The Adventure Continues...

Rants, raves and random observations from an itinerant epidemiologist.

100 in 1000
  1. Spend a week up a mountain learning to ski
  2. Visit Karoline's place in Moravia
  3. Hold a conversation in Czech (only)
  4. Drink 500ml of each of the following beers:
    1. Pilsner
    2. Staroprammen
    3. Budvar
    4. Velke Popovice
    5. U Fleku
    6. Gambrinus
    7. Krusovice
  5. Respond to at least one GOARN request (WHO and MSF are also acceptable)
  6. Travel across the Atlantic
  7. Return to South America
  8. Read a book to, or with, an impressionably aged child
  9. Participate in one NanoWriMo Challenge and come within at least 10,000 words of the goal length
  10. Have my nose pierced
  11. Have my next tattoo drawn
  12. Purchase the perfect jeans (x 2 pairs)
  13. Attend a spin class 3 times a week for 8 consecutive weeks
  14. Bake Viv's cheesecake
  15. Make David's casserole
  16. Make David's Chicken Cashew-nut Stirfry
  17. Invite 4 people who don't know one another too well to dinner
  18. Ride from Vienna to Venice on a motorbike (pillion acceptable, those less desirable)
  19. Attend a book group for at least two books
  20. Go on a choir weekend (learn and perform difficult piece in two/three days)
  21. Visit Madame Tussaud's (in London)
  22. Take an architecture appreciation course
  23. Join an all-girl group and sing a solo
  24. Publish in a scientific journal (top two authors)
  25. Cook a duck or other 'waterfowl'.
  26. Locate the Al-Timimi's from Doha Veterinary Practise
  27. Have a pedicure
  28. Maintain a Brazilian (ouch) for three months.
  29. Find a trustworthy Czech hairdresser
  30. Treat my inner-6-year-old twice a week (at least)
  31. Do the liver-cleansing diet properly (12 weeks)
  32. Don't eat out for one month
  33. Find a flat and flatmate
  34. Purchase one Joseph sweater
  35. Purchase one of the following pairs of designer shoes (they MUST also be COMFORTABLE, and be able to be worn with 4 different outfits and 2 types of occasion): Jimmy Choos, Manolo Blahniks, Christian Louboutin (Ebay or 2nd hand are acceptable)
  36. Send 5 books to the booksphere and track them.
  37. Go hanggliding
  38. Read 10 'classic' books (from 1001 Books to Read before you Die)
    1. Moll Flanders
    2. Everything is illuminated
    3. Madam Bovary
    4. Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintainance
    5. Catch-22
    6. Odysseus
    7. On the Road
  1. Run (non-stop!) for 5kms outside (preferably in a street race thingy)
  2. Send Christmas Cards on time
  3. Make a collage/mural out of street lights on my wall
  4. Buy a bed, build it, and sleep soundly in it
  5. Go to Africa
  6. Host an 'event' (classified as and when)
  7. Organise a 30th Birthday Party
  8. Wear a costume
  9. Sing on stage
  10. Buy a painting that evokes memories of Prague (cannot involve queues!)
  11. Learn a god-damned card game that stays in my memory (other than fish/snap)
  12. See sunrise. Be sober. Have woken for it. Excludes months Nov-Mar
  13. Take a walk and flip coins at each intersection
  14. Win something
  15. Draft a will
  16. Take a roadtrip
  17. Go to Italy already
  18. Sea Kayak around Abel Tasman Park (NZ)
  19. Get plants
  20. Take a train to another Eastern European Destination (accession countries are acceptable) alone preferably.
  21. Get UK to give me a provisional motorcyclists license and simultaneously get a 'card' license.
  22. Go SCUBA diving again - at least two dives lasting 30mins each.
  23. Go to a dentist. *sigh*
  24. Do a Czech Wine Trail. And live to tell the tale
  25. Make an 'outbreak emergency kit'.
  26. Go to bed prior to 11pm every night (inc weekends) for four consecutive weeks.
  27. Marvel over lack of tiredness
  28. Dine at a Gordon Ramsey restaurant (or Nobu)- preferably for free.
  29. Bet on the nags
  30. Do something for charity (applying and getting a 'red card' will count)
  31. Walk along the Champs Elysee
  32. Do 100 sit ups in a row
  33. Do 50 pressups (arms in tight)
  34. Make branston pickle (or nearest substitute)
  35. Cook something 'new' and 'adventurous' at least once a month
  36. Find a mentor
  37. Be a mentor
  38. Learn what mentoring is all about
  39. Meet an online person in real life
  40. Resist the flirt. Once. Just one night. It's okay if people don't immediately succumb to my natural charm. Really it is.
  41. Spend time at a spa (spa towns in the CR don't count)
  42. Send a care package to someone
  43. Get a Tata Bojs CD
  45. Order new contact lenses.
  46. Make a list of things I take with me when I pack for different occasions
  47. Eat lobster. Prepared by someone else.
  48. Back up the blog
  49. Put everything onto an external hard drive
  50. Find a DDR mat and console and 'dance, I say dance!'�
  51. Go to the beach and lie on the warm sand. For an hour. (with sunscreen on, natch)
  52. Take and complete a course in either: Tango, Salsa or Flamenco
  53. Join the Municipal Library of Prague
  54. Move to another country
  55. Go to a live concert of a band I actually like
  56. Pay off debts (student loan excl.)
  57. Send thank you cards for every gift I receive (other than the gift of happiness, blah blah blah).
  58. Get an agent (literary or theatre)
  59. Go to a sports bar without cringing, by personal choice
  60. Ride a rollercoaster
  61. Hold a snake
  62. Spend a day wandering around a museum (not art gallery!)
Letters to keep in your bedside drawer - 2
Monday, 18 June 2007
It’s been almost 5 years since we were last in touch. You told me you'd sold my engagement ring to buy a new one for the wife you married 7 months after I broke up with you. Class.

That ring; it was beautiful and I loved it. Now, I think on it and something in my lower belly recoils in horror. I imagine it on my hand, and can still feel that trapped sensation again. Especially the suffocating one which consumed me when you replaced the ring on my finger while I was in a coma, following one doped up statement made following surgery. Remember? After I’d already thrown it at you and called the whole thing off.

I doubted myself so much after that. Had I actually wanted it back? Did I want YOU back? Were we going to be okay?

You made me forget how to listen to my intuition.

Goldenboy. Everyone loved you. Including me (at the start, at least). You were comfortable in amongst my family. Silent, but no one expects anything else – it's MY family, after all. People would ask you if you wanted tea, leave the room, then return to ask me if I also wanted some. My grandmother would phone me across the world to see how you were in the jungle. "Good I think, and my PhD's going well too, thanks!".

So I kept your dirty little secret for you. On your behalf. I didn’t want to see them doubt themselves as much as I did. I didn’t want to have those who I believe in implicitly held up to the light before me and be found to be ‘only’ human after all. I kept it quiet.

I took years to bring myself to divulge that while I’d been sticking swabs up chickens bums in Hamilton (the glory of PhDship), you’d been partaking similarly of transvestite hookers. I didn’t even know there WERE any in the city in which we lived. I kept it quiet.

When you told me where they worked, I couldn’t drive down that street for a year. The new house I moved into, after I moved out of our one (with the vegetable garden I'd made (well, Leigh and Nigel contributed significantly too!), the jasmine (Mamma had purchased, I had wound around the pillars), the fucking swan plants bearing monarch caterpillars (that had to be 'culled' halfway through the season to keep the plants alive - I DID that caterpillar cull!)) was around the corner. The circuitous routes I had to take to avoid “that building”. I kept it quiet.

I never complained when Mamma decided she’d keep in touch with you. Never mentioned your proclivities when she was so disappointed that she you hadn't informed her of your impending nupitals. Hell, I let her entertain you in the house I was living in with my then boyfriend. (He took me to a movie (I think). Possibly not. Possibly we went and did all the glass recycling. It’s good therapy to hear that glass break.) I kept it all quiet.

I learnt things from you though, I'm not saying I didn't, and maybe there were lessons that the universe needed for me to learn. I learnt about rugby: the offside rule, "Pass it, don’t kick it. Kick it, don’t pass it" etc. I learnt about ex-girlfriends (whose car I was driving, whose boyfriend I was living with, whose stereo I played my music with and danced in the lounge to). I learnt about ex-wives (when you were – thankfully – sent packing by the beautiful one you ended up marrying). I learnt more about mother-in-laws than I ever needed to. I learnt about fidelity (my own, and others). I learnt how to carry a secret, even one that eats me up inside.

Things are improving inside my head. I think (either that, or I’m slowly killing off sufficient memory cells that my level of caring has dropped). I can once again consider going out on stage wearing a dress, sparkly high heels shoes (into which a bloke's foot would probably fit), false eyelashes and a feather boa – DESPITE the fact I know that my ‘ladyboy’ good looks are likely what attracted you in the first place (I wish I’d just gone as a Witch, instead, and saved myself the three years of heartache).

Unfortunately, the self-doubt still lingers, it still pervades every relationship that I’ve had since, to the point of self-sabotage – to make sure that all current and future beaus will go the same way.

Possibly not the whore house round the corner from where I live, but y’know, A-way.



posted by Nomes @ Monday, June 18, 2007  
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