Where have I been? What have I been doing to keep me away from my blog? Was it something truly magnificent and thrilling to justify so long an absence?
In short, no. I was in London on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and as I tend to get home late, cram dinner down and lie exhausted on the sofa, watching undemanding TV till bedtime, I tend not to blog on the days I'm in town.
Thursday was an extra specially late night home, as we had our work Christmas lunch. We went to the Thai restaurant just off Trafalgar Square, in Norway House (I think) and had a damn fine meal. Very traditional, Thai food. Heh. I shared the vegetarian menu with my vegan colleague, and it was lovely.
Afterwards we went to the Ship and Shovel and did a quiz, mostly about work, which meant I was able to add very little in terms of real value, but I did draw beautiful stars all over the answer sheet, which hopefully earned us some credit.
All this excitement meant I caught a later train than usual, and joy of joys, it was pretty empty as it left Waterloo. Yay. Loads of spare seats, lots of leg room.
But no...wait...what's this? We stop at Clapham and hordes of small children pile aboard. Arse!
There were at least 400 of them in my carriage. They made enough noise for that many anyway. The responsible adults with them sat down at one end of the carriage, and the children, little girls aged from about 5 to 12 dispersed themselves all over the place. They started off well enough, but within 15 minutes were shrieking, whispering loudly and having a fake hair-pulling fight. The air was rapidly filled with high-pitched machine-gun giggling, loud weeping and fragments of snacks*.
Marvellous. I turned up my iPod and tried to pretend I was on a beach somewhere.
Arrived at my station at about 8pm-ish, and took great delight in getting off the train first so I could flee the car park before all the small children did (yes, they got off at my stop).
Overheard one of the responsible adults say to one of the shrieking moppets, who was carrying a huge toy pony/zebra thing under her arm, "Oh, we'll have to phone daddy and tell him we're bringing home another pony!" I'd like to think they were talking about toys, but I think not.
Went straight from there to a party in the village, which was lovely, but I was so tired I only stayed for an hour or so. What a lightweight. Mind you, getting up at 6am three days in a row is knackering. I am still walking at least one of the journeys between Waterloo and Victoria each day, which is a good 30 minute walk. So being a bit tired is to be expected.
We have been preparing a variety of meat-related foodstuffs for the meatfest tonight. But to ensure all the food groups are represented, I have made a chocolate cake for pudding.
Other news: Looks like father in law WithaY will be moving into the care home in the next village before Christmas, which is marvellous news. Will save us a huge amount of driving, to start with.
We've put our Christmas lights up in the front garden and so far West Wiltshire still has electricity, so that's encouraging.
I'm off work now till January the 5th. The longest break I've had from work (not counting 3 weeks when I had bronchitis) since last Christmas. And lord, I feel like I need it.
*Seemed to be fig roll biscuits from where I was sitting. Nice and sticky on the table tops.