Tales for Tim

Posted by Jeni in Ad Infinitum | 24 March 2015

So I bumped into my ex-singing teacher.

We went into the new Costa's in Crowborough High street, which let me tell you is in a parlous state, thats the High Street not Costa's

The bra shop is closing.

The vegetable shop/tea room is half the size.

A little Indian restaurant has closed.

The Fire Station café has closed.

The gold shop has closed.

Somehow the shoe shop and jewellers have kept going, in between Boots, and WHSmiths. The feel of the high street is decidedly depressing - but I digress.

The singing teacher and I sat opposite each other, me nibbling on nuts, him with a lunchtime sandwich. He had to leave at twenty past so we had little time to catch up.

But he reads my blogs and I promised I would write one when I got home.

I didn't. Something to do with birthdays and broken bones, minimal food and shopping.

So it was decided that there would be a bit of a do. Sunday was an impromptu affair since we had all got together for B's birthday not two weeks hence and it was more about welcoming our Bali Boy home than me getting older.

Lyn and Tony couldn't make it, they were committed to a 96 year-old's Sunday get together. And since the party had come out of nowhere they couldn't cancel. So that was two down.

Jeff and Jill couldn't make it, otherwise engaged in Rye, the nearly-son had been up to his eyes being a dutiful son to his lovely mother, so that was minus three.

The family homeopath who has saved our lives countless times, was busy celebrating her 16-year-old-sons birthday which was marginally more important than my 66th.

Dan the man had been contacted last Thursday to go to Japan to work till tomorrow. Eating sesame-honey sausages in Sussex came in a pretty poor second to Nori Rolls in Nagoya.

By the time everything had been firmed up we were seven men down and counting.

I decided on fish pie and an aduki bean bake for the vegetarians.

Sausages and cakes brought by the niece and surrogate daughter.

Gifts and cards were piled up. Then Giles, the son-in-law from Bali turned up with bags and bountiful blessings.

9 hours later the family left. Jim to bed, Giles, B and me sat up till too late for anything to be sensible on Monday.

Which came round sooner than expected. So shattered were we from Bali tales and catch up anecdotes that walking was out of the question. Lying in the bath reading, and snoozing in the afternoon was the call of the day. A curry, PRIDE the film, then INTO THE WOODS and then the soft pillow with my head indentation called. i was out before you could say turn off the light.

And then this morning arrived. My birthday. Took the old git to the station, but he was released early as there was a company bereavement. Horrid. He joined us for our meeting with the friendly homeopath. Lunch in the new 'Patisserie Valerie's' which is a shadow of the original in Dean Street, Soho. Five of us with bitter coffee and mille feuilles. A BLT for the hungry Thespian and some other rubbish for everybody else.

Home to a lot of laughing on the rug then the Bali Boy went to Brighton on the bus and the dawter played all my fave songs so I could have my very own private disco.

She went off for a massage, the 'oosbind heated up yesterdays curry ( which was back to the 'Rose of Bengals' best ) and I went to the attic to feel normal again.

I have a shrine in my work room, each birthday and High Holiday something else joins the feathers and crystals. This birthday has seen a flock of red paper birds from Brooklyn strung between the candelabra and the picture hook opposite. Soon my eyrie will have guided tours.

It's now 21.41, we're all full of too much of everything and my birth day has turned into my birth night. When my mother was alive it was as much about her and the birthing experience as well as mine for being birthed. At 66 I have my memories to myself. 2.20a.m. on March 24th 1949 and out I came ready for the fray.

I'm still fighting.

Today has been wonderful, I am really looking forward to resuming normal service as soon as possible. If you can call the first visit to the cottage hospital for physiotherapy normal. I'm told if I don't get this elbow under control I'll never be able to straighten it and then bang goes yoga. So I'm outta here for 1.30. to meet Russell the mover and shaker.

To all my birthday well wishers, thank you for bothering. I may be older than you but when it comes to birthdays I'm still a kid .

So now I'm off to drink the last of the birthday bubbles, because I can.

Jeni Barnett tells of her scrumptious time at Good Food Live in her first audiobook! Download NOW from iTunes


1. At March 25, 2015 10:00 AM 'L' wrote:

Mazel Tov young lady! You are a woman in her prime, full of beauty and life.

May you be blessed with many enjoyable, happy and healthy years to come. All the best with your elbow too.

Hugs & kisses


2. At April 11, 2015 9:42 PM Poppy peewee wrote:

Jeni where are you ?
Missing your blogs about your varied life in and around London and the South-East.

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