30 January, 2009

Where do I go from here?

I have been mulling about this for a while and had many discussions with other fellow bloggers and friends. The time has come for this blog to retire since I have moved on, and it has become a bit of a chore to try and drag up anecdotes and other occurences to fill in these entries to match the persona I started out with here. I have, however, set up a new blog and will be posting from there from now on. It feels right that embarking on a new chapter in life, a new blog is required.

I will be sticking with Blogger for now while I play around with other hosting sites and decide which one suits me the most.

So, from SimianExist, we now move on to the next stage of evolution:


See you there!

20 January, 2009

Where in the world is Oakdale?

This appeared in a side bar link and I'm intruiged about this piece of literature that panders to local residents. I think I'm going to start writing a book that all the Swiss-Romandes would be dying to read.

Chapter 1

Etienne looked at the clock. It was precisely 11.47 and 23 seconds. 'Only one minute and 7 more seconds before my pasta will be done' he thought. 'perhaps I should wash my hands...'

13 January, 2009

Happy Old Year!

Hi y'all, happy old/new year. Not much excitement there given all it seems to be is still gloom in the news. However, some interesting things have happened:

- The weather here has not been above 0°c since New Years Eve.
- I am shamefully addicted to the trainwreck of a website called GOOP which is hosted by none other than Gweneth Paltrow.
- I have joined a gym (yes, a gym) and am now going 3-4 times a week. Along with my non-drinking regime, and that OH and I have cut out red meat from our diet for now, along with some white meat (fish is still on the menu) I'm expecting the weight to melt away. It still hasn't shifted.
- My gym is full of really f***ing hot pieces. And it has a steam room, and a sauna. My last memories of a steam room & a sauna date back to 2005, pre-OH, and lots of naughtiness. That was also the time where in my haste to get away from a very keen sailor I opened the wrong door and found myself in an alleyway surrounded by bins and me wearing just a towel around my waist. In winter. And the door had shut tight on me with no way to get back in apart from going round the building again and through the entrance.
- I baked a loaf of bread from scratch. It was pretty easy but I panicked with the yeast when it smelt like horrid old gym kit but I looked it up online and it said that it was normal. I need to get a bread tin because I just flopped the dough onto a baking sheet to rise, and it rose upwards as well as outwards, and I ended up with something resembling a section dead coral reef. I think the hastily added sesame and sunflower seeds at the end contributed to the dead barnacle look.
- I'm not making any resolutions out aloud. I will go about them and if I succeed I can be smug, but if I fail, then at least no one will know that I attempted it.

Yes, Happy New Year to you all...

29 December, 2008


So, I look at my dismal stats and find out that someone came to this blog by typing into Google 'cat shitting everywhere'.

The surreal idea of being found via scatalogical felines is bewildering. I need to get back to reality.


2008 is finally ending and I can't wait. Work has been fraught and I've realised that an errant client doesn't like me and takes all measures to trip me up and possibly get me fired. However, I've worked with people like that before and I know what he's playing at, so hopefully I have all bases covered and manage to stay ahead of said client.

Christmas with OH and the in-laws was wonderfully quiet. Everyone just did their own thing, and the only marginal panic happened when I mistimed the cooking of the duck breasts. Panic over, all served and everyone enjoyed the meal.

On the Saturday, OH and I headed into Newcastle City Centre. Its an interesting place, with nice Georgian buildings in the middle, and the rest of it is surrounded by ugly concrete 'modern' buildings. Verdict: I couldn't live there because its ugly and I have trouble understanding the Geordie accent.

We boarded the Metro to head back to the car, parked 6 stops away by some members of OH's family that we discovered practised Sapphic love. On the way I lamented my misfortune of not being able to purchase the shoes I wanted since I forgot my ID and the shop was adamant they wouldn't accept credit cards without a form of it. To make light of the situation I attempted to tell OH I was heartbroken, in a Geordie accent.

OH looked at me and asked, 'Why are you speaking Welsh?'

08 December, 2008

Bright eyes...

I look out the window and the rain is lashing against the forlorn arms of the newly stripped poplars that line the street outside. A run-through in my head throws up the fact that I've just binned my last pair of rain-worthy shoes after a squelching walk to work Friday previously revealed a crack in one of the soles. Superglued back together, they lasted another week then promptly split on the sides.

(Note to self: make sure superglue is completely dry on soles before putting shoes on and standing on a newly polished parquet floor)

Then I remember that OH and I received matching snow shoes earlier in the year as a present from a friend who was excited that the outdoors shop near her had a closing down sale. These were black padded affairs with snow white faux-fur lining: Fauxmo-Ugg(ly) boots. I remember they're down in the nuclear bunker with the milk and other non-perishable goods. Looking through the cupboards I realise we need more tinned tomatoes, pasta and milk, so I make a trip down to level -1 for said things, plus waterproof footwear.

I get down past the heavy concrete lined lead door and unlock the grille. I fumble for the light switch and stay rooted while waiting for the energy saving light bulb to warm up. Phase One done. I walk over to the secondary holding area where the individial cells are divided by wooden slats and turn on the light and wait for it to light up again. Phase Two complete. I head down the corridor towards our allocated 'cave'.

The neighbours who have the cave next to us have an impressive wine collection, and when I am down there I love to peek through the slats to try and make out what new labels they've added. The last time it was a small wooden box yet unopened, with the unmistakable emblem burned on: PETRUS.

This time though I'm wondering what I'll see. I peer through the wooden slats and suddenly I let out a really bloodcurdling scream. I drop the keys to my cave and I remember that down here, no one can hear you. Its sealed from the world. It is, after all, a nuclear bunker. Still shaking, I pick up the keys and tell myself there's a reasonable explaination. I tentatively peer through the slats again.

There it is, an unmistakable glint in a pair of glassy eyes, staring straight at me. As the energy saving lightbulb gets more intense in the light glow, I can make out a head, and motionless arms extended towards me. I can also make out what is an old style perambulator and the eyes are those belonging to a doll. A shiver runs down my spine.

I breathe a sigh of relief, pick up the things I came down for and fled back to the safety of the world above ground.

13 November, 2008


- of winning the lottery? 1 in 14 million

- of being hit by lightning? 1 in 3 million

- of contracting an STD? 1 in 3

- of having my airline announce a pilots strike one day before I fly? Yes, its on.

Fuck the French work ethic.

11 November, 2008

One by one...

Recent events in the financial markets means that I've been supremely busy with little time for anything else. Today I sent an email to a friend of mine and it bounced back immediately, informing me that the email address was no longer vaild. As a result I have cause to think that she has been claimed as a victim of the wave of dismissals and redundancies that is sweeping through the city. I write a few more one liners and get similar results from a few, others reply more positively. I am unsettled, and despite being in a place which it best positioned to weather the storm, the industry itself is fragile.

However, on to lighter events. This morning on my way into work I saw:
- a discarded mattress with an almost perfect coil of dog poo on it. Was it art?
- 2 Calvinist nuns running in Salvation army sweaters over their robes and their rosaries flying behind, wimpoles fluttering in the wind.
- a fat woman on a bicycle who had to get off and push her bike up the slope because she kept rolling back down.

I am heading out to the West coast of the States on Friday and will post some pictures of the ocean and the sunshine. Until then, apologies again for the lack of updates.