So that's why this week's report is late — I ran out of "go" yesterday.
Nevertheless I have managed to find a few things that cheered me pathetic soul during the week ...
- Le Truc Vert. On Monday, Noreen and I both had early afternoon meetings in central London. We trundled off mid-morning and had lunch at Le Truc Vert in North Audley Street, just a few yards from the US Embassy. This is Mayfair, so we're not talking the "cheapskate" end of the market, although Le Truc Vert isn't outrageously expensive either. We indulged ourselves with some mouthwatering steak and a glass of red wine before parting for our respective meetings. Le Truc Vert promises to become a firm favourite.
[It is about this point when the week started to go to hell in a handcart. And no it wasn't the bistro; the signs were there before that.]
- Fog. On Tuesday night it was thick with fog. No, not a pea-souper. Almost no-one under the age of 65 has seen a proper London pea-souper; the last big one was I think in 1952. Even the thick, dirty fogs of my childhood in outer London, when you could see only about 3 feet, were pretty tame. No, this was just good, old-fashioned, clean white fog. And it was freezing. Visibility here was probably down to about 100 yards. I like fog; I always have; even those nasty dirty ones of my childhood. It's disorientating; mysterious; ethereal.
- Rime on Trees. On Wednesday morning the freezing fog had left the trees covered in rime. Beautiful filigree white lace in an ethereal mist. Our silver birch tree looked gorgeous; real picture-book stuff that we hardly ever see in London.
- Beans on Toast at Midnight. This is the sort of daft thing that happens when you're ill. Very late, like gone 1130, on Thursday evening, having eaten almost nothing for two days, I needed beans on toast. Why beans on toast I have no clue! Now Noreen is a great believer in eating what you fancy, when you fancy it, at such times. So she trotted off and brought me beans on toast. So there I am, at a few minutes to midnight, sitting in bed, eating beans on toast. And at times like this such things are stunning by how good they are.
- Noreen. Generally during the experiment I have refrained naming Noreen amongst my five selections, despite that she deserves it every week! But this week she really has been magnificent. She's mopped up all the things which needed doing urgently and which I couldn't do, as well as providing me food when I needed it and company. She organised all the Christmas cards (luckily I had already printed address labels) just leaving me a pile I needed to scribble in. And she has wrapped and posted all the parcels. I just could not have done any of that this week. I'm not sure Noreen appreciates just how much I appreciate what she does, and her input to the "partnership". Somehow words never seem to say it quite right!