August 2012 – Volpe Newsletter

Firstly, Jake is back from holiday – oh joy. And just as I was able to catch up on some work.

Congratulations to all our medal winners, a magnificent haul. It seems a shame that they won’t all be honoured in the time honoured way, a large contract with the BBC. They should be rewarded for their efforts, but somehow like exam results it is fashionable to move the goalposts just as the ball crosses the line. Perhaps to do a U turn, just to show we care. Of course by “we” I mean Dave and Nick, who I’m sure I will be snuggled up under the duvet of coalition as soon as it gets cold and the electricity prices go up.

Most of you seemed to scarper as soon as the Olympics started and were not to be seen again until we dropped the baton. But it did mean that you could get a table in any restaurant in London, and cross Piccadilly without looking.

Jake is now offering me his iphone 4S 64GB, so he can upgrade to the new iphone 5 when it comes out. At what he says will be at a preferential rate, he is even going to throw in a very attractive gold Wolves case! Aaaaaaarggghhhhh. Many of you missed the start of the football season. Oh, poor Jake; the first game a loss and now the board are selling off the crown jewels, left right and centre. Their season is over.

It is a similar dilemma for me, when asked, why there are never any plain blue or white shirts in the sale. It’s a simple answer, next season I will have to go out and buy the same thing again for more money. Have football clubs not grasped this simple concept? The key is in the word simple, or Joey Barton!

Talking of the crown jewels, I would have expected nothing less from Harry.

Well it’s not the first time, but once again I am writing this sat on an aeroplane. I have avoided jokes about the mile high club for the sake of the prurient amongst you. Is it really up, up and away?

Back to Florence again, life is full of hardship, but as Sam has been very quiet on the travel front, I thought I should take up his mantle. This weekend I should be meeting up with Sunil in a Castello near Viterbo. He is taking a holiday, wonders will never cease.

Things are going well there. But those of you who know, know, and those of you who don’t, I’m sorry for the moment my lips are sealed. Isn’t that so unlike me, but then I’m nothing but capricious.

And please, I am not helping “Dear Silvio” with his return. This is well underway, and they have found a stash of lire in a warehouse in Palermo which should boost the economy. ON everyone someone has written, please pass this on for luck……..

Obviously this was last weekend, but I was writing this beforehand, trying to show that there is input throughout the month.

Also I could recount every tube and bus journey, and the ins and outs of my Oyster Card, but I’d soon have you all asleep, and we’ve only just begun.

A few updates are in order. Jason is back from hols, and knowing his reputation, woe be tide any young ladies that might have been in his vicinity upon his Athenian travails, you know what happens. Shirley is not far from releasing her first born upon the world. By the time this is published she will have stopped working, and Marie tells me that the time is nigh. She could always spend her days reliving her pregnancy via my newsletters on the website, hoping the odd snigger may induce labour and get it all over with.

Some of you may remember Eugenia who used to come into the shop from time to time. Yes, she’s the one who we taught to see a second meaning in everything, a degree in double entendre. By we, I mean me, because poor Jake was too young and innocent. I did say he was! Eugenia is getting married later this year, to Ricardo from Ecuador. Eugenia is multi lingual. Good, avoided the obvious joke, but you know where I was going. She even speaks Swahili, which surprised the heck out of a friend of mine. I’m pretty sure she told him that his spear wasn’t as big as he thought. I think Ricardo knows what he is letting himself in for, and I did try to warn him, but perhaps he is blinded by her looks. She is very pretty. Sorry Gen, but you have grown into your ears. Oh, how I remember the days when we used to be able to pick you up by them!

Michael is in Mikonos, and has been on a diet for what seems like forever, and all he talks about is food, I think this has severely affected his mental state, and it’s made his legs turn yellow. Oh no, that’s the fake tan, and his feet are still cadaverous. B*$£h I can hear him say. I just wish I could be there to see him exit the water, a la Daniel Craig. I just hope he remembers to tie the cord on his trunks, up. But it would be so like him not to. However Michael is looking very svelte, he just tries to thwart me by buying macaroons from Pierre Herme (eat your heart out Laduree) this is the real deal.

Neil doesn’t appear to have noticed that I’m not in Ibiza, but I think his head has been turned by an Italian beauty supplied by Pink, who is down there helping Neil out.

Sorry another update, Neil has noticed that I’m not in Ibiza. By all accounts August has left him a nervous wreck. All of those acres of unadorned flesh have left his needles blunt, and only faithful Scratch for company.

And although he hasn’t been mentioned for a while my ‘D’ list celebrity “friend”, has been spotted promoting clubs on the beaches in Ibiza. This generally involves you walking around shirtless, tanned and surrounded by a bevvy of girls dressed the same way. However in his case it means dressed as a Pacha Cherry. A strange way of getting your five-a-day.

And finally Richard has been gone a year, but not forgotten. His chair remains, and perhaps I shall have a brass plaque made to honour him in his absence. Only recently have the emails been returned, perhaps he keeps tabs on my grammar via the website. He will always be able to return to somewhere, where he is known.

Sent from my ipad

 

Copyright © 2012 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

July 2012 Out of Office Update – Volpe Newsletter

Well Jake’s watching the Olympics, if it’s not the archery, it’s the canoeing, and if not the tennis, the weightlifting. And as tumbleweed is blowing down London’s empty streets, I thought I’d share a couple of bits of news with you, rather than publish it on Twitter.

Yesterday I was wandering around Piccadilly Circus, when I was approached by a young lady. Yes, you lot, not the other way around! It was Jayne from The Wolseley, she’d been checking out the competition with Emanuelle. Well, let me tell you, when it comes to me there is no competition! I was wearing something from my Emperor’s New Clothes collection. Well it was quite humid outside.

Don’t worry I’ll wait for you to get the joke. Madonna found it very alluring.

Anyway I digress; back to Jayne. She suggested a tour of Zedel, the latest opening in the Rexra Group of restaurants. As I’d not been I before I accepted, so we descended into the depths below Piccadilly Circus, to be greeted by Danielle, how we have missed he cherubic face at breakfast. Sorry Jason, but….

It looks fantastic, and as soon as I stop dashing around Europe, I’ll be in like Flint.

And someone has a stalker.

This is what happens when you get very drunk, meet someone; give them your phone number and arrange to meet them at the top of the London Eye 9 and a half weeks later.

First of all the texts start quite playfully, reminiscing over the evening when you met, the horrible drunken state you were both in, the particularly interesting outfit you were wearing. About how romantic it was to arrange to meet at some predetermined point in the future, when clearly you haven’t got a clue as to who this person is.

How the messages get more frantic when you fail to reply, when you can’t remember them or their name. Finally when they buy the tickets for the date on the Eye, and you start to worry that they might be mad.

At least you finally came clean and admitted you couldn’t remember the slightest thing about that night; but do they know where you work?

I await an update.

And as for Dave of the last newsletter, no David it isn’t you, and tell your dad I’m sorry about the Rangers quip, but….

 

Copyright © 2012 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

January 2012 – Volpe Newsletter

Well, I suppose you thought I’d forgotten.

The truth is my hands are so cold that even a random striking of keys was not producing anything coherent. So I have employed someone to blow on my hands to keep them warm. Trust me it’s cheaper than heating the shop, and at a time when we are looking at every penny we spend, I am doing my bit by employing someone.

My friend Michael has recently joined the fold. He has proved to be a rich vein of anecdotes. My current “fave” is how he spent a small fortune on museum quality blinds for the back of his house, which is entirely made out of glass. You may have guessed where this is going. Lit from behind with low lights and soft candles, he has managed to produce his own perfect shadow puppet show, sometimes, more than once a night and even the “odd”, very odd matinee.

Enter stage left, Ian, a friend of longstanding.

Now that Rosie has relocated to Neuschwanstein and stable of Astons, Ian can park his cars outside without incurring her disapproval. Today he arrived with his Ferrari 360, he has a predominantly Italian collection at the moment. I have known him *%# years, stop it, you at the back, it reflects my failings, not his.

In those days he drove a Ferrari Testarossa. It used to infuriate my boss at the time. My boss only drove a Jaguar XJS, or the “Big Cat” as he called it. Meow. He would often unleash it, a la Alan Clark along Piccadilly, mounting the pavement outside Fortnums and pulling a handbrake turn in front of the Albany, just to get a bit of lunch. We only worked a couple of hundred yards away. I could have walked it in half the time.

It sported a number plate with the letters FOL in it. As a child on long motorway journeys, mother would always get my brother and me to play games. One of the games was to make a phrase from the letters in the number plates. I’ll leave you lot to play that one, and feel free to email your examples.

Many a time my boss and I would speed off to Heathrow to catch the early shuttle to Edinburgh at 7.00am. Like an automotive Arthur Daley, he would be dodging here, weaving there, and the taxi that had been alongside us outside Harrods would be in front of us by the time we got to Terminal 1.

However, my favourite Ian story is……Shall I save it? No I’ll take a punt. One of you might do something interesting in February worthy of a mention.

Oh, now look M*#k, put your trousers back on, it’s not big, it’s not clever and it’s not, February.

Sorry, it is big and it is clever. Do you feel better now?

Anyway back to Ian. He and his lovely family have a house in the hills, just outside Cannes, and a few years ago we were holidaying in Cannes. At this time Ian was keeping the Testarossa there. I asked him if we could meet up for dinner, but he explained that they wouldn’t be there at the same time as we were.

However, he enquired as to whether I had arranged for a hire car (second creative writing course, please note Richard). Ian explained that he would be driving the car to Nice airport on the Friday, before I arrived on the Saturday. He would send me the spare set of keys and I could use the car for a couple of weeks before returning it to the house…….

Lost for words, I dreamt of cruising “The Croisette” tanned left arm, hanging out of the window. Arriving at restaurants, eager valet parkers grabbing the keys from my hand to put a thousand kilometres on the car before dawn, only to meet Dawn and find out she was David from Droitwich…

Meanwhile I can hear Ian chuckling. He was offering me an elastoplast coloured Peugeot 309. I had been suckered, and not for the first time, by the dreams of riches beyond my wildest desires. I would be a Russian oligarch, call me Otto (It means eight).

The car was perfect, just the right shade, but the air conditioning was heaven sent, and wherever we went the valet parkers made sure the car was well hidden. Nobody was going to kidnap me and demand money for the release of my daughters.

When I returned the car to Ian’s house, the nice chap from next door waved as I parked it on the drive. He was holding a lighted taper and striding towards the cannon on his lawn. For once, I was unsure what to do next.

Hit lit the fuse, and began to run a flag up his flagpole. Oh stop it, it’s not a metaphor. It was his personal coat of arms. The cannon fired, fortunately only a blank. Time for lunch; what ever happened to gongs?

If this is what money does to you, then I want to know what happened to mine. Touched by madness, I may have frittered it away, here and there. But it seems more likely there, than here.

The sale is nearly done. Life will return to normal and I may regain my sanity. Unlikely I know, but……

 

Copyright © 2012 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

March 2011 – Volpe Newsletter

As you know I like to draw out the suspense with this newsletter vis a vis the end of the month.

However, I’ve been even busier than normal, what with it being my wife Gillian’s birthday on the last day of the month. So it’s only natural that I’ve been distracted by planning a lavish celebration with lots of gorgeous presents. (Gillian – I put this bit in anticipation of lots of gorgeous presents. There will be an update you on the state of our marriage next newsletter.)

Today I’ve cast aside the iPad. I’m rather hung over, and I was unable to focus on the keys. We spent an evening with the man “who is a suit short of a week” and his husband. At least with these two we’re never a glass short of a drink. However he is 6ft 6ins and the expression “hollow legs” was created with him in mind.

I am back travelling again. I had a couple of days in Rome and a bit of spring weather and a meeting with dear Silvio. Just to pick up a few tips mind you. Well you know old dogs, new tricks, and all that.

I spent the time with one of my best friends and his family, the ever youthful Pietroluccis. I’ve known Max 20 years and before you all say it, yes, I really am that old.

He, his brother Mau and father Sergio have not aged one bit. Max ‘Five Vests’ Pietrolucci is a bit of a Godfather name but he needed to keep warm while lodging in Wembley, studying English in London and working with me in Piccadilly in January.

Better than doing national service somewhere crappy in Italy. These days he keeps his temperature up with his voracious appetite for cheese. Vash at the Cork and Bottle has never known anyone eat so much cheese at one sitting!

Max reminded me about the egg box of a kit car I used to drive in those days. Small boys would point and stare in awe at it until dragged away by their mothers. Their dads would stand slack-jawed until dragged away too. Don’t say it; I know you were thinking it!

You could drive it under an articulated lorry to do a short cut on the Hogarth roundabout. I had the hood off in all weathers; well it would be after being driven under a lorry, but it did have a heater.

It was probably the fastest car to 50 mph I have ever driven, but then it would either breakdown or hit a metaphorical brick wall of acceleration, at which point everything I’d overtaken would get me back. But I’ve learnt to cope with the humiliation. I mean it wasn’t the first time and it won’t be the last.

There have been a large number of new subscribers to the newsletter, and hopefully some of you might do something worthy of writing about. I mean it’s not as if you all have gone into hibernation. Pulses seem to have slowed to a rate where it is hard to tell whether you are alive or not, but in some cases this seems the norm anyway.

The first rays of spring sun, and thoughts turn to, well you can keep those thoughts to yourself.

Anyway David is back in the shorts and driving shoes – green suede, very nice. Andre is sporting his Birkenstocks and not much else it seems, or so he likes to tell me. He’s just arrived back from Miami, no doubt after abusing some poor soul in first class. Perhaps they didn’t want a French wine.

Richard with his sylph-like physique stretches to a jean with a 26 inch waist. He can apparently buy these in Selfridges, either from Dior (so Richard), and Dsquared (so not Richard).

Their assistant was apparently just hangin’ in the department. I am unable to recount Richard’s story of trying on the Dsquared jeans as well as him. These were probably designed by MC Hammer, which once on, he was unable to get off over his feet, trying to stand up and holding on to a rotating rail, which apparently kept throwing him to the floor.

After an hour of struggle he removed the jeans he finally wandered off to Dior to purchase his bling.

Anyway back to the rays of sun. I bet you’ve all been keeping up with Wonders of the Universe on the BBC iPlayer, and Prof Brian Cox, a man who considers himself even more gorgeous than me.  (As if that were possible).

No, I hear you say, but yes; bestriding the universe with his floppy hair and moist lips. Traversing mountain tops, deserts and glaciers. Gazing at sunrises and sunsets. Experiencing weightlessness, flying at the speed of sound, and feeling the force of g (yes, I did have to think carefully how I worded that).

Vanity, thy name is Brian. You’re not the Messiah. Just a very naughty boy with a spectacularly good publishing deal, and great hair.

Sent from my iPad 4

 

Copyright © 2011 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.