Tuesday, April 04, 2006


Kelly tagged me (again with the problem with the links, but she is on the sidebar). I am a dutiful blogging-friend so I have obliged.

What were you doing 10 years ago?

Ten years ago I was nearly fourteen. I was probably waking up every morning and telling the nearest person that it was only twenty days until my birthday.

I was living in Harpenden, Hertfordshire. In the room with the bay window that had a sill on which you could sit and read a book. There were house martins nesting outside my window. I went to school, walking ten minutes to get on the bus to travel half an hour to get there. My uniform was a navy skirt, light blue shirt and navy blue jumper. Black shoes, and in winter, black tights.

I was shy but had very outgoing friends who I liked. I played in an orchestra around the corner from my house every Monday, had my cello lessons on Tuesdays, drama after school on Fridays. I think at that point I ran in the cross country team, although I imagine that fizzled out soon after.

Still skinny at that point, freckly, with permanently messy hair. I still have the messy hair, but my freckles only come out in summer. Not so much with the rake-like skinniness, not anymore.

I used to sing, but it was with my older sister, Alex, who plays guitar. We used to sing 'Everybody's Talking', 'Killing Me Softly' and 'April Come She Will'. Other ones as well, always in harmony.

I don't remember much from that age, apart from feeling shy a lot. It seems such a long time ago.

What were you doing 5 years ago?

Five years ago it was April 4th, 2001. I was in Australia, just about to turn nineteen. I travelled with two girls: Jenny and Helen. Helen I knew from school and had accidentally agreed to travel with after A-levels. Jenny had called me up out of the blue about two months before Helen and I were due to depart, to go to South East Asia, Australia, New Zealand and the Cook Islands. After a brief conversation that, I seem to recall, involved the possiblility of us being hookers at King's Cross in order to fund gap year activities, I invited her to join us. She accepted. "Are you sure you don't mind?" she asked. "Of course not!" I replied. "The more the merrier!"

Well, it didn't quite turn out that way. What ended up happening was both Jenny and I were irritated by Helen in a kind of shocked, I cannot believe you just said that to me in public sort of a way, and have been best friends ever since. Helen had a good time, I think, but a very different time.

Helen and I no longer speak.

Anyway. Five years ago we were in Cairns and doing a dive course on the Great Barrier Reef. We decided to do the six day Advanced Padi Course, and stay out on the live-aboard boat for that time. Diving was so very wonderful. It is, in fact, difficult to talk about diving without using clichés. Oh, it's like flying! Oh, the fish! Oh, the coral! It is as good as that, though. The least fun part was the night dive. Standing on the dark boat, fully-attired and flippered, staring into the water which was all lit up by a huge beam of light from underneath the boats. The fish, attracted by the light, flock towards it in their hundreds. Then, attracted by the fish...

"Are they...? Is that a...?"

"Yeah, mate, that's a shark! In we go!"

Um, alright then. I heard they were, you know, a bit dangerous. I usually avoid them, on a day to day basis. But, hey, you're the big strapping Australian! You know best!

As a general rule I loved the diving. When we weren't on the boat we stayed in a hostel, which was great except that the owner kept trying to undo my bikini top in the swimming pool.

I would love to be there now. I don't mean in that swimming pool, with that owner, although now maybe I'm more assertive and so would just elbow him sharply in the ribs and/or testicles. No, I mean I would love to be in Australia. With my best friend. Having fun.

What were you doing 1 year ago?

Trying to get over a broken heart. Trying to get over depression. Trying to work out where I wanted to go with my singing. Living at home with my parents and commuting to London everyday. Looking forward to my twenty-third birthday. Or trying to.

5 Snacks you enjoy:

Rice cakes with humous and pesto
Brannigan's Beef and Mustard crisps
Chocolate hobnob biscuits
Salt and vinegar Snack a Jacks (rice cakes)

5 Songs (you think) you know by heart:

My Funny Valentine
Angel Eyes
America (Simon and Garfunkel)
The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air rap (because I'm massively cool)

5 things you would do with a LOT of money:

Set up my own studio and record label
Pay off the debts of my family and anyone who was nice to me
Donate to lots of charities
Buy shoes shoes lots of shoes
Buy Hugh Jackman and keep him as my sex slave

5 Things you would never wear:

Peaked woollen caps
Half tops
Things without bra-support
Once I saw a girl wearing Kappa tracksuit trousers and snakeskin high heels. I would never wear that.
Nasty things. It's tricky to narrow down, really.

5 Things you should have never worn:

Cycling shorts
High heeled jelly shoes
Pink shell suit
Tapered jeans
Half top/hotpants combination

5 Things you enjoy doing:


5 Bad Habits you have:

Being anxious
Drinking too much coffee
Spending money on things I don't need (I very very nearly bought the Charmed series six box set last night for £45. I don't need that and will not succumb. Except that I do and I will.)
Loving Charmed too much

5 People you would like to do this:

Everyone. I know this is cheating, but my server won't let me create links within words and I am too tired and oh, whatever.

Just quickly:

Last night's CBT was good except that I had a panic attack at the beginning. She said that this was to do with facing my fears, and being confronted with the things I am really struggling with. I think she's right. I feel like I am getting closer to being brave enough to make the changes I want to make in my life. This sounds all a bit cryptic and mysterious, but it's not. Nor is it actually as exciting as it sounds.

Also, I hope you're having a nice day today. It is sunny here and I am going to make Important Phonecalls. I also need to work out what to do for my birthday, which is April 24th. I will be twenty-four years old. Please suggest things.

Perhaps things will start changing. Perhaps today.


Blogger Dancinfairy said...

Now this is a story all about how, my life got flip turned upside down, and I'd like to take a minute.......

Dammit that will be going round in my head all day!

You had a pink shell suit too. That makes me feel a little better :o)

I say get resonated on your birthday but I guess you are looking for more specific suggestions!

12:49 pm

Blogger Miss Devylish said...

Birthday suggestions:
Sing loudly in public - maybe on the tube (is that what you call it?) or just walking down the street. And when ppl look at you funny tell them it's your birthday and you can do anydamnthing you please, thank you very much.

Eat candy all day, for breakfast/lunch/dinner - cuz you can. I might prefer M&M's, the peanut kind cuz hey, protein.

Sleep in.. til like 1.

Then go have a nap in the park and lie in the sun.

Buy some new shoes! And clothes! And music! And hell, Hugh Jackman if you must.. but I would recommend the Patrick Dempsey or the Jake Gyllenhall first or maybe some Ed Norton or Matthew McConnehay or Josh Hartnett.. just sayin..

This does make you a Taurus, does it not..? No wonder I like you.. polar opposites.. love it!

11:06 pm

Blogger Miss Devylish said...

Crap.. it's not Taurus is it.. ? Dang.. I was close.

11:06 pm

Blogger Steve said...

Don't know about everything else. Especially childhood memories. It actually quite worries me about how little I can remember about my childhood. So much for the autobiography!

BUT! I can give you 5 songs I know by heart. Don't worry, I'm not going to give you full lyrics! But all can be played and sang . . .

1. My, My, Hey, Hey (Out of the Blue) (Neil Young)
2. Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots pt. 1 (The Flaming Lips)
3. She Don't Use Jelly (The Flaming Lips)
4. Wish you Were Here (Pink Floyd)
aaaaand %. The Boxer (Simon and Garfunkel).

Er . . . funky.

11:30 pm

Blogger Steve said...

Er . . . that % should have been a 5. But I'm sure you could have worked that out.

Or BISUCHWTO as I'm now going to say.

11:32 pm

Anonymous Adrian said...

I used to know the whole "Ice Ice Baby" rap. Not quite as cool as the fresh prince. Although I think I lost all creditability when I admitted to having seen the Vanilla Ice movie.

I shudder to ask what High heeled jelly shoes are but I'm imagining you walking around on two shoes made of Jelly and that doesn't seem very practical.

Also surely cycling shorts are ok ... like if you are cycling?

My stock standard birthday approach is to phone a bar and book a reserved area. Then to invite everyone I know. And everyone I don't know. That works out quite well although combines badly if everyone buys you vodka jelly.

9:28 am

Blogger Léonie said...

DF - My shell suit was fluorescent. Pink. It was... very fetching. I think resonation on my birthday is a given. The question is: where and with whom?

Miss D - Awesome suggestions! Singing on the tube (yes, that is what we call it!) is a great idea. All of it is perfect. Assuming there'll be sun for lying in the park under is dangerous, though. This is England, after all. I love your suggestions, though. It would be a happy day. Especially if I could have Hugh Jackman AND Jake Gyllenhall.
And you're right, I am a taurus...

Steve - Good selection of songs to know. Out of those I reckon I know The Boxer by heart, as well. We could have a sing-along-a-Simon and Garfunkel if you like?

Adrian - Jelly shoes are like those shoes that children have for going in the sea with. Type 'jelly shoes' into Google images and you will get a picture. They were like them, but bigger and with heels. I am not proud. Well, I am about as proud as you are for knowing the Ice ice Baby rap. So that would be 'actually secretly very', then.

12:05 pm

Anonymous Adrian said...

So like this, but with heels. That's something quite special. And far better than my other guess which was closer to those big healed stripper shoes made from perspex. Not that I'm saying you are a stripper, it was just wear my mind after shoes made out of jelly. My mind goes strange places.

I'm glad you said 'actually secretly very', as it means someone else thinks the Ice Ice Baby wrap is cool. You do think it's cool right, it's not just me.

1:54 pm

Blogger Jonathan said...

Here is the link to my list:


As for what to do on your birthday:
Cake and guinness always work for me. Not neccesarily at the same time, though.

4:28 pm

Blogger Jonathan said...

Oh, just realized that it will be your "magic" birthday, when your age matches the date of the day you were born. You will need to do something more than just cake and guinness...hmm, will have to get back to you on this...

4:39 pm

Anonymous Anonymous said...

im also guilty of pink shellsuitness.

is there really a vanilla ice film...?

7:41 pm

Blogger Huw said...

Blogger has oft irrationally given me trouble with linking in posts (making vast bits of text disappear, or link destinations being a link I wanted at an earlier point), but I found that - in case you haven't tried - by clicking the 'Edit html' tab on the compose screen, you can usually tweak blogger into doing your bidding.

You love it when I go all geeky.

9:57 pm

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4:55 pm


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