One thing at a time…

January has been a total twister of activity. It’s a very good thing that we had such a decent break over the silly season, because when I got back to work on 5th January, I felt like a house had landed on my head, which is actually quite an appropriate use of simile because it’s the crash of the housebuilding market in particular which is giving me grief at The Day Job. By 11am on our first day back, an announcement had been made to staff concerning future redundancies looming on the London skyline, and by the end of Tuesday, we’d made another group of people jobless.

The first month of 2009 has not been entirely doom and gloom. It’s certainly been a toughie, with long hours at work and stressful meetings aplenty, but fun has not been left entirely on the doorstep. A few days into the working year, I was invited to hang out with Jason Mical and the gang at Edelman. In case you’re not one of those dedicated Epicurienne readers who memorises my each and every post, Edelman does the PR for Stella Artois and Stella Artois had an airship over London last summer and through my blog I won a prize to go up in the airship but because the weather was so well um English and my luck was a bit um er pants, I never actually achieved the much coveted flight in the beer blimp. (you can breathe now) BUT I did get to meet Jason, and Jason is a lovely chap who gives me Stella Artois branded glasses, so we think he’s pretty cool and I’m trying to finish the post I wrote about our night out but The Day Job keeps getting in the way.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, Monsieur and I went to the Ice Bar at Plateau in Canary Wharf, in order to be force-fed chocolate martinis and other vodka-licious delights with those splendid people at Splendid Communications. A post on that is on its way also. All I’ll say for now is that Smirnoff Black makes other major voddy brands taste like engine fuel.

Last week’s highlight was wedding-related. Monsieur and I are turning into Bridezilla and Groom of Doom as we kick off the New Year by trying to organise our nuptials. As I’ll explain to anyone with ears, I was born without the bride gene, but I really am trying. Honest, I am. Unfortunately, due to the closeted nature of a boom in British bureaucracy, all my careful planning to get the venue organised totally screwed up but it’s NOT MY FAULT.

Picture the following scene: Epicurienne tries to check available dates on ceremony venue. Ceremony venue tells her she can’t have dates until she registers intent with Monsieur. She calls local registry office to book a Saturday appointment to do just that but they won’t allow Saturday appointments unless there is a need for an emergency wedding. Apparently we’re not an emergency. Yet. So Monsieur and Epicurienne book a day’s leave and go to the registry office to register intent to marry. Everything’s proceeding as it should until the Nice Receptionist asks which room we’ve booked. Epic explains that no venue has been booked yet because the particular venue that has been chosen has insisted that it operates differently from other venues and therefore requires intent to be registered prior to setting a date. Nice Receptionist insists that this is not the case; that no intent can be formalised until a venue has been confirmed. Then she tells us we can always come back on a Saturday. (Receptionist immediately slides in the ratings from ‘nice’ to ‘bovine’.) Epic calls the venue people, hoping for some help from them. (Bunch of paper pushing losers springs to mind.) One venue person tells Epic that she must not register intent without a confirmed venue booking. Epic asks to confirm the booking immediately so as not to waste the day. Venue person (also of the bovine family) says she’s too busy to do that now and hangs up with a huffy sigh. Meanwhile, Monsieur thinks his future wife will never be able to organise the wedding and Epic tries in vain to convince her future husband that it really wasn’t her FAULT! The icing on the four tier wedding cake was when the Venue Person called back to say that they’re dealing with a new registrar who has been giving out misinformation and please would we accept their apologies for any inconvenience caused. Meanwhile, Epic’s Shirley Valentine fantasy of jumping on the Heathrow Express (alone – the fantasy only works with a solo traveller) and taking a plane to Wherever gathers momentum and it’s hard to keep her on London soil. Where’s that airship when it’s needed? In other words: Friday was complete and utter crap.

I have to say that staying engaged for the rest of my natural days is sounding more and more appealing, but I guess we should give it a shot, right?

So what might you be reading here soon? More about Venice, a LOT about Sicily where Monsieur and I spent New Year, some interesting facts about the Mafia, a review of Galler’s Kaori chocolate and my attempts to chase a little white ball around a golf course. In the meantime, here’s a song called Walking on Air, which is all about a creepy girl, sung by a Slovenian songstress called Kerli. When we were in Sicily, it played everywhere we went, especially on that bastion of the Italian radiowaves, RTL, where they insist on telling their listeners that they’re ‘Very Normal People’. Mmm hmm. Yep. Right you are.

(Double click twice on the You Tube to get past the embedding crash or link to the official Kerli MySpace site here

http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=35040750)

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. planetross says:

    I hope the wedding stuff works out. It sounds like a Catch-22 type scenario.
    Creepy video … but good creepy and catchy.

    Like

  2. Rax Lakhani says:

    Hey!

    Wow! You certainly have been busy. I’ve been following your movements around Italy and have to admit that I’ve been quite jealous!

    Have to say that the wedding planning isn’t really happening at my end either. My ‘Madamoiselle’ is busy shooting a film and hasn’t had a spare second to start thinking about things. As for me, I thought I’d better leave it to the bride to be (if I know what’s good for me!).

    Hopefully thing’ll calm down for you soon so that we can have a proper catch up.

    Take care 😉

    Like

  3. w1kkp says:

    Oh, I didn’t know you were getting married! How wonderful to counter these terrible, dark economic times with some personal joy! The hassle I guess is legendary but people still keep doing it! Am so sorry your job has been so difficult.

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  4. epicurienne says:

    PR – thank you for your good wishes. How about you organise the wedding for me and then all I have to do is turn up? When it comes to planning speeches, I’ll definitely be asking your advice because you’re so very excellent with words.
    Rax – Happy New Year! Once things calm down perhaps we should get together with our brides magazines and criticise all the honky dresses and shiny suits. Have you started watching Wedding TV yet? Last weekend they did UNIQUE weddings. Sounds good until you realise it’s about people who like dressing up – one was Western style with saloons and cowboys and another had an American Civil War theme. I guess things could be worse.
    Pat – as ever, thank you for your super supportive comment. As for the Day Job, yes, it’s tough right now but when you look at the ever-increasing unemployment statistics, I’m just happy to have a job to go to right now. The Pollyanna ‘glad game’ helps in these hellish times.

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  5. razzbuffnik says:

    I lived with Engogirl for 8 years before we got married. We’ve now been married for 5 years and all is right with the world.

    I hope you find the happiness that we’ve found. It’s not the ceremony that matters. It’s the fact you found each other.

    The video is the first Slovenian music I’ve ever heard. Engogirl and I have been getting excited about our up-coming trip lately and Slovenia is one of the countries we will visit.

    By the way, do you guys want to meet up somewhere like Bruges?

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  6. epicurienne says:

    Hi Razz – thank you for the wise words. I am so with you on the ceremony versus happiness thing. Slovenia is supposed to be beautiful but I haven’t yet made it there to see for myself so I’m relying on you for full and complete feedback.
    Would LOVE to meet up in Bruges. I’ve been to Brussels but not Bruges and it’s supposed to be beautiful. BTW – as pre-trip research I suggest you and Engogirl watch In Bruges. It’s a black comedy and I love its totally irreverent humour. There’s also a lot of swearing that goes on so if you’re allergic to that, you might need earplugs. E-mail me whenever you like with dates. Oooh so excited!

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  7. Yo! Yo! Yo soon to be la Madame de Monsieur!

    They make destination weddings for a reason: avoiding the six months of sheer organizational hell before the damn wedding.

    Good luck Mademoiselle! I wish you and Monsieur the very best.

    Bruges is nice to visit for one day at the most. The old part of town is the pretty and touristy area but you’ll be done after walking around for a few hours. May I suggest Brussels or Antwerp?

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  8. w1kkp says:

    That movie, “In Bruges” was actually quite good, I thought! Written by Martin McDonaugh who was first a playwright and who single-handedly wrote the play that freaked a whole group of my friends and family out, called “The Pillowman”. I love it, of course.

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  9. epicurienne says:

    Thank you Nathalie with a big huge H. Yes, I admit I was quite keen on getting married in Lake Como (not actually IN the lake, perhaps next to it) but it’s just as much as surprise to me as anyone that it’ll be traditional-ish. Re: Razz’s foray to Continental Europe, I hear you and I will chat with him about a good place to meet. I’m really excited about seeing them both!

    Well, Pat, you and I have the same sort of taste in films I think. Thanks for the background. Now I’ll have to read The Pillowman. Sounds scary in a good way. Either that or you’re nuts, in which case we still have a lot in common.

    Like

  10. Chris says:

    Greetings!

    How’s you?

    It’s been far too long!

    Drink soon to catch up?

    Hugs

    Chris

    Like

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