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Wednesday, December 21, 2016

It's About Time

All those times I slept for 10+ hours at night, I smugly banked them. I knew one day that I would be thankful. I didn't need to see the Great Eclipse of 2000 and whenever. I am also grateful for the fact that I have not wiled hours away watching things like Grease and the LOFT trilogy, or anything else that is deemed as a "must see". I will, however, spend the length of time it takes to watch a film trawling the internet looking for the most obscure/disturbing/enlightening film I can find only to realise that I have no time to wetch it.

But time is such an illusion and so the waste of it is purely subjective. The ways in which I have chosen to "waste" time have been:

Waiting - mostly for transport. I have been also known to wait for lost luggage, technicians, treehouses and soulmates
Sleeping - for me, the nectar of the Gods, the one true escape from reality
Befriending animals - from potentially rabid dogs in Thailand to wee tired and hungry wasps called Julien...One for all and all for One
Getting to Know Myself - not exactly a waste of time but a lot of time has been devoted to it and sometimes the process of getting to know oneself involves a whole lot of nothing in particular, or waiting for transport.

Time, and our use of it, really is matter of perspective. Some people don't have time to wait in queues, or talk to random strangers in the street. Some people think time is money. Time is a construct and it has been constructed to keep us within the regimented timetables ascribed to us by someone else. This is why bosses say "You're on my time now". When I worked in Thailand, they operated in Thai Time, meaning things would get done but only after food had been consumed, naps were taken and it was remembered whatever it was that needed to be done in the first place.

Time is a matter of consequence, and some believe that matter can travel through time. But that's a tricky buisness to be involved in and one that I may or may not get round to blogging about.

Friday, December 16, 2016

GCDCs Debut

I feel like today is a lucky day for me. I had looked forward to the year 2016 because my fascination with the number 216 made me hopeful that it would be a good year for me. It wasn't that awesome but it wasn't bloody awful either. I think the general consensus, however, is that 2016 has been a pretty shitty year all around the world. Oh, and the only reason this year wasn't bloody awful is because I moved back home at just the right time. I said to moms that I really didn't think I would have coped living in the flat, struggling with everything on my own.

I have been much too drained to keep up any kind of online presence. I have one more week of mentalness and then a relaxing 3 day break to look forward to. I've almost made it. This is the very pinnacle of surfing the blowhole. Last week I hit a brick wall. Everything seemed bleak. The week before that I overthought myself into a frenzy that I think too much to become a counsellor. You can think yourself round in circles like a dog chasing it's tail. Just as fruitless though a lot less fun. And with confidence in tatters as usual I mustered another little last ounce of strength. I used it to sing a few songs at Uncle T's open mic night. Gus helped. He helped a lot by playing the wrong chords which resulted in us laughing which kinda made people interested. We played to a small but friendly and supportive crowd who were full of compliments afterwards.

Almost just as exciting as that, and a big part of the reason why I feel today is a lucky day, my new Irish passport arrived which means I can think about getting a small break away somewhere. It's great being so easily pleased :)

Friday, November 25, 2016

Boy Child Wonder Dog

I came home today to discover that Ziggy has been writing a draft for the Palace:


Hannah wakes up for work super early. She faffs around downstairs then she comes back up to do her hair. This is when I retreat beneath the blankets. I don't like the stuff she sprays in her hair. She doesn't do it every morning but I am like Pavlov's dog and as soon as I see her sitting in the 'getting ready' spot I dive under. I sleep until I hear Granny getting up. I stir but I decide it's still too early. When I hear Bert getting up I know the day is beginning. I go downstairs. Granny lets me and the other dogs out. She sometimes shouts "Ev" as she does this. Since granny and I are highly attuned I know this is short for "Everybody out!".

I do my buisness and then wait at the door for someone to let me in. I go for my second snooze of the day, sometimes on the sofa, sometimes back in bed. Visitors may come and I am compelled to bark and greet them excitedly. Eventually, Hannah comes home. I get very excited to see her and a little cross at all the others dogs crowding round her. I am also reminded, when Hannah arrives, that I have much coveted rawhide sticks that my BFF Gus brought round. I go into territorial mode. I may bark and worry at things below the sofa just to let Hannah know that she has been missed by me and I have all this awesome stuff to show her how well I can chew and guard and so on, so forth and suchlike.

Then Hannah goes upstairs to study. I go for my third snooze of the day. She works real hard with frequent breaks to talk to me and tell me she loves and how handsome I am. I sigh contentedly. Dinner comes a few hours later and I like to hang out with Granny in the kitchen for an hour just in case I get a treat. Granny doesn't even make me do tricks for them.

I often go to bed with Hannah but I may be up and down like a yoyo. Things that will stir me are; the clattering of pots and pans - this could potentially mean Granny is cooking, visitors calling - it's like a game of "who's it going to be?" and it pretty much doesn't matter who it's going to be because I'll get some kind of pat on the head. I forgot to mention, I have taken to going out in the evening and barking incessantly for at least 20 minutes. It just feels good to let the whole countryside know that I'm here and I've got all this rawhide and nobody's getting any!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Yes I'm Going to Cry

I re-sat my theory test on Wednesday as it had expired. I passed so that was a relief. I recorded 2 sessions with 2 different clients and that was also a relief as I have a deadline for that piece of work looming. So When I went to sleep on Wednesday night my body and mind must have relaxed and I fell into such a deep sleep that I slept through 3 alarms. I made it into work on time but I was drained. A work colleague told me I looked awful and I went to the toilets and cried. This has been a problem for me for a while. Crying when I really don't want to be. Hence; no more tears on the floor for the girl who lives in her coat.

It seemed to be correlating with my monthly howl at the moon cycle so I went on the pill to see if I could fool my body into thinking it was pregnant. I tried it out for a month and it made me feel worse in the long run. The trial and error rule applies to everything and I'm left now with the option of just accepting I'm going to be a big weepy, emotional wet blanket for at least one day of the month. So what! Yes I am going to cry because that bull looked so happy when it was freed, yes I'm going to cry when I spend all day looking at babies and am reminded that I don't have any, yes, I'm going to cry when I think about how much I love Ziggy, yes I'm going to cry when one of the bad girls from the Bad Girls Club is crying. I'm going to cry when I feel like crying and I'm going to stop trying to control these emotions that are embarassing and cumbersome.

And while I let those emotions flow freely within me and without me, then there is room for the happiness to flow within me and without me. Moms is sorting her computing room out this week so we can light fires and make it cosy. I need to seek out the beauty and joys of winter because they are there just the same as the cold and darkness.

Saturday, November 12, 2016


I am pleased and a little surprised to report that the coursework is going ok. There's still a month until deadlines and I've made a good dent. Surely no last minute panic and annoyance. I will, of course, leave the referencing 'til the last day, about 10 minutes before it's due to be handed in, just so I can inflict some uneccesary stress on my heart. Just so it feels like I've really accomplished something.

In my first year at uni I took an elective module called 'Stars'. It was about famous people, actors and suchlike. The essay was a critique of a stars perfromance in a movie and I chose to do it on Courtney Love's role in The People Vs Larry Flynt. To be perfectly honest, I was out of my depth. I just liked her but I hadn't a damned notion about her acting abilities. It was a 3000 word essay and it caused me pull my hair out and curse the tutor who took the class. I handed it in the day I was flying back home for Christmas. It was a mess but it was done. I then complained about the ridiculous word count to a fellow student in the union about half an hour later. He informed me that the essay was only meant to be 1000 words. The tutor probably wouldn't even mark it.

I ran to the admissions desk and asked for my essay back. I sat in the union and scribbled out paragraph after paragraph. The sweet and kind Dirt Bird offered to retype it for me and hand it in on my behalf. Disaster was avoided. After Christmas I went to collect my work. I was amazed to see one of the best marks I have ever received for an assignment. The tutors comments started off "Hannah, I liked your essay!" So, when it came to editing out all the waffle I actually had some good thoughts. Which was to question how much Courtney Love was actually "acting" in the movie and how much she was just playing herself. I don't care. I'm glad she's not my mum but I still think she's cool.

Saturday, November 05, 2016

5 Dogs and a Me

I'm in the company of 5 dogs. Only one is really content. That would be Zigatron and that's because he's the only one who has his owner here. Judy Pudding was distraught yesterday when she realised Bert wouldn't be taking her to Sligo. She was so distraught she had to sleep on my head last night. Jess is less distraught. Ever since I moved in she has been trying to 'claim' me. She reckoned we would automatically bond over being the youngest sibling. It hasn't quite worked out that way as Ziggy is very territorial over his bedroom and Jess is only permitted occasionally to lie on the bed with us. Last night was one such night. So while Judy lay on my head, Jess lay right beside Judy, on top of the pillows. I had to push Judy out of the way so Ziggy could come under the blankets for his morning cuddle.

Roy and, my uncle's dog, Jack slept downstairs, guarding the house, which was just as well as one of the doors lay open all night. It is no wonder everyone wanted to huddle. As it turns out Jack is a real good boy. He didn't get an overly warm welcome from Jess or Judy but the boys are sticking together. Of course Jack will be pleased to see his mummy and daddy tomorrow but he's a good wee farm dog who's out at every opportunity but doesn't get lost and worry me.

Tonught, I suppose, is music night. Gus and I have been jamming the past few weeks and Bert even joined us on the Clarinet last week. The GCDC's live on!

Friday, October 28, 2016


I feel stuck in between a place of having nothing to write about and everything to write about and so I will deliver it in bitesize chunks that may or may not make much sense to anyone else but me.

I knowingly killed a creature for the first time in many, many years. I like the Buddhist concept of not killing bugs and things but I was having a moment of feeling like the whole world was a big steaming jobby, and what good was trying to be caring all the time really doing me anyway?, so I swatted a bluebottle that was buzzing around my bedroom a few nights ago. I have several things to say about this. I only did after spending what seemed like an eternity trying to usher it out the window. Ziggy looked at me like I was a hypocrite because of all the times I've told him not to play rough with spiders. He then ate the fly the following evening. Also, it was completely in vain for I felt like an evil person and the fly came back to haunt me anyway. It's still here and I shan't be killing it again even though it buzzed in my ear as if to say "murderer"

I have come to the realisation that I, perhaps, love Ziggy too much after incessantly worrying that he was missing the town. I took him on the train for a walk to his old stomping ground. I am vaguely aware that I'm projecting my own feelings onto him. Do I miss the town? Yes. Do I regret coming home? No. What I miss isn't going anywhere. It's all available in the future when I have saved up some money to enjoy it. But I do love Ziggy so and wonder how I will travel for 3 months without him. Maybe I will only go away for 2 and a half months and spend 2 weeks on a roadtrip with Ziggy.

I have been going through a process of trying to rebalance and reconcile my internal and external worlds. My mum has been patiently helping me. I think the psychodynamics module has made me look even deeper within myself and I've started to allow feelings that were previously repressed. This came as a bit of a shock to me as I thought I had my shit together. And I do for the most part. It's about taking the facade away though and realising that I do not have to constantly be my 'ideal' self. It's goddamn exhausting. I can be her when I feel like it and a pissy, moany bitch the rest of the time. Neither one of those states of being defines who I really am.

I'm not sure that there's much else. I'm trying to stay on top of course work. I guess that's why I'm blogging. I dream of holidays everyday. I dream of, once again, surfing the blowhole. I dream and I work and I wait and I tick and I tock like a clock. And, mostly, life is good.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

I've Done My Time

No more tears on the floor,
For the girl who lived in her coat,
She set sail yesterday.
On her little wooden boat,
She cast her wings to the waves,
Said, "This freedom ain't nothing but slavery",
She don't need this halo,
She's getting drunk on apathy,
She drinks the bottle 'til it's dry,
And then she fills it right back up,
She said, "My cup it runneth over",
"I filled it up with all my dust"
The sun it goes down on the East side,
It rises up in the North,
This boat is headed homeward bound,
It's letting nature run it's course,
And she said, "I packed my bags and they are empty like me",
"But that don't matter cause I got everything I need"
"The sun will shine now I can see",
"I've done my time now I am free"

Thursday, October 06, 2016

The Healing Power of Dance

Ziggy and I went for a walk down the back lane and through the woods. It was most pleasant. We came upon some magpie feathers on the ground. The remnants of a kill. We were not sad for we understand all about the circle of death. I'm now sitting in my bed. Just checked emails and facebook. Checked out stumbleupon but not really in the mood for surfing the net. I decided to cuddle Ziggy. He let out a few of his cute little grumbling noises and I buried my face into his hairy back. I sniffed him. "Hmmmm," I thought, "Ziggy smells like the woods". But something was amiss. I sniffed him again and all of a sudden got a flashback of him rolling around in the magpie feathers. I recoiled. I am no longer cuddling Ziggy. And, just in case I have some random blow in reader, Ziggy is a dog :)

It's been another busy week but I feel it's been productive. Some shit got sorted and some other shit did not. The other shit can wait. The highlight of my week was an expedition with my nieces. E told me she had the cold but only half a cold. M had the rest of it. E had given it to her. By accident.

I had a night to myself last Saturday. I indulged in the healing the power of dance. Sunday was a fun day with the girls so I started the week off in good stead. This was well needed after a few rocky days in which I was taking on the problems of the whole world. Silly world. Having problems.

Now I'm on the ocuntdown to a week's holiday from work. Yeehaaa!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

In A Nutshell

The bar that I drink in, the one where everyone knows my dog's name, will never be the same after one of the brothers who ran it died at the weekend. As one of my friends said, this was the bar where the misfits could go and not be looked at funny or judged. We went there because we knew we'd have a good time and not run into trouble. We went there because the people who owned it liked us, even cared for us. And we cared for them. We went there because the craic was mighty and there was always a friendly face. And if you didn't know the unfamiliar faces you always knew them by the end of the night. Of course, we'll still go there as long as it stays open but it will always feel a little emptier.

I found myself in receipt of a £500 bank refund. This was from over 10 years ago when they charged me extorniate interest on a student overdraft. I had been advised not to close the account by a fellow blogger. They said it would cost the bank for me to keep the account open with a couple of pounds in it. This was awesome advice for if I had closed the account I wouldn't have got the refund.

Apparently Nasa have now decided that there is a 13th zodiac sign. I'm not sure how I feel about this. Not because I am overly attached to my starsign or believe that it's gospel truth but more so because it is NASA who have decided this and, well, if that's what them dudes are spending all their money on that's just dumb. I've always believed that humans should really try and understand the earth and soil beneath their feet before trying to figure out the whole universe.

I'm feeling a bit like the warrior spirit is in me at the minute though I'm not entirely certain how to channel that. Normally it's through words but they haven't been coming to me so easily of late. I suppose a big part of my moving back home was to regroup and refocus. I wanted to disconnect for a bit. Now I find myself more than ever craving those deep, meaningful connections. But moving home has provided me with an opportunity to shed some old skin and decorate the blank canvas whatever way I want. Because, I am a work in progress and I have time and space to think about what way I want to nurture my passion and creativity. So that's the bad news, good news, stupid news and the tiny little fragment of my heart.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Staghorn Stan and Watermelon Wine

A friend was asking how things were with me and I replied, "Busy. Busy, busy, busy" and I was informed that this is what the Bokonists whisper when they think about how complicated and unpredictable the machinery of life really is. I haven't read the book by Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle, and I'm not 100 per cent sure what a Bokonist actually is but such things are merely matters of consequence.

I have been meaning to update my blog for days. I keep signing in and then my mind goes blank. What have I really got to say for myself? I started back at tech. I have completed 54 hours of counselling. Just another 96 left to go. Work has been exhausting. I have spoken to about 300 people in the space of two weeks. I had no idea how sheltered my life actually was living in the town with only Ziggy and the Bad Girls for company. My guitar is feeling neglected. Song writing? What's that? Although I do have a working title called Staghorn Stan the Robber Man. He steals people's Staghorns. He also drinks watermelon wine and I'm a little bit jealous of him for that alone.

The tiredness I feel at the minute is probably going to be temporary. This is a time of readjustment and settling in to a new routine. Ziggy seems to have settled remarkably well. He still sneaks up to my room when I'm at work for an afternoon snooze.

This is the point where I struggle with a blog post. I'm too tired to think of a nice tidy ending. I'm aware I'm writing for the sake of it. I have excitement in me with regards to starting 3rd year but I'm too exhausted to express it. And maybe even thinking about the year ahead fuels my exhaustion more. It's probably wise to take one day at a time. 'Til I get a bit more used to this 'adulting' thing which I've never really been any good at. Hopefully the next post will have a bit more punch.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

The Last Hurrah

One of the main reasons I decided to move back home was because I was suffering major flatmate burnout. Gus and I had a huge row one weekend, one that we will no doubt laugh hysterically about in the not too distant future, and I decided it wasn't such a good idea us living together. Of course people said "told ya so" but I have a tendency not to heed the advice of others. So after all that debating about what to do with the bonus I received from work I ended up using it to live a solitary, carefree month by myself. It was awesome but at the back of my mind I still had the niggling worry about who the next flatmate was. I then had a flurry of interest in the room and every single person was unsuitable. So I thought, as I often do in these situations; What Would Jesus Do? He'd go back and live with Mary and Joesph, or in my case, Mary and Bert.

I gave in my month's notice on the flat and then I really enjoyed my time alone. Well, for about 3 weeks, and then I felt that I had O.D'd a little watching the Bad Girls Club and I was, in fact, wanting to revert back to 'bad girl' tendencies and get drunk on Tequila and suchlike, and so on and so forth. I was tired of my own company. Ready to live communally again. As it happens, Nellybert's social life is far more prolific than my own and there's always a hive of activity but the option of solitude if needed.

But, alas, after 3 weeks I got a week off work and then I created my own hive of activity. Dirt Bird joined Nelly, the dogs, and I in Fanad and we had a wonderful time chilling, chatting and childhooding, which is a made-up word to make this sentence sound more punchy but basically means getting in touch with our inner child. We saw a Lookout Cow which we saluted and we mostly ate, cheese, bread and foosted fruit.

Thursday was my last night in the flat and the bad girl within me could not be contained. Jakers had been round picking some stuff up from me and I tempted him to join Ziggy and I for a drink at the pub. As always, everyone remembered Ziggy but wasn't quite sure who I was. It's always the nights you least expect it that turn out the best. We played guitar and chatted until the early hours of the morning and then it was Moving Day which went by smoothly enough considering my fragile state of being. The Super Duper Lovely Mels came to hang out and her mum took us to Mount Stewart the next day. Ziggy tried to take on a hissing swan with young cygnets. This would be Ziggy the dog who goes to pubs, listens to BBC Radio 4 and, quite frankly, should know better.

So that's what I've been at. Now here's a photo of a lily I was particularly endeared by :)

Saturday, August 06, 2016

Unexplained Bleeding From The Ears

One thing's for sure and that is I've been sleeping better at night. I'm guessing because I've eliminated a large amount of stress out of my life. That said, I did wake up out of my sleep last night and needed to go to the toilet. I switched the lights on in my bedroom and hallway to see where I was going but, for some reason, I was spooked. I've lived on my own before and I'm just not that easily scared in anymore. I'm so uneasily scared that when something does startle me and my heart races, I really like it. Because I know that I'm alive.

When I was a little girl I was scared of the dark. I could only sleep with the light on and when I woke up in darkness I hated it. I was also scared of sitting on the toilet seat as I imagined that a hand might come up and grab me and pull me down to the sewers. And I was petrified of mirrors. I did not dare to look into a mirror because I was convinced that something would move behind me, or my reflection would be an evil Hannah. The fear of mirrors came directly from movies I watched as a youngster. Cannibals I could handle, weird happenings in mirrors, I could not. Last night all three of these fears came back. My short trip to the toilet was an anxiety filled one. I imagined being pulled down into the faecal pit of doom. I didn't like turning the lights off behind me and letting the darkness catch up with me. I had to pass the mirror in the hall and I averted my eyes. I didn't look back once, just went straight back to the safety of bed where Zigatron would protect me. I was sleeping again within minutes, the residue of a thought on my mind; why was I so spooked?

It was much later today that I recalled the dream I was having just before I awoke. I was at work and it was announced over the tannoy that a body had been found at the front of the store. Then all the staff members were evacuated because they were going to have to quarantine the store. Epidemics play into one of my biggest fears. At least, I think I'm scared of them. I'm definitely fascinated by them and had been watching a show called Stranger Things last night and they were quarantining a research centre and I thought, "Yaaay! I love a good old 'outbreak' plotline, I hope there's some unexplained bleeding from the ears!" So I guess that's why I was dreaming about it.

I have to say, I actually kinda enjoyed feeling scared last night. I've had bad dreams before that have left me with an unsettled feeling all day long. They are dreams that also play into one of my biggest fears and that's when everyone hates me and they won't tell me why. I'm sure Freud would have a field day with that.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Way Forward

I haven't managed to do much writing for the Writing Project. It is a work in progress though and probably won't be ready for publication until sometime in 2045 when I'm a crazy old rat lady. So why, pray tell, have I not been blogging? I have developed a terrible addicition to a reality TV show called The Bad Girls Club. The name says it all really. It's trash TV but I am convincing myself it's for the purposes of counselling training. And so it is, kinda. I might not always like what these girls do but I can understand why they behave "badly" and I know they come from a place of hurt. Reality TV has always been fascinating to me because people are fascinating.

There has been a rather exciting development in my life. I've made the decision to move out of my flat and back home to the Dreen. The past four years have been incredibly unstable, challenging, rewarding and beautiful. It has been an absolute roller coaster with many, many ups and downs and all the way rounds. The wind has knocked me off my surfboard, I've clung on to the edge by my fingertips and I've sailed in the calmest seas of tranquility. I've broke down, cruised and crashed. I picked myself back up and brushed the desert off my hands. And my decision doesn't mean that I won't face troubled waters again but it will enrich the quality of my life for this stage of the journey. And it gives me back a little bit of control over my destiny. I was stuck for a long time. Still progressing in a lot of ways but stuck in a life that was stagnant. All because of money really.

I'm heading into the future with excitement and hope and a desire to wake up each day with a purpose; be happy, smile, work hard, stop and smell the roses, love, grow, be. Finish the final year of my course, get 150 hours, graduate. Learn to drive, save money, go travelling again. I only plan to go for 3 months and Ziggy will have been living at mum's for a while by then so it shouldn't be as big a shock to his system. I need something to look forward to and I can't think of anything better than the prospect of going away. My heart is warmed because Ziggy's life will be so much better too. He'll never be on his own when I'm at work, he can run and exercise all day long, eat calf shit, chase cats and run wild and free through the fields. Things are on the up!

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Still Dreamin'

I've started a new writing project. Because, y'see, I haven't given up on my dream of one day becoming a published writer. At this stage of the game I think it mught be a more realistic dream than becoming a rock star. I'm not entirely throwing that notion out of the window either though.

The palace has been looking a bit drab of late so here's some pictures of dogs and a video of me singing about being broken.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

My Analogy

Imagine the whole world was a human body. Every part of that body, every organ, every limb, every cell, represented the people of the world. Mostly the body is working together to keep itself healthy, but there are parts of that body that don't function so well. Say, for example, the little finger on the left hand of the body wasn't quite right. There was something wrong with that little finger and it wasn't fully connected to the rest of the body. It was made up of 'bad' cells. And one night when the body is sleeping the little finger of the left hand attacks the ring finger beside it. So the rest of the body suffers the loss of it's ring finger because of the actions of the little finger. What does the rest of the body do? It gets rid of the little finger because it doesn't trust it to not damage other parts of the body. What was disconnected from the body due to, let's say, a 'glitch' becomes fully disconnected from the body because it was amputated because of the fear of further risk. And a body can survive without the little finger on the left hand. And it can also survive the loss of it's ring finger.

Let's say though, that when that little finger was disconnected from the rest of the body it just withered away to nothing. It rotted and decayed until eventually there was nothing left. That's pretty much what happens to things like that. But do the 'bad' cells just wither and rot and decay until they too disappear? Probably not. Because those 'bad' cells are part of the body as a whole, not just the little finger. So the finger is gone but the 'bad' cells just find a new part of the body to reside in. They go to the big toe on the right foot. The same thing happens and the body is now missing two fingers from the left hand and two toes from the right foot. All of a sudden the body doesn't trust itself. Where organs used to work together for the greater good they now fend for themselves and trust no other parts of the body as they may contain traces of the 'bad' cells. But they don't work so well on their own. They were designed to work together. The whole biological system of the body is in chaos. Limbs are amputated until the body is immobile. Eventually everything fails, with the heart the last to give up.

How can the body prevent this from happening? How can the body cut out the 'bad' cells without becoming completely disconnected from itself? How do we stop the little finger from starting all this nonsense. I guess I don't know anything for sure but maybe the little finger felt disconnected for a reason. Did the rest of the body stop to think about what that reason may be, or did it act quickly and impulsively out of fear and a necessity for self-preservation? Did it do a good job of preserving itself? Did it believe that the little finger would surely act again and so it was better off amputated? Did it ever stop to think that, since it was the same body, connected to the same heart, that maybe it was just as responsible for the actions of the little finger as the little finger was? Or did it find blame and fear easier to comprehend than compassion and understanding?

So the body is the world, and each organ and limb are the people in the world and they are all connected, except some don't feel or understand that connection so we get rid of them because we think they're going to poison and spoil eveything. Except that the 'bad' cells are part of the body as a whole, not just specific limbs and organs. And when things get tough, complicated or scary, instead of trying to understand where these 'bad' cells came from we try to eradicate them by any means necessary, until eventually the whole system collapses, because we don't know how to understand or look after ourselves. Not really. We don't see that we are all just one big body connected to one big heart and, one day, if we don't try to start listening and understand each other, that heart will stop beating.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016


The weekend pleased me. I accomplished everything I wanted to whilst remaining in a relaxed, zen-like state of mind. The chicken was cooked and it has fed Ziggy and I for several days now. I finished Life of Pi last night and I'm trying to decide whether I should finish off Shantaram, another half read book, or start on the Stephen King one lent to me by Bilrus. I am erring more on the side of Stephen King right now. I read a lot of his novels when I was younger (much younger, perhaps, maybe too young) and there's a familiarity in his style of writing. I am feeling nostalgic and want the comfort of familiarity. I dreamt last night of the cast of New Girl. I had watched all 5 seasons back to back and felt a little hollow when it was over. So hollow, in fact, that I then trawled youtube for blooopers, interviews and anything involving those actors that had become like a family to me. This is maybe why I haven't watched TV shows in so long. I get horribly attached. Let's not forget the rollercoaster ride that was Karl and Susan Kennedy's marriage in Neighbours. I became too involved. I cared too much. I cursed the evil Isobel.

I reached my 30 hour target last week for the counselling course. It was a tremendous feeling. To think that I was on the verge of giving up in April. To think that I, while holding the metaphorical gun to my head, nearly pulled the trigger. Training to be a counsellor is not an easy feat. Due to the nature of emotional complexities it requires you to look deep within yourself. We're not always prepared for what we might find. We can lull ourselves into a false sense of security by thinking that we have got our shit together but, as when peeling an onion, we discover that there are layers upon layers of 'stuff' that rears it's ugly head just as we feel we've accomplished something.

I also passed my exam and coursework. Not exactly with flying colours but considering how much tougher it's all been this year I am happy with my results. Just one more assessment to hand in and that's me going into 3rd year with the rest of the crew. And while I feel relief and happiness there is also a large dollop of mental exhaustion thrown in for good measure. I'll be glad when this course is behind me. Though the training never really ends. The liklihood of me walking straight into a job when I graduate is slim. I50 hours is required to complete the course but 450 hours must be completed before I can become accredited by the BACP and this is what most employers will be asking for. If only I could count all the many hours I have clocked up counselling friends and work colleagues!

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Roastin' Roosters

Since I got back into reading I have been mostly finishing books that I started a long time ago and lost interest in. One of them was a book by Anneliese Mackinstosh called Any Other Mouth. It was a charmingly transparent collection of short stories about the author's strange and beautiful coming of age memories. I identified very much with the author for her unashamed honesty. I'm now reading Life of Pi which I started before I went to Thailand several years ago. It just didn't grip me. I kept trying sporadically but all I could ever manage was about 3 pages every few years. It's meant to be a fantastic book so I've decided to persist this time and now that I've got to the stage where Pi is stranded on the lifeboat with a tiger I'm getting more into it.

Tonight I have a lovely evening planned. It involves bathing Ziggy because he is in dire need of one. It also involves playing guitar and starting a new jigsaw. It might involve watching some kind of comedy show like New Girl or Arrested Development. Today I bought a whole chicken. Unfortunately not a pet. One that goes in the oven. I am 34 years old and I've never roasted a chicken. Or a rooster. I felt like it was time to make that transition into adulthood. I also bought a bag of spinach and have eaten a handful of it raw. It was rather displeasing but I need green stuff in my diet.

The GCDCs have collapsed again. There's a whole back story that is completely insignificant to anyone but me but it's for the best right at this moment of time. I told one of my mates in work and he said he was going to make a meme. This meme would say "One Direction Have Split Up" and people looking mildly disinterested, then, "The GCDC's Have Split Up" and crowds of folk wailing and crying. Y'see, it was more fun for me to tell people that I was in a band than actually being in the band. What started off as a tongue-in-cheek joke became a reality. The GCDC's should have stayed in the Museum of Good Ideas.

Having said that it was an interesting learning experience for me. It spurred me on to be more creative and it gave me confidence in my singing and playing. The boys were always really encouraging and supportive and it truly is something special to hear other people playing along to your song. I most certainly haven't given up on music, that's for sure.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Letting Go

I don't want this to be a long blog post but I'm not sure I can do it in under 500 words. My nieces and I performed a symbolic ritual on Thursday. The reason being that I felt it was very much time to let go of some stuff. The stuff I was letting go of was years of emotional baggage but I had something physical to represent the baggage. A dried out rose head given to me about 18 years ago by an ex boyfriend called Will in the hope that he could woo me back.

Between my personal counselling and talks with my supervisor I began to see what that rose head represented. Will was an amazing guy, kind, sweet, funny and creative. But he had carried a sadness with him for many years. Before I had met him he had been addicted to heroin. During the relationship he became deeply depressed. I guess he was adjusting to life without his crutch. I guess I hoped that I could be his crutch. Having battled with depression myself I knew how fragile happiness could be sometimes. I realised that I was not going to make Will happy, he had to do it by himself. If you love something you give it away. I gave him away. I was young, fragile and I really didn't want to compromise my own mental well being. I knew I could easily fall into that deep, dark abyss in trying to rescue Will.

He really understood my intentions. That's why he wanted to woo me back. He wanted to go find his happiness and come back to me. That never happened though. For two reasons, the first being that I embarked upon a new relationship and the second reason being Will died of smoke inhalation in a house fire.

There were two things that went on for me after this. The first was an overwhelming sense of guilt. On top of the guilt I denied myself the opportunity to grieve for him properly because I just didn't feel I had any right to. So how did I channel these emotions? I made a pact with myself to never hurt anyone again. To never give up on anyone. It is no real surprise that I was alway attracted to the helping professions. Of course, it was in me anyway, but I suppose I felt I had to right a wrong.
I have come to the conclusion however, and it's taken me long enough, that I keep attracting this pattern of relationship. Not only that, when the relationship doesn't work out, which is all the time, I still want to be there for the person. I find it really hard to close the door because I'm scared the door will close forever and I'll be left wondering 'Did I do enough?' Having realised that I am creating all of this turmoil for myself I can no longer sit here blaming the universe for always breaking my heart. I break my own heart.

So, a mission was set upon by Marha, Evie, Ziggy, Jess and myself and we headed down to the woods. I explained to the girls what we were doing and why (I gave them the kid's edit). Evie was a little too young to really get it but Martha was not only very interested but very sweet and understanding. I explained to them that I wanted to crunch the rose head up into dust and then we'd all blow it up into the air while making a wish. They spent a little time holding the rose and looking at it. Martha panicked a little and told me she wanted me to keep the rose, even just for another week. I told her I understood why she wanted me to do that but I had already kept it for a long time and it was time to let it go. She worried that I might forget about Will. I showed her the rose and I said, "Sweetheart, Will isn't in this rose. I'll never forget him because Will is in here", and I placed my hand on my heart.

Then she asked me if some of the rose dust would make it's way to Wales where Will was buried. I told her it most definitely would because some would land on an insect and carry it to Wales. Then we discussed the wishes and I said it was always a good idea to make a wish for something that might actually happen. I used the example of wishing that a nice man would come into my life. After the ceremony Martha told me she had wished for something that might actually happen.

As it happened the rose didn't melt into dust like I thought and I was surprised by how strong and intact the petals still were after all this time. And I'm sure that one of those petals will find it's way to Wales.

Sunday, June 05, 2016

The Beauty of Bees and Sacredness of Sleep

I'm trying to be a more consistent blogger. No real reason. Just 'cause. It may mean setting myself some kind of A-Z challenge. I haven't decided what yet. For now I'll just write about the countryside.

It's marching season in Norn Iron and often the parades march right past my flat sending Ziggy into convulsions of fear and rage. Frage. It's not pretty. Last night we opted for an evening of serenity out at the Dreen. As always I checked on the Bonsai trees. They are going through a growth spurt and it's nice to see them developing. The Ash's trunk is tiny yet solid. The Hawthorn's trunk is twisty and unusual.

Then Ziggy, Jess, Holly de Cat and I took a walk along the back lane. Holly likes to follow us on these expeditions but she also likes to pretend that she's stalking us like a sniper. Everytime I look back she stops in her tracks and sniffs a hedge. We approcahed the woods that were planted nearly 20 years ago. They are proper woods now. I remember helping Bert tramp down the long grass around the young saplings to give them a chance to grow. I helped create these woods and that was a nice feeling. There hadn't been rain in over a week and the sheugh's were as dry as a bone.

When we came back mum had noticed that there were hundreds of bumble bees bumbling around a tree with yellow flowers. I can't remember the name of the tree. My nieces could probably tell me. It felt almost magical to stand below that tree and feel the hum of the bees, buzzing happily as they filled their pollen sacs with sweetness. I also secretly wished one of them might sting me so I would know what that felt like. Will I go through my whole life not knowing what a bee sting feels like? Well, if this is all the problems the countryside is going to present me with then I can handle that.

The work bonus arrived and I am buying myself a new mattress because there comes a point in your life when sleep is just about one of the most sacred things there is.

Thursday, June 02, 2016

In Bloom

Most people have some kind of default position. When I find things getting on top of me my default position is to crave complete freedom. I fantasise about getting off the grid and living my life like a hobo. I have another default position and that is to revert back to a mental age of about 5.

For a long time now part of my bedtime routine has involved doing online jigsaws as a way of shutting my brain down and drift off to bobo land. I have decided I no longer enjoy my laptop coming to bed with me and so I've got back into reading. And, of course, I'm reading a Paulo Coelho book at the minute. Although that makes it sound like I've been doing this for a while and have read several books. I haven't. I've been doing it for about a week and The Winner Stands Alone is the first novel I've read in a long time. But I feel like it's the start of a good habit and, not long ago when I was having a declutter, I perused my bookshelf and realised there are a number of books I've been meaning to read.

Last summer I took to weeding the garden. I find it to be one of the most therapeutic pastimes. And I think I wrote about this last year, about how most people enjoy planting beautiful flowers and watching them bloom but I just really like getting rid of the complicated root systems of weeds. I feel like it's an anology in a way. Some people want to make things pretty, I want to get rid of all the choking negativity so that there's a place for beauty to blossom.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Going Places

I found out recently that they've made an animated film of The Little Prince so on Sunday Gus and I sat down to watch it. I was crying before it even got to the sad bit. In fact, as soon as the Little Prince came on I started to cry. They were tears of joy, however, as I remembered how I felt when I first read that book. I was kind of too young to understand the worldly wisdom but I absorbed it all the same, I knew it was something special.

Gus has a new job which he starts on Saturday. There are many people delighted by the fact that he'll be working in a pet shop, none more so than the Zigatron who'll be entitled to 20% discount. Orange balls galore!

I have been feeling like I need to immerse myself in a different culture. It's been 5 years since I was in a country where English was not the native language. I miss the feeling of not really knowing what's going on most of the time. I miss having to speak Spanglish, Thailish or making exaggerated hand gestures to communicate. Actually, I do the exaggerated hand gestures anyway, which makes watching playback of videos of myself cringeworthy as all I can see is my tiny head in the background while these wispy, long alien fingers waft about the air.

Today was the first day that I had three clients. Two were new and I really feel like I'm getting somewhere now, feeling excited to learn and connect and gain the experience in diversity so I can become a better counsellor. I'm 8 hours away from hitting my 30 hour target to make it into 3rd year and it doesn't feel like I'm wading through mud quite so much. I relish seeing my supervisor ecause she puts my mind at rest and encourages me greatly. Gus is going places, I'm going places, Ziggy met another hairy lion boy who Gus met through GOT extra work and, who knows, maybe he'll get his first acting role soon :)

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Express Yourself

Out for a walk yesterday with Gus and Ziggy and I saw a tree I liked so I tried to be that tree. This consisted of me holding my arms and one leg up in a disjointed fashion. Later in the evening we fell to the drink because the sun was shining bright and it was Saturday night. You might say the theme of the evening was "expressing yourself" which Gus and I did with great gusto through the medium of dance, jobby talk and rhyming words. We had a fire escape disco, a candle light disco and a sitting down on the sofa disco. We funked out for 7 solid minutes to James Brown. We immersed ourselves in a little bit of electro sitar dub. For once, we did not play any GCDC songs, like Russian Alcoholic Zest.

Earlier in the day I walked past a guy sitting outside a cafe with a chess board and a sign that said "play chess?". I liked the cut of his gib so I challeneged him to a game. I couldn't take my time over it though as I was conscious of having to get back home to take Ziggy for his walk. I could have used that as an excuse as to why I lost horribly to him but, even with all the time in the world he'd still have won.

Work has been a lot better for me recently. I think it was a mind over matter thing. I just had to tell myself that it wasn't that bad and that I could survive all the childish nonsense that people fill their days up with instead of doing actual work. I should hopefully be getting back into music with the lads as well. I feel that the foggy mist has been lifted and that I'd like to enjoy the summer rather than feeling like the world isn't how it's meant to be. For me, right now, it's exactly how it's meant to be. Mind over matter!

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

A Carpet of Carnations

I felt a little ashamed of myself complaining about getting a bonus at work and not knowing what to do with it. My life is far from perfect but sometimes I do have a tendency to go into 'poor me' mode. On the one hand, I don't see why I should pretend that everything is a bed of roses. On the other hand, I know I'm privelaged in many ways. To even be able to barely afford an education is an opportunity many in the world don't have. Not only that, I am offered help by my family but pride prevents me from accepting it without showing some kind of resistance. I try to be fiercely independent and it doesn't always work in my favour.

So, instead of complaining I want to write about my birthday and what a lovely day it was. Katkins was home with her Mr. Handsome Baby Boy. On the morning of my birthday we went to the Giant's Causeway. I really wish I could say it was lovely but the wind was blowing a gale and we were all freezing. Except for baby J who was happed up in his baby carrier and doling out smiles to everyone he saw. Then we went out to Nelly's Garden for food and cake. Martha and Evie gave me a million brithday cuddles and kisses. Evie was so excited about the chocolate malteaser birthday cake, so excited that she could barely wait and so she lead the "Happy Birthday" chorus so we could get on with the eating of cake.

Ziggy lost his orange ball again and so I went to Pets at Home and he got a bundle of new toys. Then Gus came back from Scotland with a brand new orange ball. Ziggy destroyed it though. Perhaps he thought that was preferable to losing it again. That's the end of 'special' balls for Ziggy. He's not responsible enough.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

Bogus Bonus

Being in a band is worse than being in a relationship. Why? Because there's more than two people involved. Jakers was the first to throw his head up. Actually, it was probably Gus who was the first one to walk. Then he came back. Then Jakers left. Then Jakers came back. Then Tobe left. Then I took sabbatical because I was too busy with course work and my head got a little fried with all the dramatics. Now all the boys are back playing together and I'm still not sure what I want to do.

Things should be better after Wednesday. I have an exam on CBT, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. It is my least favourite approach to counselling but I still gotta know how to use it. It doesn't really make my heart sing. That's why, instead of revising, my flat is cleaner today than it's ever been. After Wednesday I have one more assignment to do. I have until July to finish it and as long as I reach my 30 hours and pass everything I'll graduate into 3rd year. I'm not sure how I feel about the exam. They are my least favourite method of testing someone's ability and they've never been my strong point (put me under the spotlight and make me prove myself and I will automatically rebel because that's easier to stomach than being a failure).

Everything else is ho hum. Even Ziggy has little to report. We're living life day by day, hour by hour, burning scented candles because I got so many for my birthday. There was good news. I got my first ever bonus at work. Of course, they'll tax the bejesus out of it but that still leaves me with a couple of hundred pounds. I have been wondering what to do with it. My natural instinct is to hoard it away for a rainy day because I know for a fact there will be rainy days ahead. You don't go through 6 flatmates in a couple of years and not become a little apprehensive about where the next rent money's gonna come from. Then I thought I should treat myself to something because all my money has been tied up with learning and I haven't had something special in a while. I thought about a digital recording device so I could add bits and pieces to my songs. This would also be handy if I decide to start jamming again. Then I think I should be sensible and use the money to finally get my driving test (yawn). And though it's nice to have a bonus I can't help but hate the indecision and dilemma of what to do with it. Money complicates everything.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

My Tuppence Worth

I have just completed my 13th hour of my placement. Just another 137 to go! I swore I wouldn't bow down to the pressure but I'm not superhuman and it does feel overwhelming at times. It's not the actual counselling though. Those hours go by and I barely even notice the time go in. I feel myself very much present and relaxed in sessions and it really does feel good to be helping in some way.

But I can't help but feel a little bit like a fraud sometimes, as I'm sure even many qualified therapists feel from time to time. I'm watching an American TV series called 'In Treatment'. Obviously I find the show interesting but the sessions I think are most enlightening are when the therapist (played by Gabriel Byrne) goes to visit his former supervisor (played by Diane Weist) for guidance and support. It brings it home that we are all human at the end of the day, struggling with day to day life and those pesky emotions that arise.

My own emotions have been playing havoc with me recently. There's still a shame and stigma attached to expressing emotions of any kind. It's tough for people to say "I feel so terribly sad" just as equally as it's tough for people to say "I feel incredibly, immensely happy". People kind of save the expressions of joy for events such as marriage, the birth of a child, a new job or the start of a new realtionship. Rarely do we see people dancing down the street feeling joy just for the sake of it, and if we did, we'd call them mad.

I get frustrated with bottling things up, and superficiality, empty words, meaningless gestures. I get frustrated with 'nothingness' and it's amazing how much humans fill their lives up with 'nothingness'. I get frustrated that we live in a technologically advanced age that makes 'connection' so easy yet so hollow. And I guess that's why I harp back to a time when humans relied more on instinct. Because they had to tune into themselves to survive. Not only that, they had to tune into nature. Then humans realised they had brains, and they could figure stuff out, conquer it, control and manipulate the environment so that survival was 'easier'.

I don't disagree that humans were meant to progress, hell, we were barbarians for an age. But I think we were meant to progress mindfully. Which is perhaps happening, at a very slow rate. Interestingly, it is through ancient philosophies that we are reverting back to, that are teaching us to progress more mindfully. Which further backs up my theory that we kind of lost sight of ourselves along the way, that we need to reconnect with ourselves, with each other, with nature and with the universe. But first, ourselves.

There's a whole bunch of people with their eyes wide open to the world. There's a whole breed of cynics who are beaten and bruised. I will not become one of them. Despite my sadness, my disconnection, my aloneness, I think we'll collectively figure this one out. The world will inevitably end. Some think that we'll just rape and pillage the earth until it disentegrates. Whilst our minds disentegrate so too does the earth. I rarely claim any opinion to be absolute but I can understand the concept of reincarnation and karma. I think humans are meant to go through this process and there are two possible outcomes. The cynics' outcome, the world will end, humans will destroy it. Then my outcome....humans will get there in the end. We will come to understand that love is pretty much the only thing of value in this world (which is pretty all encompassing really when you think about what makes you feel love/d) And when the world reaches that harmonic, peaceful state, it will end. Consciousness will end. Because the process will be complete and everything, everything, comes to an end eventually.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016


I had a really lovely Easter weekend despite the fact that I didn't get one single day off work. What made it so lovely? Girls. And plenty of them. Well two of them...but two of the best. Dirt Bird arrived on Thursday. We took Ziggy for a walk and then headed off to the Pizza Parlour for dinner and wine. On Saturday the Lovely Mels was back. Mels was my roadtrippin' buddy last year and it's always a pleasure to see her. So Dirt Bird, Mels, Gus and I went to the treehouse, lit a fire and proceeded to play guitar and the 'oddja boodja' game to drown out the sound of the wind howling through the leaves and the branches creaking. The treehouse was actually moving and had it not been for the fact that it has survived many's a dstrong storm in the past three years I'd have been a little worried for our safety. Also, we managed to make the stove glow red hot again.

Bert was in the house entertaining Mr. Banjo and Judy and Jess' dogfather. We tried to lure them up to the treehouse but they were being old men. Eventually we joined them for a bit of music making. It had been a while since I'd seen or heard Bert playing the clarinet and I have to say, he's passed the complete amateur stage and he plays some songs with real soul. Both Mr. Banjo and I were very proud of him.

Here is a video of me singing a song. Admittedly it's not a great recording, or even sung as well as it could be. Plus, I've adapted it slightly. It is very much a work in progress. As they all are. I'm taking a break from jamming with the boys so I can stay on top of my coursework and have some time to write lyrics for all the songs with no words. Then we'll have a load of songs with no name, and sure, that's all you can really expect from a band with no name. And no drummer :)

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Grumbleface Grumbledon

My proper job has been taxing of late. I have cut down hours by my own choice because I don't want to be in that environment. Not only that, financially, it doesn't make sense for me to work too much overtime. I have been feeling the pressure of the course and placement. I knew it wasn't going to be easy but I guess I didn't prepare myself for the double whammy effect of being both physically and mentally drained. This is another reason why I've cut hours down. I've realised that it's impacting on my patience and I need that for other areas of my life.

I had to take my rose tinted glasses off and come to the realisation that my peace, love and empathy is not quite as abundant as I had thought. I guess I'm probably becoming more real. It's ok to feel pissed off sometimes. It's a bit boring to feel pissed off all the time and nigh on impossible to sprinkle fairy dust on everyone and everything. I have most definitely denied myself the opportunity to experience negative emotions such as anger. Sadness is different. I have no control over it. But I can control my anger. And it's right to do so. But it's not right to try to be all sunshine, sweetness and light all of the time.

It's got a lot to do with speaking my mind more. Being assertive. Realising that my voice is important and that I'm allowed to feel overwhelmed and worried. And, sometimes, lonely. That isn't to say that I have resigned myself to this attitude. I'm just tired. Tired of that pressure I said I wasn't going to put on myself. Tired of the ram and shark inner critics butting and biting. Tired of being tired.

But there is stuff to do and that is better than not having stuff to do. There are things to look forward to and it is also Spring very soon. Any day now.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

The Real Update

I finished my blog post yesterday with a feeling of uneasiness inside of me. I couldn't quite be sure what it was all about and then it hit me. I was writing the post just to write. Just to be there and be present. But I wasn't writing from my heart and that always makes me feel like a fraud. 2016 has been a funny one for me so far. All the hope and positivity I had channelled and nurtured over 2015 just seemed to disappear in a puff of smoke. I have been keeping busy and doing plenty but I always know when my soul isn't singing as sweet a song as it should be.

At the end of 2015 I had a flourish of creativity. I now expect this to be available on tap and that's not how creativity works. But hooray for me being a sensitive soul and being knocked by every tiny insignificant event in my life. Because if I try hard enough there is always a little surplus supply of sorrow within me to inspire some kind of poetry. I suppose I can't help but feel self-inflicted pressure to churn out words and songs for the band (we will always be called the GCDC's but don't tell Jobe). But this year, so far, I haven't given myself the head space to connect with myself. I shouldn't leave those things to chance.

Today is beautiful. Ziggy and I went out for an early morning stroll. Ziggy had been Gurgletron (that's what we call him when his tummy makes noises) all morning and he produced a toxic jobby that couldn't be picked up with a jobby bag so I had to run aaway very quickly. My walks with Ziggy are very valuable to me, whether he does toxic jobbies or not. It's where I do a lot of my productive thinking and I ask myself the super serious questions like "What the f**k is wrong with you Hannah?" The answer is always different depending on the day. Sometimes I'm gentle with myself, sometimes I'm not.

My living room is a sun trap. Both Ziggy and I have been basking and I, for the second time this year, have forgotten about the eggs boiling in the saucepan. At least they didn't explode this time.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

A Little Update

Oh...what's this? A cheeky afternoon all to myself? Don't mind if I do! Ziggy has been walked by his Granny. I have done a small amount of course work. The surfaces are clean(ish) and the floors have been mopped. No excuses not for blogging. To be fair, I was struck down with The Flu for a week and a half. Notice how it was The Flu and not donkey or bird flu. It was horrible.

I am much better now. I have started my placement for the degree. It has been great to get started but opened the door to a lot of worry and self-doubt. But sure, I wouldn't be happy unless I was putting myself through some intense experience that caused me to question every aspect of my being. That's just how I roll.

I haven't written any new songs for a while. It's been a funny start to the year and it's taken me until now to get caught up with myself. I had a disco with Ziggy the other night. I danced and Ziggy tried to stop me from dancing. I won. I danced my heart out because it was the first spurt of energy I'd had since being sick.

My cheeky afternoon all to myself got kinda hijacked. But that's ok. It's Saturday evening now and I have cider to drink and a geetar to play :)

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Keeping Busy

Days 3,4,5. 6 and 7 of my holiday went by so quickly I hadn't even time to write about them. It was a really lovely week off though with just a nice balance of everything. These are some of the things I did:

1. Band practice
2. Spent a lovely day with my mum who helped me find the perfect chest of drawers.
3. Watched an awful lot of Hoarders
4. Had coffee with a friend
5. Had coffee with another friend
6. Had lots of coffee in general
7. Had to pee lots because of volume of coffee consumed
8. Gave a guitar lesson to an 8 year old
9. Spent 5 hours in a philisophical debate with Gus
10. Went to a party

Tomorrow could potentially be a big day for me. I have distracted myself by cleaning the fridge, washing machine, oven and several other appliances. I may have to create another big event to feel nervous about in a few months time as this seems to be the only time that I get round to these kind of things.

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Hank Macho's Lunar Fringe

Day two of a week off work. I have clean floors and a rested head. Tomorrow I'll spend some time with mum charity shopping for a new/old chest of drawers. Why haven't I blogged in a month? Because I've probably had a total of 5 hours to myself this year so far. Complaining? No. I don't measure the quality of my weeks by how many blog posts I can churn out. I measure it in terms of contentment.

I am reasonably content considering I have a whole lot of shit to wade through. But if it wasn't that shit it would be some other shit and at least it's metaphorical shit as opposed to literal shit that some people actually do wade through because they are hoarders and they are incapable of letting go of anything.

I have yet another flatmate but he is more of a new/old flatmate. Gus is back! Not as a romantic partner but as a good friend who needs a space to be in that helps him to achieve what he wants to achieve. It's not everyone that is up for living with their ex-partners but Gus and I are not everyone.

The GCDCs are in a process of changing name. Nothing has been finalised yet as Jobe thinks we need to take the name more seriously. Gus and I compiled a list of potential band names with the aim of making them so ridiculous that Jobe would surely think the GCDCs was awesome. The list looked a little like this:

The Bleeding Goats (The Bloats)
The Blowhole Surfers
The Psycho-Sausagelogical Casserole
Magic Bowie Bag
Salad Fingers and The Rusty Spoons
Bobo Bob and the Buckfast Buckaneers
Asbo Gilbo
The Thimbleriggers
The Cosmonaughts
The Zigatrons

As it happened, he quite liked The Zigatrons but then Gus got to work on making an anagram of all of our names and came up with Hank Macho's Lunar Fringe which we all thought sounded rather spiffing. And much less politically ripe than The Fenian Firewater Revival.

Saturday, January 02, 2016

Happy New Year

Well here it is. The year 2016. Let's wrap 2015 up. It was a good year, mostly. It started off hopeful and full of laughter but flatmate issues were still a common theme. I always knew that 33 would be a good age for me and despite waking up on my 33rd birthday, living with an alcoholic who hadn't gone to work all week, I knew I'd have the strength to deal with it.

2015 was the year of music. The GCDC's went from being a really awful two-piece cover band to a proper band that still do really awful covers but reasonable versions of their own songs. It's easier playing your own stuff as people don't know what it's meant to sound like so you can get away with more. It's hard to pick my favourite song but I think I'm gonna go with the 'Whisky Song' co-written by Gus and I.

There were a lot of good ideas this year that made it to the Museum of Good Ideas but that was as far as they got. Probably for the best as Gus really did not need spatulas and corkscrews where fingers should be. There was a lot of laughing and a lot of drawings were drew very badly. I've had four different people from four different natiionalites living with me, I've surfed the blowhole, failed my driving test 3 times, shot a wedding, danced my heart out and wrote so many words that have been received with great appreciation. Aaaah, those delectable words that, somehow, keep on flowing and helping me to tune in, tune out and cop off. That's how the saying goes, isn't it?

It's been a fun year. My highlights were The Roatrip, where there was most definitely no hooting taking place, meeting my gorgeous nephew who is already a fan of the GCDCs, my summer fling with Gus that was sweet and funny and did neither of us no real lasting harm. It's been a positive year because I've made progress with my course, I've dipped and dived with my confidence but I've learnt to take a lot of pressure off myself. There were not too many depressive episodes. This was also progress.

I'm excited about this year and the journey onwards. As I keep saying to Gus and Jakers (whilst tapping my pen on the table and rotating it in the air) "There's so much talent in this room" They look at me like I'm mad but I know they believe me.