My book of the month is ‘The Noise of Time’ by Julian Barnes. Julian Barnes is a top author (and a Leicester supporter) and I buy his books without even reading reviews about them. I know that any book by him will be immaculately written, interesting and intelligent. In April I also went to see ‘The Caretaker’ by Harold Pinter at the Old Vic Theatre in Waterloo – excellent acting, funny and dark.
My dog Coco has a problem. She gets really anxious just before travelling in the car. As soon as she works out that she’s going in the car she goes into a corner and starts shivering. I have no idea why and I don’t recall any bad experience. I have tried short trips to places she likes and even got in the boot with her to try to reassure her, but none of that has worked. She is never sick and once she’s in the car for a while she seems to settle, but she is stressed by the thought of travelling. The vet said some dogs are like that and I should try Adaptil tablets. Apparently they have been proven to help calm dogs in stressful situations. I tried the tablet for the first time and they seem to make no difference. I continue to look for an answer.
This month we learned that our senior leadership team was shortlisted for the MJ’s ‘Leadership Team of the Year, 2016 Award’. I was delighted because this is probably the most prestigious award for local government leadership and to receive such recognition from our peers is pleasing. Rebecca Maxwell, one of our Corporate Directors, and I were invited to present our case to an expert panel in London. After our presentation I made my way to St Paul’s tube station and on the way there was a big crowd watching the Queen’s guards go by. I thought wow, I think we did well, but the panel didn’t have to go this far! Then I realised this wasn’t for us but rehearsal for the Queen’s birthday. The panel will decide the winner in June, but whoever wins it’s good to be a finalist.