There's a reason I'm not a poet

Posts tagged ‘how big how blue how beautiful’

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

Island Getaway

It’s my birthday this Saturday (woooo!) and I’m going to be over in England for my last in a long line of graduations. I’ve taken this week off (another woooo!) and decided to head out to Rathlin Island last weekend with a few friends, partly to see the place and partly to celebrate my birthday.

I’ve seen the island from afar quite a large number of times from the north coast, but as far as I can remember I’ve never actually been there. It’s quite a small island, about 6 miles long with around 100 people on it. We got the ferry over, working on our quads against the rocking of the boat, and made our way to a hostel a few minutes walk from the harbour. We got a bit sidetracked along the way when we found an OUTDOOR GYM, getting a bit excited as it was essentially a playground.

We went for a walk around the island before heading to the pub for some grub and some drinks. Inevitably this turned into a bit of a boogie. There were only around twenty people in the bar, and most of them all knew each other of course, but the atmosphere was so friendly and welcoming that it meant for some brilliant craic. We hogged the jukebox a little bit and had a boogie, and a bunch of the locals joined in. The electricity wasn’t working in half of the bar so it was just like being in a dark nightclub in the real world.

We ended up staying out quite late, dancing/chatting/eating birthday cake/getting offered jeeps until the early hours of the morning, and it had been a while since I’d had a drunken boogieing night out with my friends, so I was in a pretty great mood by the end of it and well tuckered out. We slept in a fair bit the next day to work off the alcohol, so missed the morning, but then headed out, got one of the world’s best sausage rolls, and then went for a trek up round the island.

The weather wasn’t too kind to us over the weekend: there was a fair amount of rain, and an awful lot of wind. This meant we didn’t really get to do the whole cycling/puffin-watching set of activities I had mentally planned in my head, but the scenery on the island was still pretty great. I don’t tend to do too many outdoorsy-type stuff, but when I do I appreciate how much of it Northern Ireland has to offer.

So yeah, bit of a short trip but really enjoyed myself. I’ll definitely go back some day, if for nothing else to finally see those puffins!

M

Peachy with a side of keen

Life is going quite nicely at the minute. I’ve been on surgery for just over two months now and I’ve been really enjoying my job. Unlike my placement in medicine, it’s essentially what I was expecting my job to be like this year: I’m going on ward rounds, reviewing sick patients, and going around with my clipboard running the show (read: frantically trying to stay afloat). The surgical doctors are all really friendly, with a great atmosphere of camaraderie, and as a general rule the surgical nurses are flipping fantastic.

Compared to other hospitals in surgical wards in NI, I’ve been told that the ratio of FY1s to patients is the lowest in the region. I’m not sure how true that is, but there are days when things are extremely busy and so you end up leaving quite a bit later than you’re meant to. But inevitably that’s a part of the job that I was expecting- and I’d rather get things sorted and finished, doing a good job essentially, rather than managing to leave an hour or two earlier each day. I suppose it’s nice that I’m in a job where motivation to work hard is easy to come by, and it’s a good feeling to be both doing a good job and doing good.

Another advantage of being on surgery is that due to the slightly longer shifts, we get more scheduled days off than in medicine. Add in some booked days of annual leave, and it’s meant I’ve actually been able to get a fair amount of time away from the hospital! So despite enjoying my work, I’ve had the past week off and it’s been glorious. I’ve had a bunch of lazy days where I haven’t done very much, but I’ve also done some Organised Social Gatherings. My housemates and I had a party last Saturday which went well apart from the standard end-of-night-too-much-to-drink drama, I made a cake for the new series of Game of Thrones, and then a few days ago three of us went up to the North Coast.

We went for a fair few treks around the area of Ballycastle, in places I’d not been to before but one of my friends knew. The weather was beautiful with no clouds in the sky, meaning that because we were right beside the sea the views were truly stunning. #suchblue. After a walk through some swampy ground we ended up at one point on the top of giant craggy cliffs, with huge sheer drops down to the ocean, and man the place was just incredible. NI’s coast is labelled as an area of outstanding beauty, and the place really showed me how true that is- on a day with nice weather Northern Ireland really is just as great a place to be as anywhere else in the world. Happy to be here!

Another place we went to was Kinbane Head, a narrow outcrop of limestone where a castle was built in the sixteenth century, although has since been destroyed presumably due to time and the ocean, so it’s just ruins now. This photoshopped photo makes it look pretty class, but without the CGI it was a very impressive location. Again sitting out in the glorious sunshine lying in grass with the blue ocean and seabirds beneath you was one heck of a relaxing moment.

So yeah- lovin lyf 2k15 at the minute.

M