There's a reason I'm not a poet

Posts tagged ‘birfdays’

Michaelday XXVI

My birthday was last week. I think. I was on nights this weekend so I’ve no concept of which way is up never mind what day it is. But the birthday was fun! As is my way, I had three birthdays: first was in work with pizza and cookies (I do actually do work I promise), the second was Eurovision party on the Saturday, and then the actual birthday itself on the Monday. Went out for drinks and lunch with the family and in the evening saw Derren Brown!

The man made us promise not to put spoilers on social media but needless to say the guy got up in front of everyone and performed blatant witchcraft. People of a delicate or religious constitution need not apply. I spent my time trying to work out exactly how he manipulates people. After communication skills training at uni, my knowledge of non-verbal communication and cues etc. has made me more aware of how these things work , but this was a complete other level. Like Super Slytherin times seventeen. It was interesting when he looked at people and assessed (or at least pretended to) how easy or hard it would be to manipulate them, but he was pulling off ridiculously complicated stunts that it can’t be anything remotely simple. So eventually I decided it was actual shamanic ju-ju.

Eurovision was also brilliant craic! I went out shopping beforehand to try and get a bunting of different flags but couldn’t find anything. This being Northern Ireland, the closest thing J could get was a bunch of red white and blue flags. Which is fine, I passed them off as France. My housemate had the national flag of the gays though so we had a nice relevant rainbow sitting above our fireplace in honour of Eurovision.

We’d crafted a bunch of drinking rules to make the event go by smoothly (or not smoothly) and they ended up being bloody well brutal. By the end of the night I’d lost my voice from shouting DRINK every time lasers or a granny came on screen. I’d dressed up in my Lederhosen so it probably didn’t make a very imposing sight. But the night wdnt on until about four in the morning so it was a success anyway. And more importantly I had fun.

As a birthday present, I got some money together from the fam and myself and bought a DSLR camera! It arrived the other day amd I’ve been playing about with it today. The aim is to be able to take semi-decent photos by the time I get to China so I can come back and not only be annoying talking about what a wonderful time I had and how much of a voyage of self discovery it was, but also be annoying and upload 732 photos in sepia onto facebook and make people sit down and watch my PowerPoint show.

Don’t go thinking you’re safe.

M

My Scheduled Programming

Been a while since my last post. Part of that is from slogging away! Just finished my first month in oncology- it’s all a bit heartbreaking at times but I think overall I’ll enjoy the job as the speciality attracts some really lovely people and every day is interesting. I’m enjoying getting to know the patients and some of the actual medicine is fascinating.

I’ve also been at the old graft in the form of an exam on Tuesday just past. MRCP Part 1, one of the stepping stones if you want to go down the route of General Medicine. It’s a tough exam, one that asks a lot of really detailed questions (at times needless/esoteric level of detail) so understandably it was a really crap exam. But sure it’s done! And now I can have a life again! Gonna get to planning China in the next couple of weeks.

On that note it’s my birthday next week (eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee) and we’re gonna go see Derren Brown! I’m also going out for lunch with the parental units and this Saturday we’re having some people round for a party. The main reason for the party is the glorious tradition that is Eurovision! Gonna dress up in traditional Lithuanian sequins and get plastered. It’ll be class.

Now bed though. Tomorrow is more work.

M

Playing Catch Up

I’ve been on nights the past few weeks, and off this week- hence not many blog posts coming this way. But I’m finally having a lazy day and so am working my way through my to-do list.

Unsurprisingly, my week off has been a welcome change! Was down seeing the Mourne mountains on Wednesday for a trek around Bloody Bridge and saw some fantastic scenery. Spent the next two days in a fair bit of leg pain so obviously did something wrong along the way mind you. I’d never actually been round the Mournes before, despite my housemate constantly singing their praises, but some of the views were fantastic, and again there were those wee brown signs labelling them as an “Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty”. Well-deserved.

Headed to London on Thursday, as it was The Wife’s birthday on Friday, and she was having us all out for a karaoke night! Being the reserved and shy wallflower that I am I obviously wasn’t very excited about this event. At all. And obviously it came as a complete surprise to myself and all my friends when I lost my voice after about half an hour from all the high-volume “singing” I was doing. Initially when my friend told me she had booked the room for five hours, I thought “Isn’t five hours a bit long for karaoke?”

Rest assured I soon saw the error of my ways.

Hey, I’m just proud I managed to resist showing up with a cape or something ridiculous.

The night was brilliant fun, and I managed to get chatting to people for decent lengths of time in between renditions of Marvin Gaye and Maroon 5. The Wife seemed to enjoy her night too, and was much more composed with her singing. She took a tactical approach, avoiding the unexpected high notes I fell victim to by sticking to 90s boy bands and Emma Bunting, or as she labelled them “people who can’t actually really sing”.

Unfortunately I had to head off the next morning, and so didn’t get to stick around to see people on the Sunday, when another meet-up was planned to celebrate the engagement do of Yum and Miss Swoon, two of my friends from uni. It’s a bit of a shame that I booked my flights so far in advance and made Halloween plans, as obviously it’s a bit of a big deal. But that’s life living on another island, and sure I’ll be at the wedding come hell/high water/foot splinters.

It was a bit of a quick turnaround when I got back to NI- grabbed some food in a bus in a car park (happiest people in the world, highly recommended) and got a few things sorted for our Halloween party! I’ll post some photos shortly but rest assured there were plenty of creepy things in sight. We had hands floating in punch, giant spiders crawling up the walls, the token dead baby, a popcorn brain and a prize for the sexiest costume. Naturally this went to the priest. Not a bad housewarming! I decided to go as Professor Plum from Cluedo, and was fairly happy with my waistcoat and candlestick as things that are totally reusable for everyday life. Just need to wipe off some of the fake blood and you’ve got yourself a lovely Christmas centrepiece.

Last development in my life is Josh Ritter’s new album which is an absolute cracker. It’s got some of his classic bootslapper songs as well as some others like the brilliant Homecoming, which is filled with such yearning and eagerness. So yes give it a listen and bring yourself some joy.

I’m off to go tick off my next box. Only one more month of A&E before I get my life back..!

M

Jack of All Trades, Master of Arts

It’s a fact universally acknowledged that all people who have had three graduations will be in want of a fourth.

So, I headed back last Friday to the old Alma Mater with my parents to pick up a free degree. After six years in the place, I’ve got a BA as well as my medical degree, but all undergrads who’ve studied there become eligible to have their Bachelor of Arts converted into a Master of Arts degree. Without any extra work being required! All you have to do is remain an upstanding member of society, ie avoid getting

  1. Bankrupt
  2. Thrown in jail
  3. Divorced

Yeah.

We flew over and I picked up my stuff for graduation, and immediately started running into a huge number of familiar faces, setting up the theme for the weekend. It was pretty great seeing so many people again, as practically the whole year was back at the same time. There was maybe 100-150 people from my year in college, so there was a whole bunch of people I’d lost contact with who it was great fun catching up with. People are doing Real Life Things like moving to exciting locations, buying property, heck one guy even brought his daughter along.

Of course, with a year group that big, there have to be people that you weren’t best buds with, that you at best exchanged awkward hellos with when you came across them in the street. Aaaaaand that was another part of the weekend: there was a hefty number of times accidentally getting caught chatting to someone while walking towards one of your actual friends/alcohol. It was flipping hilarious watching people go through this, and deliciously painful when it happened to me.

Graduation was preceded by a dinner the night before, which again was a great hark back to old times. Food, wine and port was served, we got screwed over by seating mayhem, and the serving staff told us off for being too noisy. The ceremony itself involved a lot of standing, a lot of waiting, and a lot of Latin. All the pomp and fuss is quite fun, but by the time I went up to the front I was a bit keen to get out pf there into the sun! We had lunch in college and hung around on the grass chatting- we ended up being the very last to leave out of the 300 or so people there, as one of my friends was taking 595 photos. Yup.

That night we headed out for dinner to a South American tapas place for my birthday. It ended up being a bit of a logistic nightmare, what with sixteen people ordering off three different menus and sharing 2 for 1 cocktails, but the food was class and the craic was 90, and the sitting down meant I had a bit more time to chat to one or two people I hadn’t really managed to yet.

We ended the night with a walk around college at dusk, reminiscing and stirring up nostalgia. With a sit on the fountain I said goodbye to college life. For the first time I don’t know when I’ll next be back in Cambridge, which is strange. I had a flipping great six years there, but that’s all over, and Cambridge is now just a place I used to live.

M