* They help shortlist a big list and saves time and energy
* They looks purdy
* I was going to bullet point this entry but in the end, it turned out to be a short excerpt from War and Peace.
From the moment I left home last Tues to the day I got back (yest) a ton of things happened. 99% of the stuff that did happen was lovely. There were no plans of sorts, just a suck it and see type of scenario. I can only but semi bullet the events and I would hate to not catalogue them because I don't want to forget. I see this blog as a blessing as being my online, digital scrapbook. I just clicked back to this time last year and it was an emotional time for belle and I. How weird that yesterday echoed similar feelings.
I tootled down to Traci's house in Thrapston by car. Its a 2.5 hour journey and I listened to Coldplay all the way there. I was that engrossed I ended up in Graffam Water which was waaaaay past where I needed to turn off. But I got to her house eventch and we picked up where we left off. Because that's what friends do. And I love her so much because she is so energetic and fun. But I worry about her because she works so hard and absolutely does not get the recognition she deserves. I feel that one day she will :)
All good things.........................
I caught the train from Kettering to Landan Tarn. I literally got to the station with moments to spare. As I went to pay for my tickets we heard an announcement over the tannoy to explain that my train was running 29 minutes late. Mmmm, what a shocker! So Traci and I decided to take it easy to my platform. And we looked over at my platform and there was a train sat right there. And it was my train. Because East Midlands Trains announcers are great fat liars, it seems. So we ran like hell fire up the stairs, over the bridge and down the stairs. But it all felt like slow motion and I could feel myself shouting "nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo" (like they do in movies in really really really slow motion). My arm reached out to touch the train because it was right there. It had to wait for me. I needed that train. B*asts. The doors closed just as I approached it and the sniggering guard almost got a thump on the nose for his piggerness.
My legs were like jelly and I knew that my train ticket was invalid now because that train was reserved for my ass. What I had to do was pray that the next train would be conductor free and that i could snag a free ride, in effect.
And it was. . How I prayed to the lord for that nugget of good luckness.
And the best thing was I talked to this amazing woman all the way to St Pancras.
I hate to boast but I always meet the best people on a train.
I love to talk and share views and opinions with complete strangers.
It turns out she is a yoga therapist en route to San Francisco and who lives in a converted factory - all open plan and super duper. I just wanted to be her - she was that fantastic.
St Pancras is a bit special.
All new and shiny and full of the most fabulous boutiques and shops.
But I couldn't stay.
I had to head to my fake fabulous hotel which stood tall and proud in one of the most poshest parts of London.
Eaton Gate stands between Sloane square and Eaton Park (quite very near Buck house).
I hailed a cab from Sloane Square tube and asked him to wizz me to my fake fabulous hotel. He asked if I was sure and I was like "yes, for I am important and in London". Everyone knows that when you are in London you are important.
There is an air of mystery about oneself when one is in London.
And I was wearing a suit jacket so therefore I could have been an executive from Coutts Bank or even a super model (obviously one that wears a fat suit to hide her thin frame).
But he had the last laugh as I was in the taxi for approximately 3 seconds because our fake fabulous hotel was literally 3 seconds from Sloane Square.
No matter, I chucked him a tip for being the usual cheeky chappy taxi driver whom I did not get to ask if he had been busy or indeed near the end of his shift. And whenever I am in London and of course being important, I like to ask if the taxi driver uses the term "Cor Lummy". But that joke is between my sister and I. Although to be fair one taxi driver once said, in response to that "Ere, do you think my name is Dick Van Dyke?". Oh, how my sister and I laughed for days.
So I haul my luggage up the fake fabulous hotel steps and ring the bell. A polish girl answers the door and says "Yeeeeeeeeeeeees".
Holy crap, is this really a fake fabulous hotel or the hammer house of horrors?
I explained I was booked in and she allowed me to enter. I had to fill in forms and then she took me up a rickety lift from the golden ages to my room on the top floor. Oh how I was dying to have a shower and cup of tea on my arrival. But Hmmm, no kettle and no electricity. Well, there was a Tv but even that was attached to a dymo machine and 15 rats were running on a miniature conveyor belt to help fire it up. One had the feeling one was not important anymore but cinder-freakin-ella.
Note our decadent polystyrene ceiling tiles complete with stains and dust? Try not to envy my grey (once white) canopy above the bed and in the reflection of my mirrored wardrobe doors, a quaint little picture of a dufex based swiss cottage on the side of a mountain.
Clare and I loved the random pieces of wood strewn about the room and bathroom.
I was impressed with the stain effect wall paper they had. But you have to laugh, our fake fabulous hotel was just hilarious!
The room was a trifle stifled so I whipped off my skirt to aerate before I took a little lie down on the bed. I decided to open the window which was knee high and thought "hmmm, I'm on the top floor, nobody is going to notice me opening a window in just my t shirt and grundies".
Our fake fabulous hotel was right opposite probably the most poshest private school in the entire world and quite possibly one of those poor kids got to see my hideous behind. Charming thought, really. So anyway, I took a little lay on the bed and rang Clare who actually was already there and right next door. And she presents me with a lovely card and some delish wrapping paper from Paperchase. I know you know how much that means to me. Paperchase sell the best wrapping paper of which I covet and adore from a distance.
We chatted and then got ready for the Lanesborough Afternoon Tea date we had. We took a taxi to be met with men in grey top hats and tails who escorted us out of our hackney into the poshest hotel ever. Apparently its the only hotel that Madonna uses but then why would she, she lives in London. Perhaps she goes there if she has had a little fall out with Guy. Or maybe she uses it because she is mega loaded and can afford the measly £7500 a night suites. Hells bells. I could buy a car with that. Or 10,000 sheets of Basic Grey. Hmmmmmm.
So we walk in and are seated and look at the menu and decide to order the champagne menu which includes strawbs and cream as well as champagne and finger butties and coyks (coyks are cakes but said in a cockney accent). And we thought we would be brilliant and order the Lanesboroughs special blend tea which tasted bloody awful in all honesty. But the coyks were scrumpsh even though this one looked like it was grown in a nuclear processing plant - is anything naturally that green?
And you see the cake on the top tier with gold leaf? Well we didn't know if you ought to have eaten it or not but we did and we are still here to tell the tale. It tasted a bit icky, if the truth be told.We even had a coyk that was minty fresh (its tucked behind the illuminous green number). Now, when you eat things that are minty they taste like a sweetened mint. But god no. Not this little bugger. It tasted like you had just put real fresh peppermint leaf in your mouth combined with a biscuity base and a cream paste that again, tasted really proper minty. Both Clare and I gagged and would have even accepted some Colgate on a rich tea biscuit in lieu of. That little treat is something you ought to serve to your mother in law. Its best avoided if one is to venture there, quite by our recommendation of course. And then when we had polished off the entire three tiers of lard, out came crumpets and scones. Ive never eaten cold crumpets before but I managed to stuff it on whole with raspberry jam.
Clare and I pretended to be kajillionaires by crooking our fingers and gently wiping the corners of our mouths between bites (I even, at one point and even only for a milli second, lifted my nose in the air (as in being posh and also to see if the air smelled sweeter when you did). But it didn't. And Clare only ruined it by passing me a tissue saying that there were some nasties up there that needed evacuating). We scanned the room and dissected each guest there wondering what kind of person they would be and would they be common northerners like us. Beneath where we situated was an Arab family. We had exchanged pleasant smiles throughout our stay and we decided they were royalty and we were probably right when their platinum Amex card was flashed when they paid their bill. Our whole reality was smacked right in the face when Clare replicated their payment method. Only because it just didn't have the desired effect of flashyness when she presented her Abbey National Visa card. In fact, it signalled the end of our "lady what lunches" pretence. But we shall never forget the entire experience for as long as there is Coyk.
Just as we were about to Leave, Dawn and JJ arrived and we went to sit in the Lanesboroughs uber posh bar that can only be described as a red leathered gentlemans room. It was so posh that the free nibbles they served were displayed on a real silver, three tiered miniature cake stand. They invited us to drink some pink champagne and it rounded off our afternoon a real treat. For the record, these two people are generous beyond a fault and are two of the most nicest people in the crafting industry to enjoy time (and mucky jokes) with.
We all then took a trip to Harrods - come on, the sales were on!
We eventually ended up in the perfumery where this incredibly fabulous guy wafted and spritzed us and gave us all our own personal smellometer test. This helped determine our likes and dislikes of sweet/flowery/herby/mechanical grease perfumes. The whole time we were there he gave us the most bizarre rendition of his personal life coupled with his perfume genius. I was just agog. I mean, like - eyes popping right out of their shell. I just wanted to pick him up and put him in my pocket. My regret is that I didn't take a picture of him. But he had done his job properly as I ended up buying some rather deeeelish perfume by Herve Leger. Its a bit gorgeous. Clare bought one of my all time favourite perfumes - Shalimar by Guerlain. Its a classic, die hard perfume and everyone always asks me what I'm wearing when I wear it.
We rounded the day off by struggling with hotel envy at Dawns hotel and a burger supper. I couldn't possibly divulge Clares magic knickers story but let me tell you this. I am permanently damaged through bladder dysfunction from too much laughter. Seriously, who performs surgery on bladder problems on the black market (you know how much I despise the NHS).
It was then back to our fake fabulous hotel and feel our way in the dark through lack of electricity and up early for the day at QVC's Make and Take event at the QEII centre at Westminster.
You will have to wait for the next installment because the skin on my finger tips are bleeding from all this typing.