Phoenix Fights

Fighting the FEAR, depression and BDP on a daily basis AND making my own bread. Bring it on 2016….


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STAY WITH ME/IN THE LOVELY HOUR

It’s been a gruelling couple of weeks, but I’m finally starting to see a bit light at the end of the tunnel.

It just had to get worse before it got better, natch.

In the form of cancelled jobs, a parking ticket, some fucker keying my car (AGAIN), and finally the resulting stress causing my neck and back to seize up and go into lock down, to the extent that I could barely move my head.

The group therapy too, has also been challenge and no doubt is all the better for it.  Nothing hammers home your negative coping behaviours more than seeing them reenacted before your very eyes by strangers in exactly the same position as you.

Urgghh.

So for three days I was locked in a cycle of misery, worry and pain.

Then last night, i made myself go to a carol service with a friend.  Mainly because I couldn’t let her down because she’d treated me to a ticket, but nonetheless I got out of the front door.

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It took place in a beautifully decorated park, with kids, lights, hot chocolate and all the things that make Christmas, and I have admit it was all rather enchanting.  It was also fecking freezing, so when it started to rain (curse you iPhone weather forecast – you SUCK), I got very twitchy cos there’s only one thing worse than being cold and that’s being wet AND cold.

But I didn’t want to let Jenny down.  So I pulled out my knackered old umbrella and stayed with her.

If nothing else it gave me something else to think about than my other aches and pains.  I shivered so much it actually made me feel more alive than I have for some time, in a strange way.   And when we ducked into the pub for mulled wine afterwards, I rediscovered that the biggest joy of going out in the cold is coming back into the warm.  When you stay in all the time like me, this is a bit of a revelation.  Sad, I know!

That said i was glad to get home to a warm flat, put my electric blanket on and go to bed as I was exhausted.

Then some time before dawn I woke up, entirely of my own volition.  And for the first time in MONTHS I was virtually pain free and alert.

Suddenly I heard a happy chirrup and something soft and warm bounced onto my bed.

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My Charlie cat.

Anyone who says that cats don’t love their humans, is totally talking out of their arse, or has never given them love and earned their trust.  Because there in the lonely hour my little Chaz, delighted his mummy was awake at such a God forsaken time, purred and butted and rubbed his little chops all over my hand (nothing says “I love you” more than cat spit) then snuggled up close, turned a few circles, and settled purring into the curve of my tummy, making it a the lovely hour for both of us, and this Sam Smith song immediately sprung to mind.  Well a more positive, feline oriented version at any rate:

‘Stay with me

Right now, you’re all I need

‘Cos this is love, it’s clear to me

Charlie, stay with me’

And I was profoundly grateful to him, and Jen, and to God for finally releasing me from my misery, and I have to say, I was totally happy and content.  If only for that hour.

Because then of course Dexter woke up, tried to nudge Charlie out the way, then they ended up chasing each other round the flat at breakneck speed, then both of them bounced and pounced and yowled at me when I had the audacity to try and get back to sleep.

Kids, hey?

I eventually got up, fed the gruesome twosome, had a bath and went to see my physiotherapist who clicked and cracked and manipulated my poor old bones again, and apart from being a bit fragile and bruised, I felt miles better.

Then the day went on like any other.

I found a great Secret Santa present.  Someone dick parked so close to my motor that I had to get in on the passenger side.  A nice looking man beamed at me in the street.  I forgot to buy milk.  I got dropped from another job.  Someone I haven’t seen for ages sent me a really rude, funny Christmas card.

Ups and downs.

There’ll be more as sure as the sun sets and the moon rises.

God give me the strength to stay with this mind set and deal with whatever the upcoming days bring.

Have a good weekend all x

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SELFIE, BELFIE, VANITY, INANITY

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I am a hair’s breadth away from de-friending one of my Facebook friends.

I say ‘friend’; I hardly know the girl, but I did like her when I first met her earlier this year.  Young, pretty, friendly, she seemed to know everyone and everyone seemed to get on with her.  We had a bit of banter too, so when she sent me a friend request, I had no hesitation in adding her.

Also, to avoid implying that I was misled by my initial impression, she seems as nice online as she was in person.  She has a squillion friends, posts lots of spiritual positivity memes, she can spell (yes I am a grammar pedant – sue me), never seems to have a bad word to say about anyone apart from the odd passive aggressive swipe (‘Haters gonna hate!’), but where it all falls down is her obsession with herself, in the form of daily, in some cases hourly selfies.

Just to be clear, I don’t mind a selfie in the way that I don’t mind a good old fashioned photograph. If you’re on holiday and want a photo of yourself in Times Square, at Sydney Opera House, or in the Blue Lagoon, that’s perfectly OK with me.  I’d love to see it.  Hell I might be jealous for a fleeting few seconds, but that would be more about your being somewhere cool and me being here, not how hot you look in your bikini.  You go girl!  I was young once, sigh….

And if you’ve just got engaged and want to share the happy moment, my day will peak with a little spike of happiness on your behalf.  I do not resent good things happening to other people.  I never have.

In fact any special occasion, why not share?  It’s one of the good things that social media delivers, especially if your family and/or loved ones are far away and need to see those snaps to still feel a part of your life.

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And of course if you have one like this, tag me, ‘cos I really want to see it. 🙂

As for celebrities, I’m not even going to go down that road.  Let’s face it, they get on everyone’s wick, and whilst I get sick of seeing Kim’s big oily bum, Kiera Knightly offering to get her tits out and Jennifer’s nude shots and depressing reason for doing them (‘He’s going to look at porn or look at you!’  Oh dear.  Shall you tell her or shall I?), I guess that’s what goes with the territory in Celebville nowadays, and I can avoid looking at them, if I try really, really hard.

But this gal seems to outdo even the mighty Kim K.  Because these are not just mobile phone shots.  There are camera shots, reversioned shots, recoloured shots, make up free/just woke up (a.k.a. washed my face, applied some concealor, lip gloss and got back into bed) shots, old photos, new photos, photos from the future….just kidding.

But if it were possible, believe me Maisie would take ’em, get back in the Tardis, come home and upload ’em. It’s just a perpetual onslaught of Me, Me, Me, Me, Me, Me, ME.

Maisy on the way to work, on the train, having breakfast, posing next to a film poster, posing with her friend at lunch, posing in costume, posing au naturale (see make up free/just woke up) partying, chilling, posing with her family, dog, in Starbucks, shopping in the supermarket, in sexy underwear, clubbing, dancing on a plinth, with the gas meter reader, getting a smear test, having a poo (OK I’m lying about the last two) and loads and loads of her posing and vogueing at home with her flatmates.

That’s right.  Her flatmates.  The people she lives with and sees every single day.

That’s like me grabbing my cats and taking a shot of me trying to hold onto them whilst boiling the kettle, them uploading it with the caption ‘Bitches be gagging for tea in da morning.  Word.’

Or one of you seizing your disgruntled, protesting partner when they arrive home from work, and taking a shot of the two of you staring blearily into the camera, caption ‘Me and my grumpy boo, waiting for the frozen lasagne to cook, better get the scotch out :-s’

Who does that?!  What is she trying to say?  That her life is so damn wonderful that every minute of it has to be recorded for posterity so that future generations can marvel at her fabulousness? If that’s how she truly feels about her time on earth, then I am actually envious.

Maybe that would explain my irritation every time I see her pretty little full lipped fizzog beaming up at me, every single time I check my Facebook feed.

For the love of Christ!’ I seethe inwardly, ‘Get the fuck over yourself!’

This perpetual narcissism gets to me more than I am comfortable with.  What is my problem with her exactly?  That she’s younger, prettier, and happier than me?  Well that accounts for most of the population, so unless I am kidding myself, I don’t think it’s that.

Maybe it’s my essential Britishness that makes her stick in my craw so much.  Unlike Americans, Aussies, and well probably the rest of the planet, we are taught to be modest and self effacing from birth, and if we do happen to have big tickets on ourselves, we’d better damn well hide it because the sheer audacity of liking oneself only makes others hate us.  It’s ridiculous I know, but deeply embedded into our collective psyche.

I also have actor ‘friend’ on there, an average looking guy who’s a ‘friend’ of a mutual ‘friend’ who added me, and in a moment of weakness I accepted him, even though I’d never met him in my life.  I then got an invitation to ‘Follow’ him. I am Fabulous

What?  WHAT?!  Who I am meant to be following exactly?

I clicked on his page, and on closer inspection, it turns out he isn’t an actor or even an extra.  He’s a wannabe extra/model.  But his self belief and confidence is such that he thinks I should fall at his feet and worship him.  I should have known from all the pouting.

Incidentally am I alone in finding men that pout deeply unattractive and laughable?  Surely no grown woman can take them seriously!  Haven’t they seen ‘Zoolander’?!

As I write this, I realise that I should be amused by him, and quite frankly could benefit from taking a leaf out of his book, but his audacity and presumptuousness made me so indignant I almost wrote to him to ask ‘Who do you think you are exactly?’

There are also a couple of people on here too that I’ve had to unfollow.  Not because I don’t like their writing; I’ve actually forgotten what and how they blog because every time they post, I get to see yet another image of them posing seductively, looking wistfully into the distance or gazing beneath their eyelashes Princess Di stylee, and I flick at my mouse with mounting irritation and whizz past them.

Especially if the post has a ‘I’m So Ugly/Unconfident/Alone’ heading.  Why?  Because (a) they are full of shit, (b) no matter how many ‘likes’, followers or ‘Oh you’re so beautiful!’s they get, it’s never enough to appease, and (c) even though they incessantly fish for positive affirmations, it’s clear that no matter how many they pull in it will ever, ever be enough.

Maybe, just maybe, they’re as unhappy as I am and I should feel empathy or even pity for them. But I seem to be unable to do so and think it’s only a matter of time before I block Maisie’s posts or even kick her to the kerb.

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In a way she reminds me of one of my cats. My Charlie has this really annoying habit of jumping up at me like a dog whenever I’m working on my iMac and digging his claws into my legs if I ignore him. When I finally break my flow, stop typing and turn to him, his beautiful little face is staring raptly into mine and I want to kill him.  Because I know that within a matter of seconds he’ll run off with his tail happily swishing in the air, only to come back in five minutes when I’m reabsorbed in my work and do it again. And again. And again.

‘FFS Charlie, WHAT?’ I’ll wail in exasperation.  I know he knows it annoys me. But he doesn’t care.  He’s safe in the knowledge that I’ll never do any more than tell him off and tickle the top of his head. Because I love him.

Maisie, I barely even know.

And beauty without substance is transient and loses impact as time goes on. Pretty wrapping paper on a gift box.  That incredible picture on your wall, painted by a local up and coming artist that you barely even notice anymore.  The pair of Tiffany earrings that you forget you bought.  That gorgeous old boyfriend/girlfriend that you thought was such a catch, who ended up being so needy and in your face that you used to hide whenever they came round.

Hasn’t everyone had one of those in their past?  That guy or girl that thinks they’re so beautiful that they don’t need to have or do anything else, who after the lust dies down, bores you shitless?

I was also guilty of using my body and OK’ish looks to secure attention when I was younger.  Nowadays I can barely be bothered to put make up on.  And whilst I still get the odd wolf whistle from building site workers (usually the oldies/half blind geezers about a mile away), my metamorphosis into one of the ‘invisible’ is nearly complete, and to my surprise, there is much comfort to be gained from this.

All that pressure. All that make up. All that trying.  All that botox.

Did it ever bring me happiness?  I think not.

I genuinely hope that Maisie, the wannabe actor and the blogging narcissist are happy in their skin, and whilst they’ll never know how much they irk me, I’m sorry for my judgement, anger and impatience toward them.  After all we’re all on the same journey.

Some of us just got the better road map and a head start.

Namaste x

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Daily prompt: Just Another Day – TROUBLE MAN (BPD BLUES)

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“Our days our organized around numerous small actions we repeat over and over. What’s your favorite daily ritual?”

Like many people that are unstable/out of work/downright idle, I don’t really have a routine, but from my darkest days when I only drag my butt out of bed to pee, to my extremely rare 24 hour highs, and everything in between, three things must happen:

  • I need to take care of my cats
  • I NEED tea.
  • I need to take my medication.

So rather than write some longwinded dirge about why this is the case and bore everyone on here who’s heard it all before, I decided to bastardise one of my favourite songs by the late, great Marvin Gaye.

Apologies in advance to his family and estate.

Sorry Marvin.  I love you…

TROUBLE MAN (BPD BLUES)

I come up hard baby, but things weren’t cool
But I survived sugar, playin’ by the rules
I come up hard baby, said I was fine
But I was troubled sugar, movin’ down the line
I come up hard but that’s okay
‘Cause trouble men, I sure made them pay
I come up hard, baby

I’ve been real ill, baby, but I keep movin’, even when I’m down
I fall apart, but I’m still around
There’s only three things that’s for sure
Catshit, meds and cuppas
This I know baby, this I know sugar
But ain’t gon let it sweat me babe

Got me singin’, yeah, yeah, ooh
Come up hard, baby, I had to fight
Tried to fit in with all my might
I come up hard, fall apart, drank too much gin
Then start all over next day again
I come up hard but that’s the way
‘Cause trouble man it is here to stay, hey, hey

I seen dark places and I’ve been some faces
Made no real connections, had no direction
What people say, it ain’t okay, it bothered me, so
Now I say “Just fuck ’em”, I’ll make my own luck man
Don’t care ’bout no haters, I say “I’ll see ya laters”
It’s time I just try to be my own ‘Me’ now

I come up hard, baby, time to be real, baby
Heal my troubled mind, keeping up the fight
I fall apart, and I get down
There’s only three things for sure
Catshit, meds and cuppas oh
This I know, baby, this I’ve known, baby
Hey gotta pick this shit up baby, ooh

All right, baby, ooh
Some days it’s hard, some days it’s cool
I can’t make it, baby, playin’ by the rules
I’ve come up hard, baby, now it’s tea time
I add milk and sugar, hey, and take my Sertraline, oh, oh, ooohhh…

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/just-another-day/

http://www.metrolyrics.com/trouble-man-lyrics-marvin-gaye.html

 

 


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RETURN OF THE MAT

Today, for the first time since my rather traumatic retreat in Italy, I went to attend a formal yoga class.

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I had decided to do this because my home practice was uninspired, ad hoc and always being interrupted by the postman, plus if I’m going to teach this for a living, I’d like to do lots of different styles before I decide what it is I want to teach rather than have it dictated to me.

I set out in good time (unusual for me) and got there early, which was just as well as the studio was packed.  

I then made myself very popular by holding up the queue by paying with plastic whilst everyone behind me was trying to appear patient and Zen like, when they were in fact bristling with suppressed frustration and impatience whilst the poor little pixie on the desk stared at the bank machine willing it to get a move on, whilst minutes ticked by, closer and closer to the start time, which I have to admit, did bring a wicked little smile to my face.

It was going to be yoga Jim, but not as I know it.  

It was going to be the kind of yoga class I used to go to.

The other tell tale sign was when I clapped eyes on the teacher.  

As soon as I saw him, one (rather uncharitable) word popped right into my head and stayed there for the duration of the lesson:

Shagger.

As in, the kind of teacher that ends up shagging his students.

A bit like my old ‘Guru’ probably, but younger and more attractive. 

But with a flaw.  

They usually have a minor flaw these guys, just one tiny thing that stops them from being model perfect (biggish nose, slightly receding chin, not very tall), so they hurl themselves into their practice, and work until their bodies are Greek god like, then, and only then do they feel that they are entitled to plunder their salivating, hero worshipping, downward dogging customer base.

And shaggers usually teach competitive yoga.  

Not deliberately you understand, but their classes nearly always attract gym nazis that wear tight ‘Sweaty Betty’ lycra, a stony ‘I’m better at this shit than you’ expression, and have a very determined air about them as they crowbar their poor bodies into the most excruciating contortions, usually before they are ready to do so.

So this was going to be quite a challenging class.

Bring it on.  I’ve spent so many months practising in a body-kind, gentle, responsible fashion, it will be kind of nice to tax myself a bit again.

Pretty soon some mystical cum ‘chill out’ music fills the air, and as the practice begins, I realised that I can’t understand a single thing my heavily accented teacher says, and certain tossers that insisted on breathing very loudly and theatrically didn’t exactly help.  

And as I was at the back of the class, I couldn’t see what he was doing either.

But you know something?

It didn’t matter.

Because I just followed the others and, if nothing else, in the last couple of years, I’ve learned to feel free enough in any yoga class to do my practice at my own pace, leave out the bits that don’t suit me and not participate in the inevitable ‘pissing contest’ when it comes to headstands, lotus’, back bends and other such difficult poses.

A few of the ‘show boaters’ did cast me a few puzzled glances on noticing me breaking from protocol, as if waiting for me to grab a yoga belt and start flagellating myself with it in shame and contrition. 

But the teacher said not a word, nor did he have to come over and correct me at all.

And I was one of the few people who wasn’t trembling with excessive effort as I transitioned from pose to pose.

But I enjoyed it.

It wasn’t perfect; old Shagger didn’t ask about injuries or tell us to go at our own pace, I couldn’t hear a bloody thing of course, and the person inches in front of me had the most minging feet. 

But I loved the thing I’d been missing most of all.

Practising, breathing and chanting with others.

Because I’m far from perfect either, and whatever style we practice, and however seriously we take it, and whatever reason we do it, we are all on the same journey, whether we know it or not.

And it was nice to share mine with someone other than two very mischievous, intrusive, bombastic cats and a horny postman.

So, as that other muscular, showboating shagger used to say, “I’ll be back”…..

Namaste x


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TRIKONASANA TALES 6 – I THINK IT’S ALL OVER….IT IS NOW….

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It’s the last day full day at the retreat today, and I feel a combination of sadness, relief and a deep, fundamental dissatisfaction, as whilst my yoga has improved and my passion for it reawakened, my fears of mixing with people I didn’t know for a week and not fitting in were well and truly founded, so I am not, as I hoped I’d be, reassured that I am ready to venture out into the big wide world as a fully socialised adult again.

It’s not the retreat owner’s fault though.  

I mean they didn’t advertising, ‘yoga, meditation, great food and a chance to make your nutty self more acceptable to a broader section of society’, did they?’

I’m ready to go home. 

But I’ll so miss this beautiful place, the yoga, my teacher, my sadistic masseur and the resident retreat cat who has stepped into the shoes, sorry, paws of my boys whilst I’ve been here and always comes by to yowl a greeting and get his daily cuddle.  I may keep in touch with one or two of the other guests, but long term it’s unlikely, and I feel myself detaching more and more from them, even my bathroom/toilet sharing neighbour.

Any chance of making friendships for live is now pretty much over.

That’s another thing I won’t miss; the food.  It is delicious and ‘healthy’ in it’s way but they serve way too much of it, and I feel a bit like a foie gras goose whose liver is about to explode.  My jeans are tourniquet tight, and I have a dimply, porridgy muffin top, so I’ll be back on animal flesh, wine and bread when I get home as I want my figure back, plus it will be great to stop pooing all the time!

Nor will I miss those creepy dreams of the ole Ginger Minger, have yet to figure out what that is all about.

The majority of us stay around the pool for the day, hoping to make the most of the sunshine before going home, but clouds are never far away and a sense of unease breaks out as we all give up the ghost and head off to our rooms to start our packing so that we just have to shove in today’s clothes before heading off to the airport in the morning.

The last big hurdle I have to tackle before heading back to Blighty is the looming threat of a bit of Ecstatic Dancing as a last night send off.  

There is no getting out of this one, as (a) I’d suggested it to the Manager (on arrival, when I thought I might make ‘friends’ to play with – ha!), (b) she’d gone out of her way to set it up, (c) it’s now being hailed as the highlight of the evening, so like it or not I was going to have to get my groove on tonight.

Before that though, was the Last Supper.

I’d told myself this morning that I’d only eat half of whatever was served tonight, so that I could give my poor old guts a break, but when it came to it, it looked so delicious, and it was our last proper meal, so I end up scoffing it all down and ended up with a nice big ‘post Christmas Dinner’ sized belly full of impacted mulch, so couldn’t wait for things to get started so I could swing my pants!

Not.  😦

And when the time came, I shamefully slope off to my room to ‘change my shoes’, but our teacher, sensing passive rebellion touched my arm gently and assured me that she’d wait for me before starting so the die was cast.

Whilst there was no one I was really close enough to enjoy bouncing around like a twat with, thankful we put in place a ‘no cameras’ rule, the room was pretty dark so I thought sod it, threw caution to the wind and went for it.

And it was fun!

Unlike that New Moon thingy I went to, the music was well chosen, great to dance to, and soon everyone was getting down with their bad selves.  Miss NFEFM (see yesterday’s post) was predictably the biggest show off of all, but it was so dark even she shelved behaving like a dick after 10 minutes or so, and I soon managed to lose myself in the music and even exchanged smiles with some of the others as we flitted passed each another on the dance floor.

Ironically, what enabled me to do this was my ‘fuck ‘em, I don’t care’ attitude, and for their part I don’t think they’d ever seen me so animated for the entire holiday.  Most of them were 5 rhythms virgins, and it was a pleasure to see them lose their initial inhibitions and really get into it.

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We prance around, whooped, swung, pirouetted and cheered, and finally the music went into stillness when we curled up on the floor, or stood swaying, chanting ‘Om Namah Shivaya’.

And as the chant penetrated my psyche the meaning rang true, that true consciousness dwells in us all; I am them, they are me and there is more that binds than separates us and I should see God within them and not fight it or judge them so much.

Or anyone for that matter.

As the music ended, we all got to our feet and a couple of them ran over to thank me for suggesting the activity and said how much they had enjoyed themselves.

I was elated that we had finally connected in some way.  

Perhaps some of us will become and remain friends beyond these walls?

‘I did feel a bit stupid at first’ one of the more prim, proper girls confessed, ‘but it’s the last day and no one was looking at me anyway!’

‘Exactly!’ I enthused, ‘And the best part of it is that it doesn’t matter anyway as you never have to see any of these people ever again!’

Stunned silence slipped into the atmosphere like an anchor into a cold, dark sea…..

Whoopsie.

Think I pretty much killed that moment…..

Their faces are a picture and I almost get the giggles, but you know what?

I might have been clumsy, tactless or whatever, but I had spoken my truth, and had not meant to deliberately hurt anyone.

So I brazened it out, laughed it off in their cold faces, bid goodbye to my wonderful yoga teacher and headed off to bed.

You think it’s all over?

Yup, me too….

Onwards and upwards.

Bags packed.

Sleep in, then only breakfast, then taxi to the airport and journey home to get through.

Bring it on.

Namaste x

 

 

 

 


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PSSTT! WANNA BUY A MUFFIN?

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So.

I had this dumb little dream, right?

The dream was/is that I could do a variety of things that I love for a living (instead of being/working for a wanker) and earn a living from them.  Even if I earn just enough to cover my bills, fund the odd night out, and keep my kitties tummies full (and perhaps even splash out on an annual camping holiday in the local park), then I could live happily ever after.

Here in the UK, we are still in the midst of a serious economic crisis, and whilst I understand the need for rules and regulations when setting up a food business, they don’t exactly encourage one with regard to giving it a go, especially when it comes to getting your premises approved.

People, I have to confess that, unlike other women my age, I don’t have a very big kitchen.   That’s because I don’t live in a big house. That’s because I don’t have a job.  Or a partner.   Or a sex life.   Or a….

Sorry, I digress a little 🙂

Back to the subject at hand….

My kitchen is pretty small, but in all fairness, that’s never gotten in the way of me producing a mean batch of sausage rolls*.  Or banana bread.  Or muffins.  Etcetera, etcetera.

(*yes I make my own flaky pastry.  No, NOT the frozen variety)

Nor have I ever poisoned anyone. Or even given them a minor dose of the shits.

This I know, because anyone who has ever eaten my fare, always waxes lyric about it afterwards and implies, directly or indirectly, that they wouldn’t mind some more.

So I am not, repeat, not dangerous.

But my local council and/or the FSA (Food Standards Agency) might beg to differ.

Whilst it is said that requirements differ a little from area to area in London, some of things I will supposedly have to do in order to bring my kitchen up to par, so that I can sell a bit of baking to my neighbours are as follows:

 

‘Store all business food/ingredients separately from household food/ingredients’

Not. Going. To. Happen.

For a start I don’t have the cupboard space!

Secondly, what happens if I don’t get any orders for a long spell and I run out of my own flour?  Am I meant to run off to the supermarket and buy more, when there’s a kilo of the  frigging stuff festering away in my imaginary additional cupboards?  Ridiculous.

 

‘Keep all the refrigerated, business related foods in a separate fridge’

Oh sure.  Perhaps a complimentary, matching Smeg chest freezer too?  Not a problem.  I’ll just pop out and buy them, then put them on the mezzanine level in the room in between the heated pool and the gym, opposite the in-house cinema.  Wankers.

 

‘Have adequate ‘waste disposal’’

That had better mean a bin….

 

‘Have good ventilation’

Will a window and extractor fan do?  If not WHY NOT FUCKING SAY SO?!

 

‘If there are any windows, they may need to be fitted with fly screens to ensure that food is not contaminated’

Dear Lord. 

I am not a fan of flies (who is?) and kill them on sight, but let’s face it, they have been around since the dawn of time and will probably be around long after the human race is dead and gone. Plus, unless they want to screen ALL my windows (in which case they can fuck right off) my kitchen window is so small that adding a fly screen would probably lead to us all asphyxiating to death.  Anyway,  the pollution from the London traffic usually kills them off before they get to my floor, plus any unfortunate insect that has been stupid enough to enter these premises gets hunted down, killed and eaten by my boys. 

Which leads me very neatly onto…..

 

‘If you have pets they cannot be allowed in the kitchen’

Oh boy….

Anyone who owns a cat knows that you could live in Buckingham Palace, but  just try and keep them out of the smallest room in there? 

That’s the very room they must inhabit and no other, and they will do anything in their power to breach it.  It’s their nature you see…..

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Plus I’m sorry but my place is tiny already so it’s not fair on them, and I tend to cook when they sleep (i.e. during the day after their breakfast), so whilst I’m more than willing to sluice the place down ceiling to floor with bleach, don a white forensic bodysuit and scan the floor for stray hairs with a magnifying glass and a pair of eyebrow tweezers before cooking, I cannot and will not banish them 24/7.  What if I only get one order a week?  Ludicrous. 

Plus (sorry kid owners!) my cats have never made me sick, whereas I have occaisionally come home with raging food poisioning after staying with families avec children, mainly because some of them neglect to wash their hands after going to the loo. 

In fact, I once witnessed one little darling (who left the loo door open for our delectation) wipe himself until he got bored, then pull his pants up over his grubby bum, and smear his shitty  hands on the wall.  The parents did not bat an eyelid*.  

(* note, might I add, not all of my friends are this exhausted/neglectful/inattentive)

Arrggh!  Had my cats been there they would have given him their best disdainful glare and stalked off to wash themselves, so, enough said….

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Rachel Koo from ‘The Little Paris Kitchen’ runs a mini restaurant from her tiny flat, and I bet she doesn’t have the French ‘Gateaux Gendarmerie’ sniffing around her skirts in search for bacteria.  Or if they did, they’d just be looking to smear it on a bit of pain et du beurre, and dip it in their moules mariniere.

That’s what I love about the French.  They don’t let a bit of salmonella put them off a nice, ripe, unpasteurised brie or a portion of steak tartare.  Yummy!

The other obstacle that I thought you had to is already have a company registered in order to get your kitchen tested, but it’s all a bit ambiguous so I’m hoping I can just give them a name, pay for and do my food hygiene course and hope for the best that it won’t be a total waste of money.

I’m starting to think that it would be a whole lot easier (and much more profitable) for me to sell drugs with the dodgy geezers outside the tube than try to sell my baked goods from home.

Maybe I could deal in hash cakes, thus satisfying two very viable markets?  Plus the ‘munchies’ would pretty much guarantee immediate repeat business!

Hurray, I’m gonna be rich!  🙂

I wish….

In the meantime, all that I can hope is that my little domicile will be proved worthy and that my cats stay under the bed for the duration of the inspection.

Wish me luck….


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JUST WAITING FOR THE HAMMER TO FALL

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Another one of those fucking nightmares.

They always look different, sometimes with the real people there, sometimes not, but the theme is always the same.

Why do they always happen after a good day?

 

I’m back at my old office, but it doesn’t look like my old office.  

They look different, but I know it’s them.  And they know me.

And they watch.

Everyone is whispering.  IM’s fly across our small cyber space.  The faux sympathy.  Sly eyes that watch, oh how they watch, but they don’t, won’t meet mine.

I keep my head down, avoid all contact, and work.

And wait.

Wait for the hammer to fall.

 

My heavily drugged mind is still hyper with anxiety.

Have I done everything?

Did I meet everyone I was supposed to meet?

Have I tried everything I could to get that deal?

Have I answered every email today?

Have I approached every client?

Waiting for the hammer to fall.

 

He’s at the other end of the office.

I can feel his eyes staring through the glass wall.

I feel you, you worm.  I see you, don’t think for one moment that I don’t.

Can I fight the accusations?

Do I have an answer for this?

Do I have a counter for that?

Can I prove this?

Prove he did do that?

I KNOW he’ll never admit it.

THEY know he did it, but they’ll never admit it.

So we’re all just counting out time. 

Waiting for the hammer to fall.

 

I know it’s going to happen.

They accuse, they threaten, they allude, they condemn.

They collude, they join forces, they circle.

I may be mad, but I’m not stupid.

Why don’t they move?

Make your move cowards.

Make.  Your.  Move.

Waiting….

 

I go into meetings.

No one will tell me much.

I go to trade shows and walk the carpeted halls as if in a dream.  

I meet with clients I’ve known for years, and even they look at me with different eyes.

Embarrassment.  Pity. 

Kindly but in their passivity and concern, condemning me too.

Poor thing.  Having a breakdown they say.  Can’t cope with the stress.

You bastards.  You fucking slanderous bastards.  How dare you?

The looks.

The whispers.

The looks.

The waiting.

Bring it, you bastards.  I’m not afraid of you anymore.

Scabby, skulking fucking hyenas.

C’mon!

Bring.  It.

Because the suspense is literally killing me.

But I hold on.

I will not break.

I don’t want to stay, but I want them to admit it.

I don’t want to stay, but I want the sheep to see it.

I don’t want to stay, but they will not see me crumble.

They won’t.  

Please God help me to hold on.

 

You hurt, you threaten, you cite, you counter, you accuse but I see what’s in your eyes.

The stress, the fear and yes, the shame.

The shame, palpable under the corporate bluster and bullshit.

You think a swanky job title means you’ve achieved greatness?

You think that designer suit makes you a big man?

You think you can use my depression to beat me with, in defence of a guilty man ‘for the good of the company’?

Because money is more important than honour?  Integrity?  Ethics?

I may be at the end of my rope, but I’m glad I’m not you.

Hyenas.

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Be afraid you fuckers.  Be very afraid.

Because you know just what you do.

And to whom you do it to.

Cowards.

Hyenas.

Liars.

Bullies.

The looks, the whispers, the sly smiles, the faux platitudes just keep on coming.

And as the day goes on, the atmosphere swells and stretches like the skin of an over inflated balloon that’s about to explode.

Because it is.

Bring it.

Do it.

Because I don’t know if I can hold on anymore.

But don’t expect to be on your feet when this fucker blows.

Because you’re coming with me.  

Every last one of you.

 

I wake in a sweat and find one of my little cat soldiers, Charlie gazing at me in that concerned way of his.  He then proceeds to wipe his chops all over me, marking me as his own.

Probably just to spite Dexter cat. 🙂

What is this shit about? Is it because I can’t cope with people actually liking me?  Is it my fear of working again?  Or is it simply down to drinking too much on top of my meds?

Hungover as I am, I’m off to bootcamp.

Need to sweat some of this shit out….