Monday, April 23, 2007

"Going out", it's the new "staying in"

I did four nights out last week and strangely feel alright. I must be fitter and happier than I feared. They weren't just swift drinks after work, but full blown formal dinners with drinks at 7, carriages at midnight and in three cases they were black tie as well.

1. CBI dinner in Manchester on Tuesday was OK, met some good people, listened to a dreary speaker, got a good story lined up, but it felt like work.

2. Our property awards in Cardiff on Thursday was a triumph. We pulled a great crowd together and there was a great energy in the room. Our editor down there, Wyn Jenkins, is a top bloke with a good following in the business community. We found Wyn because my deputy editor Lisa Miles used to work with him and rates him - which is praise indeed! I wanted to put an ad in Press Gazette that said - "Patriotic Welsh bloke needed, must have an accent like Neil Kinnock, be mad on rugby and have ruddy cheeks. Ability to spell would be an advantage. " I got better than that, he's all of this and more. It was brilliant to watch him work on Thursday.

3. The Marple Athletic JFC fundraiser at Mellor Golf Club was a ripping night. Looks like the money raised should really help the club. One thing though. Jason Isaacs might be able to coach kids football teams with distinction, he may be able to make the kids idolise him. Fair enough. And yes, he can probably play football a bit himself. Obviously he can also play the guitar in his absolutely superb band, A Few Good Men. And he sings lead vocals. And yes, he's a good looking bloke. I just don't need to hear it from every other woman in Marple. Seriously, great night out!

4. All of that didn't leave much in the tank for the Hurstwood Charity Night at the Midland Hotel in Manchester on Saturday. But we soldiered on. Our friends Stephen and Nicola Ashworth have dug deep to support Derian House, a childen's hospice in Lancashire. The money they raised on Saturday was astounding. We were delighted to play our part by offering a special Insider prize for auction.

It was clear to us as we watched from our taxi on Saturday that we socialise in something of a rarified atmosphere. What we witnessed on the streets of Manchester made us grateful we don't have daughters, but we were also horrified at the spectacle of the human zoo all around us. Then, I get to see this, an account on the Manchester Confidential website about the aftermath of a fight outside one of Manchester's so-called upmarket bars.

And so, on it goes. It's another hectic one this week, but we are definitely chilling out this weekend with a takeaway, a nice bottle of wine and a DVD. Staying in will be the new going out for us and that's how we like it.

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