It is quite hard to concentrate on what one is doing when somebody is being sacked in public only a couple of tables away, especially if no attempt at all is being made to hide what is going on. Admittedly I was working on some charts for a rehearsal at the time so I could have put in a headphone or two, but would that have made it look like I had been listening?

It goes to show that human behaviour never really loses its ability to surprise, both in good and, in this case, extremely bad ways. I would have thought that sacking somebody was the kind of thing that should be done in private behind closed doors rather than in the middle of a Caffe Nero, but maybe that is just me and my old-fashioned and needlessly sensitive ways. If you happen to be the lady who was recently made jobless then you have my deepest sympathies and I will be sure to kick those two gents (not really gents) in the shins the next time I see them.

After all that drama I continued with the charts, although getting all of them done before tonight’s rehearsal is going to be a squeeze. The keyboard parts for something like Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer are a delight to work out, for there is so much going on, but going through the minutiae of Gwen Stefani’s Christmas album, an exercise in cynicism if ever I heard one, was enough to make me switch everything off and stare out of the window for a bit. Music versus musak.

The Parliament Choir were up in Coventry on Saturday for the first of two performances of Gerontius, the second of which will take place in London on Wednesday, after which we turn our focus to Christmas carols. Also on Sunday the Exultate Singers performed the new version of This Light Of Reason, Cantores Salicium performed the Fauré Requiem and a colleague of mine swam an inordinate distance to raise money for charity.

In the middle of all this I spent Saturday helping to clear the majority of the house for the arrival of decorators over the next few days, step one of a moderate refurb so that our abode will be as pleasant a place as possible to be during my time off next year, and playing a hysterical game of Kung Fu Zoo with my mother and my other half which I won by a single and unlikely point. Sunday was playing for Remembrance services, a bit of Elgar, a dab of Schubert and Schumann and a dollop of Bach. Thankfully the Stefani was behind me by then.