After a morning spent tussling with expenses claims I went for a walk into town in the spickle spackle rain. It is slightly worrying that the Spanish barista in Costa said “small skinny latte” before I’d even opened my mouth. One of these days I’m going to order hot chocolate just to keep him on his toes.
Onwards to the enchanted park where poor Seymour was sporting a brand new hard hat. I swear he looked happier and it looked like, this time, the hat was very firmly fixed on his head. I read an article in the local Echo last night (it was Monday’s Echo so hardly ‘news’) to say the vandals who stole the first one and ripped his trousers have been caught and prosecuted. Two lads, one twenty, one seventeen. They were fined but sadly their names were not released. Name and shame I say then maybe someone can pay them a visit and take their favourite hat then rip their best jeans. Still, at least all the CCTV cameras in our parks are paying their way. Wonder what they make of me wandering around taking photos of everything? Somewhere I’m probably on a nutters list.
Speaking of photos, the hydrangea are looking particularly lovely right now. One of the large lace caps had attracted a bee who was beside himself with joy buzzing around the central flowers as if he’d found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. He was so excited he actually fell over amongst the flowers just as I snapped a photo. Not every day you see that happen!
It’s also not every day you see a bike growing amongst the shrubbery either but that is just what I found. I knew this park was enchanted but bike trees now that really is something. The trimezia are beginning to go to seed now. Long, triangular pods forming where the flowers have faded. Hopefully the CCTV cameras didn’t notice the one I accidentally snapped off and put in my pocket or I could be getting a visit. Perhaps the naming and shaming isn’t such a good idea after all.
This afternoon it was announced that some of us are now allowed to sign off our own invoices. Good news but I do wish someone had mentioned it this morning, it would have saved me a lot of time and effort chasing around after the new COO to get him to sign the huge pile that had gathered on my desk. Perhaps the writers cramp he had after signing two weeks worth was what sealed the deal. Anyhow I’ve been given a credit limit of one thousand pounds which is way more than I really wanted, most of the invoices I deal with are in tens of pounds.
It didn’t take long before I had to use my new powers either. Rose, the distributor of invoices not addressed to anyone in particular, sidled up to my desk shortly after the announcement had been made. Rose wasn’t one of the chosen ones given special invoice signing privileges and she was waving an invoice about with a hopeful look on her face. This invoice could only loosely have been said to fall under my remit, being for the ship’s news service, but it is one that Arabella normally signs. It was actually for one thousand pounds and she wanted me to sign it. It seemed a rather large invoice for my first but there wasn’t really anything for it. Someone had to sign it, so I did, with an audience of Rose and Alice cheering me on.
Apart from Seymour and his new hat, we haven’t had any rhinos for a while so I guess it’s time I told you about the next one, number twenty. This was one of the haul from my rhino safari last Friday and he stands outside the huge Skandia Life building behind Marlands Mall. The building dominates the skyline on the corner of Portland Terrace right at the top of the steep hill leading down towards Southampton Central Station, a huge white monolith with darkened glass windows that, in the right conditions, reflect the sky.
It’s no real surprise to learn Skandia have sponsored the rhino standing right in front of their building and Enrhinomental is quite a handsome chap, despite having a mouthful of a name. He was created by southampton artist, Will Rosie. A member of the British Association for Modern Mosaics, he owns All About Art Ltd, a company creating bespoke mosaics and also community based art projects. Not only that but they run graffiti workshops to get young people interested in art as well.
The rather fetching mosaic design was created to mimic the contours of a real rhino but with colours a little more exciting than the normal rhino muddy grey. The main colour is green, chosen to give the impression of a rhino made from emerald. He may not be the most colourful of the rhinos I’ve seen but I like him.