Wednesday, 11 November 2009
Another learning curve.
In Harrogate we have one of the largest army training colleges in the country, 16 and 17 year olds come to learn "how to be soldiers". For most of them it is the first time they are away from home and the first time they have money in their pockets. In the town we are always aware when they have pass out weekends. The centre is heaving with wiry youths with regulation hair cuts lurking around McDonalds and the night clubs. Some of them look utterly lost, others already have a swagger that is noticed, and admired, by the young ladies of North Yorkshire.
Today was different, they were in town for the Remembrance Ceremony. Not youths but young men, wearing immaculate uniforms, a huge pride in themselves and their futures. An awareness of what their predecessors had given and what they may be asked to give.
Any of the soldiers I saw today could be a casualty of war in the next twelve months. Let's pray not.
Wednesday, 28 October 2009
Afterword. Sunday, 1st November. Reading the above, I can tell just how much I enjoyed the champagne bar. The style is even more effusive than usual, but actually, I don't care. It was a day that was entertaining from start to finish. I had managed to leave my phone and make up at home having done a handbag swap, but I had my lap top so I could email and Twitter, don't panic, nothing is insurmountable. The beflustered, pink and piggy eyed woman was rescued with a complete makeover by the lovely Shanelle at Bobby Brown in Selfridges and I met some fascinating people. Not least the young lady on the train South who inspired me to go back to singing and the delightful gentleman on the evening train, a retired Professor of Economics with whom I had a conversation about Jesuit Art.
Life is for living, seize the day, step forward not back. All cheesy, all cliches, but Wednesday proved to me how true they are.
Oh, and the beard reference ? I am a child of my times, every time I see "Joy of..." I think "sex" and the hippy, freelurve illustrations in the first editions. Never play word association with me unless you can afford therapy.
Saturday, 22 August 2009
The tooth fairy forgot to visit on a regular basis.
I still have my school reports, not convinced I could put my hand to theirs.
I talk to their friends (big sin, big,big sin)
I did not take the day off work to accompany either child to get A' level or GCSE results.
I cheat at Jenga.
I have been known to sing (and horror of horrors dance)in publicWhen they were young I used to sleep with my fingers in my ears - allegedly. (I am sure the picture above was photo shopped)
And do you know ? Despite this benign neglect, (not once did I congratulate them for breathing, walking or even using a knife and fork) they have turned into jolly nice people.
Sunday, 16 August 2009
Wednesday, 12 August 2009
BC had come down from his room on a fridge raid, but stopped off to romp with the lunatic hound, one thing led to another and at 1am BC stumbled back upstairs,
"I'm bleeding". I have to admit my head went under the pillow for a moment, maybe I hadn't heard.
"Mu-um, there's quite a lot of blood" .........................and then the clincher.
"It's dripping on the floor"
By this time Silent One had woken up and gone to investigate. when he found a length of BC's scalp with hair attached (I kid you not) on the floor things became a little more urgent. The dog was beside himself with guilt and was prostrate on the floor, BC was being stoic and Silent One proved his worth by disposing of the evidence.
A&E was not too busy, but the nurse decided his scalp needed to be checked by plastics, so we were sent home with enough bandaging to do a remake of The Mummy and an invitation to return the next morning.
When seen by plastics the decision was made to do clever, gruesome embroidery which I shall tell you nothing about because it makes me feel quite poorly. Not normally squeamish in the slightest, but this was my baby . Then there followed multiple check ups to make sure no brains were escaping (how would they tell ?) and the healing was going well.
After two sets of antibiotics, sutures, clips and glue BC is mended although he will have a Heidleburg quality scar on his brow for the rest of his life. Here's hoping he can think of a story that involves beautiful maidens, swarthy villains and derring do. Being BC it will be a functional recitation of events.......................... if you want embellishment rely on his mother.
Saturday, 8 August 2009
Woken me at 5am to let me know someone walked past the house
Chewed a corner off the rug
Pushed me off the sofa
Eaten my breakfast when I turned away for half a moment
Stood between me and the television at a crucial moment of "Project Runway"
given me a huge halitosis "kiss"
He did however, apparently, return when called, when Silent One took him on a walk this morning and that alone redeems all the sins listed above.
The Hound of the Baskervilles runs wild and free
Wednesday, 5 August 2009
Wednesday, 15 July 2009
And for your information my keyboard is not mightier than his gun.
Monday, 6 July 2009
I always thought of it as "the woman with the bad back."
The picture on my title banner is a pair of shoes I bought some years ago from a dangerously addictive website http://www.italianheels.com/index_en.shtml . Not all of them are hooker shoes, but I would imagine a good few of them could be blamed for appointments with a chiropractor.
I like the connection, albeit subliminal.
Friday, 3 July 2009
The integration of Indian culture in Britain has been going on since the 1840's. Jane Austen writing of the thrill of a Kashmir shawl or new muslins, curries in all their permutations, kedgeree, mulligatawny soup. IPA, gin and tonic. Yoga, the Beatles and the Maharishi, the vibrancy of Belgrave Road in Leicester or shopping at "The Bombay Stores" in Bradford. We are lucky to have a connection with this beautiful country.
What surprised me was what a range of books I had, from the teenage romance (Who didn't love "Far Pavilions" ?) through to the wistful art of Rohinton Mistry. The wild and definitely non pc romps of "Flashman" and the clear observation of William Dalrymple. This huge and diverse country has inspired so many authors, and each creates a different view.
Others who fell under the spell include E M Forster, Colin Thurbron, Greg Roberts and Rudyard Kipling, while their own culture gave us the Mahabarata, the Kama Sutra, Vikram Seth, Arundhati Roy, Salman Rushdie, Aravind Adiga and Tagore the Nobel prize winning poet. It is a rich and exciting heritage. Do not ignore it.
Mark Twain sums it up far better than I ever could
The land of dreams and romance, of fabulous wealth and fabulous poverty, of splendour and rags, of palaces and hovels, of famine and pestilence, of genii and giants and Aladdin lamps, of tigers and elephants, the cobra and the jungle, the country of hundred nations and a hundred tongues, of a thousand religions and two million gods, cradle of the human race, birthplace of human speech, mother of history, grandmother of legend, great-grandmother of traditions, the one sole country under the sun that is endowed with an imperishable interest for alien prince and alien peasant, for lettered and ignorant, wise and fool, rich and poor, bond and free, the one land that all men desire to see.
Monday, 22 June 2009
Friday, 19 June 2009
Friday, 12 June 2009
Cast your mind back to times spent with young male students, (go on, you know you can if you try, the therapy won't be too bad.) and remember the laundry basket.
There seem to be two types of YMS, the "I looked at it so it needs washing again" or the "I have peeled it off and it's standing in the corner over there" variety, both generate vast, daunting heaps of washing. Boy child is a member of the former group.
The following is a direct reporting of a conversation that took place over three days on his return from uni.
"Have I got your washing yet ?"
"Oh, er, right, er, what ?"
"That stuff on your floor covering the carpet"
"Well can I have it please ? I want to get it going"
"Ooh, washing, ok, er what wants washing ?"
Things are becoming a little terse by now
"Bedding, clothes, more clothes possibly. I'm not actually certain BC as it is your washing, oh and don't forget to check your pockets"
"Pockets, why ?"
"Because the best way to ruin a memory stick is for it to go through the machine, and if I find any money it is mine" (I find it best to try and speak his language)
Time passes, dynasties fall, Big Brother is cancelled.
"Have I got your washing BC ?"
"FFS BC, yes now, and check your pockets !"
Like a slow moving torrent the clothes made their way downstairs
"Thanks BC, so, everything here ?"
"Er, yeah, well I don't know, guess so"
"Have you checked your pockets"
"Oh God Mum you do go on......"
"So, you have checked ?"
And that is how I came to be in possession of £15.
Wednesday, 10 June 2009
Sunday, 7 June 2009
Saturday, 6 June 2009
When I got into the senior school I became a member of the school choir so also got to wear this, not actually a hat, but certainly a head covering. The smell of ironed linen can still make me want to burst into song.
Friday, 29 May 2009
Not the soppy, wandering around after you doing good stuff, angels that the internet and crystal huggers seem to be rather fond of these days but spirits, metaphorical or actual. Vengeful, guiding or just plain "I might have drink too much because I thought I saw...." angels.
Two of my favourite books are in this weeks heap. "The Vintners Luck" by Elizabeth Knox and "Knowledge of Angels" by Jill Paton Walsh, read them, please, they are wonderful.
And before anyone asks, yes I do own "Angels and Demons" and it is not from shame that it does not appear above, just that the house is so untidy I can't find it.
*I'm no angel, but I've spread my wings a bit. ~Mae West
Philosophy will clip an angel's wings. ~John Keats
I'm loving angels instead ~ Robbie Williams
Thursday, 28 May 2009
Wednesday, 20 May 2009
The award exists to be passed on (as they all should) so below are the rules:
1. You have to pass it on to 5 other fabulous blogs in a post.
2. You have to list 5 of your fabulous addictions in the post.
3. You must copy and paste the rules and the instructions below in the post.
Instructions: On your post of receiving this award, make sure you include the person that gave you the award and link it back to them. When you post your five winners, make sure you link them as well. To add the award to your post, simply right-click, save image, then “add image” it in your post as a picture so your winners can save it as well. To add it to your sidebar, add the “picture” widget. Also, don’t forget to let your winners know they won an award from you by emailing them or leaving a comment on their blog.
Shoes, in almost all shapes, colours and heights. Prices, well that's another story. I am tempted to sin so often but fortunately the memories of my bank manager stop me sometimes. Why do I like shoes ? For a lot of my working life I have had to present a corporate image, which often is not really who I am, hence "quirky" "extravagant" "eccentric" shoes. They are there to remind me of the true TR. (Also, even if I put on weight, my shoes still fit !)
Weekend Newspapers There is no better way to fritter away a weekend than lolling on the sofa with a selection of newsprint. I know you can read it all online, but it is just not the same as real hard copy. The papers are filleted for easy reference, Business, gone. Motoring, gone. Sport, gone. Money, don't make me laugh. Then the other sections are mulled over, making notes and tearing out little bits of information that "might be useful - one day". Finally on to the magazines for the pretty pictures and fantasy of other peoples lives. Heaven.
Food and cooking for friends. I love to cook, I love to eat, if there was ever proof of the axiom you can't have a thin chef I am that proof. Food, like sex, can be so many things, comforting, exciting, on occasions dull but always a perfect way to show somebody you care about them.
Art Galleries The peace and quiet of an art gallery, the opportunity to revisit old friends, to challenge yourself with new work, the wonderful shops where I have spent far too much money over the years. The excitement of a new catalogue at a well curated exhibition.
OK ,trailing around the Louvre being slowly pummeled to death by surly school trips can take the edge off a bit, but to get a bench in front of a wonderful Botticelli or a favourite Turner makes it all worthwhile. I can also confirm that art galleries are a wonderful place for a little light flirting, eyes meeting as you stand in front of a picture, the chance to make a few intelligent bon mots, the meeting of like minds. Who needs a bar when you've got the Bargello ?
My children To be brutally honest a few years ago they may not have figured in this list, which is, of course, far more a reflection of me than them. Now though, they are a real passion. Hopefully not on the way of a helicopter parent but because I find them funny, challenging, entertaining and it is such a joy to see them beginning to live their lives as individuals. What a shame I didn't find out until now.
and now I pass on this award to 5 of my favourite bloggers, and my apologies to anyone who has already received this particular accolade, but remember, you can never have too much of a good thing.
http://justme-randomramblings.blogspot.com/ because Twitter just isn't enough
http://katyboo1.wordpress.com/ I suspect she has, deservedly, received every award in the blogosphere, but I know there will be deep and simmering obsessions that should be exposed
http://mmeguillotine.blogspot.com/ Because she needs distracting at the moment, writes beautifully and will forgive me my first addiction
http://razorkitty.blogspot.com/ to see if "The Apprentice" counts as an obsession
http://itsmostlyaboutme.blogspot.com/ because she needs to have fun writing, now her exams are over