiler that has invented a problem that even the manufacturers are totally stymied by.
Not being a heating engineer, the only way I can describe it is 'glugging'.
'It shouldn't do that', said the plumber. 'No, no', I agreed, rubbing my chin with my hand knowledgeably, a pencil tucked empathetically behind my ear.
So he's coming back, yet again, this afternoon.
And the other... oh, I can hardly bear to write the word! Where do they come from? Like a new type of cuisine, or perhaps the Australian Cane Toad phenomenon or Japanese Knotweed, enormous orange slugs the size of Porkinson Bangers are expiring all over the garden (for verily, I am a slug-pelleter).
They are HIDEOUS and they are TERRIFYING: too huge for birds and toads (although one disappeared the other day: have I inadvertently slug-pelleted the toad?)
I have never seen the like before. The first lot even had green rims. Do you think they could be edible? Could I roll them in flour and tempura batter and serve them up to my guests as a new delicacy, Deep-Fried Pacific Rim Tangerine Garden Boys?