R & R

I’m back again after a slight (cough) blogging break.

There never seems enough hours in the day/week/life to do all the things I set myself to do (which is a whole different blog post waiting to be written) and one of the things that I’ve let slip is getting lost in a good book. I read all the time, news, blog posts, (I love Pocket for saving things to read later, Flipboard and Freshly Pressed are great sources for interesting reads) but I never seem to find the time anymore to finish a book. I’ve got a pile gathering dust on the bedside table so it’s not for a lack of wanting to read, just making the time to. I intend to do something about that, starting today.

Whilst on the subject of reading this article in the Guardian caught my eye. There are lots of lists of ‘books you must read’ and I’m not going to set myself the goal of reading them all because that will never happen (I’ve tried Ulysses and I just can’t – I admit defeat). There are a few on the list that I’ve read when I was younger but would like to revisit and there are a few that I’ve got copies of but have never read and I need to put that right.

In case you’re in need of some literary inspiration here’s the article.

After two years of careful consideration, Robert McCrum has reached a verdict on his selection of the 100 greatest novels written in English. Take a look at his list (source – The Guardian.com)

Here Comes The Rain.

The UK Music Festival season has begun. Kicking off this weekend with the first of the major venues – The Isle Of Wight Festival, and with it comes the rain. There was a time when I’d have braved anything the elements could come up with to spend a weekend in a field listening to music but, even if it pains me to say it, I can’t do it anymore.

I’ve gone for days without decent food or sleep, lived on a diet of alcohol and junk, levitated above festival loos and loved every minute of it but there comes a time in life when proper food, a comfy bed and hot and cold running water become necessities and much as I love the idea of a festival the reality is not for me anymore. There’s still a part of me that would love to do Glastonbury one day but unless there’s a hotel and a guest pass  it’s not going to happen.

So to get into the spirit of the season from the comfort of home I’m playing an album from all the bands that are at the Isle Of Wight today that I have in my itunes, enjoying a glass or two of wine and hosting my own, civilised, warm, dry version of the day.

Cheers.

The Line Up

Sundays Are For #3

A lazy start. Sunday brunch of Eggs Benedict served on a Ciabatta with Smoked Salmon, Spinach, Mushrooms and Cherry Tomatoes and a cup of delicious freshly ground Coffee. Wye Oak on itunes, a bit of homework, a few chores and  Scott Pilgrim to watch later.

Happy Halloween

How to carve a pumpkin.

  1. Get a Pumpkin, or two, never hurts to have a back up.
  2. Assemble the necessary tools; pointless carving kit from supermarket, large (very sharp) knife, Stanley knife, boyfriends Leatherman (make sure to hand it back sans bits of Pumpkin – men get touchy about things like that).
  3. Choose a template appropriate to your skill level, I chose easy.
  4. Open Wine – this is important, it helps creativity and the clocks just went back so you can get away with a glass an hour earlier than usual.
  5. Get messy! Cut a hole in the top big enough to (just) get your hand in but not quite big enough to let any extra light out (or actually be able to move your hand within the Pumpkin) then scoop out the insides. The tool from the supermarket will never be enough. I recommend a combination of Pizza Cutter and a teaspoon – worked for me! Give the insides to boyfriend to whip up a yummy pumpkin Risotto with later.
  6. Tape the template to the pumpkin.
  7. Using the only useful piece of kit from the supermarket pack poke the design out with the proddy thing. Drink more wine. This is a tedious and time-consuming part of the process and can only be made bearable with added wine.
  8. When you have your design marked out on the pumpkin spend ages cutting around the lines with the saw bit from boyfriends Leatherman.
  9. Remove the bits of Pumpkin from the design, the table, the carpet, your clothes, your hair… Light up, take photograph, pour more wine.

Happy Halloween.

Sundays Are For #2

Remembering.

Today, all over Britain, people remembered The Battle Of Britain. Three and a half months of aerial combat in the summer of 1940 that prevented a Nazi invasion.

Around 544 personnel from Fighter Command died in the battle, which was fought over south-east England as the German Luftwaffe attempted to destroy Britain’s fighter defences.

Odiham is home to RAF Odiham, the largest Chinook Squadron in the UK, No 7 Squadron, No 18 Squadron, No 27 Squadron, and the Operational Conversion Flight and was a target of German bombing in October 1940 with the loss of several lives.

The 1940’s Chronicle suggests that we ‘take action’ to remember those dark days, and write a blog as if we were living through it. I wanted to write something and I’ve started several posts  but nothing I’ve come up with seems fit to publish. I can’t imagine what it must have been like and life today would have been very different if it hadn’t been for ‘the few‘ who fought so hard.

So today we listened to a swing band blasting out the hits of Glenn Miller, a Vera Lynn tribute and the distant sounds of a Spitfire and a Hurricane on a brief fly past. I ate Spam, sandwiches, drank a little Spitfire Ale and took photographs as Odiham saluted the people who fought, and died, in The Battle Of Britain.

And as a final thought I’d like to refer to the diary of Aircraft Woman 1st Class – Jane Sheridan. From the 1940’s Chronicles.

I got a call on the telephone yesterday while I was on duty to say that George had been shot down but that he was alive and in no danger. However, he had been injured. I wanted to go and see him. Violet was able to take over my shift and our Commanding Officer let me head off to Orpington General Hospital where George had been taken.

I didn’t know what to expect. It was a cloudy day and it was raining. I hadn’t eaten any breakfast due to the sickness that I’m getting every morning now. My stomach was fluttering and I just stared at the greyness around me and heard my heartbeat thumping in my ears until it made me feel as though I would explode. When I arrived at the hospital, I stood on the side of the road outside and I was sick against a wall. A nice old lady came over and asked me if I was alright and I said I was and I cleaned myself up standing in the rain and walked in to the hospital. When I arrived on the ward, I saw his face immediately; it was unblemished and I felt relieved. A nurse walked towards me and started to say something but I rushed straight over to him. His eyes flickered when he saw me, in that same way that they’d flickered the first time we met, but I realised that something was amiss.

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