A Canadian gal living in Britain with 3 men and a dog. Wine helps.

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Monday, February 27, 2006

Who's Holding Who?

Triple The Love

I've Been Tagged...

Four Jobs I've Had: Burger King Drive-thru; Shirt Presser at a Dry Cleaner's; Mail Room/Photocopy Clerk, Day Care Worker

Four Movies I Could Watch Over and Over: Stand By Me; The Princess Bride; Gladiator; About a Boy

Four Places I Have Lived: Argentia NF; Halifax NS; Beaverbank NS; New Waltham, England

Four Albums I Can't Hear Too Often: James Blunt - Back To Bedlam; Jimmy Rankin - Song Dog; Alanis - Under Rug Swept; Tim McGraw GH2;

Four Places I Have Vacationed: Dominican Republic; Greece; Venice; Mexico.

Four TV Shows I Love: Lost; Prison Break; Everybody Loves Raymond; ER.

Four Of My Favorite Foods: BBQ Pizza; Stir-fry; Chips (fries)and Gravy; B&J Choco Chip Cookie Dough Ice-cream.

Four Websites I Visit Daily: My blog list, hotmail.com; The Halifax Chronicle Herald; Various Job Sites

Four Places I'd Rather Be Right Now: Swimming in the ocean under a hot sun; Drinking in a pub with friends; At the movies; With Andy - he's away again.

Now I'm tagging Dawn, Stacy, Jeff and Jaime

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Just another day... In the Ghetto that is

Today I was notified by a member of staff working in a portacabin just outside the main doors of the building that there was a fellow in a white ball cap lurking behind the fence with a rifle style gun. He was not only lurking, he had the gun pointed through the slats of the fence towards the car park and main entrance to the building.

Naturally there was no sight of him by the time security made their tortoise like way to our clinic, and the police also saw no sign of him. However past occurrences would prove that there is indeed a trigger happy idiot who creeps around our clinic as the windows of an office have had shots fired through it. Hrrmmm. Time to seriously start looking for other employment I would think.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Ever wish you could just turn back time, if only by 30 seconds?

Bleach is a very bad word when it comes to my vocabulary. I usually prefer to do all my own laundry because if something goes wrong, I only have myself to blame. My mother used to do all my laundry, as well as my four siblings, my father's and her own. That is a lot of laundry to get through and she was a good woman to do it all, without complaint. In later years, I noticed from time to time that the odd piece of clothing would come back with a bleach mark on it. Normally something I adored. I know that Stacy has had this problem from time to time as well. Sometimes when my husband, who always seems to have the washer on, kindly washes my clothes, the delicate white laundry has come back grey. Thus, I prefer to do at least my delicates myself.

When someone is good enough to do your laundry for you, and you are lazy enough to let them, damaged clothing is a risk you have to be willing to take. More times then not with mom (and Andy), the clothes would be fine, but for about the past 10 years or so, I'd just gotten into the habit of doing my own. And I never use bleach - at least in my laundry. I do own a bottle, as sometimes general cleaning agents just don't do the job in the kitchen/bathroom that bleach will do, however if I make the mistake of using bleach, I always wreck whatever I happen to be wearing. You'd think I'd learn by now to change into something old. (Normally I do.) However the other day I took on a task that Andy normally does, and decided to wash down the back patio area where Molly makes her mess. Andy uses a cleaning agent with bleach and I stupidly poured (splashed) it onto the patio, thus splashing it all over my new pants. G-R-E-A-T. If there was ever a moment in time where I wished I could press the rewind button, this was it. Unfortunately there isn't a rewind button for stupid behaviour.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Weekend Update:

I had taken Friday off in order for my friend Helen and I to go shopping to Meadowhall, a huge shopping complex in Sheffield. For £13 we were able to purchase a return day ticket. Much better than driving I think.

We arrived at the mall around 11 a.m. and hit the shops with much gutso. There were plenty of sales on and we both came out with at least two shopping bags. I was over excited to hit H&M and came out with one full outfit, however was bitterly disappointed as a) the selection wasn't great and b) a top that I loved didn't fit me. Of course they didn't have the next size up. I don't know if it's me, but I do find some of the clothes there made very small, although I never have a problem with skirt sizing.

We had a light lunch and then headed to the pub for a half-pint before moving on. Around 5 we'd decided we'd had enough and went to M&S to buy a picnic lunch avec wine for the train journey home. We enjoyed our sandwiches and wine and of course I ordered another small bottle of wine from the trolley. When we got off the train we headed into the pub next door for one more drink while we waited for Helen's husband to pick us up. They both came in for a drink with Andy and I before we all called it a night.

Family Time

On Saturday we took the three kids to visit Andy's sister Claire, who had fallen and broken her ankle last week. She was in great spirits and we had a very relaxing and enjoyable time sitting at the table with Claire and two of the other ladies in the group home putting puzzles together. It's times like these when I think I'm in the wrong career - I love spending time with Claire and her friends. However I do know just how hard carers work and its not all fun and games. However I can go see Claire whenever I want - she really is a joy to be around (when she's in a good mood that is, lol)and I think having a family member who isn't healthy certainly puts a different perspective on life.

We decided to go to Hull for lunch and ended up pigging out at Frankie and Benny's. Surprisingly, I could still fit into a size 14 (size 10 in Canada) jeans when we went shopping at a designer outlet in Hornsea. All the kids came away happy as Tasha got a pair of jeans as well and we bought the boys gorgeous winter jackets that were marked down from £50 to £12.99.

One Naked Stravos, 40 Girls, One Tighty Whitey and a Dance Pole

We had to rush to get home as I was going out with Helen on a Hen Night for one of the District Nurses out of her clinic. We met at the local pub where a bus was taking us on to Louth, a town about 25 minutes away. What a scene we all made, approximately 40 women, walking into the Italian restaurant, one sporting a naked blow up doll with a full-blown woody. We took up two long tables at the back of the restaurant, while the third was occupied with a group of children celebrating a birthday. They were all laughing gleefully upon our arrival and were very excited to find out which of us was getting married. When the little boy was brought his cake, he was sung happy birthday by the whole group of us, which in turn silenced the whole restaurant. He turned a bright shade of red when one of our ladies ran over and gave him a kiss.

We left the pizzeria completely stuffed and made our way along the streets to the first pub. On the way we passed a very posh restaurant full of people enjoying fine dining. Someone shouted out for Tina (the Hen) to show them her Stravos (the naked doll) and she cheekily held him up to the window as we walked along. The faces on some of the diners were absolutely priceless. The first pub we arrived at was playing good dance music so everyone grabbed a drink and made their way to the dance floor. I knew by this point that with the amount of food we had eaten, there was no way in hell I was gonna be able to drink much. I was just too full. I was enjoying the antics of an obviously gay fellow gyrating with all the ladies, some of who very clearly weren't picking up on the fact that he was sooo gay, which I rather enjoyed. I often miss all the gay boys from Halifax - they are tons of fun and always up for a good laugh, something you rarely see in my local area. There was also a gal on the dance floor with the tightest, whitest jeans I have ever seen. More than painted on. What made it even funnier was when Helen pointed out she had a camel's toe. Now I wasn't sure if that expression meant what I thought it did, as it's been so long since I heard it, and I didn't want to look, but through my laughter I couldn't help myself. And she was right! It did mean what I thought it did! Nasty!!! God I don't think I've seen one of those since the 80's.

About 45 minutes after we were moved on to the next club, which was to be the last visit on our night out as we had been told we needed to get to this particular place early as we would be in line ups all night if not. Along the way to this club, we passed a group of men and I was floored when I heard my friend Helen yell out "Come on boys, get your cocks out!" Now this is a phrase I had once heard my fiery little sister-in-law holler unexpectedly, and that surprised me, however hearing Helen yell it out completely stopped me in my tracks. I turned and asked her if she'd really said what I thought she did. She laughed. Wonders will never cease to amaze me! Here is the girl who told me she thought the photos Andy took of me on my birthday were 'rude' yet she’s yelling this to a bunch of lads. Go figure! What a laugh.

The club itself was trendy and modern and played good enough music, they even had a pole in the middle of the dance floor that the more adventurous would shimmy around, however this I'm afraid was the most exciting aspect of this particular club. (Other than the very nice and good-looking bartender). I believe that by 10:30/11:00 most of the ladies were a little tired as we had been expecting more than two venues and of course when you have a big meal, it doesn't bode well for a night of drinking. Helen and I made small talk with a few nurses, amused ourselves chatting to a few of the younger crowd and of course danced a few songs to try and pass the time away more quickly. When we got on the bus to take us back to town at 12:55 we were all ready for it. Partying in another town was fun, and it was good to see what the pubs/clubs were like, however I think I'll stick to going out closer to home as I can always jump in a cab or ring Andy to take me home after I've had enough.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Always remember to read the small print

This afternoon around 3:30, after lazing around for the better part of the afternoon, I decided to take Molly off to the beach for a long refreshing walk. We parked up in the mobile home summer caravan park where Andy always used to take me in the summer and off we went. We left the car at approximately 3:50. Although it was slightly overcast, there wasn't a breeze, and the water was very calm, which made for a gorgeous stroll on the beach. After romping in the water, losing our ball (and thrower),and clumsily playing with two extraordinary huge dogs whose only threat of hurting Molly was the fact they might slobber her to death, we made our way back to the car. I was feeling refreshed and looking forward to a nice relaxing evening but as I pulled off the grass parking area and made my way around the bend in the road I was stunned to see the park gates had been shut with a small notice stuck to it saying that in January and February the park gates are closed and locked at 4:00 p.m. and wouldn't open until 9:30 a.m. the next morning. For the second time in this country, I had the pleasure of finding myself behind locked gates.

Luckily, I had my phone with me so that I could call the number on the sign to have a warden come and release me for the extortionate fee of £30. I also rang Andy to see if there might be another way out of the park but unfortunately there wasn't as far as he was aware. I took a drive around just to make sure and along the way encountered a lovely retired couple who were out walking and tried to help me find an alternative route out of the park. (They had known to park there car on the other side of the gates.) Leaving the car behind and walking home was not an option as a) I live too far away and both Moll and I were wet and it was fastly becoming dark, and b) the car might not be in the same condition when I got back to retrieve it the next day as vandalism is high in the area.

The phone call to the council was a bit ridiculous as the guy on the other end, although slightly sympathetic, kept insisting I'd have to pay the fine and did I have the cash to do so. Of course I didn't, I was walking the dog, not shopping. He then moved on to ask if I had a credit card. Let me see, I don't carry more than a fiver on me while out for a stroll, but yup, I keep my credit card in the back pocket just in case I need to make a transaction from a tree. He then moved on to ask if I could give him a number of a relative to verify who I was. At this point I got pretty incensed and said 'look, I know I have to pay the fine, I should have read the puny signs, but I didn't so here I am, alone in the dark in a deserted caravan park and your worried about the fine. Send someone to get me out and you can send me the bill, you have my registration number in case you don't believe the address I will supply is legit.' He asked me to wait while he called a truck and then informed me it could be 30-40 minutes. Naturally, I would wait, where exactly could I go?

fter half an hour, 3 vehicles pulled up on the other side of the barrier. An official looking man in plain clothes walked over and asked me what happened and if I was waiting for the warden to let me out. I conceded. He walked over to the gate, undid it to let other cars gain entry, then waved me through without another word. Will I receive a bill in the mail? Or will it prove lucky that someone other than the warden let me out? Probably not, the council still has my info, but we shall see in a few days time.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

When you have absolutely nothing to say...

Subway opened in town on February 3rd. Over two-and-a-half years of agonizing waiting are finally over. Andy and I naturally lunched there both Saturday and Sunday. The kids and I will be taking another trip there this weekend I'm sure. They are well versed by now that Jojo might say no to McDonald's but the likelihood of her saying no to a much more healthy option such as Subway is practically non-existent.

Andy and I haven't been up to too much this past week besides trying to stay on a healthier eating plan and going for long walks with the dog. The boys now stay with us on Wednesday nights and enjoyed taking Molly for a walk this morning before school.

In other news, IT have stopped access to personal web pages at work, and it now looks as if they are trying to keep staff off the internet all around, however that makes no sense as they have links to the net for things that might be of interest to staff via the staff website (which we are able to access) so tell me if that makes any sense. All it ever takes are a few idiots surfing sites that are totally inappropriate to ruin it for everyone else. Don't these losers realize they are always being watched?

As a result, when I'm finished any work I have absolutely nothing to do to amuse myself or to assist in the quest to make one look busier than one actually is. Now if I held an intensely busy position that required hours of my attention, I could care less about the internet. Luckily for me, my audio clinic has been busier than usual. However I'm still searching for another position as I feel like my brain cells are on stand-by during the down time. I just need more stimulation through work and I'm not getting it. I need to do it now, before I get too comfortable doing not much of anything after the majority of my work is done - which doesn't take very long. Thank God I only work part-time. 40 hours of this routine would drive me insane.