I'm looking for a floor lamp that I can direct downwards on to my book when I'm reclining on the sofa. I had one, but after years of shining a light on dark stories, it blew its last bulb and has gone to its final resting place. The trouble is I don't want a cheap one, but can't afford an expensive one. I did find one I really liked, but it was £185, which is a bit out of my league. OK, completely out of my league.
Today, I decided I'd had enough of squinting in the gloom and persuaded Mr T to accompany me to B&Q to see what was on offer there. They had one that we decided would do, at a pinch. The next challenge was finding the right light bulb. Why can't they just give you one with the lamp?
We made a note of the spec of the bulb from the label attached to the lamp and went to the next aisle to locate an E14 screw fitting max 28W thingy. Inevitably there were hundreds of bulbs to choose from, but none fitting our criteria. We were forced to seek out a member of staff for guidance; let's call her Doris.
However, before surrendering to her tender mercies, we did what seemed perfectly sensible to us: we removed the bulb from the display lamp and took it with us for ease of comparison. When Doris discovered what we'd done, she fair near fainted away on the spot. Oh the horror! Did we have no respect for Health And Safety? One step away from reaching for the sal volatile, we calmed her down and she was able to find us what we sought. We bought the lamp and went home.
Forty minutes later we were back in the shop, returning the damn thing. The three screws needed to hold together the segments of the upright were missing. We could have resolved this; Mr T has an array of boxes and tins filled with fixings for just such occasions. However, the actual light fitting - the cone containing the bulb - just kept flopping down, such that if I wanted to be illuminated by it I would have to sit on the floor.
As the shadows draw in this evening, you will find me in a easy chair curled up with Lionel Shriver. I shall be wearing a head torch.