"You must not lick your carpet or roll naked on it for 14 days," says Mark.

It all started a couple of weeks ago. An almost invisible bite on my leg and two tiny black specks jumping on my pristine white desk.

"Creatures!" I cried.

Two hours later Bassy, the cat, resembles Prince Harry. Not the ginger bit but the rows of friendship bracelets.

She can hardly lift her neck for colourful collars and bells guaranteed to fend off a buffalo.

I have cleared the shelves in Waitrose of all sprays and I am hoovering and spraying for 12 hours a day.

There is no evidence of an infestation of anything but I have, fatally, googled.

Barely able to breathe but, convinced a flea will have more cunning than a Brexiteer persuading doubters that all is wonderful and going to be even better, I must leave no rug unturned.

Anyway, I am washing everything on a hot wash. Nothing fits any more and it's all becoming expensive.

I sidle into the Cotswold District Council offices. I appear to have arrived at that very moment that the whole county is there to make an enquiry.

To the lady behind the counter I whisper, "Pest control".

Over the cacophony of complainants she asks me to repeat, and the word 'flea' echoes loudly.

I suggest that part of my excessive council tax be used for a loudhailer as someone in Stow might not have heard.

Sitting in a private space with the lady who deals with the matter is a relief.

Let me be quite clear on one thing. The staff at Cotwold District Council are wonderful. Always friendly, incredibly patient, and they really know what they are doing.

I hand over money and await the contractor. I ask for an unmarked van, but there is no promise of this.

Never blame the staff, never shoot the messenger.

Later, Mark arrives. He is discreetly logo-ed.

By now I am a wreck, both emotionally and physically, reduced to wearing my third-best dressing gown as everything else is wet from spray and repeated boiling.

Mark is kindly and all thoughts of my mother, who had a first class degree in a sense of shame in such matters, vanish.

But I can't wait for the 14 days to be up and I can lick and roll naked on the carpet.

I'm buying British, but thinking global

There was a moment, last year around the time of the Brexit vote, that politics became a subject of everyday conversation. Now it wouldn’t be rude to speak about it over the dining table, just simply boring.

And that’s when things become dangerous. Ennui, that enemy of debate and action. 

Whatever my views on, for example, the Bathurst housing scheme for Cirencester, I admire the staunch opponents. Or at least those who behave in a civilised manner. 

I applaud their passion but also their perseverance. 

We can all feel deeply about something for five minutes, but to stick with it, especially when it’s not going your way, is another matter. 

In my ‘real’ working life, running a head-hunting business, I established that we are all, whatever we do, salesmen.

A salesman perseveres, but a great salesman knows when to walk away and move on. 

I was a ‘remainer’ about Brexit and at heart I still am. But ‘it’ is happening (albeit messily and off-stage and with all the style of a closing down sale in a cheap dress shop) and we all need to engage with it more than ever.

We cannot turn back time, but we can focus on the future. Time to stop the name-calling, which is childish and time-wasting. 

For myself, I am trying to buy British, supporting local goods and services when possible, but seeing myself as both English and global. 

There won’t be a going back so let’s seek out the benefits (there must be some) and work together. After all, isn’t that what the majority wanted?