Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Familiar faces

We had a Book Group Christmas get together on Monday evening and it was a really good evening and oddly comforting, in a way I didn't expect.  One of the joys of the evening was spending time in the company of familiar friendly faces, which made me realise that I had been missing that aspect of daily life in the routine of journey, work, journey, B husband and children.  I miss my friends.   Which makes my existence over these 3 weeks or so sound a bit miserable, which it hasn't; just a bit intense I suppose.  But that's inevitable and is why I wish, I wish I could fast-forward 3 months or so when everything and everyone is more familiar.    Not that I want them to be my friends, at least I don't expect that to happen. 

Some other random realisations in no particular order:-
  • As a Solicitor and mother/woman in her forties, I am no longer part of the 'young' crowd at work;
  • Staff Christmas parties are therefore to be endured rather than enjoyed;
  • My age shows in my degree of sartorial formality;
  • I may have fussed a bit too much about the clothes before I started;
  • Apart from the gnawing insecurity, (whisper it) I think I am enjoying the challenge;
  • Marks & Spencer, Moorgate is offering joints of Lamb & Beef half-price (and BM loves a bargain)  
  • I need a cleaner/wife
So back to book group - well, we are evolving, but then that's life I suppose, nothing stands still - it's either going backwards or forwards and I know which one I want.

More thoughts from the frontline to follow.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Just visiting

So I am nearly at the end of my first 2 weeks of full-time employment in 6 years but more of that another time.  No, what I would like to share with you now is one of the downsides I suppose of occupying any house which is over 150 years old.

I should begin by saying that I am something of a creature of habit.  I like tea first thing before anything else, coffee later on.  I like being first one up in the morning and I especially like being alone in the kitchen with the radio on, in that short time space before the children wake up.

Over the past 12 days or so of adjusting to employment again, I have used these precious minutes to take stock, plan (as much as possible) my day ahead and enjoy the peace.   Until today...

You see we now have some new, rather famous neighbours (yes, even more famous than Lionel!) and they have set about re-plastering and goodness knows what else to the house.  Not a problem you might think since the workmen don't arrive before 8am.  But they are not the problem, in fact I'm delighted that they are having the work done. 

No, it's something else.  We are semi-attached and I suspect share common underfloor spaces and possibly also roof spaces although I can't be sure of that since I have never been up in the loft.   Not to put too fine a point on it:  Mr (and I suspect Mrs and the children) Mouse have packed their bags and moved into ours.    We met this morning shortly after I switched on the lights in the kitchen.  They seemed to have been having some sort of meeting in the middle of the kitchen floor - no doubt concerning their new accommodation.

Having spent a not inconsiderable sum over the years on pest eradication, I am gloomy about the prospects of shared co-habitation.  It won't work because I now know too much about their hygiene habits, reproduction etc.  But the memory of the smell of decomposing mouse/several probably, under our floorboards is also still fresh.  If we call in the experts again, the Mouse family will simply head on back next door for a while I suppose.

I suspect I may have to broach the subject of a joint instruction (with new famous people).  It's not what I had in mind when I pictured our conversations over Christmas drinks.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

That's entertainment

Like a good percentage of the population, BM and family are fans of Saturday (and now Sunday) evening TV staples, "Stricly Come Dancing" and "X Factor".  Although we can claim to have been early adopters of SCD, we are what can only be described as Johnny-come-latelies to the XF, having started watching at the beginning of the '09 season.     We have actively ignored the other viewing phenomenon that is "I'm a Celebrity..." on the basis that it's little more than licensed bullying, despite the proviso that the victims are (a) celebrities and (b) volunteered.   I wish I lived in a world where IACGMOOH didn't exist but it does and who knows, maybe it distracts the many milliions who enjoy it from other serious problems.  But to my squeamish conscience, what I have seen feels a bit too much like a form of Roman entertainment (and I don't mean La Dolce Vita).  

So I at least, have enjoyed SCD for the simple things -  the spangly dresses and sequins, fake tan, campness,  innuendo of the judging panel and Brucie as well as the acceptable levels of sex for teatime viewing (I give you the Argentine tango...)  But what with John Sergeant and now Ann Widdecombe, it's starting to make me feel a bit queasy...people seem to be voting for her, in order to see her further humiliate herself for our entertainment.  It's as if we grew tired of simply watching people learn to dance, improve, compete and ultimately, win.    But what's wrong with just keeping it simple, I mean isn't the rest of life just complicated enough?

As for XF, in this household we watch on the basis that it is all ultimately controlled by Mr Cowell and I suspect he will contrive a result which best suits his purposes this year, as every other year.   He thinks it's time a group won, so this year his group will almost certainly get to the final.     The internet campaign for Wagner has failed to derail the Cowell project but now that Wagner and Katie (again, more cruelty as entertainment...) are out, so far as the BM household is concerned, it's Matt to win!