I haven’t seen you for ages……….

blue skyAnother peculiar thing about blogging and having a few years under your belt, is the strangeness of people you may have known a long time ago bumping into your blog the day you are telling a story about the awful flatulence you are experiencing at the moment or a picture of yourself in a face mask. It is a bit like they might be  arriving at a party just after the last bottle of wine has been finished and every one has done with the life stories and can tell stupid jokes as the blogging, certainly daily  is a bit like a ‘happening’ and if someone discovers you after a long absence they are not going to scroll through every post especially when you have nearly 350 posts, nor would you ever imagine they would. I wonder what they must think! Funny, but now I am of an age when I do not really care,  she thanks the Lord!  I have mixed emotions about people who contact me out of the blue after  decades. Sometimes it is so lovely as it  can be easy to lost touch with someone you had a great connection with, sometimes it makes really no sense at all, and sometimes it dredges up old emotions  you would really rather not have.  I am definitely one for a bit of fate and serendi p.diddy and all that hippy stuff   ( please don’t tell)…so I will continue to be open and embrace the long lost. My mate CL says that friendships are for a reason or a season, and that when they don’t last it’s ok, as they may have been really amazing for that short time and something great came out of them …oh god I am whittering….stop me someone!

It is a gorgeous blue day today. Popped over to the  local(!) Royal Mail this morning, (40 minute round trip by foot) everyone’s worst nightmare, the red card through the letterbox, they even had it on my favourite comedy show Mongrels -BBC 3…check it out ….  I had to pick up something really boring that was too big to get through the letter box. I  noticed that the marvellous Christmas garden of lights nearby is up! I shall go and take photos when it is dark.

So back to work. I am trying to engrave ( which basically mean to make tidy and legible )  a bunch of my  a capella folk arrangements for a book. Wasting hours deciding on a good font and the cover mostly. I am trying to do it all myself as I have lost faith in music publishers…anyone out there want to restore my faith? Silence….. Very time consuming, especially as my middle name is ‘messy’.

SONG OF THE DAY – Ed Sheeran  -You need me I dont need you

Best Video I have seen for ages…Ed is the red head (it’s in black and white ha ha ha) on the

Day 333 -This is our Heyday

Yup…ghasp…I have been blogging for 333 continuous days – I cannot quite believe it!  Some days it is easy, some days it is a bit trickier. I met a dear  friend in the street who  has taken the time to have a look at my blog and laughed about the fact that I have resorted to taking pictures of the lift at the local underground station. I actually like the lift and feel it needs a photo, and what may be mundane and ordinary to one person is new and fresh to another. We agreed on that. So moving on…what about today, day 333?    (32 days left of the year which means very few days left until Christmad  (I spelled it wrong and then decided it looked better)

Ten years ago today George Harrison died at the age of 58, which is really no age at all. Also another younger musician called Mic Christopher also died, he was 32. I often wonder about the scenario when two  people die on the same day and them meeting at the queue for the ticket machine at the  pearly gates and  them having a little chat.  ‘Oh hello, what brings you here today, do you have any change for the machine ?’…. I always wondered what Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett-Major would have chatted about on the same day June 2009, and my Uncle John and Amy Winehouse on the same day in July 2011, who would have got on like a house on fire. I love the idea that a big celeb may stand at the ticket machine next to someone really ordinary and rather extraordinary, as face it kids, one thing we all have in common is, we are born and we are gonna die.

There was a very moving film on the TV the other week about George Harrison’s life directed by Martin Scorsese. One thing he did a lot of was mediate and really try to feel the moment of his death. I started reading about GH and then got distracted by his musical link with the wonderful Roy Orbison who was in the The Traveling Wilburys for a brief spell before  Roy Orbison sadly died at the age of 52 of a heart attack. Roy has the same birthday as me and was the same age as I am now when he died, and I still feel like I am no age at all……at the time he died I thought he was old!

Ah another morbid little post..well is was all so pucker and dandy for the last few days the downward slope was inevitable. Hopefully  soon I shall rise from the ashes like a phoenix reborn, shedding light and good news on us all.

SONG OF THE DAY – Mic Christopher -Heyday

‘And this is our heyday baby
And we’re not gonna be afraid to shout
‘Cause we can make our heyday last forever
And ain’t that what it’s all about’

Right On!

It’s all about the trees…and other stuff

This week is National Tree Week and this year is International Year of the Tree. I have been a bit involved with wood the last couple of days so it seemed apt to mention. The issue of deforestation round the world does need to continue to be highlighted. There! Highlighted.

A fellow blogger who I subscribe to sent out a post today about how many slaves we all have working for us …and we do without even realising it. His report states that there are more slaves  (27 million) in the world doing work and not being paid than at any other time and we all have slaves, depending on how we live our lives…It seems I have 39 slaves working for me, which is because I have clothes and gadgets, the man who sent me the blog had 62 slaves. It would do no harm to do the survey and think about all the  random objects we have in our life (some sparkles in make-up is made by children) that are either put there by children or slaves. Definite serious food for thought …… click here to read

All a bit solemn today. I think I have Mondayitis. Christmas is not a specially favourite time of mine, have to make a real effort to keep it together and not end up in a hole, particularly once all the lovely songs stop.  Lots of things come up for folks at Christmas, especially people on their own, with money problems or with particularly dysfunctional familes. I love the weather and the bunkering down, and the fact it makes sense to spend a lot of time in the kitchen, if just to keep warm, and the fact that in a matter of weeks the darkest day is over and it starts to get lighter again. It really is important to make an effort to LIGHTEN UP in every way possible, with candles and sparkly lights and any jolly things.  I have a particularly good book on my desk at the moment, called ‘shit happens so get over it’….A silly coffee table book, or perhaps one to put next to the toilet…so today’s quote from the book to ponder on is this…..

‘ To succeed in life, you need three things, a wishbone, a backbone and a funny bone.’ -Reba McEntire

SONG OF THE DAY – Rabbit in Your Rucksack – Gitika

I have reloaded it on youtube and the quality is now far superior!

The Spoon Carving Workshop was a Triumph!

Yes…Mr. P.  absolutely loved his birthday surprise. I went back to pick him up at the end of his workshop to find Mr P., Mr  A. and  Mr G. all carving away the most beautiful spoons with Barn the Spoon ( read the article by clicking on his name) with the Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park out the window.

I have to say I quite fancied doing a bit of spoon carving myself. Mr G. and  Mr A. were both quite experienced carvers, and had their own tools and their spoon carving was rather good, but I can imagine Mr. P. could get good too as it is just the sort of thing he likes do, especially all that whittling..sorry carving. During the day they learned all the health and safety ways of holding all the correct tools, cut the wood outside for the spoon with axe and then did the carving with other interesting tools ( the lovely  Mr G. gave Mr P. a special tool he had hand made, so Mr P. could carry on carving at home…). It is well worth looking at some spoon carving round and about…..( I hear some people biting their arms off..spoon carving! rather eat glass…. each to their own eh?).

We all went and had some food in a Lebanese place in Mile End  called The Orange Room and got the 277 bus back to Highbury and Islington, then managed to leg it up the Holloway Road home just before the Arsenal fans poured out of the Emirates stadium.

Today more people are doing another day of spooning, which is for more experienced carvers. Mr P. is off to his community allotment/garden and I really should do some guitar practice. The roast chicken is in the oven and a couple of mates are popping by to help us eat it on their way home from Hampstead Heath. Wow! it sounds like someone else’s life. Did I step into a shiny magazine just for a moment? Just for a moment, all is calm and  all is bright.  I cannot quite believe it is nearly blinking December and the days are just racing by! It is blue skies and  a peachy little chill outside. Happy Days.

SONG OF THE DAY -Led Zeppelin -Kashmir

Yup every so often I like a bit of old Led, Zep and this is my favourite…crank it up kids. x

Photos of the Day – Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park

I dropped Mr P. off there this morning for his birthday surprise which is a spoon carving workshop with Barn the Spoon in the Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park! An old cemetery – 35 acres…breath taking…if you dig old cemeterys, which I do!

I  tramped round it for about an hour, and in that time saw a mere handful of people walking their dogs. I took loads of photos. Well worth a visit. Another of those little havens in London. I shall have to see how the spoon carving workshop went down with Mr P.  I did manage to  keep it a surprise for the last 2 weeks, right  until we got there.  The people already there even greeted him with ‘Hi and welcome to the dance workshop!” Surprises can be a bit of a risk. Mr P. told me this week his worst idea of a surprise would have been a pampering day or a paint balling session….phew…lucky escape there then. I shall let you know how he got on tomorrow.

SONG OF THE DAY – Wooden it be Nice -The Beech Boys

As it is all about wood today, this was the first song that came into my head (sorry).

This is Not a Diary….

… but sometimes it feels like one. I think I am having a sort of diary-ish sort of time, and that is ok. Here  I sit, accompanied by the drilling of  the TV presenter’s new basement being built and the humming of my computer speaker, still wondering about doing a blog everyday for 2011. It has been an extraordinary process. Some days I have absolutely no idea what I am going to write, and if I think of the amount of hours I have spent over the last 11 months,  correcting my dreadful spelling, well it is staggering and amazing. So some pictures and musings from yesterday, which was another action packed day in then life of. I went to Edgware in the morning and got back on an empty train, again. It did not stay that way  for long, and by about Colindale it was half full. A man felt the need to make me take my shopping off the seat next to me so he could sit right up close, although there were loads of empty areas in the carriage, and then promptly put all his luggage on the empty seat next to him and  got his smelly fish paste sandwiches out, at which point I took a little stroll down the carriage with my big rucksack and shopping bags. There are some strange people about…..

I went home, cooked a large lamb stew, which should have lasted for a couple of days, but somehow got completely polished off by the end of the evening. I took a train to Bletchley to look at the MK Dons football stadium, in the dark, which was fun. This is where the  Milton Keynes Half-Time Choir (still time to join!) will be  singing so I  had a little yodel in the empty stadium, and saw where our allotted seats were…. I then went to  The Community Centre in Wolverton, which is part of Milton Keynes, but  an older part of town where they used to build trains, to have a practice with some of the lovely people who are going to sing in the stadium. We had a practice last week and this week, to break the ice of the piece which is a 4 part acapella medley of  ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone, and All You Need is Love” …it is going to be great, and I have done practice downloads so people can still join the project and listen to the downloads from the The Stables website. The songs sound a lot better with a massed choir than just me singing them as a practice piece. They sounded amazing last night, I can’t wait to hear them all together on the 10th December. I got a late train back the Euston and saw this train in the station and thought how much fun it would be to go on the sleeper and end up in Scotland in the morning.

A funny moment on the tube on the way home. I had tried to phone Mr P. on my way home and got no reply on either the home line or the mobile, and I started to worry and  my vivid imagination concocted a scenario of me finding  him dead at the  bottom of a ladder or something as mundane ( vivid imagination can be useful but deeply tragic sometimes). I started to descend a downward slope, thinking about how I am having to get used to being an old lady, as my face has moved south so quickly over the last little while that I hardly recognise myself, and now would also be partnerless.  I sat there surrounded by a full tube of people almost in tears, when a young black man at the other end of the carriage started shouting at me. He was wearing his jaunty pork pie hat and  I recognised him, as he spends most of his life smiling outside the local shop with a guitar in one hand and possibly a can of beer in his other. He suddenly shouted down the carriage at me ‘hey you in the hat!…do you like Bob Marley?’ I nodded and at that moment  got off the tube (it was my stop) I walked along the carriage toward where he was standing  at his open door and he said to me something along the lines of that phrase…’if I was a few years younger..you would be the girl for me, but I am on the rebound at the moment’ and the doors shut… it made me howl with laughter as he must be 15 years younger than me and I am feeling 15 years older than I am… I know he is a bit mad..nice mad, possibly a bit blinded by my funky hat. It was just a really funny little thing to happen when I was sitting on the tube, in my mind gearing myself up to  being a widow and behaving with  the appropriate grace I feel I should have when I lose Mr P. …talk about changing the mood…….

I got out of the tube, rang home again and Mr P. had reappeared as if by magic. Ha ha . He’d been to the local pub to meet his new ‘Green’ Friends and forgot his mobile…..

SONG OF THE DAY I Shot the Sheriff -Bob Marley

Live at the Rainbow -major regret in my life is that I never got to this venue that I have walked past thousands of time…since its closure. And major regret that I never saw Bob Marley live…what a magnificent man and what a band! A little quote from Wiki ” Marley faced questions about his own racial identity throughout his life. Although Marley recognised his mixed ancestry, throughout his life and because of his beliefs, he self-identified as a black African He once reflected:

I don’t have prejudice against meself. My father was a white and my mother was black. Them call me half-caste or whatever. Me don’t dip on nobody’s side. Me don’t dip on the black man’s side nor the white man’s side. Me dip on God’s side, the one who create me and cause me to come from black and white’

His fathers roots where from Essex which makes me very happy to think that I could also be blood related to Bob. Long shot I know but …would that not be so cool? So Cool…yes

Photos of the Day – Tufnell Park Road Station

I cannot believe that at 6pm on a Tuesday night, middle of blinking rush hour….. I was the only person on the platform, and the only person in the lift at Tufnell Park  Tube. If you do not know where Tufnell Park Underground is, it’s here, very near the centre of the Metropolis.

Where was everyone? I got off a crowded tube, but by the time I had sauntered  off the last carriage, along the platform, took a photo of the empty platform, everyone had rushed up to the surface.

I had the lift to myself too. Rare in a city of  8 million do you get a whole underground station to yourself…it is a strangely good feeling, as sometimes I find sharing MY local underground station with thousands and thousands of other locals ….well, the whole, having to share a  crowded carriage at rush hour, when you might as well be trying to get into a wardrobe jam packed with people…. I am sure most Londoners would agree, that the sharing the space is often very very aggravating.  Ups and downs eh? Oh and here is a selection of the posters dotted around the walls of my local station this week.

SONG OF THE DAY – Bowie and Queen – Under Pressure

The beginning of the video is the key to my choice today.