Thursday, 26 November 2009

Dinner with the ministers

Tonight I am sharing a dining table with Ed Balls, Dawn Primarolo and our managing director. It is the managing director who is causing me most concern.

In other news, the lift is still broken.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Lift palaver

I am pregnant. I work on the sixth floor. The lift has been broken for the last three days. But never fear, we have an antiquated two-door system postroom lift that I can use.

But wait, what's this? The lift doesn't work when someone leaves the door open on another floor you say? You'd think then that anyone using it would be careful to shut the door properly.

What they definitely wouldn't do is leave it open ON PURPOSE for their own convenience so that they could do something or other and the lift would be there waiting for them when they came back. And then, when I phoned my colleague to get her to see where the lift was stuck and Lift Woman had to come down again to get me, to come back up to the sixth floor with me and tell me not to shut the door becasue she wanted to do it again!

Rant over.

PS Don't ask me why Lift Woman had to come down in the lift to get me then go back up again. I guess she just wanted to make sure the lift was never out of her sight.

Monday, 16 November 2009

A Bit of Earth

A Bit of Earth A Bit of Earth by Rebecca Smith

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
When a book is called A Bit of Earth and the main character has the surname Misselthwaite (spelling?) it is obviously trying to link itself to The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett (the hall is called Misselthwaite and there is a chapter called A Bit of Earth, as that is what Mary asks her uncle for). So I was expecting a book about the healing power of nature, which isn't really what this is about. There is less about the garden than I thought there would be.

But although there are obvious similarities with Secret Garden (a man whose wife dies (not in a garden) neglects his son) I preferred the grand strokes of the children's book to the quietness of this book. It was OK. I just wasn't that enthralled. I didn't like Guy, I thought his treatment of his son was worse than the book seemed to suggest (perhaps because I have a little boy).

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Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Jamie's Italian

We went to Jamie's Italian in Canary Wharf for lunch at the weekend. We were the ones hanging about outside at 11.45am waiting for it to open so we could keep HackneyChild's energy levels up. It is fun and child-friendly, with crayons and an impromtu (how do you even spell that?) display of men on a cherry picker reparing some lights downstairs, which impressed HackneyChild, although I don't think the restaurant arranged it for us.

The gimmick of putting the children's menu in a 3D viewfinder is cute but stupid, there are just pictures of the food with no description or price.

I didn't realise until we got there that of course HackneyChild's name chimes with the restaurant name. Every time I called to him I felt like either a mad Jamie Oliver freak fan who had named their child after him or a mad mum who insists on dining at restaurants named after their child.

Monday, 9 November 2009

Vicky park fireworks/ Tower Hamlets hates the Welsh shock

We went to the Victoria Park fireworks with HackneyChild. I probably wouldn't have done off my own bat as he's only two and I well remember whinging constantly through a Rugby Club firework display when I was four about how I couldn't see, there were too many people and it was much better when we had fireworks in the garden. But I was happy to go when friends invited us, as I love the fireworks myself.

Didn't see loads of them as HackneyChild freaked out at first and required moving out of the crowd and cossetting while they were going on. However he now claims on a daily basis that he "liked the fireworks" so that's good. I liked how there were hearts, and stars inside circles. And that it was free. But the organisers could probably do with not having a massive funfair blocking the exit, requiring a huge crowd to filter though carousels and things before they can get out.

I was also entertained when asked to fill in a questionnaire on the way out. It seems Tower Hamlets ( I suspect it's them not Hackney) are keen to make sure their fireworks are attracting a diverse audience both in ethnicity and sexuality, judging by the questions. Bless. I can just imagine them going "Our fireworks aren't attracting enough gay people! How can we make our fireworks more gay-friendly?!" Also, there were boxes to tick for English, Scottish ("We are not attracting enough Scots! How can we make our fireworks more Scottish?!") and Irish (does this include Northern Ireland?) but not Welsh, which seems a bit unfair.