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The Learning Process

So this week I have mostly been trying to work out how everything works in the matchbox I currently call home whilst surrounded by towering heaps of stuff I really don't remember owning but have apparently been paying to store.

The rise of the machines...Collapse )

Other plans this weekend are to sort everything out and find a place for it and to take all unwanted/unnecessary stuff to charity shops and recycling so that I can put up my Ikea shelving, rescue my books and DVDs from the last of the storage and reach the switch for the boiler. A trip to the laundrette may or may not also be on the cards depending on my Google-fu (or lack of).

The Lone Gremlin

A moving sagaCollapse )

Once all this is sorted I will hopeful be able to get back to dancing which I have not been doing for the past few months (a sad thing which, as well as meaning that I have ballooned into a slug who does not fit most of her clothes, means I will be attending DERT as a hanger on rather than a dancer as, as well as a lack or practice, my concentration is still dodgy which I think may be a bit of problem when dancing at speed with swords) and then sort out things from there.

On the reenactment front, I've sent in my forms for Kentwell so now I just have to lose enough weight to fit back into my kit (also need to do this for dancing). Now I am a lone flat dweller again, I hope to start digging into the sacred fabric stash (itself a major part of the stuff pile but there will be no getting rid of my beautiful fabric horde) and making much needed new kit, but, realistically, there is no way I will manage to get new kit sorted for this May whereas weight loss (especially now I won't be hiding in my bedroom every evening and can cook meals for myself rather than relying on sandwiches and takeout) is faintly more realistic. Time to get the bicycle out and maybe take up jogging...


Well Enough

Have just spent a week away in the midst of cat-sitting for Snowy the Slayer. Of course, I spent that week tudoring and dancing so there also had to be a cat-sitter for the cat-sitter at this point.

Snowy is a lovely black cat who likes to sit on you in the most inconvenient manner possible for as long as she possibly can and, when she's not doing that, she's out bringing death and destruction to the small and squeaky/squawky in the surrounding countryside despite carrying enough bells on her collar to supply a Morris side. Presumably many a small rodent or bijou bird has been in the process of thinking 'Bloody hell, not another Morris dance...' before meeting it's doom. Either that, or everything within a 3 mile radius is profoundly and inexplicably deaf. Anyhow, I have spent most of the mornings cleaning up little dead bodies and trying to catch the ones who are mobile. (Apparently, once they're through the kitchen door they stop being her problem and automatically become mine judging by the off-handed way she just abandons her catch on coming through the cat-flap). Still, it's nice to borrow a pet.

HolibobsCollapse )

Last night with Snowy last night. She celebrated by bringing me 4 mice in various states of existence which really helped with my packing and cleaning.
Roll on Warwick and Sidmouth folk festivals

One Small Step for Northwest Morris

Southwell Folk Festival has, I think, the shortest Morris procession I have ever encountered (as opposed to the sadly missed Gate to Southwell Festival whose procession was anything but short).

Just dancing and drinking in the rainCollapse )

In cycling news, I was saved from going for a swim this evening by my morning cycle to work combining the 2 activities for me, which was nice. Sort of had to wring myself out at work having trudged up the stairs leaving a trail of water like some sea monster from Doctor Who with my trainers merrily blowing bubbles and making squelchy noises.

Fitness Attempt

It having been a bit of a peculiar year in various ways, I have managed to put on a fairly substantial amount of weight to the point where fitting into clothes is starting to become a problem (Thank the gods for Festival type clothing with its one-size fits all approach and general elasticity of its trousers!) I am a skinflint and refuse to buy more clothes just because I happen to barely fit in the ones I currently own (which has made my workplace attire somewhat eclectic) but, far more importantly, I need to fit into dancing and tudor kit! In particular, I wore my usual Tudor kit for Mayday this year and, as I laced up the bodice, was slightly alarmed as my boobs tried to rise over my head. If it hadn't been for my partlet, I'd have been exploding out all over the place. Since partlets are out for the coming Tudor year, I'd got to be able to fit back into the thing in a decent manner before the end of June as I have no time or energy to make a new outfit at this particular time and I don't think the visitors to Kentwell really expect ballistic busts as part of their Tudor experience. It's bad enough that I've cut my quite long hair into a bob (well, someone did it for me, which is a far better idea all round) which, while better for dancing and general life, means I can no longer keep my coif on properly, a fact quickly recognised by my arch-nemesis/equine favourite, Comfrey who took every opportunity to whip my coif off with his teeth in front of everyone he could. Nyaff!

Anyhow, the upshot of all this is that I've decided that cycling into work is a really good idea (this decision may also have been heavily influenced by the increase in roadworks and the decrease in parking in Oxford).

What happened next...Collapse )

Have no idea if it is helping my health or hurrying me towards an early grave but it is saving me money on petrol so there you go.


It's been a bit of a mixed summer. On one hand, I've been living in a house where the landlords kept going into my room to rearrange things and kept trying to make me one of the family (which was weirdly worse) and where everything was light coloured (the sitting room was white, both carpet and settees) and had to be kept pristine. On the other hand, Sidmouth with Morts was amazing (I will never be able to forget the moves to the Steps version of Tragedy), Brussels with Mabels was great (sour raspberry beer islovely and every bar should have a startled looking taxidermied cow outside), some cracking tours with Mons Meg, lovely tudory times at Kentwell (rode my favourite horse for the first time and got to do some log surfing) and had a nicely chilled holiday at Whitby learning to tumble.
Was talked into interviewing for the job above mine by my uber-boss despite the fact that it had been upgraded and I didn't think I had the experience for it. It won't matter they said. The reason given for me not getting said job was that I didn't have the experience, pointed out as though this was something that should have been obvious to me at the start. Bit tongue and didn't point out that that's what I'd said in the 1st place... Never mind, I just hope that I get a new boss soon since I've been doing two people's jobs since April (one well above my pay grade) which was fine when I really didn't want to go home and it was stay at work or go to the cinema (although I've seen a lot of films this summer) and I could cheerfully stay working til 9pm but now I've moved. I am now a water person and living on a boat (even if I am still trying to put my stuff away and therefore sleeping on the settee) and I now want to come home at the end of the day (seriously it's lovely. Everyone is scruffy, I've found my people.). Anyway, t'will be interesting to see what happens next

Random Goings On

While I have never thought of myself as super flexible, neither did I think of myself as particulary stiff. Boy, was I wrong.

Where I find I can look like an idiot in any fitness class you choose...Collapse )

Mabels DERT practice was fun if bruise invoking. We managed to change three bits of the dance which will be a lovely surprise for the one member of the side who wasn't there and we had a fun tour of Caversham in the evening. One pub we didn't dance at due to a party over-running had a lot of folks dressed as Rockers, duck' arse hair dos and all. Brylcream city. I particularly admired the bloke who had managed the quiff and the duck's arse all around his, not inconsiderable, bald spot. That's dedication and I salute him for it.

In sad news, it turns out that my phone did not survive it's day in the freezer (where I accidently left my bag. No, I've no idea why either) which means I will have to hunt for a new one. Buggeration. At least Catface is doing better than said defunct technology with the recent snowfall but only just. She doesn't like seeing it fall and refuses to even look at it and is now to be found either hiding under the bed or the settee in the fond hope, I assume, that if she can't see it, it won't be there.

Finally, I went to see Kingsman at the cinema. It's a reasonably funny film in the style of the Roger Moore James Bond era and has some wonderfully likeable leads including a great female hench-villain but I don't think it's quite as non-sexist as the director obviously believes it to be if his interview on Radio 4 was anything to go by. Still, there's worse ways to pass the time.

Following the Bard

Plough Sunday was lovely but chilly. (That said, I was the only one standing around without a coat on. Apparently you can take the gremlin out of Newcastle but...). Apparently I still look really worried whilst I'm dancing but I put this down to a weirdly shaped forehead cause I look anxious when dancing rapper too and I'm really not; my forehead just looks that way in repose.

Shakespeare what I have seenCollapse )

Managed to go swimming for the first time in ages tonight. Am still finding sand in my swimsuit even though it's been though the washing machine at least twice that I know of since Whitby. There can't be much beach left.

Anyhow, Zumba again tomorrow. Let the flailing commence!


The joy of ZumbaCollapse )

Speaking of swimming, I am seriously thinking of entering for the Great North Swim this June. Gone are the days when this took place in random pools around the North East (I remember Gosforth pool with it's high chemical content resulting in me being unable to see properly for a couple of day after a 2 mile swim. My optician father looked at my eyes, shrugged and said 'You'll be fine. Probably'.) Now it's gone UK wide and outdoors. There is a choice of various different venues and dates across the country, most of which clash with Rapper, Morris and re-enactment dates but I think I can do the Windemere one which has a Friday option so I could do that and then bomb down the country to Kentwell to be a Tudor by the Saturday. Failing that, it would probably have to be the London event which they still haven't released a date for. But in the meantime, I should probably organise myself into some sort of training schedule which I shall do as soon as I get the feeling back in my thighs after last night. (This will hopefully happen by Sunday since I'm supposed to be dancing with Morts for Plough Sunday. High knees. Ouch!!!)

Random Soundbite Looking for a Home

I was listening to the radio on the way home (note working car radio! How chuffed with myself am I!) and the Radio 4 news was reporting on the hostage situation with the Charlie Hebdo killers. This included a brief soundbite from a Hostage negotiation expert in the British Police who basically said that sometimes, at the start of a hostage situation, communication can take place through a window but this case was obviously too dangerous for that so all negotiation would take place over the phone and that was it. I'm sure she's on the money with that bit of procedure but given that this report was after the situation had come to an end and the newsreaders were discussing the death of the killers and some of the hostages it did seem like a bit of a random and pointless insert.