When I was a little girl I used to love it when my dad took me to car boot sales. We’d spend hours perusing the various wares on sale, haggling over items until I felt satisfied I’d got a good deal. My favourite items were china cats, which I sought out with ferocious enthusiasm. I rarely left empty-handed, and over the years amassed a large collection of paraphernalia.

As the years wore on my china cat obsession abated, but I sated my continued passion for bric-a-brac by watching with interest programmes such as The Antiques Roadshow, Bargain Hunt and Cash in the Attic. The idea of finding something old lurking in the corner of an attic, dusting it off and finding out it’s actually worth a fortune is almost fairytale-like. Even if it’s not worth a lot of money, there’s something so appealing about restoring old antiques to their former glory.

This rationale may also explain my love of home improvement programmes. I’ve always liked the idea of buying a ramshackle old building somewhere in the country and lovingly renovating it into a gorgeous home. I suppose you could call me a bit of a romantic in that respect, but hopefully one day someone will indulge this girlish dream of mine and help to make it a reality…

…Borobadur in Indonesia was a rather impressive example.

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