Archive for May 16th, 2008

West London Man talks ‘Stagflation’…

Audio version: Here

West London Man was at his desk in the City at 6.30 am the other morning. Stagflation was not a happy headline in The Independent. He calls a friend… and has to leave a message.

“Hey… The Indie is going with The Stagflation story… yeah… stagnant output…high inflation not seen for decades … set to haunt policy makers for months if not years to come… a bit about house prices… Bank of England stuff from King will hit the media this pm…. yeah…. it’ll be something like this… “Our central projection is for a sharp slowdown of growth and it is quite possible that we may get a quarter or two of negative growth. Recession is not our central projection although clearly further shocks could push us in this direction.”

George puts the iPhone on the desk and searches for Chelsea Flower Show website on his laptop. George needs to replace part of his garden. It was not one of his better ideas, after the barbecue at the weekend, to put the ashes on the compost heap before he went to bed. Still… it could have been worse. Thank god for that new pond… George mused… but for that water source and all the gravel in the small japanese garden area… the problem could have been a big problem. Pity about the two Koi carp… still… George thought, with a smile… they’ll be fine in the freezer until the next barbecue.


7.00 am: Mrs West London Man, Caroline, was in the kitchen. Katja, the housekeeper / nanny, was organising breakfast for Jocasta (4) and Peregrine (2). Caroline had not yet got used to the idea of her blue eyed two year old being called Peregrine after a former Editor of The Telegraph – but George had been insistent. Caroline called him Perry. George insisted on using Peregrine.

“Everything OK with you, Katja?” Caroline asked, noticing that Katja seemed to be very pre-occupied and not her usual self.

“Yes. Good. I make call to Poland last night. My mother, she is not good. My mother.. she is not well and may need operation.”

“Oh … I’m sorry to hear that… nothing too serious, I hope?”

“Yes… serious… but we have many good doctors in Poland.. and dentists… some work over here at weekends… they fly to Britain to do work English doctors do not want to do when people are sick at weekend. You have curious country where people are sick at weekend, but doctors only work during week. I speak to my mother again tomorrow when I hear from bank….sorry.. my English… I mean …when she receives informations from Bank.”

“Bank?” Caroline asked. “Will your mother have to pay for treatment?”

“Yes… it is possible to get good treatment free… but… I can help her to get quick treatment.”

Caroline felt mildly panic stricken. The thought that Katja would have to go to Poland to visit her sick mother for a while and leave her having to fend for herself did not appeal one bit… especially with the flower show, school holidays, Wimbledon, Glyndebourne, Ascot and Henley coming up. Mrs West London Man decided to say nothing for the moment.

Audio version: Here


Previous editions of West London Man: Here

Coming up…. Saturday 17th May: West London goes to Lords.

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