Summer Blues

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I started this post sat in the beautiful grounds of Bath Spa, overlooking the lake, whilst sipping my blackberry liquor and soda water, listening to a cute guy and his friend writing a song to an acoustic guitar. Now I’m typing on a bus, where there is free wif fi, with the drizzle and a Starbucks take-out.  I never really liked summer, but now I recon I do. This summer has already changed my life forever, and I know that it will continue to change.

I’m not performing in this, as I didn’t get selected into the cast, but The Idle Playthings are going to Edinburgh Fringe Festival! They are writing a blog about their adventures, http://ctrlaltsketch.wordpress.com/ so check it out, and if possible, donate a little bit of cash, as they need every penny they can get so they can get up to Fringe, and stay there for the duration of the festival. Every little helps 🙂

I also did my hair, so it is now a lovely rainbow colour! I decided on the radical makeover because I wanted to show off who I truly am inside, this crazy, multi-coloured soul who isn’t afraid of being out there any more. And it looks pretty wonderful, if I say so myself! I’m really proud of it, and intend to keep it this way for as long as possible.

Solstice was wonderful! We drank cocktails, played Cards Against Humanity, before heading out to the amphitheatre to show off talents. I performed some of my poetry, whilst my friend V performed some original songs and a stunning cover of ‘Wherever You Will Go’. After that, we went to the summer house by the lake, set up our altar, and burned paper with things we wanted to get rid of written on them. It felt really good to see the paper smolder and burn into ashes. Drinking mead, watching the stars was also amazing, and we headed back to the amphitheatre to watch the sunrise. All I can say is that I was so glad to have my closest friends with me to celebrate my freedom, and to welcome in a new season, a fresh start for everyone, especially me.

I’ve been on a few more dates, after the guy I was seeing turned out to be rubbish, and I’ve realised that maybe this way f finding love… Isn’t for me. It’s nice to take a few hours out of your day to meet a new person, be bought coffee and cocktails, talk sweet nothings until I’m blue in the face. But, that’s really not who I am, if I’m perfectly honest. I’m back to square one, and, you know what? I’m cool with that. For the first time in a long time, I’m comfortable being… Me. Me is a pretty alright person to be, to be defined by my talents, skills and personality, not for the person she has on her arm. Those days are over for me, and I’ve realised that I’m in no hurry at all to run back that way. I do like someone from back home, and I’m keeping my eye out, but what will be, will be.

Arthur is at a tiny bit of a block right now, as I’m juggling coursework with my personal situation, but hopefully I should get back into a proper routine with the novel soon. However, I’ve been writing an awful lot of poetry, mostly about matters of the heart. Maybe I’ll share a few with you all at some point or other.

But, in the meantime, I’ve started up another hobby. You see, I’m working on becoming a mixologist. Yes, a person specialising in the making of cocktails. I’ve started collecting the equipment, buying in the basic ingredients/spirits required, as well as cocktail recipe books. On top of that, I’ve started inventing my own cocktail recipes. At some point, when I perfect them, I’ll share them with you.

The last post I wrote turned out to be my 200th! A bit dark, I know, but that’s the way things go. I’ve had a lot of support from my friends and even people who I’ve never met before, and that means so much to me. I only hope that one day, young people won’t be afraid to turn round and say ‘no’ to an abusive partner. That when they cry for help, they’ll be listened to, and supported, without question. How can someone lie about being attacked, or controlled, manipulated or raped? How does that even work? Grrr, it makes me angry!

So, on that note, thanks for sticking around for 200 posts. Here’s to another 200!

I Work All Night, I Work All Day…

*hums ‘Money, Money, Money’ under breath*

Oh, didn’t see you there!

Sorry I haven’t posted anything long and decent for a while. I’ve just properly settled back into university life, getting into the swing of things. And I still have SO MUCH to catch up on before I can properly relax…

But I thought, for the moment, that I would live dangerously, and blog for a bit, catch up with my lovely readers, and remind everyone that I am alive and well (just…)

So, this past week…

Last Monday I had my second stand-up gig ever, with the Idle Playthings endorsed event Proving Grounds, so that was very exciting. I really felt a lot more confident this time around, having confidence in my material, the time slot and with talking to an audience. Some shameless ADHD/pansexual gags later, it became a pretty smooth night. I’m really pleased that I kind of swallowed my nerves to get that stuff done, especially as I’d had a serious hay-fever attack that day, causing me to look and feel disgusting, but it was so worth battling through it to get it done.

We also had a May the Forth Be With You party, involving Cards Against Humanity, alcohol and lightsaber fights in the university grounds in pitch black at 1am. I fell over during a weird rap-battle-esque duel with my friends, and really did in my toe, with gore all over the place (I’m being over dramatic, there was blood, but only destroying my socks), so had to limp back and get seen to. I guess it just reminded me of all the amazing friends that I’ve made since coming to university, as well as the fact that even that night I made a couple more friends, which is always brilliant!

The new academic building opened last week for student’s use. I had a seminar in their for the first time, and it did feel rather odd at first. But then I found the Starbucks (we have a freaking STARBUCKS!!!!!), learned that I like Caramel Macchiato (1 shot of espresso please, not two, that would be ghastly), and that I could spend all day working/procrastinating at tables with BUILT IN PLUG SOCKETS!!!! Welcome home, H, welcome home….

I’m gradually handing work in at the moment, at least one piece a week I’m aiming for at the moment. I’ve had extra study sessions booked in with the study tutor, and my mentor, they are happy with my progress, although I’m being nagged to work more outside of the sessions, so I am attempting to, but life always seems to get in the way…

So, I went to the Sleep Clinic in Bristol for my consultation a couple of weeks ago, and they’ve basically rooted the problem down to Sleep Pattern Delay Insomnia. Which, they explained, is probably either caused by my ADHD, or the ADHD is making it considerably worse. The only downside is that they don’t know how to treat me for the sleep issues until I’m finally being treated for the ADHD, which sucks. A lot. So I had to ring the ADHD clinic on Friday, and they said that even though my paperwork was faxed to them a month ago, that they’d only received it that day, and would meet on Monday to discuss whether I’ll be put on the waiting list for treatment…

So, looks like I’ll have to carry on muddling through then…

But on Wednesday I’m reading some poetry. I think I’ll read my edited version of Grey Hearts and Dancing Minds, a poem originally written as a prose piece, but seems to work better as a long performance poem. I’ll share it on the blog today, as I think I should start sharing more of my creative work on here, as not many people like to read on dA very much. So if you get spammed with lots of poetry in the next few days, that’s why. I’m nervous, as it’s a poem that’s angry, sad, passionate, everything that I’ve never allowed myself to be as a writer. But angry writing suits me, so I’m going to stick at it… 

I’ve also finally gotten my Irlen Syndrome glasses. I’m wearing them right now, and the world looks different… nowhere near as bright as I’m used to, it feels like someone has finally turned down the brightness levels of the world, so I can function without feeling blinded by everything. I can sit and write longer blog posts, stay outside longer, and generally enjoy myself without walking into things, or injuring myself…

Life is looking up, although it doesn’t feel like it right now. Damn studying…

In Other News…

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This week just gone has been very unusual, as I’ve done things that have changed the way I view the world forever.

This time last week I was preparing for my debut into stand-up comedy. It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do, just to see how it feels to get up on stage and attempt to be hilarious for a paying audience. I entered the university’s ‘Battle of the Laughs’, which is like the traditional ‘Battle of the Bands’, but instead involves stand-up comedians rather than bands. The prize is to perform as headliner for the Summer Ball, in the comedy tent (we’ve only had this for two years, but we’re one of the few universities to have them), and last week was the first heat. I really enjoyed the rush I got when getting introduced as a stand-up by our lovely compare, and appreciated the laughter that I got from a few of my jokes. I didn’t get through to the final, but it was the experience that counted, and I’ve decided that I really would like to get some compare experience in next year.

I’ve also helped out at an Asperger’s Awareness training session with the financial team at university. I really appreciate the fact that various teams on campus want to be able to help students with autism and Aspergers to be able to get the proper support they need in a way that is comfortable. It makes me happier to think that people are starting to become more aware of how the disability can affect the day-to-day life of someone on the spectrum, and that they want to help in every way that they can to make the student’s lives a lot easier. Hopefully they will be rolling out the training across the board, so that all staff members of all departments of the university become more aware of autism and Aspergers and the issues they face. Speaking of issues, Josh sent me the link to a Youtube video, that I think you’ll all find rather interesting:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmDGvquzn2k

This is from Carly Fleischman, a young woman who has non-verbal autism, she communicates using a computer and speech software so she can explain what she needs/wants/etc. This video shows how it feels to be autistic, and the difficulties that you face when you’re dealing with sensory overload, and how it affects the world you live in, as well as how frustrating it is to be unable to explain what you want.

It’s an amazing video from a really inspirational person. It really shows what someone can achieve, regardless of their disability. If only other people could learn that we autistic people don’t want to be shut out from the world, but actually want to be given the opportunity to join in, and really make a difference, one that can change lives, for the better.

Also, next Thursday, I’m off to Amsterdam! My guidebook came through the post from Amazon, and I’ve flicked through it, getting more excited! The itinerary finally came through as well, so I’m so excited! I’m hoping that people will be able to come to the Anne Frank House with me, whilst one of my friends wants to go to all the places in The Fault in Our Stars, and to re-read the book, whilst I’m re-reading Anne’s diary. The only thing I’m dreading is all the actual travelling, as we’ll keep travelling from Bath to Amsterdam through the night. And I suck at sleeping on public transport. So I might have to ask for travel sleep meds from the doctor, as well as a letter from him to explain why I’ll be carrying sleep medication in my luggage. Oh my, so much to do before I leave as well, all the packing, the learning of some basic phrases, making sure my euro card comes in time…

I’m also going to partay! Yes, I’ve been invited to another Comedy Society party, and I’m really excited, as they always throw the best house parties, with Cards Against Humanity, Epic Rap Battles and other general awesomesauce stuff! I love parties, as long as I prepare myself in advance, like earplugs for sensory overload, making sure my handbag is packed, and that my phone is fully charged. It ought to be a great way of letting off steam after this really bizarre week that I’ve had

Other than that, it’s just a lot of catching up with work, writing and the writing of a comedy sketch involving material from my stand-up…

Back to Work!

It’s been a while since I last posted onto thi8s blog, I know.

I’ve been back at university for a fortnight now, and it’s been really manic. My laptop has been sent back to the manufacturer to be fixed or replaced, as the actual company who were supposed to get the laptop actually fixed didn’t bother to do so, meaning that I haven’t really been able to do much in the way of studying, blogging or writing. It really does wind me up that people have been messing me around, but there you go. 

I’ve also had my Irlen assessment done, as the university have discovered that I suffer from visual stress, especially when reading and working off of a computer screen and bright white paper. I’ve now got to wait for the report to see what recommendations the assessor would make to DSA and the university. I’m hoping for special glasses to help me to read better when working, but we’ll have to see. I’m just waiting on my ADHD assessment in order to see whether I’ll need medication and extra strategies in order to help me study properly. Not only that, I’ve got to see the doctor as I’m struggling to sleep properly, something I’ve had a problem with even when I was a girl.

But enough of the gloomy stuff, and onto my life.

I’ve got a big gig coming up with The Idle Playthings, and I’m really nervous as it’s such a massive gig! It’s at a big comedy club in Bath, where the likes of Russell Howard have played in the past. I’m in a sketch involving lots of swooning and ankle flashing, so it ought to be a rather awesome night. Not only that, but it’ll be the biggest audience I’ll have played to, so it’s very exciting!

Not only am I rising up in the Playthings, I’m also beginning the research process into a novel! Yes, a novel. I’ve been intrigued for a long time about the world of the geisha, and now I’m aiming to write a YA novel (50k words) set in 1920’s Kyoto, telling the story of a young girl who is sold to an okiya, and ends up changing her life forever. As I said, it’s not a polished plot yet, as I’m still trying to research on the subject, which is proving very difficult as there isn’t much good, wholesome information in the library, or the Internet. So it looks like I’ll be relying heavily on Memiors of a Geisha and Geisha of Gion to influence my work. I suppose that’s not a bad thing, although I’ve heard that the former isn’t the best interpretation of what it was like. I’ll reread it and make up my own mind.

Other than that, it’s all about my university work, which I’m behind on due to my laptop going to hospital again. I can write short stories and poems by hand, but I would like my laptop back so I can actually study properly, I need the software that has been installed on it so I can focus on my work and be a proper student again. I know tomorrow I’ll be helping to write a very strongly worded letter to the company providing the equipment to put in a formal complaint about everything that’s happened. Exciting stuff!

 

 

 

Movember 2013!

Today was a day of moustache wonder, as I helped to make the Movember Party at the SU, and raise money for research into male cancers (prostate and testicular). I’m a member of The Idle Playthings, and when I’m not running around trying to be a writer, I’m stood in a room with other, funnier people, trying to be funny. But when we decided to do Movember, I got excited! I love charity events, because you’re having a great time, and raising funds and awareness for a good cause (in this case, saving all prostates and testicles from cancer) 

Movember is basically when guys ditch the razors, and grow moustaches in order to raise money to fund research for the treatments and hopefully cures to cancer in the prostate (a guy’s gspot apparently, also vital for sperm production) and the testicles (I don’t need to explain this bit really, do I?). Girls take part by becoming ‘Mo Sistas’, encouraging the guys and helping to organise and run events to raise even more money for the cause.

So what did I do for Movember?

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Before...

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And After...

I don my own eyeliner moustache, and take part in a sketch involvubg arresting guys who are unable to grow a moustache for Movember. It was such fun, I must say, but I am glad to have removed the moustache.

Lots of comedy and musical merriment took place (I did love the talking moustache!) And fun was had by all. I don’t know how much we raised, but that will be something we find out next week…

So, did any of you lovely folk take part in the moustache fun? If nit, would you do this next year?

Weekly Catch Up!

So, I haven’t done a proper catch up post in a while, but I shall make sure I do one every Sunday.

Anyways, this was my first full week of lectures and seminars, the lectures were all introductory, whilst the seminars were a lot more enjoyable. I haven’t actually started my assignments yet, because my brain turns to mush post lectures and therefore means that I have to do something completely unrelated to bring my mind back to the real world. And by the time that happens, it’s three in the morning, and I really ought to go to bed. I need to get into the swing of things so bad. 

I also had a job interview! I had signed up to do bar work at the local rugby club, and they had asked me to attend a recruitment night, which I assumed to be formal and all interview-like. So, with my paperwork in hand, I headed off to the rugby club, filled out a few forms, and was offered the job, which I start on Thursday! Whoop! I’m finally employed, which is very exciting, as I’ve never actually worked for a wage! I mean, the museum did offer me a job, but I would of been unable to accept it as I was to hand in my notice that same week, which kind of sucked. 

Besides, I’m getting busy with the Comedy Society! I missed the bus to go earlier, to be on time, but now I’m going to be late.I guess I need to pay more attention to bus timetables. But there is Oxjam in a couple of weeks, so I really need to get some material together for my (gulp) first stand up performance. I’m nervous, but I’m sure it’ll be all worth it.

The past few days I’ve had fresher’s flu, so I’ve spent most of my weekend in my pajamas feeling sorry for myself. I’m feeling a bit better now I’ve had some rest, and tomorrow I have a meeting with my university mentor, and I need to drop in a form to work, followed by a hunt for suitable shoes for my shift.

Until then…