Dreck the halls…

Today I dealt beautifully with a grumpy person and had my first taste of blood in ages. No – the two weren’t linked, in case that’s what you were thinking!

I was on my way somewhere and while I was waiting for my train (like I said – if only the turning-into-a-bat thing was true!), I decided to pop into the shop in the station entrance to get a drink and investigate their magic and sparkle…

So, I’m clutching my fruit juice (avoid orange juice in this weather – for all its vitamin C, it encourages mucus. Not cool), and I queue up. In front of me is an old dear surrounded by plastic bags, one of which topples over in front of me and threatens to spill its contents all over my feet. I pick it up and re-balance it for her.

At which point this woman turns around and glares at me with all the fury of hell and damnation in her eyes. She snatches the bag and rustles it into position in front of me. I try to explain what I was doing. Again the hell-glare. Normally, I’d be tempted to harrumph or say “Whatever” and glare back. But today something different happened. Something assertive. Before I knew it, the words popped out of my mouth: “I apologise”, said the words; “I meant no offence.”

Her head went down and she muttered something. The cashier’s bell went. It was her turn. With a softer hell-glare (possibly a limbo glare instead) she mutters to me “You better go first”. I thanked her, paid for my juice and got the heck out of Dodge.

Normally I’d spend the next half hour working out how I could have handled the situation better (vampires are not exactly known for their social skills, and I am no exception). Not today. I knew I had handled it perfectly.   And then, I just got on with my day…

Now to the other good thing of the day… How can I describe it, the taste of fresh blood…? Imagine you’ve been caught in freezing, torrential rain. You’re soaked. You’re wracked by the bone-snapping intensity of the cold. You have to trudge three miles to get home. When you do, you get into a fabulously hot shower, which washes every scrap of cold, every ache, every shiver, away.

Then you follow it up with a steaming bowl of your favourite soup, which slides down your throat like a silken balm of warmth and goodness. Blood tastes like a combination of the shower and the soup. Just like this did. Not too salty (good news for the blood pressure); not too sweet (useful as I’ve avoided the family curse of diabetes) and not too metallic… Drat. Anaemia. Okay, so it was my blood, alright? Don’t get freaked out. Or grossed out. Or both.

It’s quite simple. I was on the train. I felt blood trickling down my face. Turns out I had at some point during the journey caught my face with my nails (which I’ve been growing for a party. I don’t know why, but…). The talons thing that I skirted around before? Well, that’s the main reason why I keep my nails so short… When they grow, they are incredibly strong and quite dangerous, to be honest! I’d give Lady Deathstrike something to think about… Anyway, back to the cleanup operation. I checked in my pockets. No tissue. I checked in my bag. No anything. So what was I supposed to do? I simply scraped it off my face and er, ‘disposed of it thoughtfully’. All that means is that no one on the commuter train home was subjected to my accidental facial haemorrhaging. Oh, and that I’m anaemic. Again. Apricots and A+ juice it is for me then…

Obviously, this time next week will be Boxing Day, and you’ll all have something better to do and read about my ramblings. Hopefully the day will find you happy and contented. If not, then may you find joy. I will be thinking of you, and I will not be the only one.

Have a wonderful Christmas. See you all in the New Year!


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The four signs of madness

I thought I’d do things a little differently today. I’m out for a long walk along the river. I’m actually walking along the banks of the river, making a voice memo recording of this, as I don’t particularly fancy being one of those people who marches along, head down, tapping away furiously at a virtual keyboard then bumps into someone and blames them for not looking where I was going! The only trouble is, it’s a nice day – and by ‘nice day’ I mean there’s a mostly blue sky and so it’s quite inviting, if cold. I like the cold.

The only trouble is that you get a lot of people walking past, so you have to be very careful what you admit to out loud and…

….that was a bit of a long pause. Yep, somebody walked past. So, there we go. It’s a lovely day. I do like being outdoors. Outdoors is my natural element, I think. Lovely and earthy. And speaking of earth, no, I don’t have a coffin, but I do have a lovely comfy bed.

Ooh, blackberries! The blackberries are still out! What?! Blackberries in December?! Blackberries in September, yes, but in October, November and December?! Still, we also had them in July and August… What is going on with Mother Nature? She seems to be going through some sort of teenage rebellion. She’s got one up on me, then!

Anyway, as I said, today I’m walking down by the river. There’s a lovely wintry snap in the air and everyone’s footsteps are crunchy. I’ve just noticed a section of the river down by the town lock has been completely closed off. The lock itself is completely empty of water, while on either side, the frustrated water sits impatiently. I’m not sure what is being done. I can only presume it’s for some kind of repairs to the lock walls or something. All I know is that there are a lot of extremely cheesed-off ducks on either side of the artificial ‘dam’. They’re really, really annoyed!

But life’s like that, isn’t it? You see a path that you desperately want to take and something, for some reason (often totally out of the blue), blocks your way. And you just want to yell “GETOUTTAMYWAY!!!” but it doesn’t get out of your way. It’s not fair. It’s mocking you. It’s doing this deliberately, it seems… It just stays there, and you don’t know why at the time. You may not know why until afterwards. You may not know for ages why or you may never know. But you don’t know what is going on in the background.

Things block our paths for a reason. Other paths open up for us for a reason. However, the ducks probably don’t realise that. In fact, I’m pretty sure that the ducks don’t realise that. I highly doubt that there is a duck out there that has the awareness to say “Ah… I understand… the structural integrity of the lock wall foundations have been seriously compromised by wear and tear due to sustained usage over time… Therefore intervention by the stick-winged two-legs is necessary to maintain the safety of that structure, thereby ensuring the future safety of those that built it; those that use it and, most importantly, my feathered self. Thus being essential – indirectly – to the continuation of my progeny.”

Hm. No. All I can hear is a chorus of furious [QUACK]s.

Mind you. I’m a fine one to talk. Here I am, chatting away to myself, essentially.

First sign of madness: talking to yourself.

Second sign of madness: talking to yourself and laughing at your own jokes.

Third sign of madness: arguing with yourself.

Fourth sign of madness: losing the argument.

Get over it, ducks….


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Ding-dong-merrily-on-huh

And here we are, the first weekend of December. Everyone is getting ready for Christmas. Yes, including me. At least this year, nobody has asked me whether or not I celebrate Christmas. Of course I do! If nobody sees me braving the heaving consumerist hordes, it’s because I finished my Christmas shopping last month. Six months either side of Christmas and this town is crazy.

I did venture into town today though. Needs must. And I got the fright of my life while I was there.

I was walking through the shopping centre and I saw two raggedy groups of creatures at either end of the concourse, shambling mindlessly along. Suddenly a spark of recognition ignites on either side and they begin approaching each other intently, their feet shuffling, hideous mewling noises issuing from their stained mouths.

Others watch in horror as they edge closer and ever closer. The squealing meander seems to go on forever. They begin to raise their arms, reaching out as the others approach. Suddenly, the wailing rises to a high-pitched screeching as heavy-laden arms flail arhythmically and they all lump into one squealing tangle.

As it turned out, it wasn’t the Zombie Apocalypse after all. It was just a group of teenage girls greeting each other. Crisis averted. But it pays to be alert.

And that’s why I don’t go out much.

When I got back home, I seriously needed a drink. No, not wine, or anything like that. I don’t touch the stuff. Trust me, people who know me in real life say it’s probably best that I don’t drink. I’m not quite sure whether that’s an insult, a compliment, or just a very astute observation… So, to coin a phrase, “I never drink… wine.” Then again, I never drink tea or coffee either, but it just wouldn’t have the same punch to it. I bet you’re trying the phrase out in your head right now, aren’t you? And does it work? I’ll bet it doesn’t.

Obviously, actual blood is off the menu, but I do need an adequate substitute in order to restore the old energy quickly (yes, I do eat ‘proper food’, but sometimes an avocado salad just doesn’t hit the spot, know what I mean?)

So what are the choices? There’s that time, isn’t there, when you’re a child and you play dress-up as vampires (although I since found out that most little girls tend to dress up as princesses. Oops). Anyway, you dress up with your best frills and trills and use your mum’s best pillowcase for a cape and all you can find to drink is a certain blackcurrant squash as your ‘blood’ (Except I only ever had it as a holiday treat). And then, when you grow up a bit more, you get more creative and have tomato juice (yeeuch). And then, when you’re an actual adult, you’re allowed to pop Worcestershire sauce and a tot of vodka in (is that correct? Is that how you make a bloody Mary?). I hate tomato juice. *Shudder*. Don’t get me wrong, it’s wonderful stuff, and all that lycopene is very handy for lessening the horrible burning effects of sunlight, but…

Anyway, I do have a delightful little pick-me-up. It’s one of my little secrets that I’ll let you in on. I call it my A+ juice (get it?!). You juice 1 beetroot, 3 or 4 chunks of broccoli, 5 or 6 curly kale leaves, ¼ of a pomegranate, 2 apples, ½ a lemon and a couple of sprigs of mint. It’s ‘bloody’ good, if you’ll pardon the pun/expression! Tastes wonderful and earthy, with a smack in the chops of pure sweetness. Seriously, try it.  Everything is in there for a reason. Look it up and you’ll find out why…. I’m now going to ‘juice up’ to get myself ready for the next phase…. Wrapping presents… Oh joy (to the world).

Happy Googling!

 

 


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