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Friday 26 October 2012


The other weekend I was staying with friends and went to my first Tai Chi class. Sorry to say I was not impressed, but didn't know any better.

Wednesday this week, I caught a later train and went to Manchester with B. It was the Playhouse Theatre which is just over the road from Oxford Road station. Good as it meant less travelling.
Our first disappointment was when we found our usual restaurant had 'closed until further notice'. So we had to find somewhere else. The pub meal was okay but they only did a limited menu.
On our theatre trips we like to end lunch with coffee and something 'naughty' such as cheesecake. Off we went and after queuing, we had coffee and lemon cheesecake (B) and I had chai latte and strawberry cheesecake.
Then on to the theatre.

Forty-second street - lovely costumes, cheerful music and very energetic, skilled dancers. The down-side was the theatre itself. Apparently it had been refurbished, but the seating remains cramped, grab rails too shiny and slippery. Getting to our seats was bad enough, sitting there for 2.5 hours? was a nightmare. Talk about having painfully stiff joints! 

The good news was we had a lovely chat and I said I might go to the Tai-Chi class with B. Hence this morning's efforts. I have to say it was thoroughly enjoyable, greater numbers than the other one and friendlier people. For a small remuneration we had an hour's tuition and either tea of coffee. Then I was invited to join them on their next outing, but unfortunately not convenient but there'll be others.

So next Friday morning? Back to Tai Chi.

Sunday 7 October 2012

That'll teach me!

not to plan too far ahead, and not to blog about it.
Just learnt the due to lack of takers, the Curry Night has been cancelled.

Saturday 6 October 2012

Taking a leaf

from an online friend's blog...Thanks, Joy
I've had a go at making my own version of Roasted Vegetable Soup.

Having read her posts about making soup and finding I had some it would be better if I used these up vegetables, I had a go.

The vegetable rack had a butternut squash, some courgettes and onions and I'd just bought some peppers.
Into the halogen oven went sliced vegetables for roasting. Courgettes sliced length-ways, similarly butternut squash with seeds removed and sliced deseeded peppers (red).

A lovely mouth-watering aroma came from the cooked vegetables.

Roasted and roughly chopped they went in to the soup pan with water and chopped onions. Yes, the onions ought to have been roasted but this was an 'if it occurs to you - add it' concoction.

Simmered and condiments added, cooled and whizzed to make a smother texture then left over night for flavours to develop.
Today, I decided the smoked paprika would make an excellent addition to the flavouring, so in some went.

Now, all that's left is to heat through thoroughly and serve...

Friday 5 October 2012


Yesterday's epistle fell with a silent thud into the least I feel better for having put my thoughts down for 'posterity'.

I have something different to look forward to next week. 

Lovely folk in Rishton are holding a fund-raising event in aid of the East Lancs. Hospice. 
I've been with my friends to that restaurant several times and the food is scrummy. I could not resist the opportunity to meet up with my friends, go to the restaurant, hopefully have an evening of fun and laughter whilst raising funds for charity.

Thursday 4 October 2012

New term - new course

Studies with the OU continue apace thanks to transitional arrangements. Having been a student under the original fees regime, I do not have to pay the grossly inflated prices forced on others.
I love studying, it keeps the old grey cells from degenerating with aging. 
Previously, I did SD226 Biological Psychology. Okay, so afterwards I vowed 'never again'. But, time marches on an experiences fade, and the OU develop new attractive courses whose descriptions whet the appetite for study.
So, here I am at the commencement of SDK228 - 
The Science of the Mind - Investigating Mental Health.
The first eTMA (electronic Tutor Marked Assignment) is due to be submitted online no later than noon on 29th November. 
Biopsychosociology - or looking at how biology, psychology and sociology play a part in mental health.

Reading blogs by by online friends, I've noticed that some seem to be coming down regularly with aches and pains, a sense of being 'under the weather' often accompanied by sore throat, sniffles and the like.

With my learning hat on my mind began to wonder about my online friends and their recurring 'not very well' postings.
Because in recent study using readings, audio and video I've been looking at 'depression', 
stress and how flu-like symptoms can be linked to biology, psychology and sociology (somatisation).

People can think they have flu-like symptoms and lay the blame on increased contact with people of all ages. It's tempting to think that the symptoms have arisen through being at work. They can, and do, but Not because of the germ 'soup' of the working environment. Rather the imposition of yet more and more 'must do', must be 'seen to do' tasks. Onerous, time-consuming and seemingly never-ending. Add on extra layers such as observation, assessment, time constraints as well as simply doing the job...?

Those recurring bouts of flu-like 'virus', headaches, sore throats are the body and brain attempting to tell the person 'enough'! Be more kind to yourself.
Learn how to say 'Yes, But...' instead of acquiescence when someone tasks you with yet more burdens on your 'willing' shoulders.    
Refrain from taking on more and more 'must do this', 'must do'...
Your well-being, is under threat - the longer and greater stresses become...