Computer literacy levels have skyrocketed this week after a Newchurch couple were given a second-hand laptop computer by relatives from the mainland.
Mr and Mrs Charles Loveridge, residents of Winford Road, were thrilled with the gift from Mr Loveridge's cousin from Gosport, which arrived in Sandown by courier pedalo three days ago and was hand-delivered to their house by tricycle just under a day later.
'I had no idea that a computer would be so useful to us,' said Mrs Loveridge, 'but as soon as I opened the lid and saw inside I was hooked. I was pleasantly surprised with the available expansion room in the case too. The lid can move a little on its hinges and accommodate quite a thick tuna steak, sealing both sides at once. So far we've used it for fish, bacon, sausage and even some halved tomatoes. I can't wait to try a cheese toastie. I love the way that the fat drips out into the little plastic tray rather than staying in the food.'
The Loveridges have come across a few teething difficulties with the new technology, but are determined to overcome them. 'We've only had electricity since February so we're not very accomplished with new gadgets, but we're quick learners,' explained Mr Loveridge. 'Our sodium vapour lamp has been the talk of the village for months, but this computer has really got everyone completely gob-smacked. The machine does run quite hot after a few minutes, so I certainly wouldn't call it a laptop -- I've got significant blistering on my thighs already -- but it's truly a blessing to have it here.'
The only other known computer user on the island, Trevor Lincoln from nearby Horringford, has offered to help with any problems the Loveridges come across when using their new machine. 'I've got lots of hints and tips for them,' he said, 'For example, when I tried to use it as a multimedia player, my favourite Val Doonican album melted exceptionally quickly and stuck to the top griddle tray. I know it claims to have a Teflon coating, but it was still a nightmare trying to scrape all that vinyl off once it had set hard. I can certainly advise them not to bother with that and to keep their gramophone handy. Oh, and I really don't recommend trying to access pornography with it -- I didn't receive anything other a smell of singed flesh and second degree penile burns.'