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Standing infront of a Fringe hoarding tonight in Edinburgh with a friend guesticulating rudely at the sight of 3 male comics advertised infront of us. Where are the women? And frankly Edinburgh’s pretty well over the comics too. ( You can tell the festival is coming a sleugh of London types are starting to follow me on twitter.)

Leith is full of young men cycling on pavements. They are drug couriers – a friend of mine yells after them ‘Ya mammy no let you on the road’ to try and embarrass them. Leith Polis in the style of getting Al Capone via tax – make the wee buggers bloody walk.

I’ve spent 24 hours trying to get the Fat Black Cat to pee into a litter tray to get a sample for the vet – she is most affronted and plotting to phone Catline.

I went on holiday to Galway and hurrah! the last vestiges of the desire to achieve have left and spent it pottering around quietly mostly in this awesome bookshop.

While I was having lunch at Ard Bia the owner came up and showed me a photo of a lady with a crocheted shawl and asked if I could make one (I was crocheting a shawl for the person I was going on to stay with) which lead me to look at photos of shawls on the Arran Islands.  I’m definately going to rock the shawl, scarf, black dress and sensible shoe look this year.

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David-Bowie-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-1 What a tumultuous time I’ve been experiencing…. I’m aware that I’ve been writing  / thinking this for a 2 years now .. or more?

On Friday I went to a memorial in Glasgow which I was dreading. The weather was truly Shakesperian and cooperated by sheeting rain, gray skies and blacker buildings. I managed to fall UP some stairs – a first for me. I passed the few hours beforehand at The Yarncake. The truly hideous weather removed all desire to tramp to galleries to improve myself. Instead I parked myself in the The Yarncake, purchased some yarn and did a little crochet. If you are yarn minded and going to Glasgow do make the effort to seek it out only a few minutes walk from Hillhead underground station. The cakes looked utterly divine but I’d had a huge lunch at the Hillhead Book Club near the subway so resisted.

At the memorial I met people I haven’t seen in 15-20 years. People who belong to a different part of my life. A part which I sometimes regret, a part which I sometimes celebrate, a part which enrages me. (I am a former feminist activist who in middle age regrets not learing to use a gun. All I can say that it’s a jolly good thing this country has strong gun control laws). And recent encounters with young women online haven’t improved my mood.

I don’t know if the younger me could ever have understood or contemplated what I’ve been through in the last twenty years. How I have struggled through chronic unending illness to keep my sanity, try and create a bearable meaningful  life for myself.  How do you explain to someone who chirps at you – ‘have you made any films recently? That actually just getting up in the morning and getting through the day is a win? And that really I’m beyond the woman who thought mistakenly that achieving things and public ticks of approval was a good way to organise her life and that in anycase it never worked and never made her feel any better?

And then  the next day as a sort of reward by the universe after the gloom of the day before I went to a wedding. A lovely wedding where I sat with lovely people. Despite everything I’ve managed post my earlier life to make new friends. I was charmed to finally meet the mother of one. Who made my heart purr when she announced that really she had gotten rid of her husband after 20 years because ‘she couldn’t  be bothered to live with someone else’ and in her retirement has become a devotee of the most violent video games giving the geekiest dorkiest boy a good run for their money.

And today I met a friend for a walk on Portobello Beach and we followed it by errands in Ocean Terminal which evolved into trying to find the friend a grown up tutu to celebrate a photo of herself wearing one aged 5.

And yesterday before the wedding I went down to pick up a vinyl copy of my favourite album – the live recording of the last Ziggy Stardust concert. I’m too tired to set up the turntable I bought to play it on but consider it part of the same project. Not to wait for permission to do what we love and like, or hide it because its not the done thing to wear a Tutu aged 38, or video games if one is 60 plus and a woman or craft if one is a grumpy ill feminist.

 

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More to come! I’m struggling with the new wordpress dashboard.  Meanwhile in other breaking news I finally planted my parrott tulips ordered in the Autumn. A realisation that one has to plan for forward pleasures. A gardening minded friend thought they might actually come up next autumn! But gardening in Nov/Dec was a no no for me. So I popped out with the aid of a dessert spoon planted them all and hope that cats/squirrels do not dig them up.

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What a year! Very … mixed… for me lots of changes… after coming out of a serious bout of illness last year. I feel its been a birl – I have hardly stopped until felled by a chest infection in November which has dragged on and on. I have to say most of my Christmas holiday has been spent recovering. However family who have travel afar return home today. The excitement of company, meals out, concerts etc is now over one more day trip before work starts.

Next year I’m determined will be different. I’ve started by placing some lovely freesias beside my bed. I shall now make a hotwater bottle retire to bed with some knitting for a refugee child (using up odds and ends I love being thrifty!) and listening to Dorothy L Sayers on the radio Busman’s Honeymoon. Small pleasures but we have to take them where we can.

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So just before I got ill last year I went with my parents to Paris on a secret mission to surprise my Uncle who was taken there by my cousin Lydia as it was his 80th birthday party. Back in the 1950’s my uncle David Brotherton had met Jim Haynesshakespeare15 at Edinburgh University and have kept up their friendship. So we hatched a plan to get David to Paris to one of Jim’s legendary Sunday Night Dinners and we would surprise him there! The plan worked perfectly. We had a wonderful evening – it was so balmy we even sat / stood outside.

(I give up since I stopped blogging regularly there have been changes to wordpress cannot move that pic! However my cousin Lydia on the left persuaded a stranger to take a photograph of us all outside the legendary Shakespeare & Co where we had repaired for coffee now they have a cafe)

merry

Hello! I’m aware that blogging has been light and as another friend has advised me the mea culpa posts are irritating. Suffice it to say full time working + feeling rubbish for last two months have dented enthusiasm.

My usual Christmas traditions have been curtailed or are out of the window. My tablet factory was indeed opened and quickly closed! (search blog for recipe). I may well reopen it in time for New Year. I’m back from Christmas lunch. A disparate group of my parents, family friends, strays and lovely though it was. My low energy means I’m kind of glad to get home. Very grateful for the taxi driver who got me home and am planning a slow evening of undemanding telly plus knitting for refugees. Its only been the slow clack of the needle or hook which has been keeping me going the past few months.

 

What a year! I don’t know about you but I’m still very firmly discombobulated by world events. I’m not 100% yet sure how to respond to them all. I know that social media has been like a Coryvrecken of stuff what to think what to do … and and and I’m still formulating my response to the world the way it is and negotiating how to respond with very limited energy. Sometimes all I want to do is shut the door, order some seed potatoes and sit it out…

 

So what do I wish for or hope for ? I don’t know .. perhaps things will become clearer and less storm tossed or at lest we will see a path forward in this confusing world. I cling to my friends IRL, my lovely craft group, my grumpy fat cat (she’s not taken well to this full time working malarky), and making things with my hands.