The News Page 11
September to December 2008
After my wedding in August I had two weeks extended stay in America to be with my wife before returning home to the UK to wait her arrival. As a US citizen we had to go through a lot of form filling and trips to the solicitors before applying for a visa for her. Luckily the visa was granted fairly quickly and she arrived in the UK on 1st October, which meant that I had to try and create some wardrobe space for her. Miss Smith’s clothes were therefore carefully sorted folded and placed in plastic containers on top of my wardrobe
Sat 11th October Tess Birthday
One of my best friends Tess was celebrating her 50th birthday and to celebrate this event she decided that she was going to go out and have a meal in a posh restaurant and then go on to a club. Unfortunately the cost of the meal in the restaurant was quite expensive and as my wife had not yet obtained a job, we decided to forgo the meal and just meet all the girls at the club later in the evening. We had a really relaxing day and all our planning was great we had and early lunch and a late dinner and even managed to fit in an afternoon nap so that we would be ready for a late night out.
My wife even managed to do my hair for me, whilst I sat watching television she put my hair in curlers, I think curlers make hair look great, but the sitting there with them digging in your head is a real pain. I think I was counting the minutes until the time that they were due to be taken out. I decided that the most pain free method was to do my make up whilst the curlers were in the theory being that I would concentrate on the make up and forget about the pain in my head, this proved to be fairly successful and I managed to get almost completely dressed before it was time to take the out. It was then time to grab our bags make sure there were no neighbours about and then make a dash for the car. Driving in heels is always a difficult thing, but having put my shoes on there was no way they were coming off again.
As we were driving to the club about 10.30 at night the roads were not that busy, and we managed to get to within half a mile of the club before we hit a traffic jam, the jam was caused by a road being dug up and diverted traffic, but the diversion was the way we intended to go. I had a momentary panic but somehow after taking various left and right turns we ended up outside the club and even found a parking space. Once inside the club we immediately found a place at the bar and managed to consume the first of many glasses of water. I managed to spot a couple of other friends inside who had been at Tess’s meal, but had left early as they were judging the Miss Alternative London which was occurring at the club that night. They told us the gurls were having a good time at the restaurant and would be here shortly, another friend also arrive who had not been at the meal and therefore we had a few people to talk to whilst we waited and waited and waited.
During our wait the Miss Alternative London show started and we tried to watch this, but it was very busy and we could not get a clear view of the stage we only saw the heads of the gurls parading up and down the catwalk. By this time it was getting on for 1.30am and still no sign of my friends, so we decided that enough was enough jumped into the car, left them a message on various phones and drove home. Next morning I did get a phone call telling me that they were having such a good time at the other venue they decided not to move on. Thanks gurls.!!!
Fri 28th Nov Shopping with Nas
For the last couple of years, I have gone out shopping and for lunch with my friend Nas around the time of my birthday. As she was working for much of November our shopping trip was much later this year. Due to the recent issues I had experienced with my Manager at work (being told my hair was too long and unprofessional) I decided that I would have to purchase a new wig.
I again booked an appointment and the hair salon and was initially a bit disappointed when they told me with my shorter hair they would be unable to curl it anymore, which was a shame as it’s a style that I had gotten used to an liked. However they were able to come up with something that looked pretty good and after it was done I made a quick dash avoiding the rain to Nas’s house to get ready. I managed to get dressed including putting a roll neck jumper on without messing up my hair and then Nas did my makeup and nails for me, I’m not sure if we were chatting a lot, but time seem to fly by and it was almost one o clock before we left Nas’s house to make our way initially to the wig shop.
Nas is normally a great driver and knows all the short cuts around London, but for some reason she decided to go a different way, but somehow she managed to get us completely lost. I don’t really know my way around London by car so we ended up calling her boyfriend in order to get directions, when we got to the shop we were just able to find the last parking space and get inside the shop before the heavy rain started again.
Trendco is a great shop for wigs you get taken into your little booth and they bring the various wigs on and you try them on for style, I should have taken pics of the ones we tried. I wanted to get something fairly long, but not just in one colour I wanted highlights or several colours. A couple of the wigs were to blonde, but eventually we narrowed it down to two. Both of which met my tick list and after trying them both on again I decided to go for one which was coffee with blonde highlights in it.
After leaving Trendco we drove back into central London (without getting lost) and made our way to Selfridges, because it was in the run up to Xmas even the Selfridges car park was busy and we had to Queue for 10 minutes before driving in. I had seen a corset type top that I wanted to get from one of the concession shops in Selfridges, but when we got there we were told they had moved them all out to another shop further down Oxford Street. It was only a 5 minute walk, but we decided to have a very late lunch first. There is a nice restaurant in Selfridges over looking the ground floor, but it was a spiral staircase leading up to it, and I suddenly became aware of the shortness of my skirt, but hopefully the opaque tights helped. We managed to get a table straight away and sat down for lunch. Nas had fish and chips and I mushroom risotto, together with a glass of wine. We were not directly positioned over the shop floor this year so could not comment on as many people as on last years trip.
After lunch we made our way to the other shop and found the top that I was looking to buy, I had to try on a couple as the sizes were a bit strange, but eventually I managed to find one that fitted correctly, we then walked back to the car and took almost 2 hours to get home due to the very heavy traffic.
Saturday November 29th Tapas and La Clique
This was the first of Nas two xmas parties and after getting home and getting all my make up off and getting unpacked yesterday, it was time for bed and then up again repacking my bag ready to start the whole process again. I had again managed to secure a hair appointment and mid afternoon I drove to the salon with my wife to get my hair done. My usual hair dresser did my hair and as I went to pay there was another guy there and he could not stop starring at me(and I was not even made up) probably never seen a guy with designer stubble and curled hair before.
I got dressed and made up at Nas’s and then we waited for the other girls to arrive, we had a bit of a near disaster when our restaurant reservation had been cancelled at a days notice, but we managed to find somewhere else and set off in Nas’s car. For the second day running she managed to get lost. Eventually we found the restaurant (which we have been to three times before) and we had a really good meal. It’s a Tapas restaurant and all the food id fresh and there is loads of variety even enough to suit my vegetarian wife, as always with Tapas we ordered to much but managed to finish nearly all the plates. We then sat about putting the world to rights before we had to move on as our table was booked for the next group.
So we piled into Nas’s car and set off into central London, we actually made good time, but as ever the problem in central London is finding a parking space. We nearly got one in Covent Garden, but eventually had to settle for an NCP car park in soho. It was only a short walk from the car park to the theatre and we got a few friendly comments shouted at us. When we got to the theatre there was a huge queue and we had to stand there in the freezing cold with the wind blowing my legs (note wear trousers next time its cold) the queue was at least moving and after about 10 minutes we managed to progress to the warmth of the foyer hand over our tickets and then get guided to our seats.
We did not know what to expect from the show its was billed as burlesque, but the first act was a singer and initially you just heard his voice, but when you started listening to the lyrics you realised how funny they were. Next up were two acrobats and what they did was amazing, and so it went on from this. Each act was bizarre, but amusing, funny and sometimes scary. I think each act formed two routines and many of them were almost entirely different, I think my favourite was the guy who in his first act squeezed his body through two tennis rackets. It was pretty grim watching him dislocating his arms to squeeze them through. In the second half he did a balancing trick where he balanced on a bucket sized container then put a smaller one on top of the first, then a smaller one and so on until he had about 6 containers the smallest about the size of a soup can and he was sitting on the top, pretty amazing really.
Once the show was over we walked back through soho to the car and then Nas drove us back to her house, as I had only had one drink the whole night I was able to drive home, get my make up off and get to bed at a reasonable time.
Saturday 20th December The Brick House and Way Out Club
As she had another free Saturday close to xmas Nas decided to have another night out and invited all the gurls who had not been able to make the previous party. My wife had not been feeling to well so told me to go out for the night without her.
As usual on these nights out I managed to get myself another hair appointment, as it was the last Saturday before xmas the hair dressers was really busy and I only just managed to get a parking space. My usual girl was fully booked all day so one of the other stylists did my hair for me and did a great job.
After leaving the hairdressers I drove around to Nas’s and took my place in the make up production line. I think one of the gurls had to cancel and I was therefore first to be made up. I had chosen to wear a short black dress and Nas did my make up so that it would good for the night out a few little bits of glitter here and there. Having been made up first I had plenty of time to sit relax wait for the others to get ready and start early on the red wine. After two very large glasses I knew I would not be driving home that night, I think by the time we left to go to the restaurant most of the bottle had been downed by two of us.
The journey to the restaurant was quite quick however when we got there it was very difficult to find a parking space, after doing a couple of laps of the block we eventually found somewhere, but it was a 5 minute walk along a very busy part of town. Once Inside we were escorted to our table which was on a balcony level and we were therefore looking down at the stage where the burlesque show was going to take place, unfortunately we had missed the first part of the show.
The trouble with writing these write ups a few months after the event means I cant remember all the details of the night(or that could be the wine). I remember the food being very good, but can only remember that I had John Dory which I had not eaten before. With the food a few glasses of mine were had and then we got round to the compulsory pictures. Once we had finished eating we went downstairs to the lower level where we had another drink and a dance or two.
It was then time to move onto the Way Out Club, as there were only four of us by now we were able to go across in one car, rather than having to wait for taxis. We also managed to secure a parking space right outside the club. It was pretty busy inside as this was the last Saturday prior to xmas and as we pushed through the crowds I noticed some more of my friends were inside. So it was over to talk to them and a few more drinks, by this time I had gone off the wine and was on Gin and Tonic. It had been a while since I had seen people and they had also been out on a Christmas event so we compared notes on the food and what we were all wearing.
Quite a few more drinks flowed and we watched the show, followed by more drinks and then a turn on the dance floor. By this time it was getting quite late and a couple of the gurls and Nas decided that it was time to go home. As my friend Rebecca was there and she was willing to give me a lift home we stayed until about 3.30am.
By the time Rebecca dropped me off it was about 4.30 in the morning so it was off with the clothes and make up and onto the sofa so as to not disturb the wife. When I got up I carefully put the clothes away ready to enjoy xmas and forget about Nicola for a month.
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As the wedding was fast approaching the gurls decided that I should have a hen night, and whilst I looked forward to a night out, I did not really want a drunken night out that involved wearing silly costumes and strippers.
We came to a compromise in that we agreed to go for a meal and then on to the Way Out Club. After a bit of searching we eventually found a restaurant that looked good and then sent an email to my friends, unfortunately a few of them were away or were unable to make the chosen date. However I did manage to find about 10 gurls who fancied going out.
On the day I managed to get an appointment with my hairdresser, as I stepped out of my flat there was a guy there hired by the managing agents painting the interior walls. I had seen him earlier in the week so we said hello. Once I got to the hairdressers I decided to try something different to the usual curly look that I tend to go for on my nights out. Amanda and I chose a straighter style which had a few flicks in it. I then returned to flat, but as I arrived back there the painter was still there and he gave me a very strange look as I walked past him back into my flat.
The next thing for me to decide was what to wear and as I was trying not to spend to much money, so I wore a next dress that I worn on several previous occasions, but luckily nobody commented that they seen it before. As it was quite a big night out for me I asked Nas to do my make up, so once I had packed my bag it was back out again (no painter this time) to Nas’s house. Nas was also doing the make up for a few of the other gurls, and I believe for the first time in history we actually ran to schedule and even made it to the restaurant in time for our booking
The restaurant was called the Wapping Project and as the name suggests it is in Wapping, it’s an old pump station and there are still working parts inside. The table that was reserved for us was slap bang in the middle on a raised platform so all eyes were on us as we walked in. I made sure I sat down in a ladylike fashion with my knees together.
Prior to ordering our food we all started off with a cocktail which were very nice, as its been a while I cant remember exactly what I ordered, but remember we passed our cocktails round. The food menu was very extensive but again a few beers have been drunk since the event and the memory aint what it used to be, so I can’t tell you what I had to eat. I think it may have been duck, but I remember the food was very good and the waitress was very attentative, at the end of the meal I was given a cake to celebrate my special occasion.
After dinner we decided to move on to the Way Out Club, which is only a few miles from the restaurant, and luckily we all managed to fit in one big taxi. Inside the club we met up with some other old faces that I had not seen for sometime, and so the next few hours were spent drinking, talking and dancing away until 4am. It was then time to go home, I shared a taxi with Rebecca, it’s always great in a taxi with Rebecca as she knows all the back doubles and short cuts, and she was soon directing the cabbie home.
I believe I got home around 5am and after removing my make up I hit the sack and woke up about 10.30. I had been doing a bit of running at this time, so decided to run over to Nas’s house to pick up my car this is about an 8.5 mile run, with a lot of the run being uphill. I didn’t feel brilliant on the run, but was pleased to finish, however when I got there I realised I had forgotten the key for my car steering lock, so I was going nowhere. Nas had gone out for the day, I eventually managed to find a taxi to take me home and then back again with my keys. However it does not end there, because when I got back and into the car the battery was flat and the car would not start so I had to call out the breakdown service to get my car started and I eventually got home around 3pm and went back to bed.