My Shop (work in progress!)

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Action packed weekend #2

On Thursday my future housemate Phil came round for tea and then we went to see The Dark Knight. We can both highly recommend it, plenty to laugh at, loads of action, a few cringey "ewww" moments and shovelfuls of darkness. Even though it was a bit slow to get going and was a bit long (2.5 hours) I could definitely sit through it again. Heath Ledger's performance was spellbinding. I used to think he was a bit of a cheesy actor but not after this.
Friday I headed out on the town with Hazel, Zoe, Iqbal and Ignacio, and later joined by Phil. We frequented a couple of bars before ending up in Concrete. It was a bit rubbish though as the DJ was playing very shuffly indie that was boring to dance to, so Phil, Hazel and I left early.
Saturday Phil, Emma and I headed through to Maryport to attend some of the blues festival. We baked ourselves sitting on the hill amongst the hoardes to watch the bands, ate chips and curry sauce, sat on the marina and enjoyed the sea breeze, found a pub down a back street and enjoyed the best band of the day "Blues Positive" (in our opinion), commented on the amount of scary men and women in Maryport (think dodgy tattoos, muscles and a fuck off attitude), got the train home and chatted at my place for a while drinking cups of tea. Very rock and roll.
By the end of the evening I could no longer speak. I thought this was because I had spent the last two nights in loud places and therefore had to shout into people's ears, but no. I woke up this morning feeling like I'd been hit by a bus, stiff neck, runny nose, and sounding like a blues singer.
Today I have sweated all the water out my body carrying two bags of shopping back from Tesco in the intense heat, recovered and then just about had enough energy to change my bed clothes. Not all excitement then.

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Action packed weekend - Sunday

Image from

Sunday was a much more sedate affair. Phil, Hazel and I sat chatting drinking tea and coffee, all in a vaguely zombie-like state. They headed off to their own places to have showers. I mooched around the house for a bit and had a bit of a doze on the sofa with Marwood.

As it was such a nice day, and there hadn't been very many of those of late, Hazel and I decided to go for a walk. I despair of not having a car on days like that as I can't get out into the countryside. I found out that Hazel also despairs as she often doesn't have anyone to go for a walk with so hopefully a Sunday jaunt could become a regular occurrence.

We walked all the way round, looked at the craft exhibition they had on in a boathouse, bought a delicious ice cream and then decided to walk all the way round again! There were a million cute dogs being walked around, especially two puppies which I think were Irish setters.

All in all I had the most fun and sociable weekend I have had in a long time and I hope to have many more like it!

Action packed weekend - Saturday

Sadly I didn't get much of a lie-in on Saturday morning as Marwood wouldn't let me sleep in much past 9am. Irritating but I still love the little bugger! I bummed around for most of the day until I met up with Phil, Hazel and Zoe to head through to Brampton for the live folk festival.

When we arrived it pissed it down. Zoe dropped off her car at her parents' house whilst Phil, Hazel and I got a delicious burrito from a Mexican food stall. We sheltered in the beer tent and the shower soon passed. The sun actually came out then!

The first band we saw were called 3 Daft Monkeys, they were a lot of fun and probably my favourite band of the night. A guy on bass, another guy playing acoustic guitar and doing lead vocals and a lady on fiddle and backing vocals. I'm surprised they played so well as they had been at another festival in Dorset and their set had been at 2am. They'd had to drive through the night to get up here in time for their slot at 7pm. They went down really well and had everyone dancing. Sadly their set had to come to an end and we headed off to the other tent.

After dancing around like idiots the other tent was much more sedate and genteel. The age of the audience was much higher in this tent as there were seats. There weren't enough seats for us to sit together so we huddled along the side of the tent. We were glared at a lot by one woman as we weren't listening to Thea Gilmore in rapturous silence. She sang lovely songs and had a beautiful voice but we had been up and dancing so it was a bit of a downer. It was almost time for the next band to start in what we had nicknamed "the dance tent" so we headed back there in the hope of being near the front again.

Little did we know that Bellowhead were quite so popular. We managed to get a spot fairly near the front but not nearly as close as we had been for 3 Daft Monkeys. The tent became absolutely packed eventually, although I wasn't as crushed as the time I saw Red Hot Chili Peppers on Glasgow Green. Bellowhead had a much more confident and polished performing style to the Monkeys, and as such they lost something. They seemed to play with a bit of an arrogant swagger which didn't endear me to them much. Having said that though they had the whole tent dancing and were jolly good fun. They were hotfooting it up and down the country too as on Sunday they played the Folk Proms!

This is turning into quite an epic post! Special mention must go to the strange group that we enjoyed commenting on. There was an older man with a fairly large group of teenage boys. We decided that he was teaching them the ways of debauchery and nicknamed them the Gay Scouts. Their motto? Come Prepared of course.

When the evening came to an end around midnight we had to try and get a taxi back to Brampton. No mean feat but fortunately it was third time lucky and we eventually got back to Carlisle just before 1am. Zoe headed straight home as she was drunker than we were. Phil and Hazel decided they would crash at mine as although we were knackered we were all wide awake.

We all sat huddled in my front room wrapped in several blankets, put the fire on and watched Hot Fuzz on DVD. By the end of the film Phil looked as if he could fall asleep anywhere and I wasn't far behind him. Much faffing later we eventually managed to get the sleeping arrangements and airbeds sorted.

A fantastic evening was had by all!

Estimated time in bed: 3am

Action packed weekend - Friday

It was Phil's birthday on Friday so I met up with him, Hazel, Zoe and Iqbal for a night out. Hazel was meant to meet me at my house around "8-ish" which in the end turned out to be 9!

Fortunately when Phil, Hazel and I got to the pub the band hadn't started yet and Zoe and Iqbal had managed to get a good table near the front. The band in question were the Olly Allcock Band, who I had never heard of but are apparently quite famous in Cumbria. Olly is meant to be the blues guitarist in Cumbria.

The band consist of Olly on lead guitar and main vocals, Roz on sax and backing vocals, Ed on bass and backing vocals, and "Harry" on drums. They are all excellend musicians and the pub was packed. Harry is fairly new to the band so he had to pass the audience test, which he did with ease by performing a stonking drum solo which lasted a good three minutes at least.

Lots of drunk people did embarrassing dad dancing and we had a bit of a boogie round our table but there wasn't much room as the pub was so packed. When the band finished we were all up for more of a boogie. Therefore we went to a bar called the Gilded Lily as you can get your hand stamped to get into a club called Concrete for free. Friday nights are best in there as they play lots of indie tunes rather than the banging dance stuff they play on a Saturday.

Iqbal and Phil wanted to go at about 2am and as I wanted a lift from Iqbal I sadly had to go too. I don't think I could've danced much longer anyway!

Estimated time in bed: 2.30am.

Feeling better

Things between Vince and I are still going well. I am surprised at how little it feels awkward that we are still living in the same house but not together. I think that we will be able to be good friends once we've dealt with everything and have a bit of distance from each other. I have actually taken a big step forward this week where our relationship is concerned, and although I still have feelings for him I no longer want to try and work things out and am happy to be just friends. I haven't quite got to the point where I'd be happy if he started seeing someone else yet, but it is still early days!

He is going to be moving out at the end of August and I was worried that I was going to end up living on my own and be Mad Cat Lady but fortunately my friend's ex boyfriend doesn't get on so well with his flatmates so is going to move in with me. So that's another load off my mind!

Saturday, 12 July 2008

Where I am From Photo Gallery

From Whitehaven Harbour looking up to Kells. The chimney used to vent gases from the mines. It once got struck by lightning and the gases ignited so now has the nickname The Candlestick.

The same view but from Kells looking down to the harbour.

Jonathan Swift Cottage. Apparently the view of the harbour from here inspired him to create the Liliputians (but tthis could just be an urban legend).

Fishing nets on Whitehaven harbour.

Buttermere on a cold summer's day.

The view from my childhood home in good weather.

The view from my childhood home in not so clement weather.
Please click on the photos if you would like to see them bigger.
All photos taken by me.

Sunday, 6 July 2008

All change

My blog has finally reached three figures...

I have not been in a blogging mood of late. I have been a bit preoccupied with real life to get bogged down with cyberspace.

Vince, my long term partner, broke up with me three weeks ago. The bottom fell out of my world and is only now starting to be fixed again. I am hopeful that we can sort things out but I am not that optimistic as he doesn't seem to want to try.

Also I found out that I have polycystic ovaries, which at least explains why I am spotty, hairy and have been putting on weight quite rapidly. Doctors orders are to do more exercise, but as I am so knackered by the end of a working day I am struggling with the motivation for this.

Not much else to report. I am still temping, secretary to a lovely consultant psychiatrist and hopeful that my job will become permanent eventually. The NHS never do anything quickly so I am not holding my breath.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Where I'm From Poem

My second mum wrote a poem following these guidelines so I thought I'd have a go myself. Here is the first draft:

Where I Am From

I am from marbles and Marmite, new leather
suite, cat hair and sloe gin.

I am from the extensions and pine kitchen,
rugged mountains and bleak coast.

I am from dainty cherry and protecting elder,
wind singing in the pylons.

I am from Sunday dinners and blue eyes,
Clatworthy, Powditch and Flegg.

I am from talking too much, long baths,
baking, Grand Prix and Doom.

I am from tarot cards and physics -
the cold light of stars and the Land of Faery.

I am from Whitehaven, Wales and Norfolk,
trackless fens, fells and bottomless lakes.

I am from Peking duck, stew, leek and
potato soup and chutney.

I am from Esme's naked budgie,
the missing train and ookum flookum.

I am from the red photograph box, the out
of tune piano, the cupboard under the stairs.