Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Keeping it real for 26.2

I'm smiling because it's over. Yes, as promised about four months ago yesterday I ran the Adidas Dublin Marathon - all 26.2 miles of it! I have to say that I found it pretty tough and definitely missed Stu my usual running buddy. As he injured his calf a while back he kindly criss-crossed Dublin for the day as my support team and own personal cheering section. On the bright side the weather was great, the route was lovely (just long - did I mention that?) and the Dubliners were out in droves all along the way to cheer on the 11,000 participants. My favourite part was running through Pheonix Park which is fairly early on in the race. Today I am stiff from head to toe but feeling slightly better after a visit to the hot tub at our gym. The next stop is the couch for a well-deserved dvd watching marathon!

The rest of the weekend was also fairly jam packed and I'd be remiss not to hit the highlights - On Friday evening we went to the Iron and Wine gig as part of the Belfast Festival. As you would expect it was a great concert and Stu and I were also pleasantly surprised by the support act Johnny Flynn and the Sussex Wit - very good folky tunes. On Saturday morning we met Stu's family (including nephew Dan pictured with Stu) at St George's Market to celebrate Stu's 31st birthday a day early and later on Saturday evening we had a few friends over for dinner as well which was lovely. Then on sunny Sunday morning we journeyed to Dublin where we met up with our friend Dave for some Wagamama. All good.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Keep on blogging in the free world . . .

I've got a couple of flicks to highly recommend. On Saturday night we watched Tell No One which was excellent, edge of your seat stuff. Then on Sunday night we watched The Painted Veil (oh how I love Edward Norton) . . . let's just say there were tears. I don't want to say much about either of these two very different but both atmospheric movies. See for yourself.

I am just in the door this evening from my French night class. Every Tuesday night when I get home after a long day of work and class I look very forward to having a glass of wine and a late dinner. I really enjoy my class (this is my second year of the DELF course) although each week I also think I really should do more homework but nothing much ever really comes of that!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

What's new in my world

So much to blog about and so little time! The 21st century dilemma . . . I shall start with a quick run down of our busy weekend in London. Stuart goes often for work but his meetings very rarely fall on a Friday so on this occasion I did my scheming utmost to make a little getaway of it! We stayed with our friend Duncan which was lovely and also got to hook up with Big Chris - always a pleasure. Our flexible itinerary involved walking around, drinking coffee and going to a few specialty shops (okay, that bit was of my choosing!) I got gorgeous black boots and we also visited the Orla Kiely flagship store in Covent Garden (a highlight for Dunc and Stu I'm sure) which gave me the opportunity to fall in love with a bag that costs a month's rent. All in all we had a lovely time.

After work on Monday night the long awaited, much anticipated The Big Knit was a smashing success. Six of us came together for a night of knitting and great craic (as they'd say here!) We stitched some very funky wee smoothie hats, I must say. Believe it or not this was the first sort of 'knitting circle' that I've ever had the pleasure of attending and I had a really lovely time - my friend Alice and I are thinking of re-convening for another knitting evening in about a month's time. The coffee shop Common Grounds was the perfect venue as there was much randomness afoot with a few other groups meeting so we felt like we fit in well there! More pics will be forthcoming . . .

Speaking of both London and knitting, I purchased a beautiful new pattern book during my travels - Debbie Bliss Donegal Tweed has several gorgeous chunky sweaters (including a lovely one for men so maybe Stu will finally profit from my wool obsession.) As a woman with still one sleeve remaining on Thermal (yes, I got slightly sidetracked by mini hats for a while there) I am also liking the thought of doing a project on bigger needles! I'm dreaming of doing Kilrean at the moment . . . any colour suggestions?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Rufus World

It's been a good week - We went to see Rufus Wainwright on Tuesday night in Belfast. I don't think my description of the evening will do it justice. What a fantastic night! He had a seven piece band and his voice is just absolutely perfect. He played lots of grand piano, guitar and also just sang - he's got very cool moves, some of which are just a little bit Las Vegas (in a good way.) The planned support act didn't happen so the lovely Rufus played for two and a half hours with just a little break. Wonderful! Concert outfits included a white glittery leisure suit and after the break he emerged in lederhosen (pictured above.) For the encore he came out wearing black stilletos etc and his band joined him as backup dancers. I can't describe it without making it sound weird, but believe me, it was cool . . . .

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

It's Thanksgiving weekend in Canada - at the risk of sounding too melancholy I have to say that my perpetual habit of missing special occasions at home is really getting a bit old. On the bright side, Stu's mom and dad very kindly hosted an Irish-Canadian celebration with a lovely dinner complete with pumpkin pie. Now as it grows later on Sunday night I find myself wishing that the theme would continue for a wee while longer as tomorrow's a holiday at home and I could use a bit of that . . .

Carrying on with the Thanksgiving theme, I found myself thinking of the film What's Cooking today - from Gurinder Chadha (Bend it Like Beckham director) the movie is set on Thanksgiving (American that is) and cleverly profiles the experiences of four families from different cultural backgrounds in Los Angeles. It's been ages since we watched it, but I remember really enjoying it.

Life's been busy and good - a sometimes hectic but mostly satisfying mix of work, friends, running (I am officially registered for Dublin so there's no backing out now!) and other adventures . . . There hasn't been much time for TV in the mix but tonight I was delighted to watch the new season premier of Ugly Betty (oh, how I missed her and I'm not even ashamed to admit it . . .) and then we watched Louis Theroux's Under the Knife which featured one of my favourite Brits investigating the phenomenon of plastic surgery in America. He has a knack for finding the strangest people and I love his unobtrusive manner of questioning which only serves to highlight the madness. Good stuff.