Category Archives: Happenings

Towersey (II)

For some reason, I have just ironed everything I own. There was a good reason to do some ironing as I’m going to put some stuff on eBay; and that done, I just couldn’t stop, so I ironed all the dresses I’m taking to Towersey and even some of the shirts.

That was yesterday.

I’ve just written a packing list. This is to put off the awful moment when I have to dive into our garage. Due to the building works, it contains – apparently – half the furniture we own. There’s  a very high possibility that I will never emerge, that I’ll get swallowed into some kind of furniture-based wormhole and go gallivanting with fawns and lions and ice queens. Or, let’s be honest, knocked out when a shelf falls on my head.

This packing list features spectacularly middle class who-takes-THAT-camping items such as ‘cafetiere’ and ‘PILLOW!!!’ as well as the mysterious FMGFN – fizzy-make-good-feel-nice, or Alka-Seltzer to anyone unfamiliar with Black Books.

It also includes some ‘well, duh’ items such as ‘TICKET!!!!’ and ‘toothpaste’ because those are the kind of stupid moronic things I always forget.

I am also taking my knitting, a sudoku book, and some novels, because you never know what might happen and you might find yourself stranded without entertainment within seconds and thank goodness you had that knitting there to do. I expect I won’t use any of those things but you have to be prepared, don’t you?

I am mainly fretting, though, because I have yet to buy a filter for my camera lens. I gather there’s a photographic shop in the nearby town so I will google this later and then promptly forget where it is.

And it’s going to rain constantly. Don’t try to tell me otherwise.


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Hypochondria BSc

This is the thing with my degree, see. You study, in massive detail, all the things that can possibly go wrong with the human body.

It’s not the pathogens that bother me, I’m not worried – as yet I’ve never caught anything too serious (apart from a bout of food poisoning this year related to, well, the state of our kitchen *grumble*). I’ve got a pretty tough immune system by and large, and anyway, there’s not much in terms of random illnesses you can contract in the UK. Nothing as bad as the Ebola virus, or E.Coli, or whatever.

I worry a bit about cancer – one in three of us will get it, after all, but equally the chances of an individual cell in your body turning cancerous are miniscule, and there’s nothing I can do about that.

There’s also nothing I can do about the bit that does bother me: genetics. Except, kind of, there is. Because I won’t know until it happens that I’ve got cancer, or diptheria, or tetanus. There is nothing I can do to prevent those things from happening except do my bit to prevent those things happening like take a reasonable amount of exercise, not smoke, and read the Daily Mail obsessively, of course. But it’s not me that I’m worried about in terms of genetics – it’s what am I going to pass on that I don’t know about yet? What currently silent heterozygote mistake do I carry – one gene fine, the other containing a terrible deletion or insertion or repeat, which, when I was put together, could be safely ignored because the other gene for whatever-it-is was fine, and won out? What if I just happen to fall in love with someone who also happens to have that error, and there it is? I want someone to sequence my whole genome and just tell me the worst, tell me that I carry genes which will give this child short sight and loose tendons (duh) and probably a mild scoliosis and/or spina bifida (but not the really bad kind) – all that I know I definitely or probably carry on my genome and that’s fine, that’s not caused any big problems for anyone in my family. It’s also possible, but quite a slim chance, that I carry something else which has had terrible consequences within my family; and this frightens me in the dead of night sometimes or when I’m not expecting it to frighten me, and it’s difficult to remember that it’s a very rare thing to carry and I will hopefully not have the bad luck to ever have children with a fellow carrier. And then there’s all the things I don’t carry as such but who knows what will happen, what instability and fragility there is in my genetic code, which, completely unpredictably, will cause all kinds of problems for a child of mine?

And yes, I say I’m not worried about the illnesses I may or may not have, but honestly, I’m terrible, I’ve had headaches and started to worry about tumours; there’s an odd lump on my elbow I keep meaning to get checked out and it’s almost certainly nothing but I’m sure it’s grown; I spent a good proportion of the last year wondering – academically – if I had MS, although why is, well, a story for another time. Let’s not go there…! I wasn’t actually frightened about it, more just drawing parallels and spotting symptoms and adding things up and it came to a fairly reasonable ‘what if’ which concerned rather than frightened me, but I don’t want to go to the doctor’s about it because it’s just too much like hard work to schedule an appointment and register at a surgery (that’s right, I’m not currently registered anywhere. Well, no, I am at Uni Town, but… well, that’s a rant for another day. The UHS is the Fort Knox of bureaucracy). And then you start spotting random symptoms which are almost certainly just nothing but could be Something Fairly Serious… if combined with a whole bunch of symptoms you don’t have. I know too much not to think about it all; and not enough to know for certain that I’m being seriously daft.

And then I think about the level of hypochondria in intelligent friends who do completely unconnected degrees – English, Engineering, Maths, Philosophy, Chemistry – and I realise that actually, I could be so much more concerned about so many more illnesses. I must have some reasonable level of knowledge after all. And at least I don’t know enough about helicopters to convince myself that they’re suddenly going to remember that according to Physics they have no good reason to stay in the air, and just land on my head.


Filed under Friendship, Happenings, Life, Relationships, Sex, Society, Thoughts, Uncategorized, University


I want to go on holiday somewhere hot and beautiful. I want a villa with a pool and cocktails and friends, I want a village with fresh bread and tomatoes so ripe they make the rest of the world seem as if it’s so far been lacking some crucial dimension. I want little ancient churches, intriguing markets, historic castles, secluded bays, beautiful long walks. I want to cook with fish I practically saw being pulled out of the sea and I want stars and crickets and lizards and sunshine and the kind of tan people will admire and envy vocally for weeks. Still. I had a lovely weekend, coming away with tales of foxes and insanity and shoes, of which more later. And I’m perfectly happy. But it could be sunnier.

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Infants' School

It’s in the name. I think four is far too young to be at school. You barely know your own name, your hands aren’t developed enough to hold a pen, and it isn’t fair to expect you to play nicely or sit still. Frankly I don’t know why we even try at that age. I’m moving to Sweden, or Denmark, or Norway.


Filed under Beginnings, Family, Happenings, Life, Society, Thoughts, World

What I Like About The Future

I have no idea what’s going to happen. I have no idea, either, what I’m going to want, and whether what I want this time next year is going to be the same as what I want now or somehow entirely different. And so it doesn’t matter that I don’t know what’s going to happen, because I also don’t know how I’m going to feel about it, so I basically have to assume that whatever it is it’ll be fine; because even if you could tell me what’s going to happen, how I feel about it now and how I will actually feel about it could well be two entirely different things.

So actually, yes, it’s all OK. Even though sometimes I would like someone to drop out of the sky and whisper in my ear, tell me about my future, promise me it contains Nobel prizes and a real-life Daniel Craig/Mr Darcy hybrid and a car that drives like an Aston and runs on solar power or the breath of fairies or something. It’s not going to happen (the sky person thing, I mean, not the Aston thing, that’s a definite). I don’t know what’s around the corner and, if I’m honest, I’d rather not find out too soon. It’s like reading the last page of the novel when you’re still only just getting up to the dramatic bit. You really don’t want to spoil the ending or know about twists in the tail, they’ll surprise you soon enough.

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Filed under Beginnings, Endings, Family, Friendship, Happenings, Introspection, Life, Relationships, Religion, Society, Thoughts, World

Twitterblogging III

Two people for whom I have more respect than I know how to put into words (really, I don’t) are getting married. In some ways I barely know either of them but, well, we follow one another’s fortunes and misfortunes and I can honestly say that their news has made me a very happy woman.

Now I’m going to go and swim in a millpond. A very good day, I think.


Filed under Beginnings, Blogging, Family, Friendship, Happenings, Life, Relationships, Religion, Society, Thoughts

Twitterblogging II

Barbecue, postcards, sunshine, friends. Trying to work out how A came to be, having got to know his family a little better. Still stumped on some aspects of that one…but then I met his friends. Depends to what extent ones’ friends can be considered to be a formative influence, I suppose. Am now inconveniently re-addicted to nutella. Then work – chaotic but good fun and almost as steep a learning curve as my first shift. Next shift is Thursday so I hope and assume that this will give me less time to forget everything I know. Now. Bed.

There’s a fly stuck in my room.


Filed under Blogging, Drink, Friendship, Happenings, Life

Twitterblogging I

I am spending the weekend at A’s. He may be throwing me a barbecue. I anticipate marvellous times. Shame about the weather really. On the other hand: oven-cooked meals, hot showers, and beds, all in the same place? Unheard-of pinnacles of delight, methinks.


Filed under Happenings, Life, Relationships

My Sister

I have fat thighs, am completely mad, and only look pretty if I hunch my shoulders, turning my knees in, and the person looking at me is on the sofa two feet below my eye level with her head hanging off the edge of the seat.

These are all things which my sister has told me about myself today. Of everything else, she says: “There’s a mad person with eyes on top of the bookshelves. But I have baked bread”.


Filed under Family, Happenings, Life, Society, Thoughts, Women


Tomorrow (this morning as you read, I expect) I’m starting my main summer placement, straight away followed in the evening by my first shift at our local pub. It’s going to be a long and tiring day, logistically demanding, and I will probably be catnapping on the train. I am excited. I will tell you more when I’m wearing my glasses and not actually already in bed with the pillow looking all plump and enticing.

Oh, yeah, and I’m cycling. Please no-one run a book on how many of my own rules I break in the first day?!

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Filed under Beginnings, Happenings, Life, Society, University, Work