Friday, June 30, 2006


I have got through a day and a half of moving so far without actually killing HF. Who has developed an annoying habit of reordering dvds and videos so they are in exactly the same order they were stored in at our old flat. *Interesting, the enter key on this keyboard doesn't seem to work. How irritating.* I'm too exhausted to explain everything. Suffice to say that everything has been moved from one place to the other, including the cat (now that was a lot of fun, trying to persuade her to get into the cat basket). Several pieces of furniture have been taken apart and then put back together again. My lovely new mattress has been carried on my and HFs head through the streets of Newmarket to find a new home. I have just finished eating a rather large and unhealthy fried breakfast before I start cleaning the old flat. Which I suspect is going to be a rather time-consuming process. And I have enough boxes strewn around the new place to build a large fort complete with tower and conservatory extensions.*no, enter key still not working. Now I know why no-one was using this machine* In other news, I'm going to be offline for at least a week - against my better judgement, we are signing up with NTL to get cable and telephone and lord only knows how this is going to affect internet provision. I fucking hate NTL, but BT were going to charge us a bleeding fortune to get a phone line put in, so what you gonna do? I have bruises in the most unlikely parts of my body and a sunburnt nose. And I have to organise a gymnastics display to take place tomorrow afternoon outside in what is expected to be the hottest day of the year. Ha bloody ha. More on that story later.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Chaos reigning supreme at home at the moment. As you may have noticed, I am about to move house. We in fact pick up the keys on Wednesday. So in a burst of enthusiasm, I started filling boxes. Lots of boxes. Sending HF to have a quick count up, so far I have filled 20 boxes and 8 bags/suitcases of clothes.

Every time I filled a box or emptied a shelf I felt a fleeting feeling of triumph. Followed almost immediately by a sharp stab of panic at how much there still is to do. There are piles of boxes littered throughout the room. As I was filling them, HF kept warning me to make sure I didn't overfill them. Umm, some of them are really bloody heavy. I also don't understand quite how I've acquired so many videos/dvds and most particularly cds. I keep wildly trying to throw things away but can't bring myself to do it.

One thing I did manage to throw away is our old mattress. We took it down to the dump this afternoon (where a man laughed at me as I wandered around with a broken vacuum cleaner looking confused) . Believe it or not, the mattress I had been sleeping on for several years until we bought a new one about two weeks ago, actually folded neatly in half to fit into the back of my Fiesta. Mattresses aren't supposed to fold in half. I can't believe how long I was "sleeping" on that thing, I actually had bruises from semi-protruding springs.

Anyway, that's gone now, and most of my ornaments and books and stuff are now packed. None of my kitchen stuff is even slightly packed yet. I wonder how many things I am going to nervously smash before it all gets packed away. Especially considering my propensity for squeezing as much as possible into very small spaces.

Oh well, maybe I'll start now. Nah, I'll just watch the children's party at the palace instead, although I'm not loving the Dick Van Dyke impression so far.

More on that story later.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The face of an angel

But the bottom of a devil.

I am, of course, referring to my cat Missy. She's a bit of a looker, all tabby fur and little white socks. However, she has been somewhat ill-behaved of late.

I was sitting in the toilet yesterday, innocently having a little wee, when along came a familiar little face. Missy likes to join me in the bathroom for reasons best known to herself so I prepared to give her a little stroke. But she wasn't behaving in quite the normal way. She was kind of poised for some sort of action.

The sort of action she was poised for became clear all too soon.

A few seconds later, the bloody cat started blithely pissing away on the bathmat. Right in front of me! I couldn't believe it and whipped out the bathmat - which I had just put through the washing machine (it was smelling a bit funny - now I know why) and she finished off her business against the side of the bath.

I couldn't believe it. We provide her with a lovely litter tray, regularly emptied, it may even be the slightly fragrant stuff. Hell, the tray itself is lilac and everyone knows that lilac is lovely.

*ooh, England just scored. Yay.*

So I had stern words with the little mog and pointed and said no firmly a number of times and showed her her rightful toilet area. And, obviously, washed the bathmat again and shut the bathroom door so as not to allow her in the area - to avoid temptation.

But what do I find today? A nice little pile of (fortunately solid, neat and not too smelly) poo by the back door, next to a little puddle on the carpet. She'd only bloody done it again! I apologise for the language, but really, the cat is six years old and supposedly fully house-trained. There is no excuse for such behaviour.

We think we've figured out the reason though. After toying with the idea that maybe it's because of some abuse in her childhood, issues of self-esteem or a cry for attention, we realised that at pretty much the same time she started misbehaving, we changed her litter to a different type. I guess she doesn't fancy the look of the new stuff, that lovely bathmat/carpet is more to her taste.

Stupid wench.

Anyhow, we move house at the end of next week (literally just around the corner) and the new place has no carpets except for the stairs - and I can't see her squatting to do her business on the stairs. All we have to do now is make sure she behaves until then. With the added stress of moving.

I have decided we can move house without hiring a van. So we're going to attempt to move, variously, a fridge, a bed, a futon, an ikea room divider, a table etc taking most of the big stuff between the two of us on foot. HF isn't convinced, but I'm hardcore. It had better not rain though, cos that would really fuck it up.

More on that story later.

Friday, June 16, 2006


Look, it worked and everything! This pic doesn't actually show the colour all that well. But it took me about eight attempts to upload - what is with blogger?

Just watching the Big Brother eviction - Grace is possibly the biggest bitch ever. Apart from this girl Dannielle who stole my boyfriend when I was 15. Slag.

Got to go now, want to hear about the meanest of mean girls try and explain her despicable actions.

More on that story later.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

An admission - and a picture

Okay, here's the thing. I'm going to miss all three England group matches (the world cup in football, for those of you who have been living under a log or in the USA).

This wasn't a deliberate thing. But somehow, I managed to book a hair appointment during the first match, a spinning class during the second (tomorrow) and my Yoga course will clash with the final group match.

I didn't do any of that on purpose. I actually quite like watching football when England is playing with an illicit beer in my hand (illicit only because it's not the time of day or week I usually drink) and this year I have a vested interest as I picked England in the office sweepstake and stand to win £52 if they win (yes, I know it won't happen but still). And, err, Iran. Who have been going great guns so far.

But at the end of the day, *winces in readiness for violence of anticipated response* it is only a game. I have listened to the arguments about cute men in little shorts but if you look closely at the average televised footie match, the players are bloody miles away most of the time and they wear those really unappealing knee-high stockings - the only visible flesh is the knee and the hand. Plus, it being the World Cup, Jose Merino, aka the hottest man in football, won't be required to make an appearance. Shame.

I'm not a particularly girlie girl and I can even understand/explain the offside rule, discuss the merits of various players and teams (come on, I read the papers and watch the telly, you would have to be pretty thick to miss it altogether). I can appreciate an impressive tackle (wahey), a blistering run from the likes of Owen (used to think he was quite fit but I'm bored with him now and a cracking goal well set up. I even know some of the words. But really, in between the exciting bits, it's just lots of faraway men running around on a big field, occasionally pulling at each others shirts in a homo-erotic fashion. Nuts magazine (despite all the tits, it's really quite good) does lots of entertaining football close-ups of footballers all being rather *emotional*, kissing each other and falling on top of each other in what can only be described as a rather sweaty public frottage. So if it's a toss-up between watching Iran play Angola or sitting in my room reading a book/listening to music, I'm afraid if there's no booze involved, the room thing wins every time.

I wouldn't mind seeing the match if the USA end up playing Iran though. Teeheehee.

Anyway, I promised a picture. This is my hair. As well as being dyed (by my own fair hand) it has been cut by a slightly dim but very pleasant stylist named Sharon.

Did we do a good job?

Okay, umm, picture not working, will try to get it up later.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Feeling hot

Sadly, on this occasion, the hot which I am feeling relates directly to my body temperature and not to my general foxiness.

Have just come back (well, last night) from a lovely weekend with my parents and two of my friends from home where I have been mostly so dehydrated I felt slightly groggy and hungover, or actually being hungover.
For a while I thought I was developing exciting new symptoms of something like hay fever (all the cool people get it), before realising I actually just had a cold. Hence the dehydration, constant sneezing and nose-running and frequent headaches.

Yes, I know I said it was a lovely weekend so I should probably explain why. My two best friends came over and my parents cooked a ridiculously huge barbecue (why is it that people eat about eight times as much at a barbecue as they would at any other time? Answers on a postcard...) I got my hair cut and it looked nice and the woman didn't even blow dry it so it looked like a mushroom (big and curled in on top, small and curled out at the bottom) and to top it all off there was lots of Pimms and lemonade.

Mmm, Pimms.

There was drinking and dancing and really only a small amount of falling over and we even met one of the girls we went to college with and have a nice chat. My sister turned up about 40 minutes after I expected her and she danced too. Not with me, though. We may both be in our twenties by now but neither of us is quite ready to surrender/share the limelight with each other. I am pleased to report that I wasn't sufficiently competitive that I did some ill-advised gymnastic manoeuvres in the bar (it would have been a wrong move as I would definitely have flashed my knickers and probably kicked several people in the head).

I also caused some consternation with my mother by telling her that me and HF had decided on a boys name that we both liked (I'm not telling you, you'll steal it). I'm not pregnant nor planning to be, I just like talking about names and such-like, but it did worry her for a moment, she's already got one grand-daughter and she's not quite ready for another.

I did inadvertantly cause a bit of a family rucus because my sister was supposed to be dying my hair. There was some work emergency (there always is) and she didn't show up or phone up and I had to leave and this rather infuriated my father - he has a very mercurial temper - who later apparently berated my sister for her "behaviour". So then I got an upset, possibly drunken phone call from her when I got home and had to fend that off. Oh well. So I'm going to have to dye it myself tonight. I hope I don't dye the floor instead, that could be rather difficult to deal with.

Other good things about this weekend - my sister immediately told me I had lost a lot of weight without prompting and my mum said I looked even slimmer than last time she saw me. And their bathroom scales say I've lost about another five/six pounds so ha!

I'm still fatter than my sister though and always will be.

More on that story later.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


Moving onto cheerier topics, I am going to answer any number of questions about me that nobody has asked. That's the point of blogs, right?

Okay, here goes.

If I could learn one new skill, I would like to be able to breakdance and spin on my head. I go green with envy every time I see someone do it.

If I could meet one person, alive or dead, I would like to meet Jesus Christ. Come on, even you atheists surely must have a few questions for him.

If I could change one part of my body, I w0uld change my elbows. They're surprisingly dry and shrivelled and look like small brains when my arms are straight.

If I could live anywhere, I would probably live somewhere in the UK, maybe in Cornwall by the coast - provided I had my own private jet so I could fly off somewhere exotic when it started raining. Again.

If I could be any animal, I would be a cat - lots of leaping, effortless elegance and the opportunity to lie around in the sun most of the time.

If I was on Who Wants to be a Millionnaire, my phone a friends would be: my Dad, my best friend E, HF, my colleague TM and the fifth place is open.

If I had to give up chocolate or cheese, I would give up chocolate.

I would rather be deaf than blind.

If I was told I could either have two perfect children and a loving husband or the career of my dreams, I don't know which I would choose.

If I was rich, I would rather hire a personal trainer and nutritionist to get into shape than have plastic surgery.

If I had crashed on a desert island with the cast of Lost I would have shagged Sawyer by now.

If I could be stunningly beautiful or mind-bogglingly intelligent, I would be beautiful - because you can study to improve your mind but plastic surgery always makes you look crap.

If I woke up one morning and found out I couldn't do backflips or the splits any more I would cry.

If someone offered me £1million if I let them shoot my cat, I would turn it down.

I would rather be happy than rich.

If I was offered enough money, I would definitely take part in medical research.

If I got run over by a car on my way home from work tonight, my first thought would be regret for not having written my book.

If I could be anyone, I would be me.

That's enough for now, I think. If anyone would like me to elaborate on the above, feel free to ask and I might. Maybe.

I expect this is full of spellings and literals, I've barely slept the last few nights.

More on that story later.

Sunday, June 04, 2006


I'm not really going to write about chickens, I just asked HF what I should write about and this was his best suggestion. I will offer this piece of information though - chickens are the most common birds in the world. Fact.

So, instead, I'm going to tell you about my first night at university. Which wasn't a lot of fun, for various reasons. I'm not sure I've ever told anyone this story, well not properly anyway.

I was only just 18 when I went to university at Bournemouth. I was leaving behind a serious boyfriend and all my friends but was obviously quite excited about the experience, having never lived away from home before. Anyway, at Bournemouth University, rather unusually they put most of the first year students not in halls of residence but in hotels - the town being very full of them and there being little call for them outside of the summer.

I was allocated a room in a hotel near the beach with 18 other people, 17 first years and one second year who had stayed in the hotel the previous year. I was pretty nervous meeting the other people, who arrived in dribs and drabs during the day. We all decided to go to the student union nightclub, The Old Firestation (more commonly known as the direstation) that first night. It was kind of a weird experience - not too many people had arrived yet so the club was pretty quiet and none of us really knew each other. As I recall, two or three people split off from the rest of the group to meet people they knew from their courses, the rest of us stayed in a small group, popped our coats in a corner together and got some drinks. We weren't there for very long before I had to go to the loo.

When I came back, everybody had gone. I wasn't unduly worried to begin with, assuming they were in a different part of the club. I had a wander around, but couldn't find them. I looked in the corner where our coats were - except they weren't. My possessions had been abandoned, they had all taken their coats and left mine behind.

I am not the kind of person who can hang around drinking on their own, nor am I the sort of girl who just goes up to strangers in nightclubs and talks to them.

So I left the club, pretty upset and angry and more than a little tipsy. I didn't have a lot of money, so decided to walk the 20-25 minute walk back to the hotel rather than buying a taxi. It was tipping it down with rain. I was wearing a going out jacket with no hood and some sort of skimpy outfit. I didn't have an umbrella.

I should point out that this was probably the safest time for a lone woman to be walking alone, as it was during the Labour party conference and there were policemen at every junction leading to the swanky hotels on the beachfront where they were presumably all staying. I got an awful lot of cheery, sympathetic comments from all the bobbies (well, it can't have been a particularly fun job for them either, although they did all have brollies) including one who smiled and said: "You look really wet." Not terribly useful, but at least I was reasonably sure I wasn't going to get jumped by anyone.

During the walk, I got more and more wet and as a result more and more angry. I am fairly mild-mannered. I don't get angry about too many things, I just tend to purse my lips and brush whatever's irritating me aside. But sometimes, I get REALLY mad. I used to say to my parents that I had a very long fuse, but a massive bomb. So by the time I got back to the hotel, I was hopping mad. It wouldn't have been a problem if everyone had gone to bed - I would have slept on it and realised it wasn't that bad. But unfortunately, two of them were up. They greeted me in a perfectly friendly way and were probably quite taken aback when I turned the air blue, trying and failing to explain how I felt abandoned and upset. Instead I just swore at them, I may have used the expression "f***ing w**kers" on several occasions and just went off in a long, slightly drunken (and rather wet) diatribe. They tried to explain that they thought I had pulled and was off with some bloke. Which shows how little they knew me.

I can't even remember how I left it, I think I just stormed up to my bedroom. And nothing was said about it again. But I never really made friends with most of the people in that house and I think my behaviour probably had something to do with it. Nobody likes a screaming harpy and I think that's pretty much how I came across.

And while the moral of the story is that shouting drunk insults is unlikely to get you anywhere, I will never forget how I felt in that nightclub when I realised I was all alone and I had been left behind. It wasn't nice.

I realise this isn't a very cheery post. Maybe tomorrow I'll tell you about how I accidentally almost entered myself in a wet t-shirt competition for shit but funny men's magazine Nuts. I even got a rather tight vest for my troubles.

More on that story later.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

No place like home

Especially when you've just been told you have two months to leave.

Even more so when you only moved in last October and have finally got comfortable in your surroundings and are thinking of the place as your home.

Last week when I came home for lunch I noticed a for sale sign outside my house for Flat 2 (I live in Flat 1). Knowing that the same person owns all three flats in the building, I was immediately suspicious so I called my estate agent (words cannot describe how much I dislike this man) and he confirmed the landlord was "thinking about selling" but assured me I would be the first to know.

Yesterday, there was an envelope in my letterbox with a Newmarket address and I knew immediately what it was. So, I have until July 31 to find a new home.

As regular readers of my blog will be aware, my wee flat hasn't been a perfect with it's damp (sorry, "ventilation") problems and errant builders disturbing me, but I've really liked it.

Plus I really hate the whole process of moving, it costs money, it's hard work and you have to look loads of different places - knowing I'm probably not actually going to stay there for very long. I have serious doubts I'm going to be able to find somewhere that fits quite as well, and having now had the joys of a power shower (albeit one where the head sometimes falls off and sprays the wall), double glazing and the like, I don't want to go somewhere miserable and drafty. Oh, and Missy (my little moggie) isn't going to particularly enjoy the process.

So I have to go and talk to a bunch of scumsucking bloodthirsty estate agents. What larks, what fun. We briefly considered looking at buying, but really, I can't see myself staying here for that long (it's been three years and I'm getting pretty restless). And somewhere we would have to come up with several thousand pounds for fees/surveys/stamp duties/lining the estate agents pockets which we really don't have.

Sometimes I doubt my career choices - I owe thousands of pounds in student loans but as a journalist earn less than I could as someone's secretary or a bloody manager at Tesco. And HF, as an archaeologist, earns even less (which is a constant source of misery to him). Maybe I should just sell my soul to the devil (ie join the ranks of press officers like my colleague is doing). Either that, or write that bestseller which I fully intend to do. A really reliable source of income.

Oh well, anyone got any good packing tips? Any good ideas on where I can leave something hidden which will REALLY SMELL but not until I'm long?

Bloody estate agents.

More on that story later.