As I understand that Mallorca is going through its end of summer storm cycle at the moment, we here in most of the United Kingdom are enjoying that rather mystical period known generally as a brief ‘Indian Summer.’ Naturally, it will not last for long, but for four or five days we have blue sky’s and the temperature in the mid to late 20’s centigrade.
Unfortunately, this improvement in the weather almost immediately causes consternation in the local population as they go about their business, cheeks puffed out, not knowing whether to enjoy this late summer sun or moan about the heat. In truth, August wasn’t that bad, just a month of wall-to-wall light greyness tinged with the occasional burst of late afternoon sun. However, some things never change - for instance is it my imagination or did this improvement in the weather always turn-up just as all the kids went back to school after the long summer break even my childhood? Nevertheless, just like in Mallorca, September is a very popular month with the more senior members of society looking to go on holiday.
These so called ‘empty nesters’ always wait for the sprogs to disappear from either Mallorca or Cornwall at this time of year before they head for sun and sand. Indeed I know a B&B operator in Devon and he tells me that this month is the busiest of his year. Similarly, I have always been led to believe that in Mallorca and perhaps during pre-Covid times, bar owners and restaurateurs did their best business of the whole year. True I wonder - or, just an easy to understand Mallorcan myth?
Suits you Sir!
The fact that Marks & Spencer have now stopped selling traditional ‘business’ suits comes as no particular surprise to me. What with various Covid lockdowns and people working from home I guess that this would come as no particular surprise to anyone. Indeed, for many years now both in Mallorca and over here, scruffiness has taken over from be-suited respectability at every level of working life.
I have filled this column for many years now, with tales of Majorcan bank, post office, and local government pen-pushers being both unkempt and halitosis ridden disgraces. Now it appears that British office wallah’s can’t be bothered anymore to get suited and booted before turning up for work. I complained to my son about this grievous situation and he just laughed, claiming that to look smart at work was a mere frippery. Well, he never actually used those words, but you know what I mean!
How times have changed from the days in the 1980’s and 90’s when I prowled office blocks in my M&S suit. Then, it was only those engaged in ‘creative’ work who were excused the need to wear a suit - for the rest of us it was our ‘uniform’ only partly assuaged by the then fashion of wearing brightly coloured ties to offset the dull predictability of grey, black and blue workwear.
Also, is it my imagination or were those suits double-breasted with a baggy Zoot-suit resonance and with turn-ups on the trousers? Well, there you go. Anyway, back to the scruffy workers of today. I can remember work colleagues whispering behind their hands when I turned up for work one day without shaving. Nowadays, you’d be lucky to spot a workmate who’d actually combed his hair before turning up for work.
Mind you, I can’t get too carried away with all this, because I can’t actually remember the last time I wore a tie and the only time I have worn my very nice, and surprisingly expensive bright blue suit in more than five years, has been at a couple of weddings….and that’s it!