Pouring water into a kettle should be a one handed exercise; our Port Alfred kettle needs two. One to hold the lid up – if you don’t, it falls down and the other hand pours the water onto the lid, the kitchen shelf, into open cupboards and the floor. Pointless and irritating.

I don’t own a dressing gown so Quentin lets me borrow his on very cold mornings. He’s very magnanimous. I wrap it around me twice this morning while I make my way in vague consciousness to the kitchen down our very long passage. When I remember why I’m there, I lift the lid of the kettle with the left hand and start pouring with the right. Seconds later, I become aware of an icy wetness in my left slipper and notice that the water level in the kettle hasn’t changed. I have poured the water down the dressing gown sleeve – gravity has done the rest. I must buy my own dressing gown.