Monday, 14 July 2008


What was I saying about trying to do too much.....?

This weekend, I spent Friday in London, Ian had a gig in Leeds and we went to Ullswater for a weekend with the sailing club! In the efforts of not overdoing it (!), we decided not to try and drive to the lakes on Friday night after the gig, but take it a bit more leisurely and appear at some point on Saturday. A very good plan.

We managed to arrive in the sun and spent a very happy afternoon on and by the lake. Ian and Hugh took out Hugh's boat and proceeded to fail to fly a spinaker and wear themselves out (it was pretty windy). I sat very contentedly at the end of a jetty and read Henry James with a flask of tea.

The evening was spent with the traditional barbeques - far too much food and a little huddling under the gazebo to avoid a couple of short showers. Frisbee went on until pretty much everyone had sustained at least one injury due to a flying disc hurtling at them through the twilight, one frisbee had been into a barbeque, and one had been almost irretrievably lost in the dark woods!

Hugh, Steve, Paul, Ian and I got up at 5:30am for the traditional early morning sail. Or drift as the case may be. But it is always worth it.

There was a little bit of wind.....

The sky was blue, the sun was hot, and the lake was beautifully millpond-like. We ate jaffa cakes and drank tea while making the most of 5 minutes of wind, and then drifted merrily in the sun. The only downside was that I discovered that I really am too fat now to spend much time hunched up in a boat!


After bacon and eggs for breakfast, we headed back to the boats. Some sailing, some reading of the paper, some chatting, some watching the swans - who could ask more from a Sunday?

Its hard not to be relaxed on Ullswater....

Monday, 7 July 2008

Still busy....

The idea was that after a May and June of teaching sailing courses, running novice racing and darting around the country visiting friends, July would be a quiet time when we would get around to actually spending time with our friends in York, get to grips with all the baby-related stuff that we were no doubt supposed to have bought/thought about, and maybe even relax a bit. So far I wouldn't say we were totally achieving that aim!

This weekend only had a choir concert and a gig, but somehow it all became rather busy! Saturday was spent sleeping, rehearsing, buying supplies for the choir social and attending the concert. It was actually one of the best concerts that we have sung for a while - shame that the Press wasn't there. It was a summery one, full of jolly music about laying garlands on coffins, flowers and dubious relationships with monks. But the notes weren't too hard, so the Micklegate Singers actaully showed off that we can really sing music! We did a good bit of childrens-choir-esque Chilcot (I had to restrain myself from adding jazz hands to the last chord), and some superb Whitacre which I felt that we sung really well. Full programme is here.

The rest of the choir seemed to enjoy it too, so the socialising afterwards went on for a while, and we were still collecting up empty bottles of wine after 11pm!

On Sunday, Maybe She's a Clone played the Junction in York. It was a very wet evening, and the audience was correspondingly damp, but it was a really good gig. It sounded good, and despite the band insisting that they had spooned all sorts of things, very little of this was obvious to the audience. We hung around like the polite sort of audience that we are to hear the second band which was a sort of electro-metal band. Not terribly promising, but they had sequenced all their lights and brought along a few extras (fun lasers), so it was a really good show. I was very impressed with the carefully choreographed facial expressions (I'm not joking!!).

So it was a very fine weekend, but still rather tiring! Now we just need a weekend to recover!