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7th September 2018

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After a delayed flight, my sister met me at the airport in Warsaw. We had a coffee and a chat, then took a bus to the hotel. Between the bus stop and the hotel, got slightly mugged by a Muji. Yay stationery!


Got to the Sheraton. Our room is big and plush and lovely. Met our mother. I unpacked the Yorkshire Gold and we had a cup of tea.

I showed my mum the selfie I had taken at breakfast and she said I looked like a particular Israeli movie star in it. (Ayelet Zurer). I told her it was for compliments like that that I came. She also gave me a compliment on my haircut.

After a short rest we went out - we showed our mother a shop full of lovely things (much ceramics and other home wares)that we'd spotted on the way in. I took lots of photos.

Then we went to get food - we walked along a likely-looking street, which turned out to have *many* eateries, new world street, that is (Ulica Nowy Świat) and stopped at number 44, I think. There was a busy restaurant with traditional Polish food. We had beer, a blond draught beer and a cherry beer, and roast poerk, and bigos, and stuffed cabbage leaves, and pierogi. It was delicious, and the portions were large, and my mother especially was very happy to have pork again. It's something she grew up with (in Poland) and then could not get in Israel. I had meant to check Trip Advisor before we left the hotel, then got distracted and forgot, but the restaurant had a Trip Advisor recommendation sign on its wall, which I noticed after we ordered. So it worked out right.


We skipped dessert, we were too full.

We walked back to the hotel, stopping and looking at shop windows - the Ferrari dealership made a particular impression - and also paused to read some street signs.
one building had many Warsaw University things in it. A very educated building. Or possibly scholarly.

When we got back, we had sweets on the bed: a small wrapped piece of fudge for each of us.I rested for a bit, had a long shower, and am now up writing this. Very tired. I had a short night(stayed up late packing, got up early to get to the airport) and a long day.

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10th May 2018

toothache

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Today I woke up with a toothache that had showed up yesterday.

I called two different surgeries, found one that had an appointment today, and went.
I was very brave.
Read more... )

The thing is that with these antibiotics one cannot have alcohol, and it's the Eurovision Song Contest this Saturday! This is sad, but I will manage.

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3rd May 2018

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Yesterday's achievement:

made the tuna salad I'd been meaning to make for days.

Tuna salad:
recipe )

~*~*~

There was another thing I thought was an achievement but then I forgot what it was.

~*~*~

I am reading: several different things.

still reading Tourist's Guide to Ideal London and writing down comments, impressions and responses. Very slowly.

still reading the Pride & Prejudice Soulmark fanfic I mentioned before.

ADHD is Different for Women which rang familiar in many ways.

a mark, a mission, a brand, a scar Steve Rogers Captain America/Bucky Barnes The Winter Soldier Soulmark fic

I love that the soulmark trope exists, and seems to have been invented and developed in fanfic space, and is by now so familiar that people do variations and subversions of it. It's a whole thing. And I've only heard of one single book of not-fanfic where there's a soulmark (variant: timer countdown to meeting your soulmate).


Open in tabs are also an old alt.sex.bondage FAQ, which is where I first remember reading detailed information about anal sex and about fisting. Information from an informative source, not from fanfic. part 1, part 2, part 3

~*~*~

Oh! I just remembered what the achievement was: throwing out an old pair of underwear that was still comfortable but had holes in it. That was difficult to do.

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1st May 2018

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Yesterday's achievement: had a shower.
I used a new-to-me hair conditioner and then all evening this strange scent was following me around. I kept noticing it, instantly realising what it was, but I had to realise what it was every time, this strange new thing.

(it's probably a metaphor).

Today I was mostly reading An Ever Fixed Mark which is a Pride and Prejudice Soulmark AU fic. It has a lot of Colonel Fitzwilliam in it, and it's fun.

* * *

I've also written a bit of the mermaid story that lives in my head, and that felt good.
I discovered that Mermaids don't have milk, so when you go to the gelateria with them they have the sorbet. They're all lactose intolerant.
I wrote a few pages, then I got stuck again.

* * *

The pens that I ordered from Cult Pens arrived and I've opened and used one of them: the cheap Platinum Preppy one. I thought it was a single-use but actually it came with a cartridge, which was a pleasant surprise. On the other hand: the cartridge is a strange proprietary shape, and a friend warned me their nibs rust, so. I might designate it single use once the cartridge runs out.

The prettier one I haven't even unwrapped from the bubble wrap yet.

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24th April 2018

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Today: went out to see Derek, who was meeting an American friend of his, Sharon, and doing touristy things.

We met in Hackney - my app told me to go to Hackney Downs, but then the train to get to Hackney Downs failed, and the best alternative was tube+train to Hackney Central, which was where Derek had said to go in the first place.

We went into Oslo which is a bar + restaurant right near Hackney Central, and Sharon (who was also directed to Hackney Downs by the app) met us there.

They each drank a cocktail, but it was shortly after lunchtime and I'd only had breakfast, so I opted for elderflower cordial+soda.

Then we walked to Sutton House. Derek pointed out the Temple of Seitan on the way, and I realised I'd meant to go there at some point, to try their vegan fried chicken. I still haven't.

We got to Sutton House and it had a big National Trust sign on it and two big doors, both of which were closed: it was closed to the public today .
There were tables with chairs outside, so we sat down for a bit, tried to google 'tourist attractions in Hackney' , but Google suggested 'The Tower of London', so we realised it didn't know what Hackney means and Derek made a useful decision to head off. We took a bus to a train station (Dalston) and a train to Highbury and Islington, and from there, got the Victoria Line.
I just relaxed and let Derek make the decisions: I wasn't particularly needing to see any particular thing, or expecting any particular experience. It was an overcast day with a cool breeze, so I was okay to walk without getting hot and sweaty.

We got off the Victoria line at Euston, and went to the Wellcome Collection, to look at the exhibitions - I liked 'Alien Sex Club' that was a maze and was about the changing attitudes to HIV because it was interesting, and had some amusing bits
and I liked the one called Sire because it was amusing and had pretty elements
but the films about mirror-touch and synaesthesia did that thing that art video often does, of being boring.
Then there was one about free-diving and it was pretty, but there was video on two sides of a room and no benches, so the people who had come in first and sat down on the carpet were in a good position, and I felt uncomfortable about sitting down and uncomfortable about standing in the way, I tried to stand by the wall for a bit and enjoy the bright blue of the sea and the silhouettes people wearing a single flipper like a cetacean tail swimming by, but it got too much for me and I wandered out again.

(overall it was not the most interesting best art show).

We went to the cafe and I drank some Sparkling Blood (orange) - I like the flavour a lot but also I like exclaiming that I'm drinking sparkling blood, ominously.

THere was a green pea and lemon cake, we got a slice, it was bright green, and tasted of cake - it was iced with a vanilla (you could see the tiny seeds) cream cheese icing, decorated lemon zest and (I think) pea-shoots, pretty and green (but incongruous?).

Then we went and looked at an exhibition about Mister Wellcome, who founded the Wellcome collection, and enjoyed the historickal exhibits and photos of Mr Wellcome and his large moustache, and the note 'collected before 1936' that got more pointed and snarky the more I saw it appear, the current keepers of the collection snarking at the past keepers for not making clear notes and keeping things documented and organised.

There were drawers with little audio signs on them, to hear audio commentary about some exhibits, and drawers with hand-shaped signs on them, with little replicas of things that you were allowed to touch - including a replica of a mummified hand. I did not hold the mummified hand.

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20th April 2018

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Today has been achievementy.

I went out to see Love, Simon while it was still on in the cinema!
(The local cinema has it on at noon).

Anyway. I called for a taxi to get there in time.

Then my phone was out and I mis-touched it and it dialled the letting agency, and since I was waiting for a taxi and not doing anything. And it is a hot day today. I told them about the problem with the hot water, that I can't turn it on unless I turn on the heating. I had trouble explaining to the first person I spoke to, then I spoke to another person, and they seemed to get it. I explained that the radiators have to be on for there to be hot water for a shower, and I don't want to heat the whole house to have a shower, or to wash dishes.

So they said they'd get it sorted today. In stunning not-news, the hottest day of the year so far is a good day to get the boiler sorted. I now have hot water when I turn on the hot-water tap, without having to turn on the heating. (Do not ask how long that has been broken. But it had been cold enough that I needed the heating on anyway).

*

Love, Simon was very cute, fluffy and with a couple-three short moments of cringe where I had to look away from the screen. It looked just right, like I expect a teenage high-school movie to look.
Love, Simon )

I liked the movie, it was fun.

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16th April 2018

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Book:
Soul to Keep by Garret Leigh

bought based on rec by Roan Parrish. I'd been enjoying the (mostly m/m) romance books I'd been reading by Roan Parrish, so I bought this one based on the recommendation.

There's a man with a troubled past! There's another man with a very differently troubled past! They meet and are attracted to each other, and then, by coincidence, they meet again and they get to know each other better and develop a relationship! They help each other and fit in ways that are good, unexpected, and unlike their other friends. They get a happily ever after.

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Today I went out for brunch with the beloved.
We ended up at The Last Crumb (because the Good Egg had just closed their kitchen when we got there) And it was nice and they had shakshuka (which we had been planning to order at the good egg) so that worked out :)

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15th April 2018

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I have tidied up my boot file, from *eleven* versions of the operating system (I use Ubuntu) sitting there to just the three recentest ones, with the help of the sysadmin. The boot file now has more space. It won't pop up little red exclamation marks of being nearly out of space every so often, now.

It was a bit scary and stressful. Since the 1980s deleting things on the computer has been stressful, why isn't it better yet (It is better, and yet, still stressful.)

Then the sysadmin returned to being a tea-robot and made me a cup of tea.

I am now tempted to reboot the computer a couple of times, just to see that it still works. I am using the computer right now to type this, it is working. But will it work after rebooting?

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On Thursday I met the beloved at Spitalfields Market. We walked towards St Paul's Cathedral, and then crossed the street and sat in Coppa Club (which I thought was a cafe but turns out to be more of a restaurant- bar- type of place?).
Anyway, we sat down and had tea - They do fresh mint tea, this is a Good Thing.
Also we had food.
(beloved had truffled fried gnocchi, chorizo with a honey mustard &smoked paprika sauce, and a pizza with spicy sausage; I had fried courgette, and chicken liver pate on toast, and small pieces of fried chicken).
Then we ordered more tea and sat for a bit and ignored each other (I read a K J Charles and twitter, alternately, on my phone) just to have a relaxing time, mostly because the Beloved needed to be non-interactive for a bit.

After that we walked from St Paul's to Temple. and I saw that by sitting at Coppa we had not gone to the IndoChine Brasserie, Maison Mekong, which looked more interesting. http://www.maisonmekong.com/ (Such is London, sometimes/always there is something else that is going on and is interesting)

I took a photo of a dragon at the western edge of the City. The sky looked lavender. Across the Thames the London Eye was lit up in red, and the Beloved said that it was in low-power mode. (Me, I thought it was probably because coca-cola is the London Eye's current sponsor, but idk).

When I got tired I looked for the nearest tube station, it was Temple, and we went home from there. I don't remember using that tube station before, so it might have been the first time.

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6th April 2018

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Saturday the 24th March was Hunter's funeral.
Hunter )
*
funeral )

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25th March 2018

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I went and saw Hamilton (again!)
And it was so good, it was so vivid, this time. It felt more vivid than last time, like the colours were brighter and the velvet suits shinier.
Also I felt more emotionally open, maybe? I don't know, I have memory of the previous time, but it feels faded, like it's emotionally less clear.

Last time was a limited view, but closer to the stage, could make out the actors' faces. This time, further away, but could see the whole stage. Also, this time, more comfortable seats.

Note: Victoria Palace theatre, Royal Circle, row L, has more leg-room than I expected! It is nice to have lots of legroom. Also nice to be able to walk to and from ones' seat while other members of the audience can stay sat.

***
Was standing in the queue, and the woman behind me was very shocked! That there was a queue! And people were queuing outside! And she was asking "What if it was raining?" And I was so puzzled. This is England. If there's a queue in the rain, people just queue in the rain. She sounded English, too. I mean. People who go to the theatre do not get the made-of-sugar, melt-in-the-rain bodies.
(I mean, yes, okay, usually people can just buy tickets and wander into the theatre with their tickets, there's a particularly strict process for 'Hamilton' because it is such a popular fast-selling show and they want to prevent scalping and ticket-touting. But... a queue?!? In the UKoGBaNI??!?? shocking.)

I got to near the front of the queue, and they said the whole group who is going should come in together, but K was running a little late. So I told them my friend wasn't here yet, and they showed me where to wait, so we could go in together when she showed up. ...Unfortunately, I texted her that I was opposite the Pret a Manger. There's one behind the theatre and one in front of the theatre and there are 6 branches of Pret near Victoria. And she tried to get into the queue on the other side from the one I meant, And the British people queuing saw it as an attempt to violate the sanctity of the queue, and were very harsh with her :( Yet another argument against the homogeneity of the British high street.

in conclusion: Hamilton is good, also we should abolish capitalism.

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5th March 2018

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My sister was here for a visit with one of her children, which she does, every so often. This time it was a niece.

We wandered around doing touristy things - we went to the British Museum , and to Madame Tussaud's, and to the London Eye -
and to clothing shops(niece's preference) and to stationery shops(my sister's preference)

And they were brave in the cold and snow. My niece was fascinated by the snow - she went and touched the snow where it was piled up white - and then she complained of her hands being cold. (I told this to the beloved, who replied: "I can see the family resemblance"). My Sister had a warm winter coat, and a hat. Niece had a hat and a scarf and a coat, and on the second day here she was bought a pair of boots and a pair of gloves.


*

My sister likes fountain pens and she has started collecting them a few years ago. So some of the stationery shops we went to, she chose specifically for their specialisation in fountain-pens and ink.
At one shop she bought an extra of a pen she already had, and bought me a pen as a present. And some ink.
At her last night, just before packing, she gave me the extra pen she had. After she'd filled it with sparkly ink, too.

*

Today I found a fountain-pen I had lost at home. It's a Kaweco sport, so it just looks like a short-ish plastic tube - black, in this case. And I could not think where to find it. It had been tidied away into the cutlery drawer, and was among the teaspoons and tea-strainers.

So now I have two new pens and one almost-new.
(And two older fountain pens and two single-use pilot v fountain pens. Though there are videos on youtube on how to re-fill the single use pens.)

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17th February 2018

Movies

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So Black Panther opened in the UK and Derek said let's go see it, and I said sure.
Only we agreed to go see it on Valentine's Day, in a cheap(-for-London) cinema in an area with a numerous black population. ... And did not arrange to buy tickets
in advance.
So I got there and got in the queue and while I was in the queue they announced that tickets were sold out. (I stayed in the queue because I wanted to buy a sugary drink).
We tried another cinema near there, but it was sold out too.

* * *
I went home, and as I got off the bus, I bumped into the beloved. The beloved had plans to play D&D with a regular online group, but the plans fell through, too.

So we accidentally ended up spending Valentine's Day together. The beloved had even seen a chocolate bunny on the way home and bought me one >:)

It was a quiet evening - but it was nice.
* * *

Today - Friday - I went to see The Shape of Water in the cinema, with Derek and Mia (and a planned Holly, who was sadly not well enough to join us).

The Shape of Water is referred to by a friend as "an Abe Sapiens origin story". It's directed by Guillermo Del Toro. There's a water-monster trapped in a secret government lab. There is a woman who falls in love with him. There are also spies and scientists.

It was a beautiful fantasy and I liked it very much.

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13th February 2018

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the tourist's guide to the ideal london
I have finished reading chapter 18 and need to type out my reactions and email to derek, and I have started reading chapter 19.

*
I have ordered a parma-violets flavoured gin for the beloved and me. The beloved likes both parma violets and gin, so this should be nice.

*

I put Animal Crossing - pocket camp in my phone and I play it. I like it.
(I seem to have started weeks after other people I know did and now I can't be bothered to dig back in their social media feeds to look for the id number to send friend requests to).

*

I think my cold is getting better. Or I am getting better from my cold. Something like that.
I have a scab just under my nose and it's very tempting to pick at it. I bought the tissues with a balm in them, the brand-name ones, for to be gentle to my nose.

*

Plans for this week:
Wednesday: Black Panther
Friday: the Shape of Water

*

The beloved bought a beer from online and it was delivered today:
Campfire Strannik Imperial Stout with Marshmallow. It was very tasty, and has a sweetness that I like.

*

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6th February 2018

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I've been ill this past week.
It's a cold, with a cough and a runny nose.

It started with a fever and headaches, and that was relaxing because it was very tangible illness. I didn't have the guilt and the feeling that I should be able to do things, and I'm just lazy. I was very obviously and clearly sick.

I'm getting better and I still have very little energy, and I like that I am getting better but the guilt over my laziness is coming back too, and I do not enjoy that.

* * *
In season six Buffy the villain is mediocre white men and the horror of the absolutely disproportionate amount of power they have in the world, and almost everything stems from that.

The Musical episode has the lack of responsibility - not considering the effects of what they do, not owning up that they did the thing.

Of course it's horrible.

* * *

I have been watching television on Netflix:
The Good Place

and One Day At A Time.

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26th January 2018

I went to see Hamilton in London!

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I went with friend duckbunny to see Hamilton, because he had a spare ticket and offered it to me!

I suggested Tozi to eat first, which is a good Italian restaurant near Victoria, and it turned out they have a pre-theatre menu:

We had fried tentacle monster, and roast baby dinosaur
and a tiny pizza and some pasta and a salad
and a fig tart with ice cream for dessert.

And we enjoyed it all (though the calamari was slightly less crisp than it could have been).

Also we had coffee, it was tasty coffee.

And then we went to see Hamilton!
The theatre was very conveniently near.
There was a queue around the corner and along the street to claim tickets and get in (there are no paper tickets, you get your tickets when you show your credit-card you booked with), but we got there at about seven and the queue moved quickly.

The inside of the theatre is pretty, nice new carpets and well lit, but still - *lots* of stairs. We were at the top part, which I don't remember what it's called, in a bench on the left - which had restricted views of that part of the stage- but it was still so great.

I didn't know how much I would like it. I had listened to the original Broadway cast lots, and liked it, and I didn't know how much of the more there would be, to actually watch it live.

But it was a lot, I found it very moving and affecting, and funny bits made me laugh, and I enjoyed it a lot.

Read more... )

*
I think I am coming down with a cold.

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30th December 2017

before christmas

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Went up to Yorkshire with the beloved for the weekend before Christmas, and a couple of days either side. We often go up for Christmas itself, but this year it wasn't possible.

York was beautiful.
We stopped at the Maltings and had chips (and a couple of other things). The food is nice and the chips are great and we forget between visits how huge the portions are.

Went to DemiJohn and the beloved was remembered from last time.

I went to the shop that does extra wide shoes to buy myself a new pair. I had been trying to get them online and it did not work. But they only had one pair in my size and width requirement, and that was in a beige that I would not wear. It was discouraging.

At a Christmas market the Wham! Christmas song played, as I was passing through. But I was not there for the whole song, I don't know if that counts.

The shambles had something like four different Harry-Potter themed shops. Just a lot of them, all next to each other.

We stopped often to sit and drink. I got tired very easily.

Later we met Liza and went with her to Betty's - it was open until nine in the evening. We were expecting a very long queue, but there wasn't - there were just a few people inside the shop, not a queue all the way out and around the corner.

*

We also went to Betty's in Ilkley, and I had a rosti, and with that and a doughnut from Crosstown Doughnuts on the way up, I felt like I had done hanukka right.

*

On the way back we stopped at the parcel yard pub *in* King's Cross, which has: lots of space and a lift directly up to it - and it was a good place to pause and relax before continuing the journey home.

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14th December 2017

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* On Thursday (30th November) I went out with the beloved to Strut and Cluck, which is the currently open restaurant of the people who did Delamina at the Taste of London festival. (Delamina will open in February).
We ordered lots of starters and they were each delicious - not very complicated, but well-treated good ingredients.
Then I realised that between the roast cauliflower and the crispy rosemary potatoes and the pita balagan (which had some rocket and some bacon on it, I think) and the lettuce cup, I had not ordered any aubergine dishes, and I was sorry for the missed opportunity. But full and happy with the things we had ordered.
The beloved had the shawarma main and I had the sliced turkey and we both had lots of zhoug - theirs is delicious, but hardly any heat to it.

They have nice tea. I had an earl grey when I got in from the cold, and at the end of the meal I had a lemon grass and ginger and cardamom one. the tea-bags are branded with 'strut and cluck' labels.
(Though they serve it wrong - a teabag next to a cup of boiled water.)

*

Being out with the beloved, I asked if the beloved would join me to go to the Christmas Distraction Club - I'd only just got around to buying tickets when there were 2 left for sale, so I grabbed both. But I didn't know if the beloved would have time, or not be on call, and such.

The Distraction Club is in a basement under a pub - some wifi is sometimes available, but not v. reliable, not good for being on call.

But the beloved could and did come with me, and it was a fun evening.

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29th November 2017

Hanuka songs שירי חנוכה

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For my own use, and because Hannuka starts on the evening of 12th December this year. And because some people think there are no Hanuka songs, Which annoys me every time.

Youtube video, forty minutes of Hanukka songs )

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