Posh do

My phone line is in and working. Some confusion when the NTL engineers arrived this morning because they thought they were installing two lines, and I was only expecting one.

Another perk of being a councillor, clearly, is working in the glorious bulding that is Nottingham Council House. The building is not only used for council business, but occasionally it is hired out for functions. I was calling through this evening to check my pigeonhole and see which of the local issues I am presently dealing with I could feature in our next leaflet, and saw the preparations for tonight’s do. I have seen some swanky affairs, but this rather takes the biscuit. The sweeping central staircase was decked out in feature lighting — four faux flame units rippling away, and coloured accent lighting behind the plants. There were two sets of followspots hidden away at the top, but most impressively of all, at the top of the stairs, the drinks table was being prepared. With cut crystal champagne flutes, and many bottles of cassis. Someone’s getting Kir Royales later this evening, it would seem.

Not me, however. Tonight, I’m slaving over a printing machine getting Focus ready for delivery. At nearly 10pm, I’m not nearly halfway done.

I’m still prevaricating over modes of transport to ALDC‘s meeting in Hebden Bridge tomorrow. I’ve looked into trains, and it’s going to take well over three hours to get there, via Sheffield and Leeds, whilst according to the AA, I can drive it in two. And the fare is twenty-five quid, and I don’t think it would take that much petrol. But will I get hopelessly lost? Will my weary eyes finally conk out and leave me crashing about the motorway? Will I be too weary to drive home? Sunday’s work is starting off printing 40,000 leaflets for Nottingham East, so Saturday night’s job is designing the leaflet, and I need to be at home, or at least near an internet connection to do that, so that I can show people drafts and so that I can download the appropriate pictures from the Lib Dem document vaults.

The clincher is that I’d have to be on a train at 8.39am, whilst if I drive I can probably get away with leaving at 10am. (Note to self–allow time to purchase petrol.)

In other news, our shiny new Nottingham Lib Dem website is alive and well, if presently a little sparse. More content will follow. And we will have to start issuing press releases!

Earlier today, some nasty oiky schoolchildren in Derby shouted ‘mullet’ at me — no fair! I even got a haircut yesterday (neatened, not shortened). I nearly bought a reconditioned Dyson for fifty quid from a reconditioned appliance shop near LD Books in Derby.


Gadding about

I’m making a few trips this week, but so far it’s not feeling like I’m achieving terribly much. I spent only an hour or so in Leicester today–drove all that way before realising that although I’d brought my laptop with me I’d forgotten the bloody power source. Luckily there are plenty of other machines down there, and the main reason for making the trip was to spend some time show someone how to use party software on their own computer.

Tomorrow, it’s off to Westminster for a meeting in Portcullis House. I do so hope I managed to book one of those nice new trains with electrical sockets at every seat. Flying visit into the capital and back without really time for getting anything else done in the vicinity, more’s the pity.

Friday I’m booked to go and spend some time in the Derby office–partly to finally see some of my own handiwork: a newspaper-sized leaflet I designed before Christmas but haven’t actually had a physical copy of yet. I like to try and keep copies of everything I do in a folder as a portfolio, but when it comes down to it, there’s far too much of it. The big projects, however, it’s worth keeping for posterity. And excitingly on Friday morning, NTL are turning up to put a new phone line in my house: Nottingham City councillors are entitled to have a city council telephone extension at their domicile, and they’re finally ready to put mine in.

On Saturday I’m heading to Hebden Bridge for an ALDC management committee meeting. It’s the first one I’ve been to. I can’t decide whether to go by train or to drive–actually, I’m leaning more and more to taking a train, since at least that gives me a chance to read the papers, and maybe even get some work done. Looks like I’m going to be spending the rest of the weekend slaving over a Risograph on a leaflet for Nottingham East’s Lib Dem PPC.

But now, bed. I’m working, not 100% successfully, on resetting my body clock. Since my manic all-nighter on Monday, I’ve been going to bed earlier each night, and hopefully, hitting the sack before 2am will mean I’m adequately rested for my 10.30am train tomorrow morning.

Cox and Box

My body clock is buggered to such an extent that we’re re-enacting Cox and Box here in the Foster-Weston household. I didn’t get to bed until 8am this morning, after spending all night getting through my CSI marathon (*) and stuffing a couple of hundred envelopes. As I was going to bed, Paul was getting up, and we repeated the dance around each other when I got up at 5pm and he came home from work and decided he wanted a nap before supper–which was a tasty gammon joint with mustard mash, cabbage and carrots.

A friend wrote in his blog the other day that he was recalibrating his circadian rhythms, so maybe I’m not the only one with body clock issues. Circadian rhythms are different, I understand, from Arcadian rhythms, which must be more the like “dee-diddle-dee, dee-diddle-dee, dee-diddle-dee, good morrow good lover!” leitmotiv that heralds Strephon throughout Iolanthe.

I think I’ve cleared all four seasons of CSI, a season of CSI Miami. I’m now halfway through the all three current series airing in the States, including the new CSI:NY. I do love the cross-overs from one series to another: I’ve just seen Michelle Dessler from CTU:LA crop up in Nevada’s busiest DNA lab whilst President Palmer’s new aide from season 3 has shown up as a sex offender who has to disclose his location under Megan’s Law. A few episodes earlier we watched someone who was a NASA researcher for President Bartlett show up at a furry convention in Las Vegas dressed as a wolf.


The software from www.fitday.com says that if I want to lose 20kg by May then I need to eat fewer than 1,700 calories a day until then.

I’ve charted what I’ve eaten today, and despite it being complete rubbish, I seem to be on target. Achieved largely by getting up so late that I only ate two real meals. Worryingly, however, 20% of today’s calories came from Smarties. Damn that Xmas chocolate!

Tomorrow, the plan is an early start to go and check out Nottingham’s weekly car boot sale. We’re planning on trying our hands at making some money out of auld tat in the house by flogging out of the capacious boot of my Skoda Favorit GLXie. Vendors have to get to Nottingham Racecourse by 7.30am; you can start buying stuff by 8.30am. That’s an awful lot earlier than the average Sunday morning rising time for me. This week, just recceing. And not buying more tat. Oh, no.

High winds tonight

The wind is blowing so hard direct on the window in my office as I sit here indulging my late-night CSI addiction that the curtains are moving and I can feel a draft. Still, I like windy weather. Makes driving tricky but makes walking — in true Skegness style — bracing.

Has been a while since I wrote anything down, so for the record, I had a lovely festive season. A quiet Christmas day in with Paul, who loved his main present, a chiming Westminster clock that’s kept him awake ever since. New Years Eve, I cooked an 8 course meal for the usual suspects I’ve been spending New Years Eve with since I nearly got us all killed by being moody over the 1999/2000 changeover. Before that I spent less than 24 hours with my parents in Leominster, and on New Year’s Day, and less than 6 with Paul’s in Chinnor.

Man, it starts raining fast in Las Vagas (CSI 1×18). And looks like piranha really can skeletonize a cow in 10 minutes (CSI 1×15).