So I called the insurance people today about the hubcaps. The car is a company car, so everything has to go through them. If it was my personal car, I probably wouldn't bother, as it's just cosmetic, but I thought I ought to go through the proper channels. First stop was a call centre in Rotherham.
"Hello, my name's Laura Nunn. I have a Corsa through the company car scheme." I gave them my registration number. "My hubcaps have been stolen."
(Best South Yorkshire accent please) "Eeh, the cheeky buggers. I'll just put you through to the right department."
I was transferred to a call centre - going by accent alone - somewhere near Newcastle.
"Hello. My name's Laura Nunn. I'm calling to report my hubcaps stolen."
(Please put on your best Geordie accent whilst imagining the next line. I can't do the Geordie accent, so you're going to have to imagine it quite hard): "Your hubcaps?"
"Yes, that's right," I confirmed.
"Can you explain to me what hubcaps are?" asked the Geordie.
I was genuinely floored. I had called a car insurance company - and the staff had never heard of hubcaps.
"Erm," I said, "they go on the wheel."
"So they've taken your wheels then?" said the Geordie.
"No - not the wheel, the hubcap."
"But what's a hubcap?"
"I can't think of a synonym!"
"What's a synonym?"
Progress was slow with the Geordie. Eventually I tried, "Imagine a car... You know the wheels? Well, it's the silver bit in the middle of the wheel."
"Oooh," said the Geordie. "Like a mudflap, like?"
"No," I said. "Like a hubcap. In the middle of the wheel."
"I'll ger and get my supervisor," said the Geordie.
Hubcaps and I are not great friends.