Normal service to be resumed... just as soon as I've unpacked these boxes

Man About Town
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The Independent Online

It's perhaps not the best start to a column usually called "Man About Town", to admit that I haven't been much about town at all for the past couple of weeks. For the first time in a long time, I've had less glamorous but more important things to do. Of course I have been out a few times: I went to try the all-English wine list at the new GrEAT British (their capitals, not mine) restaurant in London, which just as well for a place with a confident title was great. I made it to watch a show by the excellent acoustic band, the London Essentials, I was at Twickenham to watch England lose to Australia in the rugby and I even spent a night in Bristol for an eye-opening stag party.

But otherwise I have been spending my nights at home. My new home that is, as I have been moving house. Most nights, instead of reporting back from the social scene, I have been packing, lifting and then unpacking boxes.

I have also become such a regular at the Islington Household Reuse and Recycling centre that I could easily write a column about that place alone, but I think if I did, it might be my last.

Neither do I want to bore you with my wrangles with builders and plumbers; the decorating and the redecorating. Nor my very slow transition from a smooth-handed media-type to one who knows basic DIY skills.

But after a long time without, I am lucky enough to now have somewhere that my girlfriend and I can call our own.

So even when some nice invitations have been landing gently upon my desk, I have really had something more important to do. Of course those inviting think I'm playing hard to get, but really I just want to stay in and make it as nice as possible.

After a hard evening's unpacking, it has been box-sets rather than new bars, a home-cooked dinner rather than a chicken shawarma wrap on the run. I've enjoyed it so much that I could really get used to staying in. But as it turns out (fortunately for my future on this column, if nothing else), I am out every night next week: so normal service will resume then.