Weeknote 22

Something clicked in my head last week. In a good way. I think maybe knowing that I’d booked the right assessment and getting that changed and starting to accept that is what did it. And something about the election being called last week settled my head.

The long weekend was a nice mixture of things:

  • productive - getting the house packed up and ready for things to go into storage
  • family time - it was my in-laws 40th wedding anniversary and everyone got together for a meal in a restaurant and that was really lovely
  • gardening - the work just never ends
  • relaxing - so very nearly done with my current book

What I did this week

Well, I started the process of easing back into work.


I’m not doing early starts, I’m very groggy and super achy in the morning (joints, thanks peri-menopause!) and I’m not doing full days.

And my request to move down to 4 days a week has been approved. That starts next week.

I caught up on emails and Slack. And a bunch of admin around my time off.

I had a chat with Kate about how I’ll ease back in and we have a broad plan for that. Couple of good chats with my boss. Chats with a couple of the team to see how things have been going.

I have a list of things to start to think about and maybe even start to develop into a few slide decks to start to share ideas. Something I didn’t have time to do before.

I’ve spent a few hours with our lovely group of TPX Senior Partners Major Projects. Sharing our pains and starting to work on a few internal TPX challenges/issues. A couple of things I’m really keen to get involved with as they are very firmly in my wheelhouse. And I’ll be supporting some of our teams around pre-election issues. It is one of my specialist subjects after all.

I probably did too much work yesterday. The biggest mistake I made was bouncing straight from one challenging hour long meeting to another. That is a thing I cannot repeat. My head is going to need gaps in between meetings to process and stop.

What I can’t talk about

I don’t want to stop doing weeknotes, I find the practice helps to sort my head out at the end of the week. But I won’t be able to talk about the details of any of the work that the team are still doing.

Pre-election period and all that.

What I’ve been thinking about


The run up. The post-election period. The bonfire of the quangos. Living through all that. I’m still a bit scarred.

Some if it was interesting and exciting - all the work I did in Cabinet Office with writing and co-ordinating the first ever pre-election period social media guidance. Running propriety training and triage for all comms and marketing. That was an almost year long process of prepping a very different civil service. And one of my favourite stories of being a civil servant that I can’t share here.

Bonfire of the quangos was one of the WORST experiences I’ve ever been through. Anyone who was in an ALB that was cut will remember. But I think the cutting of the Central Office of Information was possibly one of the worst run, most pointless, brutal, wrong things ever done.

What I’ll do next week

More easing back in at work. Time for thinking and doing some proper work. Gentle, gentle, gentle.

Work on the house kicks off on Monday morning at 8am. We’ll do a full site walkthrough with the builders. They’ll start demolition. An electrician should appear to laugh at how awful our electrics are and figure out how to make this work.

We’re going to have to figure out where we relocate to to work. Not a chance of staying the house. We’ve been so pre-occupied with packing and clearing out the studio that we’ve not even thought about this yet.

And we have house guests next weekend which will be a nice distraction from the chaos

What I’ve been reading and watching

Discovery. Thank god it’s over tonight, not been impressed with this last series at all.

Still working through Station 19. Which has gotten slightly better but is still pretty awful.

We’ve started watching Doctor Who again. There is something so incredibly watchable about Ncuti Gatwa. And 73 Yards was absolutely cracking last week. Grown up and creepy and clever.

I’m excited that Lady Parts is back on Channel4 and Queen kicks off really soon. And I’ve got a growing list of things we need to catch up on or are starting soon. Outer Range and The Boys. The Bear restarting. And a long list of other things that I really ought to write down.

I’ve just about finished reading Boy Parts by Eliza Clark. So very dark and disturbing. But so well written. My goal for this afternoon is to finish this up.


Recovery continues. She had her first physio session, take home exercises to start strengthening her back. No doggy in a life vest in a pool just yet....

What’s flowering

Literally all the roses. Well, all but 4 [dog rose is just about there, the others are too new this year to have started budding but I’m hoping later in the summer we’ll get something.]