Tuesday, 30 July 2013


I should be packing, but instead I spent the morning sewing giraffe buttons onto my new blouse, and then attempting to take a half decent self portrait.

The buttons were a success. The portraits less so.

Sadly I only noticed that the button band was slightly off centre when I had complete the blouse....but then I feel slightly off-centre most of the time, so it works on some level.

Our evening stroll was post rain-storm last night, which enabled some rainbow spotting.....I tried in earnest to take a shot resembling a famous album cover, anyone get it?

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Feats of engineering.

Sunday mornings as a child often involved curling up on the sofa watching TV. Of course, for the most part this consisted of cartoons, but despite never been much of a regular sports fan, I remember loving Transworld Sport. This show somehow held my interest with its mix of weird and wacky events and brief clips of sporting madness. And today's event definitely fit that bill. After work I nipped over the river to watch the first few flights of the Redbull Ottawa Flugtag 2013. Of those I witnessed, the Gameboy was definitely the most successful flier - although it also nearly blew off the staging area when a sneaky gust of wind caught it side on. 

As usual at these events, for me it was the efforts put into the costumes and the aesthetics of the machines which were the most impressive. I was particularly fond of the Yoshi and Sock-monkey models, and despite a slightly menacing cyclist the ET effort was great too. (I should have taken a video of it in action, the guy wrapped up in the blanket had E.T waving and blowing kisses at the crowd). Much like Comicon earlier in the year, Costume-wise it seems like all these events serve as good excuses for people to get into something skimpy and/or cross-dress. The Eagle-fliers (top left) were very keen to show off their bows and arrows!

I didn't stay long as it was ridiculously busy and shade was hard to come by, but it was nice to see the event in action. And the crowd were definitely very supportive as flight after flight nose-dived into the water. Apparently the winning flight made it 129 feet smashing the Canadian record, there are photos and more details on the Flugtag website.

So, did I return home inspired to build my own flying machine and take to the air? Well despite my prior experience (well, that one flying lesson last year), I didn't immediately reach for hammer and nails. Nope, it was boiled egg and sausage meat engineering for me this evening....far safer, and the results are yummy!

I miss Scotch Eggs, Sausage Rolls and Cornish Pasties almost as much as I miss Fish and Chips, so I was very pleased with how these came out.

The recipe is from A Perfect Day for a Picnic , and most of these are for the Cookbook book club at work tomorrow.....if I don't scoff them before bed tonight that is.

Night all. x

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Commoon misconception.

It is a common misconception....

....that there is a man on the moon...

....in fact there is a giant song sparrow, who perches and serenades the stars with his slightly flat rendition of David Bowie's Space Oddity.

So now you know.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Are you dancing?

I have never been much of a public dancer (*), I think I can count on one hand the times I've danced in front of other people. Most memorably for me was the occasion at a family wedding many moons ago. I found myself so inspired by a Billy Joel track (probably Uptown Girl), that I managed to mash-up Celtic Sword Dancing and The Robot, to hideous effect. (I can only hope that I am the only one that remembers this....and I am eternally grateful that back then video-cameras were few and far between).

In recent years, only the imbibing of copious amounts of alcohol have led to more than a mere foot tap, and then I have found myself looking down and wondering whose legs those are jiggling about so ridiculously, before regaining self-control and retreating to the safety of wallflower status once again.

It may be surprising to learn then, that I LOVE to dance, and behind the safety of closed doors and drawn blinds, I will boogie away on my own for hours at a time. Particularly on overcast or rainy days, I like nothing more that to push my spinning wheel to one side, stick on ELO at full blast, and then I twist, I Charleston, I fling out moves from Saturday Night Fever - and I absolutely LOVE it. And as I get older, I find this seeping out into public more and more.

This week has been a prime example, as in our fourth summer in Ottawa, we have finally headed to Bluesfest.
Belle and Sebastian - dreaming of horses.
Belle and Sebastian's enthusiasm and energy was infectious last Saturday, and I found myself bobbing, tapping and I may even have snuck in a little shimmy at one point. Now to the outside observer, I may still have appeared to be the Brandy Snap that my dear brother-in-law thinks of me as - refusing to let go with anything like wild abandon. But for me, this was a novel experience - movement, in public!

My dance-based week continued last night at the Dusk Dances in Strathcona Park. This is the 3rd year they've run, and I've been every year, and thoroughly enjoyed it. This is dance as art rather than as social activity, so I can't say that I picked up many moves to add to my limited repertoire, but the fun and joy the dancers showed is encouraging nonetheless.


There were spooky marionette brides, moonlight-projection based pieces with werewolf overtones, and an emotional love story told with the aid of bathing-suits, showers and sliding about on slippy wet plastic sheets.
If you're in the area, there are still performances tonight and tomorrow, it is pay-what-you-can, and a fab way to spend a summers evening in the park.

So tonight, it is back to Bluesfest, this time for Bjork. Not sure whether that will be a dance-inducing performance or not to be honest. In fact, maybe some of the performances last night might lend themselves to her music after-all. Not sure I can pull of Marionette-bride-with-multiple-wavy-arms all by myself . . . but if I do, i'll be making sure that there are still no video-cameras to capture the moment for prosperity!

(*) Yes, I have decided to label myself as a non-public dancer, as opposed to a private dancer. Tina Turner has a lot to answer for.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Random encounters....

A young Harry Potter-a-like child just ran up to us while we were walking Jasper, holding out a scrap of paper with a badge scrawled on it in felt-tip (on second thoughts, maybe it was psychic paper and that's what I wanted to see!).

He claimed to be a New York cop who needed to confiscate our dog for being too ridiculously cute.

When I challenged the authority of a New York cop in Ottawa, he ran back to his friend who was watching us with binoculars from a safe distance, shouting " we got on the wrong plane, we aren't in New York".

Life is good.