Friday, 1 October 2010

All good things must come to an end

It's been a crazy few weeks, so much so that I couldn't concentrate on any blog type things, or anything much really.

Today is a new chapter in my life and I'm trying to feel enthusiastic about that, on this wet, cold day in Brighton, after having sat in the Housing Benefit Office feeling like a scrounger!

Our lovely little office & our even lovelier little team at work is no more.  I didn't think I'd be as sad about that as I am but we'll be ok & hopefully good things will come to all of us.

So....let's do this.  Let's find a great new job in London, let's find me that flat I want in Crouch End, let's start those trampolining classes!!!!!!  After a few weeks of no response from anyone anywhere, next week is looking a bit more promising for yours truly & I have some agency meetings and a real interview - fancy that!

I don't really enjoy dealing with agencies but needs must I think & hopefully these ones will be better than the ones I saw the other week. One (I shall mention no names) actually looked at my CV and said "so you're not an academic then?" and then "If I'd have known how much money you were looking for, I wouldn't have seen you".  My response (apart from the two fingered one I'd have liked to have given her) was "yes but if you look at my CV, you'll see that I've actually been working since I was 17 and have only been unemployed for about a month in my rude cow".  Ok so I didn't add the rude cow bit at the end but I felt like it.

I should really find a suitable picture to put up on today's ramblings I guess but then again....

Watch this space blog-readers x

Friday, 3 September 2010

It's the final countdown.....

September cometh which means just 4 weeks left at work.  I feel in limbo at the moment and just want to get going but needs must and I'll be here until the bitter end.

This job-hunting in London lark is proving tiresome and I think I was a bit naive to think I'd find a job I havn't.  Not only have I not found one but I'm struggling to even get so much as a response from most agencies.  Now I know they must have a huge amount of applications but surely they must see that I have great skills & a good work record - mustn't they??????  So the job hunt continues and my days are filled with Gumtree, Reed Employment and SecsintheCity scanning....constantly....waiting for that one employer to see something amazing in me and give me a call.  I think it'd be a whole lot easier if I just wanted a plain old admin job and a salary of £20k but I want more than that, on both counts. 

September is going to be another crazy social month with 2 nights out next week, Brighton Food Festival, Ace Cafe Reunion (woot), Goodwood Revival, my birthday (not so woot!) and the (badly named) My Generation mod night.

Inbetween all that and closing down our office, I'm downsizing at home so, when the time comes, I won't have so much crap to take to London.  I'm not sentimental about so many things I once was, and have binned tons of things that now mean nothing to me.  It's quite therapeutic actually but is taking forever - only one room down so far.  Some lucky charity shop is going to get a big pile of old stuff that I would keep if I could, but can't....and certainly can't muster up the enthusiasm to post on ebay.

Monday, 30 August 2010

Goodbye August

Did you think I've deserted you?  Life has been too hectic to think about blogging but as I'm having a relaxing Bank Holiday Monday at home, it's time for a catch up.

August has been head has been full of our pending office closure and my pending redundancy, looking for a job in London (& failing dismally), combined with more fun stuff than usual.  This summer has been fantastic.  The coming weeks are going to be even more manic and I may just combust!

So....where did I leave you last time?  My lovely dream flat in London I think.  Since then, I had a visiting Mother & her friend.  We went to Pride.  I wasn't overly impressed this year - it was ok I guess but the theme (Pride & Prejudice) meant there just wasn't enough dressing up.  I always love to see the emergency services start the parade off (brings a tear to my eye it does) and obviously Michael Jackson loving jazz hands man.

The next week brought a spur of the moment decision to go to Vintage at Goodwood (nice one Sam!).  Goodwood has won best day out of the year so far and despite the rain, I loved it.  Not totally sure about the northern soul lessons but they were harmless!  Also not sure about the Radiohead mix in the Soul Casino but I'll even let that dj off....but just this once.  Plenty of beautiful people in beautiful clothes.  Highlights of the day - the Soul Casino, unexpected lovely toilets, and that guinness & chocolate cake!

Bored yet?  Last week was The Chords up in London.  I used to love The Chords (and probably always will....on vinyl) but, although they played well, I just couldn't get into it.  Very male-heavy crowd and a bit of a weird atmosphere.....or maybe I imagined it.  I left after "British way of Life" and caught the VERY SLOW, VERY DRUNK late train back to Brighton.

....which brings us up to this weekend.  Bank Holiday weekend in Brighton is a weekend I look forward to all year.  A chance to see people I only see occasionally, a chance to put a dress or two on (not at once), and a chance to be around well-dressed folk.  I always get nostalgic for my Lambretta, Sneakers in the 80s, Hayling Island weekends away and all that jazz.  I think next year calls for getting away a bit more on bank holidays.  I may even invest in a little tartan suitcase & duffel bag like I once had.....just for old times sake!

Monday, 2 August 2010

Going back to my roots

The urge to get back to North London is growing by the day.  Who'd have thought it?  I just have the tricky job of finding gainful employment now - a minor hitch in my plans!

Yesterday I took the 134 bus along a route which I'd taken many hundreds of times before - but not for at least 10 years.  For any bus geeks out there who might happen to read this, the 134 starts at Tottenham Court Road and finishes up in Finchley (I think).  This was a route that went past my old flats and into Camden so a pretty important bus all round.

There was a reason for me taking the bus - I wanted to suss out areas that I hadn't visited for a long time, areas I may or may not want to live in again.  I'd been considering Kentish Town and upwards towards Highgate but have re-thunk!  Neither Kentish Town nor Tufnell Park did it for me yesterday.  Tufnell Park was great to live in for a while after moving to London from the sticks but I've grown up & want somewhere a bit more "me".  My little studio flat in Tufnell Park saw a lot of people come & go - mainly the likes of Tina & Dawn who stayed pretty much every weekend.  It also saw boys come and go - great ones, swedish ones, and other ones.  It did the job for a while but then I wanted bigger & better - I'm talking about the flat here by the way!

Highgate felt positively posh compared to Fortess Road....well it is I guess.  I moved into a flat that was pretty darn lovely, apart from the odd old furniture that the landlord insisted I kept and the fact I had to share a bathroom, but it was lovely nevertheless.

I'm rambling again. Anyway, it's a no to Kentish Town & Tufnell Park, a vague possibility if it was great as far as Archway is concerned, but a definite yes to Highgate or Muswell Hill.  My wishlist is topped however by Crouch End.  Lee was a great font of local knowledge yesterday and told me lots about public transport etc.  which, although boring to anyone else, is a necessity to me.  I need to know I can get places.  So Crouch End it will hopefully be.  Crouch End with it's lovely little cafe's, boutiques, delis and interesting little shops.  I know EXACTLY where I want to live but that'll be dependent upon the job and availability at the time.

Now...if anyone could just find me the job that I need to help me achieve this new found dream.....I'll love you forever.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Selling my soul

Let the job-hunting commence!

Although I can't go anywhere until October, I've started to look around on the job boards & agency websites for a suitable new role for me in London.

Gone are the days I can work for £25k in a fun, casual, media-type role.  Instead it's looking like I will indeed have to sell my soul to the City, put on a suit & go into professional mode in order to make a decent living.

It's been a long, long time since I've even considered wearing a suit to work.  I'd be laughed at here if I put so much as a smart shirt on I'm sure.  I'm used to flexi hours, access to Facebook & a fridge full of whatever my heart desires.  I'm ready for the change though (I think).  I will put my best RADA training into practice and look all interested when Hedge Funds and the FTSE 100 are mentioned (oh god, my stomach is actually churning at the thought).

I honestly can't remember the last professional type company I worked for.  It was probably my first job in an Accountants in Wiltshire though which was the grounding for all my future jobs and a company to which I'm very grateful for giving me that start at 17.  I was there for 10 years and worked my way up from Office Junior to Senior P/A and gained the experience to flee the sticks and move to London that first time.   I think I did wear smartish clothes to start with but by the end of my 10 year stint there, I was wearing stripy tights, had a pierced nose and dreadlocks down to my backside.  They put up with a lot and it was probably a good thing that I left for the smoke when I did! this space lovely blog-readers.....there will be plenty for me to write about I'm sure.  I'm still hoping for that fun, creative job that pays over the £35k that I need (& want) but I'm not holding my breath and am going out to purchase a suit in readiness at the weekend.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

Hens, Stags - be gone with you!

Warning - Grumpy Old Woman blog coming up!

As lovely as summer in Brighton is, it brings with it train after train of hen & stag parties.  They're everywhere, cluttering up our pubs and our restaurants, and bothering the likes of me who would rather they were hurded, like cattle, back onto the train they came from, as soon as they reach Brighton.  They can keep their inappropriate clothing and their beer guts (and that's just the women!) or save it for Croydon Uncovered (Sky Channel 11).  How any of these people ever found someone who would marry them in the first place is beyond me.

If I were to get married, I'd have a civilised affair beforehand.  Perhaps a nice quiet meal somewhere or a bit of pottery painting (ok so that was a joke).  If any one of my friends thought a night out dressed in penis-embellished t-shirts was "fun", they would be gone, quick as a flash. 

Yesterday was generally a bad day for "people I don't want to associate with - EVER" in Brighton.  Maybe it was the sun, maybe it was parents having one last night out before they are trapped indoors for the summer holidays with their kids, who knows?  Either way, I felt positively upper class around them and, occasionally slim!!!

As much as I will miss Brighton when I move back to London, I won't be missing these hideous creatures.  I don't think there's much call for hen & stag nights in Bar Italia etc.  Here's hoping there's not anyway.

I will leave you with this lovely sentence I heard yesterday from one of these hideous creatures.......addressed to a bus queue of primarily pensioners and people with children "Oi, bleeding hell, are you looking up my f@cking skirt or something?".  Says it all.  Over and out.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Streets paved with Gold.....allegedly

Big changes happening in my world....changes that have been forced upon me......but good all the same (I think).

Last Friday we got the (not so) unexpected news that our office will be closing down at the end of September.  Rather than sit in a corner sobbing, I'm going to take my severance money and my laptop, and move on to the next phase in my life.  I'll be very sorry to leave this place as it really is the best place I've ever worked (and probably ever will) but what will be, will be, and as I always say in times like has died.

So that news has prompted me to think about all things financial.  Brighton salaries are generally rubbish.  I can no longer work for £25k and moreso, I refuse to!  My current salary is rare and one I will never get again in Brighton....or at least at the moment.  So.....after a lot of soul-searching, I've made the decision to move back to North London.  This wasn't an easy one - I'll miss the sea, I'll miss my flat, I'll miss the Laines - but needs must.  I don't want to struggle for money anymore and the only way I can avoid that is working for decent money in the smoke.  I'm only going knowing that I can come back to visit friends at weekends or on days off....and am only 50 mins away.

I've been in Brighton for 10 years now and for most of those 10 years I've said I will never move back to London....ever.  Oh how things change.  I guess things over the past year have made me like the place again (or least parts of it) - I loved doing Lipgloss in Chalk Farm (albeit with a very short shelf life), I loved going to South East London for illicit meetings, and I've fallen in love with Soho again.  So...rather than dreading this move.....I'm looking forward to it....and only wish I could go now rather than have to wait until October.  At least I'll have Summer in Brighton and all that goes with it, and when it gets colder and less appealing, I'll be off...MacBook in hand.

I'm looking forward to being a North London girl again so will be trawling the property websites for a 1 bedroom flat in Highgate, Crouch End, Tufnell Park, Archway.  I'm very choosy though and won't be living in some kebab-shop infested street above a laundrette or anything of the sort.  I will, of course, have to find a job first but I'm hopeful.  If nothing else, I'm resourceful and can market myself quite well when needed.

Any job offers or flat offers gratefully received.  See you in Bar Italia x

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Auf Wiedersehn Pet!

This past weekend saw a very long overdue trip 'up North to Newcastle to visit friends and partake in a bit of Pop Klubb action.

I've been going to Newcastle for a very long time now but not nearly enough.  I'm happy to say that I would recommend a trip to the North East to anyone - it really isn't just all about lasses in inappropriate clothing and Paul Gascoigne you know!  (Although to be honest, it wouldn't be the same without them!).  I'm probably the only person who does but I love the Angel of the North.  It's very welcoming after a journey from practically the other end of the company, and it means I'm nearly there.

Once upon a time, many moons ago, I started an indiepop night with some friends called Pop Klubb.  We booked an old social club, with cheap drinks, sticky carpet and "Brian from the Committee".  That first night could have gone either way.  A very special friend's band played and people sat around listening to Belle & Sebastian, and Jens Lekman, not really knowing what to expect.  Nearly 4 years on and Pop Klubb is still going strong......although I'm not involved in it, I'm very very proud of what we all achieved and how it gained such a great reputation for playing the best music and putting on great bands.

On the subject of Pop Klubb....long live Northern social clubs.  If we have them down South, I'm not sure where but they really are an institution that need to be kept.  I love the bad decor, the fact that it must have taken someone hours decorating the place with England flags, which are still up despite us losing weeks ago, the bubblegum vodka shots that have seen the downfall of many a twee kid, the entertainment that's advertised which looks like a bad joke but isn't.  I love it all.  I will never forget the look on a swedish friend's face that first time we walked in to one man and a whippet - it just about said it all.

We drove to the coast the next day.  The coast at Tynemouth & Whitley Bay is absolutely stunning - all sandy beaches which I miss.  As lovely as Brighton is, pebbles just don't do it for me.  Broken parking meters, closed cafe's, lack of parking spaces, and pushchairs blowing away in a near tornado didn't dampen our spirits at all and I loved my fish & chip lunch, the old tearooms and Master Whip (spawn of Mister Whippy) who looked strangely like Raoul Moat and someone I wouldn't let my kids near in a million years (if I had kids).

Tynemouth flea market is lovely - a mish mash of old & new, cupcakes & things you wouldn't ever want.  Slightly shocking was the fact that we firstly found nazi action man type dolls (the stall holder had a hitler at home you know!) and then a whole stall of nazi memorabilia.  Strangely interesting but a bit worrying too.  I was more worried by the dolls if I'm honest - as they're new and apparently there's a market for them. 

To my friends in the North - I will be back soon - if only to say hi to Master Whip!

Monday, 5 July 2010

I heart Soho....and more

This summer seems to be the busiest ever.  All good but fitting everything in is proving difficult.

I was hoping to be able to write about lovely indiepop things in this blog but Saturday night went down the pan.  Never mind......was obviously not meant to be!

It was the Race for Life event this weekend.  Brighton station was a mass of pink t-shirts yesterday.  I saw one particularly lovely thing that I wished I'd taken a picture of - a lady with a card on her back that said "I'm running for myself as I survived".  Fantastic, and surely what this is all well as obviously remembering those who didn't survive.

Soho was calling again yesterday so on a whim, off to London I went.  No room for small people and prams in Bar Italia this time but we went back to my newly found gem, the Mediterranean Restaurant on Berwick Street.  I love this place and am recommending it to everyone!  £7.50 for two courses of yumminess.  Not the smartest of places and you might not even notice it from the street but the food is great!  Halloumi salad starter, and grilled salmon main - wasn't I good?

I wish I could tell you I did lots of cultural things yesterday or shopping, or at least spied a good celeb or two...but in all honesty, all we did was eat & drink.  Baby in tow was a good excuse & who's complaining?  Pattisserie Valerie next.  As I was having a good "don't eat all the pies" type of a day, I just had a milkshake but cakes are on the menu for next time.....all that'd be rude not to.

Still on a food note...I was happy to see The Stockpot was still open on Old Compton Street.  I was sure this had closed down before.  Love, love, love The Stockpot.  Nothing special on the food front but cheap & cheerful, and great punters.  I used to go to the one on the Kings Road regularly and would see Holly Johnson without fail every single time.  I think this place has been around since the 50s and nothing much has changed from what I can tell.  Vintage lasagne too no doubt!

.........and just because I like it, here's a pic of a hairdressers window in Kingley Street, just off Carnaby Street.  Am wondering if this is the place that Ian Earl of Ealing visits.  Perhaps he'll tell me.

Soho done.....this week is unfortunately not a good nor exciting one.  Two dental appointments (which my friends will know fear me with dread) and a meeting at work on Friday which will determine our fate as an office.  Expect moaning, groaning and tears in my next blog.....or perhaps not as I'm off to Newcastle on Saturday.  Swings & Roundabouts!

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Ye Olde London Towne

My blog entries are becoming very erratic these days, as opposed to erotic, which is probably a bad thing!

Saturday arrived and off to London I went, on the hottest, stickiest weekend of the year so far.  For someone not good in the heat, this probably wasn't ideal but I couldn't miss the chance to catch up with the ladies.

First stop in Camden - Dr Strangebrew.  I love, love, love this place and if it was in Brighton, I'd be there all the time.  Although slightly off the beaten track (i.e. Camden Road!), this is one of my recommendations to anyone who likes their vintage, likes their coffee, and likes absinthe chocolate cake (if you're lucky!).  If they had a website, I'd put a link but instead you can find them on Facebook.

At the mention of 2-4-1 cocktails & 50s music, off we went to ZenSai in Inverness Street.  I'm not sure how long this place has been here but I'll be back, should I venture into Camden again - great cocktails and a lovely view of all the nutjobs of Norf Landan.
I can't remember what yummy cocktails I had but one was a peach martini I think - not a cocktail umbrella in sight either!  Loved the music in ZenSai and the fact that everyone was really dressed up.

Bored yet folks?  I've a bit of a way to go yet you know.  Am only half way through our Camden reunion evening!  Food next - and on to the Goodfare Restaurant.  I used to spend a lot of time in here, over a cheap plate of something italian & a frothy coffee.  Situated right opposite the old Food Records office - a great viewing post.  We saw Jude Law in there once I'll have you know - all young & pretty, with a tiny baby strapped to him.  Those were the days.  Sigh.

It wouldn't be a Camden night if we didn't go for a quick drink in our oldest haunt, The Good Mixer.  As I mentioned before, this place is just not the same anymore but it had to be done.  I didn't get that feeling of excitement in my stomach that I used to get nor was I surrounded by britpop stars but then I wasn't expecting to be.  There could well have been bright young things in there but all I noticed was the slight smell of vomit and the caged in area outside - no doubt to prevent alsorts of craziness happening on the pavement.  Blah.  Hawley Arms next.  I hadn't actually been here since my dreadlock days and beautiful Chris who lived in a squat on Eversholt Street (whatever happened to him?).  Apparently all the "cool kids" go to the Hawley, along with the likes of Amy Whitehouse and Kelly Osbourne.  To be honest, they'd be lucky if they could even fit into the Hawley - it was rammed to the rafters - and not a dreadlock in sight.  Final stop and not even worth a new paragraph, The Spread Eagle - another old haunt of ours.  I didn't even recognise the place - toilets that worked, food you could actually eat, and sofas. What the?  Put me right off it did!

Oh dear, today's blog seems to be just a selection of pub photos.  How very boring!

Sunday morning in Soho was lovely.  A complete contrast to mad old Camden.  Really peaceful and calm, and much more me than Camden is these days.  I could have spent all day in Bar Italia if time allowed & will definitely be checking out their selection of cakes - all of them, one by one, til I'm sick!  I love everything about Soho - Soho Square, Berwick Street, Frith Street, all of it.  I even love the sleaziness of the adult shops and live sex show venues.  It's what makes Soho and I wouldn't have it any other way.

So, that was my weekend, give or take the odd saveloy or cup of coffee.  Not the most exciting blog entry but such is life!

For faraway Mother - I saw Paul Nicholls.  He said he'd call you.

And to my favourite ladies - Dawn, Lee & Ulrika - love you lots xx

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

The Britpop Years

This coming weekend sees a bit of a reunion for me (although on a very small scale).  I'll be re-tracing my steps in my old stomping ground of Camden, with some good friends who I don't see nearly enough.

I was very lucky to have moved to London in the 90s, just as the britpop scene started to happen.  Having moved from dull as dishwater (at the time) Wiltshire to Tufnell Park (a stone's throw away from Camden), this was probably one of the most exciting times of my life. I would do it all again in a heartbeat, given half the chance.

It was a standing joke back then that we should give our monthly salary cheque to the barman at The Good Mixer as we spent it all in there anyway and it'd save time!  I think I pretty much went out every night of the week for around 4 years.....which is why I have a very good excuse to be a boring old bastard and stay in more often than not.  I seem to remember that Fridays were the big night out though.....meeting up at Camden tube station at 8 (on the dot) and starting off in The Good Mixer.

You really would have had to be part of it to understand what was going on in Camden then.  I am no longer phased by "famous types" as in those days, it was normal to see the likes of Jarvis, Oasis, the Blur boys etc. etc. everywhere you went.  I still have friends I made then, who would be classed as "famous" to some people but to me they're just guys I met up the pub.  So Friday nights.....the britpop & mod scene were very closely connected so everyone was well dressed and oh how we loved it!  After a few cider & blackcurrants and shouts of "Crazy Horses" to the poor guy out of Jesus Jones who used to dj there (and oh yes, he got it every week!), and laughing hysterically at the graffiti in the ladies loos (Ben Shoesmith knits his own underwear!)....we'd move on to The Spread Eagle or Dublin Castle.
Pub closing time (11.00 way back when I think) would take us down to The Monarch or HQs, or The Laurel Tree for the original Blow Up (my all time favourite club EVER)....or if we were drunk and nothing else was on.....goth night at the venue near the market that I've got a mental block on!  If we were feeling particular hardcore (which we mostly were), we'd end up in The Marathon Bar on Chalk Farm Road.....the most bizarre place.....a kebab shop that sold cans of lager til the early hours, to a weird mix of britpop musicians and mentals.

Anyway....I'm rambling....Camden these days is just not the same.....gone is The Laurel Tree, gone is George & Nickys, The Monarch has changed and The Mixer is full of nutjobs....I'm sure it always was but they got sidelined by Menswear.  We will have the best of times catching up and no doubt laughing at the graffiti in the Mixer (again) as if it were still 1995.  We might be 15 years older but we still know all the words to "He's got chops and he's alllllriighht" and god help the guy from Jesus Jones if we recognise him!

Finally.....just because:

Sunday, 13 June 2010

On the Buses

Another sunny day in Brighton which called for an early breakfast in St Ann's Wells Gardens. 

Nothing better than veggie breakfast in the sun.  I would recommend this lovely little place to anyone - great food & the most peaceful park that I know (apart from a few fluffy dogs and babies!).

Looking forward to Tapas Fridays that they have in the Summer.

I love this place so much it deserves a link:

My weekend and love of old things continued with the 75th anniversary of Brighton & Hove Buses.  Maybe not the best planning to have loads of new buses right at the start of Madeira Drive, as the likes of us nearly went home there & then.  Buses obviously have spotters like trains do.  Lots of strange types with their notepads, getting overly excited at the Number 27 bus to Hangleton.  We stuck with it like the troopers we are and luckily found the vintage ones further on.  Beautiful, beautiful buses that they should never have done away with.  How can anyone get excited over the current Number 7 when there was once this. To think that this would have been the bus I used to get home.  Blah to the new ones!

And just purely because I like them, here are some old signs on one of the buses.  I wonder what happened to Sylvia?

We took a bus ride on an old open-top bus up to Rottingdean and a lovely time was had by all.  The driver wasn't joking when he said we'd be passing under some VERY low tree branches and would all have to duck on the top deck!!!!!!  I managed to get there and back without losing an eye or having to pick lots of flies out of my hair! 

And finally, some random pics from our walk along the seafront this morning. 

Rockabilly Rebel

Fear not trusty blog followers, I have returned.  I can imagine how frantic you've been, wondering if I've ever recovered from Carnaby Street.  I have indeed but have had a stressful week hence my disappearance!

The weekend has been a real mix of old things which you know are my favourite things!!!!  Saturday was an afternoon of rockabilly loveliness in Gardner Street, organised by Mark of The Dorset.  Lots of pretty well-dressed things that unfortunately I didn't get pictures of but tattoos a plenty and lovely make-up on show.  If I wasn't afraid of pain and didn't look stupid in bright red lipstick, I'd be into that scene myself.  Instead, I'll stick with my 60s stuff and watch from the sidelines.

They had a 50s hairdresser cutting hair for free...and very nice it was too.  I realised that a good 50s haircut can do wonders for the men of Brighton & suggest lots of them get down to his salon like NOW!  I wonder what he could do for me with my unruly curly hair that either makes me look like Shirley Temple or Ken Dodd....neither of which is a good look!  Pity Brighton & Hove Council refused the let Hot Rods park up in Gardner Street (that'll be the Green Party for you no doubt!) but a very nice time was had by all & much vodka & pimms was consumed in the sun.  Sunburnt?  Moi?

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Never drinking again......

I seriously never learn.  Me, cider, heat & no lunch = ridiculous woman.  I wish I had a little helper constantly with me who at the point of 3 pints says "STOP NOW".  No such luck.  Anyway, I digress.....

After a lot of pfaffing about & changing my mind every 2 secs, I got my arse out the house yesterday and up to Carnaby Street for the badly named "Summer of Love".  Tis completely true what they say, Carnaby Street isn't like it used to be but it also wasn't as horrific as I remembered a few years ago....or maybe that was the cider blurring my judgement.

I'm embarrassed to say that I didn't really take any notice of anything much going on but the no doubt especially hired in go go dancers were ok, as were the bands.   I particularly liked the two crazies with wigs on dancing - class.  Who they were, and where they came from, nobody knows!

Oh darn it, I'd planned to write a long, interesting blog today but I'm flagging already.  Blah.  I'm actually wondering if I had lots of interesting things to write about and that's doubtful thinking about it so with that, I'll leave you with pics of dancing men with wigs on!

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Sunshine on a rainy day

It's been a beautiful sunny day in Brighton today.  The sea looked extra blue from my office window & the Pavilion Gardens were packed.  I've felt uneasy today though - from a mixture of having bad dreams last night, reading FB updates on June's funeral yesterday and hearing news of mass shootings in Cumbria.

I know the bad dreams probably came from the Cumbria news.  It brought back very bad memories of the Hungerford massacre in 1987.  I lived and worked very close to that pretty little town and had driven through that very same high street on my scooter just a day before.  I was at work when it happened and news came through from a colleague's wife who was trapped in her house just a stone's throw away from Michael Ryan who was going mental with a shotgun.  That day was one of the scariest ever, knowing that had he turned right instead of left out of Savernake Forest, Marlborough would have been in the news for all all the wrong reasons and not Hungerford, and things could have been very different for me and everyone I knew back then.  I did actually know someone who got shot but luckily survived - I imagine his bad dreams are a million times worse than mine.

On a much nicer, happier note - I met up with Kristin for lunch at The Dorset.  I forgot about dieting again and scoffed on nachos with chorizo - a million calories and fat content through the roof but I needed it today perhaps.  Lovely to catch up with Kristin regarding important things such as Manchester nightlife and the fact that the male species up there are just about as useless as they are down here.

Thanks to Facebook, I saw this lovely afternoon advertised today.  I'd like to see what someone could do with my curly mass of hair in the way of a 1950s style!  A definite must and a chance to take lots of lovely photos of no doubt lots of lovely people!

and finally.......the teenage skanky squatters have gone - removed it would seem as all their badly handmade banners have gone and the beer bottles binned.  Maybe they've found a better establishment - we'll never know!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

June - better than May?

May wasn't a good month at all for so many people I know - deaths, suicides, break-ups & general upset all round.  I know I'm not the only one who is hoping that June is going to be better - it couldn't be any worse I'm sure.  Jonathan Cainer is the man who knows and he said it is - for me at least.  I'll be going round his house with a big stick if he's lying.

So for today's blog and in an attempt to make my social life sound interesting, I'm just rambling incessantly about things that are on during June.

Firstly, tomorrow I'm meeting up with a friend I met originally on Friendster (remember that?) or MySpace many moons ago.  She moved from San Francisco to Berlin to study for a while and I had a great time out there visiting her.  She's been in Manchester for months now and we havn't had a chance to meet up but tomorrow it's lunch in Brighton for us.  Hurrah!  Kristin:  Hope you don't mind me putting your pic on my blog - don't worry, no-one reads it anyway!!!!!

Saturday is a possible trip up to Carnaby Street for it's 50th anniversary, unfortunately named Summer of Love.  Normally I'd avoid Carnaby Street like the plague as it's not like it use to be - cliche' I know but it's true.  I started going up there in my mid teens as a little mod girl, looking for cheap vinyl in an upstairs flea market type place, and buying boating blazers.  Twas here that I spent so much time - later progressing to visits to Charlies tailors for hipster trousers that stopped fitting me all too long ago.  So back to 2010 - this weekend sees bands playing, no doubt go go dancers in shop windows and probably the odd scooter or two.  Obvious worries concerning Carnaby Street this weekend but I'm hoping common sense prevails and I'll get there.  The Universal, Connett & The Small Fakers (Small Faces tribute band) are playing amongst others:

Also this weekend is the lovely Frock Me vintage fair in Brighton on Sunday.  Not sure whether I should actually go this time round as money is a bit tight in June but no doubt I will and be sorry afterwards.

Now this might surprise some people but I like old things!!!!!  So I'm going to be going along to 75th Anniversary Bus Rally on 13 June, with camera in hand.  I always miss the old vehicle days on Madeira Drive but not this time.

Blimey, June is looking particularly interesting - weather hold out please!  On to 18 June now and two things happening that night, Modesty at The Dorset and The Hush Club at Northern Lights.  Will try to get to both of them - both free & both excellent music:

Finally (phew!) this brings me to the last weekend in June, by which time all my hard earned cash will have practically run out unfortunately but roll on next payday!  26/27 is a weekend in London as one of my best friends is over from NY and we'll be frequenting our old haunts in Camden and the like.  No doubt it'll feel like we've never been gone and much gossiping will be done.  See you soon Dawn!

Over & out.