Today is the last day of my holiday. It’s been a busy but good holiday. The wedding that I blogged about a couple of week ago, was the start of it. And then we went off to Greenbelt. Being on site from the Tuesday was quite interesting – when I got there most of the racecourse was empty of tents. The big tents were all up, but none of the stalls, decorations, main stage or thousands of people were there yet! It was quite odd on Friday when so many people arrived and we were none longer camping in an empty field. I was part of the ‘site vibing’ team, who made and put up most of the decorations around site. Giving the site it’s vibe. I had to work Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and the following Tuesday. It was good fun and satisfying when the site looked pretty, but was also hard work. I re-learnt how to drill, saw and spray paint, among other things. Nobody had ever let me loose with a spray can before! And now my boots are tinged with (Hebron) red… All the big venue signs were handmade from stratch, although on site we only finished them off – a lot of the work had been done in the month before Greenbelt. We’re now hoping that they keep the venue names the same for next year! For those who weren’t there, I’ll try to put some photographs of signs below.
I spray painted both of these signs, the Festival Bowl one took an awful lot of masking tape… Oh, and the Hebron sign was actually going vertical off the ground – the photo needs to be flipped by 90 degrees to be accurate, but it’s easier to read this way! There were lots of other signs but I won’t bore you with all of them.
When we’d finished packing all the decorations at about 4.30 on Tuesday, I caught the train back home and spent the next few days catching up on washing, sorting through paperwork and relaxing. On Friday night we went to a lovely birthday party of a friend. It was at a local pub which has an old fashioned Skittles lane! After you’d had your three turns at trying to knock down the skittles, you had to walk down the isle and stand all the skittles back up and put the balls on the ramp that would return them to the throwing point! It was great fun. Mr B ended up with the highest individual score with 33, and I was chuffed that I’d managed to get 29. We were in two teams, but when we added up the scores for each team, both teams had ended up with exactly the same score!! Much to some people’s disguntlement, the birthday girl decided to leave it at that.
Then on Saturday we packed our bags again and headed to Birmingham where we spent the rest of the day with friends of ours, who have 2 teenagers and a 7 year old, so the day was enjoyable but lively. On Sunday we said goodbye to them, and headed off to the Moseley Folk Festival. We had a lovely day, lying on the grass listening to music and relaxing. It reminded me of afternoons at Cropredy – as there’s only one stage area theres no need for the long walks in between veunues that you get at Greenbelt, and there’s much more chance to chill out with a book. It was a much smaller festival than both Cropredy and Greenbelt, so it felt more intimate. Given the main stage’s requirements at Greenbelt, it’s difficult to then make it into a space where people can take picnic blankets, chairs and a book. I have seen people doing this at the main stage at Greenbelt, but a more intimate space, like the one at Moseley, is much more welcoming to this activity. I was also impressed with little things at Moseley – like they gave away a free CD with 15 songs from the artists from the weekend with the £5 programme. And the music of course was good, I especially enjoyed Cara Dillon. The only real crititism that I had was that there didn’t seem to be quite as much energy in the audience as I’d expect. Often when artists tried to interact with the audience and get them to make a bit more noise, the audience didn’t really respond. Maybe this comes from the more chilled out atmosphere, I don’t know… Or maybe it livened up more after we’d left – we had to leave towards the end of Cara’s set as we had to drive home. Photographs of Moseley Folk might have to wait a few days – they’re still on my camera!
Anyway, it’s been a very good holiday. Just hoping that work isn’t *quite* as busy as it was in the week before my holiday…
So yesterday evening it finally felt like my birthday. 🙂 Many of my friends from here and a couple from uni, came to have a BBQ at our house. Anna’s present to me was that lovely hand painted banner, you see above, which I’ll be able to use every year now!
For complicated reasons, we were storing an event shelter in our flat, so we decided to make the most of this and put it up in the garden. We then put old rugs and a blanket out on the ground, with our coffee table and cushions on top. Our hammock was also under the shelter, so people enjoyed sitting there, as well as on a few chairs. With the fairy lights, outdoor lanteens and one other lamp when it got dark, it made for a cosy evening. Everybody said they really enjoyed themselves and I know I certainly did!
If anyone is particularly interested in looking at lots of pictures of excavated Roman sites then let me know! I took quite a few photos on holiday, although surprisingly enough hardly any of them seemed to have The Wall in them. I think this was because it took two and a half days of walking to get to the first bit of wall, the fourth day we had a semi-rest day, and we didn’t see very much of it on day five and six. There was lots of other interesting stuff though! And some gorgeous scenary.
Last week we took a trip to the Lake District, and I spent a lot of time sitting in the car, admiring the amazing autumn colours. They were just so rich and diverse. And then I came home and discovered the tree in the neighbours garden was bright orange. A perfect view from my bedroom. The photos below were the best I could find to illustrate the colours – they were taken last autumn, as I unfortunately didn’t manage to get any colourful ones from the lakes.
Just an excuse to test out how you can get photos up here…
If you’d like me to, I might put some more up tomorrow.
The first person to guess the secret behind the dragonfly photo below will receive a prize.*
*Terms and conditions apply:-
You must guess before or during Greenbelt and you must be at Greenbelt to receive your prize. Apologies to Aussie Wibloggers and others who are unlikely to be at Greenbelt.
D, M and Big Sis are banned from guessing.
I graduated yesterday. 10 months after finishing uni. The delay was due to the fact we finished in August, so we had to wait till the following year’s graduation to actually go through the ceremony. And now we have to wait several more months before receiving our certificates. It was weird in some ways, graduating so long finishing – it didn’t feel quite real. But on the other hand, it was nice to go back and see my coursemates, lecturers and meet up with friends. I spent 2 nights in Swansea, so I was able to do the Brynmill / uni rounds (sorry if I didn’t get to you!).
Overall the experience was just that – an experience. A lot of the time I felt like someone out of Harry Potter, with this silly gown and hat on. Apparently it looked even more Harry Potterish when I clambered through the trees to the beach in my gown. Some of the lecturers were acting as stewards to show the graduates where to walk, and they were all carrying big metal wands, which really did look like something out of Harry Potter, especially as they were gowned up too. Although, I believe we had more lecturers attending the ceremony than any other ceremony. Which is quite good.
I had some nice chats with a few of my lecturers afterwards, and I visited my supervisor the day before. My old supervisor was embarrassing when she started talking to my Mum afterwards. She was my supervisor with my dissertation in my 3rd year, and as many readers will know, this period wasn’t exactly the smoothest of times in my life. My supervisor, for a variety of reasons, became an important support mechanism. Anyway, she was telling my parents how proud she was of me, for getting through everything and for coming out with a 2:1. I just blushed and started talking to someone else. But thinking back, I don’t think I could have done half of what I did without the support of so many friends and family. So I’d just like to take this opportunity to say a big THANK YOU. Whether you cooked a meal, sent a card, gave me a hug, lent a listening ear, took me to pizza hut or were simply there – you helped. As my supervisor once said, I had a football stadium full of supportive people, and I’ll never forget that.*
After sitting through the boring ceremony and using all available trees, beaches and backdrops for photos, I was relieved of my silly gown, and we went down to Bracklet Bay for a very nice meal. I ate loads of yummy food and drank more than my share of wine, and it was good 🙂 As co-incidence would have it, about 6 of my friends from my course had also chosen the same restaurant for a celebratory meal, so it was nice to have another chance to say hello and goodbye to them!
And I thought you might like to see some pics…
* Apologies if you don’t have a clue what I’m talking about!