26 December 2014

I was so on edge about the prospect of having to work this morning when I went to bed last night, I ended up dreaming about the job I would wake up to do. It wasn’t a pleasant dream. Colleagues familiar only by name presented themselves with the faces of the Dream Catchers from last night’s Doctor Who, all of them making use of every opportunity to remind me I had to be up by 9.25am, making sure I switched off all the alarms I’d set for 9.30am so as to avoid waking Simon. As it turned out, I woke up at 8.55am having had an incredibly restless night’s sleep.

I could have stayed longer in bed, but I reckoned that the work I had to do could be made more palatable if I had a coffee first. And to have a coffee first, I’d need to set up the coffee machine I’d unwrapped first. A relatively straightforward process to set up and although noisy when it was grinding beans, it didn’t wake up Simon or our guest Adrian staying in the room above the kitchen. So good was the taste of the coffee that I opted for a second cup immediately after I’d downed the first. Adrian emerged around about half an hour later. Would he like a coffee? He said. I had one with him. When the work finally arrived an hour and a half later than originally scheduled, I reckoned I’d go for a fourth cup of coffee. They were so easy to make after all. Little wonder I felt so rotten a couple of hours later when the caffeine buzz began to wear off.

Although later than planned, the work wasn’t that big a deal. As hoped, half an hour all tolled. Pleased about that. The rest of the holiday can now get underway (with the exception of the blog post I need to draft tomorrow before we go away to Southwold). Dozed for an hour or so around lunchtime and then made my way back downstairs to the lounge with the Graham Norton biography I got yesterday.

Norton’s book is an incredibly easy read. I find its apparent simplicity beguiling. He lays mostly everything bare. At least it seems that way. Men, dogs, Ireland, Work and Booze. The chapter headings read like revision notes. He writes like he talks. I’ve read three-quarters of it already. It’s like listening to his radio show. He has an easy charm and an infectious sense of self-deprecation. Puts me in the mind of the three occasions he and I have spoken: small-talk in his production offices close to the Southbank, outside the Broadcast Centre in White City and once on a random bike ride through St Catharine’s Dock where he was walking his dogs. Always charming and always bizarrely (to me at least) present in the moment.

Making another lasagne tomorrow for Sunday’s late-lunch/early supper with Mum and Dad. “Well, I’m making tea,” says my Mum on the phone to me yesterday, “because I know you’ll never be able to get there and complete a meal in the space of an hour before we arrive.” Now I realise where I get my sense of ambition from. When someone says “you’ll never do that”, invariably I’ll set out to prove them wrong. So tomorrow we repeat the Tom Kerridge’s lasagne and I – somehow – get a blog draft written. Fingers crossed.

After the intensity of yesterday, today has been the best kind of relief. Quiet, cosy and intimate. I know I would hate to be alone. But I do love it when its just the two of us.

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