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My bonkers life…

I am foolish. But then that’s no great surprise. Who in their right mind would think that a new job and a full on production of Macbeth would be a good idea when taken at exactly the same time. To get your head a round one of the two would be bad enough but to be doing both at once was complete lunacy!

The following photos were taken weeks ago at a time when I hadn’t grasped the full idiocy of what I had done. They show the garden in full blossom all long since disappeared but here they are anyway…

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It was all fabulous until the winds came and it looked as though we’d had a massive confetti fuelled wedding in the garden – all gone in a flash!
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All of it’s now completely gone which is a bit sad but then the geraniums and those ‘yellow things'(whatever they are) have taken over and plugged the gaps.

Anyway, there it all was.

The small people came for a couple of visits and some making and doing sessions which was lovely and really why this flexi time part time thing sounded like a good idea (the reality is somewhat different but will hopefully calm down when I now what I’m doing she said optimistically) when it was mooted – to see more of them. They do make me laugh so much – all their little idiosyncracies and funny sayings. They knacker me out too and I get precisely nothing at all done whilst they’re here but hey, life’s too short sometimes for chores and they do give the best cuddles ever!

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They do love a bit of cutting and sticking and it’s amazing how much pleasure can be got from a box of buttons – simple pleasures.

And so what of the new job? I’ve been here there and everywhere meeting some really great people here on the sunny Isle, doing interviews and then fashioning it all into some kind of cohesive prose. I am absolutely loving it and now that the postmodern, all female, punk version of Macbeth is over I can begin to enjoy it even more. To be given something to do that you really love is a great feeling and a bit of a privilege and I am very conscious of that. The treats aren’t bad either and Friday saw myself and the editor at a cocktail bar for a lesson and a spot of high tea which was fab.

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Photoshoots are great fun and we’re going to be doing a behind the scenes piece so I’m there taking photos of the photo taking and learning as I go along

The cocktails weren’t half bad

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And as for the tea. Well…..

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I think I’ve finally found my calling!

My blog…

…is horribly out of date for which my apologies to those of you who’ve been tuning in the hopes of an update. This is due to overwork and lack of time.

I will make amends at the weekend.

Promise

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I always think that it’s amazing that in the 13 years that I’ve lived here on the sunny Isle there are still places that I’ve never been to. Newtown is one of those.

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From the woods which are full of bluebells and wood anemones…

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…to the marshes which are the breeding grounds for all sorts of birds…

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We managed 5 miles in all and my target of 10,000 steps a day soared to new heights! SONY DSCIt was peaceful

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There were boats

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And all manner of interesting things to look at

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The village is pretty too and we did a circuitous route to make the most of it all

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We walked off too much wine the night before, too many chips and a bank holiday argument and felt much better all round

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And sometimes that’s just what you need!

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A garden visit

I very rarely meet my fellow bloggers but there are one or two who live here on the sunny Isle. Bryony who is a fellow Islander came round during the week last week to collect some cuttings that I’d potted up for her and chew the fat a bit. It was lovely and she very kindly wrote about it here on her blog Rusty Rambles.

Have a look at her lovely blog. And her husband’s wonderful photos. They are a clever pair!

When I was a teenager many moons ago in rural Ireland I had dreams like every other teenage girl my age. I wanted to meet rock stars, have a ‘boy next door boyfriend’ so beloved of Jackie columnists, shop at Topshop and Miss Selfridge and Chelsea Girl (non existent in those days in Ireland) and wear make up properly, lose weight and go clubbing. Unfortunately I lived, as I say, in rural Ireland where the nearest neighbour, a farmer in his 70s, was a mile away, the nearest village 3 miles away and the shopping mecca of Dublin 50 miles away so precisely none of this ever happened.

So I lived my teenage fantasies out through magazines which in themselves were in short supply and had to be ordered specially from the newsagents to be delivered at least three weeks after their publication date. From my little room at the top of the Wicklow mountains I devoured copies of Jackie (every girl’s staple for knowing what was what) and Smash Hits with its printed song lyrics and pull out posters for bedroom walls.

Cathy and Claire, the Jackie agony aunts  gave an address of King’s Reach Tower in London and I wondered where that might be. Of course this being eons ago there was no internet or Google so I wondered on for many years until I ended up working there myself in a bizarre quirk of fate on Classic Cars Magazine and so the wondering on that count was over. But what of Smash Hits?

At the time of my reading, there was a rather handsome editor called Mark Ellen in charge and I gazed at his picture and wondered (again) what he was like and how he got to be in the exalted position of editor. He seemed terribly knowledgable and interesting and I longed to meet him, just for a minute so that I could reassure myself that he was all that he seemed. Fast forward about 15 more years and in another bizarre quirk of fate I bumped into a friend in Soho and who should she be with but the man himself. It’s inevitable isn’t it, that at the moment when you want to seem nonchalant and cool you blow it completely and gush that you’d had a HUGE crush on this bemused man and that you were so thrilled to meet him…coolness was ever one of my twentysomething attributes.

And then. Just a couple of weeks ago over on Twitter, Mr Ellen was giving away some rather fantastic things from his attic and so we began a little correspondence. I admitted to my crush, he didn’t run away screaming, I won none of his prizes and asked (reasonably coolly) for a signed copy of Smash Hits as a consolation prize as it were. I have since read of his great charm in interviews and book reviews and this charm has been extended to me because just last week a signed copy of this landed on the mat.

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He also sent a lovely e mail making sure that I’d received it. They say that you should never meet your heroes and OK if we’re being honest here I did disgrace myself somewhat by gushing when we did meet briefly but I think that I’ve redeemed myself sufficiently. The mag will be framed and I shall hang it next to a vintage Isle of Wight Festival poster because that seems kind of fitting. I know that this might sound like the worst sort of sad muppetry to some but as it just so happens I have recently been made Deputy Editor of a magazine here on the sunny Isle – Style of Wight and I like to think that the path was set  for me all those years ago in my little bedroom in Ireland with Cathy and Claire and of course the very charming Mark Ellen.

Sprung Spring

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I do so love the spring. And the autumn actually too. They are the natural beginning and natural winding up of the outdoor year in the garden and the countryside and they make me feel optimistic on one hand and ready to hibernate on the other.

It was a lovely weekend here on the sunny Isle and having got all my tedious chores out of the way, it seemed a good time to have a look at the back of the seed packets and see what could be started.

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I have been reminded by a small person that she like to help so I only potted up the most pressing – some climbing beans, broad beans, sweet peas and summer savoury. TG made me a cold frame from an old box and some glass which is now full of salad in trays but which needed to be thoroughly checked out by Madam Rainbow in advance

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She was enjoying the sunshine too and so loves it when there’s someone in the garden that she can stalk keep company!

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It’s looking very yellow outside with all the primroses and daffs out

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It was just what I needed after feeling below par for much of last week (there are so many bugs going around!) and getting some bits and pieces planted always makes me feel happy. Spring in my garden and in a spring my step!

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Irony

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It’s amazing isn’t it. I’ve spent so much time writing for other people that I have completely neglected the very thing that got me started in the first place! Not that I’m complaining you understand. It has been a whirligig of a few weeks  and the next few promise to be the same. I have gone from a standing start to something that even my nearest and dearest are surprised at and I’m loving it. But I thought, as I’m in between issues, I’d better get on with a bit of an update on here.

Sadly nothing of any great consequence has occurred apart from the usual work, domestic bliss and a couple of nights out. There is a play on the go which I am struggling with time to learn the lines for and then another one after that…the all female Macbeth in which I shall play Banquo who thankfully carks it halfway through thus giving me only half a play’s worth of lines to learn and then a bit of ghostly drifting about to finish off with.

Me an TG have got out and about a bit and according to the Other Child my Victoria sandwich is going in the right direction, such has been the levels of my stomping around woods and beaches and getting my steps up to 10,000 a day. I have an app on my phone which not only measures your steps but also nags you via an hourly message to ‘get moving’ if you’ve been idle too long. Sort of like having your mother permanently in your pocket….

Anyway, we got out over the weekend to Yarmouth and did a 4 mile circuitous route which was rather nice with a quick stop off at the Red Lion for a coffee and a chat.

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It’s a favourite walk of mine because you start off at one side of the inlet in the woods and fields and end up on the other side in the marshes back to where you started. We met a little friend on our travels who was very sweet and up for a scratch and a pat on the nose.

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It was a good stretch and just what the ‘I’ve been stuck at a desk’ doctor ordered.

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I must just show you a couple of other things. Completely unrelated to the above but fun. I did a photo shoot which I borrowed the props for and styled (get me!) and I took a couple of quick snaps on my phone just to see how it might look…

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It was all terribly exciting!

On my way back from prop drop off I came upon this fine fellow – one of 12 living at Calbourne water mill. They were quite a sight when I pulled up and were all milling about but this one posed perfectly.

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Amazing eh?

So that’s it really. I’m not dead, buried under something heavy or gone away just in case you’d been fretting. Life is moving on at an incredible pace and sometimes it’s a struggle to keep up! But I shall endeavour to. Really I will.

 

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