7 Quick Takes #24 x FTSF

— 1 —
Finish the Sentence Friday

This week:
A typical day in my life looks like…

I’m kind-of pleased to announce there’s no such thing. I have a weekly repeating pattern (term-time only, being a student-y type) but each day is different and the variety is wonderful. I’m able to see Husby, do some studying, do some relaxing and help with family as well as get a tiny, tiny bit of earning in.


…the grass is beginning to be greener on the other side and I’m starting to crave a routine. I’m beginning to crave work, a job, anything, to get up in the morning, go and do my thing then come home and leave it all behind. Not least because being a student (with a Husby signed off sick and at the mercies of the UK benefits system, who seem to think that £18 per week after bills is sufficient for anyone) leaves very little money to go round, to the point that were it not for the generous support of assorted family and friends, we’d’ve been homeless several times over by now.

The things which tend to be constant in my days are things like

Breakfast in bed with Husby, reading whichever book is on the go at the time.

Bickering of some variety.


Facebooking (by the way, I hear that Facebook’s going out of fashion with the hip, trendy crowd, and instagram is now the place to be…!)

A proportion of time on my beloved Youtube, often simultaneously with either of the above two activities.

Bed later than is good for me.

The rest is a lottery and may include such jewels as lectures, practical work to do with the course (as diverse as maintaining tropical fish tanks to dissections to bricklaying), childcare (for lovely Niece and Neff), cleaning (for my client, who tells me about his life and how to restore furniture and is a lovely chap), writing assignments, housework or playing blackjack with my student-y friends as we waste time between lectures and complain about how much time is wasted between lectures.

— 2 —

We’re enjoying the company of Husby’s younger brother and his girlfriend for the weekend. They are mad, funny, sweet people, both of whom I care dearly for. It’s fascinating how much broader Husby’s accent becomes when he’s with his Bro – he becomes quite culchie [Irish derisive colloquialism for someone from the country, or, as they’d put it, “from the back arsehole o’ nowhere”] and I sway between maintaining a hyper-English accent and adopting some of their lilt to fit in. That’s what you get for marrying a foreigner.

— 3 —

Soggy nails trapped me in the bath earlier.

We have a new bath (in our new house – no I’m not over the novelty yet) and one of its features is a non-operational whirly-handle-thing, which is meant to raise and lower the plug when you turn it. Very swish, when it works; sadly this one never has. So the plug is removed manually by the insertion of fingernails under the rim and a steady pull to break the seal and beat the water pressure.

Husby bought me a lovely Lush bath bomb and I’ve been looking forward to using it. Tonight I got my chance. I filled the tub, got in, dunked in Big Blue and prepared to follow the instructions;

Peer over the side of the boat into the big blue
Watch the seaweed float by and feel the salt on your skin
Who needs a holiday when a bath can be this relaxing and refreshing?!
Need a holiday but don’t have the time? A soak in this is the next best thing. Lavender oil to relax, lemon oil to clear the mind and seaweed and sea salt to soften the skin – set yourself adrift for hours.

Sadly, after a chapter of the book, my eyes began to close and it had to be chucked over the edge of the bath onto the floor. The warmth of the bath was like a snuggly, floaty blanket and I allowed myself the luxury of drifting into a sleepy haze, feeling the change in temperature as the water lapped up and down with each breath and a portion of skin was exposed to the cool air before being re-immersed in warm, delicious water.

Then I started to think. Bad move.

By the time I thunk about 1.What if the doorbell rang, 2. What if I fall asleep and 3. What if the doorbell rang, the water started to go a little cool and I felt the need for a warm shower to rinse off.

I sat up. I reached for the plughole.

My nails, which had been soaking in the bath, had attained the consistency of warm plastic. I sat in a state of anxious consternation, trying different fingers, different combinations of nails and cursing the fact that i – Husby was possibly right about needing to alter the plug somehow to make it usable and ii – I might be stuck in the bath, unable to get the water out and too cold to go and get a tool to unplug it.

Eventually, in desperation (and having tried bending each of my nails in turn to see which was strongest) I jammed my thumbnail deep between the plug and the side of the plughole and slowly, slowly lifted the plug a crack. Then immediately dropped it.

The second time worked far better and I managed to be better prepared to catch the plug before the draining water slammed it back into place.

Time for a new plug, methinks.

— 4 —

Alongside my upcoming new job (okay, not *that* upcoming – I’ve a few months to the end of the course, then still have to find a vacancy and apply for it. I daresay I’ll need to repeat the process ad nauseum before finding a position) I am beginning to think about what I’d like to learn next.

When I left college (the first time) I learned that I was happy to take a vocational route into work and get paid to train. Over the next 9 years I learned that I love looking after children and dislike managing adults. I got married and learned that Marriage Is Hard. I went back to college and learned lots of fascinating things about ornamental fish (alongside a few doozies like how not to build walls). I’m learning I want a job, but more than just a job on its own.

What next.

Long-held ambitions

  • Learn to speak another language fluently
  • Learn to drive and maintain a traction engine
  • Learn to drive a steam train
  • Grow some of my own vegetables

We’ve got a portion of my Mum’s allotment to be getting on with, so the vegetables one should be accomplishable. Not sure about the others. I’d like to try another language…maybe Polish. It’d probably be the most useful where I live, and when I’ve heard it spoken, it sounds beautiful.

— 5 —

I read something which made me (mentally) stop and think very hard for a sec. I was perusing another blog (as I am wont to do) and the author was describing a conversation with her husband about whether or not he thought in words, as she did and assumed he would too.

Thought in words?

It wasn’t something I’d ever thought about before, and it was like a firework going off behind my eyes. Like the shiniest new toy, to be observed from every angle before finally, tentatively, being touched, held close and taken ownership of.

If I think hard while I’m thinking, I see the words of my thoughts (interestingly, in Times New Roman) as they scroll past, but I’ve also known myself to think in pictures and in something else which I can’t quite describe – it’s the thing which happens when I’m immersed in a good book and the words I read stop being tangibly ‘words’ and the meanings seem to flow seamlessly from the page into my brain and make sense. Quite often books are like movies unfolding in my mind as the descriptions rush in to build images.

Not all books, though, as I often read fact/opinion books to learn from (notably, Lewis Thomas, whose books I adore) but currently David Bellos’ ‘Is that a fish in your ear?’ – a book about translation. I don’t remember getting pictures as such from it, yet maybe I did, imagining the scenarios as each aspect was unfolded in text.

If only I had the self-awareness to think about how I was thinking something as I was thinking it. I *think* I think mostly in moving pictures and emotion-filled images. How do you think? Have you ever thought about it? How do you feel when an entirely new thought enters your head?

— 6 —

Madhur Jaffrey (famous cook, author and other-things-too) once described that she can imagine flavours and understand if they’d work well together. I love that I can do that too, and one of the great things in life is trying new flavours to add into the database. I also often associate colours with flavours in a weird taste/vision synaesthesia (astringent flavours tend to be reds, earthier flavours tend to be browns, greens are, well, green and I think carbohydrates tend to be yellow), which makes cooking great fun and very colourful.

I sometimes get pictures for flavours, too. I have particularly strong images for things like Christmas pudding (as a child, at the dining table in a silly hat, with the table laden with crackers), chamomile tea (a fresh-mown field on a hillside with deep azure sky above and the mid-afternoon sun blazing down), and jasmine pearl tea (the first step taken inside a giant, victorian hot-house where there are a million warm, damp plants, a riot of flowers, and the noise of water trickling into a pond, somewhere out of sight).

I love being in my brain.

— 7 —
 Week on week, I get to this dad-blasted seventh take and luck out. Currently my brain is set to ‘Out to lunch’. Need to think of something to fill it (the take, not my brain, which is currently enjoying the vocal wonder that is the Andrews Sisters (thanks Youtube)). Suggestions on a postcard and I’ll give it a go next week.
For more (and complete) Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

14 thoughts on “7 Quick Takes #24 x FTSF

  1. That's a bit of a raw deal you got there. I hope the added routine goes some way to making up for it! I daresay I'll feel the same in a few months time when I get back to work.


  2. That's interesting. The more I think about it, the more I think I think in pictures with emotions attached to them. I occasionally think in words, but only a few key words at a time.


  3. You're so right that the grass is always greener. I thought I wanted to work part time now that my son is in school. Trading full-time for part-time means about 1/3 of the money for about 1/2 the hours and now I wonder why I was in such a rush to go back to work. Because I really miss not having a real routine!


  4. We are sticklers for organisation, even at our most disorganised. I feel we may have been built to think in lists somehow. Not to mention in being rarely satisfied with out lot and desiring novelty.


  5. It's funny how when we have a free flowing schedule we eventually want a routine – and when we have a routine we usually want a break from it! I'm a unscheduled kind of person generally, but my calendar is full right now (with the kids) and I sort of like it. It will get old I suppose!

    I like how you listed out your goals (like learning a language etc..). I think it's always good to keep those things in sight no matter what we are doing.


  6. In that state (I vaguely name it Dali-time) after awake yet before sleep, I too see words but as though I am reading them in a book. The words make sense to me but gradually the spelling of them deteriorates yet I still understand them – at this point I know I am nearly asleep. They're not relevant to what's been going on in my life though.

    I may have to learn more about this Saturday Night Drive of yours (though 'early early' sounds terrifying – I'll stick with 'late late') if there are fellow Europeans interested…


  7. “..If I think hard while I'm thinking, I see the words of my thoughts…”

    love the concept.
    I don't (think) I see words as I think, at least not normally* but I do have that experience on occasion when I walk to the edge of the world. (This) is my term for the time spent prior to falling asleep, that special place after the relentless internal dialogue quiets down (a little) but before the non-rational world of sleep and dreams blankets everything. In any event, sometimes I am 'able' to sort some sort of thing going where I am seeing words appear and I read them, the cool thing is, they appear to be sculling (right to left) so that I can see and understand the words…one at a time but in a sequence. I think this might be a useful thing in my mind, as I am comfortable (when this is happening) simply reading the words 'in front of me'…no need to look ahead, not concern about a preview. This attitude is *so* not my normal state, where I spend most of my conscious time. There it's all…'fine but what happens next? quick I have to figure out the future…no time to waste! lol

    Fun post, per usuale… I heard from another person from your on your side of the globe (she was in Germany, I believe) saying that as much as she would enjoy calling in for the Wakefield Doctrine Saturday NIght Drive…the time zone thing made that impractical… but I did say back to her that maybe if we get enough people over there to want to call in, I would do some kind of 'late…late** Saturday Night Drive, to neutralize the time differential… also I am working on getting Skype to work on my cell phone which is how I do the call in…so that might help too… will keep you up to date.

    *normally as in the course of the day, normal activity… as opposed to normalcy normal… minimum chance of that
    ** or 'early early' lol


  8. Elements of my day are fairly rigid – I do love a bit of structure. The weekly routine works for now, but I do want one which is a little more constricted. Amazing the cages we build around ourselves.


  9. I am out of work right now and home with my kids. So having only my husband's paycheck (even though he does have a descent job) can be a bit tight at times. So I can so relate there. Thanks you so very much as always for linking up with us and sharing, too!! 🙂


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