Well, I’m afraid that you find me feeling altogether a bit grumpy today, and it’s not just the miserable weather we’ve had this week. I wish that I could say it was all down to my outrage at the pathetic so-called ‘fuel poverty action plan’ (fuel poverty no-action plan, more like!) unveiled by the government this week, which they claim will help people struggling to pay their energy bills, but that many poverty and age-related charities have criticised as next to useless. Four million people are thought to be suffering in fuel poverty while our MPs are clamouring for inflation-busting pay rises and grants so they no longer have to suffer the indignity of having their expense claims made public! The hypocrisy of it all makes my blood boil! And more price rises are predicted, so what will people do?
But frankly this isn’t really what’s at the root of my bad mood. I’m grumpy because the old frugal wallet has taken something of an unexpected and unwanted bashing this week. No less than two pets have been taken sick and I’ve had to splash out on vets appointments and treatments, which is hardly ideal. Dougal the cat has been up to his old tricks again of getting into punch-ups and got yet another abscess thanks to a bite from a sparring partner, which cost a tidy £60 to clean up. Luckily unlike last autumn when he had one before, it didn’t have to be lanced (eek…apologies for the gory details), which would have been closer to £200 – some small comfort I suppose. But I’m not sure whether I can claim anything back on the pet insurance policy I still hold for him – not that it would be much because of the excess – because he’s had the condition before.
And part of the recovery process has involved keeping him indoors all day and night, to avoid him meeting up with his fight club mates again and opening up the wound. This is proving to be a total nightmare as he is a confirmed outdoor cat who gets bored to death inside. I have barely slept over the past three nights because of the incessant howling, whinging and scratching at the door. All I can say is that I saw someone on our local Freecycle email is offering a cat’s Christmas dressing up outfit to give away, and another sleepless night and Dougal will soon find himself kitted out as Santa’s little helper in revenge…At least he hasn’t spurned the ground-up antibiotics in his food for once…
Poor Ellie the lizard was also feeling under the weather and was taken to the vets too, which while not very serious (worms…yuck) was another £59 – the downside to keeping exotic pets as vets tend to charge extra to impart their specialist reptile knowledge. Here’s wishing both poor chaps a speedy recovery.
Have a great weekend. xxx Piper
Are you struggling to pay your energy bills? What do you think the government and energy companies should do to help people finding it difficult to pay for heat and energy? Leave a comment and let me know.