Cabin fever

I’ve tried to have a ‘not doing anything’ day (i.e. just mindless internet browsing and so on) today in order to try and recover from my cold. Not doing anything, it turns out, just makes me feel frustrated and bored, like I’ve wasted the day. I’ve got a show at the Sage Gateshead to go to tomorrow afternoon, and although I will have to wrap up warm, I think I’m going to feel a bit better for getting out.

Also, there’s a loose connection in my laptop mouse, and it keeps beeping every five seconds to inform me that it’s either just connected or disconnected. Time to order a new one, I think. In the meantime, I’ve just given up and turned my laptop volume off.

Big Kahuna glass
Not an OOTD: Geth was given some Kona Brewery beers as an early Christmas present from a colleague, so he dug out his souvenir Big Kahuna glass from the time we went to Hawaii. It’s making me long for tropical islands and sunshine, which is NOT the way I usually feel in December when I’m excited about Christmas coming up! I’ve been researching some traditional Hawaiian ukulele music as a result.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Gary Glitter – ‘Another Rock ‘N’ Roll Christmas’*
Kuana Torres Kahele, James Ford Murphy and Napua Greig-Nakasone – ‘Someone To Lava’
Coldplay – ‘Christmas Lights’
Bananarama – ‘Really Saying Something’

*Yes, it’s STILL in my head.

Back in the toon

I travelled back to Newcastle first thing this morning (although I didn’t go to Slimming World because (a) I had a few last-minute clients with urgent deadlines today and (b) I’m really struggling with my cold today – wish it would just go away now). Have had a nice quiet day playing my ukulele and catching up with Strictly episodes!

Tomorrow will be all about staying in the house and trying to knock this thing on the head!

Concert ukulele
Not an OOTD: after a whole term of only playing my soprano ukulele (because it was the one I was using for class and I thought it was probably better to keep practising on the same one), it was nice to dig out my concert uke today. I’m hoping I’ll have a gig bag for it soon so that I can carry it around more easily!

Today’s earworm playlist:

Jennifer Rush – ‘The Power Of Love’
Coca-Cola – ‘Holidays Are Coming’
Lewis Capaldi – ‘Someone You Loved’
The White Stripes – ‘Seven Nation Army’
Gary Glitter – ‘Another Rock ‘N’ Roll Christmas’*
Kuana Torres Kahele, James Ford Murphy and Napua Greig-Nakasone – ‘Someone To Lava’

*I KNOW. You never hear it anymore (because… Gary Glitter) but it’s on the That’s Christmas compilation album from 1994, which I listen to every year when I’m doing Mum and Dad’s decorations, and it’s REALLY catchy.

Phone Box Thursday: Kirkgunzeon Lane, Kirkgunzeon

Here’s a rural Dumfriesshire phone box that Mum and Dad found back in the summer.

Red phone box
Red phone box, Kirkgunzeon Lane, Kirkgunzeon, 20th July 2019.

(Coordinates 54°98’26.5″N, 3°77’06.4″W.)

Looking at the Google Street View image, it seems that pretty much nothing has changed about this phone box (or its surroundings) in the last ten years (well, apart from the small detail of the phone inside having been removed)… which is kind of nice!

Another day of shiny things

I’m still in Edinburgh (Geth is holding the fort at home, and reports that my paper chains haven’t fallen down yet, which is a real victory as they’re a bit delicate – will be reinforcing them at the end of the Christmas period), and still feeling a bit ill. However, it’s been a good day – I went to my yearly dental checkup this morning (the main reason I’m in town – the Christmas stuff is a bonus), did some more decorating of Mum and Dad’s house this afternoon, and then caught up with my cousin Freya this evening.

A very early train back to Newcastle tomorrow morning so that I can pop into my Slimming World group before heading home.

BBC Micro
Not an OOTD: Dad also dug out the Micro today. We confirmed it works and everything! Looking forward to having a play with this over Christmas when I bring the disks up from Newcastle.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Coldplay – ‘Christmas Lights’
The Midnight and Nikki Flores – ‘Light Years’
Phil Collins – ‘Another Day In Paradise’

Tree hopping

It is the week of tree decorating, and I’m finding that despite my cold, I can occasionally stand up long enough to put some ornaments on there! I’ve not done my main tree at home yet, but I did do my ‘upstairs tree’ this morning (it’s an old one I’ve had since 1994 that still scrubs up nicely with a bit of tinsel and some lights!), and I headed to Edinburgh today to decorate Mum and Dad’s tree for them. The seventy-year-old ornament collection is still gradually expanding, and I put 140 of them on the tree this year!

More trees to decorate over the next few days…

Christmas tree 2019
Not an OOTD: it’s the ornament collection, seventy years in the making, that makes Mum and Dad’s tree so special. I’m not bad at finding branches for them, though, if I do say so myself!

Today’s earworm playlist:

Coldplay – ‘Christmas Lights’
The Ronettes – ‘Chapel Of Love’
Duran Duran – ‘Femme Fatale’
Sheena Easton – ‘For Your Eyes Only’
The Midnight and Nikki Flores – ‘Light Years’
Take That – ‘Babe’
The Beatles – ‘Drive My Car’

A recovery day

I still feel pretty rotten, but having had a day on the sofa today, I think I’m just about starting to recover from my cold now. I’ll be out in the open air again tomorrow, so fingers crossed it won’t be quite as frosty as it has been recently.

On the plus side, I did get a lot of online Christmas shopping done today!

Christmas decorations
Not an OOTD: the Christmas decorations are out if not quite up yet! Bonus Strictly catchup on the TV too. I’ll get a bit of decorating done tomorrow before I head out.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – ‘Falling Down’
Ariana Grande – ‘Thank You Next’
The Police – ‘Don’t Stand So Close To Me’
Sailor – ‘A Glass Of Champagne’
Slade – ‘Cum On Feel The Noize’

Quarter capacity at most…

…is the best way I can describe my brain right now. This cold has really knocked me out.

I don’t think it helped that I ventured out in the sub-freezing temperatures this evening in order to attend the Slimming World opportunities event. It was useful and informative, and I’ve signed up to find out more, but it was a real struggle walking back and forth from the Metro (especially as all of Newcastle is an ice rink at the moment!). Tomorrow will be all about staying in and keeping warm.

OOTD 1st December 2019
OOTD: I may be only sometimes conscious and also simultaneously too hot and too cold under my blanket, but at least I got to wear my snowflake jumper for the first time this winter today. Jumper unknown brand (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2019).

Today’s earworm playlist:

John Williams – ‘Across The Stars’
Duran Duran – ‘My Antarctica’
Destiny’s Child – ‘8 Days Of Christmas’

Annual viral inconvenience

I didn’t end up parkrunning today, because I came down with a cold overnight. It’s exactly a year since I last had an inconveniently-timed cold (it was the 30th November last year that Geth and I headed to Electric Dreams), although thinking about it I suppose there’s no such thing as a conveniently-timed one.

Because of some flu-like dizzy symptoms, it was a tough day finishing my NaNoWriMo project. Nevertheless, I hit the 50k, making 2019 my sixth win out of eight attempts, and my fifth in a row! Going to take a few days off from creative writing in order to give my brain a bit of a break.

Hoping to feel a little better tomorrow, as I’m not looking forward to going out in the cold right now!

Cold medicine
Not an OOTD: this stash that Geth brought home is making me feel marginally more alive.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – ‘(I’m Looking For) Cracks In The Pavement’
Duran Duran – ‘My Antarctica’
Andy Taylor – ‘Bringin’ Me Down’
Duran Duran – ‘Falling Down’


So this morning I had roughly 8,000 words still to go on my NaNoWriMo project. I now have 4,000 to go, so am on track. Once I’m back from parkrun tomorrow (this is assuming Jesmond Dene is still on in the icy conditions… *update – just as I was writing this, Facebook informed me that Jesmond Dene is off, so I don’t know where I’ll be parkrunning tomorrow if anywhere!*), I’ll get stuck into it and get it finished.

Sunday’s going to be busy as well – I’ll be getting the Christmas decorations out, and also going to a Slimming World consultant opportunities event to see if it’s something I might be interested in doing – so it looks like it’ll be Monday before I can have that long-awaited post-NaNo gaming day on the sofa. Of course, I might be itching to get into the next project by then…

Hotel phone
Not an OOTD: as a retro phone fan, I do appreciate that hotel room phones always look as if they were installed several decades ago. The one in my London hotel room on Wednesday night was burnished in this fetching ‘late 20th century beige’.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – ‘Hungry Like The Wolf’
Cast of The Muppets – ‘Mahna Mahna’
Andy Taylor – ‘Love Or Liberation’
The Power Station – ‘Get It On’

Back from my tropical mini-break

London was lovely and warm. I was able to go out in just a thin jacket last night and everything! It reminded me of when I lived in Southampton and didn’t wear coats for four years solid. Back in the nippy north now, which feels a bit more right for late November.

The Andy Taylor gig was amazing – I’ll write a bit more about that next week when I’ve had time to think about it!

Things will be fairly nonstop for the next few days (especially in terms of finishing my NaNo – eek), but I’m currently eyeing up a possible day off on Monday, which will give me a chance to get organised again.

Train plug socket
Not an OOTD: I’m always fascinated by this notice they have next to the plug sockets on trains. You just know that it’s there because someone was ACTUALLY stupid enough to plug in a toaster or hairdryer at some point.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – ‘Ball Of Confusion’
Andy Taylor – ‘Tremblin”
Ramz – ‘Barking’
‘Korobeiniki’ (the Tetris theme music)
Andy Taylor – ‘Love Or Liberation’
Zack Laurence – ‘Force Field (The Crystal Maze Main Theme)’
Barbra Streisand – ‘Woman In Love’
Duran Duran – ‘Hungry Like The Wolf’