21 05 2009

I am writing this really just to see what comes out. For the last few days I have been suffering a head cold with the full works, buzzing ears, blocked nose, and when its not blocked, running all over the place, sore throat etcetera etcetera. This is probably the fault of the Malaria tablets (that I have now been told are the wrong ones) and have to start taking Malerone now, luckily not Meflaquin, which is Lariam based, and that has all of the horror stories about it including the psychotic breakdown side effect. I am barely able to keep it together as it is without all of that rubbish.

Still, less than 48 hours until my flight. To say that I am nervous is an understatement, but this I think is coming from the fact that I know taht I am so under prepared for this. Plus all of the hidden costs are coming out now, which had I been more prepared would have not been so hidden. Still, how many chances am I going to get to go on a Safari.

The down side to this is that I am leaving H for nearly 3 weeks, and with our burgening relationship going really well, this is most unfortunate timing. Especially as when I come back she is almost straight off again, firstly to the Isle of Wight Festival (the housemate is going too) and then to Barcelona with some of her friends. For some reason I am a bit lot jealous of them.  Recently I have been finding out what it is like to want to spend all of your time with one person who makes you so happy.  Its been a while so I am having to get used to it.  I just hope that neither of us have second thoughts while we are away.  I don’t see why we should, its all going far too well at the moment.

I have had time to get the last of my things now, and am feeling slightly happier about going.  I am relaxed in the knowledge that I have to be there on my own and will have to be exceptionally vigilant at all times.  After the pickpocketing incident in Barcelona (years back now with Mark) I have become a lot more street smart, and spotted what nearly happened to Neil in Madrid a mile off.  I should be ok, but I am still a bit nervous.  Having barely any sleep for the last few nights hasnt helped.   Hopefully I will find it easy to get some sleep on the plane to while away a few hours.  The films that are on really aren’t my sort of thing so I will be taking a few books and from seat 27A (window seat, just behind the wing and the toilets) I will make my way.

I checked in online this morning and picked my chair for the flight and now I have to sit back and wait. 

Now I am going to leave this and finish up my last bit of work.



20 05 2009

Hello readers,

Sorry its been a while, but I have been busy. I have been to another gig, the Twilight Sad at the joiners. They were very good. The first support was like the ambient noise you get in some of the art installations in the Tate Modern.

Apart from that dear reader, I have had my birthday and celebrated for a week. I had a big BBQ at my parents house and 21 people came, it was great. SOme of them stayed which wrote off my weekend really, but it was great fun.

Apart from that I have been spending time with H, as well as being ill from taking Malaria tablets before my trip. I am getting a bit nervous now, and in about 48 hours I will be boarding a BA 737 to Nairobi. I feel seriously underprepared.

I thought that I would update you, as this may be the last for a while.

Thanks for reading.

Yours sincerely

Your Fearless Leader.


14 05 2009

Last night is a bit of a blur really. It was my birthday, so straight from work, 5 of us from the office went for a drink. Then at 6 I left and went and had dinner with H. Then to the Joiners again (2nd time this week) to see Dananananaykroyd. We were joined by The Boy Lord, Indiegirl, Andy and The Jolly Green Dave Ware. The drinking began.

4 bands played, Waking Aida were Mogwai-ish, Japanese Voyeurs had some really excellent riffs and a hot front woman (I think a lot of men in the audience fell in love with her). The video Nasties were alright as were the headliners, but it all got to be a bit of a blur before they came on. It was a good night though.

Now I have a headache. I am supposed to be going out toinght, but I don’t think I am going to. I need some sleep.

Champions Again

13 05 2009

We won the Pub Quiz last night, which was a nice surprise after coming last in the last 5. We didn’t only win, we won by a fairly big margin of 5 points. I will say however that Andy G got all 20 of the picture round on Formula 1 drivers. We ended up getting 41 out of 60.

Did anyone know that Elvis Presley was a black belt in Karate? I didn’t but apparantly The Boy Lord did.

I knew that Stellenbosh was in South Africa and that St Patrick was once a Slave. I know some random stuff

Shame we aren’t going next week so that we can defend our well earned title.

Still, can’t win em all. This now means that we have won twice, which is great.

Sets Fire, Floats Boat.

12 05 2009

Myself and H went to the Joiners last night, and paid our £6 on the door. This is part of a pretty damn good line up for may, that includes Rollo Tomassi, My Vitriol (check back to the late 90’s for that one) The Boxer Rebellion, Dananananakroyd, The Twilight Sad (going to see the last 2) and Tommy Reilly, winner of the Orange Unsigned Act, who I really want to see, but I am in Zanzibar.

Anyway, 4 bands played, Penny Arcade were shoegazing but pretty good, the lead singer sounded like Robert Smith from the Cure. I See Sparks were up next and really were pretty good. They are more Pop rock than the other bands on the bill, but were probably my second favourite of the night. Gladrags came on third and this six piece took a while to grow on me, but they did, especially when they started with the trumpets.

Then came Sunny Day Sets Fire, a band that I for some reason had always thought had a female lead singer. Turns out that I am wrong though. He is definately a guy. A Swedish guy at that. Their synth knob twiddler and part time drummer is a woman though. A chinese woman at that. When she drums she is incredibly fluid in her over exaggerated movements, but a greart drummer none the less.

SDSF are a definate band that I want more of in my life, a lot more, they entertained and made my ears ring and that is all the entertainment that I need in evening. Will definat

Stress Over With

11 05 2009

Last week I was a little stressed, well I say a little, I was worried as hell at one point.  It was all to do with my Tanzanian Visa.

Me being me, I had left it to the last minute to post off my Visa and had forgotten that there was a bank holiday.  This left me to expect my visa on the Tuesday before I flew to Kenya (where I know I can get a visa at the airport).  This had caused me a whole lack of sleep, especially when the registered post didn’t actually get there until the Tuesday after bank holiday. 

So imagine my absolute delight when I got home on Friday to find out that my Passport with shiny new visa on page 7.  3 days it took to get that back to me.  I was convinced that I wouldn’t get it and convinced that I would have to change my trip because of my passport being in the post somewhere.   Even on that friday I was thinking that I should cancel this and take my chances at the border.

Note to self, sort yourself out sooner.  To be honest this holiday has kind of snuck up on me, infact this whole year has flown by.  Its my birthday this week, which means that May is half way through.  It feels like February in my head though.

Scary stuff.  I can tell you that the last 28 days has gone by in a flash.

Happy Birthday Dad

11 05 2009

Its my Dads birthday today, so I thought that I would start off with that.  So Happy Birthday.  Yesterday we went out for Tea and Cake at the 10th Hole as a bit of a gathering with the parents and my sister.  This also turned out to be a useful staging for them to meet H.  She isn’t so mysterious anymore, being a she and the fact that she was nervous meeting my parents.  In the old days you would have called her my girlfriend, but these days its not official until it says so on Facebook.  The thing with this is that you can’t change your status to anything other than being In A Relationship.  I think its a bit early days for that sort of thing, but there you go.  If they had a status of dating that would be better.


7 05 2009

I was talking to Andy on Tuesday at the pub quiz (just the 2 of us, we came last, but not by much and we got a good score) about things that we have done, and it turns out that I have done a lot and my looking back at it my life has been much cooler than I thought or seem to remember. 

I suppose I may have blocked the coolness out of my mind by spending so much time in a bad mood, but now I can look at these things in a slightly more objective way.

List of cool things in no particular order

  • Swam with Sharks
  • Ran with the Bulls in Pamplona
  • Climbed an Ancient Mayan Temple
  • Walked on Glaciers
  • Showered under a Waterfall
  • Tubed down rivers in Fiji and Belize
  • Eaten Conch straight from the sea
  • Experienced the Edinburgh Festival
  • Had a Horse Fondue
  • Taken a hot air baloon ride above the Nile
  • Drunk in a proper German brewhouse
  • Watched the sunrise on 4 continents
  • Been to a proper rainforest

As you can tell, I’m not one for package holidays.  I went on one when I was an adult and didn’t like it.  This list will probably keep getting bigger as I remember or think of ways to phrase things, but for now its a start.

Lied To.

6 05 2009

Im sure that you have all seen the massive phenomeon that was Jurassic Park, the film that came out in 1993 based on the book by Michael Crichton, which is actually quite dramatic, and made for a good study in my GCSE English coursework.

Anyway, now 16 years later, I have finally found out that we have been lied to.  On a major scale.  2 highly influential members of the media arts society have dragged the viewing and reading public up the garden path.   

Velociraptors, the big scary dinosaurs that hunted in packs, were actually the size of poodles, and had feathers.  The dig at the start of the film was supposed to have been based in Montana, while the smaller Velociraptor mongoliensis (as mentioned in the book) was actually from Mongolia.  The clue is in the name there I’m afraid.

Rant over and only 16 years too late.  Have a nice day.

Bank Holiday Weekend With The Mysterious H.

5 05 2009

It was a bank holiday this weekend which was great, and I got to spend it with the Mysterious H, who you may or may not find out more about. At the moment The Mysterious H is at the moment an abstract concept in your minds and will remain so for the forseeable future.

Anyway on Friday night I broke my duck of going to the cinema this year, and after a swift change of plan went to see The Boat That Rocked, the new Richard Curtis Film about 1970s Pirate Radio, and I have to say, it is brilliant, by far the best film I have seen in a while, mind you that may have something to do with the amazing soundtrack, or it could have something to do with the brilliance of Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Either way, this was a very funny film, and I enjoyed it enormously.

On Saturday myself ant the Mysterious H took a walk around one of the nicer parts of Southampton (There you go, another piece of information, H has legs), the Royal Victoria Country Park and had an ice cream in the sun while argueing about The Shawshank Redemption (my point of view overrated, everyone elses apparantly one of the best films ever made). Then to Sunday where I took H on a mystery tour of the Dorset coastline, taking in the picturesqe Lulworth cove and the staggering sight of Durdle Door, which is still one of my favourite places. All of this is now part of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage site, and as it was a bank holiday, completely rammed with people, didn’t stop us enjoying a lovely picnic on the beach in the (kind of) sun. Stopping for a well earned pint of Guiness on the way home we headed back a lot more tired than when we started.

Monday bought about an easy day just mooching about and heading to the most exciting thing to hit Southampton in a long time, Ikea. Just wandering around the shop is quite nice, especially when you can get Daim bar cake, which is amazing stuff. After this we settled down to watch and get annoyed at MTV2’s greatest albums since MTV began. I know that music is an incredibly subjective topic, but is What Ever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not by the Arctic Monkeys really better than White Lines by Massive Attack, Metallica by Metallica or the Bends. Especially in the last case, it really isn’t. Unsurprisingly this particular best of was topped by Nirvana, but what do you expect really, this is MTV (the judging panel included one of the Wombats for f**Ks sake). OK Computer was 2nd which was alright, although myself and judge Sean Keavney (6 Music) both don’t think that this is Radioheads best album.

So after my long weekend I had to say goodbye, and I know that the Mysterious H will turn up again soon.