Invisible assets

A6KTGH / Money British Twenty Pound Notes

“Earlier on today apparently a woman rang the BBC and said she had heard a hurricane was on the way.” So began the most infamous weather bulletin in British history on the lunchtime news 30 years ago. “Well I can assure people watching,” smirked weather forecaster Michael Fish, “don’t worry, there isn’t.” (Joe Shute, The Telegraph)

He was wrong. It was the night of 15th/16th October 1987 and we lay in bed listening to the slates from our roof crashing to the ground. Our insurance company paid up for a repair but their surveyor made it clear that the general state of the roof was less than satisfactory. We bit the bullet and had the back of the house and outbuildings re-roofed. Adamant that I was not having new roof tiles on the front of a Victorian house, I asked for the best of the slates to be salvaged and re-fitted to the front, Wouldn’t you know it, this was more costly than using new tiles. The total expense was significant and necessitated increasing our mortgage but rather disappointingly, not one single person ever said, “What a wonderful roof you have; it looks amazing!”  If I’d spent a tiny fraction of the money on a new hairdo or dress, chances are that someone would have noticed and commented.

The reason for telling you this little tale is that I’ve recently experienced a similar situation. Not a roof, and several hundreds of pounds rather than thousands, but just as disappointingly no-one will make a positive comment about how fabulous my ‘new’ tooth looks. An porcelain ‘onlay’ is similar to a crown but the work involved, though lengthy, is less invasive and less of the original tooth structure is damaged.

I suppose that whilst one doesn’t make a point of checking out how the roof looks when visiting  a friend, neither does one peer into said friend’s mouth to check out their dental work. And just as I was able to sleep easier at night knowing that the roof was secure, so I can be glad that my poor damaged tooth will no longer irritate, but I’ve had far more pleasure out of spending a lot less money on my new hair colour this morning. I popped into Tesco afterwards and two people commented favourably. (Two tone highlights  with one just a shade darker blonde than usual, in case your wondering).



  1. Last year we had to replace our soffits and fascias – cost lots of money and no one noticed! Similarly, I had a dental implant quite recently. The tooth was at the very back of my mouth. No one can see it but I had it done for practical reasons, as I wasn’t able to bite on that side and my other teeth were being affected (simplified version!). If money was no object, I’d love braces but my sons, who both wore braces but have amazing teeth, assure me I wouldn’t be able to take the pain…


  2. How interesting Eloise (and I bet you look fab with the tooth done) but I am thinking that I must do something about my two front teeth which are beginning to be noticeably discoloured and there doesn’t seem to be anything that touches this. My Other Half has just completed many sessions at his dentist having implants and spent an absolute fortune but I’ll ask about these ‘overlays’. Actually you’ve spurred me on to ask – thanks so much!


    • They are actually called ‘onlays’ – my error! My front two teeth have veneers on which I think may be what you are after. They consist of a very thin layer of porcelain over the tooth whereas the onlay is more of a reconstruction of the tooth. Again – costly …….but you’re worth it!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. How bizarre! I had a refilling yesterday, during which the dentist spotted a crack in my tooth so guess what I’m having in January? Yup, an onlay at the cost of around £600😱😱 I feel your pain!


    • Oh dear, that is bizarre indeed! It was a bit achey having my mouth clamped open for quite a while but 4 days on – I’m delighted. I keep fighting but age is dictating that I am having to spend cash on my ‘falling apart’ bits!!


  4. In that respect you’ve had far more pleasure than me. I had my hair highlighted last week and not one person has commented! Maybe I should have got my roof re-tiled instead. X


    • Oh Jules – what a shame. I’ll bet you look lovely! No-one notices usually – it’s just that I’ve gone a little bit darker blonde this time.


  5. There must be some sort of theory, Eloise, which states that the most expensive the expenditure the less likely it is to be noticeable! In other words, if you can’t see it, or notice it, then it has cost a lot of money.
    Margaret P


  6. That’s very true – those investments aren’t noticed by anyone other than you, but they are so necessary, aren’t they? I think that’s why people went for gold teeth, etc., in the old days, so that the replacements were more obvious! I believe the modern equivalent to a gold tooth is a diamond embedded in the porcelain crown. Certainly puts a new meaning to having a sparkling smile! 🙂


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