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Catch Up


...Oh...my post title just reminded me of how in America, for a time, there were two spellings of ketchup - the aforementioned, and I believe, now largely out of use but still lurking around when I was younger, CATSUP. I was always a little fascinated with this spelling (ok I've only gone and Googled it, here is a little rambling article about it for anyone interested!).

Also, as many people know they call ketchup tomato sauce in the U.K., it's one of those little things I have struggled to embrace/let go of my American-ness with. And when I first moved here (it's gotten slightly better since but not always), if you asked for ketchup in a restaurant you were often met with a brief blank stare, a profoundly irritated pause, and a large sigh: "Do you mean TOMAHTO SAUCE?"

I am not even exaggerating, this tiny little thing, which they obviously know exactly what you are talking about, really gets the old British islander colloquial pride RILED. Never let it be said that Brits are not passive aggressive a.f. when they want to be!

And you have to ask for it often, because it is rarely presumed anyone wants ketchup with their fries here (*CHIPS*). EVEN THOUGH THEY HAVE MCDONALDS AND BURGER KING AND NOW FIVE GUYS HERE LIKE WHAAAAAAT is the problem. People eat CATSUP WITH THEIR AMERICAN(!) FRENCH FRIES HOW HARD IS IT?!! Ahem...sorry to shout. But like, I don't think people have any idea of the million little things that expats have to (try to) adapt to, and mostly I take them for granted and do my very best to blend in and have an easy life but sometimes you have to take a stand ;-).

Anyway...where was I. I have no idea really! I guess I just wanted to do a little catch up (catsup catsup catsup why is it so fun to type?! Sorry!) type post. Which clearly I am struggling to even focus on that small task!

I have, as is probably obvious, become less enchanted with blogging lately. I feel like a lot of the blogs I used to read and enjoy have gone quiet, and I know my own blogging productivity has screeched to a very near halt since um...early this year? I realized yesterday that I have written under 20 posts for the entire year, and we are in October now, and that makes me feel like a very slack blogger indeed. Part of this is down to life/laziness/lack of inspiration on my part.

But I don't know...I am struggling if I am honest, to feel like I am part of any real blogging community anymore. I never did find my "niche", and niche-less, non lifestyle bloggers who often just like to write about the little things in life seem to have faded away in many cases, and that makes me sad. I have nothing against lifestyle blogs per se, but I don't honestly relate to many of them. I'm too old to care enough to try to keep up with the Joneses in terms of fashion, home decor, travel trends, what EVER.

...(deletes long winded rant about the alienating state of the blogosphere for anyone not in a certain age bracket/niche/yada yada yada!).

So yes, update one: I suck at blogging lately. Also if we're being honest readership and comments seem to be down with many blogs, not just the little guys, and it can be demotivating to feel like you don't have "an audience". This whole writing into the ether lark can feel a bit lonely at times.

What else. It's about to be a busy time. We are heading to Florida at the end of the month for our annual trip to visit my Mom/lay around on the beach looking for dolphins (fingers crossed for us please that the red tide clears off once and for all, it is still sadly lingering a bit and has been the worst year for it, it's all very sad and upsetting and infuriating that the state government allowed it to get this bad thanks largely to pollution from sugar factories emptying into the rivers, which empty into the Gulf).

Also the week before that we are down in Glasgow for a gig (I'm not saying gig to sound hip, it's just...music shows with less than 500 people aren't really "concerts" are they?), so that should be fun. So yes, we are up and down to Glasgow twice in a week on the train as we are flying out of Glasgow the following week, kind of a lot of to'ing and fro'ing for us homebodies.

OH. Here's my weird confession since I haven't done Sunday Confessions in a long time: in all of this excitement and actual fun stuff happening, I am weirdly (I think it's weird anyway maybe other people get this way too?) quite excited to stay at a rather unglamorous airport hotel the night before we fly. I have no idea why. It will probably involve underwhelming food and not much in the way of entertainment (we have stayed there before a few years ago).

There's this really strange zombie apocalypse feel to staying at an airport hotel (this one is right on the airport's doorstep). You can't get through to anything vaguely interesting at the airport until you fly (at least not at this one), there is really nothing glamorous about it at all. EXCEPT for the fact that you are almost there, with the stress of getting to the airport completely gone, you can, in theory, get some sleep, wake up, and just effortlessly roll onwards into your holiday (again I know this is unrealistic and all sorts of things can still go wrong, but humour me!), and for some bizarre reason I can't put my finger on the thought of this just makes me weirdly hyped.

I think it's maybe simply that in doing this we are removing one extra layer of stress from the transatlantic journey, I have a fair amount of anxiety around flying now, thanks in part to the experience I wrote about here.

Anyway so yes we will hopefully get a nice sunshine break and then I will come home and Christmas will be around the corner and HOLY EFF where on earth has this year gone?!

Oh well, I am here, clearing the cobwebs, maybe it will help me focus on/think up some new things to blog about ("Proper" blogging things, not just me rambling, sorry!).

While I'm/you're here I will share a few things that I have enjoyed recently:

- Lindsey Kelk's new/latest book One In A Million: Ok I'm only halfway through, but it's a really fun peek behind the scenes of social media marketing story, which admittedly a few things have slanted a bit "young"/outside my wheelhouse, even as a blogger so this might be a problem for some people not into social media. I have been enjoying the reverse My Fair Lady type story, and the idea of trying to turn a hopelessly un-hip guy into a social media darling is a lot of  fun.

- Wynonna Earp - Ok this slightly oddball supernatural show is so much fun I think! (it's on Netflix in the U.K.). So full of female heroine badassery, Wynonna Earp is a sassy, take no prisoners character who has been tasked with sending the demons her great great (great?) grandpa Wyatt Earp killed back to hell (their dustbowl town is a sort of Purgatory/crack in space for demons I guess), with Wyatt's original gun being the only thing that has the supernatural oomph to do so. It is just a really nicely brain clearing salve for these oft frustrating times.

It won't change your life or anything, the special effects are quite cheesy, but if you are a fan of Supernatural, Lucifer, etc. you might like it. Although it does make me extra annoyed that Wayward Sisters (the female cast led Supernatural spinoff) didn't get picked up, the world needs more women as heroine led shows.

-  It's October, and I'll come out and admit it, I've come over a bit witchy all around. I'm getting into crystals and meditating and all sorts of fun distractions lately. Do I 100% believe in everything? I don't know, but it's a nice wee distraction from the world, and it helps calm and center me to burn a little incense and meditate and tune it all out sometimes.

I think I have mentioned before that I prefer guided meditations (there are lots of great free options on Amazon music if you have Prime), but my latest obsession is the Youtube channel Lune Innate. I have gotten into the habit of watching them if I am feeling wound up at night and they really help me relax (a lot of people seem to use her videos specifically for this purpose).

I think she has such a great soothing and authentically mystical energy to her videos. Watching them makes me feel sleepy and relaxed anyway, I don't honestly know if I believe in distance Reiki but it can't do any harm can it? She also has some lovely astrology, tarot and crystal information type videos if you're into it. I feel a bit kooky sharing this kind of thing, but you know, if you are someone who struggles with insomnia or likes mystical stuff you might enjoy it!

How about you, how are you getting on this glorious autumn season? Is anyone doing Blogtober? What's happening with you, talk to me, someone, anyone! ;-)



My attempt at a crystal grid :-)