Well .... if there is one thing absolutely, cast iron, guaranteed to 'get my goat' it is someone occupying either a disabled parking space, one designated for a car with baby on board stickers or as in this case (just the downright arrogance of someone) taking more than one space!
I make no apologies for my dislike of personalised number plates -- I just don't 'get it'. What's that all about? Why does someone need to shout about themselves in that way?
This inconsiderate driver frequently parks in the car park where I park and it can start me off having a really bad day ..... I don't know why it bugs me so much, but it really does. The arrogance of the individual - because I really don't think it was just someone who is useless as parking.
Not written on the blog this week as my hand has been giving me problems again. I've been trying to stay away from the laptop (rather unsuccessfully, I know!)
Went to see my lovely Dr D today, whose only suggestion was two weeks off work with total abstinence of keyboarding .... impossible, I know. So it's back to the anti-inflammatories and I'll rest it when I can. It really is frustrating though. Thankful that it's only in one hand, and the left one at that.
'D's car is back in the garage.
We are absolutely skint.
Hoping to meet 'T's girlfriend this coming week for the first time, so hopefully will get a chance to talk about the future and she might see that I'm not the 'ogre' my son makes me out to be! LOL
Had lots of texts from 'El' this week; she's very upset that 'P' has broken up with her or has another girlfriend. 'P' is very much a closed book and keeps his own counsel, so I shall wait to see if he needs me.
'E' and 'L' are really upset this evening - I had to break the news that the pool party they thought they were going to tomorrow night is off the menu! 'D' should have broken the news, as it was his decision. There has been a fatality at the pool and he is not happy for them to go there. Given his job - I have to bow to his greater knowledge and support his decision. Pity he couldn't tell them this news himself though!
Oh well - better go and see what's to be raided in the cupboard. After looking at the bank balances online - I doubt we will be having a takeaway this evening. (((sobs quietly into mug of cold tea)))
Shay (co-worker) told me about something I had missed on the telly - thought you might like to see it - click on the link.
'D' and I dropped 'E' and 'L' off at school, drove into town, parked the car and then got the train into Brummijum. We found seats immediately in front of a pleasant enough gentleman ........ well, that is until he starting coughing like a TB sufferer! I couldn't face sitting there, so we moved further down the train.'Manuel' (real name on ID badge), a very gorgeous, young, Spanish looking gentleman with spiked hair checked our tickets and 'Hola'!
A journey that is often quoted as taking only 15 meetings, seemed to take longer than half an hour!
We spent a long, long time in the book store when we got there - set over four or five floors, with a most impressive central staircase.
The bookseller told me that the store used to be a Midland Bank in a former lifetime.
I also picked up a small, hard volume of Fanny Hill, Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure by John Cleland (more of an inpulse buy, than something that I was looking for particularly ......)
Another treat was picking up some more of my most favourite notebooks, Moleskine (pockets - naturally), one in a gorgeous yellow ... the Van Gogh Museum edition and a five tabbed, black, info book for my new activity which will be revealed later ....
We went walking around the City and found the building I used to work in, opposite the House of Fraser, in Martineau Square (it used to be called Commercial Union Building) and when I worked there, there was a Kardomah underneath where I would stop for coffee before going into the office.
All very different now, with new structures and sails in the Square. Mind you, it has been about 27 years, so I'm not surprised.We came out of the passage opposite HoF and I was amazed to see a vending machine, dispensing umbrellas for £3 a piece! I can honestly say that I have never seen anything like it before and it made a welcome change from condom dispensing machines!
Accosted ...As we walked around, we were stopped by market researchers. Now ordinarily, on a busy work day, I don't really have the time to be stopped - task and finish. However, today, I figured I was on holiday and could take time out for them - after all, it was freezing. A nice, middle-aged lady asked me if I used deodarant?!? I resisted the immediate impulse of bopping her and replied politely. She offered me £5 to go with her for fifteen minutes! I figured, well it might be the best offer I get all day, so I agreed. I called out to 'D' who accompanied me and the nice lady into an office building.
I can't go into details about what I did there but needless to say it was 'an experience'. That said, if the product ever does come on the market, I doubt I would buy it! Enough said.
The food was great, 'D' had lamb koftka with tzatziki (sp?) and baked mushrooms with goats cheese and chili. I had rocket and manchego salad and duck, cucumber and spring onion wraps. We shared paprika fries! 'D' did the usual of not bothering to see the dessert menu. The waiter asked if I wanted to share? I guess the guy didn't understand that you cannot cultivate a substantial frame like mine, if you share! Still, I forgave him when he brought my beautiful, baked cheesecake and strawberry compote out!
The picture doesn't really do the food justice, but it was all scrummy and gorgeous and before we knew it, we had been there for hours!Anyway, further on in the search for shopping ... we walked through The Mailbox and down to the Wharfside and Canal Walk. Cold though it was, it was nice to look at the ducks and geese on the canal - so many great places to eat and drink down there too. All very different from when I worked in Birmingham and absolutely hated having to go there by bus and train and foot every day!
We walked back towards the railway station, stopping only to ask likely-looking art students if they knew of an art supply store nearby - success, they did, where I was able to buy some more pencils, varnish and other supplies in the hope that I will take up sketching again some time soon.
Finally stopping off to get some freesias and impromptu, birthday gifts on the way back to the railway station. The flower seller had some very unusual flowers, that neither of us had seen before. They were proteas from South Africa. I didn't feel tempted to get any, even though they did look very distinctive and unusual.
All in all, a lovely day out was had by all. We did do lots of other things, and bought lots of things too - but they're not really for here ......
My beautiful and very talented friend, made this gorgeous calendar for me.
I absolutely love it. It's in some of my favourite colours - orange and brown.
I love orange and brown at this time of year. It makes me think of hot chocolate and satsumas, autumn leaves and scrunching through frost-ridden, muddy fields on long, cold, crisp, country walks. I know .... how many of you seen me doing that lately!
My little elf will now sit in front of my laptop and inspire me when I am supposed to be studying and keep me focused.
'Our Robert' .... we've worked for the same organisation for many years now.
Though confined to a wheelchair, Rob is always game for a laugh, a scam, a discount, (touches side of nose theatrically) - always knows someone who can 'get it for you at a better price'. Rob also always knows the best places to get everything from software to bits of computer gadgetry that you didn't even know you wanted, until of course he told you about it! I used to be Rob's manager and he could drive me crazy.
Rob has a long-time partner and a young son, who is a complete whirlwind and knows how to keep his Dad on his toes, so to speak.
He is seldom seen without his wireless headset (we were a matching pair for a time) until I got bored with mine and moved on ....
Rob - you crack me up, you make me laugh and I would miss you if we didn't work in the same building. I'm going to try and find that picture of you with your Santa hat on too x
Note - I have never looked at my office closely I don't suppose - I haven't a clue why there is a bright red, waste paper basked on a filing cabinet behind Rob's head!!!
I know I sound like a female version of Victor Meldrew, but ....
I really can't believe it ....
After reading (and re-reading) about Rachida Dati, the French Justice Minister, I could not believe that any woman should (or would even want to) return to work just five days after giving birth.
Ms Dati is a 43 year old, unmarried, first time mother to baby daughter, Zohra.
What kind of a message is she sending out to the rest of the world. Those of us that are 'mere mortals'. To me, this is not the message of somebody that is particularly bright. It seems more the actions of someone in the grips of post natal depression, who lives in a world far-removed from the reality of my own. As a mother of four, I know how I felt 5 days after giving birth to all of my children.
I really hope that she and her daughter don't suffer because of this single act of self-publicity and I sincerely hope, for all of womankind, that this 'trend' does not catch on.
'D's pride and joy has just been collected by the lovely tow man. I'm sure 'D' will be pleased when I tell him that the tow man couldn't understand how anyone could afford to put fuel in one of these things! I'm sure 'D' knows this already - so I won't be the one to enlighten him. We love our old bangers - trouble is they are now getting extremely expensive to repair and we are b'rassic-lint - better buy another lotto ticket this week.
What can I say about this photograph? Oldest and dearest friend. We met for lunch on Monday and 'M' arrived wearing this hat. I was speechless (which doesn't happen often). Out we walked to go for lunch. Now bear in mind that I am about 5'11" and 'M' is exaggerating when she says she is 5' tall! We certainly got some looks. Suffice to say that on Tuesday, when she again arrived in my office for lunch, she was not wearing 'the' hat. 'D' asked "Why no hat today?" 'M' replied that "even though ....(me) ..... hadn't said anything, my face had spoken volumes". I think the later assumption that people had been staring, also swayed consensus on 'the' hat being seen again in a professional capacity.
I love her to bits, she has been a very good friend to me - I can live with 'the' hat, but sadly I can't stop my face from 'telling tales' on me ... even when I try really hard not to say anything at all!
For anyone that doesn't know 'M' she is a complete fitness freak. She gets up at some unGodly hour, 4.30am or thereabouts to go running. She will run before work, taking the dog with her. Frequently then go on for a round trip in the gym or the pool before coming into the office. We used to work together, for many years in the same office, until I defected and went to the dark side that was formerly known as 'Leisure'. For a long time it was thought there was much pleasure in Leisure - though I witnessed much, I can't say that it was my own personal experience. We were a strange bunch of people, thrown together through circumstance, with very different personalities. Too complex an issue to be covered in this post - but maybe if I discover my dark side in the future, I might write about it then.
I didn't take this today (though the weather is pretty much the same). I took this one yesterday, sitting in the traffic on the way into the office, from the car window with my mobile. It seemed to sum up the optimism I had for the day.
When I reached the office 'D' (not 'D' hubs) was on a downer - despite our discussion the previous day of trying to maintain a positive mental attitude! Further discussions ensued and we soon put ourselves on the path with the sunshine instead of the snow.
'DMcG' returned from his holidays and was full of Menorca - he had never been there before but had experienced a great time with some of his extended family, taking long daily bike rides (short in comparison with his usual 30 mile stints at home). Several brochures were shown around the office of villas that he would like to buy (if they were cheap enough, if he could afford to live abroad, if he had a 'golden handshake' from work, if ....) I think a few people wanted to piss on his parade - but I was happy to let him keep his dreams .... what the hell have we got without them sometimes?
Well, I guess it's just like any other Friday - except that I am not at work today! I guess when I do I will suffer the usual, annual problem of still writing 2008 until we are well into January!
E & L are busy singing along with the Beach Boys and watching The Simpsons - simultaneous - which is quite a feat, I'm sure you'd agree.
T went to hospital again last night - fainting/fever etc. Still it was good to hear from him as he rarely switches on his mobile these days.
Well I failed miserably to get anything constructive done yesterday. Well, if you discount all the playing about on the laptop. I HAVE TO cure myself of this particular problem as it does nothing at all for my procrastination.
To this end, I am going to limit the amount of time I spend on here and all of my other sites - it is all far too addictive. I think I will give myself computer time as a treat from now on, rather than as a right.
D went off to work in his borrowed van, still worrying about what to do with the car. Should he forget all the money he has spent trying to get it sorted out and give it up as a bad job? Or, should he carry on with it in the hope that they sort it out? Either way it's going to mean more money that we haven't got.
Well I guess I could have tried harder to get up earlier ... but still - this probably means that I have started as I mean to go on.
Considering I am a morning person, I am not always sure why I find it so difficult to get up.
D has already done a good deed for the day; rescuing P and L who were stranded and needed to get to Wolverhampton within the hour. Off he went, without complaint, and took them there. He brought back the bacon for the sarnies that Lily and I were desperate for and the Daily Depression (newspaper: Independent). Off he's gone now in his borrowed van, which he has kindly been loaned until he can figure out what he will do with his 'broken' car. Poor bloke has thrown so much money at it and it's still not working. Our pockets are empty at the moment, well they're less than empty actually but I don't want to get depressed this early in the year so we'll skirt around that issue! LOL
The girls are busy making games (and a whole heap of mess) in the sitting room and I am yet again messing about on the computer when I should be doing other things more boring instead.
I have caught up with:
My emails Facebook My favourite blogs (you know who you are)
I need to:
Get ironing done - failed Weigh myself - failed Go on the treadmill - failed Clean up the kitchen - partially succeeded Try and find all the mobile numbers that the new phone has 'lost'- failed
1. What did you do in 2008 that you'd never done before? I went to Cambridge
2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year? No - failed miserably. Yes
3. Did anyone close to you give birth? No
4. Did anyone close to you die? Yes. My Uncle Harry. RIP
5. What countries did you visit? In 2008 I visited Italy and the Canaries (Fuerteventura)
6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008? Job security, fewer arguments with a significant other, more energy and more sunshine
7. What date from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory? Can't say that any date will do that from 2008
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Making the decision that I have one life and if I don't live it now, I never will
9. What was your biggest failure? My ability to lose weight
10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Only minor things compared with previous years - colds, migraines, pins and needles in fingers etc
11. What was the best thing you bought? Probably my e-reader
12. Whose behaviour merited celebration? Mine!
13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed? T's (sadly)
14. Where did most of your money go? Living, children, books, music, toys ...
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Holidays
16. What song will always remind you of 2008? Mamma Mia - Abba
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? Happier ii. thinner or fatter? Fatter iii. richer or poorer? Poorer
18. What do you wish you'd done more of? Everything that made me smile
19. What do you wish you'd done less of? Wasting time on my laptop
20. How did you spend Christmas? With Grandma and Grandpa in Saddleworth
22. Did you fall in love in 2008? Kind of - but with the same person
23. How many one-night stands? Never ever had one
24. What was your favourite TV program? Well apart from Coronation Street, it would have to be Gavin and Stacey
25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year? Hate is a strong word - so no
26. What was the best book you read? A Year of Wonder by Geraldine Brooks (a tale of the Plague in 1666)
27. What was your greatest musical discovery? English: Duffy Italian: Louise Setara
28. What did you want and get? A holiday in the sunshine
29. What did you want and not get? For my Dad's health to be improved
30. What was your favorite film of this year? Mamma Mia
31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? Dan took me for a lovely meal in Saddleworth as we were up with his parents, I was 46
32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? General levels of improvement in a lot of people's behaviour
33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008? I wouldn't know where to start - there was a lot of black, more than a hint of orange and browns this year too
34. What kept you sane? My children
35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Strangely - probably James May (Top Gear)
36. What political issue stirred you the most? Does Barack Obama's speech count?
37. Who did you miss? Uncle Harry
38. Who was the best new person you met? Apart from all the wonderful friends on-line, probably Lynsey H. Loads of fun
39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008. That I shouldn't get so upset about being disappointed in people, it's life
40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Now this I truly have stolen from the beautiful Macpurp - as I couldn't have chosen a better one myself ...
I have a dream, a song to sing To help me cope with anything If you see the wonder of a fairy tale You can take the future even if you fail I believe in angels Something good in everything I see I believe in angels When I know the time is right for me I'll cross the stream - I have a dream