Janet (j4) wrote,

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Away from it all

Went home for the weekend to escape from Cambridge-related stress, which was mostly successful. Ate lots, didn't drink any coffee, didn't get up till midday on Saturday or Sunday, and talked a lot.

Also shopped a lot -- managed to talk my dad into going to the HMV sale in Nottingham instead of doing the gardening (as you can imagine, I really had to twist his arm on that one...) and he and I ended up spending over £150 on CDs between us. And he paid for the lot. "Which was nice." :-)

The complete list, if you care:

  • Bob Dylan - "The Times They Are A'Changin'" (I didn't actually buy this, my dad bought it but realised when we got home that he already had it, so gave me the duplicate)

  • They Might Be Giants - "Dial-a-Song: 20 Years of They Might Be Giants"

  • Suede - "Sci-Fi Lullabies"

  • Morrissey - "Suedehead: The Best of Morrissey"

  • Ramones - "It's Alive"

  • The Chemical Brothers - "Exit Planet Dust"

  • Various - "The Alternative Album"

  • Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band - "Safe as Milk"

  • Thea Gilmore - "Avalanche"

  • Thea Gilmore - "Burning Dorothy"

  • R.E.M. - "Singles Collected"

  • Kirsty MacColl - "Tropical Brainstorm"

  • Beastie Boys - "Licensed to Ill"

  • Juliet Turner - "Burn the Black Suit"

hoiho, that means I can send you my old copy of "Burn the Black Suit"; and k425, do you want to look after offsite backups of the two Thea Gilmore albums, when I get round to making them? :-)

Despite wandering round Nottingham for ages I failed to find a new pair of black combat trousers to replace my falling-apart pair. What I want is very simple: a pair of full-length black trousers with both ordinary pockets and "cargo pockets". Ideally they wouldn't be too heavy, and they'd be quite plain; but really I'm not that fussy. However, the shops only seemed to stock three-quarter-length hipster trousers, mostly with the ankles all ruched up with a drawstring, and mostly with oceans of trailing belts and buckles and ties and zips. Now, I'm actually reasonably happy with my figure at the moment, but the fact remains that I am not (and have never been) a flat-bellied 17-year-old; as such, I really don't think hipsters will suit me. Furthermore, in the absence of comfortable hipster knickers, I don't think I want to advertise M&S or Sloggi quite so blatantly.

Gave up in the end and bought a pair of khaki combats for a fiver; also tried on a pair of black jeans with zip-pockets but their size "12" was three inches short of meeting around my waist. Given that the size 12 smart black skirt (with one cargo pocket) that I bought later was verging on being too big for me, and the size 12 combats that I did buy were a very comfortable fit, I think this only proves that clothes sizes are a bit arbitrary really.

While at home I sorted through lots more of my stuff. I didn't actually throw much out this time, although usually the more infrequently I go home, the easier it becomes to throw things away; I realise that if I barely even remember things, let alone miss them, then I probably don't really need them. This time, though, I brought more stuff back than I threw away -- mostly craft stuff, stationery, socks, and all my old photos.

Looking through the photos was interesting -- I was amazed to see how easily I remembered the names of people I hadn't seen for nearly 10 years. Also unsurprised to see how dreadful I looked in some of the photos ... but surprised to find that I actually looked okay in some of the others.

Seeing photos of the girl I loved for years at school aroused no emotions in me, except that I felt vaguely startled to find a photo with her face cut out -- I'd forgotten that I ever carried a photo of her in a locket. Now my memory has been prodded I remember the locket, though not cutting out the photo; I remember being ridiculously superstitious about the locket, to the extent that I refused to remove it for a Games lesson. I also remember now that I found the locket the other month -- it's rather too large and a little on the tacky side -- and I suppose I must have opened it then, but I'd forgotten it was her picture inside it.

There's probably some poetic point to be made here -- about how distance from emotion changes our perception, and how trivia persists in our memory when things that seemed earth-shatteringly important at the time are long forgotten -- but Larkin has probably already made it.

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