Posts Tagged ‘restaurants’

I’d like to thank…

A rather surprising thing happened to me. I was nominated for another blogging award. A ‘Very Inspiring Blogger’ award. How exciting is that? My half-demented, undirected ramblings have been inspiring to someone?! So, channelling my inner Bjork… I am a grateful.. grapefruit.

Thanks to David McGowan firstly, for nominating me. He’s written a very good book calledThe Hunter Inside, and his blog is great for tips on writing (real writing, not random anecdotes, like mine…).

So the rules are that I have to tell David (everyone) seven things about myself. Ok, I’ll try not to repeat the ones I did last time.

1. I’m very particular about which mug my tea is in. I like a big mug but the sides shouldn’t be slanting in or out or anything. I like a straight-sided big-than-your-average mug. With a handle I can get all my fingers into. None of this curly fancy nonsense, that you can only get your first two fingers into. All fingers in the handle and a large, solidly built mug, please. It makes it taste better.

2. Midway through last week (my exam week), I stopped brushing my hair. I haven’t started again yet.

3. In a low point last week, I started eating cake decorations, specifically small sugar hearts and edible red carnation petals. That was a time I’d rather forget.

4. I lost my trainers about two weeks ago and have been too lazy to look for them. (See why I gave myself that name now? LazyLauraMaisey?) I also lost my bank card a few days ago and am sure it will ‘turn up’.

5. I make a lot of my own cake ingredient stuff. Today’s banana bread has homemade butter, homemade buttermilk and homemade vanilla extract in it.

6. I have old-lady hands. Because I work in a deli and sometimes in the kitchen, I’m constantly washing up, using cleaning spray/wipes, burning myself, ripping my fingers apart on the clingfilm thing etc. So I spend at least an hour a day moisturising my hands. I then wash some dishes and it comes off. So I reapply it. Then I make some coffees and it comes off, so I reapply it. Then I’m taking/giving money so it comes off. So I reapply it. Etc etc.

7. I just ate a muffin.

Now I need to nominate 15 blogs that I find inspiring.

1. Marion Retires – Inspiring because… She makes me envy her fantastic life. Given that I’m 27 years old and envying someone in their retirement (traditionally a slightly more boring part of life, the immediate associations being gardening and knitting), she’s clearly got it right. She’s fantastic, her blog is fantastic. If I retire as successfully as her, I’ll be pretty pleased.

2. lifeinthedrivethru – Inspiring because… He handles the public so well. Then blogs his real thoughts. It’s like reading my own thoughts sometimes! It’s hilarious.

3. , – Inspiring because… They’re such beautiful pictures. This is my favourite recent one –Lucile Prache

4. A Historic Virginia Plantation – Inspiring because… Again the photos are beautiful. I like reading the posts and imagining a life of such grandeur for myself.

5. Liberty Books Blog – Inspiring because… It’s about people who use literature to try and effect positive change. Literature and positive change are two of my favourite things.

6. Grumpy Comments – Inspiring because… He’s pretty hilarious. His encounter at the hairdresser’s was fantastic.

7. Vicky… the Northern Chicky – Inspiring because… well, the title of the blog says it all = “Wacky Diary of Adventures Moving to Myrtle Beach (or Cape Cod) with 5 Kids!”

8. Go Bake Yourself – Inspiring because… If I’m feeling uninspired in the kitchen, I browse around and get inspiration. This cherry chocolate cheesecake, for example, sounds fabulous.

9. Bucket List Publications – Inspiring because… it is definitely NOT boring! Skydiving, biplaning… It’s all going on here.

10. The Better Man Project – Inspiring because… “The world needs better men. This blog is simply my journey to becoming a better man every day and the lessons I learn along the way.”

11. – Inspiring because… I like looking at pretty pictures. This blog has pretty pictures.

12. Nerdy After Thirty – Inspiring because… It is well written and honest and good fun.

13. Just Homemade – Inspiring because… I love homemade.

14. From Scratch Club – Inspiring because… Similar to Go Bake Yourself. I come here when I’m feeling uninspired in the kitchen.

15. David McGowan – I don’t know whether this is the conventional thing to do but I’m going to nominate the person who nominated me, because he is inspiring too.

A book and free time

I was away on holiday recently. It was nice. There was sun (sometimes), a swimming pool, a lovely group of people and some children to liven the mood, lots of water parks, beaches, shops, restaurants. All the stuff that you do for fun on holiday.

Except that I didn’t really need any of those things. I just need a good book and to not have anything to do. I’m quite self conscious about my type of fun, as it’s a bit antisocial and doesn’t involve screaming and laughing and splashing around in cold water, playing water polo or something. It doesn’t make me look like much fun.

While the others ran toward the oncoming waves and squealed and ran back when the freezing water hit them, and laughed together, I sat on a towel with a copy of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short stories and had the time of my life. I don’t hate running in and out of the water, it’s quite good fun sometimes. I also like sitting in a cafe with an espresso (at no other time in my life do I drink espressos, in fact I really dislike the taste of coffee. I think I do it in cafes when I’m in public to feel grown up). I like taking a lovely walk down the twisty roads, seeing the trees and rosemary bushes and wildlife. All these things I like doing. But if I’m totally, truly honest with myself, I don’t actually need any of those things. I just need a good book and a place to sit and to have nothing on my mind (hence, I did zero studying on holiday…).

So they ran in and out of the water, shivered, laughed, played together. I took photos from my vantage point on the towel and read the Pat Hobby stories. It’s not that I don’t like people, but I spend the whole year being force-fed big fat textbooks and cases and statutes and no time for choosing something nice to read. So when I’m away from the textbooks, that’s what I most want to do.

Until recently, I would just wait and read later and spend more time doing group things, things that are fun together. But I read a book about being honest with yourself about the things you find fun and that’s what I find fun.

I’m not about to forgo hot air balloon rides over the desert or mountain trekking in exotic places, in the name of reading books, because that’s ‘my’ type of fun! I’d like to think I still do exciting things, but in a more everyday way, I’d just like a book and free time please.

P.S. 15 days till first exam. Today’s revision topic is Constitution in Equity and Trusts Law.

“P. S. B.”

Imagine the scene.

It’s lunchtime. You’re in a restaurant with a friend, chatting happily. The waitress brings you a menu. It’s exciting, what to have, what to have? The choice is immense. The steak? The chicken? The fish? O no!
Finally, you settle on something which looks quite nice. A goat’s cheese salad. Mmm. You read the list of ingredients, getting exciting. “A goat’s cheese salad,” it says, “with beetroot, roasted red pepper, “P.S.B”, toasted seeds and baby gem.”
And your world falls apart. “P.S.B.”? What can this mean? You like to think of yourself as a bit of a connoisseur when it comes to food. You eat out quite a bit, enjoy cooking. What is this “P.S.B.” of which they speak?
It’s written like that too. With quotation marks around it and full stops inbetween each letter. And in capitals. Like it’s screaming at you. “P”! “S”! “B”! It becomes a chant in your mind, “P. S. B! P. S. B! P. S. B! P. S. B!”
What is it? Per Spoon and Bowl? Per Serving Bitesize? Passed Sell By? Pre Supper Binge? Please Stop Biting? Please Start Biting?

In your panic, you don’t notice the arrival of the waitress to take your order. Your friend has already ordered and they are both looking at you, the silence grows and it’s clear something is wrong.
Quietly you ask the waitress, as there’s nothing else you can do, “Erm, what’s P. S. B.?”
She looks at you as though speaking to an old deranged person who can’t understand where ‘outside’ is.
“Purple sprouting broccoli,” and it’s clear she’s also saying silently, “Obviously.”
“O, I’ll just have that then, yeh, the goat’s cheese salad please,” you say hurriedly and she departs.

“P. S. B.”! Has the world gone insane? Since when did purple sprouting broccoli have it’s own acronym? As though it’s so universally recognised that it’s ok to put it on menus now because it won’t need explaining. As if it’s up there with FIFA and OPEC in being letters that most people are familiar with.
“P. S. B.”…. Ridiculous.