From Amsterdam to North Cadbury and salon international
Weekly blog – Take 2
Well, I spent a good 2 hours writing my blog this week only to not save it – grrrrrrr!!! So hence the take 2…
Let’s start with my fantastic trip away with the girls… Although we called it our gender neutral weekend this time as Gary was part of the gang.
This is always a reality check, we’ve been friends for over 20 years, what great fun. From the minute we meet up it’s all systems go.
Most of us arrived Friday evening with MarnieT being the first surprise of the weekend for Anne-Marie whose 50th we were celebrating. We haven’t all been together since MarnieT had her big birthday in France so when we all walked in together Anne-Marie was totally blown away at the sight of MarnieT – it was brilliant!
We went to visit Donna and Gary for nibbles, drinks and the first of many discos; thank you to Donna for organizing such an amazing weekend, delicious restaurant, walks, dancing and our canal ride. MarnieT our mostly vegi girl announced that morning she was not drinking any more orders a G&T at 11am and after listening to the vegi option orders rare steak for dinner go girl!
The second surprise for Anne-Marie was Dianne arriving for a fleeting 36 hours as she had to fly to Spain for her Mother in-law’s 70th. Hats off to Dianne – she was up at 4am to be with us for breakfast. Looking fab in her wool dress she proudly announces she is becoming a dress girl. (Setting the scene here…)
SO… The canal ride: headed up by the lovely Gary (I say lovely as he had a lot of pressure to put eight women on the boat and expect them to stay amused for two hours), Bollinger in hand, I think he thought he had this nailed, and he certainly did for the first 45 minutes – the sun was shining, we’re floating along, taking in the architecture and really enjoying seeing Amsterdam from this angle, (Anne Frank’s house, the museums) it really was brilliant.
But without fail on every girly weekend (or this year we’re calling it gender neutral weekend) there is a drama that’s never really caused by us.
We were sailing down the canal and Donna mentions that these are her favorite row of houses, not sure she’s ever sailed down there before and we did find out later that she walks over the bridge looking down at the row of houses. Further down is another bridge; Jackie yells out “is this bridge tall enough for us?” and Gary answers with a big smile, of course 10 seconds later he is yelling “duck, we’re not going to make it!”
To the side of us and to our shame an entire pub have their cameras out taking pictures of us, these nutters going under a bridge that was clearly not designed to go under. It was really claustrophobic and a little scary.
Now we are heading down the canal, being told off for going the wrong way, lost, then we hit open water, we are now off piste (well, on the Amstel river out of the safety of the quiet canals…) and I ask Gary “are we okay?” and get a big smile and nervous “yes of course.”
Google maps are out and they’re trying to work out where we are and how do we get back into the canal system… a confident Gary announces we are 20 mins away from the boathouse.
We all relax for a moment.
In the distance it starts getting really dark, big clouds are building up. Someone said “is it going to rain?” to the reply of “Of course not” – within a minute a flash hurricane hits us and seriously it felt like a hurricane; wind was whipping us from all directions and the heavens opened to release a deluge of rain onto us.
Gray tried to take cover in the willow tree but the wind was so strong, he only managed to protect himself leaving the rest of us to virtually drown. We were all laughing so much, not sure if this was nervousness or pure fear making us laugh. I look up and the people on the bank taking cover under the willow tree were laughing and filming us – again we looked like total nutters on the canal.
Throughout the storm, I was thinking what if it stays like this all night what will we do; we would have to abandon ship. Thank goodness the storm left as quickly as it arrived.
Then we were treated to the most spectacular rainbow, and while recovering from our trauma started snapping pictures of it when Diane pipes up “F**k the rainbow, I’m wearing wool!” She’d been sitting in the same spot and not moved. We shouldn’t have laughed so much but her face said it all, she looked like Queen Victoria. When she stood up the water that came out of her dress was unbelievable.
We were finally back on track and heading back to the boat shed. All the early talk of beers and Bittenballen (amazing Dutch food) when we got back went out the window; it was straight back to our apartments for showers, warm up and a rest. We reconvened later for dinner and a dance
off. Diane was back in jeans that evening, the dress experiment was over. I still highly recommend the canal trip though. Thanks gang, always a brilliant laugh, missing you all now.
This weekend I was at Anna and Simon’s wedding in North Cadbury – WOW is all I can say. We stayed in the most overwhelming house, some parts of it 600 years old, every room was stunning and different, the smell was so distinct and lovely, it had a pool, Jacuzzi, and golf that you tee off from the roof. And in the basement there was a casino, DJ box and dance floor.
With 11 heads of hair to do the morning of the wedding it was all systems go. The girls all looked so beautiful. The church was also 600 years old and on the grounds, it was a beautiful service and even though I public speak a lot I was so nervous doing my reading – you need to get it spot on, it felt like I was having a hot flush! Maybe I was? Eeek!
The whole wedding from start to finish was amazing, except I nearly killed the bride. OMG. I picked up a cylinder to
wards the end of the evening, so let’s face it a little bit of champagne had been consumed. With
a puzzled “how does this work” I somehow activated it and bang – a billion little stars exploded right into Anna’s face and she hit the ground. I just wanted the ground to swallow me up. Anna, if you’re reading this I am still apologising. We did sort Anna out and continued dancing, me now on my best best behaviour.
So before all of this I attended Michael Clark’s ‘to a simple rock and roll.. song’ at the Barbican. It was a great performance and the last time we will see him, as this is his final show. I do love modern dance, the way they move, the muscle definition is extraordinary. Thank you Ann.
Friday was Liesl’s 40th birthday party but after a day of clients I had to nip over to ExCel to check the Fellowship stage build for Salon International. And what can I say, it looked amazing, really cool all in black with fantastic lighting, ready for a great weekend. Then it was back to the west end to take the team out for drinks; they’d chosen a really cool champagne bar called Swift on Old Crompton St – now my new favourite bar. So much for not having a late night and I had to get back to the ExCel center.
As always Salon International was full on, I was running between two stages presenting on Viviscal and the Fellowship stage. Our very own Sophia Osborne rocked her looks with fab model Georgina. As always there were lots of shows to attend and the Tribute show was brilliant at the Novello Theatre. Thanks to Nicky Pope and Simon Shaw at Wahl for the invite. It was great to catch up with Charles Worthington my old boss, Sam my manger from Charles Worthington and Issy her daughter, along with loads of other people during the day. I also managed to see Ky Wilson on the BaByliss stage; I really enjoyed it and the evenings were filled with catching up with everyone – it was great to see Gary and Jayne Wild all the way from Oz. I was delighted to find out the my good friend’s daughter who was signed with Vivian’s model agency in Australia had her first paid modeling job with Jayne for GHD.
With Salon International over for another year, next I had a group of Australians from Sydney in on the Wednesday for a seminar and they were brilliant, hanging onto every word. I arranged for them to see Johanna Cree-Brown at Trevor Sorbie and then over to Knightsbridge for a chat with Mr. Errol Douglas MBE.
In the afternoon I was filming with London Live for Perfect Wedding with Michelle Royle and you’ll be able to catch this on TV in mid November.
Now we are back to the beginning of when all of this started…
After a lovely weekend relaxing with a little bit of shopping, walking, drinking and a whole lot of sleeping, I’m ready to take on the next few weeks. I’ve done a shoot with Curlformers and the amazing team with Barry and Kate Jeffery, it was great fun and the hair looked amazing so can’t wait to share that with you.
So, finished again. I hope you feel my pain in writing this twice and I hope you’ve enjoyed it. Until next time, Karine x