Saturday, 30 October 2010

Over a Cup of Tea

Yesterday I wrote a letter to my best friend and sent it first class so that she would receive it this morning. 

We were very synchronised as, this morning, I received a letter from Dearest Friend herself, and a small gift: a teapot shaped pouch with a teabag inside, and these words:

I wish that I could sit with you
As I really love to do.
But brew yourself a cup of tea
I'll think of you, and
You'll think of me. 

So now I am sitting here with my cup of tea, thinking of her, and all my loved ones scattered across the world. And wishing I could be with you all, drinking tea and drinking in your words. How kind you all are to care for me. How glad I am to be within your social spheres on one level or another. As Yoko Ono said:

'The odds of meeting in this life are so great that every meeting is like a miracle.'

Friday, 29 October 2010

Trying Not to Cry

I'm tired. I haven't had the best of days. I've worked 48 hours in the last  week. My fiancĂ© has been away on holiday since Saturday and for the last week I've been isolated from all my loved ones. And now I've found out his holiday has been extended by an extra day so, because I'm working the whole of Sunday, I won't see him again until Monday, and then only for limited time due to work.

Is it any surprise that I'm trying not to cry?

Car Trouble

I may have reached the point where I no longer dread going out in the car (even enjoy being the one behind the wheel) but there are still times when I wish I didn’t drive.

I’ve just this week started driving the work vehicle (a Ford Mondeo if you’re interested) and it’s taken a bit of getting used to as it’s so much bigger than the car Spud and I own. My colleagues sometimes refer to it as the “tank” because it’s very heavy. It is, however, not unpleasant to drive. It’s just the manoeuvring that’s a bit of a nightmare!

However, being the designated driver can sometimes be a disadvantage. Not many of my colleagues can drive, so when a driver is on they normally become taxi driver for the entirety of the shift. I have never wanted to be a taxi driver. I have had to quickly get over my discomfort of driving unaccompanied along unfamiliar roads, as this is something, as driver, I’m expected to do (although my colleagues have been very helpful, and even written down directions for me).

Spud and I have had issues with our own car too. A few weeks ago I parked my car on the road outside my house (so much easier than having to reverse out of the driveway at an awkward angle) and the next morning I found that someone had knocked into my wing mirror and smashed the glass! Spud and I suspect that it may not have been an accident as there is a strange, faint line across the window and some of the paint work, as though someone gave our wing mirror a good whacking with a stick! We also noticed that the same thing had happened to the next car down.

So ever since that incident I have parked on the drive. However, only a week or so later I did exactly what I feared I would do, and accidentally scraped the car on the wall as I was reversing off the drive! Thankfully, the scrape is only on the bumper, but I gave myself quite a hard time about it! So Spud and I may have to get a few repairs done, and they will naturally come at a cost. 

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

These Quotes Describe Me

But in the rest of her life she was surprisingly clumsy and unsure... She would trip over her feet if she thought she was being watched... She found it an ordeal to be in the street, walking towards a friend from a distance. And whenever she was anxious or too self-conscious her hand would rise repeatedly to her forehead to brush away an imaginary strand of hair, a gentle, fluttering motion that would continue long after the source of stress had vanished

From On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan

I worried so much about how I looked and whether I was doing things right, I felt half the time I was impersonating a girl instead of actually being one

From The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

How literature can capture our feelings and personalities from time to time!

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


Tomorrow I will wear my hair in plaits. I will take the day as it comes and rest wherever I can. I will not anticipate the days ahead but live in the present for a change. And hopefully tomorrow will be so much better than today (which was rubbish!)

For now I will go to bed and sleep, so that I can start afresh tomorrow. 

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Faraway Friend

Tonight I would like to thank my faraway friend. 

I was feeling rather rundown and lonely, but when I returned home a package was waiting for me on my bed, courtesy of my faraway friend. It contained the most novel notelet set I have ever seen, quaint and lovely, all the way from Italy. 

And a note written in her hand. Her words meant so much to me. 

It was like she knew how I was feeling. Her timing was perfect. 

She has always been so sweet and kind, generous and lovely to me. She can never know how grateful I am to be considered her friend.

I think she is my guardian angel. 

Sorry about my prolonged absence, my dears. I will write again soon. I miss you all from the very bottom of my heart.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Our Autumn Day

In my dream we had the whole day ahead of us to do as we pleased. I wore my stripy scarf and we packed a picnic basket full of food. We spread a worn blanket across a patch of grass overlooking the water. 

In reality we had just a couple of hours to spare before I left to work a seven hour shift. We didn't pack a picnic and I wore my glasses because my eyes were tired (they weren't a part of the original fantasy). 

The first thing you said to me this morning was 'you're beautiful' and I loved you for that. Your eyes barely left me the whole time we were together. We drove to the proposed spot and went for a walk by the water. I didn't recognise the visitor centre, which was suspended over the water - surely I would have remembered it if I'd been there before! We gazed across the water from the viewing platform, watching the geese and swans through binoculars, but the only thing I noticed was your arm around my waist. Afterwards we went to the coffee shop where we drank local apple juice, and ate cake and shortbread. We sat outside in the autumn sunshine, and you still had your arm around me, your head resting on my shoulder. 

I will always remember the beauty of that day, the blue sky and the sunshine reflected in the water; the sweet apple juice on my tongue and exchanging bites of cake; the feel of your protective arm across my shoulders. But most of all I will always remember the way you said 'I love you' so suddenly that it surprised me. 

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

One for the Writers

Last week, after a trip to the supermarket, Spud came over and presented me with a pot plant. When I asked him why, he explained that it was to boost my creativity. Allow me to explain. In his book, :59 Seconds, Professor Richard Wiseman writes 'A significant amount of research has examined the effects of the natural environment on people's thinking and behaviour. The work shows that even a small amount of shrubbery can have a surprisingly large impact on making the world a better place... In the same way that greenery seems to reduce antisocial behaviour, so it also seems to make people more creative... Time and again, the researchers discovered that the addition of the pot plant enhanced people's creativity' (:59 Seconds, Pages 129-31). 

Unfortunately I haven't yet had the opportunity to prove this theory for myself because this last week has been my busiest yet and I haven't had time to write. I have never had much success with pot plants, so I hope that mine will still be alive when I get the opportunity to write again!

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

First Day

'You take a deep breath and walk through the doors 
It's the morning of your very first day'

Taylor Swift - Fifteen

You may like to know that I survived my first day at work, but if I believed my employers incapable of any further cock ups then I was very wrong. Do you remember, I mentioned the other day that they rang and changed the location for my induction? Well, they changed it again, but it was too late for them to notify me! I went where they told me to go, and then had to cross the city to the original location. 

Luckily, from then on, things went smoothly. I've got my hours for the week, and I'm fairly pleased with them. I've also met the girls I will be supporting, and I went to the gym with two of them! They are more capable than the students I was supporting in my last post, so there will be different challenges along the way. I think I am going to enjoy working there, but I will still be looking for something more suitable to my circumstances as the shifts are long (sometimes up to 13 hours) and I'm not sure that this is the sort of thing I want to do long term. 

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Mobile Broadband

With my start date approaching, I finally got mobile broadband last week. Spud did some research for me and helped me to select the best offer. Because we have an Orange phone for our car, I was able to get an eighteen month contract through Orange – 500MB a month for £5 a month. If I find I need more than that then I can upgrade to 1.5MB for £10 a month. 

Mobile broadband isn’t that great, but it’s better than nothing. I had a few problems to begin with as every time I connected to the internet, some application seemed to be eating into my usage. Since Spud fiddled about with my laptop it’s been better, but I’ve found certain websites (particularly blogs) require such a high usage that I will have to go to the library to view these, which is a bit annoying. 

At least it’s only a temporary thing. A proper internet connection is one of the many things I can look forward to in a year and ten months time (or 673 days, but who’s counting? Lol)

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Last Day of Freedom

Tomorrow is my last day of freedom after nearly four and a half months out of work. I keep wondering to myself where the time went, not that I feel it’s gone to waste. I’m one of these people who can’t stand to be idle. I cram so many things into my day that there’s hardly a moment to spare. Whenever I’ve had a moment to myself I either remember something else that needs to be done, or I’m too tired to enjoy it so I go to bed (last night, for example). 

Since completing my degree I’ve moved 300 miles away from home, applied for 28 jobs, attended five interviews, and visited the job centre more times than I can count. Aside from all that I’ve rewritten 70 pages of my novel to a standard I’m proud of, read and enjoyed countless books I’ve wanted to read for a long time, attended church weekly, become a leader at Spud’s Boys Brigade company, and best of all spent time with Spud nearly everyday. That’s where all the time has gone!

I don’t hold out much hope for my new job. If I’m honest, it’s not the job I wanted in the first place. You wouldn’t believe how disorganised and unprofessional my new employer has been, and I haven’t even started yet! I have been messed about so much that I don’t perceive it as a good omen. Even today I received a phone call informing that the location for my induction has now changed. 

I also feel as though I am stepping into the unknown. I don’t know anything about the sort of people I’ll be working with, although having worked in care previously I don’t think I’ll be too surprised. I know I have a full time contract that equates to 35 hours a week (plus sleep-ins), but I know nothing about the shift pattern or rota. I don’t know how long my induction will last, or how long I’ll be in work on Monday. They have told me virtually nothing! Hopefully I’ll have some of my questions answered when I start my induction on Monday, after being kept in suspense for nearly two months.