Aaaaanyway. I am having First World Problems evening tonight, because, as you can probably discern, I am absolutely brimming with them, each more trivial and pathetic than the last. And we haven't done First World Problems for ages, so it must be time. Before I launch in, though, here are a few nice things, because I am ridiculously over-privileged really and have a nice life and all that.
Delphic were very excellent live this week. I recommend. They are not unsightly to look at either, which always helps. Also, gigs in Belgium are usually teeny weeny and this was no exception, which means you can get stalkerishly close. Often bands look puzzled to find themselves in Belgium, as well they might, and it seems to the observer as if they haven't got a clue where they are or why. Delphic were no exception, but they did a good set anyway.
I made masala lamb chops (yes, I know Ramsay is an arse, but they looked tasty). They look good. I have put them in the freezer, because I started drinking gin when I was supposed to be eating yesterday and the whole dinner thing got a bit forgotten in a morass of shitty French tv and self-pity. But Sunday night will be masala lamb chop night, and that is a very good thing indeed.
I love Julian Casablancas's album. Yes, I am a few months late on this. That is because I live in Belgium, the spiritual (and desired fiscal) home of Johnny Halliday and things take a very very long time to get here through that scary hole in the ground under the sea. This and this especially make me very happy walking the dog, and it takes a lot to make me happy walking the dog, which is a hateful business full of mud and sticks and enforced conversation with lunatics, and not at all the elegant saunter to a pavement cafe I always imagined.
There are now two music things in this list (and Vampire Weekend on Monday, hurrah) which makes me very edgy indeed, because music related posts always degenerate horribly. Moving on!
I am going to Paris tomorrow for dinner. Hurray, hurray hurray. I will be tying the dog (yes, he's coming) to a tree outside Ladurée and emptying the place of St Honoré aux Framboises and violet éclairs.
My bedroom is an endless source of delight.
Right, enough of the Polyanna crap. This is not why you come here.
My first world problems. Please do add your own.
1. Clothing problems
The light says 'spring' and my brain believes it. From in here you can't tell it's 2°, so I skip out in - real example from this morning follows - an ultra thin cotton sleeveless tshirt and a cropped cotton jacket, with ballet flats. Erreur fatale. I had to shelter in Bricorama for warmth and ended up buying a storage heater and 33 lightbulbs to justify my presence.
Worse even than coldness, are the light-induced wardrobe disasters. Somehow, the things I have been wearing all winter have ceased to cut it and I am trying to get clever with my clothes with unspeakable results. Monday, I recall, was particularly atrocious. Some kind of hideous, unkempt and slightly gothic combo of far too short black skirt, black APC blazer (lovely, but with a hole in the shoulder) and beautiful but somehow wrong Philip Lim top. Tuesday was not much better, with me attempting this sleeveless dress with a long sleeved tshirt in a way that might have worked on someone ten years younger and more dikdik like. The change of season thing is always tricky. I should just brazen it out in my opaques and shrouds until May at the earliest, really. I can't buy anything else, ever. EVER, I tell you.
2. Transport problems
It would be tasteless to elaborate on this to any extent because the reasons are properly terrible, but it will take me over three hours and two changes to get to Paris tomorrow, and the same back on Sunday, which means getting up wrongly early with what will doubtless prove to be a disgusting hangover. Also, there is no way of getting hold of Eurostar tickets at the moment, they are simply not selling them, so how exactly I will be getting to London next Thursday is somewhat mysterious. I will however be getting there even if it kills me.
I have done plenty of practical things for the house, but nowhere near enough writing recently, which makes me cross. Chapter 8 has had to be stamped on very hard and broken into tiny fragments. It is necessary but depressing to end up with less words. I still have no driving licence, ID card or health insurance piece of plastic following my late November wallet theft. This is ridiculous. I am ridiculous. I have all this time and I am piteously bad at making the most of it.
I am less good at being on my own than I thought. I think I had failed to factor in the 'only at work 2 days a week' part, which means that I could, theoretically see NOONE but the caissières at Delhaize and the elderly dog walkers for 5 days. This doesn't happen, of course, I force people to talk to me. But my belief in my own suitability for a hermit-like life has been fractured. The habit of living with someone, built up over 16 years, is hard to shake, and I was stupid and complacent and short-sighted to think it wouldn't be an issue for me. It is. The house is very empty now, when the boys have been away for over ten days. The dog helps, a little. But there's no point in commenting to the dog on the idiocy of Belgian tv, all he will do is bring me a half chewed slipper in the vanishingly small hope that I might throw it for him.
Compounding the loneliness, I am carrying all manner of guilt at the moment about a myriad transgressions and stupidities and selfishnesses. I should be a catholic, at least I could go and get ashed and be properly penitent. Instead I just mope.
Also, I do miss the children. I feel a bit unmanned by their absence, if that makes sense. Unmothered. Aimless. That isn't a first world problem, per se, but at least I know they are playing Nintendo and having swimming lessons, and according to Fingers, eating different kinds of sausages every day at their grandparents. And haven't been kidnapped to be child soldiers or whatever. So I give this one semi-first world status only.
5. Truly trivial
You can't buy turmeric in Brussels. ANYWHERE.
I still loathe the haircut.
Everyone has been watching fabulous appointment tv in the UK this week (my Big Fat Gipsy Wedding, the Brits), and all I have to amuse me is po-faced reportage about dodgy white goods repairmen and French farmers in spas in paper pants. I need Brain Twin to come and sort me out some dodgy downloads NOW before I start clawing at the textured salmon walls.
Ok, that's me. I could go on infinitely, but I think you deserve a turn.