Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Beautiful day

It is the most beautiful day here today. One of those days where working should be illegal. Like Summer has snuck in through the kitchen door while Winter was thrashing about having a tantrum in it's bedroom last week, gently closing it's bedroom door and taking over the house. It's glorious, and it is impossible not to grin because of it. Like The Cheshire Cat.

I am going to see the sea after Real Work, to bask in the sunshine and watch the sun set. This makes me grin even more. And then to one of my favourite restaurants for dinner. Things are good. Oh, and did I tell you - my sister is having twins? Yeeha.

Is it obvious I had a great night's sleep last night?

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Pond is leaving. Sob!

The Pond is leaving. This is a seriously, seriously bad thing. To the point that when she told me she had made her mind up, I asked her if I could just pretend it wasn't happening. You see it's not just that she's leaving our house in the middle of the street. That would be okay, and was supposed to happen - she was just staying here as a stop-gap between houses. Then she was moving into another house in another suburb with her love, who was moving here from Faraway. To The City Beneath the Mountain. But now she has decided to move to be with her love instead. Faraway. It's about 1000 fucking kilometres away. Too far.

I suffer from Separation Anxiety. In the severest form. And The Pond is one of my closest friends. It'll be like losing a limb really. I know that sounds over-dramatic but, hell, in case you haven't noticed, I am prone to a little over-dramatisation. And she's the kind of friend that, when we met, it felt like I'd known her forever.

As a lighter-but-related aside - does anyone know if it's true that when they say a place is 960km away from another, it is from the post office in The City Beneath the Mountain to the post office in Faraway? That's what I heard, but I was wondering if it were true. I suppose you do need a central point to measure from, but one (or, at least I) would've thought maybe they'd take it from the mayor's house or something. You know - somewhere where a person lives because, as far as I know, nobody lives in the Post Office. I suppose it's good to know, though, for in case you have a letter to post and you want it to have Faraway stamped on the envelope, instead of The City Beneath the Mountain.

Point being: Faraway is too far away. And I don't want her to go. I wonder if I could sabotage it by hiding all her bags? She can't leave if she has nothing to pack her stuff in, can she?

Wizards and wildness

I am wild. I kissed a wizard on Saturday. Okay, so he may not really be a wizard, more of a magician. I did ask him if he knew Harry Potter (admit it, the teen wizard is hot, it’d be cool to know him, especially now he’s not so teen anymore and likes taking his clothes off on stage). He looked at me strangely and vehemently denied knowing any real wizards. I’m certain that’s part of his cover though. As a wizard, I wouldn’t think you’d go about willy-nilly telling girls you’ve just met in dark clubs that you’re a real wizard – have you seen some of those baddies that go after Harry?

But let me start at the beginning – it was The Pond’s birthday on Saturday so we had a braai/party thing on Saturday afternoon which stretched into the evening. It was great – lots of lovely people, champagne, happiness. At about eleven the last stragglers left and I went to bed, very sedate and unwild. But then my phone rang – one of my favourite people in the world, SJ, saying come to Dark Dingy Club (DDC). I waivered. Then I, from The Big Smoke phoned, and I told him my dilemma. He urged me to go. I now realise he is a bad influence.

So I (wildly) got back out of bed and went to DDC. It was fun. And wild. I will stick to just the wizard bit of the wild though. How did I know the boy there was a wizard, I hear you asking… Was he wearing a cloak with stars on? Nope. Did I watch him fly in on his broomstick? Nope. Did he have a wand tucked into his jean’s pocket? Nope. (And get your minds out of the gutter – you especially Clive, I can hear you sniggering.) I’ll tell you what it was…

He kept making a five rand coin appear from behind my ear. I kid you not. It was hysterical. My sister’s comment when I told her was: “Did you keep the R5 coins?” No, I didn’t. I’m wild, not a prostitute! It really was funny, and he kept us all amused for ages. Who would’ve thought that magic tricks (and, admittedly, some tequila - that stuff is the devil's juice) could keep a bunch of thirty-somethings entranced for, well, let’s just say a while.

The other reason I know he is really a wizard – he wiped my mind clear at the end of the evening so I don’t remember his name. I escaped (wildly) at about 3am to go to bed (properly this time) and woke up not remembering his name. This, of course, had nothing to do with the devil's juice and the fact that it was very loud in the DDC, and hard to hear. I did, however, need to rest on Sunday. A lot. I can only be wild in very short bursts these days. Age. Sigh.

And I swear I saw him leave just after I did, burst out of his jeans and t-shirt, revealing a red one-suit with cloak, put his arm in the air, and fly off into the night sky to save the world. Oh dear, am I confusing my super-heroes and magical wizards?

And... one more thing... Which part of Knight-in-Shining-Armour is the universe not getting? I'm not really looking for a wizard (or magician for that matter).

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Insomnia, the BFF visits, and I have a thought

It's that time of month when my boyfriend, Insomnia, creeps into my room, usually in the early hours of the morning, blows on my eyelashes to wake me, then climbs in with me and cuddles up to my back. He's sneaky in the way in which he strokes the back of my neck, lulling me into almost sleep, but then, as I nod off, he prods me, hard, jolting me back to wakefulness. And thought. I have to admit, I'm not minding too much at the moment, I'm thinking alot, and it's okay. For now.

The BFF came over for dinner last night. He has been scarce because he's got back together with his ex-girlfriend and boys are just crap at being able to sustain their friendships when they get into a relationship. I tried to explain the concept that, in fact, keeping up your other friendships when having a relationship with someone actually usually helps to sustain the relationship and keep it healthy. Channelling all your energy into one person is a sure-fire way of exhausting things before their time! I think he may even have got it.

Beside all that (deep?) stuff, it was just nice to hang out with him and talk shit and catch up. I've missed him. He is my BFF and all!

Back to my thinking. My mind often amazes even me. After 34 years, you'd think I'd have got used to it, but, nope... willy-nilly, it'll bring up a thought that surprises me! Honestly, usually it surprises me with it's inaneness and this was a good example. Maybe not inaneness, more, well, I'm not sure of the word. You'd think I'd worry about world hunger or, closer to home, my garage door that isn't working. But, no sirreee, not me!

Basically I got to thinking about what happens to all the deleted letters on computers. You know - when you type something wrong and click on the backspace... Where does the extra "K" go? And now I'm going to sound wierd, I know, but this is my space so I'm allowed to be wierd if I want to. Sometimes I try to just move the letter somewhere else, so it doesn't get relegated to wherever it is lost letters go.

Then I thought that perhaps it's a cool place - like a land of letters. Some amazing island off an unknown coast where they all hang out and move around, creating beautiful words, and then making sentences and wonderful stories, only to break up again and move in other directions and new stories like an ever-changing story wave. I liked that idea so I moved my thoughts elsewhere at that point. I also now feel less bad about my backspace and delete buttons. Phew.

I wonder if I should worry? Or, at least, try and worry about more important things.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

SMS's and a letter

I love getting text messages. I guess everybody does. It's our innate desire to know that somebody is thinking of us. Or mine, at least. Let me not put my over-zealous need for attention onto the entire world. I don't however, wish to know that the bank, or clothing store, or place-that-is-supposedly-giving-cellphones-away-for-free are thinking of me (and the other 45 629 people on their contact list). Just as an aside.

The reason I'm bringing SMS's up, though, is because I have had a series of strange ones in the past 24 hours. Well, okay, just two strange ones, in amongst the normal run-of-the-mill kind. The first was at about 10pm last night - from my ex-therapist. I did a stint of therapy a while ago to try and instill some calm to my mind. I have a lot to say about therapy, my mind changes constantly on whether I'm a true believer in it, or not (perhaps I need therapy for my therapy-issues...)

I liked my therapist, a lot. We became good friends and I could have happily met her for a drink after work to chat, but realised that I was paying a ridiculous amount of money to sit in her lounge and have said chat and that, by the time we came to the end, I would be far wiser to be spending that money on a glass of wine with friends (well, actually, at that price, a really REALLY good bottle of wine, and some dinner. Three course dinner at that) and having the same chat. So I broke up with her. I felt bad. It was the day before Valentine's Day.

The Pond says I get too involved with my therapists (this was my second attempt, the first one kept crying... WTF? It took me a year to break up with her - I didn't want to make her cry. Again.) I can't help it that I'm chatty. Why shouldn't I discuss her boyfriend, her families issues with her boyfriends non-marrying-type issues and... sigh, maybe she's right.

Anyway, back to the point - I got an SMS from her, late last night. It said: Hi there. I have been thinking about you and hoping all is well. Love Maude*. I thought that was sweet, if a bit strange. I am busy formulating a reply in which I shall ask all the pertinent questions about what's happening in her life, with the boyfriend and such. It's just what I do.

The really wierd one came through this morning though. It said: I have my old number back :) Please in future contact me on 079****. Regards Hera*. I don't know anyone called Hera. I riffled through the files stored in the back of my head, you know the ones where you store names, faces, people you meet... Nada, no Hera. Is she some long-lost friend? Somebody I knew at nursery school? Somebody's wife? She must be somebody who's old number I should've had, and who's new number I should use. But for what? Oh dear.

I formulated this reply:

My dearest Hera,

How lovely (and unexpected) to get your message this morning - it's always nice to hear from you, even if it's just a change of contact details. How are things with you? Still working at the same place? Where was it again? (You know me, and my terrible memory!)

I am good, still living here, where you last saw me. When was it we last saw each other? It feels like years, but time flies by so fast, it could've been last week for all I know. Where were we again? And who else was there? (Tsk, this memory of mine).

I hope you are well, how's everybody else doing? Do let me know. And remember to include names, ages, and where I know them from too, please, what with my memory and all.

Much love,
Shiny x

P.S. Should we meet up again soon? It's been too long. I think.

*Name changed to protect her identity. Who calls their child Maude anyway?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

So much to say, too little time

I have been scarce, I know. I was laid low by those bloody bugs, who swapped their studded soccer boots for fluffy slippers (presumably hungover from too much tequila) which tickled my throat and made me cough. Alot. I shan't go into the details of the phlegm produced as it would be gross. Let's just say - lots, urgh.

Then I was overwhelmingly swamped by a whole lot of deadlines for the Other Work and then, joy of joys, I flew up to The Big Smoke to spend the weekend with my sister (she of the ever-expanding-two-babies-in-her-tummy variety) and sister-in-law. She is now 8 months pregnant and looking gorgeous and I spent a lot of time with my cheek pressed to her beautiful belly, being kicked by the babies inside - wierd, wonderful, incredible. They are so contendedly happy and excited about it all, it's fabulous.

While up there I had lunch with an old varsity friend who I've become reaquainted with via this blogging thing and who lives in Tanzania, but is in The Big Smoke to have her baby too - serendipitous indeed. She, too, is looking gorgeously belly-filled and what a treat to catch up with her. Same lunch was joined by R, my previous office-compadre, who left me the dinosaur of the dinosaur and cow fame. I miss her. She's the mother of twins too, so much baby-talk was had and delicious bread-and-butter pudding was eaten by us non-pregnant ones, and devoured by those with babies in their bellies (pregnant women have a different view on food, seriously).

Saturday morning I ventured forth with my parents to visit my lovely aunt in The Littler Smoke next door to The Big Smoke. She's in hospital having a pacemaker put in because she's been walking around with a pulse of 39 for heaven knows how long - they found out doing a routine check up. She thinks she's going to feel like a million dollars and wonder why she didn't do it before. I hope she's right. I don't like hospitals, but was glad to see her.

Then I met up with Clive and Frank at Cranks for dinner, one of my favourite spots in The Big Smoke. And two of my favourite people. It's always so lovely to meet up with people who you know, and who know you, and, no matter how long the gaps are between seeing them, it's just, well, comfortable.

Sunday was spent with my sister-in-law's family in Small Town, SA (which I love, love, love)
- one of those places with wide streets filled with seventies-style shops and people who know each other, although this particular one is, I fear, not quite in the small town category anymore.

And then there were the people I didn't manage to see - quite a few of them damnit, there's always not enough time. Why is that? I think I need to write a letter to someone about it. Luckily the babies are going to arrive next month, necessitating another trip - yey!

I really have so much more to say about all of these things but this post is getting a bit rambling. And I have things to say about the movie, Milk, which I watched recently, and about people's behaviour on planes, and... and... oh, too much! Real Work calls though.

My main thing now, though, is a feeling of terrible displacement. I really feel that there is less and less holding me here, and more and more pulling me toward The Big Smoke, even just temporarily. I just need to find a way to earn a living there (or, alternatively, marry rich, or even just shack-up-rich, seeing as it'll be temporary).

I wonder if there's a speed-dating Facebook site for Temporary Shack-Up-Rich candidates?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bugs and studs

My throat is sore. Like in really sore. I always forget how unpleasant a sore throat is. My colleague gave me my sore throat, as a very kind gift. I know it was him. He came to work yesterday snuffling and whinging like the best man-I'm-dying-of-a-head-cold specimen and, no matter how much I tried to get him and his bug-infested droplets to leave, he wouldn't. And now look.

My main wondering today though, is why sore throats are so much sorer in the dark? Lying in bed last night, snuggling with my man Insomnia, who seems to have brought his luggage this time (I'm hoping he's only planning a short visit), it was really, really sore, as opposed to really sore when I got up this morning.

Are the sore-making bugs nocturnal? The minute you turn off the bedside lamp, there they are, wearing their little soccer studs, dancing away in the back of your throat, drinking and partying. Why they must wear there soccer studs to a party, I don't know. What I do know, though, is that they don't handle their alcohol well - as the night progresses, they drag their little dancing feet more and tend to spill their drinks on said throat too. And it must be tequila, because it stings. Little bastards.

I wonder if it'd help if I kept my light on?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Flying at full moon

I ate my breakfast by candlelight this morning. Which, I suppose could be very romantic, but wasn't. 6:15am breakfast while rushing to get to work does not exactly lend itself to romanticism. Especially not when you are halfway through your Jungle Oats when everything just goes dark. While I'm grateful it waited until I had hot Jungle Oats, I'd have been even more pleased if it had waited until I had left home. I thought I'd been lax (again) with filling the meter but, no, the streetlights were out too. Quite an exciting start to the morning.

But my tale starts before that really. Again, I'm getting ahead of myself.

I went out for dinner last night with my parents and two other couples - old family friends from way back when. All three men are geologists (retired). All three women are geologist's wives (and a lot more, but that's the common thread). I suddenly realised, halfway through the meal, how incredible this scene really was (and is - it happens fairly regularly). There I was, sitting with six people who, when they were around about my age now, all held me as a newborn baby, then watched me grow up.

And this all happened in a small, dusty town over 1000kms away. They now all live within walking distance of each other (again, after moving apart and together at various times, throughout the past 30 years - mining people move. A lot). You see? Incredible. My mother makes friends. And keeps them. I'm lucky to have had her as a role model in this regard - she has passed the gene on.

After a lovely meal with these familiar people, I went off home, planning an early night, due to some rather large piles of Real Work, and Other Work, threatening to take over my desk completely and drown me (a rather unpleasant thought). All went smoothly and I nodded off...

Into the most fantastic dreams in which I flew. Well, more aptly, I seemed to float. I was so bouyant that I had to wedge myself between a lamp post and a tree to stay at a level where I could have a conversation with a girl I was at school with (who I have not seen, nor heard from in about 15 years). Then I flew off with my friend K (the one in Australia) on the lid of a roasting pan. Off above the street we lived in in Grahamstown, until, for some reason I can't remember, I needed to tear off a bum-sized piece of tinfoil from a roll that two other friends from university were using to create some set for a play. Then that became my my magic flying carpet.

They were very jealous of my flying skills and had been trying for ages to get it right for their play, but to no avail. I expressed great sympathy as I flitted away to drop off the dog we shared with K's brother at varsity, who didn't like flying (he was a puppy in the dream, although when we inherited him, he was fully grown), before flying off elsewhere. And then the full moon woke me.

And I lay for two and a half hours, trying desperately to get back in there and fly some more. But my full moon boyfriend, Insomnia, had other plans for me, and we lay awake chatting for hours, discussing my flight etc. while he breathed against the back of my neck. He's a real spooner that one.

And now... I'm attempting to scale the mountains of work, but am a little weary from my busy night.

I wonder if I need to see a dream analyst or if it just means I'd love to fly on the lid of a roasting pan?

Friday, June 5, 2009

This is not a love letter

Okay, so I got temporarily removed from the Real World there for a bit, but am back again and must get onto that Facebook e-mail... I was surprised and amazed by The BFF this morning when he suddenly, quite vociferously over a gentle cup of coffee, told me that I must get back to writing. He wanted to read the (cheesiest of cheesy) story I'm trying very hard to write for my course. This was surprising in that he's never shown an iota of interest before. I denied him the pain of it though.

So, back to my Stalkbook mail. Let me set the scene. When I first put myself on Stalkbook and I was in that initial flush of new Stalkbook love... You know the one, before you start despising the forty three application requests challenging you to compare your IQ to Britney Spears' etc. My best friend, K, who lives in Sydney, and I joined My Aquarium - an application which gave you a fish tank into which you could put all manner of water creatures, kindly bequeathed on you by loving Stalkbook buddies worldwide. Our mission quickly morphed into seeing how full we could make our tanks before they burst or the poor creatures ran out of air. For the record, you can fill a tank with 23 octopi, 4 whales, 102 starfish, 23 goldfish, 45 frilly feral fish (etc), no problem!

Needless to say, the novelty of My Aquarium wore off once we realised the thing would never burst, releasing hundreds of (possibly feral) sea creatures into the pages of Stalkbook... I had, admittedly forgotten about it until I received this mail last week:

We have decided to focus on something more exciting. My Aquarium's name and functionality will be changed next week to SpeedDate, a fun way to meet new people. Data entered into the original app won't be used anymore. Feel free to check it out.

My Aquarium

Hysterical. The aquarium people have given up on fish and moved onto dating. And they're assuming we all want to too. A letter formed in my head:

Dear My Aquarium Speed Daters,

Thank you so much for your e-mail last week. First I feel I must apologise profusely for neglecting my (rather full) aquarium after losing interest in it completely sometime last year. It's just that, well, I got bored whenI realised it'd never burst from over-fullness. Sorry to be so blatant, but my mother has always said one should be completely honest, no matter what. Another thing she taught us, though, was to tend to our pets carefully, so I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't say anything to her about the complete neglect I have shown to all my watery friends.

But back to the point - while I think it's very kind of you to take such an interest in my love life, I'm not sure I'm interested in Stalkbook Speed-dating really. In fact, honestly, I'm completely not. I'm fascinated, though, in how you made the connection between aquariums and dating. Please let me know.

In the meantime, I'd prefer not to move from virtual table to virtual table having five-minute virtual conversations with virtual people so that I can find my virtual match and, presumably, eventually land up getting virtually married, having two virtual children, and living happily ever after in a virtual house with a virtual white picket fence. As nice as that sounds, of course. Unless... there's something virtually enticing about it. Like maybe being able to make the ones who are virtually not worth spending time with burst, by giving them too many virtual peanuts and virtual whisky. Just a thought.

Thanks for caring though, it's very sweet of you, really. Please remove me from your mailing list immediately, I get enough bloody spam already, ta.

Lots of (non-speed-dating) love,
Shiny x

Or is this a sign?