‘The One And Only CAFF, CAFF’s Here, Come and See CAFF Show’. Not.


Hello again, coffee lovers, c’est moi!

Now I know I said ‘Come Up and See Me’ (at the NEC) but little did I know that I’d be absolutely overrun with lady and gentleman callers. For the three days of the show there was a never-ending stream of ‘Facilities Managers’ coming on board for a coffee and a chat. And apparently, these are the people who really run the country, not those nice new gentlemen in Westminster, who are just for show.

Anyway, Paul says that being overrun is ‘a very good thing’ and that I should be pleased. He said it’s because I am such a wonderful exhibitionist that ‘so many people have been queuing down the aisles for a little peep.’ I am pleased though! I was made to be the centre of attention! J And everybody agreed that I am the ultimate in great taste!

On a slightly sour note L there was some confusion regarding the name of the NEC event. My people were assured that the show would be entitled ‘The One And Only CAFF, CAFF’s Here, Come and See CAFF’ show. But some blithering idiot had put up signs saying ‘The Facilities Show’. Frankly, I felt betrayed. And, AND… The organisers expected poor Alistair to pay for the privilege of my attendance!

I should co-co!

He took it on the chin, though. In fact, he went away at the end of the show rubbing his hands together, with a beatific smile on his face, muttering something that sounded like ‘juicy Leeds’ and slavering in an altogether unsympathetic way. Paul says not to worry and that these are symptoms of ‘happiness’.

After ‘the-show-who’s-name-shall-not-be-spoken’, it’s a spot of gym and tonic for me. I’m on my way to meet my maker. He’s going to do something he calls ‘tweaks and snags’ and you don’t have to know what that means to be sure it’ll hurt. Never trust a mechanic with a giant spanner in his hand when he says ‘you won’t feel a thing, madame’. Apparently, though, next time I see Paul I’ll be even more gorgeous than I already am.

Then next week we’ll be going to the HefmA conference in Harrogate, in a place called Yorkshire, which Alistair says is ‘God’s own county’. Paul says HefmA stands for ‘Health Estates and Facilities Managers Association’.

‘I want you to go up there and I want you to show them that Café Amore is the best refreshment option available to the NHS’, he said. ‘I want you to tell the lady and gentlemen callers that we can do trolley services, staff catering and retail…’ he said, with a thump on my worktop for extra emphasis.

Do you know, he says he loves me but from where I’m parked it’s all getting a bit ‘me, me, me…’

He can be sooo sweet though. He’s just said to me that if ‘all the hospitals in the U.K. had your beautiful Café Amore for their patients and staff and visitors; then you would be the most famous lady in the whole country, not including The Queen and Cheryl Cole.’ Now that’s a goal a girl could aim for!

Finally, for now, I must tell you all about my lovely retinue. I had two handmaids and two footmen to pander to my every whim at the NEC, but I’ll be asking Paul for more help when we go to Harrogate, what with the sheer volume of very important lady and gentleman callers we’re expecting. They were run off their feet at the NEC. (The retinue, not the lady and gentlemen callers).

It’s true: my retinue didn’t have a minute’s peace for days. My Paul’s very fastidious, you see. If there’s a misplaced sweetie wrapper on my floor or a dirty coffee cup on one of my tables, he cracks his whip. He can be quite alarming when he cracks his whip. So my boys and girls deserve a pat on the back. And so does Paul, to be fair: after all, he’s only a Big Meanie because he’s very keen that I always look my very, very best. That way, he says, my lady and gentleman callers will want my coffee all the (a)more! Ha ha!

And on that note of comedy genius, I’ll say bye for now, and remember, I might be the Café Amore Field Facility, but you can call me CAFF.

Paul and Alistair enjoy elevenses at the NEC

My lovely retinue x x

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