juillet 30, 2004

reflections

it's warm and humid outside and the air smells like molten chocolate. my girl just sms'd me. it's the weekend tomorrow.

how much better can life get?

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juillet 29, 2004

I've been up to London to visit the Queen....

The weekend was incredible fun. There were a couple of downers, like getting a massively exhorbitant parking ticket outside our hotel in Kensington, and losing my new swish D&G sunglasses (yep, gutted about that one)....

but mostly it was everything I hoped it would be. we relaxed, unwound and forgot about real life for a few days.

We must have walked miles and miles and we spent far too much money. London is expensive yo. I mean really, when they charge you almost ten quid to see a church, you know it's pretty excessive.

But, I digress. There was much prettiness and sunshine and warmth and some of the amber liquid to be had. It was fun. And we were happy. And that was the awesomest thing of all. Just being together and celebrating being together.

We drove down on Saturday and made our way through the middle of London, getting totally lost in the process. And I mean totally. Well, okay, not totally, but quite. Maps and one-way roads and instructions had us all over the place. We ended up the wrong way on Charing Cross Road and all sorts! It took us about 2 hours to get through the center of London. Fun times.

We were staying just across from Kensington Palace in a lovely, but expensive little hotel. We got there, relaxed for a while and exchanged gifts. Becuase we're cute like that. I got her a chunky silver bracelet and she got me a lovely silver watch. And the card she gave me was adorable and made me go awwww....

::I'm so lucky::

Anyway, so we had a shower and then we had a wander around Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park where we saw Diana's memorial fountain which is now closed to the public because of people hurting themselves on it. There's some irony in that I think.

There were flowers tied to the gate in the front of the palace for Diana even seven years on people still leave flowers for her.

Sunday we went on the tube and got off at Victoria station, We walked up to Buckingham Palace and saw the tail end of the Changing of the Guards. It was stinking hot (finally it's getting warmer and sunnier) and I felt sorry for them all in their uniforms! I took lots of pictures, of course, and developed the beginning of a pretty pink sunburn.

Then we walked up The Mall to Trafalger Square which was *packed* with people. It was fabulous. That's what I remember about London - it's so busy and alive and vibrant. Not sure it wouldn't drive me nuts if I lived there, but it's *so* fun to visit. Then we walked up through Leicester Square and round Piccadilly Circus and up Oxford St. I had terrible blisters on my feet from the shoes I was wearing, so we stopped off at Carnaby Street and I got some
trainers from O'Neill. Then we walked back down to Westminster and stopped off at in old pub just down from Downing Street for a pint o'lager. Talked to a sweet old fellow in his English tweediness ;>

Leaving the pub, we carried on down the road to see Big Ben and Westminster Abbey except it was Sunday, so that was closed. I was starting to think I would never get to see inside as last time I was in London in 1990 we never got to see the Abbey because it was a Sunday then too.

By this point we'd walked for a couple of miles, and we were exhausted. So we headed back to the hotel room where we had snacks and champagne and uh... celebrated our anniversary... Then we fell asleep in each other's arms, which was SO cute ;) I think that was possibly my favourite point of the weekend. I've never in my *life* been able to sleep wrapped around someone else, but with Jackie I can, and it's the sweetest thing I've ever experienced.

After we finally roused ourselves, we went out for a quiet meal. We thought about going clubbing but I was too knackered after the week I'd had and then
the driving through London the previous day. So we skipped it and opted for an early night. Turns out it was kind of a shame because Melissa Etheridge had gone clubbing in one of the lesbian clubs on Sunday night. HOW cool would it have been to bump into her? Not that I would have said anythign to her of course. I would probably rather have *died* than let it be known that I recognized her. I'm very Kiwi/British in that regard. But still, it would have been cool. Also? She was shopping in Soho. If we'd stayed in that area longer? Again, might have bumped into her. Gah!

But.... moving right along.... We went to see Westminster Abbey on Monday. It was phenomenal being where so many famous kings/queens/writers/poets etc are buried. It was just kind of sad that you tend to get herded around there so quickly - I felt like I missed a lot and then we couldn't go back. After that, we went to the Tower of London and saw the crown jewels.

After being on our feet for what seemed like, actually, probably was, hours, we had a late lunch at a pub near the tower The Hung, Drawn and Quartered. It was a fab meal of ham, eggs and chips. Then we went back to the hotel and had a quick snack and went out and caught the tube to Hammersmith where we saw Melissa....

and I'm STILL buzzing, even three nights later....

On Tuesday we checked out and drove down to Richmond and did a quick circuit of Richmond Park. Jackie had been so nervous initially about going to London (stepping outside her comfort zone, which I understand) and I'm sure would have pulled out if I'd shown any sign of letting her. But by now she was just loving it and really loved Richmond Park. Decided if we won lotto we could by an apartment in London! From there we went to Kew Gardens and spent a few hours wandering around checking out the botanical exhibts and just enjoying the natural areas.

From there we headed home, and that was our weekend, in a nutshell.... ;>

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juillet 28, 2004

girlfriends just wanna have fun!

we had the most amazing time (bar one or two mishaps, of course. I wouldn't be me if I didn't have the odd disaster!) more to come on the weekend later.

however, I will say right now...

melissa was simply *unbelievable* in concert. that would have to be one of the best concerts I have been to. evah.

okay, so I haven't been to that many, but jackie, who has been to a few more than I have, also agreed. she said she'd place it in the top three concerts she's seen. and this, from a girl who doesn't even know melissa's music at all. I think that says a lot.

girlfriend just rocked the house. she's not known *at all* here in the uk, so the theatre was pretty much a dyke army, which rocked in and of itself. okay, so it was a little scary for the uninitiated, like jackie, but I loved it!

and being staunch and reserved brits, it took a lot to get them going, but by the end, pretty much everyone was on their feet, clapping and the standing ovation was deafening.

I don't think I could ever do her justice in words, she was just.... wow. two and a half solid hours of raw singing and passion and leaping around the stage.... simply phenomenal.

If you like her and haven't seen her? go. now. or at least next time she plays near you. you won't be disappointed. guaranteed.

If you haven't heard of her? !? find some of her music and then go and see her. she's *amazing*; simply awesome.

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back.... kinda

I'm back!

::dies of exhaustion::

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juillet 23, 2004

[just breathe]

Work is still nuts. Althought it is slowing down a touch. Hence the few minutes to update. And tomorrow = London! So while I actually got out for a lunchbreak yesterday and today (unlike the first three days of the week), I had lots of things to do - cards and other things to buy.

Now I have to find again the instructions for where we are going and make sure I know how to get there. And then write our itinerary, which the girl has been telling me to write for weeks :)

By then, I am sure, it will be time to head home and get organized there...

Probably by the time I get around to making another entry it will have been and gone. So have a good weekend all, catch you when I am a little less insane!

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juillet 20, 2004

communing

on sunday there was a big rainbow picnic in support of a sexual health organization. we didn't go, but we did head to the afters party at queens court.

we haven't been clubbing in absolutely ages and it was quite odd to walk into the courtyard. stranger for jackie and s than it was for me since they both used to spend lots of time there. but even for me.

I love being in the same place as so many gay people. there's *such* a great energy and I feel so at home. it's like, you know how it feels when you come home after a time away? that's what it feels like when I'm in the company of gay people. I'm not 'scene' at all, but I just really enjoy it every now and then. feeling part of something, feeling like I belong somewhere. having a boogie.

we need to do that more.

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rockage

Wow, work has been so busy the past couple of days. Because the rest of the team are off on holiday I'm the shortstop for everything. And I mean everything.

Today was one of those days where whatever I touched went magically well. I suddenly worked out how to build a simple SQL query in access, after a flash of brilliance on the way home last night, I wrote the entire progression rules for the part time Bachelor programmes this morning and this afternoon I worked out how to change the standard letter K has been working on for the past couple of weeks (when they sprung the fact on me that we needed an entire extra conditional statement).

P, the Big Boss threw this change at me this afternoon at 2:30 and expected the changes to be done by the end of the afternoon. I just blinked at her. I've never even looked at standard letters before. But I did it. Worked it out in the space of an hour or so. It helped that it's partially html, but some of it is specific coding for the student records system.

Hey never mind, I'm jack of all trades, I'll work it out. Thing is, when there's no other option, I do.

It does make me wonder though, exactly what I am capable of when I really put my mind to it.

It was an awesome day though, busy, but really great.

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juillet 19, 2004

mwahahahaha

I love this. Seriously.

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juillet 16, 2004

here and now

Lately, I've been listening to The Power of Now
by Eckhart Tolle
. It's had the most amazing affect on me.

The book is basically about learning to let go of the past and the future and realizing that the present is truly the only moment there is. The past is simply a memory trace and the pain that we hold onto from the past is simply an illusion. It's complicated and quite difficult to understand on an intellectual level, but the thing is you don't really need to. One of the things Tolle says is that we have learned to identify ourselves by our thought patterns/processes and the key to enlightenment, or 'being' is to stop thinking about the past and future and just become quiet and highly conscious of the 'now'.

And it makes so much sense to me. On some level I already knew a lot of this. I learnt it when I had nothing left. When I had no idea who I was. I realized I was me. On a really deep level, I don't need anyone or anything to create an identity. I survived completely losing all those external markers of who I was, and even most of the internal ones. I just was. It was incredibly painful but the pain led to this amazing freedom.

I am. I'm me. I'm not my body or my behaviours or my thought processes. I'm not my mistakes or my judgements. I'm not what other people think of me. I'm so much less than that and so much more than that.

I've spent so many years dragging around pain from the past. So many years being unhappy with what was happening in my life, longing for the future when things would be 'better'. Somewhere, sometime I'd actually get somewhere, acheive something, love and be loved. I've also spent so many years fearing the future, the mistakes I might make, the losses I might suffer, the mistakes I might make.

And then they pretty much happened. And I coped. Not perfectly, but I did okay. And that's all I needed. Just to get through.

I realize now that I have everything I need in this moment. I don't need anything more than I have. I don't need to fear the future because it might never happen. And whatever happens, I can deal with it. So there's no point in worrying about it.

And because part of living in the now is accepting things as they are, I'm finally learning how to really do that. Let go and let things just be. It's liberating.

And it feels really, really good.

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toot sweet!

Ever have one of those days where you get up and you've noticably lost weight, like, overnight?

I had one of them yesterday - got up and put my newly washed chinos on and had an extra inch or two of space to spare. Yee-Ha!

We're not dieting as such, but we're eating more sensibly - more salads, less carbs, less fat, less sugar, less caffeine. Okay, so not less alcohol, but you gotta start somewhere, right? ;>

Good times!

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juillet 15, 2004

inevitability

the most freeing thing in this life is when you can acknowledge that some things suck, but that's okay because you can't change them, you can only accept them. and while some things/circumstances suck, other things are wonderful.

it's still raining, but that's fine. it's keeping the trees and grass green, the badgers can find food to eat and I'm not wet, so where's the big?

the defeat of the FMA has me beyond thrilled. and reading Barbara Boxer's speech to the senate made me want to cheer.

the exam board has gone swimmingly. my part of the project has worked wonderfully. I'm getting more good feedback. that, simply rocks.

I talked to my mother last night. life is hard for her right now. I worry for her but there's nothing I can do but be there for her when she needs me.

it's only nine days till london.

yep, my life is pretty much cool...

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juillet 14, 2004

gulp...

out of a unit of four people, three are on holiday for the next two weeks. guess which muggins gets to stay and hold the fort. if you picked me, you'd be right. never mind that this is one of the busiest times of the year. never mind that i have little idea of what the other three do.

if I don't get this fricken pay rise soon, I will be quite displeased...

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juillet 13, 2004

headache-inducing

one of these days I'm actually going to yell at someone I work with.

I tell them and tell them and tell them not to change things in a certain part of the records system or the reassessment process will not work.

They tell me they won't and then they go ahead and change things anyway. And then deny it.

And then I have to spend half my day undoing their fuckups. After three weeks of this, you would have thought they might have clued in that they shouldn't be changing things.

dude, at one point we actually took the rights to change things away from them. until we found out they still had to have it to put in results from last year.

one of the women has resorted to sending over one of the other girls with the problems now. so I don't yell at her. but if she insists on continuing to mess things up, I'm going to have words. and it won't be pretty.

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juillet 12, 2004

love is...

No matter what kind of day I've had or how I'm feeling, when I'm in her arms, somehow it all becomes all right. All the bad shit goes away and I'm just left with that wonderful warmth and feeling of wellbeing. That's when you know it's good. And you're pretty damn lucky.

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amstel getting over it....

We went out with friends on saturday night. One of our boys has just split with his boyfriend, so we went out for a few drinks for the moral supportyness.

It was only a few drinks too, but somehow my head didn't register the 'only a few' bit and subsequently, most of the night was a blur.

the 'highlight' as such was when I got approached by a West Indian man from Nottingham who insisted on telling me I was the most beautiful woman in the place (!) and wanted to be 'friends' with me. Even after Jackie told him I was her girlfriend, he just wouldn't leave me alone. I was feeling too amiable and probably should have given him a more direct brush-off, but he seemed sweet and I thought he would just go. Except he didn't, and I ended up having to give him a fake number and take down his in my phone just hoping that would get rid of him.

No such luck. in the end I escaped to the bathroom and hung around up there for a while. When I came back, he was gone. So yeah, flattering but kinda freaky too.

I can't say as I felt too hot yesterday morning either. We'd had a bottle of wine between us and then three pints. Which usually doesn't affect us too much. Maybe it was the amstel lager. I don't usually drink that, so that might have been the problem. Might have packed that semi-lethal punch that new drinks sometimes do.

It was a fun night though. It was nice to be with our boys and they have agreed to take the kitty for the weekend we are away. So that's also good.

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juillet 11, 2004

planning

It's another pretty miserable weekend weather-wise. And my head isn't feeling too great at the moment either. I suppose that's pretty natural. Moods do rise and fall. And this weather simply isn't helping.

This time in two weeks, we'll be in london. We're hoping the weather will be much better. It's probably an insane hope, but what can you do? we'll be staying in a gorgeous little hotel in kensington. because this time in two weeks, we will have been together a year. which probably seems insignificant to many, but is greatly significant to me, for many reasons, most of which I'm not going to go into now.

Here's a selection of the things we are thinking of doing when we're down there

  • see westminster abbey
  • visit the tower of london and see the crown jewels
  • go and visit the newly dedicated princess diana memorial fountain
  • changing of the guard at buck house.
  • have a wander around the parks close to our hotel
  • harrods? or would that be too dangerous with a krispy kreme outlet? ;>
  • piccadilly circus and surrounding environs
  • if the weather is naff, either the british museum or the natural history museum. possibly both if it rains all four days we are there.
  • possibly hampton court palace - while I've been, jackie hasn't
  • of course we are seeing melissa etheridge on monday night
  • possibly a night out at one of the gay clubs in london
  • above all, relax, enjoy ourselves and enjoy being together with no hassles

any other suggestions gratefully received...

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juillet 09, 2004

turning point

this is my favourite song for the moment. and it says a lot about where I am now.

I've had a good week. It's been interesting to watch the change in the way I deal with personal issues.

I feel almost like I've proved to myself that I've grown up now and I'm no longer letting old demons have their way with me. It's been a nice revelation to know that I've finally succeeded in separating feelings and emotions from actions. That I can choose how to react rather than letting the reaction choose and control me.

that is as much a self-esteem issue as anything, but it really tells me how far I've come and as such I feel really good about myself because of this, as well as despite it.

I think this week has marked a turning point for me. One that I welcome and embrace. I feel like I've turned a corner in my feelings and my ability to seperate from the pain of my past. to feel the peace and just enjoy it. to just be.

the song is by alanis morissette. as usual, she seems to have lived in my mind, knows my thoughts and puts them into words. she rocks.


Fourteen years, thirty minutes,
fifteen seconds, i held this grudge
eleven songs, four full journals,
thoughts of punishment
i've expanded
not in contact, not a letter
such communication, telepathic
you've been vilified
used as fodder
you deserve a piece of every record

but who's it hurting now?
who's the one that stuck?
who's it torturing now?
with an antique knot in her stomach

[CHORUS]
i wanna be big and let go
this grudge that's grown old
all this time I've not known
how to rest this bygone
i wanna be soft and resolved
clean of slate and released
i wanna forgive for the both of us

i come abandoned house
dusty cupboard, furniture still intact
and if i visit it now
will i simply relive it
somehow, into it us

but who's still waking now?
who's tired of her own voice?
who's it weighing down with
no gift from time of said healing?

[CHORUS]
i wanna be big and let go
this grudge that's grown old
all this time I've not known
how to rest this bygone
i wanna be soft and resolved
clean of slate and released
i wanna forgive for the both of us

[BRIDGE]
maybe as I cut the cord
veils will lift from my eyes
maybe as I lay this to rest
the weight off my shoulders will rise

here I sit much determined
ever real equipped to draw this curtain
how this has entertained,
validated and has served me well
and for the victim

but who's done whining now?
who's ready to put down?
this (love life) I carried longer
than I had cared to remember

[CHORUS]
i wanna be big and let go
this grudge that's grown old
for the life of me, i've not known
how to rest this bygone
i wanna be soft and resolved
clean of slate and released
i wanna forgive for the both of us...

~ This Grudge - Alanis Morissette

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video diary

Hee! I just got to watch J's video of her first trip to Thailand, Singapore and Australia. It was from 89 and she was SO fucking CUTE. ;> Kinda bizarre to see her with her ex-boy, but in so many ways it was nice. Nice to feel in some little way I could share in that part of her life.

In return I propose to get a copy of two vids from my mother if possible. One is the trip when I was 18 to England and Europe. The other was when I was twelve and in a television production of Humperdick's Hansel and Gretel. I was an angel. At twelve. It's so fucking cute. If, indeed, you can say that about angels.

Too bad I can't do screen caps.

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juillet 07, 2004

.....

I am so, so tired. It was a long and busy day.

But I just love my girl. So, so much. She is the best. girlfriend. evah!

That is really all I have to say today.

And now I am going to bed because I am beyond tired.b

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juillet 05, 2004

reality check

Any of you who know me well, know I have tendency to dwell upon things that happen to me. Especially things that happen that include people I care / formerly cared about.

When I got home on Friday night, instead of dwelling, I got a cuddle from my girl and then we went out for dinner. Her sister has just had an operation to remove a cancerous lump from her breast and the lymph nodes from under her arm. J is understandably worried about her, as am I. It rather puts things in perspective.

Talking of putting things in perspective, we watched a thing on Sunday about Sports Relief aiding children in the third world. It was utterly heartbreaking. I simply cried for half the program. There was an eleven year old boy in Zambia who had lost both of his parents to AIDS. He was looking after three younger brothers, a baby sister who might also have HIV and his elderly grandfather. He was cooking, cleaning, going to school and working. People live like this. All over the world people live like this and I'm worried about... what?

That I owe money to the bank? That someone won't talk to me?

J and I sat there cuddled up and just vowed to be thankful for what we have. What I don't have, I don't really need anyway. In an ideal world, it would be nice to know we could all move on. But all I really need to do is move on for myself and keep embracing the life I have. Life's too short to keep being angry, to keep dwelling on things I have lost.

I will always love her, one way or another, and I do believe she knows that, somewhere in her heart. I'll just trust her to know the real me beneath all the anger and distrust and any manipulation by outside forces. And that's all okay. Because in the end, *I* know how I feel, I know what happened and I know where I am now.

And I know that it's where I want to be.

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juillet 02, 2004

thoughts

sometimes it's too easy to get angry. sometimes the hardest thing is to take a deep breath and let it go. to accept that you can't change things, you can't make people see your truth, you can't undo the things that have been done.

sometimes you have to accept that people make decisions and choices and the reasons ultimately have nothing to do with you and everything to do with them.

I'm not perfect, I never claimed I was. I am so, so flawed. But I also try my best.

::deep breath::

I have so many thoughts going around in my head right now. but the one that is coming through loud and strong is that i have released myself from the responsibility of having caused this. I played my part, for sure. but mostly, I'm just a player in the game.

the difference is that I'm no longer a player in somebody's game.

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