Farringdon Oh Farringdon…..

It’s very wet in Battersea.
So wet the lights of the cars are making the road shine like a cheap bauble.
I left the cottage at 12.30, expecting to arrive in London at 1.45, in the event it took me until 2.50 to get here.
I walked into the flat and felt very strange.

The flat is all about work. It’s all about routine and rhythm. The flat was still as I had left it when I drove home on that fateful Thursday.
The lettuce lay limp in the fridge, the spinach dark and damp round the edges, the wastepaper bins full of work bits and the bed empty and unlovely.
I cut up two apples, one half rotten the other fully blown, and munched it whilst I sorted myself out for a trip to Farringdon.
My mother used to work on THE DAILY WORKER, when she was young, in the very building I went for my meeting.
I have a met a man who is leading me into a new life. He is sharp, savvy and God knows when he sleeps. He has more ideas on the go than a development team in the developing office of a developing country in development.
I took the 170 to Victoria. Had to take my little quilt jacket off as the heat on the bus, and the steamy windows, made it feel like a sauna.
Got to Victoria and it was cordoned off. ‘A funny smell’ said the policeman with a face like a slapped arse.
A funny smell had closed down a big london station.
I walked round the block and took the 24 bus to Westminster. I love the 24 route right through to Hampstead heath. If I hadn’t been one hour late for my meeting I may well have stayed on for a bit longer.
Westminster and the circle line to Farringdon Station. New route, new station. Never been there before. Lots of city workers climbed aboard at Cannon Street. Men clutching economical magazines talking very loudly, in a clipped kinda way, to young blonde women who just love Champagne and Pimms but resisted both at polo last week….
I had to move from the woman sitting next to me who smelt of horse manure. Normally I like the smell of fertiliser but not on a train in the centre of London.
Got out at Farringdon, right out of the station, tip-toeing in the rain to the traffic lights. Crossed over the road and there was a little grey door in the wall.
I was welcomed warmly, shown my desk, my belly all a flutter with nerves. After all I haven’t been anywhere for the last three and a half years. I shall need to build my confidence.
I left and took the train to Kings Cross, one stop, then the Victoria line back to Victoria. They had re-opened the station. By the time I got to the bustop the rain was teeming down, I just missed the bus due to a woman walking very slowly. She apologised to me as I sighed rather too loudly.
Hailed down a taxi. The cabbie wanted to talk about LBC, and radio and unemployment, and television and age and politics and gawd knows what. By the time we reached Battersea Square I was all listened out.
I had listened to LBC on the way up from East Sussex. I know, I know. It’s like taking out the box of wedding photos to see quite what he looked like before the divorce. I turned the radio off pretty damn quick preferring the silence. I got out of my taxi before I needed too preferring silence then too.
It’s now nearly 8.00. The police and ambulance alarms are chorusing round the flat. A wet Wednesday in September.
I have indigestion from eating too fast and too much, and I need to get home to rescue Jim’s chicken soup. I know we’ve been together for a long time but chicken soup is my province and is not something that can be learnt from a recipe. Jewish Penicillin has to be made from the heart and is not something to be taken lightly, as far as I can tell my Catholic husband has ruined his first ever attempt at the Semitic healing broth.
Nothing that a sieve, a sigh and a handful of bitter herbs can’t rectify.
The rain is not a teem any more its merely a steady drizzle. So it’s off with the lights, down to the car, on with the music and a pleasant drive home to a saucepan of disaster and a handful of family.

16 thoughts on “Farringdon Oh Farringdon…..”

  1. Oh vey my boobalah, I am gutted not to hear your dulcet tones on the radio in the afternoon – my days revolved around Vanessa in the morning and you in the afternoon. We will miss you – hope to hear you again somewhere else soon. I haven’t enjoyed a pm show since you left. Hope to hear you again soon. Roz xx

  2. Jeni – you paint such a vivid picture. I can see and feel the rain, smell the horse manure which seems strangely prevalent in London buses and hear the sounds of London. Not to mention the taste of the Jewish penicillin – there’s nothing to touch it. I hope it’s doing its healing work for you. Whatever that Farringdon desk is all about please let it be part of something that brings you back to those of us – so many – who miss you very much. My ipod at 2am with its podcasts when I can’t sleep just aren’t the same – no, more than that, I’m devastated. God bless xx

  3. Wet days can be the best days Jeni !! rain drops on Alchemilla mollis nothing more beautiful. Now then you say you were shown to your desk !!! which sounds like a job !! will be know more soon? Miss you so very much in the afternoons. I would listen to you whilst doing my emboidery and think of you now everytime I take it out.xxhugxx

  4. Dear Jeni! Terry here again!
    Im so pleased that you have been to see the man about helping you to get back into work and entertain us all again! Your many fans and i included want to wish you so much GOOD LUCK! Jeni, Just remember That we are all here for you! And we will never forget how you daily Brightened all our lives with your Cheerful Banter and wonderful smile! I hope and pray that you will have that Holiday in Costa Rica that you said Jim had booked for you and you can relax and forget That shock you must have been going through when you walked out of the doors of LBC radio into Leicester Square for the last time!
    GOOD LUCK Jeni and take good care of yourself! i know something Great is soon to come your way and I and all your fans will be so delighted to see or hear you again as you continue to entertain us all!
    Much Love and God Bless
    Terry xxxx

  5. Jeni!!!….call me!!!!….contact me!!…please!!!!…I used to love listening to your show on LBC. You are a truly inspirational woman and really have helped me to sort my life out just by understanding that nobody has it easy and you just get on with it!!….we could have our own radio station oh it would go down a storm!!!!…you are fantastic!! Don’t give up and do email me!!…I promise we would have a blast!!!

  6. Jenni, just read your blog. Reading it all the time now as I miss your lovely programme. Your blog reads so much like a book, such good detail about everything, so why don’t you write that book now? I too have not listened to LBC since I heard you left.x

  7. I must say I am not surprised you were sacked, sorry but you are a nice enough person but not a radio presenter. Petri is professional and very bright and I am sure you will agree she is the real deal. You are best suited to Theatre in my opinion and your ulta liberal stance ultimately cost you your job I am afraid. This is the new era we live in – if you want to hold anti establishment views from the 60’s I am afraid you will be ousted as the world has moved on and we all need to adapt…sorry Jeni you are a lovely person but you were just not up to the standard of James / Nick.
    Good luck in your future.

  8. I am disgusted you printed that last letter. Jeni is human, the sort of person you would like to have as a friend. You feel Petrie is making fun us who have not had her advantages in life.
    Shame on you

  9. Jeni, I have left messages all over the place on this website so that you will know that at least one more person thinks you are the greatest! Never mind the small stuff, these little people with narrow minds are so very unimportant in your life but they have to try to assert themselves, as so few agree with them! Continue being the lady that you are and treat these horrible comments
    with the contempt they deserve. For those of us who love you, please keep us posted as to where you are and when we can hear/see you again. You have the most important things in life, – family, children, health & a good husband,- the rest will come again when the time is
    right: I have written to Jonathan at LBC just to make sure that he knows what a mistake he has made… Come on everyone, let’s start a CAMPAIGN TO BRING BACK JENI!!!
    Much love to you Sweetheart!

  10. I’m sorry that you’re not at LBC anymore. I enjoyed your radio programme and am missing it! There are now hardly any female presenters at LBC, and no older female presenters. I always thought James Whale was very rude to you during the handover half hour before his programme, which I don’t enjoy. I hope you will be back on the radio soon. You are great!

  11. I have been missing you on radio so checked on here to find you are no longer there! Honestly I would go out with my son in the car in the afternoon just so I could listen to you, not hear your replacement go on again about ‘grinding’. Such a huge loss to LBC. Please come back on another station and I’ll be disloyal to LBC in a flash.
    Keep well.

  12. Found your web site and decided to have a quick browse, not what a typically do but nice one. Wonderful to see a weblog for a change that is not stuffed with spam and rubbish, and actually makes some sense. In any case, good post.

  13. Jeni,only just found out that you are no longer with LBC (what an awful mistake) Mum and I have been turning on the radio each day waiting to hear you, thought you were having an extended holiday, we are both really really upset, if you get a job with another radiod station we will be switching from LBC pretty sharply. Good luck for the future, we will miss you.

Comments are closed.