Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Exe estuary, originally uploaded by the pig wot flies.

I've been to Exeter for the weekend to stay with HP. It was lovely. I think I walked more and up more hills in a weekend in Exeter than I do in a month in Cambridge.

Yesterday we went for a walk with Nathan and Hannah along the canal towards the estuary. It was windy, but we stayed dry, apart from the sea spray on the ferry across the estuary to Topsham, where this pic was taken. The thing you can't see is just how cold it was, the wind was blowing and we huddled together in the boat to keep warm. The sun shone too, and once on shore again, we soon warmed up.

Now I'm back at work again, but feeling the benefit of being thoroughly de-cobwebbed. Thanks HP!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

sort of here, sort of not

I'm back in the office today, having spent yesterday at home. Not too sure how long I'll last before I head home again. Still quite achey and headachey and not here.

I don't think I'm very friendly when I'm ill. I get all sorry for myself and grumpy. Will save blogging until I'm in a better mood.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


Just about to head home to curl up in bed. Not feeling too good. Which might explain last night's emotionalness. Woozy.


Last night I went to the cinema and saw The Squid and the Whale. It's a good film, well made, but possibly the most gut-wrenchingly upsetting film I've seen in a while. It's the story of a couple splitting up and the effect it has on their two sons, Walt and Frank. No-one comes out of it well, neither parent is the hero, both boys are more or less screwed up by the experience. I almost walked out a few times, but ended up staying to the end, just in case it got better. It didn't really, although the title does get explained and the end scene is almost beautiful, if also sad and ambiguous. But I never want to see it again and I'm not sure I'd recommend it to anyone, especially not anyone who's easily upset. I'm not usually, but something about this film got to me.

I cycled home in the rain afterwards on the edge of tears. This is the flipside of my habit of going to the cinema alone. Yes, you get to chose exactly the film you want to see and where you want to sit and whether you stay until the end of the credits or not, but there's no-one to discuss it with, or to pick you up and give you a hug afterwards.

I went home, had a shower, chatted to my housemate a bit and then want to bed, still feeling drained. Not much better now, although more rested. Going to buy petrol this morning and leaving my wallet at home didn't help. (Sorted now, I went back and paid once I'd collected my wallet from home).

I'm meeting knitters tonight, perhaps that will cheer me up.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

if only pianos had an off switch

Today I have live piano accompaniment. In the office.

Actually it's rather good. Usually we get someone trying to play 'When the Saints go marching in' very badly. Today it sounds more like a concert pianist rehearsing.

Not doing my sleepy head much good. I shall try to stop moaning and appreciate it, because it's actually good. They're playing straight through and not stopping to go over mistakes, until just now, I think it's got to a tricky bit.

Wish I knew what the music is. It's something famous and I ought to know it. I've got a sneaking suspicion it's the Tchiakovsky I was hating on Monday. hmm.

Monday, May 15, 2006

I don't think I like Tchiakovsky

At least not when I'm working. Too lush, too swoopy, too many little flickery lights going on and off.

I want Bach.


UPDATE: Found some Bach. Better.


I am looking at websites of US universities and there are lots of things I don't get about US academia.

The word 'faculty' used as a collective noun, in a similar way to 'staff', but always 'faculty' never 'the faculty'.

Professors whose title is Dr.

Everyone has a middle initial and uses it.

A sort of lack of departments. Maybe they just call them something else.

My head hurts. I'm listening to a horrible classic fm type radio station viw i-Tunes on the office mac. The music's OK, but it's all chopped up into little bits, like someone's taken a selection of classical and baroque CDs and put them all into one big shuffle. Which is probably what it is. With a teeth-setting-on-edge computerised voice in between tracks telling you what each one is.


What I really want to listen to is Radio 3, but I can't make Safari find the plug-in to make realplayer work. So I'm stuck with this.

I think I'm stressed because I know I've got to write an essay tonight, but first I've got to do some work and what I need to do is fairly uninspiring and mindless and involves negotiating US university websites which are unfamiliar and therefore irritating.

Better stop and get back to it then.

Friday, May 12, 2006

this little piggy

...is sleepy.

...is not so little, now I come to think about it.

...is going home soon.

...worked late last night, so is taking time off this afternoon.

...has to write an essay by Tuesday.

...wants new sandals.

...needs a new place to live.

...will be back on Monday.

...wishes she had interesting things to say.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

good thinking

I've been reading Anna Broadway's Sexless in the City blog for a while now. I like her honesty and humour. Today she has some good advice for any single woman who's ever complained about the wimpiness of Christian men.

Monday, May 08, 2006

where have I been?

Right here, just not posting. There's an abandoned post about the bank holiday weekend and that's it. Too busy or too boring to have much to say, sorry.

I've had a couple of good weekends though. Bank holiday weekend, a friend from Oxford, Chris, has in Cambridge, so we did lots of touristy things, went up the tower of St Mary's, found St John's (he's doing a DPhil at St John's in Oxford) and went to Evensong at King's, which was beautiful. Sunday night I sang in a concert in the village to celebrate the opening of the new recreation ground. That was a surreal experience. We were on between Ten Sing (local teenagers doing pop songs and drama) and the local village college (more local teenagers doing pop songs and some cringe-making comedy). So obviously we were singing opera choruses which fitted in nicely. Bank holiday Monday, I went to Ely cathedral. Ely's gorgeous and there was a choir rehearsing Rutter's Mass for Children for an evening concert, filling the space with sound.

This weekend: On Saturday I went to HipKnits in Sawbridgeworth (see knitting blog). The car refused to start when it was time to come home. It's been doing that a lot of late. Usually I just wait until it decides to start again but this time I called the AA, which turned out to be a good thing as the patrolman found and tightened a loose connection to the battery. So now Turq should behave himself. Yesterday was a very good day. I went to lunch at Ruth and Liz's house and stayed there all afternoon. Ruth and I went to St Barnabas for the evening service and ran into a couple of people I knew from Oxford. It's so long since I spent Sunday afternoon chatting with friends. Lovely!

Operation find Bekki-a-new-place-to-live needs to start in earnest. I'm feeling so isolated where I am at the moment. Not that I don't get on with my landlords, it's just that sharing a house with the owner is very different from sharing with other people who are also renting. It would be great to be nearer the centre of town, ideally lots of other people my age. It's a bit scary, but it needs to be done.