Friday, December 10, 2004

Only Twelve Days to the Solstice

Not quite in my usual blogging mood, but thought I'd go on here to see how professional I might be! So I'll start in a mood of cloudy, grey winter and write positively, as an experiment.

There's only 12 days left before the days start getting longer again! Yippee! Looks like I might live to see another summer then. So far, although we have had bits of cold weather, and plenty of grey, there hasn't been much frost. In fact, I am STILL eating fresh raspberries off the crazy raspberry cane in my back garden. They're still ripening and turning red, although without much sunshine, they taste very watery.

Went to Brentwood by bus and train today. Took the bus to Romford, then caught the train. Same day train tickets vary in cost depending on your direction (into or out of London) and not just on the peak traffic cut-off time of 9.30A.M.

On the bus, I was amazed to see the Recorder Series' (local newspapers) premises on the road between Ilford and Seven Kings. Very smart building: almost could be in the Docklands. I wonder how long they've been there. Maybe they're expecting a general drift away from boring National newspapers, to well-reported local newspapers.

As the train moved out of London, passing Harold Wood, it entered the green belt, and although I was not expecting much, within a minute my brain was easing. Green nature. How much I must hate London, when just a minute of rural escape gives me ease.

So Brentwood still looks reasonably affluent, and even trudging up the hill looking at the gardens made a pleasant change from dear old Manor Park. (I went to interview a potential temp job, more for my sake than anything else, because it was in an area of the public services that I dread. ) Leaving that topic quickly...

The rest of today was winter hibernation. What a contrast to yesterday, when the SUN CAME OUT A LITTLE BIT. Oh, everybody was chirpier in the streets. It wasn't just me firing on all cylinders. In fact, I went into super-communicative mode and found an agency in Ilford that was willing to properly register me on their temp books. Which is why I ended up in Brentwood today, at my own expense. (I think I'll rename this blog, Money & the City, to reflect plain necessity. It's not as though it hasn't been heading that way. I'm already dreaming of paycheques, salivate, salivate. ) Of course, it was a big help that the recruitment agent is currently herself coping with her Dad dying in slow rollercoaster fashion. But I don't think the Brentwood temp job is for me, as their business area really is dreadful.

Wednesday was recovery mode from Monday and Tuesday. Monday I was trawling the Oxford Circus to Bond Street area, in search of temp agencies that might register me. Only one was willing, and several clearly admitted that they haven't enough jobs for the temps already on their books.

There were plenty of tourists around, but the kind of tourist on New Bond Street, nowadays! This used to be one of the most expensive shopping areas in London, but now the average shopper looks like they just stepped off a Ryanair flight.

One little touristy thing jogged my memory. It's St. Christopher Place. This is opposite Bond Street station, and is easily missed because there is only an alleyway called Gee Court between two shops by which you reach it. Why is it notable? Because even ten years ago, Oxford Street had lousy Christmas decorations. This year, I can't even remember noticing any! But St Christopher Place was back then the most beautifully decorated Christmassy place I could find in Central London. This year, it still looks quite nice, but is nothing now compared to what it used to be, and the place is mostly restaurants now. Sofra, the Turkish restaurant is still there. It's many, many moons since the one time I ate there.

So on Tuesday I went back to the area to register at that one temp agency. 70 wpm and expert Word and Excel. Yes, of course, they were more impressed with my typing speed than my university degree. And the fact that I spoke English as a mother tongue. Quite unusual, judging from the few other people that walked in while I was there.

That was my week. Who's to say that it was any more useful than one spent lying on a beach in Thailand? Crazy world, full of crazy work ethics. Now back to my money fantasies.....


Anonymous said...

You would have loved today's glorious weather over here! What a great change! Makes you want to stay out in the sun inspite of the cold!
Are you sure your rasperries are genetically correct?
PS: Thanks for the atom feed link :-)

loveandthecity said...

Thanks, Catherine, for reminding me that I wish I weren't here! It's a feeling that I have to actively suppress, especially now that I am very wary of chasing dreams....

Anonymous said...

You would have hated today's awful rainy and windy weather over here! Makes you want to stay in all day in front of a log fire!