Derren Brown at Southend (by )

Tuesaday saw numero-uno of my friend Clares Birthday celebrations and so we headed off to South end (of all places) to see Derren Brown. We saw him in London about two years ago when I was still on the crutches - I got hit by a monky that time so Clare got to go up on stage and win £50 off of him which was fantasmigorical as you can imagine.

This time none of us made it onto the stage but the show was fantastic! What with gorrilaz and a truelly spectacular Oricle show that had me wowing - he does he do it? Clare almost took out half the threater with her egerness to put a question in his pot! We really enjoyed the show 🙂

However the pre-show meal was a bit of a disastor, they just took too long to bring it out and got the order wronge and in one case brought out something that was inedible ie Lianes cake could smash plates! They are the resturant in the theatre so you'd have thought they would have been better but no we had to leave half our desserts and had no coffee (which was all part of the set meal) and we only just got in for the beginning of the show.

Also poor Al had to do a bit of a marathon to get to us for the meal which he should have been late for but becuase of how they where being we had bearly ordered! Still us girls had a nice wonder around the place and as me and Lianne are obessed with taking photos and neither of us had a camera Clares new camera was getting a good old try out. I'm hoping to see them soon so I can post them up on here 🙂

Tonight sees round two of the celebrations - Karyoky mucho mucho fun 🙂

The Castle – The Return of Sarah (by )

Yesturday I went to the Castle climbing centre I was cery nervous as I didn't know if I would even be able to get up onto the bouldering walls from the floor, nor how the pelvis would react to such an activity.

I haven't attempted climbing since the day after our wedding, sure we've taken the scouts climbing a few times but with Jean being there and time constraints etc... we have never managed to have a little climb at such events. I was excited and worried and then too my suprise my body sort of remebered things though I was still pretty dreadful!

First off I refused to try things until we found a stretch of relatively flattish wall with like no one else around using it. I pulled myself onto it and intially had the problem that I always want to go up but once I realised I was supposed to go along thats what I did. Being me though I got a bit confused as there where too many hand holds and foots holds so the first time I went along the wall I just used what ever was handy then Al showed me that the different colours where different hardnesses of route so I did the 4a holds which are basically the easiest and then had a little go at the black holds later on but had to give up with trying them as pelvis had gone click.

My pelvis actually with stood me falling off onto crash matts whilst trying to navagate a tricky corner - Al tended to fall off at this point too. This was in the bit behind the protrusions they've called envy and lust. I did alot of trying to climb round the pink one of those too, again just using any old hand holds! Al said lots of girls tend to climb on that one becuase it is pink - I thumped him. He on the other hand was obessed with getting around using the wooden hand and foot holds on Envy which are apparently 4a's aswell though he had to stretch to do them so I don't know how I could manage them.

I managed another horizontal stretch of boldering wall but alas I tried to do a specific route and basically stretched too wide with my legs resulting in pelvis click. It didn't hurt but I know from bitter experience that once it has clicked it is very easy to make to properlly mobile and therefore painfull once more so I did the thing I find the hardest to do and stopped.

We had a sandwitch in the cafe place and then went back - I was sort of optomistically hoping the pelvis would have settled down but it hadn't so I just helped Al for our second half showing him where the holds where and sorting out the slight issue of why he was getting so breathless whilst climbing - to wit - he was concentrating so hard he was holding his breath and trying to wizz around the bolder before oxygen deprivation got him!

The after math today is that I have slightly acted up the pelvis but my disc (which I acted up on Wednesday probably as I didn't do my normal amount of daily wallking as I had acted up my knee on Monday by us walking from Angel to Highgate) feels alot better and my shoulder has so far really behaved itself much to my joy :). This makes me really happy as I really miss doing all the climbing and stuff and it makes me feel more like me 🙂

Hyper = non-linear (by )

I have decided that html which conforms to those standard thingies is the equivolent to the plasmids or little circular bits of DNA that bacteria and microorangisms in general expell which can be taken up and incorporated into other organisms either of the some or different species, phylum and some times even kingdoms.

I'm getting a little confused with URLs here and feel that they should somehow fit into this analogy but that might involve re-reading the chapter I've just read again and I dont really want to do that - oh the folly of reading a book on HTML and CSS straight after finishing on on early life and the evolution of life. I think I might have been thinking about links as well and exactly how they are hyper - websites etc... are non-linear and organisms can share DNA across Kingdoms and even take it up from things that have died leading to non-linear evolution - erm.... my heads hurting now.

This post is complete waffle please ignore it.

My Favourite Film (by )

I saw a film a long time ago when I was in my early teens that had me tingling and longing to watch it again, I have always mantained that it was my favourite film but have been unable to track it down and no one has ever heard of it. I had begin to think that I had imagined its existance and yet it seemed quiet odd and seemed like it should be known. In researching wikipedia links for yesturdays posts I think I have found it!

I remebered it as being called Angel Eggs Apocolypse, what I remebered of it was that it was about a girl who has an egg that is really human dreams and that she was gaurding it and wasn't allowed to sleep, her older brother appears but she doesnt realise that thats what he is and he tries to guide her through her task. She has to learn to become an angel like him.

But he tells her a story about these sky whales that used to swim in the sky of a world but their song was so buetiful and lovely that they where hunted to extinction and then their world was sad. The girl falls asleep and then her brother smashes her egg.

She awakes and is disturbed by its distruction but the brother is the angel of second chances so she falls into our world, the world where she will be a propper angel and eggs appear as he is the angel of second chances.

Now this isnt exactly what wikipedia says on this, what I was doing was I was looking up surrealism after linking it to the Bruge post when I spotted Angel's Egg amoungst the writting. I have been hunting for reference to this film outside of my head for so long now that it just sort of jumped off the page. So I looked at it and its so similiar that maybe I just remembered it wronge - it was along time ago - it turns out to be symbolic of apocolypse and re-birth which is interesting but they say she dies at the end where I though she was falling into a new world - not sure why I should have thought that. But still it does mean I can now track it down and watch it again.

Elizabeths Hen Weekend in Bruge (by )

The adventure for me begain on Thursday night when due to the victoria line being shut me and Alaric where late to Euston to find Becca. Fortunatly Becca was also late becuase the Victoria line was closed but we did not realise this and thought we where leaving her lurking in the station around midnight!

My bag had gone missing two days previously and a cheque hadn't yet cleared in our bank in the morning so I thought I was going away with about £30 fortunatloy the cheque had cleared and Al extracted me some money. The other issue was that I had been supping drinks all everning and really needed the loo - we found a loo before the cash machine and as a result left getting back to highgate periously close.

But we made it and I had enough money to at least eat whilst away 🙂

Me a Becca got about 3 hours sleep before we had to be up and trekking to the tube station to get to St Pancreas. To our suprise it all went smoothly right up until we got to our seats on the Eurostar and there was a young Ammerican man sitting in one with his crutches proped agaisnt the other. The cry round the carrage was - they've double booked the whole carrage. Some people where decidedly huffy and used far more colourful language than this.

The poor guy in the seat started trying to explain he couldnt go and sort things out, we reassured him and then Becca headed off to find someone whilst I stood on the plateform once more with all our lugage. Then suddenly I was the only person on the plateform and it was getting a bit stressful as it basically was departure time.

In the end we ended up sitting between the carrages on little fold down chairs until they could find us some seats. Sigh.

But then things went mostly smoothly and we arrived in Brussels and I saw a double decker train and being me got uber excited!

Double Decker Train

Unfortunatly becuase I am me and have a humungous bad luck field I currently dont have a working camera and therefore only had my pooey phone camera - so apologies now for the rubbishness of the shots!

The first thing that struck us about Bruge was the fantastically intracate buildings - they are all gothic archetecture, some of the buildings date back to the middle ages and some where build in like the last two hundred years as part of the gothic revivial. They remind me of Cheltenham and the London Natural History Museum.

wonky building Pretty tower and bridge ginger bread house? Moon

Once we had settled in at the hotel we headed out to explore some of the sites in more detial which included climbing up the belfry. This had lots of steps 200 odd and they ranged from stone to metal to wood and where in places narrow, slippery and congested but it was an adventure finding little nooks and crannies to slip into as a group squeezed pass. Some places really where one at a time though!

the belfry

There where lots of rooms off the staircase contianing bits and peices of history about the place.

Clock bits


We where fortunate enough to be in the room with the clock workings at two o'clock - we where glade of this for two reasons - firstly the gears wearlling and doing their different things was a buetiful machanic dance and secondly if we had stopped at the next level we would have been next to the bells which would have been quiet deafening!

clock work

tick tock

From the top of the Belfry there was the most fantastic veiw spanning before us unfortunatly I couldnt really catch it.

city veiw

We then explored the Town Hall which had a highly decorated meeting chamber at the top with frescos around the walls and time lines, and arcetraves and an apparent calendar repressented by symbolism in the little rosette things around where the wooden arches reached the top of the wall. There where lots of little freaky faces hidden in carvings and stuff about.

We also made our way over to the Aldermans chamber which is where the people who make decissions about the city meet - again the room was very heavy on the symbolism and double meaning with carvings around the fire place of little cherub things and pictures of people being flayed alive etc...

We also went to see the relic of Christs blood that is supposed to lerk in a tabinacle and was brought back by a crusader after the second crusades. It is brought out for a procession on Assention day (the day that marks Christs ascent into heaven again after he rose from the dead). This was interesting as it was sitting there infront of one of the preists as they bring it out every friday afternoon so that the faithful can touch it.

The chapel itself was heavily decorated with everything raning from boldly and contrastly painted arcytrave boarders to steciled fler de lees (I have no idea how any of this is spelt I'm running on phonetics). The stain glass windows cast little rainbows all over the chairs, even the pull pit was somehting to behold as it looked like a giant fungus growing on the side of the room. There was also a little museum attatched the place which had some stonkingly large jewels in it. Again not really my taste but very ostentatious though there was a gold crown grafted onto a silver box which to me looked at bit odd - they hadn't polised the silver so it had gone that sort of dull yellowish colour in an effort to disguisse this. The box had a lamb on it whilst the crown was from a queen and was a series of leaves and was actually quiet pretty and the sort of thing I would consider wearing for certian events.

We then samples flemish food and drink which was erm... pretty much like my nans cooking to be honest - they even do beef in beer! (called flemish stew).

Exhorsted we went back to the hotel where I wrote up a couple of story ideas the place had inspired in me - one of which just sort of crystalised out from the setting and everything that I subsequently found out about the place just sort of fitted.

Bruge is also the home of the most buetiful lace, they sort of make pictures and patterns out of it which I have never seen before so the Saturday morning me and Becca headed down to the various little markets one of which was antiques and craft. There I got a lace bobbing which is actually a different shape to those my dad used to make though I think it is more of a stylistic than functional difference.

Becca collects pictures from places she's been, ones that have actually been painted by local artists. We found a very nice couple and spent far too long umming and ahing about which picture to get. In the end the others arrived at the hotel before she had made up her mind and she took the picture that had initially attracted her over to the stall!

We all met up and hunted out a pub to have lunch in.

pub lunch

We all then wandered about doing our own thing - I went off to the Groening Museum with one of the other girls mainly becuase I really really wanted to see the Hieronymus Bosch triptych though there where lots of other interesting pictures in there and I learnt quiet abit about art history in general as I had an audio guide and listerned to all the extras about the Flemish Primitives, and Renaissence artists and surrealism. I have to say I mostly interested in the older medieval pictures which went back to the 15th century.

It was interesting to see the evolution of the pictures as they learnt more about anatomy and used different perspectives. On one specific set of pictures I noted that the flowers and detials where fantatically and too detially rendured whilst the people looked a bit odd to me. This turns out to be becuase the artist werent allowed to draw real people as religous subjects and the same with places and there where certian restrictions on what people could be doing and look like.

Double meaning and symbolism seemed to permeat most of the pictures and then hidden in even the most apparently beniegn of pictures there were disfigured creatures or people or just eyes hoveringin the dark. The subject matter of most of the older pictures was really actually quiet grisly full stop. They seemed obsessed with how certian saints died and things.

The triplit was a suprise it was alot smaller that I had expected and then I erm... got told off for getting a) too close and b) taking to long to look at it and to be fair when I turned around there was a bit of a que of people waiting for me to finish looking at it - I didnt even really examine the two outer panels :/

I found the art gallery far to big to do in one go and we started to run out of time so alot of the later stuff had to be skipped unfortunatly.

I met back up with Becca and we went off to met the others for a Bewery tour! This was fantastic! As I'm into home brewing I found it really interesting though am a bit sad that I now can't remeber alot of what our guide said about the different grains and what flavours they produce. She was halarious, there where however a few stair cases that where so steep you have to go down them backwards there is therefore a plethora of photos taken by the first few of us down of every body elses back sides - not good!

Brewery vent

brewery copper heat sink

The Bewery was one of the places where I really missed having a camera as there was a lot of copper around and alot of old industrial stuff (unsurprisingly).

Saturday night we all went to a nice resturant where I found a cherry beer a liked 🙂 Though every body else reconed it was too sweet and they prefered all the other types!

We then went in search of the fabled bar with 400 different beers in it - we found what was possibly it and I consumed about a 1/4 of the best beer yet (bar my beloved honey beers) strawberry beer before we where off to sample Bruges nightlife. One of the others had to finish the drink off for me.

To my utter amazement there was a bar club and then to my bemusement a peirced youth tried flirting with me - only me being me I was just perplexed as to why he was acting so strange and not going away!

We rolled back to the hotel at about 5 am!

The next morning we did some last minute gift buying and to my delight I found diabetic chocolate that is sugar free though they seemed very reluctant to sell me it and kept informing me it wasnt for diet and only for diabetics - I pointed out that it was my diabetic perants!

We also went to the diamond museum which was cool:)

Other photos I just had to take!

minni waffle buscuit

funky red chair

I will attempt to find some better photographs from the other girls that went on the trip.

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