Paula's Place

Paula's Place

Monday, 31 December 2012

Resolutions II

So having had a look back at how I have done over the last year it's now time to look ahead at what i want to achieve over the coming year.   Unlike last year these will not all be trans related, with more frequent posting I have found that I writing more and more about other aspects of my life, this seems only right as I am not a one dimensional person, and I am often far more involved in family, work r music matters than in any trans issues that may be around.   However like last year I am going to limit myself to six
1   To achieve solvency ~ I think I have mentioned before that money is an issue, like so many other people I ran up credit card and other debt that I suddenly found I could no longer service.   I have had to make "arrangements" with my creditors and have, with difficulty being sticking to these arrangements.   Towards the end of 2013 I anticipate a small windfall, nothing substantial, but it should be enough to settle everything except the mortgage, that would be a very nice feeling!

2   To take off one day each month, solely for my own edification.   I have tried to do this a few times but have always ending up missing few, these are my days to go to an art exhibition visit a garden or house, time to myself to go out and do something that will inspire and enlighten me, I expect that these may well also be Paula days.   I have already set this in motion I have booked for a couple of exhibitions at the Royal Academy.

3   To spend quality time with my wife, to restore our relationship and to get better at communicating.   I think we have started this and things have improved over the last month or so, but I am still very aware that I could "blow it" big time with one false move.   When our daughter was born I bought my wife a gold chain, a couple of years ago it broke, as part of her Christmas present I had it repaired, this was meant to be symbolic of my determination to repair our relationship, I hope this was noticed.

4   To enjoy Paula, but not let her take over.   I love the release of being Paula, of dressing up and going out, but I do not want to become Paula, full time, I need to be him, for myself, for my family and friends but most of all for my wife and daughter.   Like so much else this is complicated I know that I can't put the genii back in the bottle, but I need to limit the amount of time, money and emotional energy I devote to Paula, however having said that when I do go out, I need to make the most of it and do it as well as I can.

5   To perform as Paula, yes I still fancy doing some stand up, but I would also love to be able to play a concert as Paula, uniting two of my passions, unfortunately I am not sure how easy that woudl be with any of the ensembles I am currently playing with, I still have some hopes of the LGSO and associated wind band, but other than them I am not sure how I will achieve this one!
 
6   To play more music, by this I mean both recorded music to listen to and as an instrumentalist.   I need to do more (or indeed any) practise, especially on the tuba, I have noticed that I am not as good a player as was even a couple of years ago.   I think that a lot of this is down to my conducting, this takes a lot of the time that I was previously devoting to playing, and I have not made up for it any other time.   To a certain extent it is just keeping the muscles in trim, but I definitely need to play teh bass guitar more so that I can get to the level where I am playing the music, rather than the instrument!   It also struck me the other day that I rarely get to listen to music, the television tends to dominate in our household, but I am determined that I should listen to more of the music I know I love, and some that I don't know, I think this is one of the ways that we grow as musicians, exposure to new music as well as looking deeper into what we already know and love.   It could be as simple as retuning teh radio to Radio 3 and Classic fm occasionally rather than leave it stuck on Radio 4.

Maybe these are not all SMART i.e. specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, but they are at least all timed.   I'm not always good at making changes, but it is always worth trying to change the things you are not happy with.

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Resolutions I

This is the time when we all start to think about resolutions and what we are hoping to achieve over the next year.   I have a number of things I want to do /achieve some are simple some more complicated, some just require application others cooperation and may be a bit of luck.

Last year I made six so lets see how I did
  1. To post frequently and regularly to this blog.  I seem to be doing OK on this, I usually manage one a day (the level I set myself) but rarely ow miss more than one day at a time,
  2. To regularly have 100 plus reader a day. Not really under my control, but I am now getting over 150 hits most day and occasionally over 200
  3. To go out dressed more often. I have been, quite often just to do ordinary things, like supermarket or garden centre shopping, I have found myself getting a lot more comfortable with myself, and with other people.
  4. Do a stand up routine as Paula. Total failure, I did manage to book myself in on a "platform" night but then found I couldn't get myself organised
  5. To take more photos to share with my readers. Still not good at this, I'm not great at taking photos anyway and getting ones of myself adds a layer of complexity and organisation, and of course when I am out I a more interested in what I am doing than in taking pictures.
  6. To come out to at least three long standing friends.   This year I have come out to my good friends S and B, I have just checked back and found that it was in fact last year (2011) that I came out to P and her husband, I shall miss her now she has moved, S & B are both cool but by the nature of what they do I will not be able to share Paula time with them the same way.   I have also come out to one other friend, but unlike the other two he has not, and is unlikely t meet Paula.
So all in all I think that's not too bad I shall call that 5 out of 6, I shall give my self a pat on the back but tell myself to try harder next year.

Friday, 28 December 2012

Not a Teenager

I woke up this morning later than planned, and feeling definitely second hand, I had far too much to drink last night and paid the price this morning.   Too make mater more complicated I had at least some sense last night and didn't drive home but "crashed" at my friends house, so this morning I had to go home, get changed and then get to work, only around an hour late.

I don't think I was giving prime value for money, I just can't do this sort of thing anymore.   I have to admit that I'm no longer a teenager, there was a time when I could (and did regularly) do this sort of thing with little care, now I am wasted for the whole of the following day, ahh another aspect of growing old.

We are going out tonight, I think I may volunteer to drive and not drink, just for a change.

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Gerry Anderson RIP

Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward
Very sad news today for all Thunderbird Fans after suffering from Alzheimer's disease for a couple of years Gerry Anderson has died.    For those of us of a certain age Thunderbirds, Joe 90, Stingray and Captain Scarlet were not only part of our childhood, but part of the adults we grew up to be.   Not only did we get some iconic images but these were also shows that changed our language, just think of the countdown at the start of Thunderbirds or the meaningless response F.A.B.

I is also remembering that the music for these shows was very cinematic, with full orchestra and top notch singers, I think I may be introducing the Thunderbirds March into my Band's summer repertoire this year.

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Thank you Brooke

Yes think you for a timely reminder of the true meaning of Christmas
I want to go to that party, and I want to wear that black dress (actually I want to be able to wear that black dress), but failing that the other thing I wouldn't have minded finding in my stocking....

Monday, 24 December 2012

All I want for Christmas

The Telegraph has done a list of 15 things not to buy her for Christmas I can't argue with any of them.   There may be one or two things I might buy myself but I wouldn't want them as gifts.   So what do I want as gifts.   The one thing I want most is a Bass Guitar Gig Bag, however I think there is little chance that anyone else will buy me one so I expect to be hitting e-bay pretty soon.

But of course what I really hope for is a nice quiet couple of days with my family, there will be a few visits to friends but it is that time when we are alone as a family that I treasure most, the one thing I dread, the washing up ~ so maybe what I really want for Christmas is a dish washer!

So a very happy Christmas and New Year and may God bless us, every one!

Sunday, 23 December 2012

'Tis the Season to be....Busy

As a tuba player I am suddenly in a lot of demand, on Thursday evening we played carols around our Parish, four brass players and a little choir while others knocked on doors and handed out mince pies sweets and a list of the Christmas services in the Parish over Christmas.   As we are a joint benefice with two ministers and two Churches there are quite a lot of services.   Then on Friday evening we had an outdoors carol service in front of one of our Churches, this time three brass and electric keyboard along with the choir.   All great fun and a good thing to do but none the less pretty tiring after a days work, on both days I didn't get home and have any dinner till around ten.



So it was nice yesterday to have a it of lie-in before driving down to Hever Castle for a final concert of the year, this time with a different local Brass Band playing BBb bass.   It was good to play some different music and meet up with some old friends, also the way the castle and grounds were lit up was very pretty, indeed I wondered about using the title "Hever on Earth" I didn't have a camera with me so these shots are ones I took on my rather poor quality phone camera.


It seems odd but I realised the other day that I only seem to play Mrs T (my old Hawkes Cavalry Model BBb) at Christmas, I used a band instrument yesterday evening so Mrs T went back up into the attic for another year.   This evening I will be playing at our main Parish Carol Service for what feels like the first time for ages I will be using "the new toy" my Conn CC.   I shall have to find some time today to have quick practise to see if I can remember which fingers to use!

We still haven't heard anymore from Relate about some more counselling, so I think I can say that that will be it for this year, still I do feel things are a little better between us and I am looking forward to spending Christmas Day with just the three of us together with no one else around.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Bang Bang

Right now there does seem to be just one subject that is dominating the news, and the blogersphere, regardless of the transition from Plebgate to Plodgate, the NUM refusing to pay for Arthur Scargill's flat in the Barbican and the withdrawal of UK troops from Afghanistan, it is gun control in the USA that dominates.   Reading a few blogs I am struck by just how alien the arguments seem to my British sensitivities.   In most other European countries much of their Police Service will be routinely armed, but here in the UK we are used to the idea that guns are only for exceptional circumstances, even for the Police.   The very idea of owning a gun is highly alien to the majority of the population, any gun needs to be licensed, and the vast majority are shot guns held in rural areas for pest control followed by single shot hunting rifles for those few who follow the sport.

As something of an outside observer I cannot understand how the majority of Americans can sit by and tolerate the sort of incident that happened in that Connecticut high school and not seek to bring gun ownership under some sort of control.   Yet I hear that today the HRA think that they will make schools safer places by bringing more guns into them!   I simply can't understand how the USA can change, they are so used to having guns around, and there are so many in circulation that I can't see how any useful legislation could be enforced.

In short I am reminded of the old rural gentleman who when asked for directions to somewhere simply replied "I wouldn't have started from here"   Well given that we are all still here and the world did not end this morning then it does look as if the US Government is going to have to some how deal with the situation.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

A tight spot

I mentioned that I was "up in town" on Sunday, I always enjoy my ventures into London as much as anything as I get a chance to see some well dressed ladies.   By the nature of my work and the places where I go I don't get to see many women who will take care to be well groomed and have at least a nod towards fashion (apart from my daughters teenage friends that is).    I am very pleased to see that the fashion for opaque tights and miniskirts or skinny jeans with boots is still very much on trend, I also rather like the similar look of dark tights / leggings boots and a colourful flowing tunic top.   I suspect that I am personally far to old and bulky to carry off this look, but I can still enjoy looking.

There is no getting away from the fact that black tights are very much "in" whether it is a sheer "dress" look with heels, a casual look with opaques and boots or something in between, I have to say they can be very sexy.   Driving to work this morning I saw a lovely looking girl with riding boots, black animal patterned black tights and a black mini teamed with an on trend short military style overcoat and I was just overcome with how good she looked.

In a way I sit on both sides of the fence and this is one fashion I love to see and love to wear, so I'm a winner all round.

On the other hand this could just be an excuse to put up some nice photos I found browsing the old internet.


Monday, 17 December 2012

Resistance is futile

I notice that a lot of my recent posts have not had a lot trans content, indeed at least a couple have been replicated on my other (non trans tuba player) blog.   This is partly down to the simple fact that I am much more than a cross dresser, this is not the sole defining feature of what makes me, me.   I say in my profile that there are many aspects  to my life, cross dressing is just one of them.   It happens to be one that, because of my social circumstances, it is difficult for me to talk about with other people so it is often the central aspect of this blog.

I have been busy recently with all sorts of things, cooking an Alpha supper for 30 people, arranging and conducting music for a Christmas performance, playing at St Paul's with the other Christmas Tubas, as well as work.   There is a bit of me that always hopes that this sort of level of activity will distract me from trans thoughts, it never works.   I find that I am wanting to at least under-dress more than for some time, I suspect that this is because of my lack of opportunity or willingness to fully dress, because of my marital situation.   I can't see that I will have any opportunities to dress fully for the remainder of this year but I am feeling the urge to very strongly.   I want to talk to my wife about this, but am unsure of doing so until we have had at least one more session of counselling, and we are still waiting for an appointment.

In the mean time I will be looking forward to the 9th January ~ a day I have set aside for girly activity ~ and resisting the urge to shave beyond my face.   That in itself is a whole separate post, the whole thing about the attitude to body hair is very complex, somehow I need to train myself o all in love with my hairy chest.   It s strange that as a boy I couldn't wait for the hair to grow, now at times the sight repels me.   Oh for a simple life, in the mean time, another Christmas Tree

Sunday, 16 December 2012

It's beginning to feel a bit like Christmas

Christmas Tree cup cakes
I'm not the most enthusiastic person when it comes to Christmas, in fact in many ways I'm a bit of a Scrooge.   I can't get into the "Christmas spirit" until I have played a few Christmas gigs, well this weekend I have managed two.   Yesterday evening the Brass Band played at Brookwell Park Lido, maybe not the most prestigious of venues, but alongside the choir from St Paul's Church over the road we had a great time, playing carols and Christmas songs.   We had a good audience with a great age range, from some quite small children to some ladies of much more "mature" years.   For once my wife came along as well, we had a good time, and on the way home stopped for a quick drink, all in all a good evening.

Today I took a little trip up to town with Mrs T (my pre first world war Hawkes and Sons BBb Cavalry model tube) to join with around 40 other tuba players to play some carols on the steps of St Paul's Cathedral.   I missed this event last year but have played the previous four or five, and I suspect that this was one of the smaller turn outs.   I don't know why since the weather was nice and mild, and there had been a fair amount of publicity so I would have expected more like 70 or 80.   Still there is nothing like the sound of massed tubas playing carols in four part harmony, it was good to meet up with some old friends.   It's a bit early for there to be any photos available on the Internet so this is one I took on my phone as I arrived, I shall be checking over the next few days and if there are any good ones I will stick them up.

Shooting hoops

I heard about this story through Google+ so it does have some uses, thank you Toni Lindsey.   It is quite inspiring to hear of a transgendered sportswoman competing, as an equal, but perhaps even more inspiring to some of us is to hear of anyone in their 50s competing at this level, read about it here  http://www.suntimes.com/sports/17011957-419/transgender-player-attains-college-basketball-first.html

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Audition!

This mornings post brought the usual seasonal selection of Christmas cards and bills, along with one large A4 envelope addressed to all of us.   This letter was from the BRIT school, a while back my daughter applied for the sixth form there, we were told that we would hear from them by the beginning of April.   We had steeled ourselves to a long wait, so I was very pleased when I opened the letter to find that my daughter has an audition and interview next month.
There could be a lot of pressure on her over this, she has an audition piece to prepare, and another to learn for a theory test.   They also want a letter explaining how she is preparing, sounds like a lot of work, but I'm sure it will be worth it.   I can't imagine her being happy unless she is singing and playing, one way or another I am sure she will be involved in the music business. 

There is also the added attraction the school is a lot closer than her current school, Selhurst is within walking distance whereas her current school is the best part of an hour's journey each way.   It would be really nice if she could not have to do that journey anymore.   Many (many) years a ago I attended the Selhurst Grammar school (for Boys) the BRIT School has taken over the buildings of the Selhurst Grammar School (for Girls) next door. If she does get in I truly hope that she will be a lot happier there than I was next door.

Somehow it sort of puts my evenings work into some kind of perspective, I will be conducting the local Brass Band in an outside "singalong" of Christmas songs, still it should be fun and they are providing "Bambi burgers" and mulled wine.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Strange

I had a very strange experience today; as it was very cold this morning I couldn't get on with any of the gardening work I have in hand, and due to "essential maintenance work" we had a scheduled power cut as well so I couldn't get on with any of my admin work either.   I decided not to waste the day but do some seasonal shopping, as well as my banking I bought my wife a nice scarf for Christmas and took in for repairs a gold chain I bought her when our daughter was born.   I hope that this will be a reassurance of my continued love.

Anyway to the point, my wife does not approve of some of my wardrobe choices, including the fact that the only respectable jeans I have that are even close to fitting are women's.   I have decided that I should replace at least one pair with some of a more masculine cut.   So while out today I checked over the jeans in the charity shops, in one shop I found a couple of pairs worth trying on.   I took both in to the changing room and first tried out the Levis, they were a bit too much of a "skinny" cut for me, then I tried on the other pair.   They were M & S so reasonable quality but I was not expecting a particularly fashionable cut.   They were very comfortable and a very good fit I had decided to buy them (a good price as well) when it dawned on me that the fly was the "wrong" way round, checking them again they had a tab inside saying size 14 and on the button they did say "M & S Woman".

There have been plenty of times when I would still have gone ahead and bought them (even with some glee) but with our current situation I thought it not wise, and I had especially gone to the men's rack!   The assistant was so embarrassed when I told her that the jeans had been put on the wrong rack and marked up as Men's Medium, I didn't have the heart to tell her that they were also a perfect fit.
No.2 Trafalgar Square Christmas tree 2011

Well I am well on my way to having completed my Christmas shopping, I have gifts for both my wife and daughter, now I just have my brothers and mother to worry about, in the best family tradition books will probably be the answer, it's just a question of choosing which ones.    I have just finished reading a book given to me by my friend P, "This Charming Man." by Marian Keyes, yes it could be called "chic lit" but the interest for us is that it has a very sympathetic portrayal of a cross dresser, she has clearly done a bit of research and has managed to go beyond the usual shallow stereotyping to show a range of cross dressers, from across the community.   These characters are not central to the main story line, but are an interesting part of the tale.   Even without the cross dressing interest this is a real page turner and great fun, so here you have it your first Paula's Place book review and recommendation.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Frosty

Wednesday mornings I go to an early morning prayer meeting at my Church, at the moment this means getting up early (for me) and getting out while it is still dark and before breakfast.   By the time we are finished it has got light and we can begin to see something of the day.   This morning that meant frost and mist.   Walking back home through the local park I was struck by the beauty of the trees covered in frost, I was quite sorry that I didn't have my camera with me.




When I got home I could see some details of the garden picked out by the frost, turning the ordinary into the extraordinary.   While I am not particularly looking forward to going out into the cold again to do some garden work, I am cheered by the beauty of these images.

Later today I will be cooking for the final session of the Alpha Course we have been running, this will be quite a big deal, since it is the last night I will be preparing a three course meal including a hot dessert, and as yet I haven't even done the shopping.   So I am in for another busy day, set in a busy week, and next week I start my two days a week in the office, as well as all the gardening work; and this is meant to be my quite time!

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

A Short note

Yesterday Stana touched a bit of a raw nerve.   She does the most marvellous pictures with her own annotations, this one appeared on Sunday.

During our first session of counselling, at one point the counsellor asked what sort of clothes I wear, my wife answered straight away "pretty trashy" then qualified it with a "judging by what I have found" now much of what she has found are the rejects, but this idea that I dress like a hooker (the trade, not my old position of the Rugby field) is in her mind, and although I did point out that I will generally wear either a dress just above knee length or mid calf or trousers, I suspect she is set in this idea.

I think she will be more than reluctant to meet Paula in person, so I'm not sure how to change this view, other than to just keep telling her when ever the subject comes up.   I do often wear a higher hemline than she does, but this is simply because being quite a tall girl I find that I prefer a length that is either short or long, those in between just look silly.   I will admit to a couple of mini skirts hiding at the bottom of a suitcase, but do I wear them?   well not when I am going out, and certainly not in nice company, after all I am not a teenage girl!   However my daughter is, and so she does wear skirts that are short, indeed some of them seem to barely qualify for the term skirt as opposed to belt, I reconcile myself to this with the thought that this is what teenage girls wear.   My daughter, unlike me, is quite short and so goes for the much shorter skirt to exaggerate the length of her legs, and on her it does look good, but then she is 15 not 5*

Monday, 10 December 2012

Catch up

First Christmas tree of the season
I see I have missed a few days of posting so this is a quick catch up, I have been very busy with lots of different things
  • Saturday night my Symphonic Band played a concert at my Church, my first "Christmas event of the year.   As I host in effect the host this meant I had to set up, move the platform around set up chairs, while my wife and daughter prepared mulled wine and fruit juices, mince pies and "nibbles", decorated the tree etc. I also had to introduce the band and plug the appeal.  The evening was a great success, the band and audience both enjoyed themselves and we raised over £350 for the food box operation we run.   All very good but by the end we were all a bit drained.
  • Sunday and I found I was on rota for both morning and evening services, due to the timing this left little time for much else apart from having lunch.   I find that of all the different roles I have in the Church family that praying for others can be one of the more draining, so yesterday we made a point of praying for each other after we had prayed for others, I think this is a good thing and we shall continue to do it.
  • In amongst all this I have had to arrange three pieces for the Brass Band for tonight's rehearsal so we can perform them on Saturday, they are only short pieces but it all takes time, I have completed the arrangements but still have to print out the parts.
  • We have not yet heard from Relate about an appointment for some more counselling, I hope I didn't freak the out too much, but given the well worn statistic on one in every hundred men being a cross dresser I'm sure they must have someone with some experience, I am still hopeful.
  • My wife has not said much but has done some research and has found WOBS Women of the Beaumont Society I'm not sure if she has contacted them yet, but has said she will, she also found Changing Attitudes, an organisation I had not come across before, but intend to investigate further.   I a not interested in getting involved with any campaigning or aggressive outing r anything like that, but some prayerful consideration and theological discussion could be right up my street.
In short a very busy, but progressive time. I also expect to have a lot of work on (which is good) as tomorrow I will be seeing one of my consultancy customers about taking on a period of office cover which would mean two days a week for a few months.   This would be a big change in the way I work, but would give a much needed financial boost and some security.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Marriage

Thank you all for your support as we go through what is a difficult time in our marriage, I am convinced that this is a difficult time, and that working together we can get through it and be stronger for the experience.   It has forced us to look at ourselves, and how we relate to each other, on reflection I am glad that we have started the process and am confident that we will survive and prosper as a consequence.

Under the circumstances it feels a little odd to be writing about marriage in general at all, but I am a big fan of marriage, and so want to see the institution flourish.   It looks like the Government will soon be publishing a bill extending the opportunity to be married to same sex couples.   At first I believed all the hype from some Christian activist websites and e-mail news that this was a re-definition of marriage, that Churches would be forced into having to hold ceremonies against their firmly held believes, that in short this was the end of society as we know it.
The case against

This is not a crazy as it sounds after all marriage is the bedrock of our society, it is the standard context for a family, and although it has been through a time where marriages are breaking up more and more, there does seem to be no popular taste for abandoning it as our standard for living.   I was interested to hear David Cameron saying that they will now after all allow same sex marriages in places of worship, as a response to the consultation several Churches and synagogues want to be able to solemnise these marriages, just as I now feel that people who happen to be born homosexual should not be denied the joy, the dignity, and the security of true marriage, then neither should those of faith be denied the opportunity to have this solemnised in Church, or indeed neither should the Church be denied the opportunity to serve it's members in this way.   It seems that for once I am actually agreeing with David Cameron and the Government (if not the Conservative party), I find this somewhat uncomfortable but when I find I am wrong I am prepared to change my mind!
The case for

I do think it is important that there is protection for those religious groups who are opposed to this, whatever their faith, and there may well be areas of law such as equality and human rights legislation that have to be looked at to accommodate them, without such an accommodation I cannot see such a bill getting through Parliament, and I now feel that it is more important that as a society we should allow all who wish to be married to be married.   This is not a re-definition of marriage, more a widening of the franchise.

The Church of England has a pretty poor track record recently of following the will of it's members, this may be an opportunity for the (all male still) Bishops to take a lead, make sure that the rights of individual Churches are protected, while not impinging on the rights of individual people.

Sorry, no jokes today, Meg beat me to it again!

Friday, 7 December 2012

Blue Peter

The enduringly popular BBC children's TV show Blue Peter often has a slot where one of the presenters will make something, or at least appear to, as they are not always particularly adept  there is usually one on hand to show, with the immortal line "here's one I made earlier.   Because of this the term Blue Peter has entered my lexicon simply to mean One I made Earlier.
Well before my home situation blew up I bought myself a long red sweater / tunic, very cozy and snuggly, I had also acquired a nice pair of low heeled black boots.   Even though I have often railed against leggings I thought the top and boots would go well with black leggings, so the other day I tried them as an outfit, I didn't get fully dressed or made up, just tried the outfit, and I think I was right it does seem to work.   Not sure I should go out without all the padding and some warpaint, but I remember feeling very comfortable.

Today (Wednesday) I got a call from the organiser of our support group, she had found a couple of leaflets
that she thought might help our situation (from GIRES and from WOBS ) so I popped over to see her and pick up the leaflets.   When I got home I found earlier today my wife had already visited the WOBS web site, and was thinking of giving them a call.   Of course I can only encourage this, and take it as a positive sign that she is at least prepared to try to understand, I really don't think I can ask for more than that, I can't begin to understand how difficult it must be for her, and for my daughter, I hope that these support organisations cane help where I only flounder.

We have agreed we want to continue with the counselling so this evening I dropped a form off at our local Relate Centre, now we just have to wait and see when they can see us and who gets assigned to our case, I did ask for someone with some experience in trans matters, but of course they may not have anyone who fits this description available.   Mind you if we accept the 1 in 100 statistic then there is a fair chance that at least one of the counselors themselves in trans to some degree.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Freddy Bassett's

Joe makes a very good point, I do wonder whether my cross dressing is the problem, or a symptom of other problems in our lives, in our marriage.   Some of the questions I was asked on Tuesday at our first session made me wonder, "what triggers the urge to dress?" "Why have you not sought help to stop before?" "Are there not other ways you can feel feminine without the clothes?" however I also wonder if they are the right questions at all.


I am very confused at the moment, but I do know that I want to do whatever I can to make our marriage "work" at the moment I have trust that my wife shares this determination, I think there are areas where we both need to change.   I think that there are often times when my status within the family is undermined (I won't go into details) following these occasions I will often find I am dressing, or at least thinking about it more.   It seems strange that maybe I react to having my masculinity undermined by boosting my femininity, or maybe this is just another source of stress...... too many questions not enough answers.

Feeling pretty grotty this morning, and seeing the snow fall I decided on a day at home, I have some data entry work to catch up on so it won't be a wasted day, but started off with a long soak in the bath, while I was soaking there was yet another piece on Woman's Hour about prostitution, one of the interviewees made the unchallenged assertion that no one had the right to make a moral judgement about what other people do, well maybe - to a certain extent.   I don't want anyone making a moral judgement about my clothing choices, but much of our legal infrastructure is based on moral judgements, this is why we have laws against rape, child abuse, violent crimes etc. etc. to a great extent the basis of society is the consensus of moral judgement, it is just that the centre of that judgement changes.   In the 60's much was illegal that is now an accepted part of everyday life, there is still a mutual moral judgement, it is just that our collective view used to be that homosexual acts should not be allowed, now the view has changed so that any discrimination on the basis of sexual preferences is anathema to most of us.   We not only have the right to make a moral judgement, we have an obligation to, it's just that most of us only have an opportunity to act on those judgements once every five years or so.   I do think that we need to address the legal situation of people working in the sex trade (it is not an industry!) and I am glad that BBC is grasping this thorny issue, this is just the sort of thing the BBC is good at and should be encouraged to continue to do.

Just for Juliet, from Chambers (1993 edition) " Minutia mi-nū shi-∂ a minute particular or detail:- usu in pl minutiae (-ĕ) " There I knew it must be in there somewhere

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Tell me a story

I don't often publish anonymous comments ~ partly because if you are not prepared to admit to a name I think you undermine your credibility, and partly because most of them are not worthy of being published.   This morning I got an anonymous comment on an old post Fiction Mania? it turns out to be from Courtney Act (presumably a "nom de plume" which is fine) linking to a story she has written and published on Fictionmania.   I have read the story and it is a good sensible account of what must have been a very good time for her, the point is that it is just the sort of thing I was complaining about the absence of, a nice story rather than an account of a sexual fantasy.

I do think that to a certain extent these stories can be a way of experiencing cross dressing vicariously, when we don't have the opportunity to dress ourselves we can enjoy the experience of others by reading about them, however I do not feel the same way about enjoying other people's sexual fantasies.   Well done Courtney a well written nice account, I strongly suspect autobiographical.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

A Landmark passed

Well we had our first (assessment) counselling session this evening, it was an interesting experience, for my taste a little too much emphasis was placed on my crossdressing, but then I guess that that is the most prominent symptom of our difficulties.   However I do think it was a good start to a process, and I think we will continue with it.   I have asked that we are assigned a counsellor with some experience intrans matters, but I am not convinced that that is necessary, what is necessary is that we talk and we have now started.   When my wife started to talk about how she felt when she found out about my dressing she started to cry (quite genuinely, she has no guile) and I just wanted to embrace her. This reminded me w much I love her, but also reminded me that all was not well with our relationship then, I am forced to wonder how much of my dressing is a symptom rather than a cause.

This is something of a landmark, an acknowledgement that although we do have problems we are still committed to each other, we still love each other, I just have to trust that the process will work in the mean time I will have to do what I can to show my commitment.



And yes we also passed 50,000 page views today

Monday, 3 December 2012

GOLD!

One way and another it has been a pretty busy weekend, after going out to dinner on Saturday night yesterday morning we were all up bright and early as my wife took me and my daughter into Croydon to catch a coach as we travelled down to Southampton for a band festival, we had a good day out and spent a bit of time together ~always good ~ my band played well and received a gold award, the only problem another band received a platinum, we now have to wait to see if we will be invited to play in the finals next year.

By the time we got home a cold I have been fighting off finally got it's hold of me, and I just spent the rest of the afternoon and evening in front of the TV watching the weekend's rugby and old episodes of "Cheers"

I was very pleased with the England performance, and equally disappointed with the Welsh, there was a game to be won there and they lost it, I could go on (and on and on) about these two games but I will refrain.

This morning woke up feeling grotty, running nose, sore throat, tired muscles, yuck! but have to go to work anyway, would have preferred to stay in bed all day and feel sorry for myself.   Again this evening I shall have to force myself to go to the band rehearsal to practise more Christmas music, by the time Christmas comes I will be sick of it.   I just hope I am feeling a bit better tomorrow, I really don't want to be feeling "ick" and sorry for myself when we have our first counselling session.   I don't know what to expect, and am trying hard not to anticipate what may or may not be said.    Strangely things feel much better between us already, both of us making more effort to accommodate the other and being more considerate of each others feelings.   For me the permission to go to the dinner on Saturday night is a sign that this is not going to be one way traffic and that we can work this out between us.   I may be feeling grotty, but I am also optimistic.

I may not get another opportunity to dress this year, but if I know there is not total blanket ban then I can look forward to the odd day out and that should be enough.   Ideally I woudl love my wife to accept this side of me and embrace Paula as a friend, but that is never going to happen so I will settle for what I can get, and keep focused on the "big picture".

On a different note it looks as though I shall tick over the 50,000 views today, thank you all for sticking with me.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Good Bye to all That

Well we had a great time, I've just got home and it's already tomorrow so this is just a quick update until I get time to write more.   Despite a nail polish disaster I felt pretty good about how I looked, maybe a bit too glam for the occasion, but I wanted to make the most of tonight, cold or not.   So no to thick woolly tights and sweaters, on with the seemed stockings and silky cocktail dress.   I also wore my new high heels, I just wanted to make sure I wore them a least once, and of course following the popular vote an anklet.

I think we all had a good night chatting and enjoying each others company, I met a couple of girls I didn't know which is always nice, I was also asked if I could make it to the next meeting as there will be another married girl there, perhaps I could help her, well at the moment I don't feel as though I am in any position to offer help or guidance to others, but if I could I would, but all other considerations aside, my schedule simply will not allow it (even if my wife would)

A couple of the girls took some photos, if I get copies I will post them.   In the mean time I have now changed back into drab, before going upstairs to bed, cleaned off all my war paint, taken off my nail polish, fingers and toes, and even trimmed down my finger nails.   So as long as I don't take my shirt or trousers off I now look just like any other bloke.   In a couple of weeks all my body and leg hair will have grown back, this is goodbye to Paula, at least for the rest of 2012, who knows what 2013 will have in store.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

To dine or not to dine

I feel sure that we are on the edge of a new stage in our relationship, I don't know where we are going or how we are going to get there, but I do know things are changing.   Relationships with my wife have been a lot better over the last couple of days, positively friendly.   Now usually my wife says what she means but often she will also store things (especially resentments) up, until they burst out.  

So back to the question do I go out to dinner tonight or stay home?   Originally y daughter was going to watch a film with a friend, the friend has dropped out so my wife immediately offered to go with her, I was not asked, and felt I would not be wanted.   I do not want to fail a test I don't know I'm taking, so I felt the only thing to do was to come right out with it and ask, and she sad yes, go; so I will.   I just have to trust that we are both joining in this new found spirit of openness and honesty.

The weather has turned very cold the last couple of days so I have been considering whether I am better dressing for the weather, with boots leggings and a sweater dress / tunic.   This would be sensible, but I strongly expect this to be my last outing for some time, so I want to wear some sheer hosiery and frivolous shoes.   I may be too glam for the evening, I may stand out even, but tonight I feel like throwing caution to the wind.   So I come back the question I asked a while back (but feels like ages) shall it be a little black dress, or the black and silver cocktail dress.   I am on my own now so I will try a couple of alternative outfits and see which I prefer for tonight.   Whatever I choose and whatever happens I will try to report back before Tuesday, when we go for our first session of counselling, I think that may well be a post all of it's own.

Friday, 30 November 2012

Looking up

Not sure where things stand just at the moment.   I want to go to my support group Christmas dinner on Saturday evening, I had already arranged that our family calender showed that I would be out playing a concert that none of my family would want to go to.   So should I carry on as originally planned or cancel and say I had put in a dep so I could spend time with my wife? Either way I would be telling a lie.   Either way was not happy, neither seemed to be a satisfactory way to restart our relationship.

So I spent much of my time at work yesterday morning thinking abut this problem.   It comes down to  what do I want more to go out to dinner, or to save my marriage, this may sound like a no brainer, but I have always believed that there is no point in having the cake if you can't eat it.   Of course the answer was a simple one in the end, so in the spirit of honesty and trust I felt I had to tell my wife about the dinner I was planing on going to on Saturday, that I thought she would prefer me not to go, and since our daughter would be out would she like me to take her out, or cook a nice meal at home.   Since we are finding this all very difficult to talk about face to face I sent this all on a text message, I got a message back just saying "You go" I will be very happy to go, it will be the first time I will have been out as Paula and not had to lie about it, or at least hide it.   I will not be open I will still go trough my usual slightly furtive procedure and change before I get home.   I just hope that the message wasn't missing the last two words "to Hell"

Still, I think that this is a sign of a positive improvement in our relationship, since things came out into the open we have been much easier with each other, I think agreeing to talk and have counselling has been a big help, I am now looking forward to Tuesday when we visit Relate for the first session.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Progress

We have agreed that we do not want to give up on our marriage and will be going to counselling, our first session is on Tuesday.   In the mean time I am meant to be going to my group's Christmas dinner on Saturday, I am now not sure whether I should go or not, sort of should I try and be strong now, or should I have a little "final fling"?

On  a lighter note more from the excellent 9 Chickweed Lane

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Ultimatum

When I got back from a meeting had first thing this morning I found that my wife had left a letter for me~ never a good sign ~ basically this was a "give up or get out" ultimatum.   I am very sad that I have been so selfish not to have realised that things had got that bad, and very sad that she feels the need too go this far.

I have replied with what I hope is a considered and full response, I am not prepared to give up on our marriage, and will do everything I can to save it.   I am however not sure that I should promise to do what I probably can't do.   We have never been good at communicating~indeed that is one of the reasons I started this Blog ~ but I think we need to start getting better.   I think we need to get some counselling and have suggested we go to "Relate"

I need to concentrate on this so my posts may be a little sporadic, non existent, or extensive and self indulgent at the moment I just don't know.

More Black dresses

Yesterday was a good day, it feels to strange to start like that when the weather so bad that I had to cancel all my arranged work, which has, of course put me further behind, as I had planned to have S working with me I am now three days on this week alone.   Anyway once I had made my decision about work I could make my phone calls and plan my day.   Since P was available I arranged to meet  her for lunch.
I took my time getting ready and had an uneventful trip down to Crawley, as P is moving on Friday this will be the last time we do this.   We had a pleasant lunch a bit jewelry shopping for P and a look around the shoe stores for me.   I still couldn't find anything that I like at a price I am prepared to pay ~ I may well have to compromise soon.   We also popped into Matalan, I wanted to try these dresses on in a size 16, I had tried the long one on in a different store, but the largest size they had was a 14, and I wanted a second opinion, i.e is the split in the long dress too high, and likewise is the hemline of the skater dress too high.   The store we went to had neither dress in stock in any sizes at all, this is probably a good thing as I could well have ended up buying at least one of them, when I really do have no use for yet another black dress.
I stopped of on the way home for a glass of wine (or two) and started reading a book P had recommended and lent to me "This Charming Man" by Marian Keyes, it's a bit early to tell yet but is quite fun so far.   Then home, to be greeted by the "cold shoulder" I had left out my nail polish quick dry spray and my wife was in a sulk about it, knowing what I do is hard enough for her t accept, she really does not want to see any evidence of it.   I shall have to find a way of making up for this a bit, I don't think flowers are going to cut it, and I am out tonight, she is out tomorrow, then I am out again Saturday night and my daughter and I are both out on Sunday, could be a tough few days now.
At least I will get my physical aches sorted out today when I visit the Osteopath.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

More Silver

I haven't been up long, but it is now 8:30 and it's not light yet.   It doesn't look like it will get light at all today.   It's raining steadily and looks set to continue throughout mos of the day.   Looks like I shall have to cancel another day's work.

On the other hand I now have a big decision to make ~ shall I have lunch with P or with S?  or maybe I will meet S for a coffee before driving down to Crawley to meet P for lunch.

Yesterday afternoon I went into Croydon, I wanted to get my eyebrows threaded ready for Saturday night, so I was not wearing a wig and only had on mascara and lip gloss in the way of makeup.   Under my long overcoat I was wearing a pair of jeans and a tunic sweater with a cowl neck and some boots with a Cuban heel, so I suppose that without the big earrings I was a bit androgynous.   I noticed that I got a few more looks than usual.   After getting my eyebrows done I stopped by a Lancome counter to get some fresh foundation (I wanted something not too heavy but with good coverage), one I had foundation on it was quite noticeable that I was getting less attention from passers by ~ a clear lesson for me there.   I have worried about wearing too much makeup but this seems to make it clear that I do need to at least have some foundation and lipstick or gloss.

I am also after a pair of black shoes to wear in boy mode, but would prefer to buy women's.   On Saturday night the soles of my formal shoes parted company with the uppers, and this is not a good look with a DJ.   As I don't wear a suit for work anymore I only really wear black shoes when performing so I don't want to spend a fortune, but I would like some that respectable and are comfortable.   Clark's in Croydon had some very nice brogues that would have done nicely, but I don't like brogues with a dinner jacket, everything else I see I either like the uppers and not the sole/heel, or I like the sole/heel and not the uppers, maybe I will be a bit luckier when I go out today.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Every silver lining has a cloud

It looks as though Monday will be rainy, the BBC on line forecast shows heavy rain from eight in the morning to seven in the evening, with just the odd time of heavy showers to lighten the day.   I had planed a day's gardening, but it doesn't look as though I will be able to do much on that front, so I will be otherwise occupied.

I do have a fair bit of office work to do, but I may well take some out with me (the advantage of a laptop) and I also have some laundry to attend to.   It feels like some time since I have been out so I want to make the most of Saturday evening (my support groups Christmas dinner).   I plan to glam it up a fair bit, (if the pole falls on the side of sexy then I will also be wearing an ankle chain) I don't need to worry about blending as a whole group of us in company tends to stand out a bit.   One tall woman with strong features OK but seven or eight all over five foot ten is a bit obvious.   This makes me realise why some girls may not want to come to meetings of groups like this, I suspect that one cross dresser can blend, when I am in the company of a genetic girl I know I am accepted where ever I go, I suspect that two or more cross dressers together become more apparent, then more self conscious.   There is also the suspicion that this is just a way of making the closet bigger, if we are not out in the real world, dealing with civilians in the company of our less gender diverse friends then are we still in hiding?

Going to the support group did make it easier for me to continue to go out and extend myself building my self confidence and giving me reasons to go out, but for many of the girls it is the only place they feel they can dress and be with other people.   This is not really freedom, just a less restricting confinement.

Still, I had only intended commenting on the possible weather and the possibility of a small outing I would like to have a final lunch with my friend P before she moves, and there are one or two bits of shopping I want to do, I will have to see how the week works out.

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Random Thoughts

Last night was something of a triumph, people laughed at my jokes, listened intently to my daughters songs, and clapped afterwards.   We all enjoyed ourselves and it was very gratifying to have a lot of thank yous from a lot of people afterwards ~ inevitably this all means that we will be doing it all again in a few months.   I will admit that I enjoy performing, I like being the centre of attention and I love trying to be funny, so standing up and having people laugh at my jokes is pretty cool, but I recon that playing in the backing band for my daughter is just about the coolest thing any 50 something year old bloke can ever do.

By the end of the evening I was feeling a bit drained, very happy with what we had done, a little tired but not sleepy, so we sat down together as a family, opened a bottle of wine and munched through a large bag of crisps watching "The X Factor".   For once I quite enjoyed the show (maybe because I was now fairly chilled out) even though I can't work out how the people who are left are there and some of the others aren't.   Knowing that I was not on any rotas for the morning it was nice to know that I didn't have to go to Church in the morning and could have lie in.

Because I didn't need to of course I did wake up (the only one in the family who did) and I did go to Church, I remember being particularly thankful that I was not on the rota for prayer ministry, I just planned to sit at the back share communion, and worship.   God had other plans, at the end of the sermon there was an impromptu alter call, and I ended up praying for several people.   This is a real privilege but I can find it a bit draining.   Both during and after the service I couldn't help but notice what people, well the ladies really, and a lot of the ladies were wearing boots today, I like boots and it was nice to see, but some of them were also pretty ugly, I have said before that I very much like the current fashion for tunics,, or short dresses with skinny jeans, leggings or thick tights with boots.   I like it so much that I have a pair of boots on order, I hope they arrive soon.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

All Change

Being a bit of a girl myself I understand when my daughter will go through several changes of clothes in one day ~ generally it is a bit of a girl thing, making sure that the clothes match the occasion and the mood.   As a girl I will delight in the difference that clothes can make, the different colours, textures and styles, the way they can affect how I feel and behave.   At this point many cross dressers will tell you that on the other hand boy clothes are just boring and are only worn for warmth.   Well I'm not that boy.

I have a number of shirts that I am very fond of, I like a soft cotton print shirt, but am very fussy about the pattern.   I like a well cut jacket and trousers that fit well, I like clothes which ever gender they are made for, sure there are ugly male clothes, but then there are ugly female clothes as well ~ leggings come to mind straight away, very few can carry them off ~ I would love to see more cross over between what women and men wear, Women can wear pretty much any male clothing, but much of what women wear is still off limits to most men, I am not just thinking of dresses and skirts but shoes and boots, styles of jumper are limited.   I have got into the habit of wearing women's jeans and polo neck sweaters, I also have a pair of women's boots with a Cuban heel that I like to wear, but I have received a few comments, mostly favorable but it does get noticed.   I have on order a pair of low heel bots with a side zip and lace up at the back, I will have to see if I can wear them as a boy or if they will be limited to girl outfits.

Today I will be going through at least three outfits, all as the boy, when I do eventually get round to getting dressed it will be jeans and a casual top probably a black red and white hooped rugby jersey from a club I used to play for, that should see me through to getting ready to present this evenings cabaret.   I have not made a final decision yet but I will probably either wear a dinner jacket with a black shirt and black bow tie, or a shiny light grey suit wit a solid colour shirt (pink or blue) and tie.   During the second half of the show my daughter is doing a short set of a couple of Amy Winehouse songs with a rock band, I will be playing trombone in the horn section and it has been decided that we will be wearing "Blues Brothers" outfits of black suits, white shirts and black straight ties.
Hosting a cabaret in more hersute times
Apart from the fun of changes of clothes, and the challenge of being the MC for this event I think playing in the backing band for my daughter is quite possibly the coolest thing I have ever done.

The post has just arrived and I have received some padding I was anxious to receive before going out next Saturday night ~ that's a relief, and there is also an acknowledgment of my daughters application to the Brit School, we ow have a very anxious few months waiting t find out if she has got in.

Friday, 23 November 2012

I just don't know

I am very thankful (just to keep the theme going) to have had a good week's weather and have been making the most of it work wise.   As a consequence I have finished the working week tired and sore, but at least I have not fallen further behind with my work.  

Having missed out on my visit to the Osteopath last week, I a really looking forward to seeing him next Wednesday.   I have stopped deliberately setting out to tease him with what I wear, so I am pretty relaxed about what clothes I take off, but I do still like to make sure that I look OK when I am stripped down, this means that I do not want to have a body covered with stubble, and that my pant(ie)s should be clean and if my toe nails are painted they are in good order.   I will be going out next Saturday for my support group's Christmas Dinner when I will want to "glam it up" so I may want to prepare what I can in advance, so toes nails.......yep could could well be painted on Wednesday.

The Christmas dinner is the main social event we have so I will want to take advantage of the occasion, I think I will wear my black and silver cocktail dress my new silver shoes and depending on the outcome of the pole a ankle chain.   Of course I may wear my new mauve dress and some black shoes, or one of the LBDs, decisions decisions decisions.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Baffled!

I am bewildered, confused and disappointed. I have just heard about the decision of the General Synod not to go ahead with legislation to allow Women Bishops.   It is a shame that such a small proportion of the Church have the ability to block this essential development and damage the credibility of the entire Church at the same time.   The Bishops, the Clergy and the vast majority of the membership of the Church are all agreed, but a small proportion of highly conservative reactionaries can cause so much harm.

Psst does my bum look big in this
If they are not prepared to accept the will of majority and the authority of the Bishops and clergy then maybe it is time that they left the Church and allowed us to be a relevant authoritative and credible voice in society.   I am highly attached to the Church of England I am wedded to the concept of a universal servant Church, a church were every person has an ordained minister and a Church family to which they can belong, everyone in the Country has a local Parish Church with all that that entails.   Bishops sit in the House of Lords to give voice to the concerns of the community of faith, the Archbishops can ensure that Christian principles are at least aired at the highest levels, while still serving the whole community, yet this decision puts all of that at risk.   I foresee that Parliament will not accept this decision and will act anyway, this will be more divisive than anything that could have come out if they had gone ahead.

I think these cartoons show the sort of thinking that voted down the measure.

Rant

It is a while since I have had an on-line rant, I have been quite placid now for a some time, but I feel the need, the pressure is building up and the needs to be released.   I try not to get irritated, but every so often something comes up that I feel I just cannot let go past.

SO what is my target for opprobrium today, politicians? journalists? Estate Agents? Girls in leggings? members of the Church of England who can't accept women as Bishops? no, it is none of these, although I am sure that a modern enlightened Mikado could a punishment to fit their crimes, no it is my fellow bloggers.   

I like to read what you are writing, what you are thinking, I love the Internet, and the way it enables us to self publish our thoughts to find the few (or for some the many) who are interested in what we write.   Given that the object of art is to communicate we bloggers are artists of the highest standing, we make our thoughts available to all of mankind, we lay ourselves open to criticism and comment, many of us actually welcome comment on what we craft.   Blogs can be subject specific, they can be diaries, they can be campaigns that change the world, they can be important or trivial, but please, please can they at least make an attempt to be grammatical.   I  can't spell, I know this and for the first part of my career I avoided jobs that would require me to write so that I would not have to admit to my dyslexia ( why is that such a difficult word to spell?). We now have spell checks on our computers, whether it be Google, Microsoft, apple or blogger the spell check is there.   However it will no tell you when you have spelt a word wrongly but have by accident hit another word. For example if you meant Latin but typed Lantern the spell check will not tell you.   I can see how this can happen, understand and forgive.  

But there is NO EXCUSE for typing your when you mean you're they are totally different words with totally different meanings.   Here is a tip for my fellow bloggers for the next week, every time you mean you are type that rather than you're once you are in the habit, you will remember that Your is the first person possessive, and therefore means something totally different.   You're and Your may sound the same but do not mean the same, any more than whether, and weather or whet and wet or maybe even which and witch.

Please, please, PLEASE remember that the purpose of language is to communicate, and when you use the wrong word you you fail to communicate.


(I am particularly proud of opprobrium)

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Lingerie

I wish I had found this picture to illustrate this post it is just so sexy, this is serious lingerie, enticing and, well it is just, err  it's, err  well.......................

Monday, 19 November 2012

30 days to go

After the last couple f weeks, today felt a bit like "Welcome back to the real world".   Basically a day of sitting in heavy traffic, lots of heavy work, a little time at home and then a brass band rehearsal.   I managed to miss the rain, but will probably catch it tomorrow.

When I got home I was so weary I could have sat down on the sofa and gone to sleep, if  I hadn't had to go out soon afterwards.   Instead I ran a hot bath had a soak and relaxed, even though I have no anticipated opportunities to go out lined up while I was in my bath I had a good all over shave.   When ever I shave always like to moisturize afterwards, whatever it is that has been shaved, so after I got out of my bath I rubbed myself all over with Dove, and began to feel much better.   So0 much s that by the time I got to my rehearsal I was feeling quite perky.   We are starting to look at Christmas music already, it does seem early but there are only five week left till Christmas, that's 30 shopping days!

The other day my daughter told me that what she wanted for Christmas was a nose piercing.   I am not enthusiastic, no I am down right opposed!   Although I did suggest that if she did get one done then I woudl go and get my ears done at some point she may well get this done and not regret it, I just feel that at 15 she is still to young, she is also keen on getting a tattoo, I am really against that one.  So I plan to get her some stick on nose jewels, I know it will not be the same but maybe a bit of a peace offering.   I also plan to get her a couple of guitar straps, a nice subtle black leather one with big meal studs for her electric, and a fabric one for her electro~acoustic.   This is not just e being a good dad, I also want my strap back now I seem to be playing the bass fairy regularly.

I don't yet know what I will be buying my wife, but I do know it won't be tickets for Donny and Marie Osmond at the O2, the only tickets left are well over £100 and a couple of those are well out of my price bracket.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

What were they thinking?

I have just got round to watching my recording of yesterday's England against Australia Rugby International.   There is much to discuss about the game, decision making, refereeing of the scrum, payer discipline, ball retention, and many other aspects of the play; however I don't think this is the fora for that sort of discussion.   What I want to raise here is the blooming awful strip the England team were forced to wear.   There is a pride about wearing your national strip, pulling on the white jersey must mean a lot to any English Rugby player.   The New Zealand team is consistently the best in world and is known by it's colours, the "All Blacks", Australians identify strongly with their "Green and Gold".   Arguably England have the best strip of all, white shirt, white shorts and black socks.   Instantly identifiable to anyone with any interest in rugby, and no other team plays in anything like the same colours.
So why on why on Earth did some idiot at HQ think it was a good idea to send "the boys" out to play in that ridiculous purple and gold?   Rugby is quite possibly the most manly of sports (that's why I played it!) so why choose a really pretty colour and then ornament it with gold?   What next? high heeled boots, suspenders on the socks?

Thomas Waldron
Gratuitous Lingerie picture
This would be a great colour scheme for a lingerie set, maybe a nice satin camisole with matching french knickers, or maybe a lace three piece bra pantie and suspender set.   Something I might wear but I just can't or at least don't want to, see Thomas Waldren (England no 8) in anything even remotely resembling this.

Lingering longingly over lovely lingerie

I just discovered a new word, over on He Wears Panties a rather silly site I like to visit, they have coined the word lingerista.   Personally I think I will admit to being one, I love lingerie, I love the look of it and I love the feel of it, I like to see others wearing  lingerie and I love to wear it myself.

So what do I mean by lingerie? Chambers rather unhelpfully defines the word simple as "Women's underclothes" for me there is all the difference in the world between the satin and lace, the frills and fripperies of true lingerie and the simple practicality of underwear.   In a life when so much is simply down to functionality it is a small, but significant joy to have something necessary but totally frivolous.   For me there are a few prerequisites for lingerie, they should be a set, they should not be too practical, a necessity for a few adjustment here and there during the course of the day (or maybe more to the point the evening) just add to the fun, for all concerned.   Decoration is not important, it is vital, some piping a few bows, maybe some lace and mesh, by the very nature of lingerie it should be silly fun, frothy and frivolous.   Of course the ultimates in impracticality are often the ones that are most fun to wear, and to see being worn, basques, stockings and suspenders, teddies, negligees, so I bet we nearly all have nearly all of those in our knicker draw.

Without these fun unnecessary attributes these items fall into the practical, the merely underwear, they become the mentionables where they should be the unmentionables, if you chose your underwear for comfort and warmth then it is probably not lingerie. On the other hand of course this whole post could just be a rather contrived excuse to post some pictures of pretty girls with not a lot of clothes on ~ as if I would do anything like that.   All photos courtesy of figleaves.com
On a different note I had a little time the other day and happened to find myself outside a branch of Matalan, one of my favorite shops, so I popped in.   They have a dress I have seen advertised that I liked the look of and wanted to try on to see how it looked.   This branch didn't have it in my size (16) but I was feeling ambitious so I tried a size 14.   It was a little snug  but looked great, I think a size 16 would be fabulous, and I want it, I want it, I want it.   Accepting the risk of sounding like a petulant 14 year old I want this dress, but, and here's the snag I can think of no occasion where I am likely to have the opportunity to wear it.   I need to be asked to some posh do, a diner dance or formal reception, anything, then I can justify the (not really substantial) cost of the dress.   Even if I only wore it once I would be happy.   There, you see what a shallow girl I can be.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

A post without a title

Wednesday mid day and I get the call to help my friend P move her log pile from Crawley to Lincolnshire, so after a meeting with some local authority officers I got back to Croydon at about five thirty and then had to make my way down to Crawley load up and then drive to Lincolnshire before unloading and then making the return journey with both P and her husband.   And for most of the journey there was fairly thick fog.   I had planned on a visit to the osteopath and then going to rehearsal with my Band in Croydon, instead of getting my aches seen to I ended up acquiring some fresh ones.   I know it's stupid but I ended up craning my neck forward driving in the fog, when I got home around five O'clock in the morning my neck was stiff I was tired, and all I could do was collapse into bed.

I had taken a couple of changes of clothing with me, the first one to get changed out of the suit I wore to my meeting into something more sensible for shifting a wood pile, the second change was for my God Mother's funereal on Thursday, and some pjs, in case I didn't make it home.   It had all happened so quickly that I took the wrong clothes with me, and didn't need them anyway since I did make it home.   I did manage to get up in time and made the journey to Oxfordshire in time. it was a very good and very appropriate service, my God Mother knew she was going to die so made all the arrangements for the service with her good friend, the vicar.   It was nice to have the service conducted by someone who not only knew her, but was a close personal friend.   Afterwards chatting to some other members of the family it struck me that the last time I had met most of them had been at my God Mother's Mother's funeral, I suppose that is a factor of us all getting older.

The plan was that I would make the drive back to London Pretty, and then as both my wife and daughter would be out I would meet up with my friend B, to catch up and maybe have a bite to eat, as it was while I was making my way back through the London rush hour I got a call from my wife telling me my daughter would be home after all, so I decided to cancel meeting up with B and spend the night with my daughter.   As it happened she went to bed early and I feel asleep on the sofa.

When she has moved I will miss my friend P, she has been instrumental in giving Paula the confidence to go out, to start enjoying life, I shall miss our lunches and our shopping expeditions, I shall miss the intimacy of a girl's girl friend.   As I was working with her today I mentioned to my friend S that I would miss having someone to have lunch with, she said, well that can be me when I'm not working, aren't people wonderful!