It's 10.30pm and I'm only just returning home. I left the house eleven hours ago. I felt a very strong sense of a universe shifting this morning when I got up. The effort I've been putting into networking and job hunting finally started to reap dividends with a few little nibbles whilst I sat at the kitchen table this morning, calmly working my way through the eleventh draft of Brass. I actually made a couple of mini-breakthroughs in the Brass department as well, so by lunch time I was actually feeling fairly buoyant.
As if to compound my sense of optimism, three letters came through the post from the Jobseeker's Allowance people, reminding me that the £0 they'd paid me in the month that I'd attempted to sign on should be classed as taxable income. Great. I'll tell my accountant to make sure that my yearly income is adjusted by £0. Quite why there's no one in these offices who can point out what a silly waste of paper sending these sorts of letters is, I've no idea. And that someone thought it wise to compound the problem by sending the letter in triplicate almost beggars belief! Frankly, if you're looking to save money on the benefits system in this country, instead of taking benefits away from people who can ill afford to lose them, I'd suggest a little look at how many useless, functionally illiterate people wander around these DSS offices and how much pointless admin gets sent through the post by computers. It's disgusting really.
I went into Central London this afternoon to meet an old friend who is running a corporate filmmaking company. When I first worked with him he was about 22, and we all knew he would be a millionaire at least by the end of his life and probably a great deal sooner! His offices - which are in Covent Garden - are absolutely stunning with edit suites and wooden floorboards and fabulous views over Neal's Yard. I felt like a proud mother when I walked in! He's married now and has a house in Ealing. A proper grown up.
Nathan and I had a late lunch together at Stock Pot. I had a blueberry and apple pie whilst Nathan had the spaghetti bolognese he always eats in that place!
From Central London I took the tube to Belsize Park and walked down past the Royal Free (dodging Ebola patients) to Gospel Oak for a rehearsal with the Fleet Singers. It was their last practice before the concert on Sunday and things are slowly coming together. I was particularly proud of the tenors and basses today. The altos rather disappeared into their shells again, which was a shame, because when you coax them out, they're capable of making the most beautiful sounds. They'll get there! They just need an injection of confidence.
I walked most of the way home. That part of town is a bit of a tricky place to get to via public transport. I would have walked even further, but the Heath looked a little murky and I was carrying a computer, so opted to take a bus from the bottom of Highgate West Hill up into the village, from whence I walked down the hill and back home.