Thursday, September 30, 2010

Kitchen Confidential – 1

1. Being a maha-procrastinator it has taken 4 years of grumbling about the lack of space and general condition of the kitchen before I have bothered to do anything about it.
2. I know that builders are not to be plucked out of thin air. I have watched Rogue Traders you know.
3. So I have turned to the cyber world and a local group of people I mostly trust – mums in my area - to advise me on how to find builders.
4. Not long before there are plenty of recommendations; helpful mums writing in with anecdotes of who has done what for them, honest criticisms and plenty of advice on what to expect, especially with a small child in tow.
5. I go to see my neighbours efforts at re-doing their bathrooms which can now safely be called Glorious Wet Rooms Of Super Deluxe Hotel Standard. They designed it and then sourced the materials themselves. By learning how to do large chunks of it themselves, they only paid for part of the labour. My mad head nodding at their proud pronouncements only confirms (silently) that I will never be interested in DIY, I have not thought about the design and have no clue as to what I want beyond the all encompassing ‘I want a new kitchen’.
6. I get the feeling I am going to have to throw money at this. The design, the kitchen and builders. As I am certainly not talented nor inspired I have decided I want and need to be rich. Or miserly.
7. Most highly recommended builder in local area is called. He is part 1 of a duo (henceforth BP1). Part 2 (BP 2) is on holiday (probably with the oodles of money he has earned off other beleaguered mums looking for counter top space for sterilisers {!} like myself).
8. BP 1 comes to see us. Has an Italian name and accent to match. Brings a kitchen catalogue. Is upfront about the fact that he can get us a huge discount if we use this company and that he will make a good commission. But completely open to us choosing a kitchen from anywhere. Or even helping us design one ourselves - from scratch. As if.
9. The catalogue is thick and the colour pictures very enticing. I am imagining/ dreaming/ visualising how lovely my kitchen will look when all this crap is pulled out and replaced by one of the state of the art kitchens.
10. Of course I have not factored in the size of my kitchen or what a big hole this shall blow in the bank account. I am nothing if not a dreamer.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

The Five XI

1. If you live on a tropical island and / or it is sunny and balmy where you are look away now for there is more complaining to come. August was rubbish as far as summer went. Every time I exclaimed how lovely and sunny and bright the day was it would promptly turn cloudy and piss it down and turn windy and cold. Bleh! I am hoping for some lovely last of the summer sunshine from September though and so far it looks promising. As for now always talking about the weather like a British person I guess I am a reluctant convert. I understand the need to talk about it ALL.THE.TIME. because mainly it’s perpetually mucking with transport (come snow, hail, shine or rain) and everyone’s plans for everything from weekends to birthday celebrations or night’s out depend on the mood that has been set by the weather. As fodder for conversation it helps that some days (like Sunday past) we have all seasons in the 24 hours - that can keep our conversations going waaaay long!

2. There is a Tube strike (another thing mucking with the transport). Which means nothing if you work from home or walk to work or better still don’t work at all but instead meander to the park with a small child and his trike behind you. However if like me you do use the system, today’s breakdown could mean an hour and half of rubbish commuting packed into a bus of sweaty people instead of 2 zippy tube trains and a 20 minute journey. I think I shall have to leave right after lunch. No mean feat considering I got here only in time for mid-morning tea.

3. I’m not very keen on Twitter. So far none have really captured my imagination and made me come back for more. I really don’t care for the life minutiae of ‘standing at bus stop’, ‘ate undabhurji for breakfast’ variety of information, even (possibly especially) if I know you or of you as a blogger. But to be honest beside the blogs I read and their twitter feeds (that I glance at but largely ignore in fabour of the real mcCoy) I have not really explored the tweeting world. However this might be about to change as I have begun to follow a few tweets of humour that are perfect strangers to me. Following one particularly funny twitter feed at the mo: The Queen. Particularly funny if you follow the fascination of the British public with it's Royals.

4. We had a weekend in Zurich to see friends and their two boys and to bond with V’s brother who had flown to the city from Singapore on work. Kid and Uncle bonded instantly. Kid and other kids had a good time. Their house with its 4000sq ft and every toy imaginable was like landing head first in Hamleys. Kid was highly excited. Short but lovely weekend.

5. So the Indian High Commission tale finally finished. Only the week it finished I had to go abck on an unrelated matter. That was not fun except that some woman in the line started having a go at me because she thought I was jumping the line which was a huddle of people rather than a curving line. And when I apologised I could not help but add the words ‘don’t get all antsy lady’ to which her reply was ‘what is antsy? Are you abusing me? What it means? Tell me now’. Frazzled nerves at 7.15am are pleasant for no one.