We're on our way back from Julie and Sam's where we've been doing Craft and Cake. It's been a much-needed break, although I was secretly working on Brass documents during the afternoon, proof-reading the clutch of piano/ vocal scores I'd spent the morning printing out.
Today's crafters were working on a variety of projects. Tina was even crocheting a carpet for a tent out of multi-coloured garden string, which I thought was rather ingenious. Elsewhere in the room, people were knitting socks and scarfs. We ate Julie-made salted-caramel eclairs and Sam-made pasta with cream and peas. There was a fruit cake, home-made bread and pots and pots of tea.
We watched the first episode of Strictly Come Dancing, and it seems the BBC are using the word "celebrity" in inverted commas this year... That, or I'm getting very old! I had no idea who anyone was. None of us did. In most cases we were forced to listen very carefully to the one-line description of participants as they sashayed down the staircases. "Bronze medal-winning Olympic boxer, X," "Random female sports presenter, Y" "Token BME presenter from Country File, Z..." Next year they'll be featuring the entire cast of Gogglebox, or running a reality show to turn "real people" into the celebrities they need. There was one moment when all the "stars" were asked to hold up circular question marks in front of their faces whilst the professional dancers walked in. On a count of three, they revealed themselves, to much cheering from the pros. I'm sure it must have been acting. If that rabble of D-listers (including the woefully homophobic Jamelia) had unveiled themselves to me, I'd have been confused and then distinctly underwhelmed!
Still, the great joy about Strictly, is being able to see Claudia Winkleman back on our television screens. She's a hugely talented presenter in my view and I'm genuinely really proud of the BBC for allowing two women to co-host a prime time Saturday night entertainment show. It's so much more refreshing than the deeply misogynist cliche of the old sleazy comedian standing with a pretty young floozy who's sole task is to gurn, pout and twitter. It's only taken the BBC about eighty years to realise the errors of their ways, but, as my Mum used to say, "better late than never..."