Tuesday 28 May 2013

That Was Another Bank Holiday Just There.

and my my it was gloriously sunny AGAIN!!!

This does not bode well for the summer....

I have been meaning to blog all last week but haven't, I've been a bit 'Meh' really. Now as a rule I don't put any faith in horoscopes and rarely read them unless for amusement, but on the train coming home tonight I had nothing new to read, so re-read my magazine including the horoscopes. For once they summed it up perfectly in one line 'You're a bit out of kilter in general' Yup that is about the size of it, I just feel out of kilter and unable to focus.

I had a lovely long weekend due to the bank holiday and spent most of it restlessly half doing things but not being able to finish anything, half watching tv or half reading, then getting up and pacing aimlessly about. Now that for me IS bad, not even being able to focus my attention on a book for any length of time, very bad.
Mind you on Sunday I was trying to read outside and the neighbours next door but one had music on outside so fucking loud I was forced to go inside, and then forced to put on my I-Pod full blast because I could STILL hear it!?! Nice to have such considerate neighbours isn't it *sigh*

I did a bit of housework, I kind of did a bit of sewing, I even did a bit of gardening but just couldn't settle. I've been like this for over a week now and I have no idea why Hmmm.
(It has to be said I was slightly more focused last night at 11.30pm when I noticed we had mould growing in the bedroom wardrobe!?!&%*£! which of course I couldn't just go to bed and ignore. Picture much cursing and swearing and the delicious aroma of bleach to eventually fall asleep too.)

There have been highlights of course. I was out at Fire and Stone for Thursday night 'All pizzas £6' with the girls and what an absolute tonic for the soul all that laughter and gossip was.

Turns out 3 of us are all due to be aunties within weeks of each other later in the year!
 One of us has moved in with her beau and is in that blissful glowy stage (I just about remember that!)
One of us has a new job (huzzah) which does mean her moving away (boo hoo)
and I am being sent to Chicago for a conference in July.

So yes America here I come, sadly I only get one full day of tourist time then it is full on presentations a go-go for 4 whole days, starting at 8.30am every morning and ending at 5.30pm every evening
We do get a cruise on Lake Michigan with fireworks one night which should be fun and I get to go with my Amsterdam partner in crime Paull which means I fully expect us to get bollocked about our expenses again when we get back!
I just need to figure out just how much I can cram into one day as a tourist, Chicago is a big place and it's not nearly enough time to do it any kind of justice.

Just to emphasize before I sign off how bad my inertia is, I bought this glorious sunny yellow vintage frock the other week and I haven't even tried it on yet, just can't get up the enthusiasm.

 I can't even be bothered to go shopping.......

I am most definitely out of kilter.


Friday 17 May 2013

Birthday Celebrations by the Sea.

As mentioned in my last post we were at the coast for Himself's birthday last Friday.
Before we left went to see the new Star Trek film, which was ok, much too long and not as enjoyable as the first one, though thumbs up to Benedict Cumberbatch who was a magnificent villain.

Friday morn I presented Himself with his presents. It was a big birthday and he had steadfastly refused a party, going out or going away so I came up with the (at the time) magnificent idea of buying him 40 presents for his 40th.
If only I would have known just how damn hard, and just how expensive that would prove to be!

I figured for me it would have been to easy, you know tons of nail polishes and other biddy bits, but for a bloke, and one who just goes right out and buys things when he wants them irrespective of whether it's a week before his birthday/christmas/etc or not, well it proved to be a nightmare and it nearly broke me.

I started a few months early and was quickly just over 20 gifts so I got blaze, I was well on the way and had ages to go.......... Suddenly I found myself with 10 days to go and about 15 gifts still to find......FUUUUUUUCK.
 Let me tell you that man of mine ended up with wine, lots of bags of sweets and the 40th gift was a box of Jaffa cakes!!
As a quick overview I got him a couple of shirts, t-shirts, some award wining vodka, The Avengers on Blu Ray, Star Wars books, various lego mini figures, commissioned him some Star Wars dog tags and an anniversary bracelet, a vintage traveling wash case and tickets to the 40th anniversary of The Rocky Horror Show. 
By the time he got through opening that lot we had to rush for our train so we ended up taking the breakfast bottle of Fizz and drinking it en route from plastic cups! We are all about the class, oh yes.

Margate was as wet and windy as anticipated, though it suddenly cleared when I had to head out to meet my sister for which I was very grateful.

It looks glorious right? sadly it didn't last. Gabs and I had a great night. I finally got to give her her birthday gifts too (only 2 months late!) and take her out for dinner. We both ate lamb and drank some more fizz, bliss.
Next day it was my friend Kay's birthday so whilst Himself went to catch up with his old boss I delivered some more presents and spent the day drinking oceans of tea, eating cake and talking nineteen to the dozen while the rain hammered down outside.
I got back to the in laws just in time to get changed and head out for dinner as it had also been Himself's Dad's birthday that week too!
We ate delicious Italian food and then battled through the driving rain to the nearest pub for more liquid celebrations.

Sunday we went out for breakfast with one of Himself's best friends before collecting our bags and moseying to the station via the Old Town to see how much of an effect being a Mary Portas pilot town has had on Margate.
It was heartening to see a fab new pub/bar and loads of other little shops that have opened in the last 6 months in that area.
It really is vibrant and buzzing, with vintage and independent shops, galleries and of course across the road the new Turner gallery.
                    Not the most attractive building but it's certainly pulling the visitors in.

Sadly the rest of the high street is still a mess and until they sort out the run down seafront I don't think things will ever go back to how they were even when I first started visiting 15 odd years ago. Back then I can remember having to stand all the way down because the train was so packed with families loaded with sandwiches, towels, buckets and spades.
I truly hope they get the retro theme park idea for the old Dreamland site going (http://www.dreamlandmargate.com), though as the years go by it seems doomed to wallow in red tape and never get off the ground. It would be the making of the seafront and the resurrection of Margate.

Thursday 9 May 2013

Musical Nostalgia, A Frock and A Bag.

Last night Himself went to the cinema again and instead of knitting I ended up browsing YouTube. I went on there to find Ellie Goulding's song Explosions as they keep using it on ITV for trailers and I wanted to hear it all the way through as I love her voice on the song.
I also listened to some others to see if I liked more of her stuff, turns out I don't. I love her voice but not what she sings with it, oh well.
Anyways so you know how they always have a list of other stuff on the right hand side, I never know if it is a 'other people who listened to this track also listened to these' list or a similar sounding songs to the one you have just listened to list, but I spotted an old 80's Glam/Hair metal tune called 'Waiting for the Big One by Femme Fatale' and yes it is as cheesy as the title makes it sound but I clicked the link anyway.........

That was the rest of my evening gone in a wave of video watching nostalgia as one list at the side leads to 'oh there's a good track' or 'I haven't heard that in years!' or 'I wonder if this is on YouTube? It is, excellent.'
I had forgotten just how many gorgeous long haired boys there were that I used to swoon over, I watched them and swooned again, I got quite carried away. Instead of going to bed I was still up when Himself got in and subjected him to another hour of me playing songs and reminiscing until his eyes glazed over from how I saw this band play in London, or I saw this band live in L.A or I was at the show where they filmed this video! On and on I wittered lost in the rose tinted past.

I forget these days that music was my life then, I lived it, breathed it, and went to see it instead of eating. God how I wish I had kept a diary there is so much I can't remember (actually that is probably no bad thing in some cases!) I blush at how little clothing I used to wear but I had youthful arrogance and 50 pounds less weight on my side. I marvel at the fact I survived fairly unscathed from the insanely stupid and dangerous things I thought were a great idea at the time. I wonder what the hell all those gorgeous boys look like now and what the hell they are doing now.
I also like to smile at the irony that Himself and I would never have got together back then as I was into Glam and he was into Death/Thrash metal and never the twain shall meet, the fans just did not mix back then oh no. I did finally go to bed, good job I wasn't at work today really.

We have a long weekend as it is Himself's big birthday tomorrow and we are off to Margate to enjoy the bracing sea air ie; be blown to shreds by the gale force winds and driving rain. Oh I do love the British seaside!

This morning I received two wonderful purchases in the post. As I have said before the downside of selling on Ebay is I end up browsing and buying on Ebay.

I found this rather lovely Pearl Lowe dress, as you know I have a thing for her frocks.....

and this one just happened to be purple and new with tags too, even better.

I also found this stunning vintage lucite bag. Photos just do not do it justice it's an absolute beauty.

I'm a happy girl.

Tuesday 7 May 2013

Bank Holiday Fun in the Sun.

No idea what's going on with our weather this year, first we have an endless winter and then a hot and sunny Bank Holiday!?!
Unheard of!
Usually they are cold and wet and we Brits gamely carry on in the rain and the storm because it is a national holiday dammit.

Anyway this year it was wonderfully sunny and what a difference it makes. I got to knock off work slightly early on Friday and came home to a huge plate of fishfingers and chips (diet what diet?) and a delicious glass of wine. It's the little things you know.

Saturday my brother asked me to advise him one bit of his garden, he promised faithfully he wasn't expecting me to do any work, honest guv, just look at it............a couple of hours later and I'm scrubbing mud off my hands having been roped into weeding, lifting and splitting perennials and transplanting shrubs. Yup I never learn.

Sunday I actually got to spend in my own garden, after a delicious boiled egg breakfast, as I say it's the little things (and in my case they always seem to involve eating!)

Monday I was up and off out with the girls. We had a blissful day at Buscot Park a local National Trust property for some gentle ambling about, much gossip and of course the compulsory Cream Tea. 
I haven't been there for more years than I wish to mention. That time I was a wide eyed art student studying The Pre-Raphaelites as part of my Art History course. My brave tutor took a minibus load of us to see the wonderful Briar Rose Panels by Edward Burne Jones

and Pandora's Box by Rossetti

After which we ran screaming through the gardens and to a man decided to roll down the bank towards the lake much to the horror of a party of pensioners walking round the grounds at the time!

Of course this time I was perfectly behaved and it was wonderful not just to see the Briar Rose panels again, (I have a life long love of Burne Jones) but also many of the other amazing art works the family have collected over the years to form the Faringdon Collection.
 As I say it's been many years since I was an eager art student but I surprised myself by recognizing the artist of a few pictures just by the style in which they were painted. Clearly some things stuck in my brain during my time at college despite my best efforts to drink/smoke/party it into submission, miraculous.
I particularly loved the few pictures by Eric Ravilious another artist I really like.

                            (Not one from the Faringdon Collection but one of my favourites.)

No photography was allowed in the house so all of mine were taken in the gardens which were stunning, here are a few

You'd think from these there was no one else there but the place was packed with people, I had to wait quite some time to get that last picture without anybody walking up the steps!

we had to queue for quite a while for our cream tea but it was well worth it, quite delicious. All in all we had a wonderful day out and I definitely won't leave it so long between visits next time.

Only downside? No biggie,  but it would have been nice to have some manner of little gift shop, I am a woman who likes to shop after all, and the incredibly rude lady working in the ticket office. Admittedly they were very busy but everyone we saw in the queue round us was cheery and good natured, just patiently waiting to pay, so I could see no reason for snarling at us as she did. We did come out ticket in hand feeling somewhat savaged and I was left to quote Himself, who once pondered 'what makes a person choose a job where they have to work with the public when they clearly fucking hate people?'