Monthly Archives: July 2008

New Forest

Today I am off to the new forest with some friends from back home.

We are camping. Never had I realised, before, the sheer amount of thinking involved in organising a camping trip, because usually I’ve camped with my family, and my dad’s the one who orchestrates the packing of the car and all the techy checky things one should do to prepare. I’m providing one of the tents, the stove, and furniture, from air mattresses to a table and chairs. Plates, lanterns, cutlery, saucepans, and more. I haven’t done any of those things I totally meant to do, such as checking and sealing the seams and putting up the tent to make sure it hasn’t been eaten by some crazy synthetic-fabric-loving bug. Yes, I worry about these things… It’s not much that I have to do as such, it’s just that I have to remember so much more than I usually would.

And I am bound to have forgotten something ridiculously obvious e.g. my medicines, or my purse, or my toothbrush, or something.

However, the point is this: I won’t be here until the sixth. Have a nice week!

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Happenings

Today I went shopping, and shopped as I never have before. I bought several bits of pyjama (i.e. trousers, shorts, crops, and a PJ top), I had my colours done at the Clarins counter at John Lewis and came away with a new (and stupidly expensive) compact, I bought some nail varnish that will go better with my sandals, a new pair of shorts, a bra, and five pairs of pants. I bought an ice-cream smoothie.

You win some, you lose some – I acquired all these things and then was given the news that I am no longer to contact in any way one of my closest friends (and one-time lover) – since doing this will salvage his relationship with his girlfriend. For his sake, let’s hope so. And I’m not angry about this – of course I’m sad, but it’s one of those things, I get it, and that’s an end to the matter.

Though I’m not sure about the protocol when we both end up with the same group of people at the pub – does one of us leave, or is this just getting silly…?!

Meanwhile I am off on holiday tomorrow in the New Forest with several tents and assorted wonderful people, for walking, lazy evenings on the beach, fried eggs on the stove and a bit of soul-restoring. And, I gather, drinking-games. Expect my next post after I’ve got out of hospital post-liver transplant, I guess…

In other news, I was at a party in the middle of nowhere the other night and the stars were simply amazing. The party was pretty good too, until I went to bed with a headache – but I guess that’s what you get for spending the previous night on a trampoline.

Ha – by the sounds of it my life is actually just one long round of social engagements and the spending of money, which, of course, is entirely the case.

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The Winner Takes It All

This is the song I linked to in my previous post. It makes me cry. Which isn’t wholly unconnected from the following bit of gibberish.

How is it in one day you can go from fitting absolutely in one another’s company to hardly being able to speak to one another without an undertow of malice ripping through everything you ever said? Suddenly I know what anger is, and now I understand everyone who ever said I was lucky not to know this feeling.

I don’t do this super-emotional thing very often. Sorry. What makes it worse is that I may well not post again before I get back from holiday – I’m leaving on Tuesday and pretty busy until then! What a great last impression… If I don’t post, so long, and have a great few days/weeks!

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Mamma Mia!

Rated: 10/10. Quite honestly.

Last night I went to see some old friends to see Mamma Mia. It was, for what it was, excellent. That’s to say, it’s not a groundbreaking piece of cinema, it doesn’t make you think or anything. But it’s set in Greece, everything is beautiful, a bit shambolic and quirky, there are several men of various ages to lust after, songs to sing along to, and a weepy moment or two (listen to Meryl Streep singing ‘The Winner Takes It All’ – it’s simply brilliant – who’d’ve thought she had such a voice in her?). I’ll admit at that point I did actually cry, properly, but that’s more to do with me than with the film…! 

Anyway, over-all it’s a ridiculously happy, feelgood film. There are some hilarious scenes (‘Does Your Mother Know?’ and ‘Lay All Your Love On Me’ being particular favourites, one of which features dancing men in diving flippers…), the plot is a positively Shakespearean comedy of errors (i.e. subtle as a brick but funny for all that), and there are happy endings for all.

I defy you, all of you, not to enjoy it. It’s hard to get into at first because it’s so ridiculously…corny, I guess is the word. But then you get into it and you come out glowing. Go and see it. No matter who you are and what’s going on, it’ll cheer you up no end.

Then we came out of the cinema to witness the sun setting over the harbour – gorgeous. So I took lots of photos of my friends larking about in the lazy summer sunshine, and of the harbour and the Tower. Then when I made it back home, I wandered out of the station and sat down on the end of the local sailing club pontoon, watching the tide rip out of the river, and the reflections. All highly serene. All in all, a rather nice evening.

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The Common

In which it becomes clear that Jenny has no real sense of self-preservation.

Last night my sister had a party – a gathering, at least, of all her poetry friends, most of whom seem to wear waistcoats and hats and things. There was storytelling and fire poi and more girl-on-girl kissing than I have ever before witnessed; and lets not even talk about how drunk some of them were before they left. However I had a great time, learnt some guitar-related basics, taught a lot of poi and didn’t get drunk. So, all in all, a pretty great evening. Towards the end of the evening, more and more I wanted to go out and just walk – the stars were amazing, for the city at least (I can only imagine and envy what they must have been like back home) and the moon was bright, half full, in the clearest sky I’ve seen for weeks.

So when the chance came to walk one of the guests home I leapt at it, even though he had a bike and is quite grown up enough to cross the Common at 2am on his own, thank you very much. But there were some books he wanted to lend me, reason enough to walk two completely unnecessary miles – two miles of fascinating conversation and the meeting of minds. If I wasn’t who I am and if things weren’t how they are, I might seriously have started falling for him. But things are how they are, and I am who I am, and that’s not the point of this post.

I left his house and walked back towards the Common, the area of park just outside my house, with the cemetery, several lakes and ponds, woodland and sports fields, a wildlife garden and centre, and children’s playground, all interwoven with tarmac paths, sadly. Not very wild, but perfectly lovely for what it is. I came in through the bottom and found myself wandering into the cemetery, which is wild and Victorian, tumbly and brambly, filled with yews and long grass and stone angels and chapels that, out of the corner of your eye, loom like ruins. A light mist of falling dew hovers over the graves and the moon is casting shadows so crisp that individual blades of grass themselves have shadows. Silence breathes and I am on my own in the middle of it, deliciously slightly nervous and completely and perfectly alone. I walk through the cemetery and have to climb over the gate when I find it locked at the other end.

The Common, too, is lovely. I stick to the unlit paths because I can see quite well enough by moonlight and from here I can see the stars, though not clearly enough to try and work out where Draco is. Cassiopeia and the Plough and Polaris are clear enough and I see what is most definitely a Planet, though I can’t remember which planet it is, just over the horizon though I can’t now remember which bit of the horizon. Dead trees cast dramatic silhouettes over the moon and I hear an owl perched in the huge oak to one side of the Crossroads. The subway seems too bright after all this serenity so I stroll across the near-deserted Avenue, slightly scaring a German lorry-driver. Five minutes later, sadly, I am home, all the lights are off, and it soon turns out that a switch has tripped so before I can make my bed and get into it I have to wander down to the fusebox to sort it out. Anyway, a beautiful evening, despite the light pollution. I know if I tell any of my city friends about this they’ll come back to me with stories about rape and murder and knifings and gangs; but on a night like last night I couldn’t not see it for myself.

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On The Brink

Welcome to the new home of my old blog, Metaphors and Similes. I thought it was time for a full-scale change, time to grow up a bit, perhaps. So I got a WordPress blog, and here I am.

This new blog is called On The Brink because that is what I feel I am: not yet fully an adult, just about to leave for university, not entirely sure what is around the corner. My sister said, before I explained, that it sounded ‘really emo’. That’s not the point at all – it’s not some crazy about-to-leap-off-cliff type brink I’m referring to, just the feeling of having the world spread before me, ready for me to drink it in. Actually, I think it’s quite optimistic. So there. Hopefully she gets that now too!

Expect to see this blog change quite a bit over the coming months. I’d like to get a working knowledge of CSS and design this blog myself, as near as I can from scratch. For now, though, it’s nice to have left the confines of LiveSpaces, and find that finally I can hang my own pictures on the walls.

Anyway, since I’m supposed to be working and earning my living proof-reading, I shall leave you now. I hope that over the next few days this place will become more interesting and worth coming back to, as I make it more my own. And hopefully I’ll find something to say for myself before too long!

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