The news tells us that unemployment has fallen by 50,000. I don't see this as a green shoot of recovery but I am hoping. What can I do to help? I'm not working although I probably could, but I have a private pension so I am more likely to do voluntary stuff these days. I remember in the late 60's there was a big campaign to `Buy British`. One could argue that, these days, our industrial clout is not even a shadow of its former mighty self and so buying British is easier said than done, but one has to try.
But when we do find gems in our midst we should shout about it. We have a great boot and shoe business in North Yorkshire. Their products are sold all over the world. I have read journals of bikers who have ridden the Americas, Africa and all points south and those who shod themselves in these boots always said they made the best choice and wouldn't ride in anything else. The much studied "Ride" magazine's products test section always puts one of their products in the top 3.
They also make walking, mountaineering and other `outdoor` boots, some of which are first choice for military, including elite special forces.
I rolled into their factory/showroom in Richmond on Monday. We were en route home from a few days in the Lake District. They measured me up, noted my dimensions on a card, which they would store on a database, and we were on our way in no time. They didn't have my size in stock but sent me an email to say they would be making my boots soon and that they would be delivered in about 3 weeks. They are less expensive than some boots whose longevity and resistance to water has been deemed `questionable` in tests. A riding pal has them and should be a salesman he loves them so much.
The downside? It occurred to me that they are so well made and the aftercare service of repairing and re-soling is so good, they may be the last boots I buy. Talk about a mortality check :0 mind you, I soon got over that as I pranced around the kitchen listening to a bit of "Saxon" on Planet Rock - until my reading glasses fell into my porridge, golden syrup and blueberries, duh.