Tag Archives: chocolate

A week of stuff

I haven’t blogged for a week, which has been due to a combination of being too busy doing interesting things or having large chunks of boringness when there’s been nothing to write about. Anyway, things worth telling you about:

* weekend in York. Our best man had his annual birthday walk (his walk 3 years ago was our second date). This year (unlike last year) we didn’t get drenched, so that was good. We started at a village, the name of which I have forgotten (West something-beginning-with-T), and walked about 7 miles mostly along a river through fields and woods, to another village called Masham which has famous breweries (Theakstons, Black Sheep). We had a meal at a hotel next to the Black Sheep brewery when we finished the walk, and I made the mistake of ordering Guinness (my usual beer of choice) instead of something made by Theakstons. I sent the first one back as I thought they’d given me a pint of Coke by mistake as it had no head, and the second one only had about a millimetre of head which had disappeared after a couple of sips, and it didn’t taste as good as usual. I think they were having an off day. Anyway, the walk was good, we got to see lots of friends, and our best man and his wife recently bought a new house with a lovely garden so we got to nose at that too. A lovely weekend.

* interviews. HD has had a couple down south this week and last, we’re still waiting to hear. He thinks one went well, the other not so. Everything is being thoroughly crossed, as it’s getting a bit crucial that we get something soon as I’m about to get my final pay packet from the university. I have an interview lined up at the end of the month for a health visiting job here which I’m not desperate to do but if there’s nothing else going I’m glad I can fall back on it. Still waiting to hear from the part-time jobs I applied for, which I’d prefer if HD gets a job down south as it means I could still be around here a couple of days a week which will be helpful for seeing supervisors/going to the library/sorting out the flat/etc.

* shipmeet. Actually it was also a mini-wibmeet, as 4 of the 10 people who met last night at Ad Lib were also wibloggers. Smudgie and Smudgelet are up for a visit this week, so we had a meal in the evening – unfortunately due to thesis commitments I couldn’t share in their afternoon adventure. It was good to see Smudgie, and also fellow bloggers Surfing and Tractor Girl, and to see some familiar and unfamiliar shippies as well. I was particularly impressed with my pudding – I had a chocolate brownie (which was really really something else, it was gorgeous), but I figured that as it had a strawberry on my plate *and* I declined the accompanying ice-cream, that meant that it was virtually calorie-neutral.

* thesis. Argh. If I could just get my current chapter out of the way then I could get on with something fun (I always think that when I’m at this point in a chapter). Hopefully it will be finished by the end of the week, but only if I step up the drama queen histrionics act. One good thing is that due to the worrying about jobs and money, I really am not remotely fussed about the uncertainty about my thesis extension. I’ve got more important things to worry about.

That is all, I think.

New and shiny

I went to visit a friend this afternoon who had a new shiny baby yesterday (some of you from the Ship will know who I mean). She was very lovely, and it was great to see another new life as we head up to celebrating Easter. I’m sure I’ve pontificated on “God give me a parking space” prayers before (as a general rule I disapprove, unless I need a parking space of course, when it’s different!). This time I didn’t pray, but was very grateful that as I pulled into the (large and very very very very full with other people who were there for visiting hour) car park and wondered how long I was going to have to spend fruitlessly driving around in the hope that I’d be in the right place at the right time to catch someone who was just leaving, someone just, well, left. Right in front of me. It was literally the first space in the car park. Hooray! 🙂

In other news, thanks for the phone advice. I have a new SIM card, idiot-proof (I hope!) instructions on how to transfer my old number to the new SIM card, and didn’t have to put up with a salesperson trying to sell me something I didn’t want (though the woman at Virgin didn’t seem too impressed with me transferring, but unfortunately for her she couldn’t compete with my free handset, and she wasn’t *too* pushy). I have charged up the old phone so I am still contactable (due to the Easter holiday it might be the middle of next week before the new phone has my old number), plus I have a few pounds of credit to use up. I’ve just made sure not to put the back on the old phone, as one of the many problems with it was that it was impossible to take the back off it. The only time I’d ever managed it before was when I accidentally dropped it, and I was a bit squeamish about doing that deliberately! Anyway, hooray about that too.

In other other news, we are away for the weekend. Count Your Blessings posts will still appear until Sunday, and I’ll be back in Glasgow at some point on Monday. We will be staying with some good friends, also meeting up with the outlaws on Saturday who are on holiday in the same area. I expect lots of food to happen. (I’ve bought Easter eggs. I can’t tell you how tempted I’ve been the last day or two, having not really thought about chocolate at all for most of Lent and not having missed it much. Roll on Sunday breakfast!). It will do us good to get away. I hope that the new life and resurrection represented by Easter will be reflected in our luck (specifically HD’s work situation and my thesis, sigh. Am getting a bit fed up with it all).

Of mystery ingredients

Today was my last tutorial of the year (hoorays all round, except that this heralds the imminent arrival of the essays, so never fear there’s still plenty to whinge about).

This evening I had a meal with some friends from church, who are lending me a guidebook for when I go away to the conference next week (it seemed a bit pointless buying one when I’ve only got an afternoon or so free to look round, but I wanted a bit of guidance as to what was worth seeing in that short time). I. is an amazing cook and made a stunning vegetable chilli, which afterwards she revealed contained a mystery secret ingredient: chocolate! I’d never have realised it contained chocolate, it certainly didn’t taste of it, but there was definitely something about it that made it a cut above the usual chilli (and several cuts above the chillis I cook). Good job it wasn’t Lent!

In other news it is COLD here! (or, as Smudgie and Smudgelet would have it, it’s chilly chilly chilly chilly chilly). Main roads have been gritted but side roads (including mine) haven’t been so both road and pavement are covered in black ice. Coming home from my friends’ place this evening I was literally clinging onto walls to avoid falling over – without having consumed a single drop of alcohol! It left me very relieved that I’m not elderly – it is really dangerous out there and was really quite scary. [As an aside, if anyone wants to pray for a safe journey for HD, who is driving up here tomorrow evening, I’d be grateful. I have already nagged him to drive slowly (despite the only one of us to ever get a speeding ticket being, er, me) but I won’t stop worrying till he arrives in one piece]

Quick icon query

So, I’ve uploaded a picture to use as my wibsite icon.  The original picture is of a slice of chocolate cake from our wedding reception.  However, I am a bit concerned that, resized to 48×48, it looks more like a turd.  Please could you take a look at the wibsite front page where you’ll find the icon, and let me know if I’m just imagining it.  Thank you!

😀

Hospitality

Moldovan hospitality is legendary – they simply will not let you get away with refusing biscuits/cake/tea/wine/add your edible/drinkable indulgence of choice here. That is the main reason why I am so lardy at the moment!

Today I did an interview, and the secretary at one point came in with the kettle. Fine I thought, I could do with a cup of tea (I also thought it would help me diplomatically avoid the pile of chocolates on the plate in front of me!). Anyway, she then proceeded to pile a couple of spoonfuls of sugar into the cup (it’s generally assumed, unless you specifically say something, that tea and coffee will be full of sugar, but I couldn’t say something as I was mid-interview and I’m already going to have the transcription include “yes, thank you, I’ll have a tea please” as well as more weighty subjects, so I didn’t really want to discuss it any more!). Anyway, like the trooper I am I smiled and just got on with it, and managed to drink it without gurning (I hate sugar in tea!), and thought I’d got away without having to eat the chocolates.

So I got up to leave, opened my bag to put my diary and dictaphone back into it, and the person I had interviewed swept up a handful of chocolates and chucked them in my bag! I mean really – what would Jesus do? (don’t tell the Chocolate Policeman). Sigh.

Moldova

Just a quickie to say I’m here! And have found an internet cafe (it’s in evil McDonalds, but at least I don’t have to buy any food to use it). Am feeling v. culture-shocked – trying to get used to Romanian spoken with a heavy Russian accent, and much more seriously everyone here is very down and depressed it seems, and trying very hard to leave the country. Moldova’s been the poorest country in Europe for a long time now, but the demographic situation is really scary. If people continue to leave at the rate they’re leaving currently, the country’s screwed*

T&E, it’s far too hot for chocolate, which would melt ickily and be more trouble than pleasure. I will confess to a chocolate icecream though, which isn’t the same at all.

* not the first word that comes to mind, but this is a family wiblog 🙂

Fat’n’Frantic

I have to confess another lapse today to the Chocolate Police. In my defence, I was honestly going to eat the fresh cherries that were in my fridge for afters, but when I opened the bag they, er, weren’t very fresh any more (Smudgelet would have had a coronary, I wonder if Smudgie would be able to convince him that cherries are *supposed* to be green and furry).

However, that is the last lapse ever (yeah, and I’m never ever drinking again either. Cough). I was tidying up the place today (so HD doesn’t know that I’ve been living in a tip for the last month. Unlike the Stately Pile, obviously. Cough again) and came across my wedding dress receipts (I brought them with me in case I needed to email the shop), which included my measurements. I have a bit of work to do on the losing inches front, but my tidy flat has inspired me to sort my inches out too. Otherwise I may need some major corsetry to get into this dress.

Confession, and a little touch of heaven

So I had some chocolate yesterday (thanks for asking T&E, you just *knew*, didn’t you?). I’ve had a bit of a struggle work-wise this week, and have been feeling a bit wobbly and emotional the last couple of days, missing HD and just feeling really drained by life the universe and everything, and in the end I just thought that resisting would make me more miserable than giving in. And you know what? I really didn’t enjoy it at all*.

In other news, I had a lovely few minutes today in the grounds of the Orthodox Cathedral, which is mid-way between my flat and the internet cafe. The church itself was full and there are always worshippers out in the grounds too as they can’t all fit in (I don’t remember this being the case last year; this year the church is full of scaffolding so can’t fit so many people inside), so they broadcast the service on speakers to the faithful outside. The choir there really is magnificent, and the priests have wonderful voices (the liturgy is all chanted), and although I’m not Orthodox and wasn’t really sure what was going on, just standing there listening was just a little touch of heaven; a touch I needed today. I’m missing going to church, which is probably why I’m spending a lot of time on the wibsite and ship these days, and why I even think that I will attend the Greenbelt Communion service this year (I usually don’t bother because it gets on my nerves, but I really am feeling the lack of participating in and receiving communion). The Protestant churches here are either German or Hungarian, neither of which language I understand or speak, so although I can’t really participate with the Orthodox either the services are in Romanian and so I chose to spend a bit of time there instead. I was quite happy in the grounds – I didn’t want to go inside the church particularly, partly because it would stop another person from being able to go in, but mainly because standing on the very edges I was still aware of being included in the midst of the mystery and otherness of it all. I needed that today.

* I still ate it all though. Sigh.