Katherine Ryan is a Canadian single mum to a 9 year-old girl. They live in a flat in London with a “glitter room” and a “floral” room. She’s also one of the best comedians in the UK.
After a four and half hour coach journey I couldn’t wait to get off the smelly thing. But then it took me hours instead of half an hour to get to my friend’s fancy penthouse in Fulham. She works in a pharmaceutical sales company. She is the most organised person I know. When we went to Vietnam she had a spreadsheet for the hotels and one for the flights. It was supposed to take half an hour. However, at least three tube lines were having improvement works, so the Circle line was out. I needed to take the District Line (the green one) to Parsons Green, but it didn’t go that far. So I tried to take a taxi, but I was near the Chelsea ground. It just happened to be Chelsea vs Liverpool, so all the taxis were cancelling on me because roads were blocked off.
Finally I stopped one the traditional way. The charming cabbie said he wasn’t going to work that day because of the match. I was so relieved to be rescued after hours of trudging around with all my bags, confused and lost.
My friend has a lovely relaxing flat. We compared rents and she couldn’t believe how little I pay in comparison. She had a lovely balcony with a city view. I enjoyed sipping tea there in the morning.
I got myself a Kir Royale cocktail and we settled down for the concert. There was a lovely vocal performance from the London Gay Mens Chorus with great acapella arrangements.
Katherine Ryan was hilarious. She was a natural, sourcing material from people in the crowd. It was very engaging. She somehow found someone from her home town in Canada and a single mum of three boys. She pondered the idea of having a boyfriend. She is 35 and probably earns a pretty packet. The Garrick Theatre in Leicester Square was a good venue, you felt like you were in her sitting room. It was at least half an hour before Katherine started recycling her gags but she created new material on the spot too. Have a look at her on YouTube. My friend and I approve of her fearless feminist ethos and gutsy life perspective. She makes me feel empowered and inspired. Catch her on tour this month and beyond on her Glitter Room tour.
I also went to a dress agency near my friend’s flat. It was run by a charming Iranian woman and savvy saleswoman, who talked me into buying two designer dresses and a jacket which I thought was nice for social occasions but which my Chelsea-based sister has said is only suitable for interviews. I grimaced at the handbags made out of every kind of animal and the furs, from mink to fox. I got an embroidered blue wool dress which was so vintage it was actually made in the 1950s and an Italian leather and suede red and black dress, which I wore for the concert.
On Sunday morning I went out for brunch with my friend and my sister and then visited her new flat.
I was hoping to do something touristy for the rest of the day, but my friend wanted to go to the gym. She was tired from moving flats and needed a boost. For her, this involves slogging it out at the gym. For me it is going to a coffee shop and having a brew. Each to their own.
I felt good for her boot camp gym workout though. She is a natural personal trainer, shouting “no pain no gain!” and “come on, you’re not done yet!” as I groan under the strain. I wrestle with a 10 kg weight while she does a 20 kg weight for the same time. She looks petite and dainty but it is just an illusion. She could snap your wrist with one hand. Bit scary.
For 2019, I am planning a ski holiday to France or Austria in February and Chile next summer for the solar eclipse, keep checking this blog for holiday reports next year…