One of our friends is a detective. Well actually, two of them are, but that's an accident of geography, not habit. One day we ran into him and he turned to me with an evil grin and said, "Who were you kissing in town last Wednesday?"
Apparently they had been conducting some sort of street surveillance operation from the upstairs floor of a shop. As he watched the screen I appeared, accosted a woman, and gave her a hug and a kiss. "I know that man," he told his colleagues, and they watched on with interest.
The embarrassing thing was that, while I could remember running into someone, I couldn't for the life of me remember who. This didn't seem very plausible at the time. In fact it still doesn't. The Social Secretary started giving me funny looks and finding reasons to come shopping with me. So if by any chance you can remember being kissed by me in Earl Street on a Wednesday, would you very much mind contacting her?
It just shows the opportunity to misbehave (not that I was, you understand) is dwindling. It was bad enough in Essex in the 1960's. The Rodings (always pronounced 'Roothings') being terribly flat, I had to cycle miles to find a tree behind which I could drag on a discreet Consulate with a reasonable chance of not being spotted. Consulate of course, in the belief that the menthol would disguise the smell of tobacco (the innocence of youth; I also believed that we could end war and that I would become rich).
Because teenage drivers who should be wearing green Ps keep bumping into us in the lanes, my latest toy is a tiny camera which sits on the dashboard and continuously records the view ahead onto an SD memory card. The whole thing cost £25 from Hong Kong, which is less than the card alone would cost here. And it might just save me shed-loads in lost no-claims bonuses. Not to mention proving that the traffic light really did change too late to stop. Or that the police patrol car did indeed make an illegal U-turn on the dual carriageway.
The other fun thing about the recorder is that I can say things like, "You know when you drove down to the stables last Wednesday? Why did you stop under the bridge for several minutes, then turn round and park outside 22, Focaccia Avenue?"
Not that I would.