Mrs Noah is fed up of just holding the hammer. It’s a plumbing hammer left behind by someone at her mother’s house who wasn’t even a plumber. So she tries to wallop the metal tent pegs but its slippery, brittle surface just becomes more gnarled than it already is and spits fragments of orange plastic all over the cream canvas. But it’s the only hammer they’ve got. Yes, they’ve got a doormat, ten towels, waterproof trousers and spare socks but no proper mallet. No wonder the person who wasn’t a plumber didn’t bother to take it with them. It’s rubbish. They should buy a new one. Mrs Noah would like to hurl the hammer into oblivion. It’s raining.
Mr Noah is fed up too. Mrs Noah has to be told everything. She was never a boy scout. He thinks she’s more worried about the bits of orange plastic coming off the hammer than getting the tent erected. And it’s raining. Mr Noah is also fed up because his feet are wet and he knows that Mrs Noah is very likely to start nagging him about his choice of shoes. Mr Noah’s shoes have a hole in them and they are the only pair he’s brought. It is also very likely that Mrs Noah will see this misfortune as an opportunity to go shopping.
Mrs Noah thinks that Mr Noah doesn’t like being on holiday very much. She thinks that he needs to go shopping. She calls it ‘going for a coffee’. He needs some new shoes, anyway. They’ll do that tomorrow if it’s still raining.
Mr Noah is thinking about the amount of stuff that has to be fitted into the tent once it’s up. Packing anxiety, his wife calls it. He had the same trouble with the car and she always has to say ‘I told you so’ after he’s spent hours rearranging the countless useless items she’s insisted on bringing. And just why do they have to have two of everything?