Alice-Azania Jarvis: 'It's summer – no heating bills, thanks goodness'

In The Red

Okay, I should probably warn you: for the extent of this column there's going to be an elephant in the room. Or, rather, a rhino. Because I am not going to talk about the (whisper it) London Marathon. Nor am I going to talk about my fund-raising. Because the Big Day (aka the marathon, for which I have spend the past six months fund-raising) is tomorrow and, frankly, I'm too nervous to be reminded of it. Also, I've hurt my knee so it's all a bit of a sore point, so to speak.

Instead, I'm going to talk about the weather. Yes, that's right, the weather. And no, not in the sense of "Oh my gosh, isn't it hot? I'm not sure I can run in this weather." As in, "It's summer! Wahey! No more heating bills. Thank goodness. And much, much lower electricity. And days spent in the park instead of sitting in some overpriced café/cinema/restaurant." Summer, as well as being generally better for one's mental state, is infinitely superior to its colder cousin when it comes to saving money.

The one exception to this, of course, is the Summer Holiday. These rarely come cheap – as I learned to my (or my bank balance's) detriment last year when I attempted, folly of follies, a staycation. How naïve I was! Cornwall, it turned out, was lovely. But also, very, very expensive. Accommodation was considerably dearer than it would be abroad, and the cost of driving down made easyJet look like Primark. True, I didn't need to go away at all, but I'd saved up and thought my funds would go further. By day five, my boyfriend had reached the end of his overdraft and by day seven, I was getting there.

This year, however, I'm planning something else entirely: a week on a farm in Spain. It's ideal. Firstly, the nearest town is quite a way away – meaning that if I want to go and spend money, I'll have to make an effort. Also, Spain being the UK's favourite destination, the flights are numerous and cheap. I've managed to find a cottage to rent which, when divided between two people, works out at little more than a hostel but still has its own swimming pool.

It should be a delightful, well-earned break after ... well, I said I'm not going to mention it so I won't. Except to say this: if anyone fancies donating lastminute cash to Save The Rhino, you can do so at www.justgiving.com/alicerunsthemarathon. I'll let you know the outcome next weekend. Wish me luck!

a.jarvis@independent.co.uk

Independent Partners; Do you need financial advice on your investments, pension or insurance? Book a free consultation with an independent Financial Adviser at VouchedFor.co.uk

News
people Ex-wife of John Lennon has died at her home in Spain
Sport
Chelsea
football
Arts and Entertainment
Buttoned up: Ryan Reynolds with Helen Mirren in ‘Woman in Gold’
filmFor every box-office smash in his Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. Now he says it's time for a reboot
News
people
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    SThree: Graduate Recruitment Resourcer

    £20000 per annum + commission: SThree: Sthree have an exciting opportunity for...

    Recruitment Genius: Telesales Executive - OTE £32,000+

    £18000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Telesales Executive is requir...

    Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - B2B, Corporate - City, London

    £45000 - £50000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

    Neil Pavier: Commercial Analyst

    £50,000 - £55,000: Neil Pavier: Are you a professionally qualified commercial ...

    Day In a Page

    War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

    War with Isis

    Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria
    Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

    A spring in your step?

    Scientists develop mechanical leg brace to help take a load off
    Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

    Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock

    Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
    Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold

    Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

    For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
    Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising

    Stars safeguard against morbid advertising

    As film-makers and advertisers make increasing posthumous use of celebrities' images, some stars are finding new ways of ensuring that they rest in peace
    The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

    UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

    Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
    10 best compact cameras

    A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

    If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
    General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

    The masterminds behind the election

    How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
    Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

    Machine Gun America

    The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
    The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

    The ethics of pet food

    Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
    How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

    How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

    Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
    11 best bedside tables

    11 best bedside tables

    It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
    Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

    Italy vs England player ratings

    Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
    Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

    An underdog's tale of making the most of it

    Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
    Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

    Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

    Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police