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The Doings of Darkjewelz
 
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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in darkjewelz's LiveJournal:

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Tuesday, September 11th, 2007
9:52 pm
Ive been in Brazil a week now.

Before that, I spent a week at a festival called Tribe of Doris, where we had a stall fixing and selling drums. I also had tonsillitis for five days and then came down with a fully blown cold complete with temperature for two days. I was terrified Id have to travel like that but luckily got better just in time to put my back out really badly, so badly that I couldnt stand for long periods of time.

However, the aforementioned woes were forgotten for a while when I discovered that Id got AHRC funding for my PhD the day before I left. Im over the moon but also apprehensive about the amount of work I will have to do and my relationship with my supervisor. I get the impression he hasnt been happy with me recently and Im not sure if this is fair or not. Still, the AHRC must think Im OK.

Luckily we broke the journey by staying overnight in Lisbon. We had a great time there and R took lots of photos of an old district called Alfama.

The next day was the ten hour plane journey to Rio which I managed with two heatpacks for my back. It wasnt too bad. We stayed in Rio for three nights with some of my relatives. We went up the Sugar loaf and up to the Christ Redemptor as well as seeing Copacabana and Ipanema etc. It was good, but Rio is a big city with lots of crime so we didnt always feel one hundred percent at ease in the street.

Our next stop was Foz Iguacu, where we saw the gigantic waterfalls from the Argentinian side on the first day. This was incredible and you can get close enough in several different places to be wet by the spray. It is absolutely stunning.

The next day we were intending to go to the Brazilian side of the waterfalls but decided to go to a birdpark first. W saw loads of parrots, toucand and goodness knows what there which was great, but when we came out, we didnt have time to see the falls because it was a Brazilian national holiday and the queues were a km long. That was a disappointment.

We had limited time that day bcause we had to catch a bus to Bonito. The bus itself was state of the art, but the journey was 16 hours and it was hard to sleep. There was a two hout wait to change buses in the middle of nowhere too, at 4am, which was unpleasant. Not so bad for me, aided as I was by good old Dramil, which you can get over the counter here. It knocked me out cold for most of the journey.

Bonito has been great. Yesterday we did horse riding and swimming in the river and today we swam in a different part of the river that was full of fish. Big fish. One of them bit my finger when I tried to feed it.

Tomorrow were visiting a cave with a blue lagoon and then going swimming again before heading to the Pantanal.

Byw for now,

J.
Sunday, July 29th, 2007
12:18 am
London, Buddhafield, Tuebingen and Oblivion!
After having a bit of a shit time for a few weeks dong loads of work an hardly leaving the house, the last few weeks have been awesome.

First I went to London for a few days to see my cousins from Brazil, who were visiting England for the fist time. I took them to all the usual tourist sights and Camden Town. The visit culminated in a talk I gave at a conference, which went well. My dad come to watch, it was the first time he'd seen me give a paper and it was great to have him there.

When I got back it was Rs birthday. Amongst other things, I got him his first computer game: Oblivion. This had been thoroughly recommended and not without reason: it's amazing. Unfortunately I am starting to question the wisdom of giving him this: he's on it for hours every day!

A couple of days later we went to Buddhafield, where we played two gigs and taught workshops every day. Despite the rain and having to schlep huge quantities of heavy stuff around a muddy campsite we had fun and the gigs went well. It rained very heavily on the Saturday, so we decided to stay for the Sunday in the hope that our tent would dry by Monday.

Sunday was an absolute mud bath. There was plenty of naked mud-surfing, some of it by some quite fit guys....there was also loads of partying and drumming. Good old British spirit. I think we partied harder because of the mud, not inspite of it! In many ways it was the best day, and out tent did dry by Monday. We were very lucky.

Soon after that, I went to Tuebingen in Germany for five days, to give a paper at the conference for the academic study of esotericism. I had an absolutely fantastic time. Tuebingen was beautiful and I met loads of interesting people and had interesting conversations.

Well, that;s it, a rather abridged account. Now its back to work.
Wednesday, June 20th, 2007
11:16 am
Warning: moan.
I don't like to moan too much on LJ coz I fugure "who wants to hear about all the bad bits?" but today I'm thinking "what the hell." Today LJ can be my invisible counsellor to whom I can let off steam.

I got up this morning and pulled my intercostal muscles. I feel like a butterfly that's had its wings pulled off. I've had back problems for days due to sitting at the computer. This happens from time to time. It gives me a splitting headache. I've had a pretty much continuous headache for weeks but I don't like taking pain killers because they upset my stomach. Regadless of taking painkillers or not, I've had indigestion several times a week now for months.

I seem to always be tired. I get up in the morning and I'm tired. I'm tired in the afternoon, I'm tired in the evening. I'm always effing tired and I do nothing except sit at the computer all day. Maybe that's why eh. I know I should go to the gym, but at the moment it feels like I can't afford to take the time off.

I've just realised  I have to rewrite an entire paper. I made a mistake about the content, spent ages on it, and now may as well scrap it.

I'm sick of this house. Its small, dark and claustrophobic. Both of us are here, all day, everyday, which is claustrophobic in itself. Its freezing in the winter and boiling and stuffy in the summer (like now). There's too much stuff in here (little stuff by most people's standards, just too little space to put it in) and it's an enormous effort to keep the place tidy. Half my day seems to vanish tring to kep the house in an acceptble state. Endless cooking, wasing up, clothes washing ect. Just keeping these things in order eems to involve so much effort.

I'm starting to feel like the walls are closing in around me. Going away  only seems to make it worse as I become unused to it. It so nice and sunny, I want to be out there. I'm hoping we can go to Avebury later but it looks like the weather's going to be shit.
Monday, June 18th, 2007
10:49 pm
Glasgow and gothic tea party
I got back from Glasgow yesterday. I'ts the first time I've been to Scotland and I've always wanted to go. I stayed with a uni friend of mine who is is also doing a PhD and her partner, who is a lecturer.

On Friday, I met up with another frind in the morning and we did a speedy tour of Glasgow, taking in the botanical garden, the oldest house in Glasgow, a gorgeous cemetary called the necropolis on a hill overlooking the city, a cathedral and a museum of religions. After lunch we checked out another rather eclectic museum which included stuffed animals, Egyptian mummies and a flashing Elvis. You've got to have a flashing Elvis. We also had a look around the university cloisters, which are stunning, like an Oxbridge college.

On Friday night we went to the reform synagogue. It was a small congregation and a great building. I must admit I was a little bit jealous, their builoding was better than ours in Bristol!

After synagogue we went to a restaurant called Stravaigin 2 and I had some yummy vegetarian haggis and we shared three puddings.

Glasgow is a very nice city. I didn't really expect it. Leafy avenues, lots of museums and all of them free. I was impressed.

But I was really interested in the hills and on Saturday we drove to Loch Lomond. The weather wasn't too bad, it was grey but not raining, and we saw plenty of lochs and mountains, as well as a small castle. It was very peaceful and the scenery was stunning.

In the evening we had a dinner party. There were eight of us, lots of interesting things to talk about (most of us were involved in academia in some way) and plenty of wine.

I got back early on Sunday morning (shattered) and in the afternoon I went to the gothic tea party in Bristol. I thought it went very well, with just the right number of people for the room and more than enough chocolate cake. A very pleasant way to spend the afternoon. I finished off the day with  friend, having the perfect chips in cafe Kino, the little vegan place near Jamaica street in Stokes Croft. Recommended.
Sunday, June 10th, 2007
4:01 pm
Brazil
I'm going to Brazil! Yay! It took me all day to book the flight. I've still go to get the airpasses, and we plan to visit quite a few places. We'll be away fro the whole of September. I can't wait, but I am nervous, as it is a rather dangerous place, as well as being beautiful.
Tuesday, June 5th, 2007
10:20 pm
Sunrise Celebration
I'm worried I may be on the verge ofpsychosis and need to start taking it a little easier on my body. I went to a banging preogressive-psy-trance/ UV birthday party in Trowbridge the Saturday before last and was barely recovered frm the exesses of that befre I had to get up at half six to make my way down to Exeter to give a paper at a conference. I was shitting myself and feeling terribl but I managed it. I then came home the same day, packed the car up and went to the Sunrise celebration festival. We got there on Tuesday, and it didn't start till Thursday, but since we'd hear it was going to piss down, we thought we'd better go early and put the tent up while it was dry.  It was a good move. By Thursday the weather had cleared up and it was a cracking festival. Loads of crazy people, some of them my friends (!) great drumnming and even more excesses. We saw the Ozric Tentacles, a goth band from Bath called Karma Deva who are very good and my mates band, Emunah, who are also very good. Emunah do Kletzmer/Russian/hip-hop drum and bass rap. Can you evn imagine how that sounds and how that works? I can only assure you that it does and that it sounds great.

We got home yesterday. I feel like a zombie. I'm so thankful for the shower and the (non festival) loo.

I've got so much to do it scares me, but I feel that I must live life to the full and not waste a second. Unfrtunately my physical body doesn't always agree with my attitude. I think it needs some rest and relaxation. I have an eye infection. Its nasty.

Recently, to chill out, I've been watching the frst series of Thundercats on DVD. I absoluteloy love nostalgia cartoons. Thundercats was particularly good. Cities of Gold was another favourite I haven't sourced yet. And Around the World with Willie Fogg. Those were the good old days. I met someone who knew the grand-daughterof the guy who invented Bagpuss at the festival. Small world eh?
Thursday, May 17th, 2007
7:37 pm
Egypt
My holiday in Egypt was fantastic and I'm quite depressed to be back! The only good thing about it is seeing R.

My friend has a flat in Sharm el Sheik, which is a bog standard touristy kind of place, where ninety percent of the population appears to be Russian. Egypt is mostly desert. I've never seen so much dust and sand in my life. Its also mountainous desert, which is quite interesting.

The best things about the holiday were the food and the snorkeling. I believe we ended up going snorkelling four times. The Red Sea is the bluest sea I have ever seen and it is easily the best snorkelling I have ever done, even better than Thailand. Its just like being in a tropical aquarium.

We went to Cairo for a day and saw the pyramids. It was worth the visit but one day was enough. cairo was like hell. Forty degree dry heat and there had been sand storms the previous day. The architecture is drab to say the least, consisting mostly of half-built brown box shaped flats which look like they've emerged from the surrounding sand. We did see one old fashioned house, which was beautiful, but most of these have been buldozed to make way for more "practical" dwellings.

We also had dinner with the bedouin in the desert. They had a powerful telescope through which I saw Saturn with its rings, and a variety of other heavenly objects. As well as being perfectly dark in the desert, it is also perfectly silent. When we all agreed to be quiet for a minute, it was the most silent experience I have ever had. Its amazing how rarely we experience true silence.

Another highlight was when out bedouin friend and another friend took us to the mangroves. We had a whole beach to ourselves in the middle of nowhere. It was so peaceful. When the tide went out there were thousands of black starfish left in the shallows.
Monday, April 23rd, 2007
8:14 pm
The Bath Goth Meetup last week was awesome. We had eighteen people, and took over the downstairs room of the Hob. This is the most we've ever had.

Before the meet I had dinner with janinemarriottand she gave me a banana holder! This is one of the most useful things I've ever been given. It looks like a sex toy but actually is a yellow, banana shaped plastic box that fits most bananas and stops them going all mushy in your bag. Genius!

On Friday night I went to the synagogue for the first time in ages. It was a small congregation but I really enjoyed it.

On Saturday we went to a fairy themed birthday party and I wore my purple fairy outfit. I've wanted an excuse to wear that for two years. Its fab and includes a purple halo that looks a bit like an afro.

Tonight we're off to see The Curse of the Golden Flower. Then I'm in Exeter for the weekend and after that I'm off to Egypt. Yay!!
Saturday, April 14th, 2007
1:52 pm
We had a fab day yesterday. We drove down to Dartmoor and walked in some very pretty countryside, including some very strange rock formations. R got me a purple rose made of feathers!

Later, we went to As birthday party, which was the usual psychedelic mayhem. There's another party next week. Does this crew ever stop partying?!
Wednesday, April 11th, 2007
11:12 pm
The Easter break has been pretty good really, despite my cold. On Saturday we had a short band rehersal followed by a trip to Glastonbury.

I love Glastonbury. We browsed all the hippy crystal and pagan shops for a pressie for my friend and found a very nice green lady wall plaque. It was a glorious sunny day and we went for a walk in the ruined Abbey. R took some photos. Its been almost seven years since we last went there. It was one of the first things we did as a couple.

We had dinner at my new favourite Thai place in Bath: Java. They serve my favourite Thai salad, som tum, made with green papaya and lots of chilli. It was lush.

After that we popped down to the funfair. I love the look of funfairs. We didn't go on any rides as R doesn't like them and I don't want ot go on my own. You need someone to scream with! It's there until the fourteenth. Maybe someone else is interested?

On Sunday we drove to Crook peak near Cheddar, which is a splendid walk. I've lived here all these years and didn't know it was there. Its the only pointed peak in the Mendips. You could almost be in Wales. Again it was quite sunny and we even got a bit burnt.

In the evening is was vortex and I spend most of the evening chatting to lady_of_the_dea, M and E. I was too tired and still slightly too ill to dance. R wasn't. He danced all night.

On Tuesday I saw an old school teacher of mine that I haven't seen for almost ten years. I met him a while ago purely by chance and he happened to be in Bath with his very cute little daughter so he got in touch. It was very entertaining talking about old times.

Today I met up with malabar and we had some more Thai food (I can never get enough) then had a tea at a very smart Alsatian cafe in Bath. We had a really good chat.

R is such a sweetheart. He recorded Desperate Housewives for me while I was out! I'm off to watch it now!
Tuesday, April 10th, 2007
8:20 pm
CAMPAIGN AGAINST SCAMS
Next time you get one of those emails teling you that a large amount of money will be deposited into your bank account if you tell them your account details, tell them to give you a ring. Then go and find the most expensive chatline you can, out of the back of a magazine or paper and send it to them. They probably wont appreciate paying 1.50 a minute to speak to "horny suzie" or whatever.

Alternatively, just sound really enthusiastic and send them fake details. It will waste their time and they deserve it. If everyone did this, they might think twice.
Friday, April 6th, 2007
12:00 pm
Seders and parties
I had a great time in London apart from one thing: I managed to start coming down with a cold the second day I was there. It wasn't too bad initially and I enjoyed myself but yesterday I was supposed to be at work and I had to have the day off. I was so bad I soent the whole day in bed feeling very whoozy and swollen.

I started fantasising about having my tonsils out. I know its probably not good for you to remove a part of your body but mine swell up so often that it would be nice if they weren't there. But I'm guessing that this would only cause some other part to swell up instead.

The illness is probably due to the heavy night I had on Saturday. M came round, and we all got in a taxi to Trowbridge to go to a house party. We were there till half four and it was excellent.

I have decided to enlist the help of the Trobridge crew in throwing the mother of all parties for my birthday in October. I intend to hire out Invention Arts, and then get them to help with the DJing and lighting. Then we'd have the usual drumming plus a few bands. I'm going to start planning it now and handing out invitations at festivals.

Anyway, back to London, on the way there I had tea with an old uni friends, then the first seder night I spent at Gs house. G is the father of my friend J. All of us went to Israel together back in 2000, for a wedding and a holiday. Unfortunately my friend J wasn't there this time but Gs partner, friend and auntie were and a splendid evening was had by all.

The second night I spend at another old friends house, at the seder of a an unconventional Jewish group called Jewdas. Check out http://www.jewdas.org/contents.htm if you're interested in Jewish stuff. The food was great, the people were interesting and the conversation inspiring. I loved it. Unfortunately by this point  I was already coming down with a cold and by the next day I was feeling really mashed. I still managed to have dinner with A, a nice Laksa in a Singaporean restaurant.
Sunday, March 25th, 2007
5:57 pm
The computer seems to be working fine, but we are still waiting for the receipts promised by the paranoid nutter in London. I now have my own work station with the old computer for word-processing on a proper computer table. Its so great to have my own space with a decent chair and enough room for my books. Its also great to be able to look at the screen face-on.

I've finally finished the AHRC application and I sent it off today. I am happy with it. Fingers crossed. At least I know I did my best and didn't slack.

I went to a great psy trance party in Glastonbury on Friday. I did quite a lot of dancing, aided purely by caffeine. I also bought a whole load of books from the Speaking Tree, as if I didn't have enough books.

On Saturday we did a drumming workshop in bristol for kids with long-term illnesses. It was very pleasant. After that, we went to the violin shop and I tried out about fifteen fiddles. I have taken three home on trial. One of them is £500, the other 1000 and the other 1500. The best one is the 1000 one, but it is only a little better than the 500 one. Is it really worth spending 500 more on something that is only a little better? The 500 one is also the best looking. I'd like to say that doesn't matter at all but it does a little bit.

I had planned to go to Indidious on Saturday night but when we got home from the fiddle shop we had dinner and  fell asleep. When we woke up we both felt crap and couldn't face it, which was a shame as I'd been looking forward to it.

I've got started on my gothic dolly today. A while ago I bought a porcerlain doll in a manky brown outfit for two quid in a charity shop. I've stripped her down, bought her a long black wig and some black velvet, which will soon be a dress. I'm thinking of also making a little corset. At the end she'll be a gothic babe! I'm thinking about how to get a few piercings on her, and some make-up!

Its almost passover and I now have two seders lined up with friends in London. I'm sure I was born into the wrong religion. My family are nominal Catholics but I've always been convinced that I am really a Jew! I am a lapsed Jew, I might add, the sort that enjoys traditional customs without being too religious. I was very religious when I was younger, but I seem to have grown out of that.
Wednesday, March 21st, 2007
11:45 pm
A good old moan...
Gawd, I really need to moan. I feel like |'m on the brink of a nervous breakdown. We bought a second-hand computer from sme guy on ebay and then picked it up in London. It was supposed to have the receipts for the components with it, which was important since it didn't have a warranty. When we got it home we realised that some receipts weren't there and some of them seemed wrong so R phoned him up. To cut a long story short, we reached a point last night when we thought that everything was ok and that the computer was probably kosher. Then we got a shitty email from this bloke which basically amounted to a mild threat along the lines of "if you don't give me good feedback on ebay I wont help you out if the computer develops problems." We decided to leave it until the moring, when he phoned at 8.30. I spoke to him, decided to ignore the mild threat and he seemed pleasant enough. Once again he asked for feedback, but we thought we'd leave it until we'd got the computer up and running and we're sure that it worked. Then we got an even shitter email demanding feedback and accusng us of racisim! I replied to this, politely affirming that this was not the case and asking him to put himself in out shoes, we had good grounds to be worried and it was nothing personal. Then this evening there was another whole string of short, unpleasant emails from him. I'm baffled as to why this guy is neurotically keen on feedback. The stupid thing is, we were all ready to give him the good feedbck, befor he started bombarding us with offensive emails! I don't think he's going to get it now... We're starting to wonder whether this guy is alright in the head.

On top of this, I noticed today that my new keyboard has a whole load of horrible scratches on it. I don't understand how this has happened since I haven't had it long and hardly played it. What's more, the scratches go right up to the top of the keys, which wouldn't happen in normal playing. Its like a child has scraped them with a coin.

And I have lost the sodding car key. I have no idea where its gone. Luckily we have one more but if I lose that we're up shit creek without a paddle. 

Finally, I feel like a pathetic hamster on a wheel that spends its life running and going nowhere. I do know that I am going somehwere but right now it feels like this Phd work takes forever and never gets done. I still havn't finished the AHRC application or managed to start my essay. Aargh! 
Friday, March 16th, 2007
8:39 pm
What have I been up to recently?

Well, I enjoyed my new found driving freedom and popped over to neyrissa's new house in Emerson's Green one evening. Its a lovely house. Its very civilised in Emerson's Green, and peaceful, but I'm not sure if I would choose to live there. There are houses to suit all budgets yet somehow all the houses look the same. Everything seems sanitised, prescribed. There's a supermarket where everyone goes shopping, and an entertainment complex where everyone enjoys themselves...people go to work, do their shopping, go to the cinema...am I making sense? I can't think of an eloquent way of putting it but there's something creepy about it...like some sort of scary futuristic world where everyone's life follows a pattern determined by the government. Am I bonkers or does anyone else get this impression?

I gave a paper at a conference in Bristol. That went well and people were surprisingly interested to hear about astral bodies and death in nineteenth century esotericism.  The best bit was the socialising. Its good at these conferences when nobody knows anybody else, because you meet people, but there was a scary moment at the beginning of a social where everyone had already "paired up" and I was left wondering how I was going to break into someone's conversation so I didn't have to be the only person standing alone.

I also went to Exeter, where I had an interview to make sure everything was on track. I also went to a course on academic plagiarism (no, not how to do it, how to avoid it) and one on creative thinking in research.

I stayed with joysilence again, which was fun. I discovered that for some bizarre reason I am not allergic to Gordon her lovely cat so I spent some time making a big fuss of him. I like lap cats. If you like cats, check out  www.catsinsinks.com.

Last weekend we visited Rs folks up in Brecon, which meant walks in lovely mountainous places. This was great for me as I desparately neede to get out into the countryside. I feel like I've been cooped up too long this winter.

Then on Monday we went to the Slimbridge wetlands centre, which is home to many varieties of wetland bird. R took the opportunity to take some photos. The best ones, I thought, were the flamingoes. Some of them were very bright indeed.

I've been thinking about selling my violin and buying a new one. I tried a few in Bath and liked one and I tried a few in Bristol and liked one. I'm quite excited about this.l I've never liked the sound of my fiddle, depite the fact that it is a very good one. This has meant that I haven't been that keen on playing but it was so much fun to play and have a good sound come out.

I'm doing another conference tomorrow, which is good and bad. Bad because I haven't been feeling all that well and have a feeling I might be worse tomorrow. I might have to take a load of painkillers and grin and bear it.

Immediately afterwards we've got to go to London. On route to my parents, we've got to drop something off and pick something else up, in two different places, which means we'll be arriving late at night and absolutely whacked.

On Sunday its my dad's sixtieth birthday party. I can't believe he's sixty. Seems like yesterday he was fifty. I'm looking forward to it as we'll be seeing family friends I haven't seen for years.
Tuesday, February 27th, 2007
8:42 pm
I've been so busy recently that I've had to pretty much give up watching TV. I get up in the morning and work until I have my dinner in the evening. Even after that I seem to find things that need doing.

I had a very pleasant stay in Exeter last Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. I went up on Saturday evening, as it was joysilence's birthday. A few people congregated to eat nibbles and cake and watch films.

Then on Sunday I indulged in a bit of retail therapy for the first time in ages. I wasn't that successful, but at least I wasn't staring at a computer. I met up with my friend P and we had lunch and coffee.

I've got myself a new perfume. Its called Beyond Paradise by Estee Lauder. It smells like Jasmine and more. Its amazing how a new perfume can make you feel like a different person and lift your mood.

The big highlight of my Exeter visit was winning a research relay I took part in. It was between seven students and we each had to give a ten minute presentation and mark each other on style, content, slides etc. I wasn't expecting to win and was overjoyed. Its great for the old CV.

The next day I went to a workshop about the nature of a PhD. It feels like a rollercoaster right now. I am writing a chapter about the Cathars, editing two other pieces of work and writing and putting together presentations. I have one of these this Friday. *chews fingers nervously.*

So I was thankful to do something different at the weekend. On Saturday we went to High Wicombe for a drumming event. We did the photography and video. I saw a friend of mine there who makes bodhrans, and he had a very special deep one with a reindeer skin: I bought it! I'm thinking of taking it down to the local Irish session.

On Sunday we went to Cardiff and Castell Coch. I haven't been there for ages, its fantastic. Its one of the few historic places you can actually take photos. We wandered around Cardiff for a bit, then had dinner at this great Gujurati restaurant. Yum.

Yesterday I went to visit neyrissa at her new house in Emerson's Green. She gave me a bat! Yay! One more for my collection!
Friday, February 9th, 2007
12:47 pm
To top off the week of ill health I have been enjoying, I now have a cold, complete with swollen glands and sore throat, and two ulcers, one in my cheek and one on my tongue. Nice.

On a happier note, I have booked a week long holiday to Egypt in May. I'm going with token_iraqi and staying at her place there. Can't wait to see the pyramids and the desert!

On another happy note, I have bought a keyboard. It is fantastic, and has a great piano sound and full sized keys. We're going to integrate it with what we're doing with the band right now. All I need is some software. Any ideas anyone?
Wednesday, February 7th, 2007
8:49 pm
I'm as sick as a parrot. I came down with this horrible stomach bug last night and spent the whole night to-ing and fro-ing from the bathroom, consequently getting no sleep. It was excruciatingly painful and has been for most of today too. It's finally subsiding a little bit now.

I think my immune system was low following a particularly debauched party on Saturday which resulted in a three day queasy hangover. This part at least, was self induced. It was worth it though, I thought. The party was in an amazing house with a good space for a dancefloor, full of really cool people. There were three DJs and I heard some of the best uplifting trance I've heard for ages.  Why, why, Oh why don't they play that stuff in any Bristol clubs? What is the fascination for dirgy, downbeat, moronic repetitive noise in Bristol clubs? Beats me.

Last Wednesday I did a photoshoot at dylan's house. I was pleased with the results I've seen on R's camera. I'm not looking too bad. It's amazing what you can do with a bit of makeup.

The weekend before that, I was at a university conference where I gave a paper to an audience of MA students. It was a sympathetic audience but they asked tricky questions. I feel more confident now about speaking to groups of people, which is just as well, because I have five conferences lined up before the end of this academic year!!

I stayed with joysilence, which was way better than the youth hostel, despite a crazy incident involving me believeing myself to be locked out when in fact I wasn't. (The door was open, I just didn't realise it!) We watched a movie called "Manhunter" which is a bit like a cross between Seven and Silence of the Lambs, except older and possibly better.

I've been doing some major thinking about my PhD thesis over the last couple of weeks. I've decided on new foci and structure and am now feeling a lot more positive that it is my own. I was starting to feel a bit depressed about the whole endeavor, it can be so hard to motivate yourself, sitting in front of the same desk day after day.

Bleargh! I hope my tummy feels better tomorrow. I'm supposed to be going into work and can't really afford to take a day off.
Tuesday, January 23rd, 2007
8:23 pm
Brrrrrrrrrrrr, it's bloody freezing today isn't it? Its good to be feeling a bit more perky as last week I felt shit and hormonal last week.

After a really boring week writing an essay at home and working, we were desperate to go out on Saturday night. R discovered that there was a cool band playing at Moles, and that he knew one of the band members. So we went down there and it was fab; calypso, reggae, african fusion, all upbeat and funky. R and I both went on stage and did a bit of African drumming. That was a real buzz. I'd had enough JD not to be nervous about that but little enough so that I could still actually play.

I seem to be developing a taste in whiskey. Good stuff, whiskey, especially scotch.

I handed in my essay on Friday and this week I have to prepare a talk for the weekend. Apart from that, which isn't too much work,  I'm free, so I've been socialising. M&R came to Bath yesterday and we went ot a local bar I've been meaning to try for age, Lounge. Since I was only having one drink I thought I might as well make it a good one and had a glass of champagne. Yum. The only downer was the smoke in the place. I cannot wait until july when they ban it. Hurrah, my clothes wont stink anymore when I go out.

Today I went to Glos Rd in Bristol for some Thai food with M and managed to find a cool gothic petticoat in Repsycho, the vintage clothing shop.

I have a wisdom tooth coming through. Ouch. I had this pain in the back of my mouth and when I put my tongue there there was a new tooth poking out. It's very weird. Does this mean I am now officially wise?
Tuesday, January 16th, 2007
8:44 pm
Auntie, Slimes, duckies
We went to London at the weekend. My aunt from Brazil was over, and we spent a nice day wandering around Highgate and Hampstead, looking at Kenwood House and eating in a sixteenth century pub.

Saturday evening was my friend from Bath's birthday, and she and a few others had come to Slimelight especially, where we met them. I wasn't feeling all that great, amongst other reasons due to my complete failure at fastening my fake dreads to my ponytail, and, in my opinion, not looking as "Slimelight" cool as I'd hoped to look. Tricky business this falls thing. It can really hurt, and tear your hair out.

We got back to Bristol on Sunday for me to go to bibliogoths. The book this month was Poppy Z Brites "Lost Souls" which I suggested out of curiosity. In general we thought it had a lot of self-indulgent, pretentious and teenage parts, but also a few interesting observations. Most people seemed to agree that it was well written and descriptive despite its over-use of the simile "smells like altars."

I'm handing in an essay at the end of this week, so I did the only thing I could do in such a situation, I went into town to pick up my rubber ducks which had arrived from the States. I also bought somes eyes for my bat-in-the-making. I had to get out of the house.

I'm going to write an article on alternative clothing shops in Bath and Bristol for Alt Fashion Magazine. That should give me another excuse not to do my work. Any ideas appreciated, although I'm fairly certain which shops I'm going to include.

And its the Bath Goth Meetup tomorrow, for any of you reading this that need reminding!

Right, I'm off to sew my bat now.
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