Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Is it hot in this blog post or is it just me?

Is it hot in this blog post or is it just me?
I'm a lady of a certain age.
I'm going to get a fan.
A big lacy fan that bats to and fro.
I shall be the envy of all those who survey.
I will be a trend-setter.
Fans will become A Thing.
They will trend on twitter.
They will be cool.
I will be cool.
Is it hot in this blog post or is it just me?  

Speaking of which, this is a must-read. ______
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Flaming Nora Blog celebrates 9th year online

Flaming Nora! This blog celebrates its 9th birthday today, August 18th 2015. 

It first went online on August 18th 2006. 

That's a lot of blog posts.

Happy Birthday to my blog. 

Even better, in a few days time it'll be Happy Birthday to me!
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Corrie weekly update - Bye Bye to Boo Boo

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street update has just gone live here.

This week on Corrie,  Rover returns.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Thursday, August 13, 2015

The Curious Incident of recognising your symptoms on stage

To the theatre this week to see The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.  I'd read the book - but so long ago that I'd forgotten much of what happened in it. I'd not forgotten, however, that the book centered around an autistic boy. How this would be played out on stage would be interesting to see.

The play is quite wonderful.  With its stripped back design it's an unusual set but one you soon get used to. The autism is expertly played and I empathised when I recognised some of my own behaviour pattern up there on the stage. As the lead character Christopher takes the train then the London Underground, I couldn't watch. I felt his pain. I've been there, done that, had a bad experience and got myself in a right state too.

If you go to see this on stage, stay right to the end. I don't mean to the end of the show, I mean, stay sitting in your seat as other people are putting on their coats and walking out. You'll be rewarded, I assure you.

The tour website is here.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Sunday, August 09, 2015

Theatre treats and good gigs

To the theatre this week to see something unusual.

Inala - a Zulu ballet featured live music on stage from Ladysmith Black Mambazo along with dancers from the Ballet Rambert.  It was joyous, life affirming, go see it.

And then to see the legend who is Jimmy Cliff perform a small gig at Newcastle Riverside. Another joyous night.  Just when I thought the night could not be better than it already was, he only gave me a wonderful cherry on top of an amazing cake when he sang The Pioneers' hit 'Let your yeah be yeah'.  It's one of my most favourite songs in the world, and one that Jimmy Cliff wrote.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Corrie Weekly Update – chillexing with a dainty

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street update has just gone live here.

This week on Corrie, a Viennetta in the fridge difused a frosty situation.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Sunday, July 26, 2015

The value of volunteering

After 30-odd years of working full-time, I have finally escaped and I am now a volunteer.

After a period of ill-health I finally left a well-paid but badly-suited line of work. I was damn good in my job but my heart was never in it. Never.

There were highlights and good points, of course. I have made some wonderful friends from my time working closely with them in an office environment. And I am proud to have supported and worked closely with some of the UK's most high-profile academic and medical Professors. 

But now, I no longer have to suffer sitting out the 9-5 under migraine-inducing flourescent lighting, trying to rise above petty office management politics, being line-managed by much younger, less experienced staff to within an inch of my life as I tried to support those I worked for. I could go on but there's no point. I'm out of it now. If you've ever worked in an office then you'll know what I mean.

As a volunteer, I can choose what I do. And I've followed my heart this time. I'm doing something which pleases me greatly and I'm learning stuff too - new stuff, fun stuff. There's no 9-5, no micro-management, no sleepless, stressful Sunday nights before another week of counting the hours until Friday comes.

My time is my own to do as much or as little as I wish. And in the time I have to myself, I can cycle, read. Best of all, I can write. I've written this book which will be published in October this year.

Of course, there's no money as a volunteer. But that's a very, very small price to pay to have the freedom to try, to experience, to learn, to discover, in a way that has never been possible in my paid working life.

Without cash coming in I've had to adjust. No more long weekends away, but they're not needed any more as there's no work stress to escape from. I've had to cut my cloth to suit and it's suiting me fine. How much stuff does one person need, anyway? The charity shop has become my friend.

And maybe, just maybe, with my new skills and fresh outlook on the world of work, I could end up in a nice part-time role somewhere too.

Learning new skills as a volunteer, and meeting new people has given me much more confidence than I could have known. I'm learning, I'm growing, I'm happy.

I am a volunteer.

You could be too - check out the national volunteering opportunities website.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora
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