To take my mind of the bloody inclement weather - not a cloud in sight - I went to Oxford for the day yesterday to revisit my old haunts.
One of my greatest regrets in my ten years at BUBB is the recruitment of Hector Rule as my deputy. Not because he is bad at his job. He is brilliant. And not because he is after my job. Which he is. He looks at my chair longingly for hours on end to the point that the inanimate object is considering filing a complaint of harrassment.
The problem with Hector is that due to a mix up in HR during the recruitment process, we contravened our strict internal procedures. Shockingly he was offered a job despite NOT going to Oxford. If I had known he went to Suffolk Poly or wherever it was he bashed out his PhD I would never have considered him for interview let alone pay him to plot against me, no matter how impressive his CV.
Therefore, I decided to drag him along with me to Oxford so he could see what he missed out on. I also took my brainy head of policy Geof Sachell (who did, thankfully, spend his academic years 'neath the dreaming spires).
It was a perfect day. We had tiffin with my nephew on the lawn at Exocet College surrounded by the glittering youth playing shouty music too loud whilst getting trollied on Pimms. It was like observing a cliche of privileged elitist Oxbridge life, the perfect setting against which to escape the harsh realities of savage cuts. Then we had dinner at Gourmet Burger Kitchen (none of this chavvy McDonalds's for me) before heading back to London tired and emotional. Or to put it in plain English, pissed.