Friday, March 31, 2006

Oh no....

I didn't have a very good night. Woke coughing and wheezing. Haven't mentioned on my blog, I think, that recently my very mild to non-existent asthma has taken a turn for the worse and I am now a wheezy person and the owner of two 'puffers' as my mum used to call them, a brown steroid one and a blue one, but I'm not totally sure how and when to sue them, and I'm worse at night, and what with that and taking the same anti-depressants my mum used to take, it's downright scary. Not only that but I threw away quite a few after mum died, not realising I would need them!

Also my throat is very slightly sore, and I have a poorly sore finger which I am treating by sitting it in a mug of very hot salty water - not actually this minute, but now and again.

When I did sleep, in the early hours, it was so weird, I found myself in a house where suddenly my parents were there again, in their pyjamas, my mum telling me she couldn't breathe and asking why I hadn't brought her up a cup of tea, so I was in the kitchen doing it, and crying, and telling myself this is only a dream, they have died, but when I took the tea up, no, there they were, and I cried more cos they were ill and we had let mum's place in the home go when she died, so I would have to leave and go back to work, and how would they manage at home? I actually thought of seeing them dead, which I did, so I knew I hadn't imagined it, and I had been to their funerals, but no, here they were needing looking after. I decided to ring my bereavement counsellor, Viv, and ask her what to do!!!! I think this dream is brought on by my secretary having time off to look after her elderly and ill parents, who are taking it in turns to be in hospital or at home needing 24 hour care, and she is looking as stressed as I was this time last year!!!

I am hoping to have most of today off to potter about and do domestic things and iron jeans, etc, but I must go into work for a bit and finish my newsletter..then home to pack and get ready for the weekend away!! Looking forward to it, only feeling weird on account of the dream, the coughing and wheezing, sore throat and poorly red swollen finger. Will probably spend Saturday in the local A&E having my finger lanced!!

Now who would have thought I was an optimist? Clive suggested this morning, when he brought in my tea, and I listed my woes, that I wasn't well enough to go away, and I should stay at home. Answers on a post card.......

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Guess what..he's an animal!!!

I encouraged someone we all know and lvoe - oh, make that, most of us know him, do the personality tests. He e-mailed me the results. Did I laugh......we all have new nicknames now, and so appropriate.....

**You Are Animal***

A complete lunatic, you're operating on 100% animal instincts.
You thrive on uncontrolled energy, and you're downright scary.
But you sure can beat a good drum.
"Kill! Kill!"

Even if you started out not knowing who I was talking about, I bet you do now......

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

I nearly forgot about this.....

...Remember two themes in past was about me getting a new desk, and how excited I was....and the second was the Chocolate Orange theme - my experience of trying to get into a reluctant orange inspired several chocolate orange themed blogs....

So it was greatly amusing, the day I was clearing out the drawers in my old desk, to find an old Christmas card sent to me not this Christmas, but Christmas 2004, (I don't clear out my drawers much!)by DC, the very person who gave me the chocolate obviously entertained me so much I kept the card all that time...

I bought it home a couple of months back to scan it for my blog, but the scanner wouldn't work, so I abandoned it. Tonight, scanner somehow magically came alive, and I found this, still inside: priceless:

Monday, March 27, 2006

I had to do this too....

You Are 16% Evil

You are good. So good, that you make evil people squirm.
Just remember, you may need to turn to the dark side to get what you want!

I had to do it......

Your Personality Profile

You are dependable, popular, and observant.
Deep and thoughtful, you are prone to moodiness.
In fact, your emotions tend to influence everything you do.

You are unique, creative, and expressive.
You don't mind waving your freak flag every once and a while.
And lucky for you, most people find your weird ways charming!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

And the end of the AA story is.....

..just to finish off...I texted the lvoely Liz from the back of the truck, 'hello I have just been rescued by the AA after an hour and a half in the cold and rain' kind of text, cos I know it is my duty to amuse and entertain. My mobile phone rang immediately, and when I answered, all I could hear was hysterical laughter. Cheers for your concern, darling.

I rang the hotel and explained our late arrival (eta past 10pm) and asked about food, given that my last taste (apart from half a toffee crisp - see blog)was a couple of sandwiches at 12 noon before the committee meeting. They said (predictably) that they stopped serving at 9pm, but they would save some food for us. When I staggered into the bar at almost 10.30pm, and ordered a coffee, they brought out some beef and cheese and pickle sandwiches. Great. Just what I always wanted.

I got M a pint of beer when he came in after dealing with 'Still no rush' AA man in the car park, and we sat on a comfy sofa, and they re-lit the electric log fire, bless them, and we ate our sandwiches and looked at each other. 'We could have been killed.' said M. Exactly. Praise be that we had not been snuffed out in the middle of a motorway, in the dark, in a car that wouldn't go, surrounded by large and fast lorries. Instead we made it to the hard shoulder, and had simply been mildly inconvenienced. M looked at me. 'Sorry' he said. 'Sorry?' I replied. 'Nothing to say sorry for, I have had a brilliant evening - you shared your toffee crisp.'

Post script: It was my birthday on the Friday, and M and V dropped off two presents. One was a matchbox model of the exact AA tow truck, and the other was..a toffee crisp. Bless.

I couldn't resist it.....

I did it very quickly, just for fun. And the result has made me laugh so much....

You Are Miss Piggy

A total princess and diva, you're totally in charge - even if people don't know it.
You want to be loved, adored, and worshiped. And you won't settle for anything less.
You're going to be a total star, and you won't let any of the "little people" get in your way.
Just remember, piggy, never eat more than you can lift!

Not the RAC story....

... But the AA story! Are you sitting comfortably..then I'll begin. I was going on a two day training course 'up north' with the Chair of my charity, M, who also happens to be a personal friend. the course was called 'Leading Your Team' and with 6 other similar couples from other schemes, we were going to spend two days learning and talking about how to work together more effectively. M and I decided to travel up the night before, and even get there early enough to enjoy a relaxing meal in the hotel, and spend time talking over issues - time we rarely have together. I offered to drive, as I have the newer car, but M said no, he really didn't like being driven, so we went in his car.

Which was fine until it broke down whilst doing 70 in the middle lane, funny noise, loss of power, and thankfully a lorry driver let us across to the hard shoulder, or we would have come to a stop in the middle lane, in the dark and rain on a very busy motorway. Not funny....

So M gets out and looks under the bonnet. He gets back in. 'Not sure why I did that, I know nothing about engines.' No, but it seemed the right thing to do. M calls the AA while I think, there goes our peaceful evening and nice dinner..... M has to get out and read a number off a post, as the AA want to know (quite reasonably) where we are. We don't know, it's dark and rainy and we were talking, but we think we passed Stafford.... when M gets back in he tells me the AA will be an hour. Great. He also tells they have advised us not to sit in the car, but wait outside. I laugh, I think he is joking. No, he's not. So I put on my coat and we both get out and I teeter onto the muddy, wet, grassy bank in my best suede boots, and try and make light of the situation, to make M feel better about it all.

I start to regret refusing an earlier toilet stop, standing in the cold and rain, especially when M disappears out of sight to have a pee. I am not crouching in the bushes in the rain for anyone. I'll wait.....

The police stop and talk to us, check on us, and drive away.....I stop being the entertainer eventually, and pull my hood down over my face, tuck my cold hands under my arms and stand with my back to the rain, head down, like those Emperor penguins at the south pole. Or is it north pole?

I stand like that for a while, doing a kind of hibernation thing while the rain pours down, the traffic roars past, and I get colder. Suddenly I hear M's voice in my ear. 'Would you like some of this?' I turn round and look down at what he has in his hand. I reach out to take it, my eyes widening in anticipation. A toffee crisp. He is giving me half of his toffee crisp. As my lips close round the sweet chocolate and crispy inside, I feel so happy, it was worth breaking down for.

The AA man arrives after an hour and twenty minutes. What a nice man. To cut a long story medium, he takes two seconds to decide we can't be mended, and ask where we want to be towed to. To my relief, M decided to head on to our destination, an hour away, rather than two and a half hours back to St Albans.

Another half hour watching 'No rush then' AA man fix M's car to the back of the tow truck, and he eventually opens the rear cab door and invites me in. By now I can't feel my hands or feet. I climb up two steps and pull myself into the back seat of the truck, about four foot off the ground.

AA man says he is going to stop at the next service station to put the back board and lights on. Good, I say, as I am so desperate for the loo now. He stops in the car park and I ask if I have time to go to the loo. He says, yes, and I thought you might want to get a drink. Oh, yes, I say, a hot coffee, would you like one? Oh, go on, love, you've twisted my arm. In my enthusiasm to reach the warmth and comfort of the cafe, I open the door and step out, forgetting I am four feet off the ground. I plummet like a brick, in a Mrs Doyle kind of style of exiting an AA truck, and am quickly on the ground. M and the AA man turn round slowly from the front of the cab and chorus, 'Are you ok?' Yes, I say, picking myself up...bu**er, I knew I was desperate for a pee.....oops.....

When I get back with the coffees and clamber back in, as I shut the door, I see a notice printed along the door panel. And I quote..'Danger. Do not attempt to exit this cab without the assistance of the driver.' Now they tell me.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Is it time now???

Sorry, is it time for a little something? I have taken the hint..well 12 hints actually, thank you for your comments and for missing me! Trouble is after not blogging for a while and so much going on, I didn't know where to begin, I have been so up and down emotionally, and my blogging comes so much from the heart that I am tempted to pour it all out here, and grateful I haven't!!!! (remember, Sally, this is not a private diary........)

To be fair, the beginning of my not blogging was because suddenly I had a life, and I was actually too busy to blog!!!

The day after my last blog I went to the theatre where I work as a 'casual' technician to say goodbye to Simon, the Tech Manager, who has now gone to Australia for a new life outside Potters Bar. He used to manage a tribute band, The Beautiful Housemartins, or Beautiful Southmartins, you get the picture, and they came and played a final gig for his leaving party. They were very good, I listened, sang, had a dance with Simon who was very drunk, and he said he would miss me 'in a different way from the rest of the tech crew'. Given the rest of the crew are all blokies ranging from 17 to about 30 (except Gary who is old like me) and very geekie techie....mmm yes I guess I am different, but what could he mean..he said we had worked well together - which we always did - but hadn't really got to know each other personally, but he knew there was more to me than meets the eye....yes, well, I told you he was drunk.

But Simon had been there for 6 years, I liked him and worked well with him, he had taught me a lot, and the rest of the guys are much newer, and as I work there so rarely, I don't feel part of the team fact I hardly spoke to them at the party, they were all standing in corners drinking beer and being geeky and techie. You know me, I love working in the theatre, but now I do it for fun and for camaraderie and being a part of a team, and I wanted to be with them all and have a dance and a laugh..instead I felt that Simon going was the end of an era..especially when he told me the new Tech Manager was only 26 (and a guy, obviously)..and thought maybe I should hang up my leatherman and call it a day..consequently when I said goodbye to Simon and slipped out of the party, it felt very sad and like the end of something big in my life, and so I cried all the way home.

You see how tough this is? A long blog and I am only up to Sunday, March 12th??? And try as I do, I can't help sharing all the thoughts and feelings that are so painful, I feel so emotionally raw, like I haven't got a skin, and even the smallest things hurt so much...I really don't want to be like this...but when I just try and get on with life and work, and keep the emotion inside, it starts to hurt physically, like now I have stomach pain... well, that's enough for now!

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Oh happy day.....

..oh happy come to blog world and find that lots of my blog friends have been blogging, and there is lots for me to read!!!! What did I do before blog world was in my life?? Oh, that fateful Angel's weekend when PAB introduced its mysteries to me.....I lvoe the fact that it keeps me in touch with so many people, and gives me a glimpse into their world...

This week has been mixed and busy. The husband has been unwell with man flu and a bad bad he had to stay in bed on Tuesday, and I promised to return at lunchtime and minister with soup and lemsip. Then I got a text from Dave Sh offering pizza, and I was off like a shot. Such a tart. So easy. Offer food and I'm anybody's. When I got back to the office at 2pm I rang home to explain work had delayed me (tut tut!) to find no answer. After ringing several times, and knowing I had left Clive in bed with the phone, puzzled, I rang his mobile. He answered. He had gone out. I reminded him I was about to come home specially to do his lunch. I know, he said, I've left you a note saying where I have I stopped feeling guilty about not driving home in the pouring rain to be a good wife.....

His back got worse and on Thursday I was curled up on the sofa having my post-work nap when the phone rang. It was Clive from the car. Can you help me get out, I'm stuck? So I went out to try and prize him out of his sporty Peugeot bucket seat. Perhaps it's time, now he is 60 to buy a car he can get in and out of.

He managed to go to work Friday because I dressed him and put on his socks and shoes. He has reluctantly at last made a doctor's appointment for Monday, but only because he 'has the time this week.' I explain he will have all the time in the world if he can't move..and they say women are illogical.....

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Back to earth....

..not with a bang, but a whimper. Yes, the weekend was good, real and sustaining. Work is busy, challenging, rewarding, frustrating, enjoyable, and lots of other things, but of course I am no longer allowed to talk about work on my blog. Which is a shame because I would love to continue sharing stuff with you, the highs and lows etc etc, but there it is......

But back to earth, because the other stuff, the relationship stuff, continues to be hard. I am in no-man's land really, waiting, practising patience - trusting God?? and giving space to someone else. Where will it end? Who knows. I am doing really, really well..but if I should fall...please be there to catch me.

J's relationship with H has ended. he has madde a most difficult and heartbreaking decision, and he feels terrible...dreadful, but ultimately he feels he has made the right decision. How H must be feeling, having made the move over here from the States, you can imagine. J feels so bad that he doesn't deserve ever to find happiness with anyone. He is my bo6y, I admire him for making a tough decision and trying toi behave honestly and honourably...having struggled with this for a long time. They both need prayers too.

By the way, some of his designs are now 'out there' in the press and in the H*bit*t stores. Look out for his name, JP, and of course, buy his furniture, they may well be collectors items in the future....

Monday, March 06, 2006

Fun with tongues......

...Caroline forgot to mention that. She bought space dust. So there was that wonderful moment when she, Liz and I were sitting together, all with our tongues out, feeling the space dust fizz and pop and crack and explode on our tongues...sorry, there is no photo of this bizarre moment..... you had to be there....

It was the best weekend I have had for a long time. Sitting down to chat and catch up, starting at 6pm Friday night, and finishing at almost 5am Saturday morning..that's almost 12 hours non stop talking, and it was effortless, simply effortless.

We ate a lot, lovely food, talked a lot and slept a bit. The sky was vivid blue, the sun shone, the hotel staff were more wonderful than any I have known (the difference between Gloucester and Cheltenham?) The Cotswold countryside was beautiful and stunning.

Did I mention that we laughed? Can't remember what about (and if i can remember, I'm not telling). Sorry to the blokey who rang to complain about the sexist nature of the weekend. It was just about spending time with people you want to spend time with, and don't often get the chance. Did I manage to shock Liz? If not shock, worry a little anyway... and she didn't make me cry once.

I drove home feeling peaceful. I slept well. I had a good day today. I talked about the weekend in bereavement counselling and smiled and didn't cry. You know, good friends are so good for one's mental health...even if someone did wake up on Sunday morning shouting, 'It's Christmas! Happy Christmas.....'

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Oh nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo............

How could I be so stupid? I broke all my own rules. I am Not Thinking Clearly. I am a Bear of Very Little Brain. I have a love hate relationship with my hair (ok, all those who don't want to read shallow blogs about hair or shoes etc turn away now), I think most women do. I don't like it short. I like it long. I always used to have it long. These days, being of a certain age, I have it shorter, but I still like the feeling of having hair to flop over my face. (Why? Sorry, this is not a therapy session.)

It had got long, a bit thick, out of shape and was dominating my face. Well, all of me. An out of control bob which had gone a bit bushy. Some days I liked it. I made an appointment two weeks ago for a cut, but had such a bad day, the Saturday I kind of collapsed, I had to ring and cancel. I was in no fit state.

So I have left it. I have not been at my best this week, still fighting depression, and made a decision this was not the time to deal with my hair. But I had this big dinner last night - an Investors in People Award dinner where I was going to be presented with our award for winning IIP status last year. Smart event. Networking with Important People. Talking to people. Going up to get one's award in front of everyone. Now most of you know that would not phase me one bit. I thrive on such things. But when you are so fat you can't get into any of your smart clothes, you are feeling so low that you don't want to speak to anyone on the planet....(well, not quite true...aye there's the rub) and in the morning your hair looks a mess.....

So yes, I broke my rules. a. Had my hair cut three hours before going out to an Event. My rule is three days minimum to get used to a new cut. b. Was so desperate went accepted an appointment from someone I didn't know. A stylist. Not even a senior stylist. I did ask, does she cut well. And they said yes, so that was ok. Dur.....

So in I went. Don't take anything or not much off the front, please trim the back into shape and layer it slightly. Yes, she said. As she stared cutting, I said, how much are you taking off the back? She showed an inch or so between finger and thumb. OK I said. I stared into the mirror as she was cutting and sad, empty eyes stared back. A young girl with very, very, long thick dark hair was having a trim next to me, long bouncy layers which curled around her face and shoulders and down her back. Young. Pretty. Long hair. I closed my eyes.

When I opened them I flinched. Where had my hair gone? The sides. Layered and shorn. The back, layered and short. 'I have no hair left,' I said, clutching at the sides. 'How short do you like your fringe?' she said, approaching with the scissors. 'I like it left very long' I said, moving away. They all looked at me, these trendy young hairdressers, smiling, as I paid, stony faced willing myself not to cry in front of them.

I go home and look in the mirror. The tears started..I was going for the full upset. But have a Dinner to go to in one hour. You can go looking as ok as possible, with horrible hair wearing - what?? or you can go with horrible hair and red puffy eyes..which is it to be?

So I busied, ironing things, trying on things, (how smart will other people be? Will everyone be in suits? I'm too fat for my suits..) I found an outfit I was happy with. I did good makeup. I found a chunky trendy necklace. I looked in the mirror and'll be ok.

Funnily enough I had a good evening - I felt lighter, different. Not weighed down by hair. Mark said it looked nice. (My Chair.)

I drove home full of nice dinner, I even had my photograph taken for publicity - boy I am going to hate that appearing - but I did it, accepted my award - a small silver clock for my desk - and drove home.

I put my head round Clive's door, he was reading in bed. He never, ever notices my hair cuts or colour. Oh, he said, you've had your hair cut short. I don't like the whispy bits at the front. Then, after a pause, Actually I like it. It's different. Your face looks better.

So that's ok then. I have just got up and washed and blow dried it read to go to work. What does it look like? Dreadful! I am going to buy colour today and make it different again..why not?

I know, there are wars on, people starving, people dying. It's only hair. It will grow. I know. Sorry to blog on about it. But it's a tiny, weeny bit important to me..........