Burgess Hill is all very well, but if you really want to have a good day, you need to head for Crowborough. I turned up there this morning with a couple of boxes of eye drops, and came home this afternoon with a laptop for Amelie...
And what's more, I didn't steal it from the hospital. I was actually browsing through the bargains at the Hospice in the Weald charity shop at lunchtime, when I came across a Vtech Slim Pad. It might sound like some kind of modern fitness aid, but it's actually a laptop for children. Amazon sell them for £89.97, which is loose change to the average resident of Crowborough, but fortunately for me, the retail magnates at the hospice shop had priced it slightly lower. Their sticker read "Unchecked: £4".
I took 'unchecked' to mean 'broken', but bearing in mind that Amelie spends half her life typing nonsense on my computer keyboard and running off with my mouse, I decided it was worth spending a few quid on a dummy laptop just to distract her. So I Weald and dealed in the Hospice, and carried it off for £4.
Having walked back to work, I then got considerably further than the ladies in the charity shop, by locating the 'on' button and pressing it. Not only does the laptop contain batteries, but it works perfectly. I haven't shown it to Amelie yet. I've been playing with it myself all evening. Frankly it's too good for her. I might sell it on Ebay and buy her something from the pound shop.