I have been looking at portable gas heaters today. As my woodburning stove dream is on hold pending a mythical lotto win, (forget the actual price of the stove - it is the chimney thingy and the labour which is astronomical) I decided that one of those gas heaters, where I can get refills for the gas bottles, may work better. I absolutely will not run the risk of another mega gas bill for the central heating in January. Here in the UK, our utility bills - gas and electricity, come quarterly. Last January I nearly had an attack of the vapours when it arrived.
My friend in NZ has these at her home, and they work brilliantly, so I am looking at what is around. This is particularly apt today as it is grey, chilly and damp, and it is the dampness which is the bit which gets to the bones. My bones in particular. My bones are not partial to cold and damp. AND I can move it around to where it is needed, which would be great.
In Switzerland, my sister buys her oil for her heating and hot water once a year. She pays for it, and then there are no unknown costs involved later to cause panic attacks. It is very reassuring to go and look at full tanks, and know you will be warm. Here we are at the mercy of the gas companies. Prices change all the time, and always seem to be spiralling upwards, and never down. When the oil price drops, nothing drops here. The price of petrol for our cars is outrageous. I just paid £1.08 a litre this morning. They have plenty of excuses - oh it is the government tax, oh, we need to improve pipe lines, oh oh oh. Sigh. And the British consumer is actually very docile. I am not of the docile variety. You may have noticed this.
So I am looking at gas heaters. Hah! They will then want to come and check and see if there is something wrong with my meter if it is stunningly low in January, I bet. I will show them my bottles of gas lined up instead, and yes, I know this is probably an expensive way of heating my house, but I will be controlling what I spend or use. I can simply switch it off and wear more clothes if I need to.
Our economy was widely reported to be about to come out of recession last week. The celebrations had begun. Until Friday, that is. That was when the actual figures came out saying that we were still in recession, with a 0.4% further shrinkage of the economy. The worst figures since figures began. Now it appears the economists got it horribly wrong, are possibly totally incompetent or that we are way worse off than the rest of the world. France and Germany came out of recession months ago. Us??? Hahahahhaha. America is doing better too. The UK is still in the quagmire. Unemployment is spiralling too. Gloom, doom and all.
I need chocolate.