UNDER THE COUNTER

We really can't cope with it - this heat. If we were Italian we'd be cursing to work on our Vespas, in our little Max Mara linen suits and our Web shades, and he'd be cool. In Britain, people just seem to sweat - certainly the ones I've been pressed up against in the tube do. I stood next to one corpulent woman who was wearing black 70 denier tights and a dark suit - it was eighty in the shade - what was she thinking of? Everywhere you go there is an all-pervading smell of BO. I need air.

I considered my options - Iceland, Alaska, where people are fresh and there is air for the breathing. But this doesn't kind of fit in with my present plans. So I trawled around for ideas of how I could ameliorate my situation, while still remanding on British soil - it wasn't easy. What I found most appealing was getting the hell out of London. And then I saw it: place of my dreams. This was, I have to admit, in the property section of Country Life, but I only bought it because the cover boy was someone I knew, pictured wearing a kilt, and captioned "Featuring the Best Legs in Scotland". So there it was, the des res. You can bet your bottom Scottish pound that you'd get sea breezes here (especially if you were wearing a kilt): the 27-acre Taynish Island, in Loch Sween on the West Coast of Scotland, is a snip at pounds 50,000, and includes six acres on the mainland and a bath-house said to have been used by Lillie Langtry. How romantic can you get? And it is only a few miles up the water from the island where I was born. I've got to have it. The only catch, as I suppose is "reflected in the price", is that there is no house on the island, but there are the remains of what is possibly a 9th century monk's cell. I'll camp - it will be cooler anyway.

Plan B. If I don't manage to become a castaway, I've got to make living in London this summer a bit more bearable. So, I'm going to go topless. And who am I going to take my top off with? ... The Classic Car Club. For a one-off joining fee of pounds 500, and an annual subscription of pounds 1,500, you are given 750 points, which you then redeem to drive any of their 45 classic cars. If you choose carefully, you should get about 40 days driving a year. (The desirability of the car and the time of year dictates how many points you use.) There is a wonderful menu to choose from, with plenty of convertibles to meet my criteria: 1955 Ford Thunerbird; 1964 Austin Healey; 1967 Alfa 1750 Duetto; 1969 Mercedes 280 SL. But my absolute favourite - I have always wanted one of these - is an immaculate 1967 Karmann Ghia. So today, if you see a blonde woman in Grace Kelly headscarf, and Jackie "O" specs, speeding down towards the coast in a green Karmann Ghia, hamper in the back, a Bond-sesque hunk by her side, and Quincy Jones's "Soul Bossa Nava" playing on the stereo, well, I like to think it would be me.

OK, I realise this is all a bit pricey, so I have devised a budget alternative for cooling in the capital, which I think you'll find is just as effective. Take one kids' paddling pool, a bottle of Campari (do not pour in pool), four bags of ice, and some stimulating company, then get in and melt.

Cool it:

Taynish Island, offers over pounds 50,000, from Strutt & Parker, Edinburgh (0131 226 2500).

The Classic Car Club, 4-12 Britannia Street, London WC1, 0171-713 7313.

Kids' paddling pool, pounds 14.99, from Woolworth's.

5lb bag of ice, pounds 1.79; 75cl bottle of Campari, pounds 10.85, from Oddbins.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
News
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Put the phone down on the coldcallers who see pension liberation as an opportunity to liberate your pension from you

Pension freedoms: How to deal with cold calls from scammers

Sean O'Grady offers advice on keeping your money safe
Switching to a better bank account is much easier than it used to be

More people are switching current accounts – but what do the figures mean?

Experts disagree about the 7% increase over the past year

The chance of getting what appears to be free money can be hugely attractive, especially to first-time buyers who can be fooled into thinking it’s extra cash to buy the essential new items they need for their dream home.

Beware the boom in cashback mortgage deals

Too many mortgages are being sold with misleading gimmicks

The firm’s revenues slumped by a third to £217 million in a disastrous 2014

Wonga results could get even worse this year, chief admits

The firm’s revenues slumped by a third to £217 million in 2014

The cost of a buildings policy has dropped by 10.1 per cent over the year, with the cost of a contents policy falling by 8.2 per cent

Simon Read: Mild winter cuts the cost of home insurance

The average quote for a buildings and contents policy has fallen by 3.6 per cent

Don't count your retirement money yet: employers will stop receiving a pension rebate next year and their staff may lose out

Defined-benefit pension schemes: Rebate change in 2016 may leave you out of pocket

Employees in defined-benefit schemes are held up as the lucky ones, but the state pension scheme will be overhauled in April 2016
Labour will raise the national minimum wage to more than £8 an hour by October 2019 (EPA)

Barclays new Blue Rewards hands cash to customers. What’s the catch?

Joining Barclays Blue Rewards costs £3 a month but then lets customers in for handouts of up to £15 a month

New research reveals that despite the recovering economy, four out of five low-income households have seen no sign of their financial situation improving

Hard-up families could be eligible for financial help

A charity is urging anyone struggling financially to see if they could get help from the state

When is the best time to buy foreign currency?

Video: With an election looming, a hung parliament could hit sterling

General Election 2015: Vote for the party that will boost your finances

Experts warn that the general election is unlikely to lead to stable markets. Simon Read talks to two investment managers who are advising caution

Make the most of your money in 2015-16: The end of the tax year is the beginning of the next...

The new tax year brings with it a raft of new rules and regulations

General Election 2015: Will pension reform be a major factor?

Video: Tom McPhail, head of pensions at Hargreaves Lansdown, says May's outcome could alter your pension

General election 2015: David Cameron's promise brings uncertainty to investors

Video: Simon Read talks to Fidelity's Tom Stevenson

  • 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

    Ashdown Group: Treasury Assistant - Accounts Assistant - London, Old Street

    £24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

    Ashdown Group: Business Analyst - Financial Services - City, London

    £50000 - £55000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Business Analyst - Financial Service...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

    £18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: At SThree, we like to be differe...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

    £20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is the o...

    Day In a Page

    General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

    Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

    The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
    Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

    Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

    Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
    Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

    Marginal Streets project documents voters

    Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
    Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

    The real-life kingdom of Westeros

    Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
    How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

    How to survive a Twitter mauling

    Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
    Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

    At dawn, the young remember the young

    A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

    Follow the money as never before

    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

    Samuel West interview

    The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
    General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
    Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

    Confessions of a former PR man

    The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

    Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

    Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
    London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

    The mother of all goodbyes

    Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
    Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

    Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

    The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
    Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

    Michael Calvin's Last Word

    Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions