31 Oct 2010

Hestia and ......Samhain

Just a brief note as it's been pretty busy here today because it's a) Hallowe'en and b) Samhain

Everyone knows about the former - kids dressed up as Dracula conning sweeties out of you by telling hideously ancient jokes or maybe even singing a song.  Warning: Don't turn up here and expect to go Dooking For Apples without having to do some kind of a turn, mister. I am a HARD Hallowe'en taskmaster :-)

Samhain might be a bit less familiar.  It's one of the 8 main celebrations on the Wheel of The Year and it's actually my favourite one.

This is the time to see what needs to be cut out or removed from your life - got toxic friends? bad habits? unhappy memories? This is the perfect time of year to start casting them aside.

AFter all the trick or treaters have gone, we sit down to dinner.  I set an additional place at the table and dish out the food and also a glass of wine.  This setting represents all those whom we love who are not here to dine at our tables any longer.

I spend the time with Sonshine regaling him with stories of my dad, showing him pictures of his grampa...I make sure that my father's memory becomes a memory for my son - thereby keeping him alive in our hearts.  Even Tertarus gets out the old black and white pix of his parents.  It's a lovely evening, many remembered good times tinged with sadness.

Once Sonshine has gone to bed and Tertarus has got himself in front of the TV with a glass of wine, I will carry out my own private ritual - nothing very exciting, just blessings to those beyond the veil and an offer of wine (that extra glass of wine set out for dinner) to the Lord of the Underworld. I'll draw a few Tarot cards and then come back indoors to the warmth...and work up my Tarot reading for myself.

I've been busy yesterday - I made this animoto film for Will Worthington's website.  Will is quite a big wheel in the Tarot art world and I'm lucky enough to be handling his website for him.

I've not a clue why some of the images seem to be squint in the film as they are all perfectly ok on my computer!

Samhain Blessings to you all - take a little time tonight to work out what you can benefit from cutting out of your life....and let me know what you do for Samhain!

29 Oct 2010

Hestia and a quick Sonshine update

The letter came home from school about a fortnight ago with all the details of the Hallowe'en School Disco. 'Are you going?' I asked my Sonshine.  I was met with a look of disdain and a snort.  That would be a 'no' then.

Cut to Monday and Sonshine announces that he has changed his mind and he IS going to the disco.  On the Thursday.  As a Zombie Abraham Lincoln.

25 Oct 2010

Hestia and..the wedding of the year!

Hestia - nervous - but zipped up - HUZZAH!!
So, on her hen night, the Vet announced that she wanted me to do a reading; it could be a 4-liner or a page from Captain Corelli's Mandolin.  I wailed, I pleaded my hormones.  She would not be moved. I opted for the 4 liner.

20 Oct 2010

Hestia...and The Great Escape

Hande Hoche if you're a hamster in disguise!
Juno said, right from the word go, how odd it must be to have a pet that spends its whole tiny life trying to get the FUCK away from you.  Well, my mother didn't say that EXACTLY, I'm paraphrasing...

But last night, the inevitable happened: Nibbles, the hamster, escaped.

19 Oct 2010

Hestia.....gets burned at the stake at last

So, we're in the London Dungeons and we've been funnelled through crypts, vaults and even  the Ripper's Whitechapel and we are now shuffling into some kind of 18th century court room.  I've been laughing at all the terrible jokes cracked by the actor 'narrators' and having a lovely time when.....

'You there - get in the dock.'

Bugger me.  It was ME the Clerk of the Court was pointing to.

18 Oct 2010

Hestia and London (in numbers)

4 - days in the glorious city

£5.76 - each, for breakfast in the hotel.  Shouldn't have booked it. Vauxhall has wonderful hispanic/portugese delis - could have had massive breakfast for all 4 of us for a fiver.

3 - of course there were only 3 of us, not 4 of us in London......  *brain a bit fuddled*

£30 each to get on!!!!
£30 - to go on the London Eye.  EACH.  We stood on the ground with ice cream cones and watched it go round and then spent £60 on BOOKS.

1 - small case with 4 days of clothing crammed in.  £60 of books can really dent your clothing space.  Came home dressed like a fecking yeti.

2- evening meals in the local Spanish restaurant - tapas - 7 plates for 3 of us.  I was so unwell I thought I had gallstones.

4 hours spent standing upright in the bathroom because of hideous pains that may or may not be gallstones. No-one came to see if I was alright, even though I was moaning gently with the pain and lack of sleep.

5 - number of museums visited - Natural History (Dinosaur heaven for a small boy); V&A (heaven for Hestia); Science Museum (Heaven for Tertarus); Imperial War Museum (small boy/big boy heaven) and....some other museum that I have temporarily forgotten.

1 - store that I actually got into on Regent Street - National Geographic Shop.  Chap behind the counter made my day by looking startled when I spoke to him in perfectly enunciated Scottish English.  He thought, for some inexplicable reason, that I was Spanish.  Made my bloody day! Wandered around pretending to be Penelope Cruz....

20 minutes - permitted shopping time in Harrods.  They do not have any ordinary looking burds working in the beauty hall there, do they?  That said, the girls at Chanel were very helpful when I looked utterly crestfallen at failing YET AGAIN to secure the illusive Paradoxal nail polish.....

1 - lunch spent with my younger brother who was down in Lahndan on business.

0 - the number of pounds that my younger brother had on him to actually contribute to lunch *sigh* somethings NEVER change.

1- visit to estoteric bookshop Watkins.  Bought a book on Sacred Geometry.  I'm sure I'll read it.  One Day.

100% necessary - my laptop to maintain communication with the Twitterverse...and to work out which Tube Station went with which museum.

Nil - quantity of digital cameras that we remembered to take with us.  Was reduced to buying a disposable camera for going to the dinosaurs in Nat History Museum.  The unfinished spool will lie in a drawer until the day Sonshine is clearing out my things after my funeral.

Nil - quantity of eye-make up remover that I brought with me.  Removed my mascara every night with neat soap on folded up bit of toilet roll.  Class.  Now have eyes like pissholes in snow.

1 - spiritual home - the V&A - I'm coming back to visit just a bit more of it.  Only managed the jewellery, the gallery with all the buddhas, the fashion section and the SHOP!!!!! The SHOP is fablas!!!!  Nearly bought myself a Ballet Russe scarf for £18.50 only to find out at the till it was £185.00!! (note to self - take reading glasses with you EVERYWHERE)

200% disappointed that I didn't manage to meet up with Christina from Fashion's Most Wanted :-(

1 - noisy radiator.  It was like the bowels of a ship when it cranked into gear in the early morning.

nil - hot water for a shower by 8am thanks to the legion of early risers.

5 - breakfasts that consisted of 2 tiny croissants*, 2 half slices of dutch cheese, 2 x quarter slices of gammon, one coffee and a tub of something indescriminate which may, or may not, have been yoghurt.  *Nearly brought one home as a captive wife for Kevin in the breadbin for Part 2 of the experiment into dough eugenics.

100% wanted to stay in London.  I love it.  Much greener than I expected.  OK - people drive like bloody madmen, but I could get used to that......I confess to casting an eye over a sign that said Seasonal Waiting Staff required and wondering whether Tertarus and Sonshine would really miss me if I ran away to London to pursue my dreams.

If only I knew what my bloody dreams were.

Hestia loves.....Lahndan

Not the view from our hotel
From the moment the plane banked steeply over central London and the glittering glass of Canary Wharf reached up its slender arms towards me through the shimmering blue haze, I knew that I was in severe danger of falling head over heels for London.

Like a kid, I peered out the window over the top of Sonshine's head, misting up the glass as I pointed out The Gherkin, the O2 Arena and the building site that is London's 2012 Olympics.  Sonshine nodded sagely: 'Just like on the telly, isn't it Mum?'

10 Oct 2010

Hestia and The Hen Night (in numbers)

4pm - the ferry that I caught.  Had wanted to meet up with some old friends (B&C) in Glasgow on Sat afternoon, but they weren't going to be about.

7.15pm - the time we had booked the taxi to take us to the Cocktail Bar in Glasgow city centre.

7.20pm - The time the other two reprobates FINALLY showed up.

7.30pm - We walk into the cocktail bar with me saying how I'd wanted to meet up with my old friends and GUESS WHO IS SITTING HAVING THEIR DINNER IN THE SAME RESTAURANT???? B&C!!!! The weirdness continued because apparently my name had just been uttered before I tottered  towards them in the restaurant.

1 - the number of Cosmpolitan cocktails I had - I was going to be SENSIBLE tonight.

6 - The number of bottles of wine we had with dinner - two fizzy, four red.  The idea of being sensible is long dead and I have confessed about having Kevin in my bread bin:

'So, you've got a shaun o pacalatte in your bread bin,' giggled M.


'Yer wee Kevin guy, he's a shaun o pacalatte,' repeats M taking, perhaps unwisely, yet another glass of red wine from our never ending supply of bottles.

'Pain au Chocolate,' I corrected before bursting into uncontrolled fits of laughter and had to be escorted to the toilet because I thought I'd honestly wet myself.

100% - mascara all over my face after laughing at the shaun o pacalatte spoonerism.

50% - dry knickers.

0 - number of brain cells fully engaged when deciding whether to go HOME TO BED or go on to the CASINO.

£30 - spent on betting chips in the casino.

4.00am - the time our £30 was finally removed from our sweaty little hands and we were poured into taxis home.

7am - when I looked at the clock and wondered whether I should just get up to be sick to get it over and done with.

8am - the time I had to rouse my exhausted body from bed and get ready to go to the venue with the bride.

1 - slice of toast to keep me going.

1 - number of times me and the mad woman from Kilmarnock got lost trying to find the Kilmarnock Road.  Hint:  It's so big you can see it from space.

10am - time we arrived at the venue, wearing shades and starting to shake a wee bit.

100% enthusiasm for the venue for the wedding in a fortnight's time.  Gorgeous!

1 Blank stare given to us when we asked whether it was possible for us to buy breakfast......

0 - packets of crisps or sweeties in the car glove boxes....- we checked.

10.30 - the time I gave up trying to feel normal and confessed that I felt like total shit and needed to go home.

1 - Mad Woman From Kilmarnock who volunteered to drive me to  Wemyss Bay (I loves her)

3 - scrambled egg rolls purchased from the ferry cafe.

1pm - time I rolled through the front door, dropped my case and headed quietly for the painkillers

24 - hours until we are in London.  I sure hope I fecking feel better than this for our flight tomorrow at 10am. *help me face*

What about you lot?

8 Oct 2010

Hestia and Tertarus ;-)

So, it's been a very busy week!

Went to see Juno on Sunday - not seen her for AGES - and other than the odd 'you never phone me and I'm sitting here alone' comment, it all went rather well.

On Monday I went to Glasgow to meet up with a fellow Tarotist - just for an hour, but very worthwhile indeed.

On Tuesday, at last, I got the new ring resized - will put up a picture of it.  And Sonshine, Nibbles and I wended our weary way home to the island.

Wednesday - cleaning operations commenced.  Really, I say this EVERY time Tertarus is due home, but I MUST become a bit more domesticated.  Even *I* get frustrated by the piles of crap left around.  I am blaming my creative gene, but surely there must be creative and TIDY people out there?!  If there are, bugger off, it's MY excuse and I'm sticking to it.

Thursday - the Day of Tertarus's return.  The house is still a midden.  I am now nearly 3 veg boxes behind and the flies in the kitchen are assuming Old Testament proportions.  I have the Vapona out on an hourly basis and dumped my recycling bin out on the back step.

We get the call from Tertarus - Glasgow Airport for 6pm.

I do a quick calculation - I need to be on the 4pm ferry.  I have not hoovered the stairs nor drained the fetid mush out of the salad drawer in the bottom of the fridge.

Sonshine then decides to make a volcano.  In the kitchen.  With Vinegar.  And Bicarbonate of Soda. 

What a fugging mess. 

I was so exasperated that I could not even swear at him - just blinked mutely at the hitherto gleaming work surfaces and the white powdery clouds on the carpet tiles.

I clean and clean and clean and still there is something that needs doing.....I fling Sonshine into the car and we bolt for the ferry.  I have no jacket - but does not matter - weather is lovely.  I roll down window to hand over ferry tix.  Nae purse.  Nae Ferry Tickets.  Nae Chance of getting on.  As the cars start to board, I do a u-turn and zoom home to get the offending items.

Of course, the ferry waits for No Man (sometimes the ambulance though) and I had some more time to clean.  But I HAD to catch the 4.45pm boat or I would be completely fucked.

We did catch it, of course.  And hurtled our way up the M8 to the airport, checking my watch every 5 minutes and listening to Sonshine twittering away about dinosaurs drinking coffee and other such crap. I feigned interest convincingly and pulled into the airport.

Now, while we may be happy to punch you in the face if you try to blow up our airport - even if you are on fire - we are VERY unhappy about what has been done to our airport subsequently.  Roads closed, shuffled, altered...new lanes....there's a new drop off point every time I go.  Sonsine and I found ourselves corralled in an outside car park.  I could not be fagged going around again and we just parked and legged it to the terminal building.

It's a small airport really and within minutes of arriving in the international arrivals hall, my phone rang.  Tertarus had just picked up his case and could see us.....swear to God, Sonshine DID pee his pants when he saw his dad trugging his case along the corridor.

They threw themselves at each other.  I got a peck on the cheek.  Sonshine and he set about a wildly animated conversation and I sank into the background.  Surplus to requirements again.  I heaved a sigh of relief and wondered what his initial domestic inspection would uncover when we get home.

I realise with sinking heart that I've left the recycling bin, with its colony of flies sitting on the back step.  Oh well, too late to do anything about it now.  And we all head for the car and home......

PS - do not google 'calmac pix' with your son leaning over your shoulder.  I cannot BEGIN to tell you what pops up on page 3 of google images, but it's got bugger all to do with Caledonian MacBrayne's boats *shocked face*

2 Oct 2010

Hestia loves.....Dot Animation

With thanks to @beckintl on Twitter for the link to this lovely little bit of animation:

I particularly love the bumblebee flying over the pencil shavings.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend.

Ali x

Hestias week in numbers

24 - The number of white lines I painted on Sunday afternoon on to West Island Way waymarker signs to help my friends J & M get tidied up for M's holiday with their daughter.

1 - The number of times I told M that if he criticised my white lines in any way, shape or form, I'd toe the paintbrush right up his arse. 

Of course, I didn't REALLY say that at all.  But I thought the thought REALLY hard to myself whenever he came up to check on the standard of my work......I think my expression might have spoken a thousand words that ended with the sentiment of having a paintbrush inserted in an exit... ;-D

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