The Reality of Procrastinating

ID-10080260Ridley: I wouldn’t watch much television to be honest. When I say this, I do watch shows, but it would be more on netflix when I have nothing else pressing, rather than just randomly sitting down in front of the television every night. However, Sundays can often be my day to watch what I call ‘car crash television’, I get sucked into watching reality shows that teach me nothing, in fact my precious (and rapidly dwindling by the year) brain cells probably slowly decay the longer I sit there. It can’t be helped though, sometimes it’s like I can’t look away, or close my gaping mouth. I’m pretty certain I’m not the only one, as these shows are still on and seem extremely popular. So I said I’d share some of my favourites (as you do).

Deadliest Catchdownload

Basically this show follows fishermen on the Bering Sea catching king crabs. Most of my friends and family think each episode looks identical to the next one. There’s the sea, crabs and a boat, and they keep catching the crabs or they don’t. But to be honest, I find this show quite addictive. images (1)I have favourite Captains and I love how the camera skips from boat to boat, seeing how they’re each getting on with their haul, it’s quite unpredictable (and dangerous), you never know what the sea is going to do.

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Of all the mad shows I watch, this is my all time favourite. It’s about this Louisiana bayo family who have made it big, they’re millionaires from making duck calls for hunters. It’s the ultimate rags-to-riches story, where their business was started in the family shed. They are the most unconventional company ever, where the whole extended family, and most of their neighbourhood, has been employed by the business. The antics and the madness they get up to often have me in stitches. Uncle Si is my favourite of the family, the lines that randomly come out of him are just classic.duck-dynasty-my-favorite-show-aside-from-spongebob54606214202188601_Iu9kkqCp_cduck-dynasty8

All the Inks, from L.A Ink, Miami Ink, London Ink, NY ink.

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I watch all the ink shows, basically its a reality show where people get tattoos from absolutely epic artists. I’ve always wished I looked like Kat Von D, she’s very cool.kat-von-d-photos

I love the display of artistic talent and the unusual images that people decide to get. I also come away with a massive desire to get a tattoo myself, but I can never decide on an image, that, and I usually like to avoid pain – I’m not a fan.

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This is another show a bit like Deadliest Catch, where the job is really dangerous. I think I like these as I can’t imagine myself ever having enough courage to be able to this type of work myself, or how you’d mentally be able to go about doing it. Night time driving, blizzards, freezing temperatures and roads literally made of ice, not to mention the massive expensive tons of gear you’re huge truck is transporting from one town to the next.download (1) Anything can happen, and does!

Here Comes Honey Boo Boo (which is an off shoot of Toddlers & Tiaras)Here_Comes_Honey_BooBoo_title_card

These shows, I just watch them with my mouth hanging open and I randomly shake my head. Toddlers and Tiaras is basically all these kids who do pageants and try to win titles by dressing up to the nines with make up, glitzy dresses, swim wear and costumes.Toddlers-Tiaras-Moms-Get-Makeover-on-The-Anderson-Cooper-Show-2

I was originally going to say we don’t really have these sort of events in Ireland, but actually the first ever one was held last weekend. Mind, it’s not nearly as popular here as it is in the U.S.

Now, as one of the kids who was a star in T&T, Honey Boo Boo obviously caught a producers eye somewhere along the way with her sassiness, so she and her family got their own spin off show.tumblr_m4p59qtz9m1rph6hnA3w9UGhCUAA6PtE-550x305

I think most of her relatives (and herself) are all hyped up on sugar (actually more than likely as they drink this juice, called Go Go Juice, which is made up of Mountain Dew and Red Bull! My heart is just racing thinking about it). It’s just mental to watch them.

Now you know what Ridley does when she’s feeling bored and rebelling against doing any actual work. You know you all do it! 😀 Amazing that I managed to do a blog post about the things that almost prevented me from doing the post in the first place! Teehee.

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Take to the Streets

Down by the Luas Lines in Dublin

Down by the Luas Lines in Dublin

Latimer: Recently I’ve been taking a lot of notice of street art. To the point where, as I walk down the street and come face-to-face with an empty wall, I start to daydream about what maybe I could put there…

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I imagine images weaving across the concrete. And I start to think, leaning back and getting some perspective on the wall – ‘That would be fun!’

My daydream then takes me to the street at night-time, wearing dark clothes and carrying a bag of spray-paint cans. I’m going to unfold my masterpiece image. I’m going to fix it to the wall, by climbing a steep rickety old ladder that stretches up six floors to the roof. And I’m not afraid to do it (this would never happen, I’d be crying if I had to climb a ladder).

I spray-paint the stencil. I scramble down the ladder and race across the road.

Girl in an egg, Barcelona

Girl in an egg, Barcelona

No police catch me.

I admire my mural, and then, I fade into the darkness like a thief in the night. A wispy shadowy creature of the witching hour; in the morning people will pass the image, wondering – who did that? How’d they do that? And I’ll pass by, smile a secret smile, and walk on.

Then my daydream ends with the harsh whack from the reality stick. I don’t go down that street at night-time, because it’s too dark and could be full of people baying for my blood; like gangs of New York.

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I don’t dress in all black, because if I remember correctly I don’t have a black hat and I threw out those black jeans the other day. Where would I find the stencil? That’s a big wall, the perspective would be too much; I mean drawing on an A3 page is the most I’ve ever done. And I’ve never made a stencil…

No. I’d get caught! Definitely; if anyone would I would. The police would catch me. I’d get in trouble.

It's too risky!!

It’s too risky!!

Where do you get the spray paint anyway… is it expensive… etc. etc.

Yup, the dream fades pretty fast.

So, I’m left as a voyeur on the street art of others. I like the secret pictures and I like the mysterious people that flit in the night, spicing up the streets with quirky images. Their work waves at me as I pass the streets, from time-to-time, and I smile thinking, “Well, hello there piece of art!” Like it’s a secret discovery, belonging to just me and the street.

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After you see one, as with all things, a door opens and suddenly they’re everywhere. It used to be a Dublin thing, now it’s a world thing. The images from people I’ll never know, waving across countries at me, a little Latimer they’ll never know.

Here are some I found in Barcelona.

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Keep an eye out on whatever streets you’re walking! There are cool secret artists out there! Thank you for sharing your art!

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I’m not sure who the artists are, so if anyone knows, drop us a message and we’ll tag the photos etc!

Chillin’ at Court

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Latimer: For as long as I can remember, I wanted to go to Hampton Court.

But, I kept forgetting/never knew, what it was called, so I’d get really frustrated trying to explain to people where it was I wanted to go.

“I’d love to go to Henry VIII’s Palace… you know with the,” cue my distant expression, “with the red-brick gatehouse.”

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I would stare expectantly at the person and they would stare back rightly confused. I would get frustrated, thinking everyone should know what I meant and give me the name of said building (so I could forever remember it and not look like a fool every time I said I wanted to visit it!).

This has been the way it’s been for me for years. But finally I realised it was Hampton Court I wanted to visit.

It’s in London, so when Ridley and I went there, I just had to go!

Hampton Court is epic and after being stuck in a queue for every which-way-thing in London, it was surprisingly low on visitors, which probably made the experience all the better. We had an ice-cream on the lawn, enjoyed the sun and stared in wonderment at the gorgeousness that is the Court.

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While there, Ridley got real bohemian. She headed over to a tree, sat down, pulled out a notebook and pen, and with a big smile said –

“Let’s do book-work!”

I shuffled over to the tree, thinking this was a very quaint idea; we’d be like Jane Austen or something. A minute later I leaped up. “There’re ants crawling all over the tree! I hate nature -!”

Ridley jumped up, screaming, her dream of book-work in the park destroyed by nature. Deflated we gave up and headed into the Palace, letting the magic of Hampton Court wash over us.

If anyone watches/reads Game of Thrones, Robert Baratheon reminds me of Henry VIII. I think that might be intentional – George R. R. Martin draws from history right? Well, the banquet hall has Baratheon stamped all over it – it’s so cool!

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In my head I was saying, ‘ours is the fury’! over and over again, until I annoyed myself!

Ours is the Fury!... or something.. ha!

Ours is the Fury!… or something.. ha!

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Apparently the tapestries that hang in the hall are made of gold and silver thread.

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Rich people back then got tapestries as a show of wealth, because of the cost involved in making them and the materials used. Henry VIII amassed tapestries like celebrities today buy diamond encrusted iPhones and fancy cars. Tapestries were the flash accessory of the day, and Henry VIII had the largest collection. The tapestries aren’t as bright now as they were in his day, but they are still impressive!

Throughout our holiday we were asking each other the question of – ‘what would you do if you fell back in time?’ Our hypothesis started out with the notion that we’d be gods! We’d know everything.

But, Dara O’Briain sums up the truth of what would happen…

Ridley struggled to read the tiny script writing on a massive charter in Hampton Court. Waving her hand she moaned; “And I wouldn’t even be able to read!”

Even if we could read it wouldn’t be written in the same English as it is today – we would probably not even understand what people were saying to us. That old adage by Wittgenstein that; “If a lion could talk, we would not understand him,” because his frame of reference would be so different to ours.

So, the portal that opens sucking me and Ridley into the past becomes more and more dangerous! I think our science backgrounds would also lead to us being burnt as witches!

We did conclude, on our travels, that it would not be good to get sucked back in time and end up in Edinburgh. It was hit by ‘plague’ (we never learned which plague) 11 times. We also would not have survived the closes, with people tossing buckets of waste down the narrow streets… or having to drink beer because the water was so dangerously full of bacteria (from the waste flowing down into the lake and therefore the drinking water).

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Walking around the Court is almost like walking through time (the safer version of it). You half expect to turn a corner and see a man in tights, a grey curly wig, heels and a fancy velvet jacket…

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Funnily enough, that did actually happen at one point. He was sitting talking to a 1700’s era woman.

We (the tourists) all walked past them, listening in on the conversation, confused as to whether they were in-character or not and nobody talking to them to find out.

We all kept a safe distance; blinking and straining inward to listen to them, but glancing to each other and giving a nervous laugh, like we were all thinking, ‘is this a mass hallucination?! Can you see them too?!’

We left the palace, happier for having been there! If you’re in need of an oasis of calm in London, head to Court!

Book Addicts

Read-a-thon Tackle Your TBR

We just want to thank Laura over at Colorimetry and Tressa at Tressa’s Wishful Endings for letting us take part in their Read-a-thon! Get on over there and check these ladies out, that have some fantastic posts up!

We also have a four ebook giveaway for Legend Unleashed and an interview on Colorimetry, pop on over and say hi to Laura and enter the rafflecopter to win one of them!

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A book addict, are you one? We know we are!!

Everyone gets swept away by something, a novel, a movie, a person. Your imagination and your emotions are ensnared. Your heart is like a jack-hammer in your chest and your thoughts whizz by barely half-formed.

For us, it’s always been a series of books that affects us like this, though the occasional box set of a television series or Asian drama has seized us in the same way. You know that feeling when you become so immersed in this pretend new world, that if you’re jerked back into your own reality, you resent it? It’s just a fantastic feeling, isn’t it? To find something that you can become so captivated by it, that you forget you’re not actually out on the briny sea or or staring deeply into the leading man’s eyes.

Nothing else really matters; when dinner is on the table, you don’t want to stop reading to eat it, when your eyes begin to droop, you brand them traitors. You just wish you could just read faster, to find out what happens next, to know if the heroine lives or dies, if the couple end up kissing or if the bad guy wins. But there are also those other, conflicting feelings. You want to know how it ends, but you also want it to last forever, you want to slow down too. You panic a little now that the fatter part of the book is in your left hand. There are always stalling tactics, of course, like popping into the kitchen to go get a cup of tea. It’s a quick break to try to persuade yourself that you should make your book last. You finally convince yourself while you wait for the kettle to boil, that you should put the book down and leave it until tomorrow to finish but then you begin to wonder…what will happen, will our heroine make it out alive? What will he say to her now she’s said she loves him? All of this of course nibbles at your resolve and it only means the minute you’re back with your book, the steaming drink is abandoned. That little smile returns as you remove your bookmark and you continue to plough through it like a person possessed.

Reading or watching a brilliant fantastic series for us is like you’re riding high, you’re swept away on the crest of a wave until eventually you’re carried to the end of your journey. Sometimes it a gentle landing onto a soft beach, other times you’re slammed into sharpest of rocks and you tumble to a halt.

It’s amazing the feelings a good book can provoke. Both the highs and lows.

There is always a big slump, almost like a small bout of depression, after a really excellent series is finished. It generally only happens with a series, rather than stand-alone novels, because you’ve been with the world and the characters for long enough that in a way you’ve ‘bonded’ with them. This slump comes from the knowledge that you have to leave them now and that you won’t get to be that engrossed again for some time. You’re always left with question of whether you’ll find another ‘hit’. You begin to doubt that there really could be another series available as good or better that this one.

Sometimes this lull doesn’t last long. Other times you spend a day or two thinking about the book. It’s the rare few that will have you in a funk for longer (and they’re the depressing books, the ones that end in great tragedy).  Though we all know the big hitters, where you’re dying for the next sequel. Their affects can last weeks, and weeks. 😀

Does anyone else find this happens to them? Or is it just us, do we become too emotionally involved in characters, that we can’t break away for ages afterwards?

It has to be said, though, the pen (or keyboard now?) with a good writer behind it really can be mightier than a sword.

Don’t forget to go visit Tressa’s Wishful Ending for the Read-a-thon wrap up!!

Car Sweet Car

ID-10047104Ridley: This is basically a post about all the stupid things I do in my car, of which there are many, so I thought I’d generously share a few and have you wondering once again about my sanity. I have to say I love driving, which is hilarious considering it took me three goes to pass my test. Personally I think it made me a much better driver, to this day I know what all my traffic signs mean and I can do a mean three point turn!

The thing about being in your own car though, is it’s like a protective bubble, I tend to forget that other people can see in. I’ve heard it said that psychologically people think of their cars as an extension of their houses, so they do things in them that they’d do at home, they don’t consider them a public place. Now I’m not as bad as some, I still haven’t resorted to putting my make-up on in traffic, but I have brushed my hair, put lip balm on and sipped my coffee from my favourite mug while waiting for the lights to change.ID-1007997

Once, to my utter shame, I also had a bowl of cornflakes. I’ve never repeated that experience, not when as I was spooning it into my mouth as quickly as I could before the lights changed, I looked over mid-chew into the people carrier beside me to find a whole family of four watching me with wide eyes.Cornflakes_with_milk_pouring_in

The other thing I do, for which I get caught regularly, is people watch. I stare out, fascinated by what pedestrians are doing or wearing, of course it always takes me a moment to realise when they start looking back in at me, and frowning. I startled and look away, pretending to dust my steering wheel. Each and every time, I’m always surprised they can see into my protective bubble car-home.ID-100202871

The main thing I love doing while driving, however, is listening to my music. The problem is sometimes my music can be a bit embarrassing, and more than often quite loud. It’s fine if I’m zooming down the motorway and no one can hear me warbling along with my songs. It’s a completely different story when I pull up at traffic lights and suddenly everyone can hear me singing, ‘Pokemon-mon, the jouuurrrrneys just begun!’ or “A spaceman came travelling on ship from afar…” in the middle of June.

If I’m not listening to music, I tend to think a lot while driving, it can be a quiet, contemplative time, particularly on the longish stretch home on the motorway.

ID-100154105Unfortunately, I usually start remembering all the really embarrassing things I’ve said and done over the years. You know, those horrible, bur-like moments that still haunt you. This used to happen a lot when I studied for exams as well, I’d look away from the text book, off into the distance and after a few minutes I’d end up knocking my head against my desk or cringing and squeezing my eye shut as I shouted, ‘why, whyyyy!’ However, while I still have these sorts of reactions, they’re really not a good idea while you’re driving, especially the closing eyes part, thankfully it’s only happened once or twice, after which I’ve severely berated myself.

I’m sure there are numerous other quirks and strange things I do in the car that I’m not even aware of. Maybe it’s only me, but does no one else do these crazy things…? Just me then…? Ah well…. 😀

Bouncing with Fate

ID-100146479Ridley: This was originally going to be a post about the Flight Festival that took place in Dublin today. That’s what I told Latimer I was thinking of doing, but I got word that a family member had a bad fall and bruised themselves, so I went home instead of watching planes. Alls good and everything, but I now know where I get all my clumsiness from, one day they’ll find clutsy is genetically passed on I think! 🙂 

I had so many falls, sprains and breaks when I was younger, I’ve nearly lost count, and it’s not like I’m a particularly sporty type! I never had one of those epic tales like; I was skiing in the Alps in a cool one piece suit with fashionable goggles and while doing numerous tricks and zooming down the snowy hillside, I accidentally ploughed into my handsome skiing instructor and broke my leg.ID-10068874 Where I then laughed about it with him over hot chocolate in a chalet beside a roaring log fire wearing a leg cast signed by numerous people.

Oh no, they’re all rather pathetic stories. In my time I’ve managed to break my left arm, fracture both my middle fingers, knock out my two front baby teeth, sprained my ankle over fifteen times and injured myself in such a way that I tore the muscles away from the bone in my right foot (which is unbelievably sore).

Actually, most of my major injuries happened between the ages of about five and seven. I don’t know maybe that was a wild time for me. I used to love running around the playground, particularly hanging upside down on the metal bar like a monkey, you could also do flips over it. Then one day I slipped, smacked face first into the sand beneath it and bye bye front teeth.ID-100198581 I remember it being really near to Christmas as well, as “All I want for Christmas are my two front teeth”, was sung at me on a continuous basis for weeks.

When I was six, I was playing cops and robbers with my uncle (which actually just involved me running around the house over and over again, while he stayed in the one place and barely tried to act as a cop and stop me) and managed to break my arm by tripping on a root sticking out of a hedge in the front garden and I banged my left arm down on hard dirt and well, Bobs your uncle. I might add, at the exact same time, my younger brother was half way up a large tree and my uncle was lazily advising him to come down.ID-10017839

Now, if you’d freeze framed the whole moment and asked a panel of experts who was about to break something, who do you think they’d have picked? Yeah.

A year later, I fractured both my middle fingers. I became ill in school and I was sent out by the school nurse to sit on the swings in the yard. Feeling bored, I put my fingers in between the small chain links of the swing. Not the best idea just before you faint.ID-10046480

The next thing I remember I’m hanging backwards having slid off the robber seat, my arms in the air and my fingers still stuck in the chains, looking up at the nurse and my teacher.

My final biggish injury was years later, I was twelve and I got Rollerblades for Christmas, I did just great on them in the house, rolling along on the carpet, with numerous things to grab (chairs, tables, people) when it looked like I was about to fall over. Then they let me outside, literally two days after I got them I somehow managed to fall half on and half off a high footpath in front of a (really really slow moving) car, I landed really awkwardly on my leg.ID-100179603

For a week, everyone, including the doctors, thought it was a horrifically bad sprain, but having had numerous sprains already by this age, I knew it was something different. Eventually, I ended up in a full leg cast after the doctors realised I’d torn the ligaments away from my foot. It all took ages to heal.

Now, it’s all been suspiciously quiet of late, suspiciously, and I’ve recently started trampolining classes (sooo much fun!) but even with a few years of a gap of any bumps or scraps, my family still felt the need to warn me not to kill myself while I’m off bouncing.pic-071-300x169

One of the things we do in the fitness class is run along the trampolines, and I got cocky last week, which never ends well. I found myself sprinting way too fast, my momentum built and built and with widening eyes I realised I was no longer in any sort of control of my legs and that I couldn’t stop. I had a split second thought that I was about to go flying so I tucked my arms in and I managed to do a barrel roll over three trampolines and a mat, before I stopped moving. I then hopped up and tried to pretend it hadn’t happened at all. I thought I’d succeeded but then the fitness instructor with her large microphone, and what felt like a giant long arm, pointed at me and shouted, “Fantastic recovery! And don’t worry, no one saw you!” *sigh*

So, while I dance (and bounce) with fate, I can only hope that, fingers crossed, I’ll continue to beat my clumsy genes! 😀 

God’s Architect

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Latimer: I got to go to Barcelona last week.

My stupidity started when I neglected to pack sunscreen. Oh yes, I brought sunscreen to England and Scotland… but to Spain? No. Why? I don’t know! “Latimer you fool! You complete fool!”

It was so hot over there. I touched down, stepped off the plane and my insides began to melt! I didn’t actually burn like I thought I would – nope. I boiled, from the inside out!

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My second lot of stupidity was my continued disregard for one Antoni Gaudí. Yup; I was more or less content to let my exploration of the man’s work end at a fly-by visit to Sagrada Família and a hellish, blistering walk around Parc Güell .

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WOW!! @_@

I flew by Sagrada Família for two reasons; 1) I thought I didn’t like it (but actually I was in awe like everyone else when I saw it) and, 2) the queue to get inside stretched around the entire building, in the harsh glare of the sun.

I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t queue (not after a summer of queuing in London, and the heat of the Barcelona supernova sky @_@).

Parc Güell was a-trip-and-a-half.

A view of Barcelona from the climb!

A view of Barcelona from the climb!

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It was the height of the midday heat, a harsh, steep upward climb to the top of the park, and 30 minutes spent traipsing around looking for the damn Gaudí lizard fountain! I didn’t come into the park through the entrance, but rather the end; so I really faded fast walking around in the heat.

I don’t know what feeling Gaudí was looking to create, but to me, it was like I was in hell; walking through the dried out skeletal carcasses of vast beasts that had perished in the desert sands of Güell/Hell.

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Whoooh, are those two peeps snogging? I think so!! HA!

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I nearly gave up looking for the entrance, but I steeled myself and plodded on, thinking of Bear Grylls and how I must have learned something that could save me, should the moment arise (which on a few occasions I thought, yup, it’s time to go Grylls!).

All I could think was; “Drink my own wee? Güell no…”

I found it in the end, and the lizard was being held hostage by the mob. I couldn’t get to see him much.

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Back away from the lizard… pluz-leezz? No? Damnit…

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I was feeling nauseous at this point, so I fled almost straightaway for a lie down in the hotel.

After that I thought, no more Gaudí.

BUT! An accidental walk over to Palau Güell changed that.

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It was the mansion of the Güell family, the patrons of Gaudí, who commissioned Parc Güell . This family was super-rich, by today’s standards they’d be on the Forbes list and worth 70 billion euro. Their mansion was, actually very small, but the Gaudí -ness of it was astounding. I came to appreciate that he was in fact a genius architect and his mind was a wave of pure inspiration.

No one built like Gaudí before or afterward. The buildings are wacky and over the top; but its more how he built, his attention to ventilation or the way natural light could be brought into buildings. He put so much thought into the building itself, how it should and would function.

Palau Güell doesn’t have doors as such. It has two massive ornate wrought-iron gates, with curling metal.

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When you stand in the entrance hall you can see right out onto the street, but the metal is deceptively thinner and thicker in parts that means the people on the outside can’t see in. That’s all Gaudí.

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The halls curve and arch like waves; it’s like stepping onto a movie set, something from the imagination of a fantasy, or sci-fi writer.

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Shakespeare-inspired stained glass! The Bard is everywhere!!

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That is a Gaudi designed toilet!

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When Gaudí was awarded his degree one of his teachers remarked that; “We have given this degree to a madman or a genius, only time will tell.”

The most famous of the Gaudí buildings is probably Casa Batlló.

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The interior is inspired by the sea, the ceilings are like ripples of water and there are whorls and eddies all over the house.  

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People have lots of thoughts of what the façade looks like. Some say it looks like bones (the spine of a fish); so they call it the House of Bones. They also say that Gaudí was inspired by Monet’s lilies painting and that the façade looks like that; or the balconies look like the masks worn in the parades that used to walk down the street outside the house. And the roof is supposed to look like a dragon resting.

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Many people in Gaudí’s life died in the first decade of the 1900s – including his close collaborator and his patron Eusebi Güell. He took refuge in his work on Sagrada Família. By this point Gaudí didn’t have much money and confessed:

My good friends are dead; I have no family and no clients, no fortune nor anything. Now I can dedicate myself entirely to the Church.”

He had to take alms to continue his work on the church.

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One day, aged 73, Gaudí walked away from Sagrada Família and was knocked over by a tram. He was dressed in tatty clothes so people thought he was a beggar. He did not receive immediate aid and by the time he got to hospital, and was recognised, his condition was critical.

He died of his injuries and was buried in his Sagrada Família.

His story ended on a sad note. But we can look at it like this; his work survives to inspire people in big ways and little ways, and even though he passed away in poverty, the inspirational wealth he left behind will always be far greater than the money he might have had 🙂

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Ridley also went to Barcelona a year ago! Check out her thoughts here!

Also, just a quick note: if you want to see any more of our photos we’re up and running on instagram, pretty regularly now 🙂

If you are on it too, drop us a line! Or if you haven’t joined yet, do!, it’s a great fun way to share your photos!

Ridley’s Grilling-Part 1

Time for Questions!

Time for Questions!

Latimer: This week Ridley gets grilled with questions with too many caveats!

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Ridley: My grilling…do I smell something burning!? Well here goes…!

1.Let’s break the ice (because it will get so involved later!)

A favourite book  – why? Pride and Prejudice, just because no matter how many books come and go, and how many I’ve become obsessed over and loved, nothing really every reaches P&P’s pedestal to knock it off. Though Persuasion has always been a close second.
imagesA favourite movie – why? Technically I have two favourite movies, Hot Fuzz and Zoolander, no matter how many times I’ve watched them, and it’s been a lot, I still laugh at all the same jokes. If you quote anything from either of these movies, or you get my random mutterings of things like ‘Mer-man,*cough* Mer-man’, then I’m pretty certain we could instantly become great friends. 😀 
Zoolander-Quote-zoolander-17583454-350-250Surely I’m not the only person who absolutely loves these? Also, I (am ashamed to admit) have not seen The World’s End yet, I’ve heard it’s good, so it could possibly become another top contender. Stay tuned!
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Comfort food that you love:  Chocolate, particularly Cadbury’s and anything with caramel, oh and I adore Reese’s peanut butter cups. I will readily say I’m probably addicted to the sugary goodness, add in a hot cup of tea and it’s heaven! Though, the last few weeks, I’ve banned myself from eating anything sugary (or basically fun), which includes Cadbury’s. Sad times. 😀 

cadbury2Currently what are you’re listening to: Hmm, right at this moment? Phantom radio on the television, it has a good oldie playing! Anyone remember this one? Loved this song when I was younger.


After that, this song has really caught my attention.I think it’s more the video, I sit there trying to work it out. I know it’s based on Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz, but the ending confusts me something awful. Explanations are most welcome (though I suppose I could google it!).

Current/recent obsession: Not so much an obsession, but my new show is (or was) Orange is the New Black, I watched the whole series, I finished it Friday night with mixed thoughts. An interesting take on prison, really loved seeing why and how each of the characters ended up in jail.
2521756For some of them, it was really purely just wrong place and wrong time, or just one small wrong decision, other times it was wandering down a dark road from where there was really no return. I did start to really not like the main character, Piper, by the end of it though. Despite starting out looking like she was angelic and good and just didn’t belong in prison compared to the hardened criminals in there, the character developments were so fantastic we ended up seeing that a lot of the other inmates had far more good in them, were less selfish and more caring than she turned out to be. Looks can be deceiving! But that’s just my take! I look forward to season two to see what happens. (Netflix really has revolutionised my life, how could you ever be bored with it? (or get any work done with it!))

2. What was the very first profession you wanted to be when you were a wee nipper?

Ridley: Like you Lat, I wanted to be an archaeologist for the longest time, but I think when Jurassic Park came out it switched to ‘dinosaur digging up’ (a palaeontologist). Then I become obsessed with Egypt and I settled on becoming an Egyptologist. After a time I realised though if I did become one there’d be a lot crawling around in dirty spaces, hot sand, hot sun, sunburn, blistering, dust, dry throat, scorpions, beetles…and very low likelihood of ever finding anything, so one or two of those things might have turned me off the idea. Now I just feed the small Egyptologist-wannabe in me by watching the Discovery channel, with this guy, Zahi Hawass presenting

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(he turns up in everything and anything to do with Egypt…it could have been me you know, he obviously just had less of a fear of bugs…*sigh*)
3. You are shipped to a desert island with no internet – you must stay  for 2 months – you have food and clothes and all the necessaries, but you can only take two items to really pass the time – what do you take?

Ridley: A notepad and a pencil.ID-10048428 I was going to say a pen, but could you imagine how frustrating that would be running out of ink half way through the first month!? I’d have to go fishing for a squid and try and steal some of its ink or something. But with a notepad and pencil, you can draw, you can write (imagine all the work you’d get done), you can start a little diary, with the paper you could make origami friends to keep you company and then play little paper games (of some type, I’m sure before I go to the island, I’ll have looked up all the games there are to play with a piece of paper). Though…do I have a little knife to sharpen my pencil if it breaks? O_O ….I’m sure I do, she does say ‘all necessaries’, that leaves a lot of things open, maybe I can bring my phone as well, though somehow I don’t think there’d be any sockets for charging it in the palm trees. 😦

4. I can tell you for 100% that one of the following is real, which one do you want to be real (and why)?

  • Ghosts (Ridley: NO! We’ve already discussed this…*shiver*)
  • Werewolves and shapeshifters (Ridley: I’m thinking this one is my choice, mainly (and being selfish here) as all the rest, even if they’re real, I can’t really become part of the world-unless that’s part of it becoming real, can i suddenly be one of these things??- anyway assuming that’s not the case, at least if shapeshifters and werewolves were real, I could join them- werewolf love bite anyone? Haha…)
  • Hogwarts and magic (Ridley: ah…if only, but if it was real, I still wouldn’t be apart of it, I’m too old for my letter. I’m possibly a Squib though! 😀 )
  • The Doctor and all that world (Ridley: Be so hard to pin him down, it would become a very unhealthy search for him on my part. So probably best not…)
  • Angels and Demons, and demon and angel hunters (Ridley: So cool. I imagine they’d wear cool boots and leather jackets. And moody striking frowns. They’d never want me tagging along asking questions and grinning like a fool.)
  • Superheroes, mutants, X-men and Batman etc. (Ridley: All special people in groups of which I would not be a member, see option B for further explanations. Though if I thought I could become a superhero if this world was real…then possibly this one…god this question is too hard, and now I’m not playing the game right, changing and adding rules, Latimer is going to rap me on my knuckles. RUN! :D)

5. Well, it’s ghosts that are real for this question. Now, you have a choice… hehe…(Ridley: I dread seeing that ‘hehe’ it sends shivers of horror and unease through me…)

  • Spend 1.5 months in a one bed, really filthy hotel, with no internet access and a shared toilet that has never been cleaned and will never be cleaned. The location of the hotel is nowhere exciting, and you have to stay there too. You can’t get internet anywhere in the town
  • Spend 1 week in Mary King’s Close and 1 week in the Vaults. The alleged ghosts are definitely real (but they can’t physically hurt you). You will have blankets and you can choose where to sleep – but it must be in both places, you can’t hang around the visitor stairwells or anything!

You can leave both places at 9AM everyday but must return at 7PM.

ID-10061531Ridley: I think it would have to be ‘B’, you know me too well, that last line in ‘A’ got me. It was a hard choice, don’t like the idea of not sleep for a week due to all the bumps in the night I’d end up hearing. I was actually verging on picking ‘A’ but then no internet anywhere in town either? So cruel, that was the final straw – oh no, not the horrible bathroom, no no, it was limiting of my computers ability to check facebook, email and google…good to know I’ve my priorities right!! 😀

That was part 1, part 2 will come along….eventually!! By the by, join in if you want, we’d love to hear your answers!!

Latimer: Hope you guys liked Ridley’s grilling – hehe 🙂

Mobile Madness

mobiddiction-are-you-a-mobile-addictRidley: Now, we’ve touched on this before, where there have been internet losses and broken laptops, all dark times to be sure (first world issues, eh?). However, I really don’t think I understand how…attached…to my gadgets I’ve gotten. I forgot my phone the other day. The most important of my tools.

It was a day like no other where I wandered off to work, as you do. I’d gotten up early, which is always a massive feat for me, usually I’m darting around doing two things at the same time, ironing my clothes and straightening my hair or smudging eye shadow onto my eyelids as a thick layer of it dusts over my Weetabix (hmmm, chemical flavour). imagesThis particular morning, I was happily full of lovely scramble eggs I’d whipped up, I also had a homemade lunch I’d prepared the night before and I thought I was oh so clever with all my organisation. Then as I’m driving away, humming along with the radio, my eyes widened and I let out a loud shout as I pictured my little phone sitting on the bed, abandoned.

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The whole day was torture. It was like when I was younger (before phones existed. Yes, there was such a time) and I’d forgotten my watch, I’d continuously glance at my wrist and sigh in frustration (even then there were gadget addiction tendencies…). Now, I don’t even own one any more, not when I have a mobile. I’m amazed how much I depend so utterly on it.ID-100161261

I felt quite anxious actually, like part of my protection or suit of armour had been stolen, if I needed help or if someone was in trouble, what would I do, I had no phone to ring anyone and what if someone was trying to contact me right now ringing over and over, and it was urgent. How would they know where to go to get in touch with me, if not through my mobile, or email (but then I use my phone to check that too). I wasn’t even able to finish most of my sentences that day either:

“The password’s in my phone, I’ll just…er…”

“Oh yeah, I’ll just look that up on my…*sigh*…”

“Hilarious, I should tweet that, let me just grab…nope…”

“I’m just going to check my internet banking…god darn it…”

“His number, yeah no problem, I have it in my…eh…”

When I got home that evening, I made a beeline to my bedroom. I was certain there’d be at the very least three missed calls and about half a dozen text messages. How could there not be, I’d been out of contact for almost ten hours. I was pretty certain I probably had pending search parties that needed to be called off too. I pushed the button and the screen lit up. A chorus of loud annoying imaginary crickets sounded in my ears. There were no new messages, no missed calls, no updates, no tweets, no emails.

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I’m over it…mostly…*sniff*

I do remember when we didn’t have mobiles actually. When people queued to use public pay phones and phone cards were for sale in all good newsagents. I even collected the cards for awhile (found them in an old bottle green photo album the other day).1214_bg

My parents were the first people I know of who got a mobile. It had a massive antenna, a small garish green digital screen and it was the size of a piece of turf or a brick (for people that haven’t seen turf in a while!). To protect it, they put a large leather cover over it, with a thick clear plastic front that made it hard to press the large buttons.mobile-ph

What a novelty at the time, but looking back I realise how unbelievably lucky we are now and I shudder to think what I’d be like if I were thrown back in time to the start of the technological advances, where all the things I take for granted would have yet to be properly invented or improved. All of them snatched away from me. No mobile, no Kindle (and instant book buying), no television, no computer…no internet *sob*. And I wouldn’t have a clue how to make any of them, how to describe how the internet actually works, or how engineers went from a large brick to slim pocket sized mobiles. My knowledge of the future would be useless!

So I do wonder, what would happen to poor Ridley, the techno addict, if she can’t even stand less than a day without her phone? (and is now talking in 3rd person!! :D)

My, My Little Ponies

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Latimer: I think my first real obsession was with My Little Pony. I adored them.

Recently, My Little Ponies have made an amazing comeback in the form of a cartoon; My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.

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There was a cartoon in the 90’s too, that I used to watch. There were a few different ones. The one I remember most is the My Little Pony Tales, which is possibly what the new cartoon is based on?

Seriously though… how are those Ponies grabbing anything! They have no fingers!

The return of the Ponies is a complete shock to me, because they disappeared years ago without a trace. They were popular in the early 90’s, and then they just vanished – cartoons and toys.

When the toys came back, very briefly, I bought them, but I was getting older and I couldn’t squeeze myself back into the fangirl suit I used to own. But I tried… lord I tried.

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I tried but couldn’t love them again!

They didn’t stay around long.

I’m going to hit the nostalgia button now and bring you back to my My Little Ponies…

Yeah, I still have them. It’s because of all my old toys, these meant the most. I couldn’t toss them out or give them away. 

Taking them out of the bag was weird because I remember actually getting a lot of them. My birthdays always involved getting a My Little Pony.

They are chunky, clunky beasts, but they have this beautiful old familiar weight to them. The more I took out the more I remembered.

The bride Pony (with a cake, her veil is missing but I remember she had one, I think I gave it to Barbie) – with no bridegroom!

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Poor girl, you have no one to marry!!

The ballerina young Ponies. They were novel because you could move their legs. We were very impressed at the time!

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I had two teacher Ponies (Pony groups came in sets of 4 generally). I still have their school bags and their combs (all Pony groups had specific combs).

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The Beach Ponies where my very first set. I remembered that their hair was all matted and could never be brushed out, because of the carpets we used to have in my old playroom in the garage (I used to drag them over the carpet).

Memories!

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I got this beauty Pony after being in hospital for an operation during Halloween one year.

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This Pony smelt like sweets (that was her ‘thing’) – and she still does.

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These were tiny baby Ponies, so cute (they have massive heads and are weirdly-distorted).

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This is a funny one – maternity Pony. You flick the heart…

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and her babies drop out.

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Yup…

This baby Pony was an interesting one; not because it did anything, but because of what my sister used to say it could do.

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The Pony came with a baby’s plate. My sister would put crackers and coffee grains in the little sections, then she’d tell me;

“I can get your Pony to eat these.”

I was wide-eyed, “Really?”

She’d nod; “But you have to wait outside.”

So out I went (happy, believing) and I’d come back in and the food was gone – except the coffee grains.

“The Pony didn’t like them.”

I was astounded at the time. I wondered why I couldn’t make my Pony eat like my sister could.

The way I packed away the Ponies was also kind of sweet. I packed up all the combs in little bags and the accessories in another. It was like I fully expected to play with them again someday.

I vividly remember thinking, “What do grown-ups do without toys? What do they do all day?” Thankfully you realize people never grow up and toys of childhood morph into those of adulthood and it’s a relief.

I’m happy to see my old obsession has reinvented itself and flown off to another generation 🙂