Slowly nibbling my first advent calendar chocolate as I have a look back over November.
It didn't start so well.
I’d been experiencing weird niggling back pain for some months — I went to the GP, who told me it would be a 4 – 6 month wait to see a physiotherapist (and I’d have to start that wait again as of January when we moved onto a new NHS list up North), or that I could pay for an osteopath privately.
My lack of disposable income, coupled with my housemate’s perhaps irrational suspicions that osteopathy wasn’t really a real thing led me to continue to ignore it. UNTIL NOVEMBER 1ST when everything got really horrible and I woke up in the middle of the night basically unable to move.
I booked to see an osteopath that day. She wiggled me round a bit, did some unnerving clicking, and everything started to get better from there on. I went once more a week later, and now, one month on, after all those months of badness I’m apparently fixed. The lesson here: osteopathy is a real thing and it works. I highly recommend my osteopath, because she was the cheapest in Brighton and clearly did a good job!
This drawing was me stood in her room feeling thoroughly undignified, hurty, cold and miserable in my bra and tights. Sexy.
This one’s a bit of a cheat, just a sample sheet of some fun typography I’ve been doing at work, but as the finished product isn’t yet ready to show, I figured I’d share this. Some small sections of interesting Brighton facts...
So at Quaker church that Sunday, one lady stood up and spoke briefly about how she was grieving for a friend dying of cancer, and how much she was struggling with that. After the customary amount of further silence, another lady stood up, and spoke (far more eloquently than I can recall to express here) of how we must take comfort that the people we love/who are most important to us are in many ways never truly dead, because little facets of them will live on in us, from habits we’ve picked up, to things we believe, things we say, things we feel… I’ve been lucky enough so far not to lose many important people in my life, but it just got me to thinking about some of the people who’ve shaped me, and the ways they’ve done so.
It may sound like a somewhat saccharine sentiment, but it resonated with me in a way that many discussions of grief and death do not.
Got really excited because the (normally very butter heavy) patisserie right by my work were boasting about their new vegan sausage rolls, so I got one, but it was thoroughly disappointing. Later, George fell asleep on our sofa because Southern rail suck.
I looked at a picture of Donald Trump to draw this and ended up getting way too focused on the way his neck was squished into his shirt without really paying any attention to the rest of his face, also FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCKKKK
Some friends of ours have just moved down from North, right before we move away up to North, excellent timing all round, go team. (Couple of months overlap though, at least!)
Decided to try and have a really busy fun Saturday to distract from the ever intensifying sense of impending doom but it didn't really work (if only the cake had been better)
Had to spend around an hour doing a signage audit in a halls of residence with a fresh sewage leak in the basement and I don't think I've ever been anywhere that smelt that bad, I really thought I might do a little sick.
Today/this whole month I guess. My back's better but I feel like I've been on the very edge of a cold that's not quite happened which has left me not on the top of my game for weeks on end. I kind of want to just get really flued up for a couple of days and get it out of my system but apparently I'm made of stronger stuff than that, ho hum...
My ongoing mission to befriend musical genius/all round lovely person Daedelus/Alfred continues apace, and either we are actually now some kind of friends, or he's just too polite to tell me to leave him alone. I'm going to go with the former because I am an eternal optimist.
We had a nice stroll round Snoopers Paradise, which is one of my favourite places to go with new people... I feel like it offers a lot of insight into what floats peoples boats — very specifically in terms of random fleamarket junk, but also maybe from other perspectives too. We had dinner at Silo, which is reliably weird/inconsistently delicious/increasingly beyond my budget. I recommend it if you want to spend a lot of money on fermented things. They're really into that.
(Go see Daedelus live if you ever get the chance. He's unfailingly brilliant.)
A lesson that needs to be re-learnt every year.
I crammed LOADS OF STUFF into this Friday off work which felt like some kind of achievement given my aforementioned slightly fragile state…
I saw a friend for a short while in the morning, as well as getting some freelance work done, then after lunch I got a train up to London. I’ve been super excited to visit the Somerset House studios, given it’s now home to my good friends Strange Telemetry, Buckley Williams, and Lyall from Sensible Object as well as a whole host of other exciting makers/doers/thinkers.
Unfortunately my timing was medium-bad, because only Dan from Buckley Williams was there that Friday, but luckily Dan is an absolute hero. He showed me some cool work in progress stuff and gave me a tour… Gender neutral toilets! Boiling water tap! Ridiculous snooker room! Rifle range! Dark room full of chandeliers! What a treat.
After a quick Wagamama and a nice stroll by the Thames along to Vauxhall, I got the tube down to Brixton to see Daedelus (again), Samiyam and Luke Vibert. Banging line-up, really really ridiculously terrible promoter. Too much tedium to go into, but suffice to say, with a venue and time change (meant to be a 22.00 start, became a 19.00 start), the vibes were… weird? A lot of people who wanted a late night party making that late night party happen in the early evening, by whatever means, chemical or otherwise, possible.
I felt like the most sober person in the room but that’s fun in its own way. Like 4 strangers complimented my dress but I think that’s because it was very heavily patterned and they were all tripping.
Samiyam was great, Alfred was great, Luke Vibert was great, they’re all GREAT you guys. After the show, me and my friend Mel went out for burgers with Alfred, Sam (Samiyam) and a few others. Lovely lovely people, bangin’ sweet potato fries, general cosiness — I had so much fun that I ended up back in Victoria at around 00.30, waiting for the LAST TRAIN — over 9 years living in Brighton and this was my first time on the last train. Such hedonism.
Let me tell you — Victoria station at night is COLD. Teeth chatteringly, bone achingly cold. It was entirely worth it for the fun I'd had, but I definitely put down a lot of my ongoing not-quite lurgy to that hour sat waiting for the train in such freezing temperatures (it was delayed, ugh)
The last train is a heady combination of brutal sobriety, flailing drunkness, vomit, and endearing levels of camaraderie. I had genuinely interesting, heartwarming conversations with three strangers (initiated by them, not me), although it did end with me promising a lady I’d wake her at Haywards Heath, becoming distracted and failing to do so, and being WRACKED WITH GUILT when we finally rolled back into freezing cold Brighton at 3am leaving her with a 2 hour wait for the first train of the morning.
Then I slept.
But not for nearly long enough!
Saturday was time for the Rose Tinted Spectacular, my first ever zine fair! I wrote about it here, and I had such a great time, despite tiredness. People I don't know bought my zines! This is very exciting. Would you like to buy a zine? (Or a badge?) Pop me a message on Facebook or Twitter! (Or even a comment here will get to me, but you might want to leave an email address or something)
Luckily Sunday was sitting still time.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the USA recently. Haven’t we all. I’m so scared about the future, and horrified at so many of the things it’s becoming apparent that a very large proportion of the US population believe in and stand for. I haven’t been to the US since I was a child but I have a fascination and love for the country (or at least, the country I imagine it is based on my career making advertisements for it and all my readings about it on the internet), and I want so badly to go back when I can afford it. I also have a huge amount of love for all the American friends/acquaintances I’m lucky enough to have in my life. Spent a while drawing all of them that I’ve been lucky enough to spend time with in the last year (and Adam, who, when I drew this, I thought he’d been to stay within the last year, then realised that was like, 3 YEARS AGO, time, what even is it)
Alex and Anna's Queen party happened, and it happened hard.
The bad news is, my friend Sarah's dog Charlie has attacked the family cat, and been sufficiently weird around her new baby that she doesn't feel able to keep him any more. The good news is, I LOVE CHARLIE, and in late January next year, might actually be in a position to rehome him, which is just wonderful. If we can find a house where we can have pets up North, he's mine, and in the meantime, other wonderful friend Naomi is fostering him like an absolute hero. I so hope we can find the right house and be wonderful dog parents!
November has been fun and intense and stressful and life is rushing up fast now let's do DECEMBER!