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Busy weeks, bad weather, no results - The Lyorn's Den

Wed Mar. 27th, 2013

10:25 am - Busy weeks, bad weather, no results

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I promised some journal-y things, mostly to myself, because I dread looking back at the year in December and think, "2013, did that year even happen? What did I do?"

So, here they are.


Music

March 8th is International Women's Day, and, singing in a women's choir, that is a busy time. This year more than most, as we had three gigs in eight days. (Election time is coming up.)

Sunday March 3rd we were with some very nice folks in some village that, to me, was "middle of nowhere". Nice, cold day, nice people, nice food, bad sound, as the hall was not designed for "unplugged" music. They kept their schedule mostly, fed and watered us for free, and we were home at 2 pm. All fine with me.

Wednesday was practise again, three hours.

Friday we had a performance downtown, at some lots-of-talking-and-a-discussion event. That was no fun at all. Work had been very annoying for a lot of reasons, I had still managed to leave early enough to get dinner before the gig, but then damaged a tooth on some sandy salad. It hurt, it worried me, work had been bad, dinner worse, and my mood was indescribable. It did not help any that the stage was tiny, the room was crowded, and we utterly failed to catch the audience with our intro song. (What did help my mood was that we managed to lock ourselves in the back room, and I had to climb out of the window to open the door from the outside.)

After the intro song, it was waiting for the first set. I was not up to the crowding in the main room and not interested in hearing the intro speech, so I stayed in the back room, reading. 30 Minutes until we got on stage again. First set went better. Then an interminable discussion, and then food (a combination of shyness, crowding, and sore teeth kept me from getting any), time was ticking by, we had been hired from 7 p.m. to half past nine, but when we got on stage for second and final set, it was going on 10 p.m.

Second set, however, went great. We got praises and roses. Got out, finally, and agreed to go for a well-deserved drink. However, after Ceridwen and I had unlocked our bicycles, everyone else was gone. We went into the general direction where they had said they would be going (turned out later, they didn't), went into the second pub we found, and liked it enough to stay until one.

Saturday was ensemble practise, which was OK. I went to the dentist before and found that the university dental clinic did not provide emergency services anymore. Instead, they pointed my to some young doctor in the suburbs. However, she was nice, competent, and quick, and said that the tooth was fine and only needed minor polishing, which she did, and I was done within minutes.

Sunday was the last of our three performances, in a historical building with very hard solid-stone acoustics. We actually had to sing slower than usual to avoid the sound becoming one big ball of noise. And there were more speeches. But the sun was shining, the temperature ambitiously climbed to the high single-digits, the audience was friendly and everything went really well.

After all that, we got the following Wednesday off from practise. But I would have been away anyway...


Vacation: Week One

I had not gone home for Christmas last year, instead planned on visiting in March, when the weather would be better. Well, I did, and it wasn't. In fact, it was snowing all the time, with a bitter cold Eastern wind and snow drifts on the main roads.

I went by train because I had managed to get a cheap first class direct ticket. Sunday March 10th, was actually a nice day, not freezing, no biting wind, and even some sun. Travel, however, started with the train being 80 minutes late. At least my first-class ticket allowed me to read magazines and drink free coffee in the first-class waiting room. Which I did. It was dark but still above freezing when the train left, and I had kind of hopes for spring, but when I caught a glimpse of the outside after 2 hours of travel, there was a snow storm.

My mother was not feeling too well, so my stepfather picked me up at the train station. We took the major road home, because of the snow, and still had some trouble with snow drifts.

Weather stayed as it was, so we spent four of the five days sitting near the oven, watching the snow fall and the birds crowd the feeding place, and doing precisely nothing. One day, my stepfather and I went to Hamburg to look at some stuff I might want for the flat: A mosaic balcony table, a glass cabinet, and some very, very shiny but very, very expensive china. I ordered the table, decided to save for the cabinet, and not to buy the china.

We did not fight at all, and I took the train back home on Friday.


Vacation: Week Two

I had made a list as long as my arm of stuff to do on my second week of vacation, but looking back I did not make headway into it. Worst thing, I did not write the letter to the building company telling them to fix the power sockets and provide the missing support for the shower glass plate ASAP. I also did not tidy up the cellar or the junk room, and did nothing to get rid of the massive old filing cabinet in my living room.

I did, however, get my hair cut. I also went to the dermatologist for the regular check-up. I had expected wait time, so I brought a book. I did not expect that the doctor would forget me waiting for her, and I was so busy reading that I did not notice that time passed or that I was freezing. After 50 minutes she came in and was quite shocked and apologetic (I got free stuff) and I was so cold I could hardly put the book away. Bicycling home in the cold was beyond me, so I only went as far as the gym and spent half an hour in their infrared sauna until even my hands were not cold anymore. Attempting a workout after that proved futile, my blood pressure refused to go anywhere. But I was warm all rest of the day!

I also picked up the new curtains, including a 3.20 metre curtain rail which did not quite fit in the car (10 cm too long), but still got everything home fine. Didn't put anything up yet, though.

Ceridwen was moving that week, and her new flat is in the same house as mine. I could not face dust and boxes, stuff and decisions (I had enough of that to last me years!) so I had offered to feed everyone who helped with the move over the weekend. Which was fine, I had fun cooking, but it also kept me busy. And it was too cold to go into town, or bicycle into the city for some spring shopping, and going for groceries brought tears of cold to my eyes, and a cutting eastern wind under an uniformly grey sky made even window-shopping or going for coffee unattractive.

Years ago, I would have enjoyed the feel of the cold air on my skin, and loved the smell of the wind. I really miss being able to to that.

Friday evening I went for dinner with two ex-colleagues. We went to a Chinese all-you-can-eat place. It looked like a company canteen, but the food was good enough, plentiful and varied. For the Mongolian BBQ, there were ten kinds of fish/seafood and eight kinds of meat, and some of my favourite veggies. Service was quick and friendly and they didn't seem to mind us occupying the table for more than two hours. All in all, not bad.


Back to work

If there had been anything at all I had been looking forward to about going back to work, it was the bicycle commute. Yes I know, before long it will be a bother and a bore, eating into my time and make me binge on cookies, but for the moment I really wanted out in the fresh air.

Monday morning it was -5°C. Snowing icy little flakes. Snow drifts. Tuesday, same temperature, but gusts of strong wind making for a perceived temperature of -10°C. Wednesday, it was -4°C, and overcast again. In short, I did not bicycle to work. (I did mention already, I hate being such a wuss.) And, looking at the weather forecast, tomorrow I probably won't, either.

At least my balcony table arrived. So I am at least prepared should suddenly spring break out and I feel like sitting outside! (Hope springs eternal...)


And that's pretty much it, for now.

This entry was originally posted at http://lyorn.dreamwidth.org/22439.html. Please comment whereever suits you.

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