Today I bought myself something. It wasn't expensive (about 13 quid) but it is worth ten times that to me. I live in very basic circumstances and the onslaught of the cold weather has made me grumpy. I have no efficient heating you see and after living for four months in the heat of the med earlier in the year...the cold has been a bit of a shocker to the system. Here in the Fens it bites early...and last night I was so cold in bed...despite the extra fleecy blanket...the joggers..the hoody and the scarf (I kid you not)...that I had to move a mattress into the living area of my accommodation where it is a few degrees warmer....I couldn't get to sleep because I was soooo cold.
Today I hot-footed (don't you just love how I did that?...'hot'...'footed'..) it down to Whit's very own hardware store and purchased a heater. Of the fan variety.
Now it's so warm in here that I am sweating and have the stirrings of a headache. I have stripped off to a t-shirt and shorts...but I AM NOT TURNING IT OFF...no...first I will open a window and the door...and let Jack Frost run all over my wee little body before I will turn it off - or even turn it down.
For the very first time in about 6 days I can honestly say that I am warm...Oh joy of joys. Joy of deepest joys.
PS. I also ordered an electric blanket from Amazon. When that arrives I will be delirious.
Last night I had a long chat (by the wonders of modern technology...oh how we love Skype) with an old pal. She's lovely. Bright, beautiful, feisty, funny, and amazing in lots of ways. She's had a relationship break apart and as a result she has broken apart. She doesn't deserve to be feeling the way she is feeling. Not at all. The person who has hurt her is not even aware of the pain he has caused.
I know that in time she'll recover - because we all do - and I know it's all part of the journey - it all needs to be embraced and learned from and ...in the end...she'll be better because of this lesson.
I wish I could have transferred one ounce of the respect that I feel for her into her head - and I wish I could make her understand what a worthwhile and fabulous person she is.
Upon analysis of the relationship (I told you it was a long chat)...we discovered that the third party wasn't who she thought they were...behaved in unacceptable ways from the beginning of the relationship....to cut it short...wasn't who she though they were...at all! But - because we are all driven from a need to find love and be accepted - she had ignored and pushed aside the signs. We have all done this...some of us...many, many times. She was seduced by the passion (her own passion) for being loved by somebody else. That is what becomes addictive...it's not necessarily about the other person at all.
I urged her to take some time and look at herself and celebrate who she is. She is absolutely worth celebrating (as we all are).
Relationships are complicated...full of expectations...inner needs of the child that we all are wanting to be satisfied....scars from the past needing to be healed. No wonder it's hard!
She's an amazing woman - and deserves only the very best in her life. The third person wasn't really the best. He wasn't even alright for 'just now'. She, however - is the best...and I hope she finds the best inside herself - learns to love that 'best' person like all her friends do...learns to look in the mirror and see 'the very best' looking back at her.
Well..it's all been going on around here. Actually that opening phrase makes things sound a tad more exciting than they really are...but it's been okay. Actually better than okay - but we don't want to gild the lily more than is necessary :)
I've had a lovely weekend with a Gentleman Caller. (About time). When I say 'weekend' I mean that we shared the afternoon on Saturday and then most of the day on Sunday. We certainly didn't share Saturday night (as in 'over night'). Cue 'harrumphing and straightening of cardigan'...we don't go in for that kind of shenanigans until later...much later....(if at all).
Anyway - he's very nice. I like him quite a lot. However...I don't know him very well yet - and we're completely aware that people only show their good side to begin with (of course that's not a problem for me because I only have as good side :).
We spent Saturday mooching around in Peterborough - drinking coffee - and having a wander - including through the doors of Peterborough Cathedral...which satisfied my love for beautiful old buildings and ancient craftmanship (it's a very beautiful building)...then found our way into the Lakeland store (you did what?.....oh how sexy!)....well..I am 48...and I love Lakeland! Then spent a while browsing through Waterstones bookshop. On Saturday night we went for a curry here in Whit...which gave us the chance to have a proper conversation (OH I do like a good conversation).
Yesterday we did some research on the tinterweb and decided to travel to a nearby local town to visit a National Trust property...sadly - when we got there - it was shut. So we went for coffee...browsed a department store (I purchased a very natty little ensemble of gloves, hat and scarf in a very fetching purple colour)....and then went for Sunday lunch here in Whittlesea (throbbing metropolis that it is).
Then it was time for my friend to leave. Verdict? A very nice weekend...some intelligent conversation.....quite a few mirth moments....nice food.....a great camper van (yes - he has a
Will I be seeing him again? I hope so. That would be nice.
I've just spotted that it's over FIVE YEARS since I started this blog. Five years. That's a long time. I haven't done anything in my life before for five years. I haven't kept a job for five years. I haven't stayed with a chap for five years. I haven't lived in one house or city for five years. I'm not...as you might say...'constant' with many things...but there must be something about doing this that appeals for me to have carried it on for so long.
Actually I have had some things in my life for more than five years. I have friends who I have loved for longer...far longer...Moya I have K+L (known and loved) for 25 years...Fiona I have K+L for 18 years...Christian and Victoria I have K+L for 18 years+, Helen and Andrew I have K+L for about the same, the divine Mrs Morris I have K+L for 43 years (YES!!!! I know it's a long time) and my lovely daughter I have K+L for 22 years.
There are other people I have K+L for great lengths of time and I am proud and honoured by these friendships. These people know me...really know me...and love and accept me for exactly who I am.
Well...it's getting mighty chilly round here now. I've just been over to the bathroom block and spotted steam coming off the lake. That means the water is warmer than the air...bloody 'eck...yesterday the water was 14 degrees c - which unless you're wearing a dry suit (thankfully I was) is just a tad too cold to be splashing about it.
This week has been interesting.....I dived with a guy on Wednesday who wanted to do five dives in a day. Five dives? Who do you think you are? Jacques Coustea? The most I've ever done in one day is three...and that was pushing it! We have dive tables and computers and calculations to keep us safe....and along comes a chuff who wants to do five in a day..I wouldn't have minded if he was a good diver...but as we approached the entry point he started shaking (as my brother would say....'like a sh*tting dog')....anyway we did three - saw a huge carp - at least a metre and a half long...and then he was happy.
Yesterday I had another diver who hasn't quite finished his qualification and required / wanted more practise. Another trembler. The first dive went well....he came out with a huge grin on his face and said the dive was 'awesome'...then on the second dive...when visibility was reduced to about 25cm (I'm not kidding....minestrone anyone?) he panicked, and decided he wanted to surface...not a problem...but it is if you come up from 12 metres in a hurry. I'm afraid I had to tell him off! He still wants to come back next week and dive with me again though! Secretly I think these chaps like a woman who will tell them off :)
Today I'm expecting a Gentleman Caller. A few weeks ago we had a 'do' here on the Saturday evening....an Army reunion no less. I was serving behind the bar, and apparently caught the eye of an ex- captain (only officers for this girl). He quite caught my eye too. Anyway we chatted and I asked him for his number. Since then we've spoken a couple of times and today he is driving all the way from Bristol (a distance of some 150+ miles) to come and take me out for the day (Blimey - that's keen).
Yesterday I enjoyed a very grand day out in London Town. My lovely, lovely and uber talented cousin Richard has a bijou little hair salon there and when I live in the UK he looks after my barnett. So..on the train I went (which only takes an hour) jumped on the tube and by lunchtime was sporting a new look. It's a bit shorter than before...but I love it. It's very me!
And then...if that wasn't enough excitement for one day I was joined by the very beautiful and luscious Fi-fi who had come all the way down from Sheffield to spend the afternoon with me (she got her hair cut too!). We had lunch......in any stone's throw there is always some lovely food available in London...and a fab girly gossip. I so miss Fiona now that I don't see her every day.
Sadly - we didn't get to see the Queen. Maybe next time.
I was thinking (can anybody smell burning?) about all kinds of stuff last night. About my Dad, obviously and about me and who I am and what I do and how I am and who I love and all that kind of gooky stuff. I suppose a parent's death will do that for you (You'd be a bit of a cold fish if it didn't...right?)
Anyway...I have wonderful folks around me..I am loved by a few very good people who make the world better and am liked (I think) by a few more. Not that many - but more than enough. I am blessed. I have the most wonderful daughter who is just lovely in every way. I've had my share of fun, and my share of disasters along the way. I have an awesome Mum and two very very lovely brothers.
We all take after our parents in little ways (nature or nurture?) and I have some of my Mum's character, and quite a lot of my Dad's. Because of who he was - I didn't really like myself when I recognised some of my father's characteristics in me. My Dad wasn't a bad person but...like many of his generation he was fixed in his ways and could never admit wrong and therefore take steps to improve or even apologise when he made mistakes. I think he was quite an angry person and he was controlling and a little bit dictatorial. You could have any kind of deep or meaningful conversation (you know...one of those where all participants gain something and nobody has to 'win') because he just didn't know how. He was, in turn, very much like his own father (who - incidentally he didn't understand or like very much...funny? eh?)
I was laid in bed last night thinking about him and his death and then I just felt a big kind of sense of relief - it was as if all the things about myself that are like he was...all the things that I don't like...just lifted away. It was as if I don't have to be like him anymore..because he's no longer here. As if those parts of me that were most like him had died with him.
I have no idea what this all means..or of it's true...or if it's all just the over-thinking of some 40+ mad batty middle aged woman late at night...who knows?
I suppose I felt a kind of peace. Now that can't be quite right..can it? or can it?
I wanted to say Goodbye to my Dad. He died today. He was fishing in Spain and he had a heart attack. I hope it was quick and he didn't suffer. When I was a girl I loved my Dad very much...but the person he became and the person I became just didn't get along and for the last few years there wasn't much love between us.
We hadn't seen each other for a few years...funnily enough the last time we met was at his Mother's funeral.
I remember lots of things about my Dad from my childhood....some of them funny, some of them nice...and some of them not so nice.
I can't truly say that I'll miss him...but I just kind of wanted to say 'Goodbye'.