Monday, 17 January 2011
Small crisis in taxi - January 2011
Normally I use public transport to move around London. Even after a dinner in a full-length dress, you can happily hop on a bus back to Waterloo to catch the train home. (There is CCTV and I remove any jewellery and wear a long coat. There are a surprising number of City workers going home at 10.30 at night, not to mention other Masters, self-consciously covering up their black ties.)
Taxis are kept for the biggest occasions (pre-booked) or if it's raining. However, last week I was running late so caught a taxi from Waterloo to the livery hall venue. I planned to use the journey to change my shoes, put on the Master's badge, ensure I had the right things in my evening bag so that I could arrive in my right mind, drop coat, shoe bag and brolly at the cloakroom and float serenely into the event, even if the timing was tight.
I was just getting the badge out of its little soft travelling pouch when I found I was holding the neck ribbon in one hand and the badge and its clip in the other - the clip had worn through the stitching which attaches it to the ribbon. Drama! You cannot (without a lot of explanation) attend a livery event, representing your company without wearing your badge.
Plan B - a safety pin. Except that (scrabbling around every bag and pocket in the half-light) I didn't have one anywhere about my person - bad mistake.
Plan C - start thinking creatively. Happily I was wearing a gift from my mother earlier in the year, a necklace with a pendant. The pendant was detachable - yes, there was the answer! The Master's badge would just clip onto the necklace. And the picture shows the result. (Actually, lady Masters sometimes wear their badges on a personal chain so no-one commented, other than the Clerk, who liked the effect. But with a 5 oz weight on it, only an emergency solution.)
Today I have carefully stitched the clip back on to the ribbon and I hope it stays there firmly for many years.