Monthly Archives: June 2011

Tapas, wine, Swedes and Bon Jovi

Bon Jovi, Hard Rock Calling in Hyde Park

I’m not quite sure where my gradual liking for rock music has come from. I think it started when I lived in Italy a few years ago and discovered Vasco Rossi, an amazing Italian rock singer, and I guess it grew from there. I have to admit I only realised on Friday night, while watching Glastonbury, that I really liked U2, a bit shameful being Irish and all that, but better late than never I guess!

When my friend told me a few months ago that she was going to see Bon Jovi at Hard Rock Calling and that I should come along, I didn’t think twice about saying yes. A few of us met for tapas and wine first, from there we moved to join the Swedes in Hyde Park who were celebrating midsummers day in Swedish style with flowers, a picnic and wine.

Bon Jovi was good, it was jammed with people. His three hour set was a mixture of hits and some I’d never heard before.

We somehow ended up in a club in Shoreditch after the concert. Lets just say it was a fun night, Bon Jovi was great and from what we all remember we had a good night!

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Books

My growing book collection

Last night, for the first time in ages, I got stuck into a book which I couldn’t put down.

When I left Ireland I had to leave my beloved book collection behind (to be repossessed one day) and I decided that I would join a library in London rather than buy books. A year and half later I have a library card, which I have never used, and a room with a steadily growing book collection!

I was talking to a friend about buying books the other day and she agreed with me that when she reads a good book, she needs to have it, not just borrow it. It is one of my vices, along with shoes, but more about that another time. This is further fuelled by having a fabulous second had Oxfam book shop on Marylebone High Street right on my route to and from work.

Unfortunately, nights like last night don’t occur too often. When I get home from work I’m usually so tired I just crash out on the sofa and watch Eastenders or Corrie (a poor but easy substitute to reading) before clambering into bed.

Saying that I’m always on the look out for a new book that will keep me glued to the pages and up all night reading. All suggestions are welcome.

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Harry meets the Chelsea Pensioners

Prince Harry greeting the hospitals oldest resident Joe Britton, aged 99

One of our clients at work is Royal Hospital Chelsea. The hospital was founded by Charles II in 1682 to house elderly and infirm war veterans in their retirement ensuring they enjoy their retirement peacefully.

The hospital is situated in stunning grounds in Chelsea in London. Every June the hospital hosts an annual Founder’s Day Parade in which the pensioners parade in the hospital’s Figure Court.

Each Founder’s Day the pensioners are reviewed by a member of the royal family. This year Prince Harry was the first serving officer to review the Pensioners’s Parade since HRH The Duke of Kent in 1974.

The Chelseas Pensioners standing to attention during the ceremony

Although I don’t work on the account I was asked to help out at the event. As you can imagine I did not hesitate in saying yes to helping out.

The weather was perfect and the hospital’s beautiful grounds looked lovely in the sunshine. The men in scarlet stood to attention as Prince Harry entered amid a fanfare of trumpets. The media scrambled for a good shot of the prince as he walked past speaking to a number of pensioners on his way.

Chelsea Pensioners joining the Parade

One bold pensioner, William Titchmarsh 85, asked the prince when he was getting married. A blushing Prince Harry replied “not for a long time” and then added “who put you up to this?”

Ironically this incident happened right in front of the media pen, and as you can imagine it was instantly jumped upon and got into pretty much every paper in the UK and further afield the same and the following day.

All in all, a fun day’s work and a great story.

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Part of the hood

There comes a time when you have moved somewhere new when you suddenly realise you have become a local. Mine came this morning (almost a year and a half into my sojourn in London) when I went across the road to get my Sunday papers and realised I didn’t have enough money. The guy was like, that’s no problem you can pay next time.

It was a perfectly normal thing to say, but it took me completely by surprise. Good surprise that is. I’m sure to them I am the annoying girl who always asks for a receipt (I need it to get my expenses from work) but nevertheless it was a pleasant feeling being seen as a local.

I guess being a bit of a traveller and never staying too long in one place, I’m not used to being recognised by people in an area.

What’s next in being a local? Free drinks, helping out at the community fete? I’ll have to wait and see I guess!

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