Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Anti-Colouring Book

Design a postage stamp for the first letter mailed from Mars:

The beautiful in-between bits

I have a new-found respect for the words "unremitting" and "unrelenting".

The most accurate description of anything, ever, has to now be "a swine of a climb up the B6278 to the Waskerley Way, aptly called Crawley Side".

Coast to Coast

Whitehaven to Tynemouth traversing some of the most beautiful parts of Britain.

The start found us sheltering in a tunnel for Tesco's trolleys in a rather derelict Whitehaven (where the sea gulls like to party ALL night). The rain soon became a permanent feature of the holiday along with the wind, which, according to the C2C Bible, should be behind you. I can confirm this was not the case.

The finish found us sitting in the sun outside the Baltic sipping coffee and debating whether or not the newly-found sly cake was better than an Eccles.

Holiday reading...before the holiday

The guidebook I borrowed from the library informs me that the essential holiday reading for Kefalonia is Captain Correlli's Mandolin and The Odyssey.

The former was read long ago and I have no desire to re-visit it. The latter scared me half to death. Without opening the book to even peek at the pages I'd decided this was something I'd never manage. I had visions of lists of names that meant nothing to me - like in the Bible: the sons of Obed Edom - Shemaiah, Jehozabad, Joah, Sachar, Nethanel, Ammiel, Issacher and Peullethai or Russian literature - hang on, who's Bosoi? Is that the same fella as Nikanor Ivanovich?

However, having despatched all reading materials back to London by Parcelforce from the Lake District (along with the tent, sleeping bags and superfluous items of clothing; the hills!) I was in need of something to read on the train journey back from Newcastle.

Blackwell's provided me with The Odyssey. I'm wondering if, deep-down somewhere, the argument was put forward that having just cycled 160 miles in five days through the lakes and over the Pennines, wind-whipped and rain-lashed, I can now do anything. Including reading The Odyssey.

And, you know what? I can and I did and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I'm amazed.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Learning to draw

One of the things I thought I would never be able to do is draw.

On a whim I picked up an 'inspirational self-help' guide in the Tate (goodness ever knows why). Oh, what fun I have had!

It started off well when I drew a rounded bottom to my mug (Amnesty Women for freedom, freedom for women that I've had for about thirteen years). He (Danny Gregory) tells me "the test of whether they are really looking comes when they draw the bottom. Almost everyone will just draw a straight line across". And, I didn't.

I've realised I don't actually care how good my drawings are in the traditional sense. I'm enjoying myself immensely (and they can only get better!).
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A. I have been treading grapes.

B. My shoes got so wet at Ascot yesterday they dyed my feet.