It’s been a whirlwind couple of weeks and my apologies (again!) to those of you who emailed asking where last week’s blog was. I just didn’t write it. It’s only the second time in four years, so I think that’s acceptable. My birthday weekend was amazing and waking up on the Monday morning I liked the idea of working even less than the thought of facing another fruit-filled Pimms…
Partying aside, the fortnight was full of excitement, and I did share most of it on social media. It began with the Stroke Association’s London Awards on the Monday. When they asked for inspirational nominees, Oli was a natural choice! He received his certificate from weathergirl Sian Lloyd, a lovely lady who laughed with me on stage at my lack of skincare regime and shared the secrets of her favourite cake shops.
Receiving my own certificate was an honour that I feel is undeserved but, I have to admit, the Stroke Association had written some very lovely things about my work. My sincere thanks to the team that found my work worthy of an award. The work I do surrounding child stroke is bittersweet – I’m glad to help other parents find comfort in their terror and confusion, but – obviously – we’d all prefer to never have been thrown into that awful situation. Anyway, that Monday was a lovely start to my celebrations.
The working week ended with a night out with my favourite accountants. At Kanaloa, an extremely lively cocktail bar near Chancery Lane we were adorned with paper flowers then taught the shaking and shimmying techniques for a variety of delicious drinks that didn’t really seem alcoholic at the time, but provided my first proper hangover the following morning.
I guess it may have been naïve to imagine I could get to this age without ever experiencing a banging alcohol-fuelled headache… Yes, I got drunk. I stand here in the spirit of full disclosure and admit it. So I attended my own birthday party with a hangover, but that didn’t detract from the fun.
More Pimms followed at Karen’s party on Sunday, after a family lunch that included more wine. Then a pre-theatre champagne dinner at The Savoy on Tuesday… then a pink champagne afternoon tea with Debra to close the week. You can see why not much social media work got done… With all those beverages I barely had time for chooclate!!
This final deliciousness followed a wander around the Tate, making the most of my recently-acquired membership. As a teenager I could frequently be found in the Pre-Raphaelite gallery, so it was lovely to explore the vast halls with a friend who’d never been before. I used to think that this wonderous enclosure, once the site of a penitentiary housing female convicts on their way to Australia, was my spiritual home. I don’t think that now, of course, but a green tea in the members’ room does leave me feeling calm and grounded.
I’ve been told that 50 is the new 25. We’ll see… it’s certainly the time to tackle everything on my list that I’ve dreamed of doing but couldn’t afford/couldn’t be bothered/couldn’t be brave enough – starting with a cross-country motorbike ride. Well, no point keeping a nice leather jacket purely for fashion reasons, right?!
This is my birth song, number one on the day I made my first appearance, scarily half a century ago. In a world where everything has changed, really not much has changed… The telephone is ringin,’ I say, “Hi, it’s me, who is it there on the line?” A voice says, “Hi, hello, how are you?” Well, I guess I’m doin’ fine. It’s three a.m., there’s too much noise; don’t you people ever wanna go to bed? ‘Cause you feel so good, do you have to drive me out of my head? (Sing it together now…) I said, “Hey, you, get off of my cloud! Hey, you, get off of my cloud!!”
I’m as happy to share my cloud as I am my pink champagne. Still, I’m off the cloud and back on dry land now – in fact, I’m right here: @WeekendWitch.