Now, I’m the first to admit, my kitchen could do with some sprucing up. The trouble is this: I like a super-glossy surface. I really love that sort of worktop that looks like, if someone decided to heave themselves up, to sit on the sheen, they’d slide right the way down the length of the kitchen and go flying through the window.

My kitchen surfaces were plastic wood veneer, now painted in black with sparkly bits.


But what I’d really like is that glossy coat that looks like its had four or five layers of varnish slathered over the top. But not here. It wouldn’t fit here.

I live in a bungalow. The sort of place that is, occasionally and affectionately referred to as a cottage. Realistically, I think it would only estate agents who would call it a cottage, in order to increase the house value and bump up the commission.

The house is firmly rooted in the countryside. We have trees. Big ones. And there’s a stream. Horses clippety-clop along the side of the road in the early morning. Birds sing at all hours of the day and night. There’s an open fire in the sitting room. There used to be beams across the ceiling, but they were only for effect – and looked too thin to support so much as a string of paperclips, largely because they were totally surface and held no weight.

I lost the crazy-paving fireplace surround because it was hideous but I can live with the woodchip wallpaper.

I could have coffee-table-books that never make it off the coffee table. It’s that kind of place. Country cottage. An Aga would not be out of place. It is a house of character.

And character cannot bear the sharp, crisp lines of a counter-top that threatens to hurl people from the building. Maybe in the next house…

But moving will wait for another day, when I’m not in the midst of a sale on Book One, ‘Sex, Death & Canapés’ – entirely free. It’s still there. Go and find it. I can wait.