Friday, 31 March 2017

Serves Me Right , I Fear ...

Train travel must be familiar enough not to need a special section in etiquette guides , surely ? You know , the usual things ; give up your seat to the obviously pregnant or ancient , don't use your 'phone in the Silent carriages , take your crap home with you  ... that sort of thing . Dutch trains have screens in every compartment with travel information and little timely reminders about responsible behaviour .

The young chap taking up a double seat the other day can't have read them lately .
"Is this seat free ?" I ask idiotically , gesturing to the overnight bag , laptop case , sandwich box , anorak and cuddly blanket piled up next to him . He sighed theatrically , put the film on Pause and said ,
 "I can make room for you " whereupon everyone nearby swivelled round to see just how much room I 'd need ....

 So it goes without saying that I'll not be rushing to the local beauty salon that's advertising their grand reopening tonight with a Pampering Evening with Bubbles and Bites .
 Probably not for the likes of me ... might be a nibble too far

Monday, 20 March 2017

Hoovered Up Last Week

Odds and ends ...

According to a Daily Telegraph quiz on Friday , I'm only a Plastic Paddy . My various , rather distant Irish ancestors would be mortified , but unsurprised ; I haven't been there for over forty years . Never mind , one of my cousins is called Patrick Joseph Mary , and you can't get much more Irish than that ... I'll have to put it on my application for a passport if Brexit threatens ...

A sentence from a Guardian book review last week caught my eye , "Many Britons can date their childhood to the suffix their subconscious applies to the word "Raleigh", be it Roadster , Chopper or Burner ." That the suffix that I came up with was Walter says it all , really ...

The Den Haag  exhibition of clothes Givenchy had designed for Audrey Hepburn was beautiful ... columns of black satin with only giant pearls or a swirl of tulle for the evening  , hot pink or mustard coats with tiny pill box hats , beautiful embroidery ... but the most striking gallery was dedicated to her work with Unicef . The photos of her with refugee children showed her at her best , glowing and alive in capri pants and simple cotton shirts with three toddlers draped round her neck . In another corner there was one of her handwritten recipes for pasta reproduced with her wooden spoon  ,  a photo of her on a gigantic sofa with her cat and another of both the designer and herself buttoned up in his tweed coat in the snow . Not just Holly Golightly but someone you'd like to have known .

The three of us were fading away with hunger by this stage so repaired to the museum cafe  for lunch . Was unable to resist one of the weird pink rolls , though filled with cheese rather than smoked mackerel . Had to ask ... why's it this colour ?  Made with wholemeal flour and beetroot juice , apparently  . Which just leaves the question why ? Another desperate attempt to make us all eat our  Five A Day , perhaps . In case your baker produces beetroot bread  , be warned . It just makes the bread slightly sweet and heavier .

And this week ?  Blood oranges , "The Trouble With Goats And Sheep" by Joanna Cannon on audio , yet more rain and the poop test . Lots to look forward to ...

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Wash And Brush Up x 2

One does want to look one's best , which is why both I and my bike were tidied up this week .
Predictably the whole thing worked better on the bike .  Only four months old , her after sales check involved her saddle bags being hoovered , tyres pumped up , chain oiled and being lightly polished with a chamois cloth . She gleams .

 I , on the other hand , having gone to the hairdresser rather than the bike shop , have only had a haircut  . I have polished my shoes , though , so there's a slight improvement overall even if I don't exactly dazzle .

Since Friend , YD and I are hoping to see the Hubert De Givenchy exhibition To Audrey With Love in Den Haag this weekend , I might even re-attach the top button on my coat . Still , Friend and YD will look their usual elegant selves and I'll be the Margaret Rutherford figure bringing up the rear . Perhaps if I hoover my capacious handbag and check for the odd fluffy peppermint ....  ?