Best day this week
Once again Saturday was the best day.  Having got through an emotional and difficult day on Friday, the day of my sister-in-law’s funeral, the whole family decided to go out for lunch on Saturday.  We had my other brother and sister-in-law staying with us, with my niece, so we spent a leisurely and pleasant morning chatting and reminiscing before meeting up with the rest of the family at the restaurant.  It was very busy and service was very slow, but for once that was in our favour as it gave us several hours to wind down after Friday, and enjoy each other’s company in a way that hadn’t been possible with the numbers at the funeral and reception.  That made it a lovely day, despite the sad reason for being together.

Best work meeting of the week
A team meeting in Warwick, though I had an enjoyable time with my two colleagues in London, doing a handover of their trusts to me.  I will miss them now that they are concentrating just on their other regions – although we are all still part of the same team we will have less contact than when we were sharing London.

Favourite meal of the week
Apart from the family lunch on Saturday, Chris and I had a nice lunch on Sunday at a newish Spanish restaurant in Milton Keynes.  £10 for all-you-can-eat pintxos (a cross between nibbles and tapas) – and we got our money’s worth!  There were also some sweet pintxos so it included dessert as well.

Favourite moment of the week
I emailed all my contacts in East of England to pass on the details of the person replacing me, and received a number of responses thanking me for my support in the past.  One in particular was lovely, saying that I had really helped them to solve their problems, they appreciated my hands-on approach, and they would miss me.  They were a difficult organisation and the cause of much swearing and cursing, not always under my breath, but I forgave them as soon as I read their appreciative comments!

Favourite TV programme of the week
At last, something different.  I was intrigued by trailers for BBC’s new 1950s drama serial, The Hour, and it lived up to expectations.  It was quirky and atmospheric, and I will be following it over its six episodes. 

Sad moment of the week
Saying goodbye to my sister-in-law on Friday.  It was a church funeral followed by burial in the village cemetery, so unlike other funerals I have been to recently at crematoria.  I am always upset at funerals, and always worry about showing myself up when closer family are behaving with control, but I managed not to make too much of an exhibition of myself, I think.  There were moments in particular that got to me: my brother and nephew helping to carry the coffin, the Union flag and guard of honour (Debbie had been in the Royal Observer Corps), the eulogy given by my other brother, walking through the village behind the hearse to the cemetery, the poem at the graveside.  But it wasn’t maudlin, and afterwards we had a couple of hours at the village pub exchanging memories and catching up with old friends (it’s a shame it takes funerals to make that happen sometimes).  I think Debbie would have been pleased with her send off.  I still can’t believe she’s gone though.

Sobering moment of the week
It goes without saying that the funeral was personally the most sobering moment of the week, but I have to mention also the tragedy in Norway – that one person could single-handedly shoot so many people – and sadness at Amy Winehouse’s death.  Whilst it had a certain inevitability about it, it’s still a waste of a young life and a monumental talent.

What have I learned this week
I was reminded again how much my family means to me.  I think we get closer the older we get, helping each other through drama, sadness and loss, as well as sharing the pleasure of seeing the next generation growing up, meeting partners, getting married.