Where in the name of holy balls did that come from?
The clocks have gone forward and I’m looking back at the past 7-10 days wondering where the time has gone, and how I can get it to slow down.
As it’s been nine days of ups, downs and in-betweens since my last waffle, here’s a look at how I ended the month of March – for anyone sat at home wondering how I ended the month of March…*
*Downs have been edited out, because who really wants to read about that shit?
I hate to pander to gender stereotypes, but I know little to nothing about cars.
This is especially upsetting when the following things happen to your ol’ reliable Ford Fiesta that your mother-in-law helped you buy:
- The inside of the car begins to smell like petrol; you own a diesel car
- There’s an audible rattling from under the bonnet that friends, family, and the neighbours three doors down take great pleasure in pointing out to you as you rumble down the road
- The driver’s side door handle falls off, and you spend a week climbing into the back of the car to open the door. Something that will prompt several bemused glances from your fellow shoppers in Tesco car park…
When all the above befell me in the space of one week, I threw a right royal strop and decided it was time to go car shopping.
“So, you’re jumping the queue again,” Alex said, coupled with an eyeroll heard across the North West.
He was right, of course. His clutch had been on the way out for at least six months, if not longer, but I had rationalised that him working from home 90% of the time bought me a ticket to the front of the line, what with having to brave the M6 northbound on a daily basis…
I’d seen three cars I liked. A Nissan Juke, a Dacia Duster, and the Renault Captur. When my MD asked what I was looking for in a car a few days before my shopping trip, I provided an embarrassingly stereotypical female response, unbecoming of a modern woman with a career and a brain capable of independent thought:
“Bluetooth. And a nice colour.
“And I wouldn’t mind being higher up off the road, so the crumple zone is a little broader than just ‘my face’.”
Second eyeroll, heard across the North West.
Still, all three models met my Clarkson-esque standards for what I deem to be an acceptable motor, so I was satisfied I knew just enough to get me through a trip to the garage.
That weekend we ventured 10 minutes down the road to the Nissan showroom, and sure enough there was a three-year-old Nissan Juke ready for test-driving. The previous owner had given it up after three years on PCP, and had clearly spent some cash upgrading the interior, which was home to a black and red trim, rear cameras for reversing, built-in satellite navigation and the all-important Bluetooth.
As I got it out on the road, I remembered why I’m always nervous test-driving cars; the obligatory salesperson must accompany you out of the showroom, factor. Seriously, when your motoring knowledge is virtually nil, and you’re in an unfamiliar vehicle, do you really want Joseph Stalin watching over your shoulder asking you ‘how you find the drive’?
Well, Dave, that’s rather like asking me to taste the wine before you serve it to me in the restaurant. You can ask, but I’m still going to say ‘it’s fine’ because being real, I haven’t a shitting clue what it is I’m being asked to evaluate.
Despite the lavish interior, the Nissan Juke wasn’t going to cut it. The previous owner had been a smoker, so we gave them the oft trotted out, ‘we’ll go and have a think about it over lunch’ line, and of course never returned.
An hour later I was sat in the Arnold Clark showroom, signing the next four years of my life away to a flame-red Renault Captur that had stolen my heart, and instantly felt a tonne of relief that I’d no longer have to worry about Fred Flintstoning it down the road in my old Fiesta.
“Is the part-ex deal conditional on what state the car is in?” Alex asked, with all the subtlety of an unsubtle person.
Thankfully on collecting my new car, I’d left the door handle in the glove box so at least I’ve handed over all the component parts to make it functional again.
So long, old friend!
Having gone through a phase of wearing super bright eyeshadow in my early 20’s – something which subsided when I really began to hit my stride in work – the past 12 months has seen me renew my love of eye-shadow palettes, pigments, and anything that glitters.
Don’t misread me. I’ve never been the girliest of girls; but as far back as I can remember I’ve always loved the idea of costumes and dressing up, because it just wasn’t something I ever felt comfortable doing in the daylight.
In fact Halloween is one of my favourite times of the year because, aside from the horror element (which I’ve always loved) it’s the one time when you can wear something outlandish and it becomes socially acceptable.
After becoming obsessed with websites like Cult Beauty and Beauty Bay – to which I have unashamedly lost more than a few pounds over the past year (more than can be said for my waistline) – I was delighted to see Jeffree Star announce the launch of his brand new Blue Blood collection, including a new eyeshadow palette with 18 shades.
Whilst I still have yet to get hold of the iconic Blood Sugar palette, I was able to call in reinforcements (namely my big sis, Lora), to grab one of these online as I drove home from work Friday night. Now all I have to do is wait for it to arrive, and cry with joy when I get to unbox it.
It’s the little things…
This is a strange day of the year for me now that I’m in my fourth decade of living, and several of my friends are celebrating this for themselves rather than just posting about how excellent their mums are all over social media (although that still happens).
In a most unusual turn of events, I opted to host a Sunday roast at our house with my mum, aunt, sister, and Sam, while Alex made a pilgrimage to test drive the car he had his eye on.
There was one condition, however, for hosting at our house; my mum wanted to do the cooking.
I’m ambivalent about having anyone else use our kitchen for the following reasons:
- I feel a massive sense of relief that there’s no pressure on me to ‘perform’ to a certain culinary standard
- I feel utterly impotent when I’m unable to have some say over the result which, for someone who’s as big a control freak as me, is like asking me to jump out of a plane without a parachute
One large G&T and a prosecco later however, and I was only too glad to play utensil monkey while mum took the reins.
I spent the few hours foraging for pans as needed, topping up drinks, eating Pringles, and chatting to my mum about her job and my grandad’s incontinence, while she lovingly siphoned juice off the chickens to make the gravy.
A few highlights from my day were:
- Digging out the old ‘red brush’; a family ‘heirloom’ of sorts that mum had done each of our hairdo’s with as kids; and watching Lora have her hair braided
- Tasting mums roast potatoes and gravy, and being transported back to the good old days of family Sunday lunches before we all grew up, got our own houses, and divorce made a right royal balls up of such events
- Browsing through the photo album of pics taken at our wedding reception. On disposable cameras. By the guests and what was then a three and a half-year-old Sam
All in all a great afternoon was had, and I even got to take leftover chicken sandwiches to work today, which makes four hours in the kitchen worth every single second.
Oh, and I got to spend quality time with the fam. Which is a bonus.
If you can be arsed, why not let me know how your week has been in the comments below?