Category Archives: Paul Carrack

Silent Floating

Oh fine, I hope I know what everyone wants to hear about, so lets have a duplicate blog tonight, so I can cover all events.

But before we get to that, let me just mention that today is Transgender Day of Remembrance, to remember those less fortunate than myself, over the years.

OK, to business, the flotation tank experience. I did check, and double check directions on Google Maps before leaving, but still managed to turn the wrong way when I got off the bus, but realised that in seconds, so no great issue.

The owner of the business quickly made me feel at home, and after the necessary form filling, I was soon in the room with the flotation tank. A shower, then in I went, and ‘laid’ down. If the roof was meant to come down to seal you in the pod, I never worked out how to do it. I’ve certainly seen enclosed pods, but whether this isnt set up for that, or was just me being blonde, no idea? Would have loved that, but in truth, once I turned out the lights, it was very dark, and apart from the whole enclosed sensation, would have been hard to tell the difference.

Yes, I relaxed easily, and just lay there enjoying the whole sensation, and loving the lack of any pressure on my fragile back. Anyway, once comfortable, settled, and everything else good, I decided to do a little experiment with self hypnosis, try to empty my mind a little (or ideally a lot) and see what developed from there.

It took me a while to get there (about 5-10 minutes too long, as I was to discover), but when I did, I tried to get a little bit of robot into my mind and body, but couldnt really get it to work, probably because robots dont generally float in water, lol.

So I went to Plan B, this time with startling success. Having emptied my mind of myself, I tried to self regress myself back to Clara Johnson. Incredibly, it worked. Snag was, Clara wasnt quite certain where she was, as these new age things werent around in the 1930’s, and panicked a bit finding herself seemingly floating in a dark room. I did set to trying to calm her down, and had just succeeded, and was just beginning to let her take control when I heard something I didnt want to hear, the music starting up again, which meant I had only 5 minutes left. So unfortunately, I had to say ‘goodbye’ to her, start to switch back to me, so I was back in control at the end of the session.

In truth, I have no idea if I was just going to let Clara experience the float, or whether I was going to ask her questions, as I never really reached that point. Not quite sure if I could ask her questions anyway, or whether someone else would have to ask ‘me’ them, in truth? I suspect would have to be the latter, as my mind was in Clara mode? So asking questions of herself, without a script?

So yes, I’m going to have to go back again, for sure, and this time get her involved far more quickly. If nothing else, seeing life through her eyes, and feeling her thoughts, for more than a few seconds will be amazing.

Another shower, a glass of water, then back to real life. Yes, cold, wet, and lousy services by First Buses!

Oh, and by the way, yes, the back feels a whole lot better too! So 2 pieces of good news, for the price of 1!

I can hear you asking, is she still going to try acupuncture now? The answer is yes, got to give both a chance, lets face it. And besides, they might use the needles loaded with robotising nanites! Yeah, I wish! 😛

But yes, the whole flotation tank experience, truly amazing for me, and maybe Clara needs to try it again, just to see how she really feels, lol?

Right, video time. Well, I was floating, not running, but otherwise it was certainly silent when the music stopped.

 

In the working years

Its funny to think, in the week when I reach 60, that as little as 8 years ago, if I’d been off this week (and fine, I probably wouldnt have been, in that case), I’d be retiring from work this week, and drawing my state pension. Yes, up to April 2010, women retired at 60, wow! Since then, much to the annoyance of those affected by it, the pension age for women has risen to 65, to match men, and in the next couple of years, will actually go up to 66, the age I will get to retire at. Dont get me wrong, something had to be done, as everyone (well, most people) seem to live longer now, so this was sort of inevitable.

One of the amusing challenges I have to look forward to, or think about in that case, is one of my occupational pensions! Yes, William Hill, round 2 (there have been 3 rounds in all), between 1985 (2 years after starting there) until I left in 1999, I was paying into an occupational pension scheme with them. And actually, that was drawable, even for a man back then, at the age of 63! And I guess if I’d worked there now, for 33 years, with 3 to go, it would be quite a decent sum! But no, it was about 14 years, so not a fortune (I’m guessing about £3000 – 4000 pa, from what I can remember of last salary), but better than nothing.

The thing is, since then, I’ve changed gender, I’ve changed name twice, and though ‘theoretically’ I’ve got the deed polls to cover that, I’m not sure how easy they would be to find? National Insurance number hasnt changed though, and at least one of those names was used on William Hill, round 3, so who knows how complex that would be? Still, something to think about in the next 3 years or so, for sure. Not a fortune, but given the state of my body, a top up to wages like that might be handy? And where I’d start, 22 years after leaving, no idea? Anyway, something to consider, I guess?

Its funny to think what I’ve packed into my first 60 years, though yes, the transition stands out as my proudest moment by far. Maybe one day, I’ll even brave the surgery, and get everything done, though as I’m not one for surgery now, for the sake of it, I cant see it, unless the need really arises to get ‘my bits bobbed’ as such.

Its funny though. I’ve written, I’ve acted, but in neither case, anything I’m likely to be remembered for. Well, up to now at least, anyway! Still a few years to go, hopefully, though how much more acting I will get to do, no idea? I know, given that I will definitely play the role on Friday, you could say I’ve got one more part, but I suspect I might be the only one looking at it like that! I suspect most, if not all of the others just see it as helping out, and being dressed in an old fashioned way, but we will see?

Writing, well I keep saying I might do more when I ease off work, but doesnt seem to be happening just yet. I only wish I could gather enough information to do a biography of a certain chorus line dancer, and bit part actress, but given she died in the 50’s, and any children (she mentioned one, a daughter, seemingly) would be in her late 70’s by now, if still alive, if I could hope to trace her!

Oh, other point of amusement for you. Not surprisingly, for someone who has spent so much of her life working in the betting industry, the Cheltenham Festival has always been a bit of a special event for me. When I’ve been able to, I’ve tended to take some time off that week, ostensibly because of my birthday, but hey, its good racing, so… Well this week, I missed a couple of races today (only able to watch 5 on ITV), because of the need to go to the doctors, I’ll miss all of tomorrow, due to getting things done to me for Friday, and then I’ll miss all of Friday, because of the Blackpool thing! Funny thing is though, I didnt really mind. Is it because I’m now a woman that I worry less about it? Who knows? I’ll let you know next year lol!

Right, thats enough, dont want to keep you here forever with my waffle. So, video time. In my humble opinion, one of the greatest singers of my lifetime. Yes, I used one of his songs recently, and here’s another!

Dont dream the snow is over

Oh fine, I’ll admit it, I’ve definitely started to get a case of ‘cell fever’ having been stuck indoors since last Tuesday morning, because of all the snow, ice, and stuff like that. I have to admit though, that its been nice being able to take ‘snow days’ from work since then (total of 3 work days), and not have to risk slipping over outside, and damaging knees, back, or both! Especially the latter, as I dread to think what further damage I could have done by going out, slipping over, and landing on my back, but anyway… It is still white out in the garden at present, but most of the snow is gone, the temperature is above freezing, so unless something dramatic happens overnight, I should get ‘release’ tomorrow to go back to work. Thankfully, if I believe the Weather Channel website forecast for next 10 days or so, I should be fine now, through to after my birthday. I know temperatures in the 40’s are hardly amazing, but a lot better than low 20’s!

The silly thing is, normally I can get by on less painkillers when not working, but yes, fine, that doesnt work so well in freezing conditions! Actually, I’ve only got 4 more working days as a 50 something now, as I’m off the week of my birthday. Mainly because of that, but yes, there is a little racing event called the Cheltenham Festival too, to enjoy as well. Irony, unless I remember to switch it on at the hotel in Blackpool, I’ll end up missing the biggest race of the week, the Gold Cup, despite that.

Oh, and another moment that shows I’m getting old, the rail trip will be made on a Senior Railcard, my first time. Yes, that hasnt changed from being available at 60! In fact, its available at that age for men too! The card might be £30, but by the time you add this trip in, the one to Scotland in September, a possible one from Manchester Airport in May, before anything else, I’ll easily cover the cost.

One other trip I need to book too, the one to Newcastle for work, which should be fine, seeing they’ve now had a week to register my account, and it should take 2 working days! Yes, had planned to do it Wednesday, but then the snow happened, so… And yes, tax payers, I will be using my Senior Railcard to save your money!…angel… Cheapest centrally based hotel available, with internet for me, I’m positive.

But yes, it will be nice tomorrow to actually be able to go out the front door, and ‘escape’ for a few hours, even if it will be at work. I like it here, a lot, but after nearly a week indoors…

An amusing moment before I go. You might remember I ordered a maxi length flapper dress for my work birthday dinner next Saturday? Well, comments on Amazon said it was too long, but I thought that just meant for women of short, to medium height, not to women of my height, at 5′ 9″ tall! Wrong, it actually needs taking up so I can walk in it, and as a good flapper girl should, show a bit of ankle! No, you dont want me showing knees lol, which is why I got a maxi one! Still, matter of getting it taken up is in hand, so… In truth, I’ll probably take it to Blackpool with me, just in case, as a back up.

Right, video time. You might have worked out the song, or maybe not, but you wont have guessed the singer, because its not Crowded House. One of the great ‘lesser known’ British voices of so many tears now!

 

How Short?

In truth, my hair currently is too long for my preferences. No, that doesnt mean its halfway down my back, or more, but its well below the bottom of my neck, which in my ‘vintage’ eyes, is way too long! What happened, you ask? Simple, I tried to grow it out for last September, and the wedding, because I thought I needed it a bit longer than the back of the top of the neck, or just below, which is my norm. It did get trimmed in November, in truth, but my hairdresser took off about the normal amount, so it was about my normal ‘just before cut’ length, rather than its normal level.

Lets just say I’m the low maintenance type, so keeping my hair in a respectable mane, at this length, not so good. Anyway, looking at the March calendar, it now seems that I have 2 20’s related events coming up in quick succession. And yes, what does that mean, in a hair sense? Yes, the bob!

No, I’m not thinking anything too drastic, a la Louise Brooks version, far too boyish in style, and lets face it, the last thing I want to look is boyish, lol! But a slightly less dramatic bob, why not? Sadly, with my hairline, I have no chance of getting anything even vaguely resembling the Brooks bangs, or the helmet fringe, only wish I could! But a longer bob, without the dramatic bangs, at least I’ll look the part, if not the age. Lets face it, those flappers were young, in their twenties at most, and one of those events is on my 60th Birthday! So fine, unless someone can make me look a whole lot younger, lol…? And yes, the dress will be the one in the last blog, not one that will be above my knees!

So yes, big question, just how short do I dare go, without the boyish looks issues, both length, and volume? And yes, I am staying blonde! Perfectly natural, oh I wish!

But yes, if I’m going to do this 20’s thing seriously, for 2 lovely events, I need a bob cut… just how much of a cut?

Fine, video time. Lets just say its someone asking the opposite question, and leave it there!