Tuesday, 29 April 2008

Monday was a sad day

I was in late because I had a doctors appointment. After it was over I was just very tired and sad and wanted to go home instead of trekking into work but had a little walk in the fresh air and it perked me up so I decided that I had better shift my arse. I promised myself a milkshake if I did which got me hot footing my way to the bus stop. My route took me along a fairly empty road that leads down a hill to Cowley road. At the top are some flats that I had to cut through to get to the road and then it's straight down the hill. Either side of the road are playing fields which make it quite empty. There are a few houses on one side at the bottom and a cycle path pops out about 3/5ths of the way down but all in all it's quite pleasant to walk along before reaching the chaos that is Cowley.
Apart from yesterday.
Somehow I always attract the weirdos. I was bumbling down the road when I noticed two things. Firstly, there was no one else around on the road apart from the second thing I noticed which was a guy who was peaking out at me from the end of the cycle lane. I didn't really think too much of this at the time other than having a sense of foreboding that he was
a) going to be unwashed and
b) probably going to ask me for money.
These assumptions were possibly a little unjust given the distance and the fact that I couldn't see that much of him but let's call it a gut instinct. As it was he didn't ask me me for any money- something that I would have been grateful for had it not been for the fact that he was instead having a wank. I'd already decided that I was going to try and put as much pavement between the two of us as possible but I didn't want to appear rude and I couldn't cross over as there was no pavement on the other side so I plumped for walking along the curb. I hoped I could look occupied enough that he wouldn't bother me for cash. Thankfully this meant that I didn't get a good look at exactly what he was doing and was relatively unaware until the dodgy sounds got a bit louder after I had walked past.
So I felt really crap about life at that point. To make up for this I had a fudge milkshake and spent the afternoon doing mindless chores that enabled me to sit in front of my computer and watch all my favourite Mighty Boosh episodes and Eddie Izzards Dress to Kill tour on YouTube. I was late home because of the late start but I then found some time to knit before bed which was the first time in about a week(!) so I was then happy again.

Last weekend

I do remember. We got up early doors on saturday and went into town to buy crockery and collect the photos from our scottish holiday. We then went and bought a boot load of compost and some propagators so that I can get my seeds on the go. Finally we went up to charity shop central and had a good mooch around. I wanted some shoes for sunday as we were scheduled for a birthday lunch with my nana so I popped into Peacocks (I figured that it was pointless spending lots of money on shoes I wasn't going to wear very often) and discovered that although they had appropriate footwear none of it fitted me as their version of a size 6 foot is one of someone who has been shrunk in the wash and thus had midget feet. This disappointment was made up for by the fact that I found some lovely crochet blankets in another shop and a fantastic pair of shoes in T. K. Maxx after we made an emergency run there later in the day.
I had a lovely afternoon potting up, digging and sowing seeds. My lettuces, cucumbers, pumpkins, gourds and tomatoes are now out and getting ready to sprout. I have replaced the bay tree that I accidentally killed and I'm hoping that it will have grown in enough by the time the mother-in-law visits that she doesn't notice it's a different plant.
Sunday we went to Gloucester and had a lovely lunch with the family in celebration of my nanas 86th birthday. We had a lovely lunch but my nan was having a bad day memory wise and kept repeating herself. She also refused to wear her hearing aid so we all had to repeat ourselves as well- usually loudly, which must have annoyed all the other guests in the restaurant. I got to wear my new shoes and look fan-tab-ulous darling. It did make me realise just how much of a bunch of midgets my mums side of the family is though. It felt like I could have picked them all up and pocketed them one by one! The evening was spent curled up on the sofa watching the new disappointingly predictable episode of Midsomer Murders. We'd worked it out by about the 2nd ad-break though we had to sit through to the end just to make sure of course :)

Last week

Just disappeared on me I'm afraid! I have no recollection of what I was doing for most of the time other than avoiding the creepy chap who was visiting the department for the week. I think I worked out what it was that was bothering me however- he kept invading my personal space. For some reason every time he came into my office to ask me to move a specimen this involved him walking right into the room and standing just off of my shoulder- it made me quite uncomfortable and it was more than a little wearing so come friday I was exhausted.
I do remember how I spent some of my evenings though. The husband and I had the chance to have a few games of darts now that we have the board up in the kitchen. I actually managed to beat him in one game which I have to admit was probably fluke. I'm really not very good- my darts seem to twist as I throw them so they get lots of spin and I'm only hitting what I aim at about one tenth of the time. But I score consistently and just well enough that it means the husband has to concentrate on what he's doing. We also invested in some ping-pong paddles and balls and shall be making use of the table in the nearby park at some point. We meant to go thursday evening but it was really windy so we played on the kitchen table instead. The husband managed to get 6/6 balls into the cat tray in the space of 40 mins. I made him disinfect and wash each of them after use.

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

It's easier to hate people

I'm having one of those days where social interaction just makes me angry. Which is not good as I'm off to my knitting group shortly but that tends to relax me so it shouldn't be too much of a worry. I just can't help being really short with people today- I'm being very intolerant. Not to the point where I'm being a bitch I don't think, I'm just not suffering fools today. It is somewhat liberating to not be beholden to others for once. I think that this is all prompted by meeting someone who I consider to fall into the categories of 'slightly slimy', 'ingrate' and 'incompetent'. It's a good enough trio to annoy me as none of these personality traits are completely fixed in the person due to the lower levels at which they can be seen. I just keep getting this feeling that I
a) want to smack them way down to the ground and then
b) wash myself with some kind of caustic soap afterwards.

To try and dispel these thoughts I shall now go and flex my SUPERPOWERS (rar!!!) on the Superheroes app on Facebook. Beating up nameless faces with moves such as 'make the front of X's knickers wet', 'add toxic mushrooms to X's food' and 'phase through X and stop their heart' is really quite satisfying :p

Monday, 21 April 2008

Vegetable goodness

I need compost. Lots of compost. And when I have my compost I shall plant my seeds and they shall grow and grow and grow and I shall have large quantities of vegetably goodness to munch on this summer. Mmmmmm, vegetables.
The husband and I spent yesterday prepping the ground, shifting stuff around in the back garden and mowing the lawn. I had meant to plant all my seeds out then but I hadn't realised that I had no compost left. D'oh.
But never fear- I shall be away to the gardening center sometime this week and the seeds will soon be tucked up snuggly in their little pots. Not long after I expect them to be yawning and stretching themselves out, ready for a summers worth of sunshine.
My leeks and onions are already coming through though the leeks are only about a centimetre tall at the moment. The onions are much further on and are about 7 centimetres tall despite being planted at the same time. By the end of this week I will also have carrots, sweetcorn, lettuce, tomatoes, parsnips and gourds on the go. After the weekend I will have my rain barrel installed so that my pumpkins will grow extra big this summer and I won't have to worry about wasting water. After that I shall turn my thoughts to a compost heap though we don't really have anywhere to put a compost heap so I might get myself a 'womery' (for growing worms) instead. With a little luck I will manage to grow some edible goodness this summer though I am feeling that I have no idea what I am doing and that if I get anything at all it will be an absolute miracle. Green fingers need to be grown first me thinks.

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Look it gets worse!

Got up this morning and the lump on my arm has gotten even bigger!! Didn't sleep to well because it was burning so much so decided that maybe it was time to go and get some drugs to deal with it. So I stopped off at a pharmacy on the way into work and showed it to the pharmacist so that they could give me the correct antihistamines. The lady behind the counter gave me a horrified look and told me to visit the doctors...
So off to the doctors I went who also looked at it in a slightly horrified way but seemed to think that it was just a rather strong reaction on my part rather than any kind of infection. This didn't stop her from prescribing the third course of antibiotics I have had in a month- just in case. I also got a note to take with me to the chemists that told me the kind of antihistamines that I needed to find (no point prescribing these as it made it more expensive). I have personally prescribed myself some painkillers to go with my other tablets so once again, I rattle when I walk. At least it is not so itchy at the moment. When I got up this morning it was driving me crazy and I could have scratched the skin right off of my arm whilst maintaining a huge smile the whole time. Now I'm in work it is proving to be annoying in another way- the arm is so swollen that I can't hold it against my body properly or lift anything with my right hand. It's okay if I can rest my arm on the desk as it holds the lump away from my body but when walking around I have to do a terminator impression and hold my guns away from my body. Makes me look angry...grrr!

Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Wasp sting

Not sure how well the photo will come out but what you should be able to see is a picture of the aftermath of me being stung by a queen wasp yesterday evening. It doesn't hurt as much as it did then but the poison has spread out during the day and it now looks much more impressive. It has two areas to it- the inner bit is really hard and bright red and is the bit that hurts the most. Its really hot to the touch. The patch around it is a lighter red and not so swollen but it marks the extent of the poison where it has spread through my arm. I'm quite impressed that it has spread down my arm towards the elbow rather than up. I think that that would have been worse as I'm sure the lymphatic glands would have gotten all swollen as well which really is quite painful.
Had to tweak the colours the bit to make it show but its not too far off the truth. It's just starting to get itchy like mosquito bites do. That will annoy me!

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

I'm back

and busy as hell! We arrived back in the county late Sunday evening and since then its been one long run of job after job after job. I have finally manged to find a minute or two to catch up with other things so I shall give you a brief summary (and I mean brief) of what I've been up to over the last week or so.

Sat 5th: Drove from Oxford to Gairloch. We left at 6:30am and arrived at the lighthouse where we were staying at 10pm. We met the snow at Perth, stopped off at the New Lanark Woollen Mill and got rained on in Inverness.

Sun 6th: Spent the day in Gairloch, in the pub with our friends and their wee one (the main reason for travelling all that way- to meet the new person) and then crawled into the local backpackers hostel.

Mon 7th: Spent the morning hanging out and recovering from the day before, before heading off to the Isle of Skye. We had booked our own little cottage for the evening where we managed to beat the Jigsaw puzzle challenge. Rock on!

Tues 8th: Potter around Skye. Stopped off at Shilsadair wool shop and spent LARGE quantities of money on beautiful wool. We then headed off to Creanlarich where a grumpy Scottish lady let us stay in one of her wooden wigwams. But only after sniffing at us.

Wed 9th: Drove to Glasgow, dropped the best friend off at the train station and then beetled off to Prestwick to see the parents-in-law.

We were then in Prestwick until Sunday, catching up with friends and family and generally having a good time. I took lots of lovely photographs, the best of which I shall put up on my blog and add in all the funny stories for you. But seeing as all my pictures are on film it might take me a while to do.

Friday, 4 April 2008

Off on my holidays

As from tomorrow I am off to Scotland for a week so there will be a short pause before service can be resumed again. I am taking my camera with me however so expect lots of news and photographs of my trip to Gairloch and the Isle of Skye when I get back. Am really excited about going despite the 12 hour drive that we have tomorrow to get to Gairloch. Ouch!

Remote controlled dragonfly

Just arrived this morning: 1 remote controlled dragonfly! It's for the new displays at work but of course we HAD to give it a go to make sure that it worked. So I had a little play in department but all I managed to work out was that there wasn't enough turning room for it to work properly. Had nothing to do with my inability to work the controls nonononononono. But then the boss came back, took one look at it and decided that we should go and play with it out on the lawn in front of our building. We had a few difficulties at first as it kept nose-diving every time we launched it as it was a bit too windy outside for the model but we discovered that if we chucked it up really high then we could normally get it to take and we both managed to get one really long good flight out of it before the batteries ran out. Awesome. I nearly got it stuck in a tree on my go, and the boss nearly wedged it on the roof of the building after one particularly strong gust lifted it up really high. I'm not sure how much control we had over it because of the wind. The flapping wings did more to keep it up than give it any directional control but it was good fun nonetheless. I think if we manage to get a day when the air is really still it will work beautifully. Of course are all itching to try it out in the central courtyard of the museum but as I pointed out, we would have no deniability if we got it wedged in the t-rex - no one in the museum would even hesitate over pointing a finger at our department for a second ;)

Thursday, 3 April 2008

Punk Knits

For some reason I never checked out the Punk Knits website before- Oh my god! what have I been missing out on. Was massively chuffed to find out that they had their skull knitting needles back in stock. I shall be ordering myself, and others I suspect, a pair as soon as I possibly can. I got to looking them up after browsing through flickr and coming across this photo of cthulhu knitting! It's amazing the things that you can find on the web....

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

E-bay sucked my life away

Argh! Only meant to 'pop' onto e-bay to leave feedback for some stuff that I bought for my mum and I ended up spending almost my entire lunch break on there. I just had to forcibly remove myself by hitting random link buttons off of the toolbar in order to remove those oh-so tempting lists from my eyes. I'm sure that I'm not the only one who get sucked in and I'm equally as sure that I'm not the only one who starts out with all the best intentions (I'll just check this out and then do something else....) which does make me feel better I have to say. This time I got caught out looking at ball winders. One of the ladies at my knitting group had bought hers along last night and I can't believe how amazing they are! I always had plans to get one at some point in the vaguely distant future but hadn't ever really looked into it before. Now its top of my hit list. The idea of having centre pull balls of wool to knit from is just too much to bear- imagine how wonderful that would be (if you can. I'm not sure the non-knitters among you will appreciate it at all). It would almost be as marvelous as pre-sliced bread. Better in fact as so far I've been knitting from the equivalent of an unsliced loaf for years.
Anyway, apologies once again for the knitting orientated talk. It wasn't really my intention ot always talk about knitting but I don't have that many outlets for my enthusiasm so you'll just have to bear with me. Which reminds me- you all HAVE to check out this website. This lady makes the BEST knitted toys EVER!!! I am deeply awed.
Eeek, have slipped back to knitting again. The only other things that I can think to talk about right now are kittens and insects and I'm not sure how much of an improvement either of those subjects might be. Did find some specimens collected by Darwin yesterday that where thought to be lost. They appear to be squishy larvae so not all that overwhelming really.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

So long

Can't believe that I have been away from y'all for so long! Well, I have a good reason. Come the long weekend that we had for Easter I was struck down and condemned to illness for the next two weeks. I have been suffering with a kidney infection- and I mean suffering. Can't believe how much it hurts! Or how crippling it is . The doctor put me on some hardcore antibiotics which has now started to make a difference (ah! sweet relief) but last week was mainly spent lying in bed going ow, snoozing or reading a book. Even getting up and walking around proved to be somewhat of a problem. So I ended up stuck in the house on my own. The kittens kept me company for a bit but all they really wanted to do was run around in the garden. I think they figured that seeing as how I was at home then they should be let out to enjoy the sunshine. So I let them out and then got left on my own :( Every now and again one of them would pop through the cat flap to make sure that I hadn't disappeared but even then they were not exactly great conversationalists. I didn't even get much knitting done!!! as it required me to sit upright and that hurt far too much. All that I managed to make was a knitted bunny which looks much more complicated than it actually is- all you have to do is make a square of knitting and then sew in up in a particular way. The finished item is particularly cute though! (I know, I know- I said that I wouldn't start anything new for a bit but I couldn't coupe with anything that involved complicated patterns . As it was I didn't even manage to follow the directions for this pattern all that well as I knitted my square in garter stitch instead of stocking stitch. Hence the funny ribbing on my bunny!)