Friday, January 21, 2005

I've barely had time to catch my breath this week let alone fill you in on my night out in Dullthorpe. It was great. I laughed a lot, I danced a bit, I didn't drink too much and I over-ordered at the Indian, as did everyone else. I could even have pulled if I'd wanted but I was having far too good a time.

So what has occupied my time so much that I haven't had chance to update you? Well! I've been mostly giving advice to handsome young men with concerns for their nether regions. It all started with Pixie Peter - he'd had a fab weekend with his new Caledonian Lady Love and was slightly concerned when a couple of days later he developed worrying symptoms which culminated in severe discomfort when visiting the toilet. I immediately signposted him to the GP clinic for anti-biotics with a short lecture on safe sex ( tongue in cheek the whole time).

I was very relieved to hear that it was nothing more serious than................................gallstones!

Gallstones! A 30 year old with gallstones?!! Have you ever heard the like - I almost wished it had been the Clap for his sake! - far cooler!

Then yesterday afternoon, I'm sitting minding my own business in my office when another friend turns up seeking warmth and sustenance in between appointments. I'd normally expect an in-depth discussion on the finer points of File Management, in fact I'd prefer it. I have absolutely no idea what led him to insist on revealing the minutiae of the 2 occasions that a leading condom manufacturer let him down. Do I look like Dr Ruth all of a sudden?

Maybe it's this flipping irritating dose of celibacy that I've been suffering from for the last few years that makes them feel safe enough to discuss these things with me - I must have finally become asexual. Let's hope my date on Sunday might just have a cure.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

The main aims of my week have been achieved. I got to the end of it. It seemed to go on forever - I've had 2 cancelled dates, one of my secretaries has had a bereavement, and it all seems a bit flat but then that is just what January is there for - and also promulgates my theory that Capricorns and Aquarians are boring and unadventurous because they are born at the precise time that the rest of us hibernate - they lack stimulation from birth.

I was hoping to escape having to go out tomorrow night - an evening in my local town has absolutely no appeal - most of the men are dull and severely undereducated and those that aren't are likely to be ex-boyfriends. I could have got away with it, having spent virtually the entire time since I arrived home from work on the phone to Marko. No sooner had I hung up for a necessary toilet stop, phone rings - and Diane cajoles me into a night out - I have reservations, but I'm going. The rugby parents are top and I love spending time with them. They even manage to make me forget that I'm the only single one among them ( Tony doesn't count, he's one on his own) but I now have an 18 year old looking out for men for me. Not sure that is a good thing.

Monday, January 10, 2005

My ultimate hero of all time is Alexander The Great. Bush could learn so much from him. If anyone could sort out the Middle East problems once and for all, it would be the Golden One. I've read a lot about him, all fascinating and fortunate as if my first introduction to this incredible figure was Oliver Stone's interminable epic, I doubt I'd bother learning more.

It's beautifully shot, but there's not a lot else going for it. Clitus and Craterus are particularly pleasant on the eye. Young Farrell spends too much time looking into middle distance and getting all dreamy and gooey-eyed at Hephaestion ( who I don't think was terribly well cast - I always imagined him much darker and sexier - like that Australian guy who played Hector in Troy). The SFX are awesome - the bit where he slices through an elephant's trunk was probably unnecessary.

Anyway, I ate too much and struggled to keep awake. I'm still having trouble with that so I think I'm going to turn in. I'm facing my first full week at work since mid December and I'm not relishing the thought.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

I feel I might have held back a bit about my feelings and fears before I boarded that plane to France on New Year's Eve. I'd been really quite choked as I left the house, set the alarm and waved good-bye for what could have been the last time to my temporary home for the last 7 years.

Tamara was the Hostess with the Mostest when I arrived just outside Cambridge - tasty risotto, foreign wines and liquers, and the best massage I have had in ages - what started as a back rub soon transmogrified into the best all-over massage I have ever had - wish she was my Mum ( nb: if my Mum ever tried anything similar it would be much more scary and feel medicinal rather than relaxing).

I was very nervous as I drove to the airport - and once I got there, I was conscious of my anonymity - I couldn't speak to anyone - how do you bring up in conversation that you are about to fly out to meet a total stranger/potential serial killer and not look like a complete saddo - so my thoughts did turn to doing Star Jumps in the middle of the terminal - that would be something memorable for CrimeWatch if worst came to worst! And there was always the possibility of £250 from Jeremy Beadle or that fat bird from Emmerdale if I survived.

I'm glad to report that my decision not to exercise at Stansted airport proved a good one.

I was in court this morning. Not an unusual experience for me - it was a bit odd recognizing not only half the solicitors wandering about the place, the Court Usher, 1 of the magistrates, 2 witnesses in another trial and most of the defendants ( I am so glad I moved away from Legal Help work) but actually being one of the parties is so much more nerve-wracking than being there professionally. I bottled at last minute and rang a mate to represent me.

He did a good job - guided by me of course - and I came away having given the impression to Stephen and the mags that I was philanthropic and utterly wonderful - so much so, that Syephen has started to form a One-Man-Fan Club. He's toasting his Cider to me as we speak.

Friday, January 07, 2005

My stomach is doing somersaults. I'm in court in the morning, not something that normally bothers me, but then I'm usually there representing some other poor schmuck, not on my own behalf.

Tomorrow I have to come face to face with Stephen and his bid to wriggle out of his maintenance arrears and get any future payments wiped out. He rather amusingly suggested to me on the phone that his intention was to then pay me lump sums directly. Ha! In 14 years he's never once made a regular payment (and we're not talking vast amounts) or indeed made any payments without having first been hauled before the court and threatened with prison. I suspect his family have bailed him out in the past, but as he's now burnt his bridges with them, he's stook in a corner and terrified that he's going to jail. I don't know why he's worrying, even the lifers wouldn't find him attractive.

I won't see him sent down, of course, and chances are the arrears will be remitted and the order reduced in his favour, but I just feel I need to make some sort of stand on Jack's behalf. I had asked my former boss to represent me and he'd agreed but when I popped to see him on Tuesday to make sure he was still ok with that, he informed me he'd double-booked and as the other client was paying and treating him to an all-expenses-paid day out in London, he won.

I decided I'd do it myself, it's not like I'm a stranger to the courtroom or anything, but then I started to get really anxious about it as this afternoon wore on and I made a few calls to friends in the trade, most of whom were out til Monday. I eventually got through to a lovely chap who I deal with from time to time and he's agreed to hold my hand if necessary. So now I've filled out my Statement of Means (how is it on paper I appear to have plenty to live on, but there's always more month left at the end of the money?) and shall be going home to iron my most frugal looking outfit and hope the magistrates don't recognize Gucci at 20 paces.

If there was ever a night that I could really do with a sherry to steady my nerves, it's now, but that would spell disaster - and I can hardly take the moral high ground if my eyes are redder than Stephen's.

With my luck the court will take one look at me and order me to maintain him. Now that would be truly awful!

I'm going home now. I've cleared my desk just in case I am so traumatised from tomorrow's hearing that I have no option but to dash home and start the weekend early.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

First day back at work was typical - phone calls,coffee, chin wags ( not many and not long given the volume of post - which idiot was working? I'll talk to their Boss) . My lovely new Boss came and blew me a kiss across my busy desk - thank the Lord I was talking to an estate agent and not surfing for men (nb: never done in work hours)

I only managed 4 tapes today, the phone was so manic, but I did reassure myself that I was busier than most of my colleagues, so if the ebb afffects us, I'll be on reasonably high ground.

Talking of which, I watched the news: this tsunami has really affected me. I was already quite moved having visited Knossos and Santorini - and that happened over 2000 years ago! I really want to help - and not just with cash although I am doing my bit there - I'm young, fit and reasonably resolute - I could almost join the TAs just to make a small dint in the surface of suffering. I want to help practically - it has to be more rewarding than the National Trust Working Holiday that I've just booked muself on.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Happy New Year! I survived the Deauville Strangler who turned out to be a quiet, thoughtful chap who got us an upgrade on our already sumptuous room and took me on a whistle-stop tour of Northern France.He wasn't much of a dancer so I contented myself with a jolly fat French businessman who CeRoced me to within an inch of my stillettos.

We had a walk along the beach - Omaha. We visited some war graves and we saw some Troglodyte dwellings. My favourite bit was seeing all the mistletoe which has colonised most of the trees between Normandy and the Loire valley. There was no kissing under it though.

New Year's Eve had to be one of the finest dinners I've ever attended. The food was sublime, the entertainment interesting and the champagne unlimited. Fabulous!

We did very little else all weekend other than indulge in a number of DVDs and partake of the local vin.

I had a very uncomfortable journey back to the car from the terminal. I had taken pull-in tights with me - you know the ones, reinforced in all the right places. Well they tend to have a mind of their own and often start to roll down - by the time I reached my car - after dragging my larger-than-necessary suitcase along numerous corridors, past sleepy immigration, and a number of chauffeurs who actually looked alright, flagged down a bus just as it was about to leave, and even had a conversation with an Irish guy who had mistaken my case for his, the tights were just about keeping up with my mid-thigh! I must have looked like a Chinese Pearl Diver who had been swaddled from birth. I toyed with the idea of hoisting them up as I sandwiched myself between my car and the next - but then thought about CCTV .

I jumped in, turned on the engine and whipped those tights off so quick it would have brought tears to Old Deauville Daddy's eyes if he'd have seen it - all that money spent and only now does she show dexterity in any interesting department!

Jack is responding appreciatively to my return - I've had hugs and no demands for money yet - must have something to do with having waved at his girlfriend last night. She thinks I'm nice, apparently.

I'm just really quite pleased to be alive - the concerns of my friends did not go unmarked - and a bit humbled at the big deal that I made about it - I'm just a normal, quiet girl, wanting a normal quiet life. I lack any form of excitement other than the weekly Sunday Crossword - so I look for evermore exotic things to do. Work will do me just fine for now.