Since The Plug Was Pulled

Event-Party, Events, Night-PartyJack reminded me of a something the other day. It’s not that long ago really…although it feels like a million years ago. Neneh Cherry’s daughter on stage at an award show a few months ago. What we liked most was all the other dancers making a great visual display. I remember loving the overall look of the performance.

Well it’s been almost three months since the plug was pulled on events like that. I know I am not the only one, but I do miss parties. I do miss events. I do miss live performances. But it is all for an important reason. It seems very trivial in comparison for the serious situation we are in.

Fairground, Lights, Amusement ParkI do like the memories of all the fun we have had during a time of easy free wheeling for the past few decades. But life is not all fun and dance and merry go rounds and candyfloss. Sure we miss the fun of the fair.

I am pleased to be busy at work. Time is passing quickly. I can be useful to our patients, useful to my colleagues and the wages I earn can be useful to my family. I guess it is not having something to look forward to on my day off that I miss. I am a big socialiser – parties, events, live performances, dinners with friends. I guess it is the sameness of each week, and each day off that is getting to me a bit.

But I don’t want to complain. I want to keep doing my bit to help everyone else. There are plenty of great memories that are an endless source of entertainment and amusement.

Jack In The Big Apple

nycJack is heading to New York for just less than a week in December. He seems to have an invitation for so many exciting events. There is no way he can go to everything. Most of his public appearances or events are in connection with charities he works with.

But every now and then he gets all excited to receive an invite to something that is not connected with his work as a volunteer. It’s more to do with his work in entertainment and his friends in that industry.

But he has managed to pad out his week with some training at a center in New York where a lot of the projects he has been involved in are coordinated from. So most of the week in New York will be “business” – well, volunteer business – and then he has this event he is super excited about right in the middle of his time there.

I don’t have it in me to be jealous. I am just amazed at how he seems to gets to go to so many interesting events and places, and seems to meet, or already know, so many people who are famous for one reason or another.

him.gifI love him. But sometimes, I am also a bif in awe of him. I don’t think that is a bad thing. It’s the volunteer spirit he has that is what is more significant to me than his involvement in the entertainment industry. He is my very own Magical Mister Mistoffelees!

Do I wish I was tagging along with him? Yes. But mainly because I will miss him and because I wish I was with him always. Just so I could marvel at his charismatic, gregarious, lovable ways. And I am an eency weency bit curious about the city of New York.

Hope he takes lots of photos for me. This is Jack…he will be taking selfies and photos every five minutes!

I’m Going Out Tonight

out tonightWell…more like this afternoon really. I am going to an event that will last for a long time. But you, know I am used to events that drag on a little because of the sheer amount of people present.

I have been worried about my outfit. I had an outfit picked out…but then the forecast is saying the weather is going to be gorgeous and so I have had to change my choice at the last minute and I am not so confidant in this other dress I have decided to wear.

The secret is remembering that everyone else is worried about their own outfit and they are probably not worried about yours! Harsh but true. So it is not worth being overly anxious.

There is a banquet early in the evening and then…later there will be a sort of party, with some live performers. But there will be a dance, which I am looking forward to.

But here is the thing…I have decided I am going to leave after the banquet and before the party really warms up to go to another event. A completely different event. Then I am going back for a dance.

Over the past few weeks, I have received three invitations for an event to do with commemorating the an event which is sacred to billions. I received two while I was out and about in London. One near London Bridge and the other I received when I was up in Camden. I was interested, but I knew I had this big bash to go to, so I thought it was not possible to go.

Then on Wednesday I was at work and I opened the door when someone buzzed the intercom and a beautiful young woman walked in and gave me the same invitation I have already received.

Three invitations – that clinched it. I am sure I can get away for a couple of hours in between the food and the dancing. I had to search on line and I have found that I can go to a hotel where they are holding the service to commemorate this profound night.

I know there will be a lot of people who will be dwelling on the foundation of all their faith and their hope for the future this weekend especially. So I hope you enjoy the weekend.

I Do Hope You Like Tennis

20180604_162130I mentioned last week I have been looking after my friends who have been visiting London for a few days before they continue their travels.

I have realized I make a pretty good tour guide.  I am very safety conscious and road conscious.  My handbag is a Mary Poppins model.  It contains everything a tour guide would ever need.  Bug repellent, plasters, sun block, paperback A-Z of London (because technology is not always reliable) and a couple of spare Oyster cards to use on London public transport.

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As my inspiration, I draw on “Tour Guide Barbie” who made me laugh down to my toes in “Toy Story 2”.

Since my friends are quite keen on tennis, they wanted to visit the AELTC – All England Lawn Tennis Club… which is home to the Wimbledon Tennis Championships which will begin on 2nd July this year.  Yes…the ccountdown to Wimbledon is on!  Which means that my Aunt Carol will not be answering her telephone.  She is one of the devotees that like to watch every moment broadcast and she fills up her fridge with strawberries and cream and during important matches she might indulge in some Pimms except for the final when she has Prosecco.  She has done that for years.  She loves it!

I have to admit, for my own part, I rarely make time to sit down for more than ten minutes to watch sports these days.  However, even I found it interesting to visit the club and see how busy the preparations are for the upcoming Championships.

Apparently, tennis players have already started to arrive in the Wimbledon area.  What looked to me like stalls from which they will be selling strawberries (perhaps for extortionate prices) are being erected at this very moment!

strawberries

Beautiful flower baskets are hanging from posts outside the club.  It is all starting to look rather lovely and even I could detect the excitement building.

Part of my interest is merely on account that I have been involved in the setting up and dismantling of large scale events many times over the years.  I have helped with the physical work of unloading lorries and then transporting needed equipment to all corners of a venue that would be needed by various departments.

In addition I have worked during events, sometimes as a first aider, sometimes as a steward, sometimes on security, I have worked on making props for stages and helped with administration duties.20180604_161935-1-1-1  I have sometimes in catering and as part of an army of cleaners.  Countless training sessions!!  What stands out in my mind is especially the setting up and dismantling.  They were always very exciting projects to be involved in. Sometimes we have worked all night after an event has finished to clear the venue of equipment.  Happy memories of being part of a team who had to go to every nook and cranny of these massive arenas and stadiums to make sure everything was retrieved.

As a steward we had some memorable events.  On two occasions we had “bomb scares” and had to evacuate thousands of people from massive venues.  One venue where that happened was the Manchester Evening News Arena (I think at the time it was known as the Nynex Arena).  We managed to evacuate 10,000 people in 8 minutes, before the suspicious package was investigated by an expert team.  It was very distressing to see the bombing last year at that venue.

Another event I worked at had a lot of parents with children in attendance.  We had three reports within an hour of a man trying to approach children near a part of the venue that as well as having public toilets and facilities for baby changing, was very close to a tunnel that led to the unloading bays and straight out onto a busy main road in the city and was also a few minutes from a national railway station.  In response, they put two tall and wide male stewards on the doors that led from the tunnel into the loading bay and a I was one of team of female stewards who were posted in this area and we had to watch everyone.  We were trained to approach anyone that we felt was lingering and looked a bit suspicious and ask them if they knew their way back to the seats.  During that event four men were “escorted” away from the event by large male stewards on account of their dubious steps.  The security team had been watching them and it was clear they were not there to enjoy the entertainment, they were there for other reasons that made their presence a concern.

You may have worked at large scale public events and be nodding your head in agreement because can well imagine all the things that go on “behind the scenes”.  If you have not worked at an event, but have made up a member of the audience, you might find it interesting to know how much planning, organization, training, equipment is needed to hold an event.

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So while my friends enthusiastically mused over everything tennis related… I reminisced about all the work that goes on to make these events possible.  It is exciting to be part of the workforce behind these events.  But it’s not all strawberries and cream you know!