dolorosa_12: (pagan kidrouk)
Today is a public holiday, which has meant a three-day weekend. We've been very fortunate with the weather -- although summer in the UK hasn't really been a summer at all this year, it's as if we got the entire season these three days in Cambridge, with warm weather and bright sunshine. Although I have spent some of the weekend doing rather boring life admin-type stuff, I have managed to pack in just the right amount of fun stuff too.

On Saturday evening, Matthias and I joined a lot of friends from our former academic department to farewell one of our fellow PhD students, [twitter.com profile] BeccaMerkelbach, who, having completed her PhD, is returning to Germany for an academic job there. It was a somewhat bittersweet farewell, since she was leaving in part due to Brexit (that is, while the academic job market being what it is meant that she was willing to move countries for a job, Brexit meant she was not prepared to look for jobs in the UK at all) -- the first of many friends I know of who are leaving the UK for that reason. I'm glad she's got a job (they're not easy to come by in medieval literature!), but I'm sad, as always, to see a friend move on.

Yesterday we went to a farmers market/temporary outdoor beer garden with food trucks run by Thirsty, which is a wine and beer seller that also runs a bar out of its store, if that makes sense. They've been holding the beer garden out near the Museum of Technology by the river for the entire summer, and we haven't made as much use of this as we would have liked, partly because it's a good forty-five-minute walk from our house. Given the summer is almost over, we're determined to get there as much as possible. Yesterday were were there around midday, and met up with [personal profile] naye and [personal profile] doctorskuld, and hung out for a few hours eating food from the food truck and catching up. After that, I met up with [personal profile] nymeth after she'd finished work, and we sat in a park drinking coffee, revelling in the sunshine.

Today's been a pretty lazy day. Matthias unfortunately had work to do, so holed up in our study to get it done, and I've just been doing a lot of reading. I finished off Sunvault, an anthology of solarpunk science fiction short stories, poetry and art, and read every one of the Booksmugglers' recent Gods and Monsters series of short stories. These are all free online, and I would definitely recommend them!

Once Matthias has finished his work, I'm hoping the two of us can go for a run, and then settle in for a lazy evening, winding down before the work week starts up again.
dolorosa_12: by ginnystar on lj (robin marian)
I'm determinedly ignoring British politics this weekend, which has meant that I've been able to spend the past day and a half in ignorant, productive, relaxing bliss. I know that I'm eventually going to cave and open up Twitter or the Guardian's politics livefeed, but I've been able to resist the temptation so far.

Matthias and I spent Saturday sorting out a few remaining wedding-related tasks. As a result, he now has a suit to wear on the day, and we have ordered our wedding rings, which is super exciting! There are only five weeks to go before the wedding, and the planning has gone fairly smoothly up to this point. It helped that we were almost the last couple in our circle of friends to get married, so we benefitted from the advice and experience of many other married couples. Other than paying for stuff (which will happen incrementally over the next few weeks), and sorting out a playlist to play after the reception, we're pretty much done, which is a huge relief.

After the wedding errands, the two of us met up with [tumblr.com profile] ienthuse, her husband, [tumblr.com profile] jimtheviking and [twitter.com profile] BeccaMerkelbach in one of our favourite Cambridge pubs. It was a beautiful, warm afternoon, and we sat drinking gin or beer in the shaded, tree-filled beer garden, and generally had a wonderful time.

I'm planning a fairly lazy afternoon — I finally bought the ebook of A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers (the sequel to her excellent The Long Way to a Small and Angry Planet, which I loved), and am intending to spend the afernoon sitting out in the courtyard and reading it. It looks as if summer has finally arrived (although I realise that's probably an overly optimistic thing to say in the UK), so I might as well make the most of it!
dolorosa_12: (emily hanna)
This has been a lovely, relaxing weekend. I spent Saturday morning Skyping with my mum, and finishing off an exchange fic assignment that had been hanging over my head and worrying me. In the afternoon, I met up with a friend for coffee. We'd originally planned to hang out in one of the parks by the river, but I'd looked at the weather on Friday and feared it might rain. In any event, the promised rain never came, so we followed the coffee with a walk along the river, talking books, life, and libraries (she is also a librarian, although she works in public libraries rather than academic libraries like me). She had generously lent me her copy of The Raven King, and it was nice to be able to discuss that book - and the whole Raven Cycle series - with someone else, as I'd read it so much later than everyone that I'd missed most of the conversation on Tumblr and elsewhere online. (If anyone else wants to discuss it in the comments, that would be most welcome!)

I got home in time to potter around the garden for an hour or so, repotting things and digging up the inevitable weeds. Since finishing my PhD, I've had more energy to pay attention to stuff like the garden, the furnishings and decorations in the house and so on, and it's really nice to see all my plants grow, and the garden start to take shape. I'm at the point of being able to eat herbs from my own garden, and that is wonderful.

Today has been even more relaxing - I've spent most of my time reading, either curled up on the couch, or out in the garden. I'm reading my way through the Chrestomanci books, as Diana Wynne Jones was an author who completely passed me by during my childhood, and I've always felt the lack. I've read three of the Chrestomanci books, and have enjoyed them so far, although I think I prefer the Howl trilogy slightly.

Now I'm just pottering around on the internet, and starting to think about dinner. Two days are never quite enough, but at least I've made good use of them.

On another note, the fundraiser for Mia and Cy is still going. We're very close to making the target, and it would be wonderful for them to wake up on Monday and find that the target had been reached. If you want to donate, you can do so here. Please do also keep sharing it widely. If you have any questions, get in touch with me.
dolorosa_12: (sokka)
Today is a public holiday in my part of the world, and I'm absolutely astonished at how productive I've been able to be when I have three days off work instead of two. So far this weekend I have:

  • Cleaned the bathroom

  • Planted lavender, thyme, mint, and rosemary in our garden

  • Gone through all my clothes and thrown out anything that's worn out, filled with holes or otherwise unwearable (I wear my clothes to death - there were some items that were fifteen years old in the latest clear-out, so nothing is ever in a state to donate to charity)

  • Gone through the massive stack of paperwork on my desk in our study, and sorted it all into folders, tidied it away, and thus cleared a working space in an area that has been covered with piles of paper for months on end

  • Cooked an extremely elaborate roast chicken dinner, and made a soup using the chicken bones and leftovers

  • Cleaned the kitchen, including wiping out the inside of drawers and the fridge

  • Done two loads of laundry

  • Written and queued up a book review for a new project one of my friends has started (the review isn't scheduled to post for a few weeks, but I'll link it when it's live)

  • Made plum-infused vodka


  • In other words, why can't all weekends be three days long?

    Last week, Matthias and I went to the Norfolk coast with four friends. The place we were staying was in between Cromer and Sheringham, and although we were expecting pretty miserable weather, it was super warm and we were even able to hang out on the beach for a morning.

    Photos behind the cut )

    All in all, the last week has been pretty great.

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    rushes into my heart and my skull

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