SOMETIMES, I feel like chucking it all in, selling the house and travelling around the world till I die. Problem is I don’t like the world.

I don’t like travelling either. For me, it is better to arrive than to travel. To be somewhere else: that’s always my aim. To get away. But not to spend time getting there. Basically, I’d like to be teleported or put in suspended animation for the journey.

Who could like sitting for hours on a train, plane or bus? To the man of action, it is purgatory.

Of course, one could always drive oneself which, while still sedentary, at least means you can stop where you want and go through some dance routines at the side of the road.

Friends have frequently suggested to me that I should live in a camper van, on the basis that I never belong anywhere and find it hard to settle down. Basically, they want me to be a tramp with wheels.

It’s not something I’d do abroad where, being foreign, people drive on the wrong side of the road and toot their horns willy-nilly.

But, conceivably, it could be done in Scotland, at least outwith virus lockdowns. It could be a fine way of life, every day an adventure, moving on when familiarity breeds contempt; new horizons; new landscapes; no ties to local communities with their ritual sacrifices and cannibalism.

The open road: what’s not to like? Well, cyclists obviously. And other motorists. But, apart from that, the world, or Scotland at least, would be my bivalve mollusc.

However, ever keen to micturate on my own parade, another problem is that I don’t like driving. Well, I kinda like it. I’m courteous. I don’t tailgate. I let other vehicles join the traffic. Hell, I even give cyclists a wide berth, and not just because of the smell.

But I have poor spatial awareness, cannot reverse in a straight line, and am prone to daydreaming, often just snapping out of it as my car starts veering towards a swamp.

One must consider also the stigma of having a camper van. I’m over-sensitive, always worrying about what other people think. But that doesn’t affect you Earthlings.

This week, it was reported that, with staycations popular, camper vans and caravans are selling out and not even available to rent.

I’ve noticed that camper vans often have bikes on the back, thus doubling the popular impression that the owners don’t care about other people. Most of them wear shorts, too. By and large, a powerful case is building up for deeming them disgraceful.

Yet, still, I admire their independence. I know that B&B owners hate them and say they put nothing into the local economy. I’m guessing that, relatively speaking, they put in less. But they still put in something.

At any rate, when I started giving this open road plan or fantasy some thought, I decided I’d get something inconspicuous that didn’t look like a camper van and do it up. You can find YouTube videos about how to do this.

Remember, though: I’m talking about a whole new way of life, not just a holiday. What about all my stuff? If keeping it, I’d have to drag a trailer the size of a double-decker bus behind me.

Otherwise, I’d have to ditch my possessions, keeping in storage only the few I’d choose if “death-cleaning” before going into care or a tiny flat: one small bookcase of treasured volumes (The Lord of the Rings, books about The Lord of the Rings, biographies of Tolkien); my favourite music (early Genesis, Zappa, Beefheart, Gong, K. Bush, J. Tull, Aurora, Ravel, Debussy) and films (School for Scoundrels, The Happiest Days of Your Life, the first St Trinian’s, Fanny and Alexander).

To be honest, as so often happens in the course of writing articles, I have unfortunately been forced to think things through (reader’s voice: “I must have missed that bit”) and, consequently, have gone off this whole idea.

Instead, I shall wait patiently for the development of teleportation where, instead of having to get up and go, you just stand still and find that you have gone. Excellent. Byee!

Spaced oot

ANOTHER place I’d like to go is ooter space. But at 200k for a seat on a Virgin spaceship, I think ma tea’s oot there.

You might not get any peace and quiet there anyway. This week, the Britonian Government warned that Russia and China were filling the place up with offensive weapons (as opposed to pleasant weapons).

Britain, and other nice, wholesome countries were now desperately trying to catch up, for defensive purposes, with what Defence Secretary Ben Wallace called “our adversaries”.

He’s quite right, of course. What is it with the Russians and Chinese? If there’s anything ghastly going on in the world, it’s always these two popping up to support it.

One imagines, after the famous Mitchell and Webb comedy sketch, Putin saying to Xi Jingping: “Are we the baddies?” Yep, mate, you are.

Incidentally, I met Ben Wallace once at the Hoose o’Commons, where he accused me of calling him “pudding face” in a parliamentary sketch. The allegation was, sadly, correct. So let’s hope he gives the Russians and Chinese their just desserts.

Time for a ginger Bond

ANTI-GINGER bias makes me see red. It seems a recent thing. When I was growing up, admittedly in Scotland where the hue is common, we might call people “ginge” or “carrot-top”, but there was never malice or contempt behind it.

Red-haired girls are as pretty as any other, and ginger men no less mental than other Scots males. The whole thing is baffling and now seems a widespread, even worldwide, phenomenon.

Perhaps it’s like me ranting on about baldies: just a joke because, after a life of ideological piety, I feel the need to have an irrational prejudice.

This week, actor Charles Dance revealed he’d turned down the role of James Bond because he was a redhead, saying: “You can’t have a ginger Bond.”

Why not? Didn’t Bond, like his author Ian Fleming, have Scottish parentage? True, he has black hair in the books but it’s hardly an important detail in an action film.

Last week, Simply Red singer Mick Hucknall said he’d suffered fanti-ginger prejudice throughout his career and likened it to racism. Hmm, maybe. Time for a ginger James Bond. I vote Ed Sheeran or Frankie Boyle (with beard).

Love my mask

I WAS impressed to read about Lewis crofter Donald Macsween cutting his own hair during the lockdown.

Regular readers and other inebriates know that I’ve cut my own hair for years, saving me both money and dignity. However, Donald, who features in BBC Alba’s An Lot – The Croft, cut his with sheep shears.

Decent job he made of it too. I like to think that my own bonce passes muster among the masses but was recently reminded that this isn’t always the case.

In the fashionable, sophisticated metropolis of Inverness, I was tittered at twice, both times by young ladies. Perhaps they were professional hairdressers. Earlier that morning, I’d just hacked a couple of stray bits off with nail scissors, but there were stubby remnants sticking up.

However, I tell you something I have enjoyed recently: wearing a mask. No kidding, women have been looking at me and even being nice, which hasn’t happened for years or, indeed, ever.

It must be because they can’t see my bulbous beak, thin lips, scraggy beard and rubicund complexion. Indeed, with a mask and a balaclava, I could be on to something here.

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