Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Fleeces & socks

So my major priority this week was to purchase ALL the stuff that Katie needs to take with her on her International Award trip to India in February - she's going trekking in the foothills of the Himalayas with Doha College.  I know, I know - the words 'Katie' and 'trekking' do not go together - the thought of her wee leggies wearing massive big hiking boots is just a whole bag of wrong.  However, I digress.  There's a shop here called 'Go Outdoors' which advertises heavily on TV, and they've just opened up a massive new store a few minutes' drive from the flat.  Gayle had the day off, so she came over and off we set, list in hand. Now at this point, I have to say that 'Go Outdoors' is the very LAST type of shop in the world I would normally frequent - those who know me well will understand what I mean - but what a pleasant surprise!  I could almost imagine myself in a fleece, puffa jacket and Timberland boots, hiking through the clear mountain air, cheeks all rosy and shining with health....................or maybe not!  Anyway, it's an amazing place - has absolutely everything you could ever want for all kinds of outdoor pursuits, and we were quickly able to fill a trolley with fleeces, socks, hat, gloves, head-torch, water purification tablets, reconstituted mealpacks, waterproofs, etc etc.  £215 later, all done - result!  So going to pack it all away in a bag and forget about it until I fly back to Doha in Feb.  Just got to get pool shoes for Katie to wear when they go white-water rafting - she refuses point blank to wear the strappy sandal things and I agree with her, they are HIDEOUS and would do her street-cred no good whatsoever.

So feeling all virtuous about being a good mummy, it was now time for Gayle and me to go and do some 'real' shopping, after a spot of lunch.  Drove to Fort Kinnaird shopping mall, parked up outside Superdrug (I LOVE that shop, managed to spend £80 on make-up & toiletries) and when Gayle got out of the car, she slipped on the packed ice and fell flat on her face.  Poor girl went down like a ton of bricks - boom!  Actually, she landed on her bum, so no damage done except to her dignity.  Once I was satisfied that she hadn't hurt herself, I couldn't stop laughing!!  She will have a massive bruise tomorrow for sure.

Had lunch in M&S cafe, which is always full of old people or mothers with small babies. Fresh tomato & basil soup with bread rolls, shared a cheese & ham toasted sandwich and millionaire shortbread.  Yum.  There was an old couple sitting at a table near us, and we initially thought they were husband and wife, but observing them more closely, it appeared that she must have been about 90, and he 70, so most likely mother and son. So sweet - Jack are you listening?  That'll be you and me in 40 years time.......

Had a quick detour into Ocean Terminal to buy a birthday present for my niece Jodie who's going to be 18 on Friday, then off to Tesco to stock up on Pinot Grigio and vodka.

Lee came over after work, then Jodie came round too. Cracked open a bottle of champagne (thanks Trish!) ordered kebabs and pizza and drank loads of wine, watched 'The World's Fattest Man' on tv and generally had a great evening.  My sides were aching and sore we laughed so much .

Monday, 10 January 2011

Back in Edinburgh

So it's Tuesday 11 January and I'm having a hysterectomy on Friday.  Am I scared?  Am I concerned about losing my essential 'womanality'?  Not at all.  Want it all over and done with, so so fed up of all the problems I've been having.  Am sick and tired of bleeding, leaking, wearing panty liners and all that nonsense.  Begone poisoned uterus!

Flew into lovely (but cold) Edinburgh yesterday evening from Doha via London Heathrow.  Fairly uneventful journey, but as usual with Qatar Airways, flight was late taking off from Doha.  They never NEVER leave on schedule.  But we arrived more or less on time in London, where I had a 4 hour stopover.  Had to change from Terminal 4 to Terminal 5 which is no big deal with the free train transfer, but I'm seriously worried about how I'm going to manage on the return leg having to drag and lift my bags in and out of trains, up and down escalators, etc.  Won't be allowed to lift or do anything too strenuous after my surgery, so will have to get some help organised. I enquired at the British Airways desk about getting a wheelchair (imagine me in a wheelchair!) but was firmly put in my place about that.  Porters are not allowed to move between terminals, the only option would be for a porter to put my bags in a taxi and send them over to T5.  Hmmmmm, not good.  So what happens to travellers who are REALLY incapacitated and in a wheelchair, how do they manage to get their luggage moved from A-B?  Oh well, I'll wait and see and just play it by ear when it happens.

Sat in Terminal 5 and scoffed a Pret-a-Manger 'All Day Breakfast' sandwich, perfect.  Bag of caramelised onion and aged cheddar crisps, bottle of water.  What could be better? Always a such a treat to get my first taste of bacon after pork-free Qatar.  Bought loads of trashy magazines to catch up on all the latest celeb gossip and fashion too.  Just sat there people watching - fascinating.  One young guy left his backpack and numerous bags lying on the seats opposite me while he went off to use a computer (obviously he was having FaceBook withdrawal symptoms) despite frequent announcements that 'any unattended baggage will be removed and destroyed'.  I was so SO tempted to tell some officious jobsworth person just to see what would happen, but then thought if they DID do something about it and there was a subsequent bomb threat, it would seriously affect my travel plans, so decided against it.

Flight to Edinburgh was delayed by 30 minutes, and when I did eventually get on board, my seat was broken - it was only HALF a seat, there was no back to it!  Steward went to sort it out, and the 3 guys sitting behind thought it was such a laugh, making all sorts of comments about coming to sit on their laps instead.  I said, no I'll go and sit up front with the Captain, and ride his joystick.

Gayle  was waiting to meet me in Edinburgh, drove me back to the flat in her lovely new Audi.  She'd done some essential food shopping too - bread, eggs, milk, butter, wine and curry.  Oh, it's good to be home, flat is always so cosy and welcoming.  Gave Gayle her Mulberry Bayswater bag, with which she was thrilled, plus a LV purse and 2 cashmere pashminas - she's worth it.

Bloody phone's not working either - phoned Virgin to try and get it sorted, spent AGES pressing various buttons for different options before eventually being connected to a human called Meera who sounded EXACTLY like the Indian lady in Little Britain's Fat Fighters.  Then had the problem of trying to remember the password, as Nick set up the account and I didn't know it.  Tried various options, all the usual ones, and they all failed.  Anyway, she said ok, there IS a fault (erm, I know, that's why I'm calling) so I'll transfer you to technical services.  Got through eventually only to be told by mechanised voice 'I'm sorry but due to overwhelming number of calls, all our operators are busy. Please call again'.  AAAARRRRGGGHHHHH!!!!!

Cheered myself up by watching 'Britain's Biggest Loser'  Oh boy, they fat.  Fatty fatty bum bums (to paraphrase Marjorie Daws)  Totally love it though, coz it makes me feel like a skinny bitch.

Eventually gave in to extreme tiredness and crashed out before 10 o'clock.  Woke up PING at 4am and thought 'Where am I?'