Tuesday, June 3, 2008

When it Rains...

Just a quickie tonight...very tired. A blur of two days. Monday spent in Nottingham. Morning with my excellent coach Jonathan Gravells, who is helping me enormously. He brings structure and options to my spaghetti-junction of a brain.

PM was spent with two commissioners of our services, Rod Madocks and Sharon Bramwell. Gladly they are very pleased with work to date. Phew. Bonus was that they are genuinely interested in our ideas for new services that blend advocacy with self-directed support (for non-specialist readers this is where you take `getting a voice' one stage further and turn it into `getting a life').

One of the commissioners, Rod, upon seeing my book in my bag told me he had written a novel which was coming out later in the year, set in the secure mental health services in Nottingham in the 1980s. Gave him some advice on PR - it sounds like your story - make that the focus of your publicity. Gave him Patrick's number at Guardian Society.

Spend the morning pondering how Speaking Up could look this time next year and laid out a proposal for my Trustees to review. The key is coming up with something that lays the ground for eventual succession - without taking me too far out of the business. PM met another commissioner, this time from Cambridge to discuss same thing as y/day. Less obvious enthusiasm (this is Cambridgeshire after all) but still positive.

Day at the office chugged to an end on frantic note with yet more Power Point Challenge which will hopefully mean our potential investors feel confident enough in us to spend £200k on us these next two years. The Due Diligence has been tough but as a result our presentation is now very strong. I am not sure they have a motto, but No Gain Without Pain would be an appropriate one.

The evening has been a bit depressing. Got home to find the kids in bed and felt strangely tearful as I had stayed late and will be away tomorrow too. Its weird but Ruby is that little bit more distant when she hasn't seen me for a day or two. And I hate it. Wilf, bless him, is still tiny and doesn't mind. Being away now is harder than ever.

Ate dinner with Katy at the table for once as TV now not working due to my wife's decision on Sunday to do some gardening at dusk resulting in the Sky cable being cut. Not being accustomed to this, and being extremely tired, we dined in virtual silence, a but like John and Norma Major on Spitting Image. Except I looked even greyer than JM! `Pass the salt, dear.' My oh my, its time I slept.

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