Sunday, 13 January 2008


After sending my parents off home, it was time to get my life back into some semblance of order. I spent all day Monday picking up and reorganising. I also got paint for the upstairs bathroom, which desperately needed a facelift. I'm keeping it yellow, but just gave it a fresh coat of paint. I didn't manage to get anything actually painted, but I did manage to get the shelves all down and everything taped up in preparation. Tuesday was a little more successful: I got all the walls painted :) Hooray! It needed a second coat in one spot (where the previous occupants had not painted over the ghastly green which underlay the sprightly yellow) but it was in pretty good shape.

Tuesday was also the birthday of one of the West Gang. The Wests have taken me into their family. They're marvelous. It was Elliot's 15th, and I made a birthday cake for him. I didn't think it was anything all that special, but you'd never guess that from the reactions I got when I arrived! Jonny was my favourite, I think. He followed his mom into the entry way, saw the cake, and exclaimed, "Wow!" Adoration is pretty great :D

Wednesday was a foray into London. My best friend is a Siderodromophobic (that's she's afraid to travel by train), so she asked me to come along to London with her to meet some friends from her undergrad for lunch. So we met at the train station and jumped on a train for Liverpool Street Station, with the intention of meeting Ian, Alex and Jemma in London. Somehow Alex did not manage to get the message out to anyone that he was deathly ill, so Ian, Jenny and I waited around for quite some time before finally giving up and getting something to eat. I pulled a traditional Adele stunt: fell off my flat shoes on flat pavement! I managed to bruise the ankle bone! 5 days later I'm still suffering from it. Eventually Alex did manage to let us know he was not going to show, and Jemma rang to say she was done with lecture, where should we meet? So Jenny, Ian and I met up with Jemma and headed off to the Science Museum on Exhibition Road. After an entertaining afternoon seeing what the future may hold, we separated at South Kensington Tube Station.

Wednesday was the highlight. Or possibly the lowlight. It is for Wednesday that I have named my entry for this week. Detritus. The OED (that's Oxford English Dictionary for those of you philistines who use anything else) defines it as "a product of disintegration, destruction, or wearing away". This is a case of destruction. In my quest for order and cleanliness I ran up to gather a load for the washing machine. Unfortunately, I forgot that the bird was on his playpen, not in his cage. So I ran up the stairs, separated out the lights and the darks, came back down, loaded the machine, started the machine, and came back to the lounge.

And discovered mayhem! Hamish, my Dutch Aqua Peach Faced (he's too young for the peach face to have come in yet) Lovebird had made lunch out of my keyboard. He'd grabbed the opportunity presented by my inattention to detail and flown with it! He has this fascination with computers in general, and keyboards specifically. The first thing I did was grab the key he'd just yanked it up. At which point he growled at me! The audacity! When I discovered he'd already stripped the back of the little nobly bits which are what hold the key case to the plastic bit underneath, I gave it back to him, and grabbed my camera. He's such a rotten fink! He got 14 keys off, and the underkey of one of them, making it exceedingly difficult to use the right arrow key. Fortunately, all he got were the function 'F' keys, and the 'Delete' 'Home' 'End' etc... keys from the upper right corner. Also fortunately, I know where they are, so I can still type as normal.

Thursday I spent repainting the bathroom (a piece of the paint had pealed off when I took the tape off) and getting the second coat on that bit that needed it. And doing the ceiling, the trim and the door.

Friday I picked up Camilla (another of the West Clan) for an evening of Scrapbooking. We had a great time together. It was good fun. Made Taco Casserole for us for dinner. Claire (housemate) has been having a rough week (month, holiday, term, PhD....) so it was a treat for her, when she got back to the house.

Saturday I got a frantic phone call from Jenny. Her mother had lost the keys to the car (happened to be Jenny's keys and Jenny's car) in town, and Jenny was stuck out on Mersea Island. So I went and picked up Jenny's gran and took her out to the Island. When we got out there, Jenny met us at the house, and helped unload the shopping...... and uncovered the keys! So after my impression of a superhero (rescuing the helpless) I zipped off to the Wests for a date with the girls. Mum and Dad West had taken the boys (for Elliot's birthday) to a bike park. So Camilla and Hannah and I went to the cinema. We saw Enchanted. Then I rushed off to a birthday party in Wivenhoe. Met Jenny there, and had a laugh withs some friends, couple of Diet Cokes, and a bit of dancing before returning home and (hooray hooray) a bit of sleep.

Today's been quiet. Not much to report.

Tomorrow it's back to the mill. Term starts tomorrow, and I get the pleasure of 25 or 30 3,000 word essays to mark. Loads of fun. I love teaching, and don't really mind the marking, but it is a lot of work. It's just going to be a huge shock to the system, having to get back into a routine. Never mind. I really do love it.


Heather said...

That's one resourceful bird! At least he didn't take out any letter keys. That cake is snazzy, especially the E. I'm so glad you have such a great "adoptive" family to hang with. Good luck with all those essays--I hope more than a few of them are interesting and well-written! :)

Vanessa said...

What a great read. We feel privileged to feature so often! (In your blog and as recipients of your kindness!) The cake certainly tasted as good as it looked! Thanks for adding so much to our family life as the newest member of it!

Coila said...

Wow, what a prankster your little birdie is! Sounds like things are going well and you're busy as usual. I like yellow for that bathroom. Is it the same yellow?