Are you LISTening? Then I’ll begin…..

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Having just said I wanted to write about more serious stuff on my blog, I just needed to update you on a few things first.  I’ve written a list:

1. Burlesque dancing

It’s going well. I am still rubbish at it, I will never master the art of shimmying whilst dipping and I am more Rita von Cheese than Dita von Teese but that doesn’t matter.  It’s fun, the girls are lovely and I get to wear frilly stuff.  There is a possibility I will even perform later this year with the group!!!!

2. Italian classes

Yup, finished the classes and have been to Italy since.  I wasn’t sure how much I would use the stuff we learned in class.  I didn’t feel the need to ask anyone where the museum was or what time the next train to Milan left.  However, I found that the basics I did learn gave me the confidence to try and speak the language and to ask the locals how to say the things I didn’t know.  I’m pretty much fluent now…… And Italy was beautiful, as always

3. Gym and my personal trainer

Oh forget that.  I never intend to set foot in a gym again as long as I live

4. Transport

I got a new car.  Well, not brand new but new to me.  Her name is Bunty and she is a Mini.  I’ve never had the inclination to name a car before but I do actually love this one.  And she goes!!!

I am sure I have more to tell you – but I won’t do it now.  I’ll save it for next time

And anyway, I am just in the middle of writing a list on things I need to do

The Italian Circle

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Last night I had a surreal experience.  Not my MOST surreal experience ever, but certainly for this year.

After our Italian classes finished a few weeks ago, I kept in touch with one of the girls I met there.  We had been told about a local group that met monthly to talk about all things Italian with guest speakers and, when we found out this month there would be a speaker talking about Italian cuisine, we arranged to go together.

We had no idea what to expect but I had visions of cultured, sophisticated, sociable people standing around drinking wine and munching on nibbles,  laughing and talking with maybe the odd bit of Italian thrown in.  I envisaged them being very cosmopolitan and generally, rather cool.   I decided the social niceties would be followed by a brief talk, maybe a few slides, and then some free food.

What actually happened was we turned up early, only to be greeted by an elderly couple who couldn’t have been a day under eighty.   There were a few others already there and not one was under seventy.  There was a long table, behind which the ‘committee’ were sat, offering red or white wine at £2 a glass and a couple of bowls of crispy things.  (Oh and a plate of parmesan, which was later drizzled in really expensive balsamic vinegar, and some panforte, which was actually rather delicious).

Anyway, the room filled up with more octogenarian and then one of the ‘committee’ members stood up and introduced the speaker.  He got all muddled with his microphone so there was a lot of fussing around but, eventually, our speaker began her talk.   Contrary to what I had expected, she spoke about the history of Italian cuisine, going back to the 13th century and it was actually really interesting, along with the slides of paintings she showed  to illustrate her talk.

Half way through the talk, we glanced across at the ‘committee’ table and noticed two of the old dears had nodded off, arms folded in front of them, heads bowed.  I thought my friend may get an attack of the giggles then and wondered how that might go down with our elderly friends.  She managed to contain herself however, and they slept on.  Across the room another woman was fast asleep too and an old gent in front of us looked worryingly dead.  Fortunately, he woke up later, he was just napping.

We were like fish out of water at this event.  Younger than everyone by years.  I supposed I should have known it would be full of oldies, this is, after all, the sort of thing my mother goes to and she is almost 86.

I hope I am as active as these people (and my mum) when I am that old.  It’s almost a shame you have to get that old to be able to go to these things, or so it seems…where are all the younger people, are they just not interested?  I can’t believe it.

I feel a new venture brewing……..

365 Project. A year of projects!


It’s always nice to have a new project I think.  Unfortunately, I have many ‘new’ projects -started and never finished.  Needlework, knitting (I still have a cardigan I started for my six month old daughter.  She is 29 now), painting and drawing, machine embroidery, web designing, photography, blogging (well, that’s kind of consistent in a fluctuating way), gym and keep fit….the list just goes on.

So, this year, I am going to write the list out and work my way through it and do every one of these projects by the end of 2012.

To add to the list, and a brand new project for me, I shall be starting Italian classes next week with KD.

I’m really looking forward to this as it is a very different sort of project compared to my usual ventures.  It is only a 12 week course, just to get us through our next holiday in Italy in June.  As long as they teach me how to say “Just leave the bottle on the table thank you”  and “mine’s a double”  I will consider it money well spent…..



We visited Italy earlier this year and stayed in a little place called Scala, up in the hills near Amalfi.  It is a beautiful place and we will return

I had just started sketching again at the time and here is one I did of Ravello, which we could see from our hotel

We are off again next week, this time to Porto Santo so I expect I’ll do a bit more drawing while I am there

To be honest, I don’t know how I manage to find time to go to work these days!!!