Top tip: Remember to take your finger off the button when you want to stop screwing!

Use a drill

Power tools are scary. I live in fear that one day I will be required to put up a shelf and it will end with me losing control and making a big hole or screwing myself to the wall. So, imagine my horror when my internet-purchased Adirondack chairs arrived as FLATPACK. There were bags of SCREWS and other metal THINGS, and instructions and DIAGRAMS of a DRILL None of my usual odd job men were available and so I decided to HAVE A GO. I borrowed a drill from John Up the Road (not his real name), and without even a health and safety demo, got stuck in. OK, it took me all day but crucially, there were NO INJURIES and no left-over screws. And amazingly, when given a test drive by a succession of friends (of the ‘big old unit’ variety), there have been no fallings apart or splintered arses. I feel positively Amazonian! Having said that, I don’t want to drill again – it’s really quite exhausting.

Paddle-board or should I say paddle BORED

God, the world has gone paddle-board crazy. You couldn’t enjoy a leisurely swim off Brighton beach this summer without some smug berk in a wetsuit and wraparound shades slicing across your path and smacking you around the head with a paddle. Anyway, long story short, I’ve had a go, and can report, once you’ve learnt how to gird your quads, switch on your buttocks and, most importantly, not look down, there’s really nothing to it. In fact, it’s dreary. I had a short lesson on an ox-bow lake near Eastbourne. I fell in, twice: the first time I went under and got stuck in a foot of putrid mud and weeds. Half an hour later, I was in the throes of executing a tricksy three point turn when one of my fellow boarders whooshed alongside and asked me a question about home-cooked chips. It was all too much. I opened my mouth to say ‘the secret is in the dripping’ and the next thing I knew, I’d gone overboard, swallowing a mouthful of brackish water. At this point I called it a day, handed back my board, pulled the weeds out of my gusset and went to the pub.