Author Archives: fortewinks

About fortewinks

A PA at 19 and self employed PR at 26, Giovanna is now a British healthcare entrepreneur and public speaker. She is also a bon vivant, mother of two accomplished, entrepreneurial daughters and recently became a Nonna. Youngest-of-All is a Melbourne Top 30 under 30 Chef and founder of, the city's finest destination for pastries and soft-serve. FirstBorn is a published author as well as Certified Aromatherapy Practitioner; her studio is in East London and she can be reached through

JoyFest: Eric drives North for a Very Exciting Adventure

HH (Handsome Husband) announced some time ago that we had been invited to the annual PartyFest hosted by dear friends whose company is rare given the distance between our homes; given our joint commitments we struggled to make a decision. … Continue reading

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Fanfare: The Noble Rot Mayfair

The email was addressed to Noble Rot Friends and Family; it was a first-come-first-served invitation to the brand new Mayfair soft launch. Happily, at 7:23pm on a Friday, I was still slaving over a hot keyboard and replied in seconds. … Continue reading

Posted in Eating out, enterprise, Entertaining, Food and wine, holiday, Life and romance, London, restaurant, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Landlords, tenants and an uneven playing field.

“Remember, tenants should be aware that at any time, in the periodical phase of their tenancy, they can be evicted by landlords – tenants should bear this in mind when standing up for their rights.”  This telling phrase appears in … Continue reading

Posted in Business, Consumer rights, Design and architecture, Family, Home, Landlords, Life and romance, London, property, Property agents, Property rental, Tenant rights, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Independent retail: the personal touch and a bit of a natter

Many moons ago, my then partner invited me to accompany him to a corporate Racing Day. I had a hunch there was something going on between him and his client so decided my look had to pack a punch. A … Continue reading

Posted in Buildings, Business, Consumer rights, Design and architecture, Economy, enterprise, Female Founders, Food and wine, Home, Life and romance, London, property, Shopping, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Does my bum look big in this?

Preparing for a party many moons ago, My Girls then aged 4 and 6 sat on on the bed to watch me dress and make-up.  The final glittering touches complete, I twisted and turned in front of the mirror, wondering … Continue reading

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A Secretary’s Tale: stories to entertain, enlighten, inspire

You’re not very bright. Perhaps don’t worry about a career. You should either get married or ask your Uncle for a job in one of his hotels, said my Careers Advisor at school, circa 1978. When handed an UCCA Form … Continue reading

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New year old me: sixty is the New Forte

“I can tell you that if there’s nothing wrong with you except fat, it is easy to get thin. You eat and drink the same as always, except half. If you are handed a plate of food, leave half. If … Continue reading

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Being Nonna: reviving old memories, making new ones

Mum … what would you say if I was pregnant?  Two years ago, this is how FirstBorn introduced me to her new situation. Grandson N is now 16 months old … and the light of my life. Of course, outwardly … Continue reading

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A new experience: Durga Puja the celebration of women

Forget lunch in Shepherds Bush, said my new Lady Architect friend. Come with me to Romford where you’ll see something different. Although I have lived in East London for over 20 years, I have never been to Romford and so: … Continue reading

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Ghosts on a Wire: a play about light and power

By Linda Wilkinson at the Union Theatre, Southwark, 21 Sep – 8 Oct 2022 Ghosts on a Wire charts the activity and acceptance of a bright new force: electricity. This power is founded on a site that requires the devastation … Continue reading

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