Friday, April 24, 2009

I was saved by old times

It would appear that this past week happened and it barely registered. I've been putting in one of my great shop-window dummy performances during the day, where on the surface I appear to be engaged, but in fact, my mind is several thousand miles away.

The US trip has really really taken hold of me. I am now two weeks away from flying out and it's the only thing that I can concentrate on: my mind is swimming with preparing, itineraries, plans. I'm aware that this probably makes me sound like some kind of sub-Hilton dunderhead, rather than a woman in her mid-thirties with half a brain.

Oh yes! I have remembered something that I did last week. I went out for DL's 40th birthday celebrations. DL himself was suffering from a really bad cold, so spent most of the time drinking hot whiskey. Yes - hot whiskey. He eventually admitted defeat and went home at about 9.30, leaving the rest of us to it (he had been in the pub since 12.30, so he did very well). It was a very pleasant evening.

Prior to that, I spent a couple of hours in Selfridges with Mrs Hall looking at expensive toiletries and clothes that we had no intention of buying. Those are usually the best kind of shopping trips: all of the fun, none of the stress.

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Friday, April 17, 2009

Words are very unnecessary

Apologies for the silence. I tried to post something earlier in the week but failed to feel happy enough with it to click the "publish post" button.

Last weekend, I returned from my time away in Devon feeling melancholy, for a number of reasons that are too boring to recount here. Despite that, it was a good visit. I saw plenty of family and even some friends this time - one of them long-lost. I know I mentioned him in the early days of this blog, but cannot be bothered to find the permalink. Sorry.

What else has happened?

I started my annual cycle of hayfever misery two weeks ago. It's still causing me a fair degree of discomfort, but the many inhalers and nasal sprays I was prescribed are helping. I threw out the antihistamines that gave me vivid dreams and am using an over-the-counter brand: no more gore-soaked nightmares for me.

I went to see Fifty Dead Men Walking. This was fine, neither brilliant nor bad.

I've been watching lots of superlative US television: Mad Men, 30 Rock and The Wire.

On the latter:

I am fully aware that it has taken me years to get to this, despite friends and family bugging me in a well-meaning sort of way, as well as the excitable cluckings of Mr Brooker (whose word is approximately 95% law, as far as I am concerned), I resisted, mainly because I couldn’t find the time. Also, if I’m honest, I didn’t want any more DVD box sets hulking about the flat. You know how it is, you settle in for a guilty 90 minutes’ worth of soaps on a Monday night and find yourself glancing at the bookshelf, where 630 hours of top-quality viewing glowers down at you, like a disappointed elderly aunt who has just caught you breaking wind at a funeral.

Anyway, I’m at the climax of season one, watching on terrestrial TV via the magic of a hard disk recorder. At present, I am doing my best to drink every detail in. I am also indebted to the subtitles, because some of the dialogue is tough to follow. Thank you, my failing hearing!

That's all for now. Coming soon: I get even more excited about going to the USA (three weeks to go).

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Friday, April 03, 2009

I wear the clothes that make you cry

Today is my last day at work for ten days. To say I'm looking forward to the break is an understatement. It also appears that my hayfever is back with a bleedin' vengeance, perhaps some time away will help this (unlikely, but I can dream).

Also - I am having my hair dyed this evening, which I always look forward to.

I'm a late convert to hair colouring. Having had dark brown hair since I was small, it was a shock when I started to go properly grey a couple of years ago (although I had been in possession of a Mallon streak since I was 18 or so, a Morticia Addams-style stripe at the back of my head.). I put off using dye, because I was concerned about the toxins it might introduce into my body. So I tried henna, which was a horrifying experience that will never be repeated. Put it this way: I will never wear something on my head that makes me gag in the name of vanity again.

Following this, all green credentials flew out of the window, and off to the salon I trotted. Sure, it is expensive, but I'd rather pay someone than have JJ as my personal Nicky Clarke, swearing and shouting like a man possessed as dye runs down my face and coats every surface in our bathroom.

I offset the expense of my hair by wearing some quite shabby clothing. This works out quite well for me. I'm not good at dressing smart, although I do scrub up relatively well when I need to. Now that the recession is here I am thinking of putting at least one smart item of clothing on eBay, so I can make money to buy more shabby clothing. Result.

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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Lunchbreak odditude #1

First in a periodic series.

Lady at a bus stop with tattoo of the name 'Danny' on her left foot. [Thought this may have been a clever allusion to Daniel Day-Lewis/My Left Foot. Checked right foot to see if that was called 'Simon' or something similar. It wasn't.]

Deeply tanned/freckly lady wearing a pair of day-glo pink gladiator jelly sandals. [This made me double-take.]

Anyone would think summer was here. I am categorically not a foot fetishist.