Not bad at all

In spite of another late one (yes, last night, and heading that way again right now – hellooooo (and goodbye) 2am) the day’s gone OK, which was a relief because it had the potential to be an utter bust.

Shopping this morning with Sis, Niece and Neff was a varied experience with Niece and I as tired and snuggly as each other (which worked really well, until trying to snuggle a dinky 3 y/o has to combine with pushing a loaded trolley and steering against the ‘help’ given by the 5 y/o) and Neff deciding alternately to help on ‘missions’* and ask for pretty much everything in store.

*A really great trick for kids in the supermarket, especially if they’re old enough to wander the aisles alone or have a tag-team grown-up to go with them: give them missions for one or two objects at a time off the shopping list, preferably items which will be at opposite ends of the store. This gets them out from under your feet repeatedly while you continue the rest of your shopping unhindered. As the ‘tag-team’ half, I can vouch for the fact that denying their requests for every shiny item they see is really easy because you can fall back on “I don’t know if we can get that – Mummy/Daddy’s not here to ask. Let’s leave it on the shelf for now” and rely on their little mind to get distracted by something else by the time you’re all back at the trolley.

I was pleased to find a cheap biscuit jar which I can use as a small compost crock. The Actual, In Fact compost crocks seem to be rather on the expensive side, coming as they do with a range of features including handles, lids and small, activated carbon anti-smell filters. I want something wee, which will fill up quickly and inspire me to nip 10 minutes to the allotment to empty it into the large composter. The amount of teabags we get through, I’m anticipating several trips a week, which will all help with the slow process of ‘getting slightly less unfit’.

Home again and a relaxed lunch in bed (yes, not just breakfast, folks. I’ve not progressed as far as dinner in bed, but two meals in bed on the same day seems noteworthy) was followed by a nap. A strictly short nap, so that I could get up and get on with assignments; a doomedly, never-going-to-pan-out kind of strictness. The alarm clock was in reach.

Far later than intended, I began the dreaded assignments, starting well by taking 20 minutes to create a calendar (from scratch, on Paint, because I didn’t want another document open and taking up space in my toolbar) which told me when my assignments need to be in, in a clear, visual way. Nice.

Work started in earnest then, and I checked my emails, played Words With Friends on Facebook and read updates from the blogs I follow.

Work started in earnest then, and I tried the new hotmail to see if I’d sent myself any useful emails from college (I hadn’t) and mucked around with my memory stick to see if I’d saved any relevant work (I hadn’t).

Work began in earnest then and I wrote a few sentences and got sucked back into Facebook.

By the end of the afternoon (about 8pm) I’d finally gotten into it and was loath to break off to go shopping, so Husby and I came up with an incredible shopping list (8 items) and decided we could probably manage to go tomorrow instead, so he cooked while I continued.

I finished, delighted, at about 10pm. I’d drafted, modified, double-checked and saved. It was ready to upload.

Then I turned the assignment brief sheet over and discovered two further (LARGE) tasks on the back.

I won’t describe the shade of blue the air around my brain turned.

By this time the glands underneath my tongue had swelled up and I was finding it difficult to speak or swallow, so I quite lost the will to live and left it all for another day. I dunno what it is about throat conditions (maybe that you can’t dissociate from them because they’re right there, in your head-ish area, being uncomfortable) but they’re harder to concentrate through than a painful extremity. I still blame Niece, who had strep throat recently, even if my symptoms are probably nothing like strep throat and that’s not it at all.

The thing which has been plaguing my brain since I thought of it yesterday is what would be different about life if someone all those years ago had decided that South was Up.

It occurred to me whilst watching the local weather forecast – why do I see the UK that way up. I then wondered if Australia was the other way up because of being in the Southern Hemisphere, then I realised that this was (surely) ridiculous – maps aren’t shown from the middle out (like gravity), they’re done by the compass. And why should North be up? Who chose that?

Imagine all the things that would be different if South was Up.

  • The weather forecast
  • Geography lessons
  • Atlases
  • The way we picture our location in our mind


Though Wikipedia comments on the Indo-European roots of the names of the cardinal directions, it has nothing to say on by whom they were decided, and though perhaps not every culture works with them (some having directions as ‘towards the mountains’ or ‘towards the sea’) certainly every culture with maps seems to put North at the top.

And I’d like to know why.


2 thoughts on “Not bad at all

  1. Fortunately the store we go to doesn't have candy at the checkout. Lots do though. The dearth doesn't seem to change the whining though.

    I love the coupon culture over there – either I'm too thick to find them, or it's just not really something we 'do' here – coupons are far and few between and tend to be more to do with reward schemes run by the shops themselves. I like the idea of a scavenger hunt though – might borrow that. Or develop shopping bingo or summink.

    Heheh I'm glad you like my weird thinkings! That's what makes the blogosphere go round – finding people who make your brain work in entirely new ways. I love that about this community. New neurons firing off all the time.


  2. Your brain fascinates me. Never would I ponder anything even remotely similar to what would life be like if south was up. Never. I love that your brain thinks like that. It expands the thoughts in my brain.
    As for the shopping with kids, keeping them busy with their own tasks is the best idea. I have done it since the bigs were littles. I have even made cards for them and we have a scavenger hunt through the store. Or I let them hold the coupons and find the items.
    In the checkout line, instead of drooling and begging for all of the candy (Do the checkout lines in the UK have lots of candy?) I have them find all the letters of the alphabet in the candy names.


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