Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Episode of blonde

OK, ladies, Aunty Kath who objects to the term ladies even though it is ironic, and Dan. I am having a truly, truly rotten week with my Situation, and also I have sprained my finger pole dancing (I do a routine!) and it has swollen up. And I don’t want to alarm anyone, but there was talk last night of some students possibly doing ‘a bit of a routine’ at the carnival next year, although as it stands all everyone would hear would be the squeak of my inner thighs sliding down the pole and that is not elegant. I need your advice. But first, in the spirit of sharing things that do not go well, as well as things that do, I am going to show you my first portrait in oils, completed today. It is unspeakable. Let this be an inspiration to all future portrait painters that when your first portrait in oils looks like Mr Potato Head you should not necessarily just give up and put all your paints in the bin, because I am sure my next one will be better.
Oh good Lord. Perhaps I should start with less complex living things, perhaps those guinea pigs who are hairy and look the same at both ends
You see peppers, I could do. People, they are more complicated (this is based on a Rembrandt sketch but you wouldn’t know it!). When we lined them all up at the end you have never seen such a rogue’s gallery. We could not discuss the finer points of the brushwork because we were laughing so hard, gosh they were terrible. The words ‘Colonel Gadaffi’ may have been spoken about mine but that is a rumour I will not confirm. I was not going to go to art class because I was quite miserable about my situation, but the tarot cards (I know I sound mad. I’m actually quite nice) were quite definite that I should, and they were right, because all we did was laugh and it was cheering. Also I learned a lot, so it was worth creating something a bit daft. Painting, u r difficult (a bit).

OK. Now here’s the bit I want your advice on. This is a recent picture of me, and my hair is still like this pretty much:
Happy! Terrible Rembrandt Homages still unthought of!
Now I want to go peroxide blonde. I have made an appointment for next week, I have had a consultation and the hairdresser says it will look ‘very cool’. I want to go blonde like this:
I know what this model would say to anyone who tried to put her in a situation like mine. She would say, stick your malicious vexatious lawsuit right up your bum. Can you look as good as me in red lipstick? Thought not
And although I don’t look like this model obvs, I promise if I had peroxide blonde hair I would sort out my eyebrows so I don’t look like Alastair Darling, and I will wear eye makeup (occasionally) so that it looks cool. In other words, I will dress it up. It will look fine. Won’t it? What do you think? Peroxide blonde or die (dye) and have a change and a new lease of life, or stay mousy and a bit fed up? (This isn’t a response to the miserable situation – I had rung the hairdresser before things got bad). I don’t want highlights, and I don’t want to look subtle – I want peroxide blonde or nothing. I want to look like Blondie! I want a new image! Tell me this isn’t a mistake! Partner is just about on the verge of locking me in the cupboard to stop any attempts at self-definition, because his taste in female adornment frankly makes the Amish look a bit racy, but I am fine. Because none of cupboards have locks and TBH since all the rain most of them don’t shut properly.

What do you think?

Sunday, 27 May 2012

I could get a piece of meat/ from a barren tree. Nothing ever spoiled on me

I have got a confession for you. I do not like gardening. There. I said it. It is like housework but with grass and I do not like housework, either. It is obviously very ironic, then, that we have a ridiculously large garden (ridiculously large for Cambridge, not for the rest of the world,) and if I am completely honest I sometimes have fantasies about selling it to a property developer. In fact, I have worked out where the paths would go and everything. I appreciate that this confession will now lead to my blacklisting and everybody unsubscribing from my blog but I think it is best that you know the truth. I don’t like it.

Strangely enough, though, the moment I admitted to myself that I really don’t like all the boring bits and decided instead to concentrate on the bits I might conceivably find more interesting – i.e. growing flowers and possibly dinner, rather than Strimming Edges and engaging with Weed Suppressant Membrane – all my plants started growing better. It was as if they had had a conference together and decided to reward my self-awareness. You see, this is why plants make me nervous. They have minds of their own.
I have actually watched Black Squirrel dig in these pots, there are literally no words for how bad that animal is. The spiky thing in the middle is a particularly naughty weed
The ones with actual flowers on are stocks. I bought them from Homebase, put them in a pot and did not kill them. This is an achievement for me on a par with, well, it is an achievement so great I have no parallel with which to illustrate it for you. And the straggly green crappy things are going to be Marigolds (not the gloves) which I have nurtured on the windowsill, drumroll, from seed. From seed! But this is my best one ever:
As God is my witness, I shall never go short of Saag Aloo again. So long as I don't run out of potatoes
Spinach. I put soil in a planter, I planted seeds straight in it, I waited an entire month for them to grow, and the day before I had decided to upend the planter and use it for something else I had green shoots and did a victory dance right in the teeth of the competent gardener next door. And look at it now! I pick bits! I eat bits! Everyone round mine come the zombie apocalypse! I have gone wild today and planted tomato plants in a gro-bag (apparently they come in different varieties and the woman on the market thinks you should have an opinion re which one you want. Who knew?*) and Oriental Salad Leaves. Who knows what will happen? I feel like Alan Titchmarsh. You leave my seedlings alone, bold hairy ginger cat from the house behind. My eye, it is upon you.

*Cambridge people, stall opposite M&S, 3 for £4, bargain.

(The title is from a Kristin Hersh song. I am showing my age. Also it is ironic I am thinking of this song because I am thinking of going vegetarian again. Yes. Bring on the tofu and the nutritional yeast, I think I'm woman enough).

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

For Dan

This is just to show my brother Dan my latest painting, because he was once foolish enough to show interest, and that means he must now be spammed for the rest of his life with renderings of increasingly bizarre vegetables. I am sparing you my Study Of Asparagus In A Purple Mug thus far though, Dan, as I do not like the way I have depicted the mug, although I do like the asparagus and particularly the gold highlights which are inspired by Klimt, who is no doubt turning in his grave.
I think we only painted peppers because the teacher is fed up of me painting things purple. I could see him thinking, ha, try turning that purple, damn you. I got a bit of a purple shadow in there, though
It is my opinion that oil painting is the Best Kind Of Painting, because, it all merges together and kind of paints it with you. It is like someone is helping! The Universe? Also, if you cock it up, you can just sigh and wipe it all off with a bit of kitchen paper and then start again. I did that twice!

This painting took me about 1 1/2 hours with time for chatting and biscuits. Partner laughs at this and says paintings are supposed to take longer, and he has never known anyone churn them out like me. Then he made me watch Tony Hancock in The Rebel, and now when I show him things he says, and when will we be working on Aphrodite At The Waterhole? Well be careful Partner, because that will show you if I take up sculpture and arrive home one day with a giant rock in my bike basket. Think on.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Adventures in nail art

Someone at work has started a ridiculous craze of ridiculousness and now I am trapped in an unhealthy co-dependent cycle of imitation and one-upmanship.
I am still waiting to wake up one day and want to look like Audrey Hepburn. I am sure it will happen
Nail varnish. It is cheap, it is easier to change than most of the rest of your life when you are bored of it, not everyone’s cuticles are as knackered as mine. Le Tout Cambridge is wearing it. Obviously I cannot confine myself to tasteful blues and greys etc (I think it was Vivianne who once said blue nails made her think of corpses) as I do not have taste, I must go Wild. I considered the Caviar Mani but decided I did not have that amount of money to blow on the little beads which would come off and end up in my sandwich. I tried Avon Mosaic Effects Crackle Top Coat and I thought that was rather cool, but now I have moved, inexorably and with the painful inevitability of a drunken person falling off a bar stool, towards Glitter.
Memo to self: stop watching TOWIE. Further memo to self: attempt to acquire subdued and cerebral style icons. Joan Bakewell? Possibly
This is Rimmel Disco Ball (second from right, top pic). It is rubbish. This is four coats – four! And you can hardly see the glitter. Don’t waste your £2.48 at Asda. What I want is the kind of glitter that would make a drag artist pause and wonder if it might be a tiny bit de trop, not a subtle shimmer. Subtle shimmers are for skirting boards not nails. So when I heard a rumour of pots of nail glitter in Superdrug I was off there with a beady expression. And you know what? Since I last got into the nail thing, there is a whole world out there of nail art. There are stickers. There are foils (which make your nails look metallic? I don’t know). There are nail art pens (I very much doubt my capacity to produce anything attractive with a nail art pen but for those of you with steady hands - there are nail art pens!).

Do you ever wonder whether, if your life ever goes very, very wrong, there will be a moment when you think, stop. I should just not be doing this? Well, I can now tell you from personal experience that that moment comes when you find yourself, at 37, with a mortgage, a partner, extensive professional experience and a complicated emotional past, looking at the nail art transfers in Clare’s Accessories and thinking, shall I spend £3 on some rhinestones, and if I do, should I put them on every nail or just my thumbs. Well, of course I didn’t buy the rhinestones. I didn’t buy the glitter either. Nail glitter?  At my age? That would just be silly. Wouldn’t it?
1st rule of glitter: the minute you open it you have glitter all over your house for ever and ever
Yes, absolutely silly when you can get a great big pot of glitter for kids cheaper and bigger at your local friendly art shop. Hooray! Now I just have to think of a time when I will not need to do anything too complicated with my hands for an hour so I can try it out (base coat and dip). Might that time come tomorrow? I think it may. Can I cook a vegetarian shepherd’s pie mostly with my elbows if necessary? I think I can.

(You can get lip transfers that make your lips glittery as well. I mean, I won’t do. I’m just saying that FYI. They have them in Boots!).

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Sorbetto tops and why stay stitching is probably a good idea

I have been sewing and using up stash.
Peacock feathers are a bad omen and mean DEATH. I don't mind. I like bad omens
I’m making Sorbetto tops (this is a free pattern from Colette and a very nice one, thank you Colette). Because of my aforementioned exciting IT issues, I could not print the pattern out but had to have it done at the print shop next to work by the man who works there who has a patient face. His patient face did not shift even when I made him measure the test square particularly carefully, ‘because it is a dressmaking pattern and if it is not 10cm square NONE OF THIS WILL WORK!!!’. Anyway, it was worth me and the patient man going through all that, because, although the Sorbetto top looks boxy and a bit frumpy when you have made it, when it is on, it is actually very nice, and an extremely useful shape. I wear mine with my green skinny jeans from Top Shop. I cannot believe skinny jeans are still in fashion but that was literally all they had in Top Shop, although I am a bit disappointed not to have realised that when I wore them with with my funky red flat boots I would look like an elf. Not a funky fashion-forward elf. The kind of elf who would be hanging around the back of Santa’s toymaking conveyor belt, smoking and making dismissive gestures behind the back of that Patron Saint Of Christmas.

I am not happy with the binding on the grey sorbetto top – the neckline doesn’t quite hang right. I think this might be because when they tell you to stay stitch, actually they mean it. But never mind! I have more fabric,

There is a deer on this fabric somewhere as well. The irony, it burns
And I think I might make another sorbetto top. I bought this fabric cheap cheap (because one of the advantages of the sorbetto top is that it only takes a metre, + any old crappy bits you can scare up for the binding) from Paperchase on Tottenham Court Road, in the sale. The man on the counter was having a bad day so I helped him cut it (‘follow the stripes!’). This fabric is knowingly ironic. If you say that first off, that makes it ok to make and wear a top with butterflies and kittens on it when you are 37. Knowingly ironic, remember that. Gosh. I am almost a hipster.

(Also, I have mastered a new spin in pole dancing. I can do three now. I can do step around, fireman + various exciting fireman variations, and cartwheel. The girls on TOWIE were doing it, and I would like to point out that I am better than they were. I am not even just better than Gemma, who seemed to be wearing trousers and a big jumper and not trying at all. Do you know what this means? It means anyone can learn to do anything, at any age, despite any natural disadvantages. So if anyone is reading this and has leanings towards origami or revolutionising nuclear fission or something, don’t let anything stop you. If I can learn to pole dance, you can certainly revolutionise the physics establishment).

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Angry Picture, Happy Bag

OK, first thing, because I feel a bit embarrassed about this so just want to clarify: after I did the dramatic post a bit ago about How Blogger Has Stopped Me Blogging, The Bastards (and thank you all so much for all your comments and encouragement, it was much appreciated), I realised I could go back to the old interface, so I can still blog with pictures for a bit until they take it away completely, which hopefully won’t be for a couple of months. So after a couple of months I am hoping I might have worked out a solution even if it is just using the local community centre’s wifi (that would work! I can sit there with my coffee and wave to everyone I know from the committee and pole dancing, and they will all come over and critique my pictures!)
Hello hello! I'm a monster!
Anyway, so, quick one today. As things were a bit rough at the end of last week with my Situation, I did not have within me reserves of concentration/ intelligence to spend on anything but did not want to sit staring at the tv as that doesn’t help. You brood. Luckily, though, the Universe had sent me a Monster Bag Kit! We sell these at work and I had been trying to put one together but customers kept interrupting me selfishly wanting to buy things (joke) so I had brought it home, and I finished it. I think this possibly makes me the only person in the world who has ever actually finished a Monster Bag Kit. It was a bit of a challenge. I would like to see the child who could make this as I had to wrestle the corners (it is very strong felt) and my needle broke. So that would have to be a child with strong hands and a store of backup needles, also probably experience of selling bags on etsy. Recommended age 30+, as my manager said as she saw me struggling with the embroidery on the front and swearing. Anyway, isn’t it cute? If anyone ever stumbles upon a Monster Bag Kit, I think you should line it and put a snap fastening on and that would make it very functional (because it is strong), but as it is a sample for the shop I have not done this. I am very happy to take this back to the shop for display as although I enjoyed making it I have no use for a Monster Bag, although I will try not to stand over customers hissing, you be careful with that bag, I hope you’ve washed your hands. Besides, if I am good and return completed samples they may let me loose on the fimo. Or the resin. Oooh….
Brooding. Not brooding! Angry. Happy happy!
We have a little display of my pictures near our fireplace and the Monster Bag is leaning next to my picture where everyone says, were you in a bad mood when you painted it. And actually - I was! But not by the end! And it is my favourite picture so far. It is Stormy Sky Over Bloomsbury and the buildings look odd as I was playing with perspective (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it). So, Angry Picture, Happy Bag. I feel like I’ve unwittingly made conceptual art. Conceptual art? God. Think it might be time to knit something…

Friday, 11 May 2012

Down the rabbit hole and up the pole

I am on our local neighbourhood committee (lots of fun! Everyone join your local neighbourhod committee! We are apparently the most deprived ward in East Anglia!), and when it was mentioned by the man who runs the local community centre that they were running pole dancing classes, then my ears pricked up. Because, readers, I have been wanting to try pole dancing for the longest time, and I had googled previously but was put off by the amount of money you had to pay for a course. This one is much more affordable (in line with yoga), I could pay per class, and also the community centre is literally five minutes from my house. So I could be on the sofa in my trackies with a cup of tea and Judge Judy at 6:50pm and with my thighs wrapped round a pole at 7pm if I wanted to. I could not resist. So I am now learning pole dancing and it is huge amounts of fun, I am very glad I started, and so I would like to tell you about it in case you would like to try it too.

Also it is socially less awkward than yoga (not in general, only for me), because with yoga I only like one particular kind and (unbelievably!) partner’s ex is one of the major teachers of this particular kind in Cambridge and is apparently besties with the Guru in India who invented it (I swear I did not know this). So I am restricted, as I am nervous of bumping into her as she does not like me (she once said to me, ‘and did they have whippets and flat caps in that little northern house you grew up in, Susie?’) and I am not dealing with that kind of thing while I am doing a down dog. So, pole dancing it is for the moment, or at least until my nice yoga teacher returns from maternity leave. Here are some questions people have asked me:

1/ What do you do in classes?
Well, I have only had two lessons so I am no expert ;-). I thought we would spend the first month perhaps leaning against the pole a bit or walking round it in a strutting fashion, but no, we were straight up it and spinning round. Basically you do different types of spins, you climb the pole in various ways, grip it between your legs, and dangle off it, and you do a bit of dance around it and on the floor to make up a routine to music. Excitingly, you can have your pole set either to static or spin, so when it is static it is like swinging round a lamppost (for example), and when it is on spin it spins with you and you really get some speed up. This was a shock to me at first but my eyes have uncrossed now and I am better.

2/ Is it difficult?
Yes, it is. If you have a background in gym or dance then I suspect it’s easier (I don’t! – So don’t let that put you off!) but the first lesson is a real killer. You end up covered with bruises all the way down the insides of your thighs. After my first time as well, my arms were so painful I could hardly change gear on the car and I could not – too much information alert – pull my pants up (it’s ok, Partner did all the jokes). My muscles didn’t work. I had to wriggle into my pants in a hula-hooping motion. So, for your first time, don’t schedule any pant action that might be witnessed for the day after, and don’t try to wear skinny jeans. And don’t plan any journeys where you’re going to have to change gear a lot. I mean, the A10 might be alright (straight 50mph behind a tractor until you hit Hunstanton) but no city centres. Second gear made me whimper.

3/ What do you wear?
Well, I wondered whether I should email the teacher before I started about what to wear but I thought, no, then she will think I think I need nipple pasties or something and have got the wrong end of the stick, so I didn’t. Then she sent me an information sheet which said, you will have to wear shorts as you need to be able to grip the pole with the flesh on your thighs and I thought, Christ no, so I wore trackie bottoms, but she was absolutely right (I slid down). Also, you need bare feet and just any kind of tshirt on top – the room I learn in is hot so I wear a vest. So, if you are starting pole dancing, here is what you can do: if you go into Sweaty Betty, they have some tightish shorts which are an adjustable length. They are hugely expensive but how many more pairs of shorts are you ever going to buy? And (says she delicately), you may need to explore bikini line options (for the first time in many years I find myself eyeing up Immac), because, you are not static, you open your legs wide and fling them about and your shorts ride up high, and there are some feminist statements I am not quite up to making. Which brings me to:

4/ How can you, as a feminist, do this. (This was partner’s question).
This is a difficult one. Me and third wave feminism – we have our problems. We are not perfect together. Intellectually I am not necessarily on the reclaiming-stuff-associated-with-sex-work-is-liberating page, I am not. And I want you to make no mistake here: pole fitness is a misnomer. Pole fitness is pole dancing. You are dancing. You wiggle your bottom. You slide down the pole. You thrust your groin forward. Its origins are, shall we say, evident to me. However (and I accept I might be alone on this one), I have sometimes done things in accord with the finest second wave feminist theory and expected to feel liberated. And I have not felt liberated, I have felt a bit crap. So, now I do not engage too much with theory and I just try to be feminist on an individual level: I try to support women. And I can guarantee you that if you try pole dancing, these are the first two thoughts that will come into your head:

1/ God! This is really hard, oh, ok, is this it perhaps, whheeeeeeeee, oh, my arms ache. God!
2/ God! And I thought strippers were just dangling off a pole with no clothes on and it was really easy and I felt a bit sorry for them. Actually what they are is incredibly skilled professionals and now I feel a bit daft.

So basically I think you are doing something which will make you feel a huge amount of professional respect for a group of women who you might not have thought of primarily in that context before. I get why pole dancing is problematic, I do: but as the saying goes, I think, if this is wrong, I don’t wanna be right.

So there we are, that is pole dancing in a nutshell, and I encourage anyone to try it. Just make sure you get some really short shorts (you really do need to grip with flesh) and don’t worry about the fat on your thighs because no-one else can see it. Perhaps wear those shorts to the Co-op first, get used to them a bit? I’ll be the one in the nipple pasty aisle, rethinking all my earlier stereotypes. I’ll see you there. You bring the biscuits x

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose

One of the things I try not to do on this blog is complain too much about things, not because I am ‘a bloody Pollyanna’ as certain people cough partner cough may have said in the past, but because I think if you concentrate on positivity you feel more positive blah blah blah (I do think that). However, some of what I sometimes want to tell you touches on something a bit miserable, and I have hitherto never quite been sure how deal with this, for a couple of reasons. One, I don’t like concentrating on miserable things, as I said before. Two, I am emotionally in Stalker Mode with this thing, and I am uncomfortable even acknowledging it exists, because that feels too much like poking the crazy. And three, because I suspect it may hit the Daily Mail or similar at some point, at which time some poor freelancer is going to google everyone involved and obviously they are absolutely going to hit pay dirt with me. So I don’t want to make it any worse. (‘From her online “weblog”, Susie appears to enjoy knitting, moaning about Tesco, and following cats around Cambridge taking photographs of them. We were not clear whether the owners had given their permission’).
This cat is my new Bestie and runs up when he sees me. I wasn't strangling him, I don't take out my suppressed aggression on little furry creatures
What a conundrum, eh. But I have realised that quite a bit of what I sometimes want to share may not entirely make sense without me saying this to you initially (well, saying this makes my posts make sense to me. You are going to read it and think, ok, right, no wiser, aren’t internet people weird. But, I promise I’m not weird, just very unlucky and formerly with an inadequate self-protection instinct). So. For the last couple of years (draws up therapist’s couch, lies down, sighs,) I have been Under The Shadow Of An Unpleasant Situation. I am not ill, Partner is certainly not as he is thriving and growing nice thick hair on his back, Aunty Kath does not have anything that would prevent her eating petits fours, nor has Milo The Lively Husky done anything terrible and shamed me, his proud aunt. It is not anything anyone needs to worry about or be sympathetic towards (in fact, please don’t be sympathetic. I pretend it doesn’t exist). It is absolutely not something I can blog about, and it’s so utterly bizarre that it’s quite hard to explain, so I’m just going to say that, although none of my family are involved in any way and it isn’t about my family at all, I feel a very special kind of sympathy and fellow-feeling for this man, and I wish I had read a book like this enough years ago that it would have entered into my thick head and I had taken action to protect myself.
Experimental Cityscape In Pastels, you are all invited if I ever have an exhibition and I can guarantee there will be wine. Indeed I will be on my back the way this week is going
So although I obviously can’t say that I spend my waking life brooding on my terrible Situation and gnawing the carpets, because of course I don’t, it would also be untrue to deny that I have had some dark moments, and I will certainly have more. (Indeed, I will have them in June! So if I disappear for a bit next month, don’t worry).

Because of this, a lot of my thinking over these past few years has been, what do you do when you are going through something a little bit miserable, for which no end is ever in sight? How do you act? What do you do? How do you not despair, how do you not become bitter, and how do you believe that all people are not like some people (they're not)? Well (and, hooray, this is where I can start being cheerful again), what you do is, you think, ok, the worst probably hasn’t happened because eagles have not actually swooped down and carried off Partner just as he is off to pay the council tax and carried off the cheque as well, but, a fairly enormously crappy thing has happened, worrying about it has not helped one single tiny jot, iota or bit, and now I am free. What a waste of time worrying was. What a waste of time thinking about everybody else was. All those things I might have wanted to do but thought I was too old/ not good enough/ too Middle Class Cambridge/ not Middle Class Cambridge enough – now I can do them. I’ve been nice, and look where it’s got me. Now I’m going to be true to myself, I’m going to have fun, and I’m not going to care one tiny little bit about what people think, because as someone on a very nice message board I sometimes visit has as their signature, those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.
I buy shorts, I wear them without shame because all my cellulite is round the back and I can't twist far enough to see it
OK, lovely, got that one out of the way, now, let’s never poke the crazy again and never revisit it, but now you see I’m not in the grip of a midlife crisis. No! It’s much more peculiar! ;-). So tomorrow I can tell you about the pole dancing. I’ve just got one regret. Who remembers the gold Top Shop hotpants I saw last year? Well, I wish I’d bought them now, don’t I?

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Thanks for the memories

*** Edited to add. Oh God, seriously, after all that (see below), I realise now you can just use the old interface for a few more months. So I might just do that and try and ring virgin media again and see if I can sort something out because, look, this is silly, I have got two degrees and a cycling proficiency certificate. Sorting my internet out without buying a whole new computer cannot be entirely beyond me. I am going off now to mutter to myself and feed the birds like a mad person. Move along everyone, nothing to see here***

Just checking in in case you were wondering about me (I mean, I know why would you etc etc but, just in case…;-) ) and to tell you why I’m not blogging. Readers: it’s not you, it’s me. As you other folks on blogger know, blogger updated their interface recently and it no longer works with my computer, which is very, very, very old, and has a very old OS. So, I can do words (like this post), but I can’t do pictures any more. And we don’t want a series of posts that go ‘and then I saw a great big pink elephant, walking down the road holding hands with a kitten. And I got a photo and I uploaded it but I can’t show you so you’ll have to take my word for it!!!’, do we? Because that would just be depressing.

So I have been (perhaps temporarily, I don’t know) defeated by my technology problems, and I can’t think of a way to sort them out that doesn’t cost money, which I haven’t really got (I mean, don’t feel sorry for me though, because if I didn’t spend all my money on canvases and picks and pole dancing lessons and whatnot I might be able to save up for a new computer). If I suddenly think of a way to get online that doesn’t involve me getting further into debt or trekking across Cambridge to use someone’s wifi for my laptop (I haven’t got wifi here, and I’m not sure I can have it because I think the computer might be too old to work with anything other than an ethernet cable. I’ve tried plugging the ethernet cable into the laptop, which works everywhere else but not with mine. I’ve tried ringing Virgin Media. I’ve given up!), then I shall be back with pics and adventures and all sorts, although I’m being a bit boring at the moment and you’re not missing anything (well, you’re missing the pole dancing and the life drawing classes and all sorts of woolly things and opinions but I’m sorry. I’m stymied by technology! :-( ).

So while I’m on a possibly permanent break, let me take this opportunity (sniffs) to say what a brilliant group of blog readers you’ve been, and how much fun I’ve had, and what a lovely community it’s been to feel a part of. Thank you everyone. Thanks for the memories, and perhaps one day I’ll be able to understand technology sufficiently that there can be more! (I mean, it can’t be harder than climbing a shiny pole, can it? Of course not).

Love you all. Keep on blogging x