Wednesday, 14 December 2011

In search of a Russian Oligarch.....?

I guess one of the advantages of not being married nor having had children is that rather selfishly I really only have myself to think about. My life decisions affect just little ole me which gives me the freedom to make radical changes. So 6 months ago I decided to change my life. I handed in my notice from my office job, gave up my apartment and moved back home and embarked on a quest to find out what it is I wanted to do for the rest of my years on this planet. When I announced this news to friends and family the consensus was that I was very brave but I didn't see it like that at all. There is nothing brave about gambling when you have nothing to lose. A little scared and anxious from time to time? Well yes as I spent many a sleepless night wondering what would become of me but stubbornly I kept a positive mind and believed all would turn out well in the end. I was in a position where I could pretty much go anywhere and do anything. I had no ties, very few financial commitments and some savings which bought me the most valuable of commodities.....time.

Ironically when you have numerous choices available to you, making a decision is nigh on impossible. The world is not only your oyster, it is a fairground of whirling merry go rounds and speedy rollercoasters. Knowing which ride to jump on and get the most enjoyment out of without too many stomach churning moments is akin to choosing lottery numbers that if you pick incorrectly you miss the jackpot!

For the first few months I concentrated on writing. Without the pressures of a stressful job to occupy the space in my head, my mind was free to wander and tap into an imagination that once unleashed threw out idea after idea to the point that I was writing three books at once! The writing continues today but I have sensibly chosen just one book to finish and to date I am a fifth of the way through. However, there is no guarantee that I will be published and as the months roll on and my savings dwindle I had to look for another fairground ride to jump on.

Some years ago I qualifed to teach English as a foriegn language but personal circumstances at the time prevented me from embarking on a teaching career.  The idea had crept into the back of my mind again about a year or so ago but I had ignored it's niggling presence, my own fears at the time refused it to be anything but a pipe dream. Now with the changes that I had made I decided to look in to this again. I tested the waters and volunteered to participate in two English Immersion Programmes in Spain and Poland. Whilst this was not strictly teaching in a classroom setting it did involve certain elements which required patience, understanding, quick thinking and enthusiasm. Most importantly it re-ignited my passion to teach.  I had hit the jackpot and spent the following weeks applying for numerous teaching jobs across the globe. My lack of experience went against me and I heard nothing from most of my applications. Thankfully after a few refusals and frustrating periods of radio silence my perserverance and positive thinking paid of.

On Sunday 18th December, 6 months after I quit my job and 10 years after I returned to the UK, I am boarding a plane to Moscow where I will work, teaching English to Russian folk before being shipped out to Siberia to continue to teach in a new school. The only Russian word I know is Vodka....but hey I always like making things difficult for myself and I'm sure it won't be long before I've learnt the words for "it's f***ing freezing here"!

I've always wanted to visit this once Imperial Land. It's unobtainable, out of reach existance gave it a mystical quality that has always fascinated me.  My life long ambition is to travel on the Trans-Siberian Express but I never in a million years thought I would work in the country responsible for its creation.

Where this fairground ride is taking me, I've no idea. How fast it will go and the thrills and spills it will bring along its way remain to be seen. One way to find out is to follow my new blog which will chart my life in Russia. I hope to bring to you a little piece of Russian culture, food, travel and people as you join me in my journey of discovery over at In search of a Russian Oligarch

The Modern Day Spinster will be taking a back seat for now and who knows should I find my Russian oligarch or even Russian prince (aim high) then our beloved Spinster can climb off her soap box and hide herself away. I want to thank all those who have taken the time to read my posts on here and especially those who took the time to leave encouraging positive comments. I hope to see you over at my new blog very soon.

Take Care



Saturday, 29 October 2011

"and they call it puppy lurve........."

Meet Charlie....

I'm having fun!
I love this little fella.  An adorable, cute, affectionate bundle of fun......everything a puppy should be. He's an 11 week old Working Spaniel and is the newly acquired addition to my sister and brother-in-laws home.  They both go out to work everyday while I stay at home and write which is pretty much impossible when this little guy needs constant supervision.  He's only been with us a week and whilst he's worked his way into our hearts big time, he's also worked his way into the kitchen cupboards, washing machine, plant beds and it won't be long before he attacks the fish pond!

We've made the house and garden as Charlie resistant as possible but he's getting more and more adventurous each passing day. This guy loves to chew and there's nothing he won't have a go at. Despite the plethitude of squeaky chewy toys that he's already accumulated, he'd rather get his puppy teeth into the cupboard corners, table and chair legs, radiotor valves, towels, garden wire and my feet (did I mention he's very brave too?!)
Mmmmm yum!

At the moment he is a machine.....a pee and poop machine that is.  Even though we 've taken every precaution to assist in his toilet training, if we don't get to him fast enough he's doesn't hang around crossing his legs and paws holding it way! Fortunately the kitchen floor is tiled and cleaning up his mess isn't a drama but in the first few days it was happening so frequently that once I'd put the rubber gloves on I didn't bother taking them off, there really was no point.
A new kind of smell has impregnated the house and I don't mean the smell of dog. This boy can fart and not in relation to the size of his body. The pungent throat clogging stench can only be described as evil and lingers in the air long after it's expulsion. It's hard to believe it was brewed within the inner workings of a little ball of fluff and not the decaying bowels of a dinasour.

The quality of my days are measured by the quantity of indoor little "accidents". If there have been none or very few then I've had a good day and if there have been alot then I've had a shit day......quite literally! Our conversation on an evening is no longer filled with everyday issues such as work, tv, dinner and general news. Now we discuss in minute detail Charlie's pee and poop. how many, how long between each one, solid poop or soft poop, the size and shape of his poop, does it resemble a chocolate covered sausage or dispensed lump of Mr Whippy ice cream and how far up the stinkometer etc etc. The scary thing is that it seems perfectly normal to talk like this in our all consuming Charlie bubble while the outside world ceases to exist.

We haven't spent a night on the comfy sofa in front of the TV since Charlie arrived. No we'd rather sit huddled in the kitchen watching him sleep, watching him eat, watching him drink, watching him play, watching him chew, watching him poop!! Are we obsessed? Yes, I think so.

And why is it we talk to each other as if Charlie was their child? My sister has become "mummy" my brother-in-law is "daddy" and I'm his aunty. Our brains are being turned into mush. Lord knows what the neighbours would think if they were to overhear me in the garden encouraging my "nephew" to poop and pee on the lawn "pee pee Charlie, do a pee pee please for aunty". Repeating a phrase like this is what they advise in the training manual yet I can't help but feel that whoever wrote this did so while laughing manically "mwahahahahaha!"

In truth, when the toilet training goes wrong and he leaves us a "present" on the kitchen floor or a table leg succumbs to his mauling mouth it is oh so easily forgiven because  "butter wouldn't melt" is what springs to mind as his eager face peeps from behind the gate, wagging his tail in excitement as he sees us. A sudden unknown noise and he darts to "hide" behind our legs.  Should we be standing at the kitchen counter making a drink or preparing food he will squeeze inbetween and snuggle down on our feet. And when he's tired he wants nothing more but to be cuddled in our arms and nuzzle his tiny head into our necks as he softly slumbers.

Yep this little fellla has us wrapped around his little finger (or claw) and who can blame us?

My favourite toy!

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Ahoy the good ship Talia...!

Earlier this year I had the good fortune to be invited to help crew a Catamaran for 10 days off the south coast of England. I had done some sailing in my years but these seafaring ventures were brief, few and far between. Clearly, however, I had involuntarily painted a different picture when in my alcohol induced state I discussed my love and experience of sailing with exaggerated aplomb through new forged friendships on a skiing holiday in Italy New Year 2011.

So when the invite landed in my inbox a few months later I gladly accepted with the hope that my 4 fellow crew mates were all "Old Salts" as it were and that a 5th member was more of an added bonus than a necessity. How wrong I was....!
On arrival I was informed that 1 male crew member had suddenly "abandoned ship" before even climbing on board due to unforseen cirumstances. This left a crew of 4 consisting of 1 male and 3 females. Our Captain (the only male) and Catamaran owner had thankfully 10 years sailing experience behind him. The other 2 crew members also had clocked up a fair few hours on the ocean waves. And so with my best barefoot forward I rose to the challange ahead and prepared myself to be "thrown in at the deep end" as it was quite literally "all hands on deck" for the next 10 days of our advenure at sea.

Harry's Rocks

Friday, 2 September 2011

Is age really just a number??

I have often been told that I look (and act) younger than I am. By rights I should look a very haggard 42 year old considering I have partied considerably hard since my teenage years but thanks to good family genes (and afew make-up tricks) I am still able to cling to the last vestiges of youth. And before time catches up with me and the copious amounts of alcohol, cigarettes and lack of sleep form deep etched lines and wrinkles in my face perhaps I should take advantage that my face still has some structure and is not yet a cloth sack. So next month I will turn 43 but have decided I will tell new acquaintances that I am 38, a full 5 years younger.

Why would I do this when I am actually not ashamed of my age? Well first of all to see if I could get away with it, I am taking a risk afterall. It would be such a knockback (and hilariously funny) if  I received shock responses and pitying looks that scream of "she must have had a hard paper round"!

In fact, I am curious to see if I would be treated any different as a woman in her late 30's than a spinster in her early 40's. They say that the forties are the new thirties so technically I wouldn't be lying. Would I attract the attention of younger people to me? Would it be more socially acceptable for me to hang out with people in their twenties? Does 38, never married and no children sound so much better and justifiable than 43, never married and no kids? Well it shouldn't but it does.

Age is used as a yardstick to measure how good you look, how much you have achieved and how healthy you are and what more you have left to offer the world.   No wonder so many people approach their 40th birthday with trepidation and a sense of "it's all downhill from here". Society dictates that you pretty much should have it all wrapped up by your forties. Education, travel, marriage and kids and that now "life begins" since the kids have flown the nest and  you can perhaps put yourself first for once. Take up hobbies or buy a holiday home and spend every weekend enjoying the freedom that "cutting the apron strings" brings. But what about those of us hurtling fast into our forties who got to first and second base but never quite obtained marriage and kids. Do we still go in search of that?  How are we depicted by society.....failures or life's Peter Pans?

Recently on a train I sat opposite two older ladies who had certainly been visited by the menopause and youth had long since waved "Sayonara". However, on striking up a conversation during the journey one of the ladies in particular was very entertaining, spirited and extremely funny. The twinkle in her eye outshone her weather worn wrinkled skin and grey hair. It was her spirit and character that captivated and attracted everyone around her. We all grow old but we don't have to be old. The quote below sums this up perfectly:

"Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years.  We grow old by deserting our ideals.  Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul".  ~Samuel Ullman

It really is what's inside that makes us who we are and not the number of years we have been on this earth. Our bodies are merely a temporarily home for a spirit that never ages and time has no bearing. If tomorrow I was granted two wishes, one to be in my thirties again but with about as much personality as a dripping tap or be forty +, spirited, enjoying life, open minded with a wicked sense of humour then I know I would chose the latter. Like attracts like after all and I feel very lucky to have met those kind of people whether they were twenty,  forty or sixty, it is irrelavant.

When the iconic beauty Audrey Hepburn was asked to give her beauty tips below is what she replied. 

  1. "For attractive lips speak words of kindness".
  2. "For lovely eyes, seek the good in people".
  3. "For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry".
  4. "For beautifulr hair, let a child run his or hers through it at least once a day".
  5. "For poise, walk with the knowledge that you never walk alone".
  6. "People, even more than things, have to be restored, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone".
  7. "Remember if you ever need a helping hand you'll find them at the end of each of your arms. As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself and the other for helping others".
  8. "The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides".
  9. "The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mode, but the true beauty of a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows".
  10. "The beauty of a woman grows with the passing years."
Contrary to what some may think, Audrey Hepburn did not write this beautiful poem, Sam Levenson did. Levenson wrote "Time Tested Beauty Tips" for his grandchild, and it just so happened to be one of Audrey's favorite poems. She read it to her children on the very last Christmas Eve she spent with us here on Earth.

I could however ignore every word of wisdom and reason to justify aging indiscreetly by doing this one very clever trick. I could tell every one I'm actually older! I would be a fabulous 50 year old. People would ask themselves "what's her secret?", "what moisturiser does she use", "what is her exercise regime", "what is her diet?". And as the years progress I would continue to look much younger than my ficticious age without going under the knife .... I would only have to stay looking older than my chronological age....easy. I could, therefore age not only gracefully but calmly and peacefully which in itself would take years off me, a win win solution don't you think?

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Summer Lovin'..............

Can you believe it .....summertime is whizzing by and almost over. In a little over 2 weeks the schools will start a new term, the evenings will grow darker and advertisements for Christmas will fill our TVs. Depressing I know. But as we look back and reflect on another typical wet and windy British summer I wonder how many returned from sunny, hot, far flung places, were hit by "Summer Lovin'"?

Hot temparatures, half naked bodies, cocktails and dancing ...... the perfect recipe to spark a holiday romance and bring "Sandy" to her "Danny".  The stresses and strains of everyday life are left far behind as we become chilled out, easy going, bronzed "happy" people. The sexiness of the Mediterranean to the exoticness of the Caribbean seduces, tantilises and makes "falling in love" fast and easy...all part of the holiday package.
But do they last? Is a holiday romance the start of something special or just fun in the sun?

All the ingredients  pretty much disappear as soon as the airplane hits the tarmac back at home. Sun replaces rain and days melting in to one are now structured and dominated by office hours.  What are the chances you live near to each other? Despite Facebook, Skype etc when everyday life gets in the way how long can you be bothered to make those long distant phone calls or even visit each other trying to rekindle the "connection" made under a burning sun?  Will you still lust after each other when the sun kissed half naked bodies turn a whiter shade of pale after being covered up against the cooler temperatures? How long before the novelty wears off?

You on holiday is unlikely to be 100% the same person you are at home. The fun loving carefree person on the beach maybe more stressed, hurried and serious in the cold light of day.  I mean that's why we go on holiday isn' relax? So it's pretty much expected that you will meet other relaxed people.

Some years back I had a holiday romance.  It lasted 9 months after we got back and during that time we even went back on holiday to where we first met. However, like any relationship when the first flush of romance wears off it depends whether there is enough leftover to work hard enough at keeping it going.

Generally speaking though the chances that you will be walking down the aisle with your holiday romance is pretty slim. It's called a holiday romance for a reason because really that's precisely what it is.

Friday, 5 August 2011

beauty and the mass media beast!

Looking back at my dating experiences I realise that the majority of men with whom I've gone out with, dated or had a relationship with, have been younger than me. I'm not talking about the Demi Moore - Ashton Kutcher 15 year age gap however but enough of a difference to put my self-consciousness on high alert. Facial lines appear more pronounced despite the plethora of anti aging creams in the bathroom cabinet and the once every 2 monthly visit to the hair salon increases to 4-6 weekly, should he,God forbid, find a stray grey hair or two.

The pressure to stay looking young is evident in all that we read in magazines and watch in movies or on TV however it is fiercly highlighted when dating a younger man. Referring back to Demi More and Ashton Kutcher's 15 year age gap, it is rumoured that she has spent £250k since 2007 on plastic surgery, liposuction and even knee surgery. If an A list Hollywood star, as naturally beautiful and talented as Demi Moore, feels the pressure to stay young looking for her toy boy husband, then what hope is there for the rest of us? Does Michael Douglas feel under pressure to embark on a quest for eternal youth in order to stop his stunning wife Catherine Zeta Jones runnning for the (Hollywood) hills? Apparantley so. It's been reported that he has undergone a face and brow lift. But even Catherine Zeta Jones herself has had help from the surgeon's knife in maintaining her beauty.

So is the pressure to literally peel back the years from having a younger spouse? or really from being in the fickle scrutinising eye of the mass media?

"Cougars" are the vastly growing number of savvy ladies on the hunt for younger men. This woman has the self confidence to command awestruck respect from her younger prey that she can manipulate him to go along with whatever she says. Enough life experiences have taught her what matters and what doesn't and she has faced her insecurities and fears. She is not going to bother her latest squeeze with feminine frivalities that often turn men off, ie: "Does my bum look big in this?". She knows what she looks good in and what to avoid. Probably most importantly for her less experienced partner, is that she can teach him a thing or two between the sheets...with the light on and not worrying about showing her stretch marks or cellulite I might add! She's there for a good time for as long as it lasts. No strings, no long term commitment. This seems to be a happy middle ground in recapturing your lost youth yet not worrying whether he sticks around or not.  No wonder "Mrs Robinson" is still such an iconic role model for these temptress ladies.

As a society though are we still made to feel a little uncomfortable at the thought of an older woman dating a much younger man?  Were eyebrows raised when Michael Douglas married Catherine Zeta Jones, 25 years his junior?Rod Stewert married Penny Lancaster with also a 25 year age gap? Not really. Some thought it may not last, the younger spouses wanting to stay up late and party perhaps. But these men bring alot to the table. Not just wealth but experience, maturity and most importanly less likely to stray. Turn the tables, however and we are not so readily able to accept such an age gap between an older woman and younger man.

But why? Because we have been brain washed by the mass media that beauty and youth are the only attributes that serve a woman. We have been led to believe that men are influenced first and foremost by physical beauty and not inner beauty. And yes even in the 21st century. Lets be honest ageism is very much alive and kicking down the self esteem of women and men eveywhere. You would be a liar and a fool to deny it. The proof? Just look in the magazines and shops. Anti wrinkle this and anti age that. The companies that make such products would not survive if we were not slaves to the beauty industry. Ladies, we are the ones who buy into this misconception that we are only as good as the moisturiser we use. And whilst I wholeheartedly subscribe to taking care of oneself both in health and appearance, I do not want to waste my life worrying whether I look 10 years younger than I really am.

Can you imagine a world where make up, hair dye, plastic surgery, botox, anti wrinkle creams  and designer clothers did not exist? In that world we would have to look for something else to act as our self worth. How about intelligence, sense of humour, kindness, patience and a positive outlook. Guess what? I already have these attributes and so do most  men and women out there. It's just a shame that they are not the primary focus in the mass media, the most powerful influence in our lives.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

over the top....has the fight against identity fraud gone too far?

I received a call recently from my credit card company. It was a callback that I'd requested in order to advise them I had a change of address. Apparently the customer service rep I spoke with a couple of days earlier was not qualified to change addresses!? Anyway suffice to say that they did indeed call me back. This is how the conversation went:

Rep: "Hello is that Miss Murray?"
Me: "Yes, hello"
Rep: "Hello Miss Murray it's xxxxxxx.Credit Card company phoning regarding your change of address"
Me: " Yes that's right, I have a new address"
Rep: "No problem Miss Murray. I just need to run through some security questions with you"

Normally at this point I remind them that it was they who had rung me and I would refuse to prove I was in fact the person they had rung.

I did this once with my mobile phone company and she suggested I call them back on a specific number in order to verify it was indeed them. She failed to realise that she had actually done the exact same thing. By phoning me on my mobile number (issued by them)  wasn't adequate proof that I wasn't an impostor. Yet they expected me to phone their number (not issued by me) and be satisfied that they were genuine. For all I know it could have been some cowboy outfit with access to thousands of phone number scamming us by pretending to be a well known mobile co. and accessing our personal information. I knew it wasn't but out of principal I didn't call them back.

On this occassion however I had to get my address changed and apparently this was the only way possible despite all the advances in technology and the numerous means of communicating at our disposal. I was also expecting this call and so had no reason to be suspicious.  I took a deep breath and proceeded to answer the following idiotic security questions:

Rep: "Can you confirm your full name please"?

Oh I soo wanted to snap back "You've been calling me by it for the last few minutes!". However I refrained and through gritted teeth gave him my full name.

Rep: "Can I have your full date of birth please". Again I answered, trying to remain ever so polite and not burst into some angry rant.

Rep: "Can I have the last four digits of your credit card please Miss Murray?"

I don't know how I was holding it together but I played along.

You would think by now that would be enough. They had phoned me, I'd confirmed my full name, d.o.b and last 4 digits of my card surely all suspicion that I was a fraudster would be removed. But there was more....

Rep: " Can I have the first and third letter of your password?"

Surely now this would suffice??What next? My vital statistics?!!

Rep continues "can you please tell me Miss Murray the last two recent purchases made with your credit card?".

I actually could not remember what these were as fortunately I do not use this card very often and I didn't think it was that crucial in the crusade against identity theft. I really wanted to argue this point with him but I'd got this far I didn't want to risk being cut off and having to go through the entire ridiculous process again. He  must have sensed by now that I was at the end of my tether...I was practically hissing the answers out...and so the perverse little creature decided to punish me further...

Rep admonishes me " Well in that case Miss Murray please provide me with your email address?" Good grief!!

Clearly this is how he gets his kicks and I know why Rep # 1 was  not qualified to deliver the change of address process. He obviously wasn't a member of the KGB's mental torture unit!!

Has the fight against identity fraud gone too far or was I just being a teeny wee bit premenstrual?

Monday, 18 July 2011

"Once a prostitute always a prostitute.."??

Train WreckedI thought I'd seen everything that reality TV could throw at me...programs offering a platform to showcase hidden talent along with disillusioned wannabees we the viewers all love to mock and ridicule or B list celebrities thrown together in a tropical jungle facing their fears not just by wrestling with snakes and spiders but spending any length of time in close proximity with former "I'm a Celebrity get me out of here" contestant, Janice Dickinson would make chewing on kangaroo testicles as easy as eating marshmallows! Along with a multitude of other "fly on the wall" shows what next in the realm of so called "reality" TV?

 "Once a prostitute always a prostitute" is not the title of a new reality show but the opinion of a male resident of Lusaka, Zambia in response to hearing about the new TV show which has been launched by Zambian TV to help "former" prostitutes find a husband. " it is very difficult for them to just change overnight" he concluded. What!!?? Faced with the prospect of a husband, roof over their heads and food in their mouths does this man really think a former prostitute would turn it down preferring to live a life thwart with danger, self loathing and shame?

"Ready for Marriage" is the new reality TV show which involves18 sex workers who stand to win a cash prize of $9000 and have their wedding paid for. They have been taken  from the streets in different parts of the country and the program makers claim that "we want to make a difference to these women's lives. These are people after all". Really? Nothing to do with pretty much guaranteeing huge audience figures then? The viewers participate by voting off contestants every week. Those contestants get a consolation prize of $1000 - $1500 and help in finding a full time job so that they do not return to prostitution....very commendable.

But why a TV show? Why make a parody of a very serious issue with sensationalism if it's not for monetary gain? Exploiting these women's misfortune. What happens to all the other prostitutes not chosen? Are they lining up hoping to be picked for series 2 or 3, until then do they remain prostitutes in order to one day qualify?
Forget the camera, lights, action and lose the cabaret...if the sentiment was genuine then the TV company should donate money to set up a support network for these women. They could then film the progress and success stories.

And what of the potential husband? Is it a wife he's really looking for...??

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

A friend in need...................... is minus a fish.

One of the many advantages of being a spinster is that I am more often than not available to my friends to help them out in their hour of need. At a drop of a hat I can jump in my car and be at my friend's door to deal with whatever crisis prevails, offering support whether emotionally or financially. I do not have to worry about a hubby or any children being fed and taken care of, as I only have myself to deal with, giving me time and emotional energy to sacrifice to those very important to me, a deed which is gladly undertaken, time and time again.

So it was without hesitation that I agreed to "house sit" for a very good friend of mine whilst her and her family went on vacation to sunny Spain for 2 weeks. This meant moving in to their 6 bedroom house enjoying some much needed solitude and relaxation. This is not without its demands however and after an hours crash course in the operation of household appliances, door locks and a briefing of local knowledge, I waved farewell to the "Winner" family, closed the door behind them and allowed peace to descend.

But not for long....... part of the package included a menagerie of family pets. 1 dog, 5 cats  and 6 fish....oops make that 5 fish as of this morning! I already knew about the existance of the dog and 5 cats and was purrrrfectly happy to play the part of dog lover and cat loving spinster,  however it was not until the eve of the "Winners" departure  that I learnt about the family of fish that lived on the top floor of the three storey house belonging to the youngest male member of the family. The "Winners" (in every sense of the word)  were on their way to Viva Espagna and I was on my way to Viva Dr. Dolittle!

I have only ever in my life taken care of 1 fish. Won from a funfair, a goldfish swimming around and around in its archetype goldfish bowl, enjoying a typical  2 week life span often associated with merry go round prizes, is a very pleasant but non eventful non tasking experience in a young childs life! So for me to have the responsibility of 6 fish inhabiting an aquarium ....what could possibly go wrong??

I know as much about fish as I do about quantum physics, ie: I like the idea of it but it seems too much like hard work for very little gain. Besides, it makes my head hurt!

The instructions were, however,  simple enough....feed twice a day (small pinch of flakey fish food) and turn aquarium light on and off accordingly.

The first week passed without event and my confidence grew as the Noah of the "Winner" residence.

Into the second week my lack of marine knowledge was highlighted as I ignored the telltale signs of aquarium in distress. As the days passed the tanks water turned a deeper and darker green until I could no longer  see the fish unless they swam  as near as possible up against the glass trying to amplify their silent plea  of "I'm a fish...... get me the f**k out of here"!!

I had no idea, I didn't realise, I was not suspicious of the ever increasingly invisible fish in the whirl of neon glowing, nuclear waste disposal coloured water.

Until this morning.......

 I eat fish for supper. I handle their grey scaled skin. I smother in butter and herbs without issue.  But when faced with a 3 inch long, silver, dead fish, early morning, eye balling me from the water's surface, I felt physically repulsed. I struggled to "fish" it  out of the tank...'scuse the pun! I used a dessert spoon and a leftover take away carton in which to remove him/her??? and for some strange reason held my breath the entire time!! WTF!! The demised fish is now in the "Winner" kitchen garbage bin!!

The lightbulb in my head has illuminated and the tank is now clean and shiny complete with crystal clear water. That said I am now officially on "Fish watch" for the remaining 5 days!!

Monday, 27 June 2011

Would you......Dial A Man?

I watched "The Wedding Date" the other evening. A RomCom where a single woman hires a male escort to accompany her to her sisters wedding weekend in order to make her ex jealous.  I can think of many reasons to hire a male escort but stirring the "green eyed monster" in former partners is not one of them.  However it got me thinking about these men who hire themselves out to women of varying ages, occupation and status. Their role is simple enough....remain attentive, engage in intelligent conversation, listen to their "date" and look smart and handsome whilst pretending to be an "old friend", "business associate" or whatever else is necessary to convince the onlookers that he is with her through choice and not for financial gain. Discretion is paramount unless of course you are happy to introduce "Julian" as the man you've hired for the evening because you can't find a decent looking man of your own!

There are, however, those women who are avid escort users.  They do not  have the time or energy to deal with conventional dating methods but enjoy no strings male company where she is completely in control.
There are numerous online sites and agencies. From those who just want an innocent dinner date and would never pay for any "optional extras", to those who slip him an extra few pounds and he'll be escorting you to the nearest hotel room for what is basically paid sex. Females are not the only customers of male escorts but men too who are typically between 40 and 60, very wealthy and exist in a world where money literally buys anything. For these last two types however, the title "male escort" is really just a smokescreen for a "male prostitute" and "rent boy".

Is it better than a "one night stand"? Well it's likely to be healthier and safer (most escorts carry condoms) and you're guarateed a good time.  Maybe I should try it myself ( strictly for research purposes only of course)!
Is it morally right? This depends on the person doing the hiring and being hired. If it rests easy in your mind and no one gets hurt then I guess why not?

It is in principle a business relationship where both parties involved know exactly what to expect and what is expected. Money doesn't even change hands as this is prepaid to the agency.

But there is an element of double standards here. Whether you like it or not, whether its wrong or right, lets face it...if a woman buys sex the man is a male escort,  but if a man buys sex the woman is deemed to be a prostitute. 

Sunday, 19 June 2011

36 month glitch.........!

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According to recent studies in the UK the 7 year itch has now become the 3 year glitch. This is the time that stress levels in relationships peak and the first flushes of romance have well and truly disappeared down the toilet! Those minor irritations that are harmless, almost funny and cute at the start of love develop into major annoyances which fuel arguments, cause the slamming of doors and force the back to back sleeping position. Yes we've all been there at some point in a relationship when your gorgeous adorable "sweet cheeks" becomes a vile monstrous specimin all because the toilet seat is left up, the top left off of the toothpaste or dirty socks abandoned on the bedroom floor. Little nuances which were once overlooked and readily dismissed when the rose tinted glasses were on and love really was blind.

The top 10 everyday niggles and passion killers in relationships are defined as follows;
  1. Weight gain/lack of exercise.
  2. Money & Spend thriftiness 
  3. Anti Social working hours
  4. Hygiene issues, personal cleanliness
  5. In Laws & extended family seeing too much/too little of.
  6. Lack of romance (sex, treats etc)
  7. Alcohol - drinking too much
  8. Snoring and anti social behaviour
  9. Lapsed fashion sense - losing touch with fashion & wearing the same old underwear/clothes
  10. Bathroom habits failing to lock doors, stray toenail cuttings, cleaning up etc  
 As I look down this list I see clearly that there is a correlation between these points. Each irritation is the cause and effect:

Weight gain is inevitable. Going out to dinner, sharing take aways, curled up together watching a movie eating ice cream, pop corn , chocolate etc will all contribute to that expanding waistline. Once realisation hits that you literally eating the contents of your bank account then common sense prevails and cut backs are introduced hence the need to watch the pennies and decrease the spending. Cue the arguments over how much was spent in the hair salon and the night out with the lads. In addition to keeping the wolf from the door, extra money needs to be earnt and what does that mean? Yep you guessed it....anti social working hours of course! And if your working all the hours in the day, who has the time and energy to devote hours and hours in the bathroom?? Enter # 4!

So how do numbers 1 - 4 lead to # 5? Well if my gorgeous sexy partner had turned into a lardy lazy arsed, stinky pits haggered looking scrooge, I would be too embarrassed for anyone to see him or would use spending time out with my friends and family as an excuse just to get then hell away from him! # 6 - lack of romance/sex.....well do I really need to explain?? 1 - 5 have already put paid to any bedroom antics or loving gestures.

At this point you are now in a relationship with no sex, no money and no time together so there's only one thing for it....alcohol!! You've been driven to it. Drowning your sorrows or getting blind drunk to block out the reality! Bring on # 8! Excessive drinking leads to anti social behaviour and a drunken slumber leads to loud body shaking snoring.
# 9 & 10 I'm sure you can figure out yourself but I think I've made my point. 

The slow demise of a relationship stems from the beginning.  This knock on effect sequence snowballs and gets out of control.....however only if you let it. If I've learnt anything from past relationships it is  focus more on what he/she does well and don't sweat the small stuff!

Sunday, 12 June 2011

My Second Award!

A second award was bestowed on me some days ago....I am a little remiss to ackowledge it but would like to thank Kelly from Psychocarnival: for this honour.Greatly appreciated!! Now you never know what you are going to get from this guy, I guess that's why the word "Psycho" feature in his blog title. Most of his posts are not for the faint hearted or anyone who offends easily, yet other posts are full of sensitivity  giving him an edgy appeal. If you want a good laugh then visit his blog NOW!
Having received this award I am to also mention another 5 bloggers who I feel are noteworthy of this accolade which is about supporting other fellow bloggers.  So here goes.............


Wednesday, 25 May 2011

If you've got an itch....scratch it!???

Whilst having a quiet drink out the other evening I involuntarily overheard a giggling female proclaim rather loudly to her girlfriend that she had purchased  an Ann Summers "Whisper" vibrator! I thought to myself that she should perhaps whisper about it, rather than loudly advertise her intimate DIY sessions across the crowded bar! That aside like most single women of any age, her sexual needs are there to be fulfilled and a vibrator is one sure way of getting there.

The altenative? Acquire a fwb (friend with benefits) or have casual (safe)sex with whoever, whenever it takes her fancy. Dating sites are numerous, catering  for all needs, whether you just need to scratch that itch -  "Shagbook" is the adult version of  Facebook, claiming to be a safe secure no strings attached adult dating site. I fail to see the relavance of using the word "dating" in the profile of the Facebook of sex! This is clearly a way to just hook up for one on one, no dating required. What next, the sexual gratification alternative of "My Space" ....... "My Place...or yours"?? Whilst other sites such as eharmony and, suggest that the possibility of meeting your "soulmate" is within reach should you join their community for a monthly fee. These are all harmless enough as long as expectations are kept to a minimum and an open mind is ever present.

More worryingly, however, are recently emerging sites aimed at "married" people! Yes, you read correctly. They claim to be an alternative source of passion for those Mr & Mrs's in unfulfilling relatonships. Husbands and wives whose marriages are at some stage more churlish than cherish can surf the net for an affair. What is even more unnerving is clearly there is a market for this "service" as more and more of these sites are springing up. "Illicit Encounters" - a discreet and confidential extra marial affair service; "AffairsClub" - for the married and lonely, to name just a few, yet all have one common clear message -  Find Passion, Have an Affair!

What has our society become when we allow the sanctity of marriage to be so openly vilified by viewing affairs in a positive light? Tempting and encouraging people to partake. Surely by making having an affair so easily accessable indicates that it is perfectly acceptable, I mean everyone else is doing it so why not??

10 years ago surfing the net for love was frowned upon and deemed as a little desparate but look at it now. It is as socially acceptable as sending a birthday card online. I fear the same will happen with online affairs to the point where the illicitness and danger of it will become the norm. Not to mention the implicatons should one adulterer fall in "love" with their "partner in crime". Surely, these sites are just setting up already unhappy people for even more sorrow??

And I wonder too if the people who operate or work in them are married??

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Blinded by the "Voice"?

I recently came across a live recording of the Gipsy Kings singing "My Way" in Spanish. ...A Mi Manera.   I was enthralled not only by the incadescent sensual tones of the Spanish word, but found  myself mesmerised by the barely 5'5 tall singer who looked like he had a penchant for many tapas and had never seen a comb  to tame his black corse pubic style hair. Sounds attractive? Not in the least! However, I was mesmerised.
I found myself lost in his eyes but equally lost in his haunting beautiful voice. Surely he was singing to me?? I am normally  attractive to generically good looking men yet I found myself lusting over Spains answer to Danny De Vito!

What is it about a man who can sing and sing well that turns level headed, good honest women into fanatical screaming banshees? Take Tom Jones for example. Yes he was attractrive in his day but put him serving burgers in Mcdonalds and would you have whipped  your knickers off, flung them skyward,  for them to fall in the deep fat fryer? I think not. Tom Jones, staturesque and testerone pumped, belting out "My Delilha" whilst thrusting his pelvis would send even Mother Teresa into a spin. Demis Roussos and Barry White...not my idea of eye candy but  their dulcet tones had women throwing themselves at them. Even later in life, Elvis' bloated body and drugged dazed state could still pull the babes with his stunning voice and hip action.

Lyle Lovett is a clear example as to how a non conventional looking man can attract a "pretty woman". But if you don't look and just listen, his country boy voice is really sexy. Maybe Julia Robets liked blindfolds??

Rockers, heavy metallers, head banging long haired unshaven leather clad whisky swilling dirty smelly men. Give them a guitar, a husky voice and half open eye lid look and women just melt at their feet.

Equally a man in a uniform turns what is normally average Joe into Prince Charming. And here's one that the very clever and astute people in Marketing deploy...... a man holding a new born baby...heart warming and.priceless!  Only those unromantic cynics amongst us would not be fooled by the perfect image of devotion.

So any guys out there who are having a hard time in attracting the girl of your dreams....get yourself some singing lessons and serenade her. I promise it's not cheesy....honest!! Failing that, borrow a Military uniform or steal a baby!

Sunday, 17 April 2011

I have inspired.............!

Imagine my surprise yet delight at receiving my first blog award.........

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Flying Solo................

The lighter evenings and warmer temperatures indicate the onset of  Summertime. As we waved farewell to Christmas and New Year cheer for another year, holiday companies were already lining up ready to bombard us with their advertising campaigns, whisking us away to exoctic destinations which promise us sun, sea and laughter.

Marvelous!! I absolutely love nothing better than planning a week or two away from the humdrum of everyday life and unpredictable, often lousy, British weather and I will happily pay for the privalage. However, what I do object to is being forced to pay extra to sleep in a hotel room on my own! Why? Single bloody supplement that's why!! Let's discriminate against those of us who have to holiday on our own because we are without partner,spouse, boyfriend, child, by imposing this penalty! Why not call it Sad Single Supplement for even greater impact!!

Even if I were to travel with a friend and her partner,(highly unlikely as I don't play the "spare part" very well) I'm hardly going to share a room with the "happy couple"! So I have to have a room on my own and pay the premium for using less water than two people, less electricity, wear and tear on the towels, furniture and bed (well unless I get lucky of course)!!Ha Ha!

I know why they charge compensate for the losses incurred because only one person is using the room.Okay so I may have more surplus cash to spend than Mum and Dad who with several children in tow, need every last penny to keep the little darlings entertained.  But if there are family rooms available with 3 even 4 beds where costs are saved by Mum and Dad and the hotelier gets more for the room, why can't that be weighed against a single occupancy room?
We pay less council tax for occupying a house on our own. So why not in a hotel room?

Without a single supplement, the extra £15 - £20 per night saving could be spent in the hotel bar, or on the a la carte menu instead of the set menu. There would even be money spare to enjoy the hotel spa. So in essence, the money would still be injected back into the hotel only this way we would get somethng enjoyable for what we paid for. Everyone is happy all round. Result!

So what next?  A single supplement for dining out alone in a restaurant because the seat opposite is empty and therefore redundant without a paying customer sat on it?

If lady drivers are now having to pay the same insurance car premiums as men because otherwise  it is deemed as sex discrininiaton to pay lower., then perhaps those of us flying on holiday solo should pay the same for our room as couples, or otherwise could this also be seen as discrimination?

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Bachelors have more fun....?

Bachelor Spinster Bachelor Spinster Bachelor Spinster.......why is it that these two words which pretty much mean the same thing, when spoken, conjure up completely different images?  However.....Spinster Old Maid Spinster Old Maid ....our thought process here doesn't really recognise a difference between the two words. Similarly.... Bachelor and Stud sit in the same category. Whereas...Stud and Old Maid are at completely opposite ends of the scale. Why is it that the bachelor gets to have the Stud label associated with him and the Spinster has inherited the title of Old Maid? Who's having more fun.....well the Stud of course.

Revered by married men for remaining single and ultimately keeping their "freedom", bachelors do not have to justify or make excuses for being unmarried and childless. They don't get to the age of 40 and announce to the world that they are eager to settle down and live happily ever after in domestic bliss. They have chosen and celebrate their single status and will only choose to change it when they are good and ready and not by the age determined on their birth certificate.  Until then they remain a highly sought after commodity.

Our beloved Spinsters however, face a different association. Imagine an Old Maid and the picture in your head is not that of a sexy, sassy, confident, independant sex in the city Samantha. Bachelors get George Clooney on their side and we get Miss Havisham! Sad, pitiful, bitter and left behind are all adjectives used to describe a her.  Cats and knitting feature strongly in her life.

Think of Bachelor Pad and think of who lives in such a place? Someone who is charismatic, a catch,  a ladies man. The fact that a place to live is named after them screams to the rest of us that this lifestyle is desirable for a man. The "most eligible bachelor" is another accolade for these single men to aspire to. There is no such equivalent for the Spinster. You won't see a "Spinster Pad" advertised in your local estate agent nor will the "most eligible Spinsters" feature on the front  cover of such publications as FHM, GQ or any other of the men's popular magazines, in order to increase sales.  However you may find them on the front cover of "Simply Knitting" or "Your Cat" magazines!!

And why is it that a 40 something woman wanting to find the one, get married and have children is seen as desperate? Her desire is understandibly driven by the ticking of her biological clock....what is wrong with that?

So what is the alternative. Shall we call ourselves "Cougars" (now that is desperate). Bachelorettes? (sounds too young and flighty).

It really is time to dispense with the stigma and outdated stereotype associated with Spinsters....I mean who knits these days anyway? It should be replaced with the definition that an older unmarried woman is just plain picky!!

Thursday, 24 March 2011

From the Spinster's mouth....

A true hollywood icon and most definitely NOT one of life's Spinsters, eight times married Dame Elizabeth Taylor sadly passed away this week. She cetainly had her fair share of weddings, honeymoons, in-laws and husbands. Equally though her fair share of heartache and pain as yet another marriage failed. But to her credit that didn't stop her from not giving up on love and happy ever after. Unlike another hollywood star, Greta Garbo, who failed to turn up to her wedding to John Gilbert in 1927....“You don't have to be married to have a good friend as your partner for life.”....  "There are some who want to get married and others who don't. I have never had an impulse to go to the altar. I am a difficult person to lead". Greta Garbo

 She never married, had no children and lived alone. 

Following on from this I thought it would be intrigiung to know the reasons, beliefs and thoughts from other well known Spinsters about their unmarried, childless status. Is it intentional or accidental, is it a burden or a benifit? Read  their thoughts below and see for your self:

"I don't think that because I'm not married it's made my life any less. That old maid myth is garbage."  
Diane Keaton

"It’s probably not just by chance that I’m alone. It would be very hard for a man to live with me, unless he’s terribly strong. And if he’s stronger than I, I’m the one who can’t live with him. … I’m neither smart nor stupid, but I don’t think I’m a run-of-the-mill person. I’ve been in business without being a businesswoman, I’ve loved without being a woman made only for love. The two men I’ve loved, I think, will remember me, on earth or in heaven, because men always remember a woman who caused them concern and uneasiness. I’ve done my best, in regard to people and to life, without precepts, but with a taste for justice."  
 Coco Chanel

"I'm just not the marrying kind"
Oprah Winfrey

“I go on looking. Some day my prince will come".
Susan Boyle

 "I think the big misconception in our society is that we're supposed to meet the one when we're 18 and we're supposed to get married to them and love them for the rest of our lives. Bulls**t."
...., "Who would want to be with the same person for 80 years? Why not break it up a little bit?"
...... "I think people get freaked out about getting married and spending 20 or 30 years sleeping with the same person, but if that's the case, don't do it."
"Have someone for five years and another person for another five years... Life is long and lucky and yes, love might last forever, but you don't always live with the person you love forever."
Cameron Diaz

“I very much believe in marriage. I hope to only be married once, which is why I’ve never been married. But I am a strong believer. My parents have been together for 40 years and are still very much in love so I think I have very high standards.”.....“If you’re a woman and you want to have children, you feel a little bit of pressure there.”
Winona Ryder

"Maybe it's a path I'll never go down. All I know is you can do worse than expect the unexpected," 
Kylie Minogue

"I am afraid of the word marriage. I'm afraid of making the commitment and failing because I never want to be divorced. I don't want divorce to enter my whole reality."
Naomi Campbell

“Anything is to be preferred or endured rather than marrying without affection,”
Jane Austen

"I have a moral, an active nature which requires satisfaction and that I would not find in his life. I could be satisfied to spend a life with him in combining our different powers to some great object. I could not satisfy this nature by spending a life with him in making society and arranging domestic things".
Florence Nightingale in her diary Florence Nightingale explained why she decided to turn down the offer of marriage to Richard Moncton Milnes. 

"If I follow the inclination of my nature, it is this: beggar-woman and single, far rather than queen and married."
Queen Elizabeth I

And finally Dame Elizabeth Taylor on her numerous marriages..

“My mother says I didn't open my eyes for eight days after I was born, but when I did, the first thing I saw was an engagement ring. I was hooked.”

Saturday, 5 March 2011

What is the way to a man's heart....?

They say that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach but I'm beginning to think it's through being a complete and utter bitch! It never fails to amaze me how so many men are attracted to women wth the moral standards of Cruella Da Vil and the destructive narcissism of Alexis Carrington! Why is being treated like dirt  such a turn on for our male counterparts? Is it the dominatrix undertones that leads them in to thinking they are guaranteed great sex? Do the harsh words, constant put downs and temper tantrums that they are subjected to, uncover a deep rooted neediness first planted there by those men's overbearing suffocating mothers?

I recently enjoyed a lovely evening at a friend's dinner party. Two of the couples I had never met before and both seemed very pleasant and pretty normal at first. However, as the evening wore on it became increasingly noticeble that one of the couples had a Jessica and Roger Rabbit set up. He appeared to be a really nice genuine young man who behaved completely  lovingly towards the object of his affections. However, to my horror the obviously smitten guy was frequently referred to by his so called "sweetheart" as a tosser and a twat!  She swore at him constantly and even made threatening gestures with her arms that she was very capable of punchng the living daylights out of him!

This is just one example of many I have heard and witnessed over time. Like the very wealthy older man who lavishes gifts and holidays on a very undeserving woman who in return keeps him hidden from family and friends and will not be seen in public with him because of his age.  In addition she has made no secret that he is a "stepping stone" until someone better comes along. Why does he accept this treatment? Is he just grateful that he's got someone!??Or the young father who stays at home looking after his child while young  mum is out partying and enjoying the wanted attention from other men. He idolises her and showers her with a seemingly neverending supply of love and devotion and forgives her every indescretion. Their relationship is on and off more frequently than a flashing light...currently it's off!

Okay so these guys obviously allow themselves to be walked all over and a relationship of mutual kindness, loyalty and respect serves no purpose in their masochistic love lives. Treat them mean, keep then keen catches your man, reels him in and keeps him hanging on your line. Is this where I've been going wrong all these years? Do I then, therefore, have to stamp my feet, scream & shout and verbally abuse my way through a relationship in order to keep my man? Well it all sounds very exhausting to me and not much fun...I'd rather stay single!                           

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Destiny's Spinster?

 For those of you who have read my earlier posts; Old Maid, Accidental Spinster, What men think of Spinsters; you will accurately sense from them that I struggle with my Spinster status and continually battle to accept my fate. I question where I went wrong, what, if anything, I could have done to avoid the path of  Spinsterhood.

Well it transpires that maybe there is nothing I could have done which would have made the slightest difference to where I stand today. Even a "Sliding Doors" phenomenon which would have taken me on a parallel journey with different experiences, ultimately would have led to where I am at present, I would have just got here a another way. And how do I know this?.............Enter the"Nadis".

Briefly, Nadis are charts drawn up on pieces of bark hundreds of years ago. Inscribed on these woody sheets are the past, present and future of peoples lives today but written down in the past.. Hard to believe I know so here's the proof.

The famous Indian philosopher, Dr Deepak Chopra, experienced a Nadi reading by a young priest who did not speak English or Hindu, had spent his entire life in a temple in Southern India and therefore did not know who Deepak was. The reading taken from the thousand year old Nadis detailed Deepak's life with startling accuracy: birth date, his parent's name, his own name and wife's, how many children he had and where they lived, the day and hour of his father's death, his exact name and his mother's. Interestingly, it seemed at first that the priest had given the incorrect mother's name but after some family investigaton by Deepak, it transpires that it was indeed her birth name which had been changed when she was 3 years old.

Remember these words had all been written down a thousand years before and the Nadis are scattered all over India so it is only by pure chance to run across one that applies to you. And how are you matched up to a Nadi? Not by the time and date of your birth but by your thumb print. A person will walk into a reader's house and the reader takes a thumb print. Based on that the charts are located.

Further more the Nadi gave  Deepak the day of his own death, knowledge, which he chose to have.

Perhaps then fate is not in my hands and Spinsterhood is my destiny and nothing I ever did or could do will change that at this moment in time.To know if it will ever change I would have to have a reading.

Somewhere in India there maybe a Nadi detailing my life which  has already been set in stone (well in bark) hundreds of years ago.This i will only know if I ever choose to go in search for it and request a reading. I really don't like the idea of knowing the day I will die however, I think that part I would skip. Wouldn't you?

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Lonely Hearts?

Tomorrow marks a poignant date in the calendar of the majority of loved up couples. . Yes it's that time of year again  when Valentines day is  thrust upon men and women all over the world urging them to prove the measure of their love with expensive gifts and swanky weekends away. And could it be that the higher the value of the gift the increased depth of love is felt?? Does a £20 red bra & knicker set compare to a £300 night in a luxury hotel, romantic meal and champagne? Of course it doesn't...and don't fool yourself to think otherwise. And  if your better half is a 6 figure a year high flyer and presents a heart shaped box of chocolates as his token of affection then you may need to seriously reassess your relationship and self worth! Oooh how fickel I can hear you berate and yes  that is what Valentines Day is: One dimensional, cheap and  tacky. You would be justified too in thinking that perhaps I'm a little bit cynical and bitter because let's face it what will I be doing tomorrow evening?? I won't be wined and dined by a significant other. Flowers, perfume, chocolates and sexy underwear will not feature in my Monday 14th February 2011. But if they did I certainly wouldn't turn them down. I too have been and still can be wrapped up in the "romance" and fun that is spent on a day solely dedicated to love.

For those of you who preach that it is unnecessary to use a particular day to show how much you love someone ...well then you may as well state the same for Christmas. Is it therefore, unnecessary to recognise 25th December and extend goodwill to all men? Use it to heal family rifts, to forgive and be forgiven, to give and take and share? 

Valentines Day  draws out emotions not just exclusive to couples but which can and should also be extended to friends and family. For those of us who are not half of a whole but a whole all by ourselves, we are not lonely in our hearts,  something which Valentines expectations can so crassly  highlight. We can show our love and affection for those in our lives that are dear and important to us. 

So for those people I love (you know who you are) and whose love I have ......Happy Valentines Day xx
 "I don't understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine's Day.  When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon".  ~Author Unknown

Thursday, 10 February 2011

The Sinister Spinster dress - I'll have one in every colour please......NOT!!!

The Sinister Spinster Dress : Men love this dress. Seriously.
Simple, comfy, yet very elegant, this black Stretch velvet dress has an empire waist, pleated skirt, and pointed collar and cuffs. You choose the color of the collar and cuffs.
Collar Colors: "Black Rose" Velvet Flocked poplin ( Shown Here) or Satin Brocade in: Red, Black, Burgundy, Forest Green, Royal Blue, Purple, Pink.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Role Model for Spinsters?

Tonight I am all fired up, incensed infact over an article I have read.  And what has driven me to such emotion? Jennifer Aniston.  She is many things.......stunning, funny, wealthy, intelligent...but she is not a Spinster so how can the words role model, Spinster and Jennifer Aniston feature in the same sentence? Correct me if I'm wrong but wasn't their a fairytale romantic wedding back in July 2000 which resulted in a marriage between her and Mr Brad Pitt.  Their highly publicised divorce in 2005 concludes that Jennifer Anniston is in fact a divorcee albeit a childless divorcee, but a divorcee nonetheless therefore she does not qualify as a Spinster and definately not a role model.

Maybe you  think I'm being a little sensitive and protective over the Spinster definition and to be fair a divorcee is single and a Spinster is single which does unite them. However, Jennifer Aniston has played the blushing bride, worn the white dress and thrown the prized bouquet. Sacred vows have been spoken upon her lips as two people became one. She has moved cheek to cheek,  heart to heart, entwined, dancing the first dance. No Ms Anniston you are not  a member of the Spinsterhood because you have lived  your fairytale, you have been a wife, you have had your husband and your in-laws. Now unless you spin wool in your spare time, the ring that was on your finger once upon a time rules you out.

However, you  Miss Minogue have had none of that so Kylie welcome aboard!

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Not married, not bothered!

I've stolen the title of this post from a book that I am eager to read. I cannot wait to immerse myself in this A-Z of Spinsterhood by Carol Clewlow titled of course "Not Married, Not Bothered"..  From the reviews I have read and interviews she has given, Carol Clewlow views on single, childless women is not only refreshing but for me admirable and brave! It is not  a self pitying, apologetic portrayal of failing to conform, succeed in marriage and motherhood but  about a defiant heroin who is not a Spinster by accident but by  choice. HOORAY!! I want to be Riley Gordon and fly the flag for Spinsterhood! She is everything I'm not. She is comfortable with her Spinster status.. No that's not enough, she is HAPPY! I know I will get this and so much more from this much anticipated read.

Why hadn't I stumbled across it before during my dark days of feelings of hopelessness and despair? This will be my "Bible". I will reach for it when I'm attending the next wedding alone, the next birthday celebration wthout an escort. I will devour every last contradiction and point scoring with two fingers up at society's obsession with the "ticking clock"! I feel empowered already!

Oh dear, have I been hasty, a tad overzealous in putting my seal of approval on a book I have not even read? I broke off for a minute to read some more reviews and came across very negative feedback.

Dear book as you look down on me from the pedastal that I put you on......have I sung your praises too soon? Am I blinded by my own need for self absolution? Will you disappoint?

Well the proof is in the pudding...I better go and buy the damn thing now! ....................My review  of this book will be forthcoming in the near future....

Friday, 28 January 2011

Ready for the Weekend?

 The Weekend is upon us and what does it have in  store for a Spinster lady like myself?   Well first of all, it will be devoid of alcohol as have the last two and half weeks! I decided  that I had over indulged not just over Christmas and New Year but for the past 12 months (ok maybe 12 years) and it was time to give my poor liver and kidneys some well earned R&R. In addition it's time to have a word with yourself when you win an award on a ski trip, not for skiing but for being the "Party Animal" of the week!! Something has to be done! During the days of sobriety I imagine my detoxifying system cocooned now, safe and sound in a swirl of sparkling water, smiling contently, softly slumbering. For now!

I am busy over the next two days. My first engagement will take me on a 10 mile hike into the hills accompanied by fellow Spatchelors (Spinsters & Batchelors), Singledons, Divorcees and an occasional Spoken for Person. This is an adventure group I belong to which is great for getting out and about, not necessarily to meet people, but having things to do that doesn't mean relying on anyone else. You just book and turn up and get to spend a day out with like minded people.  No indecisons, no one lettng you down at the last minute. Perfect!

The weekend continues with a couple of birthdays. First my father's 75th! I sometimes wonder what he thinks of my single status. He comes from an different era, I'm sure he took it for granted that his youngest would get married and have children. At this point I could digress and delve into my family's  history of matrimony but that in itself is an entire posting and I will save it for another day.

Then on to a birthday bash which will take up a whole day and night! I will know 3 people out of 100 but that's the beauty of parties, meeting strangers will inevitably extend your social circle and opens up endless opportunities!

So a full weekend! How can I worry about my single status when my diary is full and I have the freedom to just take off to wherever and whenever? How can I complain about being lonely when by Sunday night I will have met another 97 people? I am in a good place.: )Which brings me nicely to the quote below from a very famous Spinster.........have a good weekend everyone!

"If I follow the inclination of my nature, it is this: beggar-woman and single, far rather than queen and married."
Elizabeth I
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