Monthly Archives: July 2009

Chips for firsts and strawberries for seconds

seemed the only sensible course of action after finally getting around to explaining to youngest sibling, her family, male parent, and only aunt about the impending complete change of life.

It’s very exhausting doing this kind of explaining to people who never understood why I did what I did in the first place twenty or more years ago, why I’m now not doing it any more.

But, the chips were restorative, and the strawberries were the concession to healthy eating… as well as the fact I love strawberries.

It’s all wrong, I tell you.

Today I have made several discoveries that have caused me to return to my abode, shaking my head with disbelief, and wondering what the world is coming to. As well as needing a lie down to recover.

I stood in the public library, and stared at the ceiling for a while. You see, a long time ago, I learnt to swim in that building. You have not mis-read that. Thirty or more years ago, the building that now houses the public library and Art Gallery and Museum, was used for different purposes, one of which was the swimming pool. I was never particularly good at any kind of sport, but enjoyed swimming, if left to my own pace. I also happened to prefer back-stroke, and therefore spent much time looking at that ceiling. Especially on the day I did my mile badge. Which took me about twice as long as almost everyone else.

Then, once I’d recovered from that, I took myself off to the very nice gardens we used to play in a lot when spending time at our grandparents, who lived nearer to them than we did. There, I saw the addition of fences all around the pond and along the river. (This I understood – the swans always could be a bit vicious, and most of us fell in the pond at least once until we learnt to be more careful.) Then, I toddled along to see the birds at the aviary… to discover it is now the Aviary Cafe, minus birds. So, I had a cup of coffee and some cake instead.

Still, if I will stay away from an area for the best part of quarter of a century, then when I come to re-explore it, I must expect to find changes!

And the beginning of a new era.

Yet, bizarrely, it sees me back in a place I knew so, so well when I was a teenager.

So, I’ve been reacquainting myself with the area, discovering only three shops are where I expect to find them, (which is not unreasonable after 26 years away) and finding out about bus routes. I never needed to know those, as I cycled or walked everywhere before. I’ll still walk pretty much everywhere, but, for out of town places, I’m going to need those buses! I’m also over the other side of town from where I was before, so it’s interesting seeing it from that perspective.

I’m kind of counting the rest of this week as holiday, as most of my belongings are not with me, so I can’t unpack!! I do have the essentials, including my computer, but little else (OK, so most people wouldn’t consider a clarinet an essential… but, as you’ve probably gathered by now, I’m not most people!)

But, I am very, very tired.

End of an era

It’s been such a strange week, and an especially strange weekend, so many things have been done for the last time. And tonight is the last night I will sleep here.

So, here I sit, surrounded by my goods and chattels, all packed and ready for moving them over the next ten days or so. I move first, then round two, as I go off for a week’s worth of children’s work, and round three if needed, when I’ve finished the work.

Best get that sleep, I’m going to need it!


The accounts balance.

Suffice it to say the errors that have taken the last four days to track down in between weddings and opticians appointments and cinema trips and running away for a few hours, were not mine. I did exceptionally well not to blow a complete gasket… but that would be messy.

Actually, it’s only one of each of the other things that have been occupying me this week. Though, several trips for the purposes of organ practice were also undertaken. It was lovely to play for a wedding where most of the congregation sang!!

I have, however, discovered I will be needing new glasses, which is a bit of a nuisance. It’s going to have to wait a month or two. I am finally becoming less short sighted, this is a novelty.

So, now I can turn my attention to the task that I should’ve been getting on with, but have been thoroughly distracted… tomorrow, the boxes, the parcel tape, varieties of back packs and suitcases will emerge.

Pah to St Swithin…

grudge-bearing saint that he is. Maybe I should’ve left the glitter to fool him into thinking it had rained enough around here!

Here was me, with a completely unexpected free day, an all day bus pass with a wide area to pootle about in, and what does he go and do. Make it rain All Day. It’s still raining. And don’t anyone dare tell me it’s good for the garden and the plants. I hear more than plenty, thank you. (Though, why the tomatoes still have to be watered twice daily with this amount of rain, is a deep mystery, and something I’m happy to leave as mysterious.)

It made for a multi-centred day out in my attempts to keep reasonably dry. Three small towns have been explored, as well as their charity shops and coffee shops. I even managed to get a free coffee in one place, courtesy of my loyalty card. I’d been feeling marginally guilty about ordering the very largest mug of coffee, then remembered about the loyalty card. I think it’s taken three years to fill it with it’s nine stamps to get my tenth cup free….

Hopefully, I’ll sleep better tonight, and the motivation will return tomorrow!

Almost all found, but more lost.

Well, except the clarinet reeds and the motivation. Everything else, curiously, was exactly where it was meant to be… I just assumed I’d put them all in the Green Box as I’d been in a rush. (The Green Box is the Holding System for everything in transit in my room… there’s no spare room in it at the moment!)

My patience has also gone missing, though. This could have Consequences, though I got through the early evening without any Consequences.

In between times, I’m having a bit of a nostalgic moment with Holst’s Planet Suite! No, nothing to do with remembering the Moon Landing of 40 years ago – I think I vaguely remember something, but it really didn’t impinge on me at the age of four. No, it’s much more personal… It’s the only piece of classical music I can ever remember my tone deaf brother being able to identify! To my total amazement. Probably to his. Though, at the time he was working at a theatre with the lighting department and he heard it every night for several weeks. It had nothing to do with the fact his elder sister tortured him daily with classical music from either of her two instruments or her trusty radio/cassette player for years! I was informed it all sounded the same… Which to him, I am convinced, it did. I’ve only come across a very few people who are genuinely tone deaf, and he was one of them. Still, these days I can listen to it without getting tearful or having to turn it off, which I had to do for a number of years after he died, (nearly 18 years ago) and only get kind of wistful, just wondering.

Now – whilst I’m in wondering mode, which is better than being De-Motivated, or Impatient, shall I deal with the glitter crisis? Sorting out boxes of cards, with poorly stuck on glitter, (but all cherished cards as they were lovingly made by those with only small single digits in their age!) is a Bad Idea when wearing a new black T-shirt. I think I shall get the sellotape out and deal with it now!

Who’s got ’em?

Along with the box of clarinet reeds, vital pieces of paper for the first week in August, and the new toothbrush, all motivation has gone missing, at a most inconvenient moment.

If you find them, please send them home….

They’ve not gone and hidden themselves in the wrong boxes, as I’ve not got the boxes out yet. If the mere threat of the Packing Boxes is doing this, and all I did was look for the tape for reconstructing the boxes, it’s going to be a long, long week ahead.

Relinquishing and re-claiming

More and more, over the last few months, tasks or projects that have been mine have been handed over to other people. The process has speeded up, and the last three weeks have been particularly full of those kinds of things, with the exception of a three day event relating to part of next years work.

However, by Monday all, bar one commitment, should be complete. Well, the accounts may be a little way into next week… I’m having trouble getting motivated to finish them! I need a proper deadline, I think, not just my mental one, which has failed miserably to keep me on task there.

A couple of the relinquishments I have minded more than others. There are relinquishments of routines and ways of being that have been part of my life for a long time now, and it’s not easy to turn away from that. Mostly, however, I have been more than thankful to stop.

Yet, alongside the relinquishing, there’s also been a re-claiming process going on. Somewhere, somehow, I’d vanished under many, many layers of professional persona, in too many different areas. Part of what’s been happening now is a steadfast refusal to be anything but fully myself from now on. It’s very confusing to those who haven’t known me long, and who have only seen me in one, maybe two contexts, but those who have known me longer, on the whole, are commenting that I seem much, much more content with myself, and happy in ways they’ve not seen for a long time.

I’m also reclaiming many personal responsibilities that I had not been responsible for a good number of years. That’s a wee bit scary, but good as well! It had annoyed me on so many levels, but I’d not been aware of it until I’d taken them back. So, tomorrow, it’s back to tackling various bits of officialdom!


You know, I’ve come to an interesting place in my thinking about Life, the Universe and Everything Else. It’s that I’m really very content with where I’m at, and I really don’t mind at all that the future is looking as totally unsettled and chaotic as it is.

There’s been several distinct groups of people in my life of late… and by far the most trying have been all those with advice, and intense questioning about what I’m going to do with the rest of my life. (After those who think it’s All Their Fault, despite all I’ve said about it being No One’s Fault.) And, they are displaying far more obvious signs of nervousness and worry about my lack of organisation than I am! All I know is I currently have a part time job that might or might not have another part time job in the same institution to go alongside it. I have somewhere to stay for the immediate future, and I have options for moving nearer to the work place. I also have an option for something totally different…

I am applying for all kinds of other part time jobs, and I really do quite like the idea of working in a coffee shop kind of place or a supermarket or cleaning. And, there’s always music work.

Deep down, I’m probably the most content with me, with life, and with God than I have been for more years than I want to think about… and that’s far more important to me than having the rest of my life sorted. Now. It will sort… and the next year will see that happening, but for now? I’m happy.