Monday, April 28, 2008

Carry On Caring...

I've got a lot to catch up with, so I'll begin at the beginning.. are you sitting comfortably?

To follow on from my last post, Son's music event in London on Friday night was a great success. They had a good crowd, and everyone enjoyed the music. Son was dee-jaying with his music partner, another gorgeous D-J (they're jointly known as Living City - see previous post) and Daughter was on the door! She really enjoyed her night too.. I think she enjoys being in a position of power.

Next morning (Saturday), I drove to Kent to do my Florence Nightingale impression for Aristocratic BF, who is bed-bound after her accident and consequent operation. Well, what a drama. ABF had telephoned in the morning to ask if I would arrive in time for lunch, as her (very expensive, Private) Carer would be cooking. I was expecting at least Cordon Bleu standard and was a bit concerned about being 15 minutes late, but I needn't have worried. I was greeted in the drive by a worried-looking young lad who darted indoors to announce my arrival. Mysterious. When I got inside, ABF was sitting up in bed, in her Sitting Room, looking very regal, but rather pale. "It's the Carer", she said, "We can't wake her up." Well, I was all for going to do that very thing when my Friend said, "No, don't wake her, the Manager's on her way and they want to catch her out." It transpired that this "Carer" (I use the term lightly) had disappeared regularly while on duty, leaving ABF unable to get out of bed, or go to the loo; had turned off her monitor so that no-one could get hold of her; had shouted at my Friend a lot; had spent most of her time on her mobile phone, and had finally fallen asleep on the sofa in the Conservatory! All efforts to wake her had failed - and the anxious young lad turned out to be the Plumber's Mate (they were installing a downstairs shower for ABF) who had been frantically trying to help. I did pop my head round the Conservatory door, and saw Ms. Carer lying spark-out, with her mouth hanging open. And I didn't like the look of her. When the Manager of the Care Company finally arrived, (she got lost twice) there ensued a regular shouting match in the Conservatory, while I tried to calmly boil an egg for my starving and wobbly ABF. The Carer was shown the door, and the Manager came into the kitchen to talk to me. She opened up the official File, to check the notes, and there, nestling inside the cover, were three empty miniature whisky bottles. "Ah," said our Manager " I think we may have solved the mystery!"
Precisement, Mon Ami! Not only had Ms Carer emptied the bottles, she had also noted in the file that my ABF had been doing the drinking! After the dust had settled, we could see the funny side of it. My ABF ate a hearty boiled egg and soldiers, I had a cup of tea, and we thanked our lucky stars that ABF is not a vulnerable and isolated little old lady. The outcome could have been a lot more serious. As I said at the time, you couldn't make it up!

The weekend followed a frantic course after that - for me that is. My ABF is used to issuing orders, so I was Cook, Housekeeper and general skivvy for two days. I sorted the Airing Cupboard, organised her clothes so that the Carers would be able to dress her, cooked a risotto on Saturday and a roast on Sunday, watered the Greenhouse, cut the asparagus, went shopping, dressed and undressed her, ran up and down stairs countless times, made countless cups of tea and countless hot-water bottles, escorted ABF to the loo countless times, and laughed a lot. By the end of the weekend, we had told the Carer story to everyone ABF knows, and each time it got funnier. After all this, ABF was looking and feeling much brighter, so I was able to leave her this morning in very good spirits. 'Tis true that laughter is undoubtedly the best medicine.

On Friday, before all this excitement, I had a day out with another BF, at Gunwharf Quays in Portsmouth. As you know, I'm not a great shopper, but this was a wonderful experience. The place is full of Designer Outlet shops, and is right on the edge of the Portsmouth Docks - an interesting development and planned so that you can stroll around the shops or sit and watch the boats, whatever takes your fancy. The only reason I'm telling you this, is because we managed to get the bargain of the century - twice! We wandered into the Ralph Lauren Polo shop, where my BF made her way to a rack of long, indigo linen coats. Think Commes des Garcons, loose, unstructured and F*** Off gorgeous. They were marked £64.99 and my BF tried one on. At this point, another woman came over to us, protesting that the price had been increased since she came in, ten minutes before. I said, "Really?" not sure what else to say, while my BF stayed schtum. The other woman attracted the attention of a Salesman, and asked him why the price increase from £45 to £65. We just stood there and listened. After a bit of a discussion, the Sales guy said, "Oh alright, I'll do them for £29.98" What?? Where did that come from? My BF promptly grabbed her coat, I grabbed one too, and we went to try them on again. To cut a long story short, we each bought one for £29.98. My BF waited until we were outside the shop and then said. "The last time I was here, those coats were £500!" Hoots of laughter and total disbelief (from me). As I said, the Bargain of the Century..

PS. The best news for me, is that when I got home today, I discovered that I had lost two pounds in weight over the weekend. Must do it again some time...

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Shameless Promotion!

Just back to try and add a commercial for Son and his music event tomorrow night in London - which seems to have worked. If you want to hear some examples of their music, the link is here

Dying for something to eat...

Yesterday morning I heard an item on the news about price fixing in Supermarkets. Apparently Somerfield had been caught fixing prices on cheese and butter - which of course they deny. All I can say is that someone certainly did some fixing, because a few months ago the prices of these staples suddenly jumped considerably. Tesco's own-label butter, for example, jumped practically overnight from 54p to 85p. And when I went looking in other supermarkets to see what they were doing, all of them had priced their butter similarly. And I'm talking Sainsbury's, Waitrose and The Co-op. Suddenly it was impossible to buy butter any cheaper - anywhere. Maybe Somerfields were the ones who were caught red-handed, but I bet they're all equally guilty. Now, if it were a move to benefit the producers and the farmers, I'd be all in favour, but you bet it wasn't. It's about profits, the devil profits. And the fact that, given no choice, we all have to pay their prices. May they all go to hell in a handcart.

I suppose, though, that we all ought to be glad we're not living in Zimbabwe. Apart from the obvious awfulness of Mugabe and his ghastly army who are prepared to kill for votes, there's their inflation rate which is currently running at 165%. This of course serves to focus the minds of those poor people. If you are starving, your children are starving, and you can't earn enough money to buy a loaf of bread, then you're not going to be arguing about politics are you? That is unless you are very brave and prepared to sacrifice your life for the cause. I do hope that something terrible happens to Mugabe the Monster, and soon. Does it not occur to him that when he eventually falls off his perch, the only reaction will be celebrations and cheering? Surely he doesn't expect to be remembered as the saviour of the people, despite his earlier successes. These same people are the ones he is beating into submission if they fail to agree with him. It simply reinforces the truth of the old saying about "Absolute Power" - it corrupts absolutely. Absolutely..

Monday, April 21, 2008

Ups and Downs..

So much to say, so little time. I had a really busy weekend because Sister decided to come and stay (it was an impromptu visit), which was lovely, but it meant I didn't have the time to sit at the computer and catch up!

Poor Aristocratic BF, last Tuesday she apparently went out early into her frosty garden and slipped on the paving, breaking her hip. This was a nightmare, because she was outside in the freezing cold, in a lot of pain, and with no means of communication. How she managed it I don't know, but she did eventually drag herself round to the front of the house and attract the attention of a passing neighbour from the drive. It took one and a half hours. Poor Friend. She was whisked off to hospital in Maidstone and they have pinned her broken hip. We have spoken on the phone, and though she obviously missed out on her planned holiday (she was due to fly to Lanzarote last Thursday), she sounds much better. And her Sons have rallied round, which is very good. I'm planning to go and visit when she gets home from hospital at the end of this week.

The weekend was lovely, starting with dinner at our local French Restaurant with my two BBFs on Friday evening, a real treat (especially as they insisted on paying, which was a complete surprise!) I got up early and walked on Saturday; it was blustery and rainy but still invigorating. The sea was whipped up into cornetto-style waves and I loved the feel of the soft rain on my face - they do say that it's good for the skin and it certainly feels like it. Sister arrived in the afternoon and we enjoyed the usual catching up with the gossip, plus a stir-fry supper with some gorgeous prawns and asparagus and a couple of glasses of wine just to help it go down. Then on Sunday we got up early and went to the Car Boot Sale at Brighton Station. This was great fun - it was lovely and sunny and there were lots of bargains to be had. Not that I needed a thing, but a Betty Jackson skirt and a Jaeger cashmere for a total of £10 were just too good to pass up. I wished I could have made room for lots more, but there it is. We shared a scrummy bacon sandwich with our coffee, sitting in the sun, and came back feeling very satisfied. It was so hot that we sat on my balcony all afternoon, soaking up the sun and musing on life in general and the thought of life in France in particular. Then she had to drive back to London, and I went out to a Pub Quiz, picking up Gay Friend on the way. There were only three of us in the team, so we didn't expect much, but we picked up a prize for the best team name (The Spritzer Sisters) and we sent Gay Friend up to collect our box of chocs, since he was an honorary Spritzer Sister for the evening. Sad to say, we demolished the whole box in record time between the three of us. Ah well, back to the diet again..

Friday, April 18, 2008

Minding my Ps and Qs

Just a quick "Thank you" and acknowledgements to the donors of my latest two Awards, The Mother of This Lot and her lovely Daughter, The Fixer. I'm so delighted with them, and must apologise that it has taken me so long to get around to it. I'm not doing terribly well with the third though, which is a "Blog of Distinction" Award - somehow it just won't go on - or I can't get it to upload. Perhaps my computer is trying to tell me something? I'll try again later...

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Surprise, Surprise...

Amazing to hear on the news this morning that Golden Brown is meeting up with all those other "Merchant Bankers" in New York, to try and sort out the economic crisis. Huh. If he had maybe read my Blog last Summer (not so very funny) he might have realized that things weren't going too well. We could all see where that greedy, grasping Monetary Policy was leading. Well, most of us anyway. Now, of course, whatever they do, it's too little, too late. Now he's in the deep do-do, and it serves him right. Unfortunately we're all in it with him. And we haven't just awarded ourselves a 26% Pay Rise, have we? All those in Parliament, who supposedly represent all of us, should now be feeling heartily ashamed of themselves. But of course, once they get into that privileged position, with all those jammy perks, they seem to somehow forget all their scruples and all their promises. Well, whatever it is those Bankers are doing at their meetings, I hope they all go blind!

Cleaning out my Toaster this morning I remembered something very funny that happened years ago. When the children were babies, we lived in a beautiful old Hall House in a Kent village called Milstead. Two of our neighbours, who became good friends, were the Hulls (of Rod and Emu fame). Rod and Cher, his wife, had three small children, about the same ages as ours, and they lived in the Manor House, which was in the centre of the village. Anyway, they used to let out the Main House sometimes to make a bit of extra cash, and would move into one of their other, smaller houses. On one occasion they were asked to check the Toaster because the tenants couldn't get it to work, and it was rather smelly. Cher, who was the practical one, went to look and was nearly sick when she discovered a toasted, and very dead, mouse stuck in the bottom of the smelly machine. We did laugh when she described trying to get the poor thing out without the tenants realizing what she had found! I think they had to replace the Toaster...

PS. Speaking of my amazing prescience (with regard to the Credit Crunch), there was another example on Woman's Hour today which I only partly caught. Jenni Murray was discussing with two other women the distasteful Japanese "Manga" Comics (which I commented on in "A Cruel Race" on 14th August last year) and their pornographic content. I didn't hear the whole discussion, sadly, but wanted to shout at the radio (again) when I heard one woman saying that she didn't think that this pornographic material could possibly damage children (apparently it portrayed children but only drawn - not photographed!), because it is meant for adult consumption!! (I must go on-line and listen to the whole item.) Dear God, how do these people sleep at nights. And do they seriously think that any of that is OK?

Monday, April 14, 2008

Techno-Dope - that's me!

Okay, so who's the complete dope - I'm afraid the answer has to be me. This morning, bright and early (9.30 am) the phone rang and it was John Lewis. A very cheery chap with a Scottish accent (sounding just like Doctor Who, or should I say David Tennant) asked me if I was having problems with my new TV. We had a very brief conversation. He told me to take the remote control in my hand and press this tiny little button (very hard to find among all those buttons - it's the biggest remote I've ever seen) which said TV/DTV. This I did and Hey Presto (magic) there were all my lost channels, hiding behind that tiny button. I told him I thought he was wonderful, and thanked him profusely, and then I phoned Son to thank him too - again - because he had obviously done it perfectly well on Friday, it's just that neither of us knew which button to press to make it work properly. (And after looking again in the 55 page impenetrable instruction booklet, I still wouldn't have been any the wiser!) I am seriously thinking of phoning Samsung and suggesting that I re-write the destructions, because honestly they are written in a completely foreign language. I'm sure there are more Techno-Dopes out there, like me, who would be grateful for a clear explanation. Simply "Press this button" would help!

Today is Son's moving day too, and he has already been here to collect all his stuff from the loft, and from the Storage Unit. He and his friend were very cheerful, considering all the lifting and loading they had to do (there were at least 5 boxes of records, the heavy vinyl kind). Plus his bed and mattress, his large mirror and amps, speakers, clothes, bedclothes etc. They also took the piano stool, which looks lovely now it has been stripped and the seat recovered. The wardrobe is still in the downstairs hall, though, because no-one has room for it. I have offered it to either my downstairs neighbour, or my friend across the road, on long-term loan. One way or another, that should sort it out. Anyway, I'm expecting to hear from Son later when they have driven back and forth and loaded and unloaded more stuff. It will be great to hear that they are in their new home at last.

"Quelle Day", as Holly Golightly might have said. I'm just off to the Tip with more rubbish...

PS. I really have been remiss with the three lovely, shiny new Awards I have recently been given. I will put them onto my Blog later (after the trip to the Tip) and thank the givers properly. Toodlepip for now!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Help! I need Somebody..Help! Not just Anybody..

Help. Help, HELP. I have got this bluddy (Shakespearean spelling) TV and can't, CAN'T get it set up properly. The man in Peter Jones said it was terribly easy to do. Huh!! If that's terrible easy then I'm a monkey's uncle. I need a fixer, no, I need THE FIXER.

I'll start at the beginning. Several days ago I decided that I'd had enough of being pathetic, and went on-line to buy this TV (Samsung, 26", built-in Freeview, HD Ready), which I'd seen in Peter Jones and had been advised (by the Salesman) to buy on-line as I would get free delivery on top of the free 5 year guarantee. Seemed like a good deal. So I sallied bravely forth (on-line) and bought the sodding thing on my John Lewis card (6 months interest-free credit). It duly arrived yesterday morning (during the five-minute space when I was drying my hair upstairs - do they do that on purpose?) Luckily though, my downstairs neighbour was home and took the delivery! I didn't even attempt to remove it from its package as I'm terrified of new machines (see my previous Post) and didn't fancy tangling with it, despite the Salesman's assurance that it couldn't be easier.

Part 2: Son, as it happened, had been made redundant last week, from his wonderful job in the music business in London. Fortunately for me, he didn't tell me until he had actually dealt with it and found himself another job. (He knows my bad habits, and I would have both panicked, and worried, terribly.) The end result of this is that, despite moving, taking on a new mortgage and being made redundant, he will actually be better off financially because of his redundancy payment (tax free). I must say he was enviably philosophical about the whole business, and sounded completely fine! He was invited to a very posh wedding in Somerset yesterday and the day before, and drove back today, via Brighton, to sort out some of his stuff in the Loft before the moving day - which turns out to be Monday (14th), not the 24th, as I had previously been told. (I hope you're still following this?) Anyway, I (perhaps unwisely) asked him if he would set up the new TV for me, which he did. Bearing in mind that he had had only two (or was it three) hours sleep, had driven here from Somerset, was probably still hung over, and had spent an hour in the loft chucking out his past, I guess I wasn't going to get his full attention or the best result. To cut a long story short, the TV isn't right. I have only 5 channels - and this on a TV which supposedly has Freeview built in. I have phoned John Lewis and they have promised to get back to me, but, as I said to Daughter, if they phone me and give me instructions, I still won't have a clue, and will panic and worry in equal measures, and get the bloody thing wrong again. HELP. Oh Fixer, where art thou?

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Let the Tagging begin...

Ok, here goes with the answers. I was tagged by Mother's Pride, and I'm sorry that it has taken me so long to get this Post together:

1. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning.
2. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
3. The player then tags 5 people, goes to their Blogs and leaves them a comment telling them they've been tagged and asking them to read their Blog. (phew)


I was living in Cambridge. Son was 18 and Daughter was 16. They were doing A Levels and GCSEs respectively. I was a self-employed Designer/Writer, with some Teaching thrown in (in my spare time!). We lived overlooking the Botanical Gardens and had 2 cats.


Actually I don't like Snacks, but if forced:
Pistachio Nuts, Pecans and Almonds.
Basil and Black Olive Twists (from T***o) - great with a glass of wine.
Nothing else.


Give all my Family and Friends what they need to relieve all financial worries.
Then take everyone away on a wonderful holiday.
Give a lot of it away to Charities that help Children all over the World.
Buy a house in France.


Au Pair. Bank Clerk. Copywriter. Designer (Graphics,Interiors and Gardens), Full time Mother.


I Worry. I Panic. I'm hopeless with new Machines.


Essex. London. Gloucestershire. Cambridge. Hove Actually.


Dusty Spider
Family Affairs
Working Mum on the Verge

That's all Folks.. and I hope you think it was worth the effort.
Now I've got to bustle over to all those lovely Blogs and give them the good news...

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Thanks to The Fixer..and her Mum.

I'm back again because I forgot to add this new Award, generously given to me by Mother's Pride, courtesy of one of her lovely Daughters (The Fixer). Here it is, and I'll be passing it on!

And here are those lucky Bloggers whom I hope will be happy to receive this Award: I can imagine having a great chat with all of you!

Stinking Billy
Family Affairs
Potty Mummy
Retired and Crazy

I have also been tagged by Mother's Pride, so I have plenty to be getting on with..

A PS for Dusty Spider and Soft in the Head - I was going to give this Award to you too, but see you already have it. Never mind, it's the thought that counts..

Snowy Sunday.

Posting from a Winter Wonderland this morning (sorry afternoon). We woke this morning to a white world, and snow falling thick and fast - try saying that quickly. Grandson couldn't wait to get outside and make a snowman with Daughter. I didn't want to go out really, but provided a carrot for the nose (Chantenay of course for the perfect little snub nose) and a couple of stones for the eyes. We gave him arms too, so he is waving at the passers-by. Daughter, Grandson, the Boyfriend and his daughter have now gone off to Hastings to have lunch with some friends - and they couldn't have chosen a worse day for driving. Ho-Hum, they didn't seem bothered, but I hope they have a safe journey. The Boyfriend has been asked to be Best Man for this chap (I hope that wasn't him on the beach yesterday!) at the end of May, and they are getting together to make plans. Let's hope the weather will be more seasonal for the Wedding.

Now for the business of more catching up with Blogging Friends: Maggie May was so lovely and reassuring about my problems and worries with Son back in February (so were you all actually, but Maggie hadn't visited and commented before) Her Blog is called Nuts in May, and she loves being a grandmother too. Then there is The Mother of This Lot who introduced herself at about the same time, and sympathized with my worries about Son too. It was she who explained the difference between apron strings and heartstrings! She has FIVE girls, on her own - how she copes I don't know, but she does, and with great good humour. Her Blog is called Mother's Pride. Do pay them both a visit if you haven't done so before. Thanks to you both, and let's hope I've managed to follow Donna's and Dusty's instructions and embed links for you. If I've got it wrong, I'll just have to try again.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

So nice to come home to..

I never thought I'd say it, but I'm so pleased not to be going anywhere this evening. I can settle down with my glass of wine and catch up, while Grandson slumbers in my bed, cuddling his teddy bears. It has been a tough week, socially, and though I'm not complaining, neither am I planning to go anywhere or do anything for a while. I'm just going to be a couch, or computer, potato.

Last night was the cherry on top of the cupcake. I went to meet a group of friends at Blanch House in Brighton for a Birthday celebration. Now this watering hole/posh hotel has been bruited abroad as the best in Town - but I have to say I wasn't impressed. First off, it's practically impossible to find - which is taking exclusivity a touch too far I think. One of the gathered friends had tried to locate it on the Internet, but failed because the website doesn't give an address!! I walked down Atlingworth Street (there's a clue for anyone wanting to find it) and couldn't see anything that looked remotely like a hotel. I eventually located it by simply looking at the house names and numbers, and there it was, Blanch House, modestly painted above a door which wouldn't open. You have to ring a bell! And then you are brought in to a semi-dark room with a sparkly bar at one end. The group of friends was already there, crushed together at the dark end of the room on a banquette (how old fashioned) with those square, uncomfortable stools set around a table, so that any latecomers could all be equally uncomfortable. Anyway, to cut a long story short, cocktails are £7 or £8 each and crisps are £3! We debated whether the charge was made up of 49p for the crisps and £2.50 to set them out by hand in the bowl. Or maybe one crisp only was cut from each potato, making the wastage the reason for the expense! We came up with lots of alternatives. Cocktailwise, I had a "Burt Bacharach" which, predictably took a very long time to make (caramel liqueur, a brown sugar lump and a couple of other shots of mystery alcohol) It wasn't as nice as I'd expected. And then I chose an Amaretto Sour, which was much better, simply because I love Amaretto. Both drinks were very strong indeed, especially on an empty stomach (we resisted the £3 crisps). At about 8.30 the lights were suddenly turned down, probably making many of the drinkers think that they had been struck blind by the strong drink, and also rendering the Cocktail Menu totally unreadable (it wasn't easy before, being in tiny, pale type which I had to hold up to the light). So we decided we'd had enough and went in search of food. By this time the place was heaving with young-ish people who had all dressed up to the nines to come out on a Friday night and spend a fortune on alcohol. As we left, a group of them stumbled blindly (or drunkenly, it was hard to tell) towards the seats we had vacated. They obviously needed a sit down, or at least they would when they got the bill.

This morning I took a brisk walk by the sea, which looked lovely, but was very cold. There on the beach, laughing hysterically, was a group of young blokes, one of whom was bollock-naked and just emerging from the sea. I thought it was probably a Stag Weekend thing. They were enjoying the experience, taking photographs of (I guess) the groom-to-be from all angles, and falling about laughing. He was taking it very well, and I thought he was very brave - there was a bitter north wind and I don't know if he even had a towel. When I walked back again 10 minutes later they were still there, still enjoying the joke, but I was relieved to see that Mr Swimmer was getting into some warm clothes. It would be terrible if some essential bits dropped off before the wedding.

I took my Gay Friend out to lunch today because it had been his Birthday in the week. It wasn't an entirely joyful occasion however, because he has had some bad news this week - a close family friend has died (at 92) leaving behind his twin sister. This dear old "couple" have always lived together, in the same house all their lives. They never married, and have always been inseparable. Sadly, it seems as if she will not survive him for long. She is not ill, simply heartbroken, and doesn't want to live without her twin. It is very sad, but I can quite understand that she doesn't want to go on alone.

This afternoon Daughter arrived, with my scabby little Grandson, and she has now gone out for the evening with some Brighton friends. All I can say is she is welcome. It's pouring with rain and snow is forecast again for tomorrow. I'm not moving...

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

April Already!

I really must apologise for being such a Bad Blogger for the last week or so. I've been taking time out to do all sorts of things which I couldn't do while my Foreign Student was around. I must say the freedom is blissful. Yesterday I went to London for the day, to see Sister, and I didn't have to get back to cook supper. We had such a lovely day, catching up, and Son also took time out of his working day to pop over to Hampstead to see us. That was great - he looks so well, brown and relaxed after his skiing holiday, and is also very cheerful about the new flat, so it was a treat for me. Sister is "holed up" in her flat because of the dreadful builders who are doing major works to the outside of the building - knocking off the render (and her phone connection), sweeping up the rubble (and trampling on her plants) and mixing up and applying new plaster, half of which seems to end up on the ground. They don't speak any English - at least they don't respond to spoken English, which is not necessarily the same thing. Anyway, this has been going on for three weeks now, and she has really had enough. They will probably be another three weeks at it, by which time her garden will be non-existent, so having visitors for the day was a little ray of sunshine. (She isn't getting any real sunshine through the windows because they are all covered with blue plastic to protect them while the work is going on!) I know just how she feels about the builders - I was only there for a few hours and I could cheerfully have clobbered the lot of them. There's constant noise, banging and drilling, and the occasional loud thump or crash when they drop something. They shout at each other in a completely foreign language which sounds vaguely Eastern European and, like the scaffolding, they are all around the outside of the building - there's no escaping them. Poor Sister has already had the telephone engineers out twice to re-connect her phone line. In spite of all this, we did manage to be both cheerful and positive, and I have promised to go back when the work is finished and help her to get the garden back in shape. It's the least I can do.

Sadly, I didn't get back in time to join in with our Pub Quiz team last night. By the time I'd caught the train at Victoria it was 8.30, so I didn't arrive home until 9.45pm. Then I sat at my computer and caught up with all my Blogging friends and their posts. The only trouble is, by the time I've read all of them, and commented too, I'm either too tired or it's too late to sit and write my own diary! I know it seems a bit counter-productive, but what's to do? I have to check up and see what all my "virtual" friends are up to, so I think it will have to be alternate days of Blogging and reading in future. At this rate I won't be going out anywhere, ever, for fear of falling behind. This evening I did meet a friend for cocktails and a quick supper. And tomorrow I'm off to see Daughter and Grandson for the day. Poor Grandson has had Chicken Pox since last Friday (you see, I haven't even had time to tell you that) and the poor little scrap has been smothered in Calamine Lotion and feeling rather itchy and scratchy. He phoned and left me a message on my answering machine today, which I thought was very grown-up. He just said "Nana, hello Nana", obviously in reply to my outgoing message. So I phoned him back when I came in, and we had a lovely conversation. Apparently my little soldier is very scabby, but I love him just the same. I can't wait for all those hugs and kisses tomorrow.