Hammering it home!

What gets you out of bed in the morning? Caffeine withdrawal normally drags me downstairs, swiftly followed by the mortgage – yes, getting in front of my computer to earn some pennies is a good way to get Baggy from her bed.

But what about those autumn days of one’s life when work has been and gone and you can set your own schedule?

My parents are in that gang. Routine is something we all need and they find a certain TV programme is their hook in the mornings.

After breakfast in bed and the completion of a few domestic duties, they’re ready for their morning coffee and that means only one thing – Under the Hammer. To the uninitiated it’s a programme that follows successful bidders that have purchased houses and flats in need of some TLC. Cameras follow as the new owners work hard to create something habitable. By the end of the programme several projects have been completed – and that’s the secret of its success.

In Under the Hammer there’s no cliff-hangers, no ‘tune in next time’ – you get the full story and all before 11am.

Why do my parents enjoy it so? Well over the years they’ve undertaken one or two of these projects themselves. They know all about the dust, the lack of heating during winter and boiling water for a bath. Growing up I remember it well. But those memories, as John Boy Walton might say, are fond ones. Yes, it was cold and noisy but it was part of my childhood.

Watching the efforts of others from the comfort of their armchairs is something my parents deserve – I just wish they didn’t shout at me if I dared to phone a minute or two before it ended!