I fry up a bit of leftover steak from last night and make a Thai beef salad for lunch…

UP early and by 8am the smoker’s up to speed and the beef rib on for tonight’s dinner.

A lot on the today and I can’t go far ‘cos the cooker engineer’s coming to fix (I hope) the hob.

I need to finish cutting/trimming the flower show entry/auction swing cards and punching holes in ’em. A thousand of them, so I take a break form the routine tasks and get a couple of hundred done.

There’s a couple of ‘phone meetings’ to be done – originally scheduled to be face-to-face meetngs later in the month but the powers that be decided they should be done by phone, only telling me so after I’d arranged the face-to-face meetings!

I make the calls to cancel the real meetings and deal with matters in the remaining sections of the phone calls.

Before lunch I spend half an hour setting the studio for a dialogue recording scheduled for 6.30pm…a Spanish translation of a script for the local audio project.

I’m just going back to the office after lunch and a text comes in from the Spanish script translator. He needs to reschedule as the girl coming to record the script had to stay and extra night in London last night. I’m pretty pissed – I can accept things change, but they must’ve known about this yesterday or at the latest last night, so why am I only being told now when it’s too late to reschedule other stuff I’ve had to put off.

I grit my teeth and carry on working in the office writing news releases for the Newcastle show on 25 August then going through the usual process of calling the papers and chatting thing through with the music/arts journos before sending – a practice I’ve found pays huge dividends.

In between times I’m keeping an eye on the temperatures of the beef short rib in the smoker.

Twelve hours in the smoker…and the beef short rib is ready!

My earlier annoyance is superceded when Margaret calls to say she’s called the cooker folks who aren’t coming today after all! Some shite about a part not being available and claiming they left a voicemail yesterday. They didn’t. All this after three weeks of farting about and a wasted day waiting for them on Monday too!

To cap things off, I’m cutting more flower show labels when a wasp flies up my t-shirt sleeves and stings me on the inside of the arm. Wee bastard!

Margaret’s about to go on her couch to 5k run when Betty and Joe drop by so I come in and join them for a coffee and a blether, then accompany Margaret…a 20-minute run today with a five-minute warm up/warm down walk at each end.  She completes it without too much trouble. Who’d have thought!

It’s after 9pm when we sit down for dinner and the beef rib is deemed a success…

moked beef short rib and spring onion mash. Success!