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  • 02 Aug 2011
    I don't know what's happened these last few weeks. It's quite possibly been the best month of my life. When is it all going to come crashing down upon me? It surely can't keep up like this... My bezzie mate Gillian has been off work for 3 weeks, so we've spent a lot of time together as my band have also been off due to various members' holidays. But it all seemed to start while watching Glastonbury on the telly... I've been to Glastonbury two years in row, over 20 years ago, but I know what it's like; I understand the atmosphere, the vibe, man. It really is wonderful. So although it's no big deal watching it on the telly these days, it brings back how special it is, it touches a place in my heart, lets me feel the magic again. It's so huge now, in fact this was true even when I was there, that no-one can see everything that goes on, and the TV coverage doesn't even come close to the experience of actually being there. Even still, to see the big acts playing probably the best gig of their lives is really exciting for me, somehow I know, to a tiny extent, how special it is for them; I empathise, and I love it. I haven't seen a whole set from U2 since Live Aid, and that of course was only a short set. Bono apparently was a little reluctant to do Glastonbury, he shouldn't have worried, they might not all be U2 fans but the Glastonbury audience love the headliners, and U2 are actually quite famous. Their set was great. I've heard some people were critical; what the hell did they want? What did they expect? This was a lesson in rock and roll, this is how it's done. This was one of the biggest bands in the world playing to almost certainly the best audience in the world, and they did what they do with aplomb. The Edge has the best job in rock music, if I was a guitarist I'd like to be him. I'm not a massive U2 fan mind, I just think if you want to play rock and appeal to the masses then that's how to do it, and they do have some mega, smash hit, brilliant songs. So that was good. But the next night Coldplay were to headline... Now I do love Coldplay. Their song-writing is sublime. I was gigging this night though, so disappointed to be missing the set which was to be shown live on the BBC. We were doing a wedding in Kendal, practically round the corner from my house. I packed away quickly after the gig hoping to catch a few snippets of the day at Glastonbury as I took off my make-up, waiting for my ears to stop ringing. I couldn't believe my luck when I turned the telly on about 3 seconds into the repeat of the Coldplay set, the whole lot! Fireworks, lasers, oh so many lasers, and a new, unreleased song to open with, which grabbed me by the ears in a way that unknown songs rarely do. "Hurts like Heaven" - fast, energetic, melodic. These guys can really write a good song, what an opener. So of course I had stay up and watch the whole set, perched on the edge of my bed, smiling my head off, one of my favourite bands, about the third time they've done Glastonbury, but this time they pulled out all the stops. This time, this tour, they have really got it sussed. How to win an audience over. U2 were great, Coldplay were awesome. The Coldplay set was on telly again the next day. I watched it again. Then I found it on BBC i-player, linked up my computer to my stereo downstairs, turned it up bloody loud and watched it again, and again, and again in the background while I was cooking my dinner that evening. And several times over the next few days... Wonderful. Best gig ever. With Coldplay still ringing in my ears, Gillian picked up me and Laura a few days later and we headed off to Manchester to see Roger Waters doing The Wall live in Manchester. Now you've all read about that haven't you, so no need to go into that. I said on the way down that I hoped this gig would get all those Coldplay songs out of my head. It did, and I found myself now singing Pink Floyd songs in my head for the next week. Best gig ever... Although it's not exactly been wall to wall sunshine throughout July we have had several nice hot days up here, so Gilly and I made the most of them. Picnics and barbecues, a few meals out, some gentle walking around The Lake District, skinny dipping underneath waterfalls; all good for the soul. A week after The Wall though, we flew to Switzerland to see one gig at the Montreux festival. Never been to Switzerland before so that was a treat, it's lovely. The gig was my musical hero - Andreas Vollenweider's 30 anniversary concert, his first major gig having also been at Montreux, the gig that really got his career going. I saw him a couple of years ago in Germany, my first time, it was magical, but I've loved his music for around 27 years. This gig was quite different, a much bigger band with several special guests, and once again absolutely awesome. He is the most beautiful player, a truly skilled musician who can play just about every instrument ever invented like a virtuoso, but he is most famous for playing the harp. His music is unique and wonderful, I love him, and to see him again at this special concert was truly a privilege, a blessing. The weather in Switzerland was scorching, and the view around Montreux is spectacular. We swam in Lake Geneva, just so we could say we had, so there I said it! It was a flying visit, but just super fun. The day after the gig we flew back to Manchester, but didn't head up the M6 back to Kendal, oh no, for it was Friday, the first day of the Sparkle weekend... So having flown in from Geneva for Sparkle, what jet-setters we are, we booked into our hotel, quickly tidied ourselves up, ate out at our favourite Thai restaurant, and tottered off towards the Village. We stayed out later than intended, of course, and eventually fell into our beds completely exhausted. Long day. The next day I spoke to Anna-Marie at the park, and met Jane (Janey Woo) and her better half that evening. Thought there might be more GS girls around but I guessed we missed them. A week and a bit after Sparkle was the now legendary Staveley Beer Festival, it's only been going 3 years but is attracting huge numbers already. Staveley is a tiny place, but this event is becoming some sort of "Village Glastonbury". We played it last year with another top local band, but the manager decided just to have one band on per evening this year and asked us to headline the gig on the Saturday, which was quite flattering as the other band last year, good friends and ex-colleagues of mine, have been going a lot longer than us, at least since I joined the band that is. We are also attracting a big following now, and interest has snowballed since the Staveley gig this year. I've posted a couple of videos of the gig, they are better than usual quality, most of our vid's having been taken by fans on their phones, but you still don't get the real feel of one of our gigs, the sound, the audience atmosphere. We had well over a thousand people jumping up and down together in the last set, going bonkers. It's an awesome sight from where we stand. I looked out and thought, these people are having a great time, and I'm one fifth of what's doing it for them. Great feeling, best gig ever... The day after the Beer festival was the Windermere air show. I didn't go, I needed to rest after such a gig (free beer too!) Gillian, who had been our taxi service for the night (Mum and Laura came too) had stayed over, the weather was once again glorious, so we decided just to chill out in my garden. Both of us being sun-worshipers, there we were sitting naked in the garden, sipping a rather special Champagne (Orpale Grand Cru 1998) and eating salad and nibbles, so relaxed, so happy... As Gillian was back at work the next day I remarked what a super end this was to such a great month, it really had been fantastic. She agreed, we chinked our glasses, and right on cue the Red Arrows swooped in right above my house, turning towards Windermere in perfect formation - a sideways W with a V at the front. I couldn't believe it! I screamed with delight, "Whooo!" Our own private fly-by. "Thank you!" I shouted, waving madly. We fell about. Who had arranged this for us? How did they time it so well!? Thank you to whoever, the Goddess, destiny, just plain luck... Remarkable. Best fly-by ever. The following week the band were back at the big music pub in town, another stonker, packed out, more numbers added to our growing fan club. And the day after that a wedding in the most stunning setting, big posh house, cracking view, lovely summer evening in an open-sided marquee on their giant veranda. We don't half do some amazing gigs, so lucky to live in this part of the world and be asked to do events like this. I feel blessed. I feel lucky, and so happy. My heart goes out to all those I see here who are obviously being torn apart with frustration, as I once was. But life is what you make it. You have to stop telling yourself that it's family, your job, your friends, or what people will think of you that prevent you from coming out of the closet, getting on with your own life and finding true contentment. I know that won't go down well with some, and I can already hear people leaping to their own defence. But that's just it, it's a defence. My life has been quite ordinary since I've been post-op (you can read about it in this month's Frock), but this month I have grabbed life by the scuff of the neck and taken control, done what I want to do, and loved every minute. OK, maybe the Red Arrows fly-by was just plain luck, and the truth is I don't believe in any superior being, but you know, it really felt that someone somewhere was trying to tell me something. To paraphrase a scene from Fawlty Towers: (Cue Red Arrows) Whooosh! What was that? That was your life mate. That was quick, do I get another one? Who knows, maybe next month..? xx Montreux Festival Lake Geneva Sea Bass with a saffron white wine reduction My secret place Wedding of the year Water Nymph                                
    4306 Posted by Lucy Diamond
  • 14 Jul 2008
    Well, not any more… I finally did it. I shamelessly picked up a guy at Sparkle, old slapper that I am, dragged him back to my house and forced him to make love to me. Well actually, he seemed quite willing. It was extremely gorgeous. Words cannot express how good it felt so I probably won’t even try, but it was fantastic, amazing, really lovely. My condition, my transition and everything surrounding it has never had anything to do with sexual preference or motivation. But I am a woman and I have needs, and to at last discover sex as it was meant to be for me is indeed truly wonderful, and quite enlightening. Needless to say I want more… It’s so nice to be desired, to be satisfied, to have a mutual attraction, and to actually get on well with such a person, cos actually I’m not really a "casual sex" sort of person. He was a lovely guy though and I trusted him, and the time was right; I was physically ready. Nine months of often difficult, daily dilation now seems all the more worthwhile. And it HAS to be said at this juncture, that my surgeon, the wonderful Dr Suporn, is truly a genius. The earth moved for me, no problem. Yummm. More of that please. Anyway I’d better not go on about it eh. Oh and, sorry mum for your shameless hussy of a daughter, but at least she is an extremely happy, contented, feeling like a natural woman hussy. Sorry, but, well, I’m not really! Wow. So apart from discovering the mysteries of the universe, what else has been happening? I’ve had what should be my last appointment at Charing Cross. I cancelled the previous one (SRS referral appointment) because I’d already booked my surgery and was due to be in Thailand on the date they gave me, so no way was I going to change my flights and everything just to get their written blessing. They didn’t mind though. They wrote to my GP after my recent appointment and said that my decision to have surgery privately was absolutely fine by them; I had lived full-time for more than the required duration and fulfilled all their criteria. It is now up to my GP alone to supervise my hormone regime and anything else I may need from the NHS. No more shrinks! The main reason for my final appointment at CX though was to get them to write their report for the Gender Recognition Panel in order for me to finally become legally female. It seems slightly ridiculous that at the moment I am technically, legally male with a female (fully functioning!) body. Anyway, Dr Lorimer who has always seemed very nice to me, said he would get the necessary do***entation to me within a few days. Two and half months later I’m still waiting of course, their admin really is terrible. I will give ‘em a ring and chase ‘em up, after I get back from MY HOLIDAY…! I’m off to Italy on Thursday with 3 of my girlfriends. Apart from Thailand last year, which doesn’t really count, I haven’t had a holiday for years and years, so obviously I’m really looking forward to it. We are renting a house in Furore, on the Amalfi coast, surely one of the most stunning coastlines in Europe. Lots of winding roads, steep cliffs, fantastic views, Naples, Pompeii, Vesuvius, Sorrento, Ravello, Capri, Ischia, and so on. I’ve actually been to the area before on our last proper "family holiday" when I was 14, so I know how beautiful it is, and really can’t wait to go back. Who knows, maybe I’ll even pick up a nice Italian gentleman. As Gino D’Acampo (celebrity chef) says, "Italian men are like Italian food – minimum effort, maximum satisfaction". Mmmmm. I love pasta, and Italian wine, and Tiramisu, and men… Molto bene. If nothing else it will just be great to see some good bloody weather for a change! Sparkle this year was brilliant, even without my wonderful bonus prize. I went with my friend Gillian, who also had a whale of a time, and this year, for the first time I was there both Friday and Saturday night. I must say a big "hello", and a big "well done" to everyone on the TW netball team who came second in the tournament. Ok ok yes there were only two teams in the tournament, but the other team were a bunch of giants who had played last year. Most of our team had never even met each other, let alone played the game before. We played really well though, and the score didn‘t do us justice, the other team had a lucky spate of goals in the last few minutes. But it was all a bit of fun and I really enjoyed it. Hey, and I scored too! (In the netball I mean, as well as later at Napoleon’s). I think it’s great that someone has organised such a national event as Sparkle, successful again for the 4th year running. A chance for TG’s all over the country to get together and basically have a big party, it’s such a great atmosphere. I don’t think the intention of it was ever to be like the Pride rallies, but it surely can’t hurt in raising public awareness. I know it’s not well-publicised in the media, and surely there are many in-the-closet-types who don’t particularly want it to be, but Manchester certainly knows about it when their city is invaded by all and sundry of the diverse TG world; not everyone confines themselves just to The Village. It’s great to see such huge numbers and to see everyone so happy and friendly. I may be full-time, post-op, almost-legally-female, I may not do tranny clubs any more, but I hope to always show my face at Sparkle. Long may it continue. I wish all you girls lots of love, and great sex! xx She shoots, she scores!
    3334 Posted by Lucy Diamond
  • 18 Sep 2009
      Just been catching up with the latest blogs and see that Marsha has stolen my title, well almost, but I thought of it first! So, I’ve just been to France as promised, with my mate Gillian. The naturist resort we stayed at was lovely, all wooden chalets set in a pine forest, a few minutes walk from the beach. Really peaceful, really relaxing, and a great sense of freedom being able to cast off the shackles of clothing, and not having to decide what to wear! Yes, buying croissants and dining out naked really did feel normal, it took no time at all to get used to being constantly unclothed. It was a great relief in fact as we arrived during a bit of a heatwave, 37 degrees C the day we arrived, scorching sunshine; the weather was super. So I think I’m hooked, I mean, I like my clothes, god knows I have enough of them, but I’d rather it was really warm and I didn’t have to wear any. Oh yeah, and I love having a real all-over tan! Currently I am thrilled and ecstatic and filled with anticipation as I’ve just booked a trip to Germany next week to see my musical hero in concert – Andreas Vollenweider. Who? Yeah, I know, everyone says that. He’s a Swiss harp player, his music usually falls into the new-age/ambient category, but that particular pigeon-hole really does not do it justice. His music is the most wonderful in the world, it brings joy to my soul. True, pure music, filled with beauty. I have been a fan for 25 years or so ever since a friend introduced me to him (in Germany, appropriately), but this will be the first time I have seen him play live. SO excited! And as if 2 weeks naked in France and a pilgrimage to see my musical guru wasn’t enough, I’ve also booked another winter holiday in Jamaica, at the end of November. I know, boring isn’t it, I’m sorry. I promise I will not go on holiday again for a long time, it’s all I seem to blog about these days. Well, see, I didn’t have a holiday for over ten years, so I have some making up to do. There was a time when I really didn’t want to travel, couldn’t have imagined doing a whole holiday au naturel, had no-one to go with anyway, and basically just wanted to hide away in my tumbledown cottage of isolation. Sad really. From Mr Grumpy to Little Miss Sunshine. Which would you rather be? xx
    2331 Posted by Lucy Diamond
  • 04 Jul 2011
    "So ya, thought ya, might like to go to the show, To feel the warm thrill of confusion, that space cadet glow..." And so it was this week that I had the privilege of feeling the warm thrill of confusion, seeing Roger Waters perform "The Wall" live at the M.E.N. Arena. By way of Catharsis I feel I must write a little about it. It was the most amazing show I have ever seen, and I have seen a few. I can't quite get over it... Words cannot express the spectacle of it, the musicianship, the design, the sheer brilliance, but I have to say something. I'd like to go through the whole show in detail, but that's not going to work, so I may pick some random bits. I'm hoping that some readers at least will know a little of the album - The Wall. It's about a rockstar named Pink... The show began with a brief flash-forward. Two Nazi-esque post-apocalyptic-nightmare soldiers marched onstage carrying a soft toy version of Pink in his stripped bare state as caricatured in the trial sequence from the animated footage of the film. A pencil outline of a strange childlike figure, emotionless and vulnerable. The soundtrack to the old film "Spartacus" boomed out as Pink's head was manipulated as though through his broken-down haze he examined the audience as if we were the ones chanting, "I'm Spartacus". The rabble reached its climax, stopped dead, and Pink was unceremoniously dropped to the floor. The soldiers marched off. And then without warning in a sudden flash, all hell was let loose... The opening bars to The Wall are thumping drums, screaming guitars and organ, playing a slow, grandiose rock piece. The drums did not thump here though, they thundered, they beat at your diaphram, they made the earth move. Banks of red maroons shot across the stage highlighting the first beat of each phrase, each double-hit of the impossibly deep drum sound. The maroons were SO bright it was surreal, lighting the whole auditorium in incandescent crimson. Giant white Roman candles fizzing across the top and bottom of the stage came at the end of the song, dazzling, almost blinding. All the pyrotechnics accompanied the stomping opening bars perfectly and stunningly. OK, now you have my attention, this is exciting, this sounds amazing, this is what I call Rock and Roll. The sound quality throughout was immaculate. I say this as a former sound-engineer, indeed I still mix the sound for our band from onstage whilst playing keyboards, singing backing vocals, and trying to look pretty. I digress... It was loud, excitingly so, but the clarity of sound was perfect. Attention to detail in every respect. Waters' vocal sat atop the mix majestically, clear and warm. He sang everything just as he did on the album, bringing a familiarity that you don't always get in a live show, but the whole sound was just, better. He's not the greatest vocalist in the world, but his voice has a certain character; his ability to wail desolately, or scream the lyrics manically is unique and brilliant within itself. I've never been his biggest fan, always preferring the musicality of Pink Floyd's David Gilmour, but I always appreciated the song-writing partnership they had, which to me stands alongside the genius of Lennon and McCartney. I think it's safe to say, I am now a fan of Roger Waters. He is a visionary. What he created 30 years ago and has once more brought back to life and revitalised was, and is, pure genius. The album was played through in its entirety true to the original format, some extended songs and solos, some brand-new brief additions here and there, no major re-working of any songs though. I've heard clips of older live performances of The Wall and it's obvious that this time Waters wanted to get back to how it was originally intended. This was wise in my opinion; it's what audiences want to hear. This was The Wall as it was supposed to be, the same arrangements but with attitude, and with one hell of a show to go with it. Snowy White was on second guitar, quite a surprise. The main guitarist, Dave Kilminster, played the big Gilmour solos note perfectly and with feeling. He blew me away, I have never heard anyone take off Gilmour so brilliantly. His playing was truly wonderful, it was a joy to behold and he certainly looked like he was getting into it. Over the course of the show, giant "puppets" appeared, as big as a house. Again these were based on the grotesque characters drawn by Gerald Scarfe for the album artwork and film; the teacher, Mother, and later the scary wife with her praying mantis arms, and lips that freakishly didn't meet at one side. At the end of the first song a plane flew from the back of the hall over the audience's heads, bursting into flames as it crashed through the wall, which at the start of the show had been built at the sides only. A follow spot hovered out from the main lighting rig above the stage and passed right above our seats, accompanied by massive helicopter noise. "YOU, yes YOU, stand still Laddie!" And then of course there was the inflatable flying pig daubed with slogans such as "Drink Kalashnikov Vodka", floating around the entire auditorium just over our heads. And all throughout the first half of the show, they gradually built a bloody great wall in front of the band... "Goodbye cruel world, I'm leaving you today... Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye!" The final brick was added on the last note of the first set. The first song of the second set had no visuals. There was no band to be seen, they played from behind the wall; Waters' controversial way of making his point. All we could see was a giant, stone-textured wall. "Hey you, standing in the aisles with itchy feet and fading smiles can you feel me..?" This was strangely unnerving. The stage was lit but we couldn't see it, the follow spot faded up during the vocals, the lights shone down behind the wall. How long are we going to just see a very big wall, we wondered. Not for long... Apart from the music, the sound quality, the gigantic puppetry, the effects, and various objects flying around the arena, what really made the show different, what made it a stunning and thought-provoking visual experience, were the projections onto the wall. They were there in the first half, but with the wall now complete (and bloody massive), we saw the projections in all their glory. Not just the animations that had been used in the film, but, well, too much really to even attempt to describe. There was a strong anti-war message running throughout. It was stark, brutal, and factually up to date including hundreds of photos of real people accompanied by their name, rank or occupation and born/died dates, all who'd been killed in conflicts from the first world war through to 9/11 and beyond. It was moving, and so cleverly done... As each brick was individually added to the wall we noticed that after a second or two the new brick would light up. The entire projection area had been broken down into blocks matching the position of each physical brick in the giant wall, so that each one could be lit or projected upon independently. This innovative idea was used to such clever effect in many different ways. At one point every brick on the wall was projected with a different photo of someone lost through conflict. We became aware that occasional bricks began to "fly" backwards, leaving a black hole in the wall as the photo-brick floated away into the vastness of space. More and more bricks faded away backwards, and for final emphasis when about half the bricks randomly remained, each still showing their individual projection, they twisted and floated away together into distant space; hundreds of real people fading away. You had to be there for the impact, it was devastating. Later in the show, individual bricks appeared to explode out from the wall and hurtle forwards into the audience, each brick projection getting larger and spinning towards us. An amazing, seemingly 3D effect, all done by projection onto a very large wall. The projections - weird, wonderful, beautiful, bizarre, and it being Roger Waters, usually anarchic, were omnipresent, barely giving us time to catch our breath as the next mind-bending idea was projected across the width and height of the stadium. And all this set to the massive, "theatrical" music of The Wall. Stunning. After the first song in the second set, the "surrogate band" appeared and took up their places in front of the wall. All were wearing the pseudo Nazi style uniforms, with hammer-logo armbands instead of swastikas, black berets instead of helmets, guitars their weapons of choice. Waters returned wearing the same outfit minus beret, and at first with a long black leather coat, eyeing the band up and down as if performing a military inspection as he walked across the stage; Gestapo meets twisted, delusional rockstar, oh but it was fun. Even when he shot me with his machine gun that flashed from the barrel as he fired, and panned across the speakers as he strafed the audience. And yes he did shoot me! You know when people think the singer is looking into their eyes and is singing just to them? Well he really was shooting right at me! I cowered in my seat, raising my arms in defence, I hope he appreciated me playing along... In the first song, Waters had exclaimed with glee, just as on the album, "Lights! And all the sound effects!" Searchlights flying overhead and picking us out was spooky, but the sound effects were verging on scary! Not content with the giant stack of speakers on either side, many of the sound effects came from another pair, the same size, at the back of the room. Helicopters panned around the 4 speakers, surrounding us with their sound. Guns, bombs, and weird and wonderful noises boomed out from behind. Such volume and clarity, like some immense, rock and roll, sound and light extravaganza, fairground ride. Nearing the end the music built towards its climax of mayhem, the Nazi rally chant, "Jawohl" emphasised the beat as it marched through the stadium. Battle noises, screeches, the final wall collapse and other huge sound effects rattled your body, you felt it right through you. It was awesome, I grinned throughout, it was hard to resist laughing manically. It was frightening and feel-good all at once. This was the warm thrill of confusion; an assault on the senses, safe but terrifying, insane but wonderful. Earth shattering, mind-blowing, beautifully done. xx   Roger's entrance: Goodbye Blue Sky Photos on the wall Mother, should I trust the government? Big wall, nearly built Those bricks are coming right at us! Slightly blurry, but we were there
    1807 Posted by Lucy Diamond
Society Girl's Personal Blogs 1,878 views Jul 31, 2009
Sparkle debrief

 

So long since I blogged I thought I’d better read my last one before I wrote this, see where I’d got up too.

So apparently at a gig I turned down a guy 20 years younger, well, he really was too drunk, and not my type, but I seem to have made up for it at Sparkle…

I was working on the Saturday night so me and Gillian went down late afternoon on the Sunday. We checked in and went out to our favourite eating place to line our stomachs. Bumped into 4 of the TW girls whilst we were crossing Canal Street. Of course I wasn’t made up, hadn’t done my hair, in jeans and a t-shirt, not even wearing a bra, sorry for my slovenly appearance girls! I tidied myself up for the evening, honest. Nice to meet Tracey, who is great fun in the chat room, a fellow rum drinker, and, strikingly beautiful actually. Sorry we didn’t get chance to chat more, Trace.

Anyway, later, after drinking much and chatting to virtually everyone in every pub we went to, I became aware of some guy staring across at me, outside in the smoking area of Napoleon’s (I was talking to a smoker, not smoking myself). So I asked him what he was staring at, not the best chat up line perhaps, but he said, "Sorry, I can’t take my eyes off you ‘cos you’re so gorgeous".

"Oh stop…"

Well actually he was gorgeous, and obviously much younger than me, 18 years younger in fact. He was no more drunk than me, and very sweet, so one thing led to another and I dragged him back to my hotel room, checking that Gilly was ok first. Yes, she was chatting up someone else of course.

Well, I’m not bragging or anything, but it was nice to pick up a 28 year old who was like, totally into me. He was nice, and it was all very lovely, but he probably wasn’t boyfriend material (too young!) so I didn’t bother giving him my number.

I know I know, I’m a shameless hussy, there I’ve said it, so you don’t need to comment on that thank you!

It was very, very nice; I’m approaching 2 years post-op and things have obviously improved since last November, god that’s an age, but then again, that guy was Jamaican. Despite the last time being on a sun-drenched, secluded beach, this time was kind of more romantic, and natural, and kind of felt right, as well as, um, good.

Anyway, that’s enough of that, I’m sure no-one wants to know, just wanted to enter it into my online, somewhat public diary. It’s the only diary I keep after all.

So I’m off on holiday again in a couple of weeks, South-west France this time, on the coast near Bordeaux, and er, a nudist resort. This is something I’ve never done before, but I’ve spent plenty of time on nude beaches so I’m sure I’ll soon get used to it. I expect buying Croissants in the morning and dining out in the nude will feel a little weird at first, but I’m no longer ashamed of my body like I used to be. This is something I never would have done in my former life. I was a little apprehensive before I booked it, but I’m really looking forward to it now. The summer in England seems to have deserted us, rather predictably once again. We did have few days heatwave weeks ago, I guess that was our lot.

Looking forward to swimming in the sea again, (is the Atlantic cold down there?) I’ve now got up to 64 lengths at the pool – a whole mile! Still got a fat tummy though.

Well I guess that will do for now, but I will leave you with a few pics of a couple of recent gigs that were great fun to do. One was at a posh country house on the side of Lake Windermere, the view I had whilst playing was even better, looking up the lake, but you get the idea.

The other gig, as you will see, was a birthday party with a James Bond theme, everyone in fancy dress, including the band, well, sort of. Obviously our singer had to be James (and god he looked handsome), but I thought the other guys should have gone as Odd-job, nick-nack and Blofeld. They chickened out and got some T-shirts printed instead. I felt I couldn’t really get away with being a Bond girl, and don’t look great in a catsuit, so I did kind of a generic Moneypenny, more of a secretary/librarian really, but approaching the look of the one in the Timothy Dalton films - glasses, hair tied up, with a short pencil skirt and satin blouse. Great fun. And hmm, I think some of the band have a secret, librarian fetish thing going on…

soundchecking

bedazzled

bond guys

james & moneypenny



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