Am I the last person in Edinburgh not to sign up for Ringgo? Obviously if you think I just misspelled the name of the drummer in The Beatles then I am not alone in confusing the cashless parking charge app with Mr Starr.
Anyway, the time has come for things to change. In days of yore I would pick up parking tickets like fluff from a mohair jumper. I never seemed to be able to time my shopping trips, and whenever I nipped in to pick a child up from a play date, there would be some fiendish traffic warden lurking just outside my field of vision.
However, in the past year or so I have made a concerted effort to avoid them like the plague. If I can walk, then it’s Shanks’s pony for me and I keep the ashtray full of change so I can pump it into the nearest meter when necessary.
Of course, there are problems with the latter in that the coins seem to somehow evaporate. Needless to say this has become more of a problem since my older children started to drive. It’s a bit like that tin in the kitchen with money for bus fares – right now there is about 78 pence in one penny coins and a few euros. However, it isn’t just them – when I go to the supermarket I need a £1 coin for the trolley and as often as not that is replaced in my purse rather than the meter fund.
So when I returned from a dog walk around Inverleith earlier this week to find a red-and-white envelope on my screen I was about as pleased as a turkey in the middle of December.
As I wrote out that cheque for £30 my mind wandered as to what else I could have used the money on. It amounts to a lunchtime deal for me and a friend or a pair of jeans from M&S, or it could have bought quite a lot of food in Lidl and a lot less in Waitrose.
So Ringgo here I come – and if you are reading this Mr Starr, don’t worry it ain’t you I am after.