Monday, March 31, 2008

Save water, bath AND wash your floor

Dear reader,

Something is driving me potty and I simply must share.

I love baths. Hot and deep bubbly ones. I can recline in such a bath for hours on end.

I read, I snooze, and occasionally I even wash behind my ears.

But why, you ask, is this a problem? What is driving me potty?

Its simple. Deep baths contain lots of water. Sudden movements displace afforementioned water. EVERY single bath I enjoy ends up with a mini tidal wave lapping with a great slap over the end of the bath. EVERY single bath.

It just did it just now. And it did it last night. And in all the baths before.

I know its my fault. I remember whathisface and the Eureka! story. But I want the water right up to my chin. So for the second half of my bath I switch between snoozy relaxedness and faint irritation.

Ok faint irritation isn't the same as potty.

I am somewhere between the two right now. Gah.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The evidence

I have come in to work to discover that last night I emailed a photo to myself from BlackBerry...


Its Almostalady with "her" Banksy on her building!




Supercalifrajelisticexpialidocious

Bit of an unplanned stop at almostalady's last night and this morning I am rather proud of my ability to get ready for work almost solely using the contents of my handbag.

It really is like Mary Poppins' bag!

Ok, so I borrowed a shirt...

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Easter rule break

I really dislike commuting during the Easter holidays and it depresses me to think that this is only the first of four weeks in which I will have to do it.

The problem you see is not commuting per se. It isn't even commuters. No no, the school holidays find me craving the close proximity of a fellow commuter. The problem, oh sagacious reader, is families.

I like children. I like parents. I like teachers, both while at work and on their well earned breaks.

But they don't know the RULES. Why catch a peak time train unless you can follow the simple unspoken methods of the commute?

Children screaming make people in suits screw up their faces in pain at 8am. An 8 year old does not need a seat (on which they are merely resting a comic) more than someone in work garb with a nasty meeting ahead. Corridors aren't merely for standing in, lumbered with excessive suitcases. And check the tube map before leaving home rather than forming a block. Finally... WALK FASTER and don't stop suddenly.

Grr.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Pottery in motion....

Here is one of my very own mugs from pottery! In use!

(yes I am having cup-a-soup for dinner).

(and yes this post has changed its name... thanks Elle!)

A-Z of blogging

Today my friend told me I have inspired him to start a blog. About two hours later another friend told me that she has Blog Block and after years of successful nonsense, finds herself with nothing on her mind except how hellish April looks set to be at work.

So here is an A-Z of blogging, to help both of my blog friends in need:

blog about Attack!

blog about boys

blog about caramel

blog about dogs

blog about elephants

blog about fish

blog about gigolos

blog about Hannibal

blog about iguanas

blog about Jerusalem

blog about kites

blog about lifts

blog about mice

blog about nappies

blog about Orangina

blog about pickle

blog about quasar

blog about rifles

blog about stepping stones

blog about TimTams

blog about umbilical cords

blog about violins

blog about waxing

blog about xylophones

blog about zanadoo


On reflection I don't think I blog about animals often enough...

Working from home


I have a horrible cold and so in my usual kind and thoughtful manner I am working from home today in an attempt to spare my colleagues the brillo-pad throat and head-splitting synus action.

Usually when I work from home I am dressed, at my kitchen table, and doing my best to replicate the office environment.

However today in celebration of my cold I am editing a rather stupendous (and overwhelmingly green) message map for my new client from underneath my duvet, in bed, with bare feet.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Fimo fate


I took a lunchtime stroll just now with my pal Elle and we took the opportunity to pop into the new stationary/art supply shop near our office to check out the new Pantone stationary range. Pantone is Elle's client so I shall now ramp up my campaigning to Elle for the Pantone red mug...

Anyway, thats not the point of this post....

The also have Fimo in there. Do you remember Fimo? That stuff thats a bit like plastecene but when you cook your creations in the oven they go hard and last forever? Well back in our youth it was great fun.

"I used to make millions of Fimo dragons", said Elle.
"I used to make loads of Fimo stuff for my dolls house", I replied.

And that, dear reader, sums up beautifully the key differences between my pal Elle and me.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Alive

I met an old friend from Uni yesterday for an Adventure.

Once we eventually found each other by southwark cathedral ("what does it look like?") we had a wander around Borough market and I discovered that lavender marmalade tastes like drawer liners.

Next we headed to vinopolis, the wine tasting place. Well that was rather fun although the professional wine tasting slurp didn't really suit either of us. Plus 16 wine tastings, 4 beer, 2 Bombay sapphire cocktails, 4 whiskys and 4 absinthes is rather a lot. So feeling merry and getting in the mood we headed to a riverside pub for a few glasses of wine and some snacks.

A lovely walk over the millenium bridge and down the strand brought us into covent garden in time for tea (via a few olde worlde lawyer pubs round the courts of justice).

A seafood platter please sir! By god it was massive. We decided crab isn't great and got guilt tripped by the too-many prawns that we couldn't eat (they were staring at us funny) and then headed across the road to be@one for some cosmos.
















The music was fabulous but our last trains were calling. Any normal day would have seen us head for our respective train stations and a sleepy journey home.

But this wasn't any normal day. It was an Adventure. So we ordered another drink.

A short cab ride after they called time took us to the Roxy off Oxford Street where we relived our youth with the likes of S Club 7 and Nirvana (an odd mix I agree, but it worked at the time!). We found a corner where we could throw shapes uninterrupted and proceeded to do so. All the shapes god made. Badly. It was fabulous fun!

Here's to old friends, bad dancing and Adventures. :-))

Friday, March 21, 2008

And then we came to the end...


Monday was my last pottery class and yesterday my sister picked up my fabulous works from their final kiln bake.

She says they all survived and look good (I shall see on Monday!) except for the "sugar bowl" which has a bit of someone else's "creation" stuck to it.

But anyway, I took this shot on the last class because I never wanted to forget the brain power that went into Matthew's vase.

I laughed so hard at so many things over that 8 week course. Thanks Liz for suggesting it - I loved spending time with you.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Chilly bake

I don't know who designs trains. I wonder whether someone wakes up aged 13 and over their boiled egg at breakfast says to their dad "daddy I am going to design train carriages when I grow up". Come to think of it I don't know anyone who has boiled egg for breakfast...

But that's off the point.

I am sitting on my train and feel compelled to share with you, dearly beloveds, one of the big niggles of my daily existence.

Whoever DOES design trains seems to think we all want to cook our flesh below the ankle. My feet are daily subjected to a constant stream of uncomfortably hot air, which can only be balanced by the over head air conditioning.

So my feet cook while my hair lightly blows around my chilling scalp, occasionally flicking past my nose and making me sneeze.

The delights.

Soundtrack

I have a lot to squeeze in today including a client call at 7.30am and another at 9am. My trains don't run early enough to get into the office for 7.30 so I decided to do the first call while walking to the station to catch the 8am train, getting me to work just in time for the 9am.

What I had failed to take into consideration was just how LOUD my morning walk is!

In between my Italian colleagues excellent information about the journalist and the publication that Mr Europe will be speaking to this afternoon, I contributed the following gems:

- a bin man's morning song
- the bin lorry reversing beep
- persistent traffic
- an overly attentive station tannoy

In addition my fellow commuters, who for the last 2.5 years have come to see me as the carriage gossip as I often meet friends on the train, got to see me doing my serious and efficient "client facing" voice :-)

They did stare slightly!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Tenant or landlord

My charming new neighbour hasn't made a reappearance since his nighttime sortee. However this morning as I was locking my front door I noticed that my hanging basket has gone missing.

The basket hangs on a bracket in between mine and my neighbours front doors. Its exactly in the middle, and was put there by the previous owners of my house.

I don't know whether the landlord next door removed it in his last clear out (which tends to involve old mattresses and piles of broken furniture being stacked in the drive) or whether my Charming Neighbour has struck again.

Either way, not a happy chappy. They may not have been sure whether it was theirs but as they doubtless cannot recall putting it there they should have checked before thieving it.

I now have to track down Charming Neighbour (if he ever puts in an appearance again) and ask him for his landlords number so I can ask.

Grr.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Everybody needs good neighbours...

I was woken up at 4am by some very bizarre thumps. They sounded very like DIY but were coming from the empty house next door.

As the thumps persisted I became increasingly awake so eventually I peeked out of my bedroom window.

And what did I see dear reader??? A van, being gradually emptied of furniture by the new tenant next door.

That's right, my new neighbour moved in at 4am.

By 4.40 I was in pain. I had to get up at 6am this morning and need more than 4.5 hours sleep to last the day, so I went downstairs and opened my door (yes, pyjamas, exciting hair and sleepy eyes). Mr Neighbour was holding a coffee table outside our doors. I said (in my best polite voice when really I wanted to hit him if only I could summon the energy to lift an arm);

"I can see you are moving in, but do you have much more to do because you have woken me up".

Ok, its not a cleverly constructed pithy statement, subtle in its forceful meaning, but it was 4.40 and this discussion was happening on the street, in my PJs with a total stranger.

His reply, dear reader, was not as apologetic as we would have liked; "this is just about it". After which he promptly turned and went into his house to bang around some more.

I didn't get back to sleep and left the house at 7am as planned.

I am now on the train, desperately tired and wondering why my road has to be more Eastenders than Neighbours.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

About my grandad

I went to Norfolk yesterday to visit my grandad, and the first thing he said to me after more than 100 miles drive was "I been reading your blog girl, but you never write about me!"

Once I had approved his choice in new laptop, I set him up with a little pressie I bought him; a web cam and microphone set - and downloaded Skype for him.

So my grandad is now not only possibly my most regular blog reader and occasional Facebook user, but he is also making calls on Skype. Quite a cool 82 year old I reckon :-)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Oh! oh!

I have to post again!!

I am sitting on the train, contemplating the expanse of my evening ahead, and a girl has just sat down opposite.

Imagine the voice a girl might have while saying "I love you squishy pop cherry bum!". You with me? It would be high pitched, cutesy and followed by a little yelp.

Well that's her voice!! Only she is Chinese, so I can't make out the words. She could be saying the same as the girl across the aisle: "the Basildon one will be finished on Monday but lee sent some amends to peter on his blackberry which you might need to make to the soft copy on my desk top".

Imagine if that's what she was saying, in her snuggle bum voice!

Hee hee! :-)

The idea tickled me.

Almost A Lady Of Leisure

I left work at 6pm this evening.

I left work at 6pm last night too.

Its rather nice leaving on time :-)

Friday, March 07, 2008

yummy

I could eat a horse right now.

Hils, get out the bath and come up the road so we can get the nice young men at dominos to cook for us!!

Mental download

Here are some thoughts going around my head this morning:

- Gosh I am tired

- Why do I get myself into confusing situations?

- What possessed me to accept four meetings/calls on the trot this morning? And why start them at 9??

- I am really very tired

- Is the train really only just at Stevenage? At this rate I won't make my 9am start anyway.

- Ew its raining. Mornings are much easier when its sunny.

... A short nap later....

- A bit of very loud Queen should hopefully wake me up on the tube. And so another day begins...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Happy blog birthday!

...to me!!

Seems like forever, but was it really only two years ago? I was sitting in the armchair in the corner of my living room (I had to to reach the Broadband access point - wireless came much later!) looking at the disgraceful state of the nasty cheap laminate floor (it didn't even reach all the way under my armchair!) and I have to confess to having no idea why I decided to start a blog.

There don't seem to be any clues in the original text either (if my degree taught me anything it was to always refer to primary source material). I appear to have blogged about Winnie the Pooh and Tessa Jowell.

Still, here we are two years later. I have gone all high tech in the interim and so am not in my living room as I mark this birthday, but on the train mobile blogging. I have learnt how to photo blog (and in my lazier months and those where there are things going on that I can't tell you about that's all I seem to do). Getting a digital camera for Christmas has helped the photo quality, but more often than not its a quick snap taken on my phone or BlackBerry. Its certainly all an improvement on early illustration attempts which were almost entirely fuelled by Google images (a post about a cabbage and a cream egg springs to mind...)

The blog has almost been renamed twice. Once to reflect the excessive number of greeny entries and once because all I seemed to do was DIY (including a step by step progress report on the decoration of my downstairs loo - possibly the world's most procrastinated DIY job - and the tale of my overly amusing fall from a ladder). But I left it as it was, as much out of laziness as anything. Hopefully this year I should have some more exciting thoughts to share!

All in all its been a knackering but fun couple of years. Here is to many more, and hopefully more regular and gripping posts in future!

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