Half a holiday

I sort of had half a holiday this week due to the heatwave. It was so warm that Karen decided it was better for me to stay in Margate where I could keep cool. She lent me her hat but it was a touch big.

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Luckily for Karen, she was able to cool off when she got home from work and had a rather lovely paddle, even more appreciated because Stratford station was rammed with West Ham fans which was no fun trying to get through that many people.

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Unfortunately, the holiday didn’t last the week (hence why it was half a holiday) and Karen made me go back to work on Friday so she had someone to talk to. I found a different spot to sit on but she insisted I do some typing as well. That was a bit difficult though due to my short arms.

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Thankfully it was only for one day and Saturday I got to enjoy the beach again. I did have to share it with some seagulls but they weren’t too close.

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We then had a trip to Canterbury which is the first time I’ve been there apart from going through on the train. Its a rather nice town with lots of lovely historic buildings but also lots of cobblestones.

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Sunday was sleep day and pottering at home as well as a stunning Sunday lunch at The Hoy. No pictures of that, though, after my behaviour last time, but I have got some pictures of the walk back. It was low tide and the closest I have got to the harbour arm without being on it.  The weather wasn’t quite as nice but it was good that it was a bit cooler again. I needed a bit of a rest on the way home and found a nice rock pool which looked like a collection of islands.

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I then got another bit of a holiday as it was bank holiday on the Monday and, quite unlike British weather, the sun was shining.  We went to the Turner Contemporary to look at the exhibition Seeing Round Corners which was good – a real eclectic mix of artists and materials with some quite famous names. Some work was extraordinarily talented but other pieces I think I could have done myself. Photos weren’t allowed in the gallery but there was a big polo mint outside.

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When we got home, I helped Karen wrap up a certain someone’s birthday present, although not sure how much help I was apart from hanging onto the sellotape. I nearly got wrapped up in the paper which certainly would have surprised the recipient!

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Talking of surprises, Karen also had a couple in store for me as well as she thought I needed a new hobby. The Isle of Man post office has issued some stamps which she thought I’d like – one is the Aardman 40th anniversary and the other is the Year of the Monkey. Best I get an album now so that I can keep them safe.

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So, after that half a holiday, Karen told me that I had a full holiday coming up when we’re going to the Isle of Man. This means that I’ll be able to visit the same places as Morph. I think that’s where Karen gets inspiration from for me as we’re quite similar colour, although Morph is far more flexible than me and a bit older. The holiday is a few weeks away yet but getting ever closer.

Yo-Yo

Well its been a rather busy week, partly because Karen kept taking me to and from the office (hence the yo-yo title), so that was rather tiring. Its just as well she has a nice, comfortable space for me in her bag, otherwise it would have been even more tiring.

It all started on Tuesday evening and, rather than leave me in the office as normal, Karen decided that I had to go home with her. At Stratford International station there were some replicas of landmarks of London and they were the perfect size for me. Can you guess which ones they are?

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So, after having to work at home on Wednesday rather than looking out of the window like I wanted, I then had get up early for the second time this week to go back into the office. The benefit though was a beautiful sunrise, even if it was a bit breezy.

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It was then back home again on Thursday night and I thought that was it for early starts until the weekend but Karen decided she wanted to be in the office on Friday. At the station they were getting ready for Margate Pride, which was on Saturday, although I think the flags had been a bit over loved.

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I did manage to fit in a breakfast with Paul and it was rather great to catch up with all the news.

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Then, at long last, it was Friday evening and time to go home. I thought it would be an early finish but there’s always something that Karen just wants to finish off. This time around, I saw sunset when I got home (view from the lounge).

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Summer had arrived on Saturday which made me rather excitable and, as I started misbehaving, I got a ride in a police car (don’t worry, it was only a shopping trolley for the kids, not a real one).

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When I got home, I just had to go to the beach – look how lovely it was. I think that’s a contender for photo of the week.

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After all that excitement, I had to have a lay down. Fortunately, Karen made me a little sun lounger so I didn’t get sand everywhere, although that may have been more for her benefit than mine.

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Once I’d had a proper rest, I did some exploring and found some fantastic and creative sandcastles that people had left for me.

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Sunday bought more adventures by the sea and I did my pirate impression. No other photos from Sunday, though, as it was just a bit too hot to be out too much.

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I should go for an evening walk on the beach but just too tired, so I’ll have to save that for another day. Hopefully I’ll be less like a yo-yo this week.

Back in time

Thought it was about time that I caught up on a long overdue blog. You may have thought I was hibernating as the weather hasn’t been very good or particularly summer like.

So, going back in time to when it was sunny, I was with Karen who was working from home one Friday and it was such a beautiful day that I just had to get outside at lunchtime. I tried to go for a paddle but, as we know, water doesn’t agree with me so Karen kindly let me float on her flip flop, safely tethered of course.

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On the way back to the flat, I was lucky enough to find a spade which someone had left behind and coordinated quite well with me. Not sure what happened to the bucket though.

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On Monday I had to go back to work, which was a bit of a shame, but at least I got to see the lovely Krissi over a candlelit dinner. Best of all, she had a homage to me on her phone (can you spot what it was?).

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I then stayed in London for quite a while, partly because Karen had an unexpectedly long journey home (4 hours) which meant she didn’t go into the office the next day. As the next day was a Friday, it meant that I got left behind in the hot house tower for the weekend (but don’t tell Adam). Karen also had to stay in her Stratford flat for a few nights the following week whilst some work was done on her bathroom.

It was so good to get back to Margate as London felt hot and noisy. I was treated to a rather lovely sunset as my welcome home.

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That’s not the best picture so I got Karen to take one from the sand which came out a lot better. I think it must have been the excitement, either that or my short arms.

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I think I may have to consider retiring and spending all my time at the seaside.

This weekend was there was lots going on in Margate, although I didn’t participate in everything as there’s only so much you can do when you’ve been working hard. There was the Margate Soul Festival and then the carnival on Sunday. As well as that, the weather was lovely, so there were lots of visitors.

I tried to have another paddle and this time it was the tide that was against me as not in quite enough. I headed over to the steps after that which was a bit better but still quite tricky for someone with no knees.

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I waited quite a while for the carnival to come along but it was taking ages. With the sun out and wind blowing a bit, it felt like I was changing colour so thought I’d better head home into the shade. On the way back, you can see all the people waiting for the carnival to start.

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Eventually, two hours later, they procession did come along at the end of my road and it was bigger than I thought it would be, so I’m glad I didn’t wait outside all that time. Here’s a selection of my favourites.

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We were lucky enough to be joined by a visitor so then headed out for something to eat.

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Strangely enough, or not, the waitress recognised me from when I visited the Sands Hotel last winter. Its a small world after all (cue for a song which really does take me back in time).

Quex Park and Golf

Yay, I’m back online and able to tell you all about my adventures again. It was quite bizarre as the photos just appeared again, so maybe it was just a blip – let’s hope so.

This week was full of treats as there were lots of cakes around in the office. Karen’s team were raising money for charity and had a cake sale. Between them they raised nearly £1,000, so they’re obviously very keen on cake. I’m not sure why, but I wasn’t allow to do any judging. Maybe it was because they thought I’d automatically choose the carrot cake due to it being orange.

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Another treat was in the form of leaving the office on Wednesday, so I got to have a little play with Wilbur and thought I was getting a long weekend. Karen wasn’t too impressed as I was meant to be working but, thankfully, she managed it all on her own. Even though I hadn’t behaved, she still let me have a giant chocolate button for pudding.

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And there was yet another treat – some fish and chips on Friday which were rather delicious too.

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After all that food, it was only right that I went out and got some exercise. I went to Quex Park, which is a large estate at Birchington, and has a very lovely garden with lots of places for me to play on.

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One of my favourites was the monkey puzzle tree and I even found my own little house.

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To make sure I protected my new territory, I made sure the cannon was set up properly to fire at any intruders.

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As I now rule the kingdom, I made sure everything was made in my image, such as this cactus which had ears rather like mine. After that, I visited the post office to make sure my orders reached the masses via mail.

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Even though that trip was rather delightful, there was nothing like being back on the beach later in the evening for a paddle. I also found someone missed me as they left me a heart sandcastle.

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Sunday bought some more fun and games in the form of adventure golf and it was an adventure too. I did have a little trouble with the ball but that’s probably because I was facing the wrong way and then the club was a little large for me.

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The sun came out whilst we were playing but fortunately I found some freshness in the fountain and used the shading provided by the flowers.

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It was thirsty work though so I had a nice, cool lemonade whilst totting up the scores. Who do you think won?

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So, onto photo of the week and, as usual, I have been spoilt for choice so there’s going to be more than one. I think its only fair that we have one daytime and one sunset.

 

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New office

If you remember my last blog, it was all about moving on at work to a different team.

For the first week, I had a temporary desk which actually worked better than I thought it would. At the team meeting, each new joiner was asked to give an interesting fact about themselves so Karen told them about me and my blog. It was only then that I felt safe coming out of Karen’s handbag, although I’m still working on the team getting to know me better.

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On the Thursday, Karen took me back to Margate and on Friday I was home alone. Apparently it was because she was moving desks again and didn’t want me to feel even more confused. Here’s me looking longingly out of the window as she left me behind. What she doesn’t know is what I got up to when she wasn’t there …

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The weekend was a real mixed bag of weather and Saturday you wouldn’t have known it was June. To make up for it being so unseasonable, I enjoyed a nice cooked breakfast at the Cup Cake Cafe.

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Fortunately on Sunday it was summer again and I got to enjoy some time on the beach.

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I really wish it would make up its mind. Even whilst writing this blog, its pouring with rain and thunder and lightening. Really glad that I write this inside!

On Monday, it was time to see my new office and here it is.

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Thankfully some of this is only temporary equipment which is just as well because I know Karen doesn’t like the fact that the screens don’t match. And in case you’re wondering about the bus, the previous occupant had a cutlery draw which one of the directors insisted was kept, but it was so, so messy that Karen just had to tidy it up (which went down rather well).

Being on the 28th floor, there’s an incredible view which I can see whilst Karen is looking at the computer. This one reminds me of being in New York due to the tower blocks.

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I much prefer this one which is rather more British and you can even see the river and the University of Greenwich (just ignore the Crossrail building works).

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The weekend came around again pretty quickly and still a mixed bag of weather. Saturday wasn’t too nice and Karen was quite tired, so I pottered whilst she slept for some of the day.

On Sunday, we went along to Walpole Bay where the other tidal pool is. I would have gone in but, as you know, water doesn’t always agree with me.

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Then I had a Sunday sing along with a rendition of I saw three ships a sailing. It was clearly a pre-emptive rendition for the bandstand later in the afternoon. Can you see the ships?

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Whilst there, I visited the Farmers Market which is held once a month. There was a bit of everything produce wise and so Karen was able to treat her visitors in the afternoon to some nice fresh bread and cheese. They didn’t quite manage to get to the strawberries so I shall enjoy them for breakfast on the way to work tomorrow.

After lunch, we went for a wander along Westbrook Bay. The sea was a whole range of greens and blues which were very pretty. I don’t think it shows very well in this picture though. Lesley was a bit worried that I might fall in but I pointed out the no diving sign and the fact that I was hanging on, so I was quite safe really.

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For this week’s photo of the week there were too many to choose from so I’ve selected my favourite two.

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The second one was taken on the way home on Thursday night when we had that tremendous storm. It looked like the sky was on fire walking from the station so quite dramatic and very wet (for Karen but not for me).

Moving on

It was Karen’s last week with her current team and, despite having had many different role titles, she has worked with some of them for nearly 7 years.

There was a surprise when she arrived at work on Friday as the desk had been decorated. The surprise wasn’t that the desk was decorated but that it had been done in a tidy and straight way (without any sprinkles). I also got a boa so that I could disco the night away.

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See you don’t know what I get up to when you’re not there …

Most of the team went out for lunch and I managed to sneak a crafty chip whilst they weren’t looking.

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In the afternoon, Karen cleared her desk and adhered to the clear desk policy (unlike some) but, even for her, it was rather bare.

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Then it was party time and off they went to the pub but I was allowed to go too, so made the most of it by having wine and a cocktail (by the way, that was a non alcoholic cocktail because I’m only young).

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Despite having been out to lunch, we thought some more snacks were in order and one of them even came with an orange sauce.

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The highlight of the day was the lovely and thoughtful gifts that the team bought Karen, especially the words in the card. I particularly liked the flowers as they had orange wrapping. And, at long last, Adam confirmed that Karen was allowed to keep me which made us both happy and means the blog can carry on. He obviously couldn’t be in non-compliance with the Monkey Wellbeing Legislation of 1972 (thanks Paula!) otherwise we’d have had to escalate to RCOP.

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Saturday was a bit of a write off but I made up for it on Sunday and went out for a walk to get some brunch. On the way, I came across a nice private pool and was going to go for a swim but Karen thought it was a bit deep (and wet) for me.

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As we walked past the square, there were a lot of flags up and I think they were getting ready to do something for the Queen’s 90th birthday, although it hadn’t been terribly well publicised.

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Brunch was at our favourite place, the Cupcake Cafe, but we tried something different this time around which was almost as yummy. No cake though as it was still morning.

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By the afternoon the sun had come out and Karen was going to wash her windows so that I could see out of them but then decided another walk on the beach would be more enjoyable. I rather liked sitting in the sun, warming myself and feeling the fresh air. It was quieter on the beach today and I think the clouds put the people off from visiting apart from the determined few.

 

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When we got home, Karen did manage to have time to do the windows and they are pretty clean now. Not sure it will last living by the sea.

So that is my moving on story, although not quite sure if I will move on this week as there’s been a delay with the desk move. I also need to make sure the new team are up to the job of looking after me. They do have quite high standards to live up to.

To end on a high note, Karen asked me to share her favourite photo of the week and it was sunrise on the way to work on Friday. I didn’t see it personally as I was already at the office, but apparently it was really warm and the waves were just gently lapping onto the sea wall.

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Launches

No, don’t worry, I haven’t launched off into the sea or space. It was an exciting weekend for Karen with two different launches, although not so exciting for me as I wasn’t allowed out as much as usual. Not sure why though …

Most of the launch excitement happened on Saturday. Not only were there two launch parties but Julie came to visit for the day.

First of all we had the book signing of Peshwari Nans by Stephen Haughan, where I also met Vivien.

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After that, the girls did some wandering around the old town before heading for BeBeached on the Harbour Arm for a rest and refreshment. Fortunately, by then, the sun had decided to come out so we were able to relax and watch the world go by whilst reading the Margate Mercury.

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Karen had been part of the crowd funding for the first issue of the Margate Mercury and had been invited to a private party at Margate Arts Club on Saturday night, which was the second launch this weekend. Apparently she had a nice evening and met some lovely people, although I wouldn’t know as I was left in her handbag. There was also a gift of a rather nicely decorated bag.

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Sunday was much quieter and a restful day, much of which was spent reading and snoozing, but we did go out in the afternoon to the beach as the sun was out, although it was a little breezy, enough for the kite surfers to be out.

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Karen decided it was nice enough to go for a paddle and she tried to get me to join in but, as we know, water doesn’t really agree with me and I’m a bit little to be paddling. She even suggested a bubble bath but that turned out to be unrealistic as there weren’t quite enough bubbles, even though the few that there were, were pretty glinting in the sunshine.

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I told Karen that I preferred seaweed and there certainly wasn’t a lack of that on the beach.

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I hope being left behind or in Karen’s handbag is a sign of things to come when Karen moves to her new role. There does seem to be a bit of uncertainty about what’s going to happen to me because Adam hasn’t confirmed I can go with Karen which, of course, is because I’m so useful and productive. I think Adam needs persuading that joint custody may not work as it would hinder my blogging – can you help me with that please? Karen promises I can go out and play more if I am released.