Thursday, 31 December 2009

Happy New Year!

So the decade comes to a close. A decade that started in South Africa at an outdoor rave party, if not footloose then fancy free at the end of the very turbulant decade of my 20s (lost love, death, degrees, work, going out, gaining life experience - peaks and troughs, although by the end it sort of felt like there were more troughs than peaks, or perhaps the troughs were deeper). At the close of the decade I have stepped into a proper adult life: home owning, 12 year partnership with the boyfiend and a better job. Sensible achivements all. Also rediscovered a way to have a creative output - started life drawing, started blogging and started making ceramics. I am also an auntie, a nurse and an agony aunt. Still struggling to decide what I want to do when I grow up. Perhaps the next decade will shed some light on that.

So it started with Bails in South Africa dancing wildly in a summer night heat, and it ends with Bails on the sofa at my house drinking champaign and watching Jools Holland.

Happy New Year to You!

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

After Christmas, Before New Year

Dead time between Christmas and new year. Don't really have anything to do, don't want to do anything either. Rain, gloomy, dank. Cold. Had to go to work today. Work neighbourhood is dominated by tourists rather than the usual suits. Work place is only a quarter full. The christmas tree in the main entrance (two floors tall) has not been watered and is showing signs of fatigue - lower limbs are drooping, needles all over the floor. In the street many organisations have discarded them already (chucked into doorways).

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Christmas Cheer!

So, its well and truely over. Turkey was cooked, due to mis-timing it was ready before the vegetables even got into the oven (planning for next time - try not to be the cook and the chauffeur - too long collecting people to bring over meant I wasn't present to direct the helpers to get the veggies on to par boil in time - perhaps an hour of grumpy Harriet while we tried to catch up, fortunately once it all gets under control again the grump goes away). We forgot to do crackers so nobody had to wear a cracker hat, sis's husband didn't have to tape two together in order to get it over his head. Two of the new strings of lights had partial failure shortly after being put on the tree, but not soon enough so they could be taken off and marched back to the shop. Ended the day with 6 (dad, me, sis Amy, her husband John, their kids) on the sofa, broken-back Bails got a chair to herself. Mostly it was dad, John and Amy snoozing; me, the kids and Bails watching Bolt on dvd.

Hope you all had a lovely day and wishing you all a happy new year!

Monday, 21 December 2009

Big Snow

Novelty for me - having a car - we rent one sometimes when we may need to travel around but there won't be any public transport (christmas day for instance). It gets used a lot then for doing the chores like picking up heavy groceries in the supermarket. We drove in. Shopped. Came out - blizzard had started (London blizzard - say 5 inches of snow, in an hour). We got in the car, joined a queue of traffic trying to exit the supermarket. Two and a half hours later we actually managed it. We weren't the only ones - someone texted in to Chris Evans drive time saying they were stuck in Sainsbury's carpark in Hull. Perhaps its the design of Sainsbury's car parks the land over - bottle necks the lot of them.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Bus Queue Rage

47 pulls up at Liverpool Street, empty. The 3rd woman getting onto the bus looks as though she tries to trip up the woman ahead of her. Misses. But she does manage to bump her roughly, barging past to get a seat downstairs. Sorry she says without meaning it and without any eye contact. Bumped woman goes upstairs confused.

Perhaps she got on the bus out of order therefore infuriating the woman who ended up behind her. This is now probably more normal than waiting in line these days at London bus stops.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009


Clear watery grey eyes, brown skin, crows feet crease in a smile.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Christmas Countdown

Deck the halls with boughs of holly tralalala...
  1. I've made a Christmas cake - extra glace cherries, fed with rum on two occasions now.
  2. Bought Christmas cards, will try to send them this year, don't usually get round to it.
  3. Started shopping - got a couple of items down - spoke to my sister today she was picking up her last item. Maybe I'm behind...
  4. Picked up some new wrapping paper - for when I eventually get the shopping done.
  5. Made mincemeat - put in extra orange peel, more cinnamon and mixed spice than it asked for, and decided to put in ground ginger. Gave the mixture a good kick.
  6. Done a reccy at the shops a couple of times (Selfridges, Covent Garden, Tottenham Court Road, Islington Upper Street) - don't like to choose too soon, like to get a good overview before making decisions. Need to scan the product, think about the people for whom something is needed and then rush round like a maniac on Christmas Eve picking it all up and hoping I can remember where I saw it.

Still to do:
  • Get a Christmas tree (need a tall but not too bushy one I think)
  • Decide where to put it - don't have a natural place for it at present which is not in the way.
  • Shopping - actual purchases rather than window shopping.
  • Food shopping - when the time comes

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

West London Ladies

A bit footballers wives bling used to shopping in Harvey Nicks and Harrods, others some sloaney hair and pearls. Lots of expensive handbags.

Not like the North East London girls I'm used to - primark rip-offs of designer gear, bling in the cheapest possible sense, keen on the Croydon face-lift and achingly straight ironed hair.

Different parts of London have clearly distinct feels. I've grown accustomed to South London, also a bit more eastly North London, but I've never really come to terms with West London. A bit too posh, a bit too spoiled rich girls.