i can see for miles and miles…

By amy ~ December 12th, 2013 @ 9:27 pm

belfast5th…because I finally have new glasses! Which will be a blessed relief to at least a handful of folk who I’ve inadvertently bumped into, headbutted or spent an age trying to get a condom on because I had it the wrong way and couldn’t tell. New Glasses are courtesy of Prada and thus very chi-chi indeed, although not a little bit huge compared to the old ones (and had they tinted lenses too would doubtless have drawn more than one Bono comparison by now) but as I now haven’t had a headache in over a week, I care not.

Having not long returned from the man himself’s home town by way of a windswept Belfast, I can confidently say that last Friday lunchtime was one of those thankfully few occasions where it was not only nice, but truly blissful to be home following one not-quite-disaster after another including an ill thought out hotel location (yes, my fault), appalling weather (not my fault) and a series of timewasters so frustrating and annoying that I very nearly threw in the towel, switched off my phone and jumped on one of the tourist buses to the Giant’s Causeway (I made it as far as Nando’s). The situation was not aided in any way by the collapse on the Wednesday afternoon of the Escort Ireland site (nobody’s fault, apparently), which won’t be particularly familiar to punters here but is pretty much the only advertising resource that anybody there is likely to get any work from, bar the occasional renegade from good old Adultwork (which for all its many faults comparatively operates like Amazon in terms of ease of use, reliability and fairness), but thankfully, it was all OK in the end and the actual genuine punters who chose to appear were as charming as ever.dublin3rdFast forward to this week, and I have this evening emerged relatively unscathed from a six day maelstrom of online grocery shopping (thankfully, the keenly sought after Tesco.com Christmas delivery slot was secured without incident whilst in Belfast, or I believe I would have wept) gift wrapping, card writing, tree wrangling and finally (as of today) mince pie baking in between packing a suitcase roughly the size of a Volkswagen for the next eight days – London beckons, and whilst I will be persona non grata until Sunday, the fun most definitely starts tomorrow when I have live music and real ale plans in Brixton preceded by some serious barbecue plans in Soho – woohoo!

Speaking of Soho, and particularly to those (like me) who are fond of it exactly as it is, not to mention those ladies who make a living from the walk ups and working flats which have been part of the Soho community for many years now, some may not be aware that following raids conducted on the 4th of December by two hundred or so police officers (plus assorted media degenerates who apparently just happened to be passing) a large part of this traditional Soho landscape is under threat, not to mention the livelihoods of the folk just trying to support themselves in the way they choose and bothering no one; no one that is, except the property developers who want them out so that a Times Square-style sanitisation can be carried out. Women were handcuffed whilst premises were searched, others were bullied into accepting cautions they didn’t understand and others still had identifiable photographs published by the press. Soho is one of the safest places to work, or at least it was. The walk ups are only the start – there are independent shops and cafés, theatres, LGBT venues and adult shops and cinemas, or at least what’s left of them. The talented folk behind my 40th birthday *ongoing* tattoo are there and the parlour has been since the 1970s, although if the Walker’s Court redevelopment goes ahead they may not be for much longer. Does anybody really want all this replaced with another Westfield? Well I don’t.

Anybody finding this as objectionable as I do, whether in the name of sex worker safety or even just to try and ensure there’s one less McDonalds in the world, please sign the petition here and we can hope for some really good news in the New Year. Fingers crossed.

To the coming days and most will have noticed already the Christmas/New Year hours are up and rolling, but in addition the phone will be off both tomorrow and Saturday although emails will be checked when I get a minute. All tiresome preparation is done, the fishes are clean and tidy and after a weekend of festive non-work fun (almost certainly involving a return to Shake Shack, a look at Selfridges Christmas windows and at least one viewing of It’s A Wonderful Life) I will be happily ensconced in first Victoria and then the South Bank for the annual Christmas week – availability is dwindling now, but there’s still plenty dotted about for the (relatively) flexible!

Update mid-week – watch this space!Scarborough-20131212-02131

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