Coming out of Hannigan's Truss Boutique I bumped into Ken Barmy, the systems manager for Pardendale Libraries. Last time we spoke he was being a bit smug because they'd got their act in gear and advertised internally for maternity cover in what we would imagine to be indecent haste, even before the actual birth (in Helminthdale the child will have at least reached tertiary college before the job description was written).
"Have you got a new Town Librarian yet?" I ask.
"It's delayed. We had two internal candidates and they were both interviewed. One's a Town Librarian from elsewhere in the Borough looking for a change of scenery. They've worked for us for twenty years. The other's an Assistant Librarian who's worked for us for thirty years."
"Who's to say? The appointment's been put back for three weeks pending external references."