Tuesday, 12 June 2012

A long reign and a wet weekend...

London two weeks ago...

New York feels like forever ago. We arrived back dazzled by the rare London sunshine and not even two and a half hours of re-root canal the day we landed could diminish the warm, soul polishing embrace of the sun. I don’t really want to relieve my dental disaster so I won’t, suffice to say that I feel unwittingly dragged into adulthood for having been mature and (mostly) brave throughout the whole ordeal. Jetlag and temazepan may have helped.

We had an – god, do you know, I was about to write “an unseasonably beautiful four days” but then realised that actually, it’s freaking June and four beautiful days should be seasonably, reasonably expected. But then this is London. And this, currently, is London Summer:

This afternoon, crossing Vauxhall Bridge. Normally
you would be able to see the London Eye from here
Anyway, we had a lovely four days back in London before returning to work, which we spent mostly with Lovely Boy’s brother and his kids, who were at the start of a holiday through Europe. Lucky for them. We took them for a gourmet lunch at Borough Market before spending the afternoon drinking Pimms (lemonade for those without the necessary id….) in the wildflower garden atop the Southbank Centre. It was so delightful.

Preparing for the Jubilee. Pre-appalling weather.
Fiona Banner's boat atop the
Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank
And then it was work for a week (busy, mental, stressful, changes ahoy) before another four days off to play in honour of the Queens Jubilee. I have to confess to be totally fascinated by the royals – not fascinated enough to brave 70,000 on Pall Mall for a fleeting glimpse of them and certainly not fascinated enough to spend seven hours on the side of the Thames, wedged in a crowd and getting totally drenched. But you know, fascinated. As I’m sure every man and his corgi already knows, in the greatest of British traditions, it rained. ALL weekend.

The neighbours getting their Jubilee on
Lovely Boy and I spent most of it on the sofa watching the pomp and pageantry on the television. Though on Saturday, when it was only mildly miserable, we went for an amble along the river towards Putney, where boats were beginning to muster for Sunday’s flotilla and snooped in a neighbourly sort of fashion on all the street parties going on around us.

Quite a bit of bedraggled bunting is still about the streets even now and all the flags throughout central London hang limply – like depressed wet washing. It’s a bit tragic really and only makes me wonder what kind of weather we can expect for the “Summer” Olympics next month. It would be churlish to say I hope it rains, yes?

A moment of forlorn homesickness when I spotted
this on a bench along the river near Putney

The long weekend wasn’t a total bust though. On Sunday Lovely Boy recreated Clinton St Bakery pancakes – DELICIOUS – and on Tuesday I moseyed down to Crystal Palace with a work colleague for a swim. I can’t remember the last time I swam laps in a 50m pool, and it was pre-Easter chest infection that I so much as gazed at my swimmers so it was quite the return but I loved it. Loved feeling totally pooped at the end, loved being able to just swim, and loved the company actually – because let’s be honest, sometimes swimming laps is fucking boring.  

A three day working week can only be sweet (and swift) and the weekend just gone was intermittently windy and wet but on Saturday Tori took me for some mani pedi pampering as an early birthday present. Shiny new nails and lunch at Hix in Selfridges to follow before some window licking on the third floor. It was the ideal girly day.

Lovely Boy's Clinton St tribute. #impressive
And today, for a wet, cold Monday, wasn’t actually bad. There’s a lot of things on the work horizon, most of them busy-making, but a constructive, exciting meeting first thing has given me a renewed sense of direction about work and my role and opportunities to really learn. There’s also a huge new professional development that I’m reluctant to talk about lest it disappear again but once I know for certain I’ll be shouting modestly from the rooftops about it. So stay tuned for that news broadcast.

Spotted on the corner of New Oxford and Museum Sts on Saturday
In the meantime, I have 32 to prepare for. I’ve stopped looking for grey hairs in case it becomes some sort of self-fulfilling prophesy and am preparing myself, Zen-like, for a philosophical sort of birthday. I don’t care much for the even numbers so this year is going to be mostly about consolidation. Dead sexy I know but this is what getting old does to you.

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