27 Jan 2018

A Tea Addict and A Coffee Addict Compare Notes

COFFEE ADDICT: "People seem to think tea and coffee are interchangeable because they both contain caffeine, but they're totally different."
TEA ADDICT: "Yes. A cup of tea is like being woken up with a hug. A cup of coffee is like being woken up by being punched in the head."
COFFEE ADDICT: "It's not quite like being punched in the head."
TEA ADDICT: "Not even punched in the head... in a good way?"
COFFEE ADDICT: "No, it's more like... being peeled. Or emerging from an egg."
TEA ADDICT: "Oh, OK. To me it still feels like being punched in the head."
COFFEE ADDICT: "To me, tea feels like it's just... nothing."

07 Jan 2018

December Has Stopped Now

bicycle at top of hill near trees

tangled trousers on washing line in snow

dramatic sky just before dusk

dramatic sky just before dusk with b few birds in it

sunset with washing line

at the pond

Now we are out of the Arbitrarily Stupidest Month of the Year TM and can get on with things again.

I have been getting on with:

a) Temporarily forgetting that the age of my body is 37, not 7, and running down a grassy hill screaming, just for the hell of it. Then wondering, an hour later, "why does my knee hurt?" and then, the next day, "Why do my legs hurt in four places and why is walking down hills now suddenly painful?"
b) Adding "running down hills screaming" to my list of things that I must not do any more because I am apparently too old. I'm not even that old! What is this? I don't approve.
c) Two things that are large, long-term projects that are taking ages so I feel like I can't disclose any details until they're done, which is kind of frustrating but one day they will be finished. They will.
d) Spending the daylight part of the winter solstice on a bicycle in some trees, which I entirely recommend. (Obviously this was before the end of December, but it is still getting mentioned because it was nice.)
e) Finding a skirt in a charity shop the other day that seems to be a kind of distillation of the nineties, all crushed velvet and black and multicoloured floral patterns, almost exactly the same fabric as a hat that one of my friends had in 1996. Obviously I bought it, and was so excited about it that I changed into it in the pub toilets straightaway afterwards.
f) Not my tax return, ohgodohgod

08 Dec 2017

Waiting Room

fire, cat, feet

The fireplace and cat belong to my mother. The feet belong to my sister.

In the waiting room in Carlisle railway station there is a metal plaque which dedicates the building to the memory of a (named, but I don't remember the name, which is awful of me) signal worker, Whose Quick Thinking on 1st May 1984 Saved This Station From a Serious Mishap. I have never seen more intrigue on a single sheet of metal before.

I was sharing the waiting room with one other person: a man with a lot of luggage on a trolley. It was very quiet. It was about 11.30am. I was very hungry, but the only food I had with me except my planned-sandwich-for-lunch-later-on was a multipack and a half of Twiglets, some of which had gone out of date in July, and some of which had gone out of date in September. I had removed these from my mum's house because they clearly weren't being eaten there, they were still crunchy, and they would definitely be eaten if they were in a location that they shared with me. She was glad to be rid of them.

The man with the trolley full of luggage went out, so I ate a packet of the Twiglets (the went-out-of-date-in-July ones) as there was nobody to disturb with crunching any more. Immediately after I'd finished them, he and his luggage trolley came back in, so that was good timing.


An Interesting thing about Words ALTHOUGH now this article has been published surely everyone is going to be listening out for these techniques and they won't work any more OH NO

27 Nov 2017



The past week or so featured the complete disappearance of all of my websites, due to a massive hardware failure at the Lovely Icelandic Hosting Company (which may or may not have been an attack, but no-one's sure yet). Anyway, I spent a week with no websites and several customers emailing me about the absence of said websites, but thanks to quite a few people in Iceland apparently not sleeping for more than two out of every twenty-four hours over a period of a week, now they are all back online and phew.

On the other hand, I have now acquired an exciting enormous double-decker pannier rack to look ridiculous on my tiny folding bicycle. This will enable me to carry large items of luggage on the sides without regularly making heel contact with them. I can become a bit excitable around bicycle luggage, so this may be dangerous.