Friday, September 07, 2007

R & R

After a frantic week of meetings, some very interesting but confidential at the moment, I headed off yesterday morning to the 4th module of a training course I've been doing over the last 7 months. The idea of the course is to help councillors do a better job for the borough and it's been interesting, useful and hard work at times. However, this module was a little different - it covered some of the things we'd identified as areas on which we wanted more help, rather than being part of a set "curriculum". So yesterday we spent a couple of hours on voice production and diaphragmatic breathing with someone from RADA in business. This is a wonderful organisation which helps fund talented drama students who can't access other funds through charging organisations and individuals for training in communication skills, especially voice production skills. It was a fun way to learn and to be reminded of things which it's easy to forget in the heat of a meeting.
The remaining sessions were more intense but also very valuable and then we adjourned for dinner together before a well deserved early night - bed before 11.30 for the first time this week.
Today was warm and sunny so after breakfast I took the opportunity of a brisk walk down towards the racecourse before the morning session. No races, but lots of people walking dogs and enjoying the sunshine.
The morning session was about dealing with the media so very useful for me as the scrutiny of the management of cemeteries reaches its most sensitive stage. Two and a half hours flew by and all too soon it was time to pack up, and say our goodbyes. Over 4 modules we've become friends and I now have colleagues all over the country to whom I can turn for advice if I want to.
This evening's ward surgery brought yet another problem of inappropriate ball games on a piece of open space just too small to accommodate them. I don't think we'll ever solve that issue but we did have some ideas to try out so we'll see how they go.
Because I'd not had chance to do any shopping we decided to eat out tonight, so our local Fairtrade vegetarian restaurant was the venue for tonight's meal - an excellent lasagne with olive salad. And despite it being September the evening was still warm enough to walk home comfortably with no coat!

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