I write this week’s entry from my sick bed. What was quite a good week has ended on a low, sniffling note. I woke this morning (Saturday) to find that I ached all over, had a runny nose, sore throat and no appetite – the latter is very unusual for me, so I must be sick. But we will forget about my illness and focus on what I did during the last few days when I was functioning on all cylinders.
As I reported last week, I was in Bristol, so on Monday morning, following a phone interview for BBC Radio Somerset, I drove back up the M5 and M6 to Manchester. I normally loathe this journey as traffic never fails to grind to a very tiresome halt as the two motorways meet, but on this occasion it did fail to grind to a halt and I (almost) sailed through – I say ‘almost’ as I was going at 20 miles an hour for five minutes or so, but this like racing at Silverstone in comparison to what it usually is. This rarity pleased me, and so all in all, it was a lovely journey.
Tuesday morning it was back to the grindstone, and off to my second-home of BBC Manchester to do an interview for BBC Radio Scotland on swearing. I was, as you’d expect, against regular swearing and was up against a little-heard-of Scottish comedian, whose name escapes me. I always like doing radio items on swearing as I go into the interview with the upper hand; my opposition, who argue that swearing is good, are not allowed to use profanities, as it’s live radio. I then spent the rest of the day in a few meetings with various people – I won’t bore you with the details here, but I am excited about a few local projects that are coming up in the next few months.
I spent most of Wednesday waiting in for a delivery of a mobile internet dongle to go with my new laptop, so I can access the internet wherever. It finally arrived, after I had washed the balcony furniture, cleaned the skirting boards, and deodorised the microwave. I know how to live.
My week then took a slight knock when friends came round for dinner. This in itself always is a delight, but not so much this time. They came round and said they’d cook: they brought the food; they drove themselves here so I didn’t have to drive them back, and they even cleaned up. Too good to be true… they then wanted to watch the world cup. I knew there’d be a catch somewhere. We watched the first half of South Africa versus Uruguay, which is 45 minutes of my life I won’t get back any time soon. Thankfully, they decided it was a boring match and so we switched channels. Hoorah!
Spent Thursday lunchtime on North Manchester FM, guesting on my friend Hattie’s (Twitter = @hattiepearson) show for two hours. This was most enjoyable and we both had a lot of fun. I then drove to Hale to meet my friend Emma (@emmabclarke) for coffee and a catch-up. I had that morning made chocolate crunch bites for us to eat – we met at Costa Coffee so had to be bit discrete in eating them. That evening I had a friend, James (@cumbrianjames), for dinner (not literally) and then we went off to BBC Radio 5 Live, where I had been booked to talking about social kissing (he was just coming along to watch – I’m the talent, not him!).
Finally, Friday saw me potter off to Harrogate to see some friends. Now, regular readers will know that I am addicted to Lakeland Plastics; I didn’t realise that they had a Harrogate shop. Well, Christmas had come early. I bought a strawberry huller and a cake leveller: I don’t know how I’ve managed up until now without such items. Lunch was taken at Betty’s Tea Rooms at Harlow Carr. Betty’s really is a British institution. The service is so wonderful, if sometimes a little trite. The waiting staff greet you warmly and are exceedingly attentive – perhaps one of the only places in Britain where service is not at a premium. If only more places were like Betty’s, the world would be a nicer, stem-gingered place to live.
Back to bed. This blog has quite drained me.