Tomorrow, We Fly!

Well, in the early hours, anyways.

This past few days has been hectic! We have been packing, picking up supplies, tidying, cleaning and generally preparing for our week in the sun.

Sunday was great, because my father – in – law ran the London Marathon for Barnardo’s, a children’s charity for disadvantaged children around the world. I did want to go to London, but because I still haven’t got the hang of big crowds yet, I stayed home. But I was able to borrow Josh’s laptop to track the father – in – law’s progress, and he didn’t do too badly, actually!

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Yesterday I went shopping with the sister in law, as I needed some swimwear and sandals. Luckily the summer ranges are just coming out, otherwise I would of had some problems.

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I love the rainbow bikini, as it’s funky and quirky, and the orange flowered swimsuit has a cute skirt and tummy control, just so I can feel more confident on the beach or by the pool. The white one looked nice, but didn’t fit over my chest comfortably, so when I get back, I will be taking another trip to Portsmouth to take it back.

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These sandals are brilliant for me, as I am so clumsy, I will trip up over the thinner soles. The current fashion for thick soles, has made me feel much more confident with walking around without scuffing the sandals, or doing my toes a mischief, which I do every summer.

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I did attempt the traditional pout selfie on the way back, but obviously failed miserably, but it was fun to attempt. I know I’ll always be the goofy sister – in – law, but that is what I do best!

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I also bought some nail polish, as I like having a pedicure and manicure when I get ready for holiday. It was three for two on Barry M products, and the gel polishes look similar to getting a shelliac manicure, and blue is a nice holiday colour, so I got three shades of blue, then did my manicure and pedicure after a full on bath. I couldn’t decide which one to go for, so I did all three in a running pattern, and they don’t look too bad, if I’m honest.

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And the mother – in – law fixed my Kindle Fire, so I’ve been downloading a load of free ebooks onto it, so I’m excited to have some new things to curl up on the pool chair with. Mostly some classics on the public domain, like King Arthur, and Grimm’s Fairy Tales, as I might write a novel set in these domains for young people.

So, we leave here at 3am, and then will be getting a 6:30am flight to the sun and sand, very exciting! To be honest, I could seriously do with the holiday, if I’m honest, university has been very stressful, and I’ve been feeling awfully uninspired to write much for either the anthology or any university stuff. I am hoping that I can get some really good prose down so I can hand in most of the stuff for when I get back after Spring Break. But I guess  we shall have to wait and see!

I Went Shopping!

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Today I went to Southampton, and took my vouchers from Social Services with me. TO WATERSTONES!

Sadly, we do not have indie bookshops in my part of the world, which breaks my heart. But even if there were, the love to shop vouchers wouldn’t be valid in them. But I didn’t get that much time to pick the books that I would cart back with me. I had to top up my spending by a couple of pounds on top of the vouchers. But so worth it.

I might actually sit down and write a To Be Read list, like other bloggers tend to do. I could even start vlogging if I wanted to, now I have a DSLR on the way (And when I get my laptop repaired), but that might be too much effort for me, especially as I have got a whole module to catch up on. I might do a reading challenge though…

So, I thought I’d share with you the books that I have purchased today, why I have bought them, and my expectations of the book.

1) The Library of Unrequited Love by Sophie Divry.  It’s a French novella that’s been translated from its original language. It’s about a librarian who discovers that one of the readers has unwittingly been locked in the library all night. The story seemed intriguing, and when I read the first couple of pages in the shop, I knew I had to get it. It’s told in second person, with no paragraphing or chapter breaks. I haven’t read much of it yet, but it is a charming little book, and the cover looked nice too.

2) Skellig by David Almond. This guy is one of the professors on my degree program, and he gave a talk to us at a plenary session. He was really inspiring, so I’ve been on the lookout for his debut novel about a strange birdman creature a young boy finds in a shed. I’m looking forward to reading this, seriously.

3) Stoner by John Williams. This is the Waterstones book of the year, and after reading the blurb, I can’t wait to give this novel a good go. The main story is about this guy who goes to unit to study one career, ends up doing something completely different, marries an unsuitable woman, and dies as an unmemorable person.However, it is also supposed to be a deeper story. Intriguing.

4) The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend. This is a cult classic involving the diary of a young, awkward teenage boy, which changed YA and the way it was viewed forever.

So, that’s the start of the to read list! Can’t wait to get started, alongside all my uni reading! Yay for books!

Happy Days!

So, popped into Southampton today, and decided to google up vintage clothes shops in the area. For those I haven’t informed yet, I have decided to venture into the world of vintage fashion, and return to a time when clothes were pretty and classy, and made you look sexy without showing off all your flesh.

After trekking through the high street, we finally found Beatnik Emporium, a small store dedicated to selling and hiring out vintage and fancy dress clothes. It was rather worth it, as I managed to spend £25 on their sales rack dresses, purchasing three lovely summer/autumn dresses. I shall wear one of them tomorrow. In the meantime, a drink will be very much enjoyed!

Been Busy!

Today has been another busy one!

First, I had another quick tidy up, and found two of the books I bought at Kelmarsh, and tidied up my bedside table. Then I grabbed my stuff, I had some shoes to exchange, and that bag of clothes to donate to charity.

I spotted a Sue Ryder van on my way to the councillor’s office, and ditched the bag in the open door, and scampered off like a mother dumping a child outside the founding hospital (back in those goddamn awful days). Had a rather emotional session going over my relationship with my mother, before heading into town to run some errands. Picked up a portable DVD player (a sort out of my DVD collection is in order at some point), two skirts, some hair stripper, and a couple of books.

Then my carer texted me to inform me of an opportunity involving a bookcase costing £14.99 at a local charity shop. I therefore decided to take a look, as I was under the impression of it being waist high and unable to store much in the way of books (fitting my book mountain only), not to mention potentially being battered and in not so good condition. I went in, and saw it right away.

What a beautiful sight beheld my eyes!

It is taller than I am, with about six shelves, that are very deep indeed, and actually has two drawers in the bottom that are also rather deep. I bought it right away, as it is also in excellent condition, practically brand new! It will be delivered to me on 15th August, and a post with photos will be published, almost like the birth of that baby was announced! All very exciting indeed.

The day ended with a trip to the pub, and an email from Radio Haslar about an interview to become one of the volunteer DJs for the radio! It is only hospital radio, but it is something else to do as well as the museum. My interview will be on Friday! Am rather excited!

There will be a World According To Fred tomorrow, he has had a bit of writer’s block this week, but I am sure he will come up with something eventually…

Back to the Present!

I’ve been back home from Chalke Valley for a day now, and am attempting to adjust back to civilian life away from camp.

Friday was great, as I was able to get to camp with my tent fully pitched up and ready to move in to. I met some of the gentlemen who I would be spending the weekend with, before grabbing a bite to eat and a pint of cider, before turning in for the night.

Saturday involved me getting into costume for the first day of camp. The kettle was on the fire when I got out of the tent, and some of the other members of the regiment began to arrive, with the food for the weekend. We cooked bacon over the fire, prepared the tea, and got ready for the day ahead. I hadn’t expected for the weather to be so hot and sunny, to be honest, so I hadn’t packed suncream or after sun, so I was rather horrified at the sight of my rather red arms as the day progressed. I helped cook, clean and keep camp organised.

Then Ian Hislock and a camera crew from BBC Two showed up, and asked if they could film us sat around the fire whilst Ian did a piece to camera. Ten or so attempts later, whilst the fire blazed like mad, and the sun beamed down stronger, didn’t make things comfortable for us. But after the guys got back from drill, it was over. Apparently I will get an email to let me know when the documentary they were making will go on air, so I will let you all know about that. Ian even gave us a regimental autograph to thank us for helping the production out.

There was a skirmish between the British and French troops on Saturday, but it wasn’t as great as we would of liked, although the clear skys made for clear views of the event at hand.

I popped to the market that was selling all sorts of wonderful things, and I managed, with the little money I had left, to purchase a reticle, which is basically a little handbag on a string to hold basic little items, in my case, antibacterial gel and my debit card. Which was great when two of us went off to get some money out for spending. That was a story in itself, when the search for a cash machine nearly became an almighty adventure.

After a delicious three course meal, we popped over to the beer tent for a pint of ale, before turning in with a borrowed reindeer fur (it was rather odd to be sleeping on Rudolph!) for the night.

The next day involved a lot more shopping! I picked up a sponge suitable for the Barber Surgon’s handling table for work, as well as some naturally dyed wool and bone knitting needles. I sampled and purchased some horse and beef jerky, and found some herbal cream good for sun burn that is light enough to put onto your face. I then bought a canvas satchel for my reenactment kit ready for other events.

After a wonderful shopping spree, I bought some lemonade, and made my way back to camp ready for the reenactment of the Battle of Victoria 1813. It was wonderful to watch, all the smoke from the shot guns, the bangs from the firing Brown Bess muskets. Drums and flutes played as men went down on both sides, with commentary from historians peppering the action without distracting too much from the battle at hand.

After that, the camps closed to the public, so we could get on with breaking camp. I rang Josh to ask him about arrangements for after I got back into Portsmouth, and then discovered that we were off to a barbecue straight away. We left at around six o clock, and got home around quarter to eight. It sure felt odd to be back home, and I already began missing everyone in the regiment. Although I was looking forward to the nice shower and warm bed…

My next event is Kelmarsh, the biggest Living History Festival in the UK, run by English Heritage. Apparently it is the best event for shopping for reenactment equipment, and is also great for finding out more about historical reenactment! Also I will know more of what to look out for and what to pack!

Now I have a shopping list for next camp! But, for the meantime, here are some photos I took whilst in camp!

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Dinner being cooked

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The walkway from camp

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MY TENT!

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Fred enjoying a quiet weekend

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Inside my Tent (more spacious than a one person modern tent)

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My reticle

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The guys at work!

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Battle

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Ian Hislock and production team

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Camp being packed away

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The after math…

Catch-Up

So, as you can see, my cosplay has been unveiled! I’ll be looking into the Femme Arthur Dent next, so stay tuned for that! I got my bow tie through the post yesterday afternoon, which I was able to intercept as work let me off early!

I didn’t realise that yesterday was one of those days where I didn’t actually need to go into work. I could of sat down and started some coursework, but as I left my memory stick over at my fiancé’s, I’m going to have to wait a while before I can finish off the theory side of things for college, but I’ll probably take the day off next Tuesday after the opening weekend rush in order to sit and get some serious work done. I might even head off to college and sit in the study centre a while, but, meh.

Today I’m going to be visiting Southampton with my housemate and our carer today, it’ll be the first visit of the year, which is pretty exciting, as I haven’t been since the Christmas shopping. One of the reasons I rarely go there to shop is because it’s a one and a half hours’ journey by bus to get there in the first place (Winchester is two hours!), and the bus to the city isn’t very frequent, so you need to have a full day out in the city, it’s not somewhere where you can go to for a couple of hours and then go home. It’s also a place that gets pretty crowded when the weather is good, as they have a massive shopping centre, an IKEA and a very busy high street. It’s not particularly fun, but there you go. The crowd issue causes several issues, for example, long queues in some of the stores, people stepping on either you or the shopping and generally getting in the way. I tend to get most annoyed at the mums with huge buggies, which act like those snow plowers (and most of the time their kids are not even in the blinking thing!), and they expect you to get the heck out of their way! I understand it when a disabled person needs the room, but not these mums who use their buggies as trollies…

Rant over. 

Anyways, I’m really excited about tomorrow as well, as I’m going to be doing a filming gig for work. As the new museum has all it’s opening stuff going on tomorrow, they need people to help the film crew out. As I have training in filmmaking (thanks college!) I’ve been asked to help out. Only downside is that they will need me in Southsea for 8.30am. Looks like I’ll have to be up with the sparrows, as I need to get a bus from my house to Gosport, get the ferry over to Gunwarf, and then hop on another bus to Southsea. It’s a once in a lifetime thing though, so it really is something to get excited about!

And then on Friday will be a massive work do! We’re all going to this party that will have a DJ, live music, food and drink, just some really cool stuff! It’ll be a long one as well, so how I’m going to get off the base at 10.30pm without a pass is beyond me! 

Then Saturday and Sunday will be the opening weekend to the public! Scary stuff! I’m really nervous, as I know it’ll be the busiest weekend in the history of busy weekends. As a volunteer tour guide in the new museum, my job does involve crowd control, as well as talking to the public about the artefacts and other stories to do with the museum, and I also have to do security checks for unattended items. 

And then back to college for the final full day…