So, as promised, the review of the year starts here. It will finish tomorrow, and then at the start of the new year, I’ll take a look at what 2019 might hold, some of it very likely, some of it unlikely, but might be fun if it does.
2018 actually saw something happen, that I’d never done in my 44 years of working life, I was told not to go to work! Yes, a combination of the fragility of my back, and some very cold, and icy weather saw me put on ‘winter weather leave’ for a few days. It made sense in so many ways in truth, but was still a bit of a novelty to me. But agreed, if I’d slipped over, landed on my back, and especially my spine, well you wouldnt want to think about the potential outcome, lets face it. Pretty sure its likely to happen early in 2019 too, especially given the deterioration in my wrist too, but we will have to wait and see on that. In truth, after about a week of that, I was getting a bit of ‘jail fever’ but it was a very wise move, so kudos to my employers for letting me do it.
While on about work, I started working on an LGBT committee at work, which was definitely a fun thing to do. Yes, was, more on that over next couple of posts.
Something else that happened early in the year was also work related. One of my colleagues got notice of volunteers needed for the Blackpool Film Festival in March, and the rest, as they say, is history! I wont claim it as strictly the revival of my acting career (its more a natural performance thing, no scripts), but it was a moment that led to the return of my time performing in public.
This year, it was a flying visit, arrived in Blackpool on the Friday afternoon, left again on the Saturday morning, due to fate, and a memorable date. Yes, the night of my flapper revival was my 60th Birthday! The works celebration was done a week earlier (would have been anyway), but the ‘house’ version was delayed until the Saturday night, which was why we needed to get back as we did.
Yes, a decade or so ago, that would have been it, retirement, which in truth, the body probably needs already. Now, officially it will be March 2024, though I have my doubts my body will hold out that long, but we will see? If it does, I might plan to retire (or take holiday) from work a couple of weeks early, because as things stand, the Iditarod race will start from Anchorage on 2nd March (restart at Willow on 3rd), and that would be an amazing thing to do, and a sort of dream come true. Nome as well? Well, maybe, but all that is a long way off. More on my preferred retirement option in part 2 tomorrow night.
May saw my return to Seattle for the first time in a few years. A few firsts there. Another state bagged, as I flew in via Las Vegas, so getting Nevada as my 24th state. Hopefully get 25 ‘somewhere’ next September, maybe? Ask Kate on that one, lol. She knows the one I’d love it to be, but its not renowned as the most friendly LGBT state in the US, so maybe not? There are a couple of New England options for that title too, so we will see.
The other big first on that trip, was my first Mariners game. It was memorable for more reasons than one, good, and bad. Good, they won. Bad, disability related issues. To be fair to the club, I complained, got a free ticket in the disabled area later in the week, and a few souvenirs as well, they handled it all very well.
Lastly, in the first half of the year, was a return to Blackpool, for World Pier Day. Again I have to thank a colleague for covering my Saturday shift to enable me to do this. Went back even further in time, as an Edwardian Lady, though I never got tightly corseted, cant have everything, lol. Amusingly, it was also Blackpool Pride day, and though I heard a lot of that, didnt get to see it at all. 2 trips already planned for Blackpool in New Year, but more on that on Tuesday, one of which you may not want to miss!
Well, the year certainly hasnt been a drag, but when this came up in my You Tube suggestions tonight, I couldnt resist this 1930 offering. And yes, a certain ‘fluffy haired’ blonde definitely looks like it could be Clara Johnson!
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!
Well, maybe I have been talking to myself, and feeling old? Fine, if that, and the blog title dont give you a clue to the video tonight, you’re way too young! Unlike me, but anyway…
I dont ever remember school closing for bad weather, but then again, that was about 50 years ago, so I’ve either forgotten, or it never happened? And given my first year at school included the brutal winter of 1962/63, I might be wrong, but hey, I was only 4, or 5 at the time, so something like that would easily pass me by, I guess? Nowadays, it seems to happen in a lot of winters. Is it just health and safety, is it just people getting softer, or is it quite possibly, the thought that if someone has an accident in said weather, that accident compensation claims will fly like confetti?
Up until yesterday, I’d had one day off work since moving up to Yorkshire, due to the weather, and even then, I walked into Huddersfield through the snow (about 2 miles), and it was only when I got to the railway station, to find that no trains were running, that I gave up on the prospect of getting to work that day. Yes, I then walked back home, there was no public transport whatsoever. But then again, I was healthy back then, so…
As those in the UK know, and maybe others too (at least 1 US friend commented on our winter weather overnight), we’ve had a ‘bit’ of snow this week. And yes, fine, at the time I was due to leave for work, the buses were running, just. Let me add, that about 35 minutes after that scheduled time, both the buses from the estate, and the buses to Bradford got suspended for a while. So whether I would have got to work, who knows?
As you might have gathered already, I have no idea on that, I never left home. Nowadays, there is an allowance called ‘snow days’ for when travel to work, especially for as distant as I am, is tricky, or impossible, you dont go. Normally you’d go to your nearest office (I could have gone to Job Center in town, I’m sure), but it was quickly agreed that I would be going no further than the front door. Lets face it, the last thing you’d want is me trying to get into town, having an incident, and being out of action for months, due to my back, or my knee issues. Not that I’m one of those ‘sue at all cost’ types, but still, if I damaged my back really badly…?
In truth, its no better today, and I doubt it will be much better in the morning, but I will see what its like before making a decision on that. I have this old fashioned feeling called guilt over such matters, even if it is the sensible thing to do. But fine, if its really crazy to try to get to work? I know, if it wasnt for my back, I would probably have tried it yesterday, but age, wisdom, and pain have made me more cautious, I guess? Ah well…?
Oh, and second piece of amusement, I’ve decided to give into modernity, and get a mobile phone. A very basic one, as a birthday present, but in truth, probably a wise call. I’m sure it will only get used in emergencies, or as on my birthday, as a means to call for a taxi (at Blackpool, to get from station to hotel, would be one of those), maybe? But fine, I’m getting old, I’m getting fragile (fine in both cases, should be got, not getting, probably), so having something like that to hand, not a daft idea. But yes, nice and simple, it will make and receive calls, it will be able to send and receive text messages (dont wait for me to do so), but that will be it! Oh fine, if you believe rumors, lots of 20’s and 30’s movie stars had one, care of time travel lol. I mean, there are pictures, there is film on You Tube, and…I’ll stop laughing now! But I wont be advertising the number, for sure!
Oh, and one last thing to show I’m old. This weekend (tomorrow, if I need another snow day), I’ll be ordering a Senior Railcard for myself. Yes, you can still get those at 60 (regardless of gender), and you can place the order online 14 days before your birthday. So… Will definitely get used this month, thats for sure. Blackpool (for myself), and Newcastle (for work) will both be a third cheaper thanks to it. Fine, it costs £30, but when you add in Scotland, in September… way in front!
OK, video time. Big clues at the start. Sadly, one lady who has never had to concern herself with the issue of getting old, she died far too young!
No, dont worry, it was nothing significant today when I woke up, and though we’ve had a few snow showers during the day, it still hasnt amounted to anything dramatic. Yes, I hope its the same when I get up in the morning, though if you believe the so called weather experts, I might be disappointed. They do say the worst day will be Thursday, when thankfully I dont have to leave home, but I wouldnt mind even that being something that doesnt come true.
To show how slight it was up here, the buses kept running, no issues. And lets face it, they are more than happy to stop running at the slightest excuse. Yes, I walked through snow on the way to Physio this morning, though such an insignificant amount that even a ‘frail old lady’ like me could cope with it, very easily. To be fair, I think its been worse down south, than up here, but believe me, I have no desire to go and investigate that.
Therefore I was surprised when I reached the Physio clinic this morning, to hear that I was the first to turn up for my appointment. Yes, there should (probably) have been 3 ahead of me, and the 1 behind me had cancelled too. Yes, there was snow on the ground, but no, it wasnt slippery out, and the roads were clear, as per the fact that the buses were all running around town.
Of course, to be fair to those people, as the clinic said, most, if not all of those people would have been older than me, and lets face it, you have to have some level of frailty to be going for Physio in the first place! Still…?
I have to admit, in advance of my last treatment next Tuesday, that I can honestly say my knees havent felt as good as they do now, in years. I’d love to say thats just down to the electricity that has got pulsed through my knee, but I’d be lying if I did. Not saying that that, and the ultrasound treatments havent played a big part, but so have the very simple exercises I have to do, as they have definitely strengthened the muscles in both knees that needed it. Oh, and the electrics have definitely made my circulation better, both my feet are pink (or almost pink) again, as blood has started to be forced to flow down to them. The old scars on the right knee are never going to go away fully, but they’re far less noticeable too, for the same circulatory reasons.
Now, if only she could zap my back (or my whole body?) like that…? 😀
But yes, seriously, I’ll be glad when the weather gets a lot warmer, especially for my back. Unless someone wants to buy me a home, somewhere with all year round heat…? No, thought not!
OK, video time. Its the wrong type of weather, technically, but its a gorgeous song, so lets roll with it tonight
Indeed, if you believed the idiots doing the long range weather forecasts 2 months ago, we should now be in the middle of continuous snow, from mid November, until mid March. Yes, we had a little bit of snow, briefly, but that was it! The irony is that this is about the 4th winter in a row that they have forecast Arctic conditions for months on end. We could still have some yet, but I wont hold my breath!
So this is it, the last post before Christmas Day. The rest of the week will include the traditional review of the year, though it might get a bit unbalanced, as a lot more happened in the last 4 months, than in the first 8, so it will probably end up being split that way. There will also be the traditional look forward piece, all the things I’m expecting to happen, a few that could happen (some more unlikely than others), and a few that would be fun, but almost certainly wont happen! So yes, a dreamed of, alien abduction might just appear in that last section lol!
Well, I know of 2 presents, one that I specifically requested when asked for, and one because we were expected to open our ‘Secret Santa’ presents at work. Beyond that, no idea! Nothing dramatic, I’m sure. Definitely safe to say no alcohol this year. A maxi length flapper style dress would be fun, but given that no one has asked my clothes sizing, I’m pretty sure thats not coming. Not that flappers did maxi length dresses, but I’m not 20 something any more! Was I ever, lol? Oh, the delights I missed out on by not being a girl when I was younger!
So yes, Santa, if you want to arrange for me to wake up in the morning, as a young lady, with a cute figure, and all the right bits, I would be so grateful!
Oh, and lastly, it seems that I’m going to reprise the Elf role quite quickly, tomorrow in fact, for a young lady visiting here at present. Wasnt my planned outfit for tomorrow, but will sure be fun, all the same.
So, at this point, I’ll take the opportunity to wish all my readers, a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, or Seasons Greetings, whichever you prefer. Yes, thats definitely the Civil Service neutrality option lol. Tonights video is probably my favorite Christmas song, probably because its not your usual saccharine effort, just the opposite in fact. Sadly, Greg Lake is no longer with us, but thats no reason not to play this live version, all the same.
I hope you get the Christmas you deserve! 😉
Alright, fine, given that I didnt want to do another passport office, or weather related blog, I thought I’d give this a whirl. Neither situation is great at the moment, but thats beside the point. Though in a sense, this came about because of the weather in the US, but anyway…
It seems this video has pretty much gone viral, so you’ve probably seen it before, so I’ve pinched one of the shorter sections
Yes, absolutely adorable, but people do forget that parts of China do get well below freezing in winter (Harbin has an ice festival), so this may not have been as much of a shock for this panda, as some might have thought. He had probably never seen anything quite like it in Washington, mind.
So fine, someone decided to play along with it, and this morning, I saw this,
Yes, great fun, and probably not a bad way to stay warm in some parts of the US at present, safely inside of that outfit, even when rolling in the snow. And yes, most definitely I would, given the chance. Which leads me on to…
I’m actually putting up tips for a site, on Facebook. No, not anything I dont like, like football, or stuff I dont think I know enough about, like horse racing, but on the sports I think I do, like American Football, and Golf. And fine, I’m doing a decent job on it, even more so after posting a number of winning selections for the Carolina game on Sunday. Not getting paid, but at least its keeping the mind ticking over, if not assisting the ever decreasing bank balance! There is a very good subscription service there too, I might add. Any gamblers who want details, ask at any of my many routes of contact (Here, Facebook, Twitter), and I’ll provide you with them.
But at the moment at least, I’m just posting on the non subscription board, along with a few others. What happened last week was that someone posted suggestions for one of the all weather meetings, and they didnt do very well. Someone else took note of them, backed them, and lost money, and then proceeded to call the whole thing a group of muppets, or something like that. At which point silliness abounded, and the Miss Piggy jokes started to flow, and developing into a few other muppet characters for other regulars. The trouble is, both us ladies fancied being Miss Piggy, but anyway…a few photos went up about it, great fun.
Oh, and me, I love the whole dress up idea, whether you call it cosplay, or just dressing up, take your pick. So yes, fine, I commented that I’d happily dress up in any of those type of suits, given the outfit, and given the chance. But fine, especially at the moment, I’m in no position to buy any for myself! But if anyone wants to get me something, I’ll definitely provide photos, though I cant guarantee playing in the snow, around here!
I know, not going to happen, but it would be fun! Oh, and one last photo before I sign off, this got posted on one of the many vintage type boards I inhabit on Facebook today, a couple at the races, about a century ago.
Not quite what I’d normally wear to go to Doncaster races on Saturday (if invited), but I would if the outfit was provided, you bet I would!
Lastly, the video. Well, as so often, the clue is in the title, though its not one of Madonna’s greatest musical moments, I must say
Yes, I know a few people who were hit by the snow storm over the weekend, on the East Coast of the US. Thankfully, as far as I know at least, all are fine. As an added treat, Storm Jonas is now heading for the UK, but thankfully (I think?) by the time it gets here, having crossed the Atlantic and all, it wont be snow that hits us, it will be rain. Mind, given how flooded some areas have been in Yorkshire, I’m not sure that a possible 4 inch dump of rain is necessarily a good thing?
I have seen several feet of snow on the ground before. Thankfully, I was on a nice warm train, crossing the Rockies in the winter of 2003. And by the time I got off the train briefly, in North Dakota, it wasnt snowing, but was exceedingly cold! Minus 25F, dont ask me what that is in centigrade, but its cold. But of course, much of the snow had been swept off the platform, so all was fine.
Thats not to say I havent been out in a snow storm, because I have. November 2014, in Albany, I experienced a snow storm where 11 inches of the stuff was dumped on the city. Do you know what, the buses kept running, though admittedly, that was down a main road, I’m not sure if it was the same on lesser routes, but…they were used to it, nothing ground to a halt, unlike when we have more than an inch over here, probably less!
I’ve seen pictures of New York, I’ve also seen pictures of more rural areas, and the way the snow built up, is quite amazing. Yes, I know, public transit was stopped in places, roads were closed in a few too, but I do think that was wise on the whole.
Who, me, I prefer California weather, I think. Last night I was watching the golf, from Palm Springs, much more my kind of weather lol!
Given that one dear friend on Long Island, said he would do nasty things to anyone singing ‘Let It Snow’, I thought I’d better choose something else for the video tonight, so you can have this Doris Day track instead.
I think its fair to say that if I was 25-30 years younger, or if I had a man who cared for me as much as Nicole does, then maybe I’d be taking the same step as she is doing on Thursday. Yes, thats right, that last element of transition to womanhood, that last big operation.
I wish her well, naturally.
Maybe one day I will feel the need to take that last step, but for now, given my age, given my single status, and everything else, I just cant face the hassle of going through all the necessary hoops now, especially given that I’ve lived as a woman full time for 4 years now anyway, twice the supposed required period for the next step. Irony, I know…
The funny thing is, when I first got to meet Nicole back in 2004, I was the one already living part time at least as a woman. And all I’ve done since then is move to living full time as a woman, changing my name, and gender in the process. Well, fine, the passport office says I’m still a man, but they are the only ones that do. Judging by the confused look I got at Atlanta Immigration in September, I think the guy thought there was a mistake with my passport!
But anyway…that last big step…hmm?
As I say, Nicole is a fair bit younger than me, and has a man that cares for her, so the transition makes a lot of sense. Me, maybe one day…who knows? Though I must admit, the idea of going to meet my maker, with that thing attached, doesnt fill me with joy! Maybe I should put it in my will that it gets cut off, pre cremation lol!
Anyway, just wanted to say, Nicole Woodhouse, my best wishes, admiration, and everything else goes out to you. Maybe one day you’ll be writing the same thing about me!
The video, something that gave me the idea, turning the corner in your life.
The other most exciting element of current news? No, I havent yet decided what dress I’m wearing on Thursday. At this rate, I’ll be taking more than one with me…rolls eyes! Just a shame, that given I’m getting my hair done, my make up done, that the weather forecast is so awful. Ah well…
So fine, picking up from where I left off last time around.
Yesterday morning, at 11.00, I was picked up from my hotel by S, and whisked back to Worcester, to catch the bus back to Albany. Another entertaining chat en route, which led to me discovering that in fact ‘Jean’ was still in my head, and just needed releasing, to make a show. First S did it, just to sort things out between him, her, and me. More correctly, him, my sub concious and me, but that’s just nit picking. Next thing I know, I’m told to do it for myself, and lo and behold, here’s Jeannie!
But before anyone gets any ideas, there are only 2 people that can wake her up, S, and me! Carla is safely tucked away though, before anyone thinks otherwise.
So fine, I’ve quickly discovered that there is a firm that makes Trans Pennine Express look punctual, and that’s Greyhound buses! Anyway, we finally get away from Worcester about 20 minutes late, and head for the Mass Pike, and the journey home. Big snag, accident on the Mass Pike, was a crawl (or slower) for the first 10 miles, and we finally reached Albany 2.5 hours late! Consolation, the most wonderfully sweet taxi driver on the way home, lovely guy, got a better tip than I normally would give, for sure!
Fine, it was well publicised on the news, and on websites that Albany was going to get hit by a big snow storm about the middle of today. So fine, I went out early, and not far, to a nearby Mall. Alright, time for a little fun, I let ‘Jean’ go shopping instead. Now, that was fun! Main moment of amusement, well it seems that Jean possesses quite a Kansas accent. Slightly combined with my own, but predominantly…
Fun moment, when I mentioned about flying back to the UK to one of the cashiers, given my Kansas accent, she asked me when I moved to the UK. I muttered some random year, and just left it at that! Alright, I did think about getting my sub concious to swap me back, change accents totally, (and huskiness of voice) and confuse her, but I’m a good girl, so I didnt.
By the time I got back out of there, the snow was in free fall, with plenty on the ground. Sadly this morning, I’d lived up to my blonde reputation, and only gone out in shoes, and a medium ‘strength’ coat, instead of boots and anorak. I knew it was coming, so why I did that…no idea?
Its different, seeing so much snow, when its only November. The last time I saw this, was about 2000, in Kirkenes, Norway, and thats the other side of the Arctic Circle! Mind, that was the beginning of November, not the end, so…
Right, you’re now up to date, and no, despite the clearness of the roads at least, I’ve decided to forego the Ice Hockey match in town tonight. I’m not the biggest fan of the sport, but if the weather had been good, I might well have gone. But now…
The video, sums up today’s weather really.
So, yes, fine, I know, you want to hear about Thursday night, but you’ll have to be patient, as something far more entertaining is happening.
OK, unless you’re an NFL fan, or you live in the Philadelphia area, you may not get it, so let me explain. Over here, it used to be the running joke that 2 spots of rain, and cricket would come grinding to a halt, at a professional level at least. Not quite sure if that was strictly accurate, but pretty close to it, all the same. Things have changed nowadays at least, though when it gets bad enough, they still come off the pitch.
Football (soccer for my North American readers) does at least tend to be played in the rain, though pretty often it doesnt take too much before the pitch gets waterlogged. As for the arrival of a flake of snow, well, thats it!
Tonight, on Sky Sports, they are showing the match from Philadelphia, and to say its snowing, would be a mild understatement, its an absolute blizzard there. But have they called off the match, or even delayed it? Hey, no! They play on. But yes, before you ask, its not really been the best game to watch, pretty much the opposite in fact. One score in the first half, wouldnt be surprised if thats not it for scoring in all honesty!
Oh, and in Green Bay, they are playing, and the current temperature is 11F (minus 12 for Brit’s).
So please, the next time they say soccer players are brave, playing in ‘whatever’ conditions, dont believe them, they have it easy!
The video, something apt for Philly