Ha ha! Hello!
The weather in Dorking is BRILLIANT at the moment and the ROI is that my brain feels GREAT! Woo-oo!
After a LOT of research, I decided to use a Greek Orthodox minister to perform the exorcism on my husband's portrait and the satanically damp towel. I couldn't find a Greek minister (short supply in Dorking = gap in the market) but DID track down a Turkish decorator (practically the same thing but more moustache).
Anyway, his theological AND interior design opinion was that the radiator needed to be bled (not as macabre as it sounds) and that a BAD mixture of creosote and cheap paint was causing Herman's portrait to rot and decay. Case closed!
So in many ways, everything is back to normal, except for the reek of brimstone which now permeates every room, intrudes on my dreams and fills my senses with terror like a foul mist.
That reminds me, I need to go to the butcher QUICKLY. His meat is WELL past it's prime at the best of times, but it gets a LOT worse in the afternoon which is BAD news for the dinner party I've planned for this weekend.
I still need to pick a theme for the party, so SOME suggestions are welcome, but not RUBBISH ones. Don't try and 'talk turkey' if you're a rank amateur. GREAT ideas for dinner party themes I've had in the past are:
Big Brother: Sellotape disposable cameras in every room and force everyone to drink cider. Ruined by Herman impersonating Craig and parading around the table with his shirt off.
Fancy dress: Great fun but ALWAYS ruined by Herman refusing to dress as anyone other than Bismarck.
Murder: Watch a video of Morse. Frequently ruined by Herman asking "Is this the one where Lewis is sick in a passage?". This makes him an IDIOT because we only have one episode on tape so we ALWAYS watch that one. Carol dressed up as Miss Marple once, which was confusing for EVERYONE. I didn't know where to look.
Harry Potter: whatever a guest wants to eat 'magically' appears on the table. The reality was I pretended to be a fortune-telling waitress, then ran into the kitchen and made whatever people wanted. Derek's diabetes took a 'hammering' that night, for obvious reasons. His eyes swelled to DISGUSTING proportions after I gave him a profiterole tower.
There was also definite friction when EVERYONE turned up with a lightning blot scar biro'd on their forehead. We couldn't ALL be Harry Potter, so 99% of guests had to wash this off which RUINED the hand towel in the downstairs cloakroom. Also most wands were lost or broken and everyone left unhappy.
I had a Garfield party in the 80s once. Badly thought out and painful to think about now. NOT everyone likes lasagne.
Anyway, my favourite theme at the moment is either 'Christmas' (obvious) or 'Internet' (I have NO idea how this would work). Herman wants a 'Panthers and Gazelles' theme, but that's his answer to everything at the moment.