Wow! Those years have flown by and, yet, there are so many memories packed into them. I must dig out some of the old photos from way back when but, for now, I’ll share the celebrations of my 15th with you.
I’m sure you know by now that QVC is like a second home for me. It’s filled with colleagues who have become friends and some friends who are now as good as family. As a thank you for long service the company invite employees to an evening of spoiling and awards for each five year milestone.
It’s always wonderful to see all the familiar faces of those who’ve been on the same journey for so long. There’s a true sense of camaraderie and achievement, especially when the CEO, Rob Muller, makes an encouraging speech full of gratitude for what we do and presents us with an award and gift.
My plus one this year was the same as five years ago for my tenth, my gorgeous best girl friend Mandy. We’ve known each other for over 25 years now and we don’t get out together as often as we used to due to the fact she has moved a little further away.
When we do get together we like to make up for lost time so, rather than just invite her to the evening, I thought it would be great to stay in a nice hotel and enjoy the next day using the spa facilities and that’s exactly what we did. We also took a trip to Battersea Dogs & Cats Home – but more on that later.
The celebratory evening was held at the stunning Haymarket Hotel. We enjoyed a welcome drinks reception followed by a beautiful meal. I have to hand it to them, they did a fabulous vegan meal for me! You never quite know what you’re going to end up with when you tick that vegan box but it was lovely.
The ladies who had organised the entire event, Michaela, Vicki and Karen, were sat with us. We had a great time with them. They were the ultimate professionals even though they’d had barely any sleep getting it all ready, and then were due to catch the earliest train home the next morning.
I do hope you girls got the chance to put your feet up once you got home!
After the meal we were presented with our awards and gift certificate. Our ‘big boss man’, Rob, is such a lovely, warm and caring boss. He made each of us feel very important and appreciated. There’s a real sense of us all being a team together rather than a ‘them and us’ between the higher ups and everyone else. He made time to chat to everyone.
Of course, as with almost every party, I was last to leave! Well, not just me…this motley crew, too. Two of our directors, Tonbara and Teresa (she’s the one who sneaks into my dressing room and muddles up my shoes, ha ha), one of our associate producers, Tarkin, and my lovely chum, Mandy, of course. I do feel so lucky to work with people I adore..and they loved my Mand, too.
Don’t go thinking we were out ’til all hours, though. At the start of the evening there was talk of us going out after the meal. Everyone was saying “yeah! I’m up for that! Let’s go for a boogie!”. By about 11pm we were all in taxis on our way to bed, ha ha! Party animals, eh?
In all honesty I’m glad we got to bed at a reasonable hour so we could enjoy the following day without feeling worse for wear. Mand and I had a great breakfast. Again, the hotel catered for my veganism really well! I should’ve asked how they did their mushrooms.
They were huge, flat ones with some kind of crispy coating on the bottom and some very tasty seasoning. Gosh, I can’t go five minutes without talking about food! Wish I felt as enthusiastic about exercising!
Actually, speaking of exercise…we did have a little of that at our hotel’s beautiful swimming pool. It was lovely. So tranquil. This was definitely a relaxing, non-sporty, kind of pool. Peaceful candlelight and soothing fragrance filled the air. We took some time out to swim and just lounge around for a bit which was just perfect.
The hotel was situated right next door to the original QVC studios (I was heartbroken when I learned the old building was going to be ripped down for luxury apartments, I feel it was a real landmark of a building. Still, they’ve done a very nice job of it, I have to admit). Also next door was Battersea Dogs & Cats Home.
So, the previous night I was wearing ridiculously high heels and had one or two drinks, maybe more. Not even the slightest stumble. Next morning, crossing a road, stone cold sober and wearing flat shoes, I managed to trip over my own feet and go flying into the middle of the road! There was only one thing to bring a smile back to my slightly embarrassed face..
Mandy and I are both animal lovers so we paid the home a visit. It’s great that you can pay a very small amount to go in and see the cats and dogs. You can read about their characters, donate money and buy items from the shop to help support the work they do. We saw people who were about to adopt and felt a little envious as we would have loved to have taken them all home! Our hotel room had been overlooking their outdoor dog exercise area, they were so sweet as they ran around in the sunshine.
We may not be able to take them home but, at least, our little visit helped them in some small way financially. If I ever have more pets they will only be adopted, not bought, as I now realise just how many pets there are who are needing good homes. There is a campaign called ‘adopt don’t shop’. Worth looking into. I’ve learned so much that I had never realised and thought of before.
If nothing else, pop along to Battersea and see the great work being done to help those animals who are longing for a home. Even a visit helps.
To round off the day Mand and I went back to her place, packed a little picnic and took her little dog, Geoff, to the park for the afternoon. It was an absolutely glorious day full of sunshine. Just perfect.
Personally, I hope I’ll still be at QVC for another 15 years. Like I say, it’s home. Truth is though, without you shopping, we wouldn’t be here. We wouldn’t have our jobs. We wouldn’t have met all of the wonderful people we get to work with whom we now call friends. We wouldn’t have had the chance to get to know so many of you, be it in person or via blogs and social media.
So the final thank you goes to you. Wholeheartedly. Unreservedly. Completely. With all my heart, you are the best!
Lots of love,
PS. Ooh don’t forget, if you want to see my new ‘Primrose Collection’ for Clogau jewellery please tune in at 2pm on Friday. You can view the collection early in the links below: