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30 September 2012

birthday week

i've been a bit laaaaze getting these posts up this week, but that's ok because i have an excuse (or 3): this week was my birthday, and i just damn well didn't feel up to pretending to be happy-go-lucky when i was really feeling less than cheery about turning the big 2-8. i know it's not old, and i certainly don't feel any different, but i find that since 25 i have been getting progressively depressed about being of 'a certain age', and not being married/in my own home/with brats under foot. so, this week has seen me a bit uncharacteristically forlorn. to top that off, we have had our land lady staying with us for the past week, and she's a lot to handle and kind of makes going home a bit... awkward, so we have been trying to keep busy after work and be home as little as possible.

i should preface that by saying that she is in fact a live-in land-lady, she just technically lives in italy. when we moved in, it was 'by agreement' meaning that it was her house, her rules, we were simply paying house guests. it was private rental, basically. we also had our rent reduced from cheap to really cheap, because we agreed to have a monday-friday tenant who would occupy her room until she decided to come back. she thought she would come back monthly, but in our first year she came back only once. we had it pretty sweet really... except, the tenant we had was... strange, to say the least. he has just been made redundant and moved on, so now she's back to decide on the next step.

i freak out, and think she's inspecting the house when we're not there. and she has these strange little mannerisms and idiosyncrasies, like separating our garbage and recycling .. and then telling us we don't have to but she will and not to worry if she goes through our garbage, and telling me that it's best we keep the fridge door shut because otherwise the cold air will escape... really? it will? wow. incredible news. her being here basically puts me on edge. and so when we found out this week that she was thinking about moving back full-time, well... displeased to say the least.

so, this week - despite being the week before payday, has been fairly full-on! on tuesday night, boyfriend and i headed to hammersmith apollo for a taping of 'live at the apollo' thanks to him getting his hands on some free tickets by email. we had e-tickets, which wasn't a guaranteed entry, but meant our names were on the door, providing we were there by a certain time. the tickets advised to be there by 7 at the latest, but to start picking tickets up from 5:15. we arrived just before 5:30, and were welcomed by a giiiiiiiant line. literally, hundreds of people were already there and lining up. i was starving, and looking forward to a kebab, but begrudgingly got in the line knowing if i didn't, we wouldn't get in the building. they must've been hoarding people in quickly, because we had hit the front of the line in about 45 minutes, which left us about the same to go and grab some food and get back in before the doors shut. poifict! we got in there and ready for the show, which overran by about half an hour, meaning we didn't get out till 11pm... and i was a tiiired bunny. and, of the 6 comedians we saw, less than half of them were even funny - in my humble opinion.

wednesday night after work boyfriend and i went shooooooooopping! well, window shopping for sewing machines. aaaan sadly, the one i want is sold out in store, so i will have to order online, which means i miss out on a free in-store tutorial (which i need after not using a machine in over 10 years). i'm also hoping that as they're discontinuing the current selection, that they will be releasing new colours soon - i am hoping for pastel pink or mint! the bubblegum pink they have in the mini version is a bit... much, so i think i will have to sit on this want for a mo, and hope that some good fortune comes way way! on the way home, we stopped by the new primark on tottenham court road (read all about the new store here), it is soooo preeeeetty! carmen and i have a date there tomorrow (i think) so i will keep you posted on all my wares then!

thursday was the big daaaaay. boyfriend made me a lovely card to open, because i already 'had' my present (he's paid for us to goto budapest in december, and bought me a big bottle of lovely by SJP) and didn't want me to go without on the morning of my birthday - all together now: naaaaaw! i had a really relazing day at work too - now that i am running a project and have some temps doing some of my work, it means i have less to do now - which is both awesome, and annoying. because i hate being idle. and idle is what i am most of the time now. once the project finishes up, things will go back to normal, and some order will be restored, but until then, i'm running on about 30%. it was a casual day! i got soooo spoiled by my wonderful friends at work, with a card full of love and also £60 worth of high street vouchers! soooo stoked, they know me so well! going shopping for suuuure this week!

that night, boyfriend and i joined carmen, mark, liz and nic for some german food and fun at oktoberfest in kennington! it was straaaaange. we got early bird tickets through groupon, so each got a half-pint, a bavarian meal and a... bag of crisps, for £4each! liz and nic were wonderful and bought me my ticket for my birthday too... another free night out! we stayed there for no more than 2 hours because, the weather was bad, it was a school night, and the bavarian 'meal' (read: two gross sausages and a plate of chips) made me sooo ill. not the best way to end my birthday, but i did have a  great day. it's funny, i was thinking on the way to work that morning, that this was the first birthday i've ever had in autumn. like, it was really cold! i am a spring baby, and my birthdays have always been warm(ish) - even last year in the UK it was unseasonably warm for my birthday. this year though, leaves all over the ground, frost on the windows and dark and cold mornings. it's the small things like that that really remind me where i am now. i don't really 'miss' home - of course i miss my friends and family, but i missed having a warm birthday! silly, i know.

friday night after work we headed to the relaunch party of grace bar in soho. not our normal hangout, but owned by the same people as our local hangout, so we got VIP entry (ohhh yeah!); free drinks and food, and an exclusive area to ourselves! about 40 people from work headed down with me, where we sang, danced and drank a lot of free bubbly and half priced cocktails waaaay into just after 7pm where we then headed across the road to the PI, where their happy hour is two hours longer. hahahahahahha. sad, but true. plus, the PI have a light up dance floor and 90's boy bands on a massive multi-screen-tv.  #winning

which brings me to today. today, i joined bex, LP, ani and marc at the london tattoo convention. my first convention, and it was a great day to be out of the house. these 'productive saturdays' are really catching on! i wasn't really sure what to expect - i don't have any tattoos now, and although i'd really love some, i don't think they're for me. i am a huge admirer of them - i think they look fantastic on most people, but they're something that you really have to commit to; i'm so indecisive and have such an attention to detail, that i know whatever i had on me i would scrutinize, or hate within two minutes, or - worse still, want moooore of. bex had been trying for weeks to get a booking with dan smith - kiwi artist who's worked with and in some of the best shops and parlours in the land (most famously high voltage; la ink with kat von d). sadly, she wasn't able to secure the booking, but instead got a photo and massive fangirl moment when we met and spoke with him today in person. other amazing highlights included being smiled at by phil kyle of magnum opus tattoo (also known for work on london ink), grimaced at by nikole lowe of good times tattoo (also better known for london ink), and completely ignored - but not caring, by ami james of love hate tattoo (aka. miami ink).

we spent a good few hours in there - checking out the amazing work being done, feeling sorry for some of the crazy fools being worked on (especially the poor guy getting the palms of his hands done by the guys at frith street tattoo, who was clearly NOT having the time of his life). so many cute clothing and accessory stalls too, and i bought this really cute love heart necklace from vicky at starsNscars which i adore and will be commissioning her to make me more of. 

all in all, i've had a massive week, and it looks like this week is going to be much the same. i really cannot complain, it's fantastic to have so many cool things to see and do all the time. i am really grateful to have the opportunities that i do, so i plan to stop being a misog and get on with it. i am supremely lucky to be me, and it would do me good to remember that more often.