This is a typical day working in London, as mine panned out last Wednesday. Travelling into town on the underground… The guy on my left was playing with a DJ mixdeck app – loud tinny bass and backbeat pounding in my ear for 40 minutes. One woman sitting opposite was eating something I didn’t recognise, and the Amazonian-looking lady next to her suddenly got up, stomped up and down the aisle, screamed at her about making the train stink then jumped off at the next stop, still ranting. Oh… and the bloke on my right was reading the bible. Out loud. Two very enjoyable social media meetings followed: If you fancy having a 30 second video produced, my new business friend Iain can do it for £99, in amazing surroundings overlooking Battersea Power Station. I can tell you more about this if you like. Then I visited the hot menswear designer Archer Adams in his exclusive Marylebone boutique. I have no idea why the golfer decided not to buy the gorgeous purple velvet coat when he was there, it would have suited him perfectly.
Finishing by 3, I dropped by the Wallace Collection – a hidden gem of a museum and gallery set in a beautiful 18th century townhouse that once served as the Spanish Embassy. The array of French and Dutch 17th– and 18th-century paintings, ornate furniture and delicate porcelain is just lovely, if you like that sort of thing, which I do. And the teeny-tiny watercolour miniatures were exactly the right size to fit in my dolls house. They were small, my bag was big, the room attendants were daydreaming… Quickly changing the subject: I really liked the walls. Each gallery was covered in a brighter, richer, more vibrant patterned silk than the last – but you’re probably less interested in that than the Ruben angels, so I’ll move on. My day was bookended by a tube journey squashed between two men who both looked like they needed an introduction to soap, and smelled like a chicken truck.
Had a lovely surprise on Tuesday when I received a huge Fortnum and Mason gift box full of fine wines, a thank you gift from one of my happy clients. Sue was with me when it arrived. We’d taken the afternoon off to play guitar and sing loudly and were screeching out a completely tuneless version of ‘Don’t look back in anger’ when the F&M van pulled up. (No comment please Deedub…) Isn’t it exciting when you see a large unexpected box arriving up the garden path – I do love ripping off wrappings and ribbons, and I really don’t care if that sounds childish!
Sue wasn’t always musical you know… she’s a swimming teacher, self -taught on guitar a couple of years ago, and very good. But maybe you’ve seen her in The Kinks video for Come Dancing? A bit younger, but looking pretty much the same. It’s on my Pinterest music page. That was filmed at the Ilford Palais, where Gill and I spent most of our Wednesday school nights and a good number of Saturdays. I’m talking about the early 80s now, when we used our weekend job money to pay for the cloakroom, and ordered tap water with lemon until we could spot a couple of reasonable looking blokes to buy us Malibu and pineapple.
As Sue and I sang (loudly) on Tuesday, “Take me to the place that you go, where nobody knows if it’s night or day.” Or, if you don’t want to take me to your place, come to mine… follow me there: @WeekendWitch. Or tell me below…