Wednesday, 28 July 2010

WOMAD and some music recommendations

Well what can I was utterly utterly wonderful!! The weekend started on Thursday night with a Moroccan meal (thought since we were going to be spending the weekend listening to world music we should have something suitably appropriate!) which consisted of an orange, date and almond salad (sounds odd but was really yummy) followed by a lamb and olive tagine, hot chickpeas, mediterranean couscous and salad followed by stem ginger chocolates (I ran out of steam by the time we got to pudding). Chris was working from home on Friday (I think it was just so he could weasle out of putting up the tent...sometimes he really is not as daft as he looks!!) so he dropped Tom, Jo and I at the camp site. Oh dear!! An hour and a half later the tent was still flat as a pancake (honestly, I couldn't believe we had spent so much time fighting with the bloody thing and were still no nearer to having anything that looked even vaguely tent shaped!!) Tom had been hit in the knackers with a tent pole, Jo had been in tears from laughing so much and I had fallen and landed in sheep was safe to say that we lacked the necessary tent putting up skills!! After Tom had had a jump up and down hissy fit at the tent our lovely tent neighbours came to our rescue....Isabelle (age 11) came over and basically put our tent up for us. We spent an hour and a half and trying to put up a tent that an 11 year old put up in under 30 minutes (oh the shame!!)

Right, moving swifly on.....tent errected we then went a meander round the was amazing!! There were five main stages spread out across the site (and countless smaller ones in the beer tents!), a fairground, a wellbeing area (with a spa and everything!!), a children's activity bit and loads and loads of eateries and stalls (My favourite stall was called Prat in a Hat...and yes, we did see a fair few of those!!). The three day programme was absolutely packed and I loved the fact that you not only had the bands playing but there were dance and music workshops running as well as an area where the bands played more acoustic sets whilst introducing the audience to authentic dishes from their part of the was just phenominal!!

I'm not going to bore you with a blow by blow account (to be honest, I'm so knackered that I don't think I would be able to even if I wanted to!) but I will introduce you to some of my festival highlights!! (I'll do a few posts featuring the different bands otherwise I'm going to be here all day and your going to lose the will to live!!)

The first one has to be Nouvelle Vague!! Utterly brilliant....they take cherished punk and new wave songs and offer their own unique twist on them....think bossa nova and easy listening then apply that style to New Order's Blue Monday, Buzzcocks' Ever Fallen In Love and even The Dead Kennedys' Too Drunk To Fuck. It really shouldn't work but it sooooo does!! Here's one of their songs...what do you think?

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Sunshine Award (Come and get it!)

You Are My Sunshine
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away

This award is being passed to all of my followers and to those I follow. There are no rules and regulations so pass it on, keep it on a shelf (just remember to dust it every so often) or pop it in a drawer....I just wanted to let you know that each and every one of you bring a little sunshine into my life :-)

(Thank you Jennifer for passing this lovely award on to me and for those of you that have not yet visited her blog I suggest you's a rather lovely place!)

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

New Painting (For sale)

I know that a number of you have been following my (erm, rather slow) progress on Facebook and have been cheering me on from the sidelines so here is the finished article....

(It's been done using gold leaf and acrylic paint and you can click on the photographs to enlarge it)

Front View

Side View

Bottom View

(It's going into an exhibition tomorrow but I guess if anyone's interested in buying it before then I can put a sold sticker on it)

Friday, 16 July 2010

Me through the ages (Don't laugh!)

Ages ago I was tagged to do a post featuring photographs of me through the ages (Gawd, it was so long ago that I can't even remember who it was that tagged me!!). I've been feeling slightly guilty about not doing it so here it is....better late than never!!
OMG would you look at that hat!! What was my Mum thinking!!Now I'm wearing my Dad's hat...and I appear to be pretty pleased about it too!!
I was a strange child!!Ha, I look fairly normal in this one!
Me when I was a grumpy teenager! Would you look at the mug on that!!
I must have been about 16 in this photo....not sure why I'm attempting to strangle the cat!! He has that 'OMG get me out of here' look on his wee face. Poor wee soul!Erm, me in my late teens after a few glasses of wine! (I would love to say that I'm all sensible now and don't pull those kind of faces after a few drinks but unfortunately I still do!)It's a wonder I don't have super long arms...would you look at how many rings I'm wearing!! (I've no idea where most of the pictures of me in my 20's are so your going to have to put up with these poncy ones that I had done)Another poncy one when I was in my 20's. Actually I quite like this one...doesn't look anything like me...that's probably why I like it!!I was 30 when Chris and I got married. Awww, doesn't he look handsome in his kilt!

Ok, so it's not totally up-to-date since Chris and I have now been married for five years but when I find some recent (and decent) photos I'll post them (Ha, you may be waiting a while!!).

I'm not going to tag anyone but if you do a similar post please let me know so that I can pop over and laugh....erm, I mean come and see your baby photos :-)

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Mae Hong Song - Huay Gung School (an update)

Those of you that have been reading this blog for a while will probably remember the effect visiting Huay Gung School had on me when I visited the Thai region of Mae Hong Song in 2008 (You can read about it and see 'before' photos here). After the trip the BWG agreed, at my request, to support the school for an initial period of three years in order to get it up to an accepable standard and you may remember that one of my friends here, Anita, very generously donated a substantial sum of money to help with the building of a canteen that was so so despirately needed. Well, the canteen has been completed and it looks absolutley wonderful. I am really proud to have been a part of it

Here is what they had to say (and some photo's of the celebrations):

On Friday, June 11th, the opening of the canteen at Baan Huay Kung School was celebrated. The canteen was a self help project built by the villagers, teachers and students in the Karen hilltribe village of Baan Huay Kung. Funds for equipment were provided by Anita, a friend of former BWG Welfare member, Carol Burns and the British Women's Group.

The opening ceremony was a wonderful occasion with many of the villagers in attendance, although it was a working day for them. The Deputy Director from the Education Department in Mae Hong Son, performed the ribbon cutting and presentation. The students treated the audience to traditional dancing and songs.

The final result is a great credit to the headmistress, Khruu Or, and her team. Special mention should be made of the THEP team who supervised the construction, Khun Sunthorn and Khun Apichart. Construction took approximately 5 months which is an excellent effort, considering the villagers work in the fields most days and the teachers have to teach!

The canteen has a large kitchen and washing area. Although allowance was not made for tiling the floor, the extra money to do this was collected by the teachers. As yet, the canteen has no furniture; the chairs you see in the photo were borrowed from the District Office for the occasion.

The THEP team thank you sincerely on behalf of Khruu Or and the school for this wonderful project which means so much to the welfare of the students. Previously the children were eating, cooking and washing up in the outdoors and on verandahs and in classrooms when it rained. Thanks to you, they now have a beautiful multi purpose building which is basically their canteen but can also be used for meetings, shows and classes.

THEP (Thailand Hilltribe Education Projects)

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Friday, 2 July 2010

OMG OMG OMG.....have I got news for you!

I did it!! I've passed the first year of my Masters course!!


It hasn't sunk in yet!! I really struggled with the last semester.....the work load, the travel and, if I'm honest, I really wasn't sure I would pass. I thought that I might just scrape through (skin of teeth type stuff) but you know what.....not only did I pass but I got another two A's!!

I can't bloody believe it!!!

*goes off to do a happy dance*

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Burbling Pygmies

Did you know that there is an actual word (in the dictionary and everything) that is used to describe the noise your stomach makes when your hungry? Nope, neither did I...but there is and it's an onomatopoeia (a word that imitates or suggests the source of the sound that it describes) which in this case is Borborygmi. (If you say it out loud it does kind of sound like your stomach rumbling).

I thought it was a rather wonderful word, but it just refused to stick in my head so I ended up coming up with my own way of remembering it (The idea was that if I remembered my version it would help me come up with the actual word). So what is my version I hear you's Burbling Pygmies! I know I know....genius isn't it!! My problem now is that I can remember the Burbling Pygmies pops right into my head easy peasy....but can I rememeber the bloody word it's supposed to represent? Erm, that would be a big fat NO!

Does anyone else have this problem or is it just me? (Please tell me it's not just me!!)