Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Shows, shopping and shock.

And it was all going so well. Leaving Hubby in charge of the little ones with only the most negligible of pouts, my twelve year old and I had a ripping time in London; for a start instead of climbing all over me on the train, she was content to sit and read her book leaving me to read mine. She went and bought the coffees and, even better, went to the loo by herself. The few hours sped by and before you could say, big smoke, we were in it. Down the tube and up the escalators we went until we found our accommodation in Pimlico. Quickly dropping our bags, I dressed for the evening even though it was only mid afternoon, but, knowing how long it takes to go anywhere in central London, I knew that whilst being slightly common to wear dangly, sparkly earrings before 6pm – I had no alternative as there was no way we’d have time to come back again and change.
We took our seats in a Thai restaurant then with me looking a little hookeresque and my daughter shaking her head in shame.
“God mum, you look well, so overdressed”.
“Well what choice did I have? I could hardly go and see Lee Mead in my Tesco skirt now could I?” and I went back to the menu.
“Mum, Lee Mead is not the Pope you know. You haven’t been granted a private audience with him”.
“Well I’m still going to try and get his autograph - ‘spring rolls, green curry and Tom Yam soup please’ – so there”.
My daughter just rolled her eyes and sipped her lemonade.
“Nice restaurant” I said looking around at the gilded dragons and coolie hats decorating the wall.
“ Mum, don’t change the subject, its 2.15 and you are wearing what can only be described as dodgy cocktail lounge attire with perfume to match.” And she waved her menu rather dramatically under her nose.
“It’s Poison”.
“You’re telling me”, she added pulling sick faces.
“Christian Dior, if you don’t mind. Thankyou”. The waitress laid out steaming bowls of curry, rice and spring rolls before us.
“Besides”, I said between mouthfuls, “it’s nice to have a chance to dress up. I’m usually covered in something one of your sisters has left behind.” Rather dramatically there was a pop and a flash and all the lights and music went out.
Some foul language exploded from the large party of city brokers who sat at the next table realising they would not know receive their lunches but no matter how much the owner fiddled with his fuse box the electrics refused to come back on and the city men had to make do with their bottle of wine and bowl of prawn crackers.
We left them to it, cursing and shouting – it must be all that practice on the trading floor that does it, that and the stress of their shares falling – and went on our merry way. Emerging from the Knightsbridge tube we went into Harrods and spent a very happy couple of hours in what has become a shrine to bad taste.
Perhaps it is the Jordan’s and WAG’s of this world who buys them, but who else would need a refrigerator with diamonds running down the length of it, or a floral washing machine or a £375 baby bouncy chair or indeed a fuchsia pink, velvet cat basket also complete with diamonds and tulle curtains? It was absolutely staggering. Our final treat was a visit to the ice-cream parlour, where at £10.50 a pop, we shared an enormous yet glorious concoction of various ice-creams, hot chocolate sauce, meringue, hazelnuts and wafers. Luckily I was surrounded by rich foreigners in huge flashy sunglasses, deep tans, deeper makeup, jangling jewellery, designer handbags and vertiginous heels,
“Hey mum”, whispered my daughter “You look positively understated”
Later we meandered around Covent Garden before finally taking our seats at the Adelphi. How many superlatives are there? The show was fab, fantastic, amazing and wonderful and at the end I was overcome with inhibition and stood up swinging and clapping to the music.
“Sit down”, my daughter hissed, dragging at my top but I cared not a jot, “Go, go, go Joseph”, I sang but buy this time I’d been joined by another few er, middle aged ladies all swaying to the beat and as the ticker tape confetti fell at the crescendo I could understand how people swoon at evangelical events.
The piece de resistance was of course later photographing Lee Mead on my mobile phone.
“Must we hang around the stage door mum?” but even she shut up when Mr Mead commented on her ‘Joseph’ vest and wished her a Happy Birthday.
The following morning after a slap up breakfast at a local taxi driver’s greasy spoon cafĂ©, we spent another hilarious couple of hours at the Tate. Art? My foot. I’ll give you installation.
On our return to Plymouth I was delighted to find my son and heir safely ensconced in his bedroom having spent the previous week in Bury St Edmunds where he had travelled to alone, traversing London’s tube and finding various railway stations. I was very proud of him, especially when the mother of his friends rang to say he’d been a joy to host. Impeccable manners, sociable, helpful etc etc.
“Great to see you ma, back in a minute” and kissing me he went up the road to tell his best buddy all about his adventure.You’ll understand my chagrin then when minutes later he returned clutching his cheek and with a policeman in tow. Apparently some local yob had taken a dislike to his face and thus proceeded to punch it. “May I strongly suggest you do not attempt any retaliation sir, because the repercussions will be grave indeed”. Hubby looked defeated but my boy, well he looked literally and metaphorically beaten.


Anonymous said...


Woah, so sorry to here that last comment about your son! My son is only 11 so it is a bit scary when you here about nasty things like that happening. You must be so proud of him too, lreading your post.

Speaking of happier things ... as you enjoyed the Joseph show so much I thought you might like to visit our website at www.leemead.org.uk and say hello. We are just a bunch of ladies who admire Lee and his talents. It’s a very friendly place and you are very welcome to join. You can always just lurk for a bit beforehand while you decide if you like us or not!

My name is JackieStockton and I am Moderator on the forum. If you decide to join us please say hello.

Alice Band said...

Hi Anonymous! Glad to know there are a few other barmy old ladies out there like me!! Pass on my reagrds to Lee, tell i thought he was fab!

Mopsa said...

I feel so old! Who is Lee Mead? Dressing up for the theatre seems to be no longer expected, so it's nice to know one can still do the sparkly earring thing with gusto - go girl! And talk about coming back to earth with a bump - your poor boy.

enidd said...

enidd has no idea who lee mead is either, but she's glad you had such a good time seeing him. and the ice cream sounds good too.

belle said...

I have to add my ignorance of Lee Mead to enidd and mopsa ... but I would hazard a guess that he was the one that won the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat competition.
Sounds a fun time

Alice Band said...

Mopsa, enidd and Belle - you have made me admit to wacthing Saturday night talent shows on BBC!! Yes Lee Mead is the guy who won the role of Joseph in the J and His ATD. But bless, he's fantastic. The ice cream by the way was fab, although a American chap sitting opposite us with his three kids all under 7, had one each at £10.95! and big enough for three to share! Bloody Nora..

Sally Lomax said...

You made me laugh with the "bling before 6 story".

I love it when our teenagers and nearly teenagers know so much about fashion....

I keep reminding them though that in just over 10 year's time, ED will be 27. Shortly after that, she'll be thirty.

And we all know how quickly the next ten years fly by.

And I'll be having a quiet giggle to myself when they hit forty and their own teenage daughters are making little "commnents" about thier attire........

Awful about your son. Trouble is, they have to be kids, so all you can do is hope that it won't happen again or at least not with worse consequnces. Hope he's ok now....

evoexplorer said...

always be patient in our life..
have a nice day !!

Sally's ED! said...

I can't believe you saw Lee Mead!!!!
Mum and I were rooting for him all the way through Any Dream Will Do!!!!!!
AAAAh jealous!:P
glad you had fun!