Wednesday, May 31, 2006

I feel so ashamed...

Ever since the first ever Big Brother type programme, I have turned my nose up at the pointlessness of watching a group of people sitting around a house talking. (Go out and talk to people yourself! It's much more exciting, and there might be beer involved!) I have sighed and gone back to reading my book when my co-workers discuss it obsessively over lunches, and generally had no idea who was in what house or what the hell Jodi did with Daniel last night, nor did I give a damn.


A few days ago, I had a choice between Big Brother and the football, so Big Brother stayed on. I wasn't really watching it, I was randomly surfing the net, but it was on nonetheless. Then, at the gym yesterday, I watched the entire programme they at about 9 am because it was either that or watch the guy from Ready, Steady, Cook! in a hospital with some guy getting his chest cut open, and 9 am is really too early for that kind of shit. And tonight they were going to be nominating for evictions. So I watched it. And now I MUST KNOW. It's sad, depressing, and I think the left side of my brain is trying to beat the right side of my brain up for giving in, but this is what six years of university level education has come down to. The desire to find out if Richard or Leah is going to get kicked out of the Big Brother house.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Plants, plants, plants, and dirt

I've gotten an allotment! I was jumping around the flat yesterday after getting a message on my phone from the local allotment chairman about a plot that was vacent. The lovely gentleman, Cyril, came over and gave M and I a life about 5 minutes up the road to show us the allotment that was available - numbered 42, strangely enough!

So this morning, despite the pouring down rain and winds that blew the rain horizontally to the ground, I dug out the REI jacket I haven't worn in about 6 years, found a pair of gloves hidden in the attic, and headed up the road to rip weeds out of the ground.

In two and a half hours, I managed to get about 1/3 of the plot mostly weed free. I discovered a potato (much to my surprise), I now know which weeds I like (ones with very shallow roots that come out all together) and which ones I hate (bloody dandelions). I am a bit worried though, as we're essentially at the end of the planting season and I have weekend to get the plot clear, dug, and everything in the ground. But hey, nothing like weeding all next weekend to put a spring in my step, eh? ^_^

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Why am I not surprised?

Guess who might just be the worst President in American history?

I'm highly ashamed that I'm even vaugely related to people who thought that he should be in power in the first place.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Hyacinthoides non-scripta

I finally convinced M to leave his laptop behind and venture into that strange place called...The Outdoors. Really, he likes hiking as much as I do, but since we both seem to have even less time than usual off (owing to the ridiculous times we can get to and from work currently), we both seem to be having difficulty getting up the energy to really do much together recently. At any rate, we got a lift to Kingston Lacey Estate, and went for a really lovely walk in their bluebell wood. I'd seen pictures of what the bluebells look like when they're out in force, and the pictures really don't do them justice. They're beautiful. It's like this vibrant carpet of purplish-blue under all the spring growth of the trees, and pictures simply can't capture it.

It's a bit sad really, because apparently the native British bluebell is being surplanted by the Spanish bluebell (which is considered to be lacking in strength of colour and beauty) as the climate is warming and the poor British bluebells can't adapt quickly enough to the warmer temperatures. Here's a bit more of a close up:

We decided to walk to Wimborne, which is a small market town with a Minster (which means that it's not a cathedral, but it's more important than a church), so that we could meet M's dad and get a lift back to our flat. Along the way, we saw yet another example of how humanity has taken over almost every square inch of the British countryside except for the mountains in Scotland.

If you can't tell, the second small waterfall is coming off a wheelbarrow. It's a very rustic and picturesque wheelbarrow, but a wheelbarrow nonetheless. It was a really lovely day though, and it made me fantasticly depressed that I have to go back inside the prison of a building that I work in tomorrow. Oh well. Back to the grind.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Boghoppers and Bushbeaters...sounds dirty, doesn't it?

One of the better things about living out in the sticks than in the city is that, in Britain, every flyspeck of a village has an annual fayre, fete, or people-chasing-cheese-down-a-hill. Today was the 16th Annual Georgian Fayre in Blandford, so M and I wandered down to have a look. Having been told by both M and his dad that there were loads of people in Georgian costume, I was disappointed to find the town centre over run with those stupid portable carnival rides and screaming children. As a person who really, really, really doesn't like things like rollarcoasters and amusment park rides, I was really looking forward to the people in costumes! I think that maybe about three people were in costume, but then we saw these people.

They're Morris Dancers, a bizarre bit of British history that is pretty fantastic. The gentleman in the front is announcing a very painful way. He kept telling really bad jokes, and no one would laugh, in a west country accent so strong you almost couldn't understand what he was saying.
A group of middle-aged women happily jingles (they have bells on their shoes) their way to the middle of the open space, and the guys with the fiddle and accordian in the background just started pumping away. I don't know if I have ever seen anything as...I don't even have the words, as a group of grinning middle-aged women jumping around with bells on their shoes, sticks with bells on the end, hopping around in horribly clashing colours in front of the town hall.
The best thing about it though, is that these women were loving every second. They thought that their name was great (Boghoppers and Bushbeaters), they thought that the band was great, they thought that their costumes were great and they thought that the dancing was great. I must admit, I don't think that I'd want to dress up in bells and red and purple and hop around madly in the middle of a fair, but these guys loved it. So, rock on Morris Dancers.