Delays and cancellations

Faster than you can say déja vu, Big T’s flight back from France was cancelled last night after a five hour delay. He spent the night in an airport hotel in Nice with an €80 bottle of wine he was bringing home. I feel slightly robbed.

Quick as a flash, I booked him on to a British Airways flight for Saturday evening. We’ll see if BA come through as they also cancelled their first flight of the day this morning. It doesn’t bode well.

Plan C is another EasyJet flight on Sunday.

Last year it was drone strikes over Gatwick which resulted in a three day delay and then he ended up in South End. I’m suggesting he rethinks the annual Christmas deadline…

On another note, the south western trains in the UK are affected by strikes and flooding so even if he makes it back tonight, there’s another challenge ahead as we’re off to Devon on Monday… hopefully!

Love travelling at Christmas!

The end is nigh

I made it to the last day of work for the year, hurrah!

With a team lunch, a farewell to a colleague going on maternity leave and a jaunty wave goodbye, I left the building. I had survived 2019 and it did feel like an endurance test at times.

I will remember 2019 as the year of hard graft. There have been many other years of graft but this one has surpassed all others for certain reasons.

Seven months of living under a box, twelve months without a kitchen, three months without a bathroom and so on. Top that off with a hard year at work, a restructure and a merger and then add the icing on the cake, an election and an inevitable Brexit, and it’s certainly a year to remember.

It’s ending well though as things have settled down at work, building works have progressed to a point where we feel like humans, we now have lights in the kitchen and plaster in the hall and while the builders will be back in the new year, the end is in sight.

All that’s left to do is hope Big T makes it back from France and we’re able to make it to Devon despite the rail strikes!

And so I’m ready to pop the bubbly and celebrate the end of 2019 eleven days early!

Party, party, party

Last week we had the Consumer Products Christmas party in the shape of a bingo night in Camden. I didn’t win but it was good fun.

The next night I went to a non-corporate Christmas dinner with twelve women, some of whom I didn’t know but we talked about lots of things including Welsh Terriers. It was good fun.

Yesterday we celebrated two birthdays and three baby showers followed by drinks in the Consumer Products kitchen and then the big corporate annual Christmas bash.

It was fun but after an hour at the big party I left. I came home relieved that corporate Christmas was over for this year.

I sat down and watched the election coverage. It wasn’t fun.

I feel like I’ve done Christmas and there are still twelve days to go!

All I can say is No more Prosecco!


My three least favourite words in the last twenty four hours are “Get Brexit Done” closely followed by “oven ready.”

With a buffoon who can’t utter a coherent sentence now officially elected by the people of this country (and I’m entitled to my opinion) Brexit or as I think I’ll call it, Brexmess is inevitable.

For people who have French property and travel almost weekly to Europe, this is a disaster.

Let’s hope we don’t need a visa. As for Agnes, she may be summering in Maida Vale next year.

Let’s see what happens next…

A year without a kitchen

If you’d told me a year ago when I was setting up a folding trestle table, a mini fridge, a single hob and a slug doing laps on the old brown carpet that we’d still be kitchenless a year later, I may not have been able to cope. And yet here we still are, scratching away, now with the addition of a microwave.

It’s been a hard year, I cannot lie and not one I’d be keen to repeat. We’re not there yet as we still have builders in everyday, mess everywhere and each weekend involves a marathon cleaning session just to get to a point of barely clean, but we now have plaster on the walls and that’s always a good thing.

To the untrained eye it probably doesn’t look like progress but to us we’re seeing plaster on the walls, new French doors, plumbing finally sorted and pipes under the floor instead of hanging off the walls and lights and sockets ready to be installed.

In January we’ll be installing the floor (the old floor is rotten and collapsing by the day) and then in early February allowing for Christmas and delivery, we’ll finally be installing a kitchen. It had better be worth the wait! Mind you, by that stage we will be penniless and living on baked beans so a fancy induction job and a steam oven aren’t going to get much use!

I must say though I am excited about having a washing machine again as I pack up my bag to head to the laundrette.

Only for another couple of months I hope…

X marks the spot

At 7am this morning I queued up to place my pencil scratch in a box. I did my civic duty and voted in this mess of an election.

What do you do when you don’t like any of the candidates? You vote strategically and stick to your beliefs. Or at least , try to.

We’ll see what happens this evening as the votes are tallied up. Either way it’s a case of being between a rock and a hard place.

Merry Brexmas!

One year on

It’s a year since we moved house and while it’s been slow, we’re finally seeing progress.

The bathroom is a very different experience to a year ago (thank god) no stench from the drain, kitty litter or handicapped power shower. The 1980s Japanese toilet is a distant (well, not distant enough) memory and the first day of cleaning it whilst wearing a cycling mask seems surreal.

Now we have glistening chrome taps, a wet room shower, under floor heating and a suspended toilet (certainly the nicest toilet I’ve ever lived with!) The shower cascades down a herringbone feature wall and soft lighting washes the wall. It will be quite a tranquil experience when its completely finished.

We now have new windows and a large mirror so that leaves the sink and floating shelves and the door. I’m looking forward to the door!

Deck the Halls

Continuing with the updates, the hall is now half plastered (much like myself) and the end is in sight for connecting the good rooms.

I’ve found the entry hall very depressing (first impressions and all that) as bare bricks and loose wires, while cool in a Soho loft, don’t really work in a Victorian mansion block.

The mess of removing the old plaster has been incredible and the dust endless so again, clean and clean and do it again. A seemingly futile exercise but necessary or it would be even worse. And so I roll up my sleeves every weekend and put in a few hours hard graft showering off thick layers of dust at the end.

There’s something quite unpleasantly nostalgic about the smell of wet and drying plaster (it tends to get into my lungs) but as the brown begins to lighten and (in the next week or two) will be ready for painting, a transformation will take place.

I shall soon fling open the front door with joy (once it stops sticking) and admire beautiful walls, elegant Farrow & Ball colours and round glass pendant lights leading the way to the kitchen.

Patience my friends, it’s been a long old journey.