oh! also...

Wednesday, June 27

...an appeal for followers: if you read this blog and like it, would you be very kind and follow me via this ‘join this site’ button over there ------>

(Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you!)

Picture from: cake with giants.

daisies and danger.

Wednesday, June 27

Last week I got caught up reading the Hunger Games series so spent a lot of the week (in the house, or on the bus, or in the staff-room after eating soup) with my nose in one of those books. After reading a lot of (interesting but) difficult texts* for university it was a nice change to read something that was compelling and didn't require too many literary dictionaries to decode.

(*When I say 'difficult texts', I mean ones like T.S. Eliot’s 'The Wasteland' (aka ‘I stuck lots of bits of other people’s poems together to make something which is now unintelligible’), Samuel Beckett’s ‘(If you’re) Waiting for Godot (you’ll be waiting a while)’ (which is actually hilarous and I loved it, but watch: this), and Don DeLillo’s ‘White *I-have-a-very-bleak-view-of-humanity* Noise’. No irreverence intended, of course.)

This week, I'm trying to be a little bit more productive so I have started work on my dissertation research, tidied my tip of a room, and I am going to start studying the Highway Code! As of yet I have managed to avoid killing anyone with the car (...if you don’t count that guy with the beard last week), so on those grounds I'd say the driving lessons are still going okay.

Anyway! I thought I'd put up some amusing road signs that I came across in a book today:

[one.] Beware of the ducks (thankfully I've not come across too many ducks yet. This makes me think of the story 'Make Way for Ducklings' which my Mum read out to my little brother when he still qualified as 'little').
[two.] Watch out for Mr. Darcys. 

[three.] Beware! ‘Migratory toads crossing’ (...?)

[four.] Watch out for tankers...

[five.] Not to make you feel anxious or anything, but are you wearing your scuba suit?

(The pictures of daisies are not really relevant to anything in this post. I just quite like them. They were taken in: the Botanic Gardens last summer, in the cutest little town called Cromarty two summers ago, in St Andrews about five summers ago.)

did you know...?

Thursday, June 14

Toast comes from the French word 'Toster' or Latin 'Tostum' (to scorch), and was invented in the eighteenth century. In olden times 'the toast' used to be a slice of roasted bread - toast - put into a jug of beer and it was the last to drink who got the toast. He then had to make a speech. Hence came the present day connotation 'The Toast'.
 ~ From The Book of Sandwiches by Gwen Robyns.

(Well, I never...!)

You might be wondering why I own a book called 'The Book of Sandwiches'? Well, I bought it today from a second-hand bookshop (for a mere 30p. I'm no expert, but as far as my knowledge of sandwich-related literature goes, I'd say I found myself a bargain). I bought it as part of my dissertation research. I'm writing mine on 'Food and Found Stories' (...it's a bit more complicated than that. But, yeah, basically my research over the summer is people-watching in cafes and supermarkets, and reading recipe books for short story ideas. Brilliant!)

(Oh, p.s. You may have noticed that the picture in this post is not of toast or sandwiches. It's of a scone. First of all: well done! Second of all: I can assure you that there were a number of very delicious sandwiches just a few inches away from where this scone was (in The Butterfly and the Pig). I just like this picture better than the sandwich ones.)

du Boursin.

Monday, June 11

I just remembered about this advert and had to share it. Ha ha.

(p.s. after four years years of 'not getting round to it yet', I've finally started learning how to drive. It's a lot of coordinating, and it's a tiny bit off-putting when other cars will insist on driving past you on the road... but I'm actually quite enjoying it so far!)


Monday, June 11

In work on Friday, around dinner time, the cafe started filling up. It had been quiet all day (like, tumbleweed kind of quiet). In the space of about half an hour though the place was buzzing.

Taking orders, setting tables, scraping dishes – for the next few hours, we were all scurrying about trying to keep on top of everything, trying to make sure all the customers were happy. And then, as always happens, (practically) everyone decided to leave at the same time.

(I actually think customers plan this out before they leave their houses. They probably send each other secret messages via some sort of underground ‘customer communication’ system.

‘Right, folks,’ they say to each other, ‘come the stroke of seventeen minutes past eight, we will all ask for our bills, we will all pay our dues, and then, without looking back, we will all vacate the premises, leaving a daunting array of dirty tables behind us!’)
We tried to clean up the mess as quickly as possible - stacking teacups, gathering napkins, wiping down tables. While we tidied, two ladies sat sipping their tea and watching us.

‘You’re doing a grand job there,’ one of them said to me while I was tidying up close beside them.

Later on, when the place was much tidier and the two ladies were getting up to leave, the other one took my hand and said:

‘I know where your double is in the world.'

‘Oh really?’ I said, expecting her to say that she knew my sister, or my mum from somewhere.
‘Yes,’ she said looking me straight in the eye. ‘Munich!’

‘Oh!’ I said.

‘Yes,’ and she raised her eyebrows meaningfully. ‘They say that everyone in the world has a double out there, don’t they? Well, yours is in Munich, and she’s my niece. The two of you... so similar. Beautiful!’

‘Thank-you...’ I said. And she squeezed my hand, then let go of it to button up her coat. And away she went.

People are always telling me that I look like other people. Some obvious ones like: 'You look so much like your Mum!' or 'You and your sister must be twins' or (weirdly) 'Your brother and you look exactly the same!' I have also been told by quite a few different people that I look like all of the people dotted around this blog post.
In order: 1.) Rapunzel* from Tangled, 2.) Amelie Poulain from Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain (this is actually my favourite film, and character-wise I think I am quite similar to her), 3.) the character Alice Cullen from the Twilight series (not a big fan), 4.) Carey Mulligan (...apparently!), 5.) Bonnie from Toy Story 3, and 6.) Katie Holmes.


(*oddly enough, my spell-checker didn’t recognise the word ‘Rapunzel’. Obviously my computer is quite uncultured!)
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