Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Girls' Day Out

Had a fab day out with Romy last week: went to Egham on the train and Romy met me in a rather snazzy sports car which was a recent purchase. Dashed back to Romy's cute cottage before leaping back in the car again to partake of a very elegant coffee and fabulous cookie at a wonderful country house hotel called Great Fosters. This reminded me of some of the places we stayed in when working, and is a fabulous Tudor mansion with a fascinating history of visits and events put on for Royalty, Hollywood Royalty, etc. Superb place. We then sallied forth to Buratta's for lunch, where we both purchased a few items. Fortunately I had to come back on the train which prevented any further or larger purchases. Great lunch of bangers and mash, after which we visited a modern hotel by the river which promised to be a great place in the summer with a riverside terrace and huge picture windows. Then we dashed off to Egham and visited a couple of charity shops. I found rather a pretty little bag, a black and white top and a black jacket. As we arrived back at the car park, totally laden, Romy suddently realised the car keys were missing. Fortunately she had left them in the loo at Tesco, so all was well. I am a bit dim about cars and just saw the name 'Boxster' on the back. Apparently it is a rather good Porsche - so used to seeing red Porsches that this rather subtle version did not ring a bell with me. Dorothy tells me it is a very good car. I have to say the acceleration was noticeably good. I could get used to this kind of thing. That was Friday and on Saturday went to St. Pancras with Luke's Drink & Draw. Francesca and I did a little drawing in a station cafe, before the others met to go off to find a Pret. We were far too cold and after purchasing a couple of cheap sketchbooks in Paperchase, we went home. Madeleine came round for lunch on Sunday. We had a roast chicken with roast potatoes and roast vegetables supplemented by some Brussels sprouts. For pud we had a giant strawberry with banana cake and millionaire's shortcake ice cream from Marks. Nicos popped in for a while in the afternoon. He seems to spend his time travelling all over the place and plans to drive down to Plymouth for Easter weekend with four other guys. We pointed out that they might have difficulty finding somewhere to stay but he did not seem worried. A call from Dorothy revealed a rather problematic tax debt, so I am trying to find a way of making a lot of money quickly. Tricky. If I could sell the flat in Barcelona that might solve the problem, but I can't imagine finding a buyer. Oh well. The registration for the Urban Sketchers symposium in Barcelona started at 1pm yesterday, with the expected problems of a hopeless booking procedure. This was eventually sorted out and I managed to pay for an earlybird booking which cost just under £240. A couple of hours later, booking closed due to an unexpected demand for tickets. Not really surprising when you think that Urban Sketchers are all over the world, and increasing all the time, and I had been horrified to discover there were only 120 places. At least I managed to get mine, which is just as well, having booked flights etc. Yesterday I was feeling a bit ill with a nasty dry cough which developed into a vile cough and headache with fever last night. My throat had the familiar feeling of being full of razor blades and my chest crackled horribly all night. Dear me. I also had a very tiresome enquiry for my Airbnb room from someone who pestered me with 13 emails. Finally I withdrew my approval for her to stay as I decided she had been so difficult already that I would be totally against her by the time she arrived, and she wanted to book for a whole month. It is one thing having really nice people like my current guest staying for a month, but if I do have someone difficult I would prefer it to be only for a few days. Or not at all.

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