July 3rd, 2014

A Surreal Birthday

As previously posted, I went to a birthday party of a pair of 60 year old twins, whose family, friends and work colleges were present.  It was a nice affair, the twins were lovely - but somehow it all felt weird.  I was taking birthday presents to someone else's birthday, I didn't know anyone there, though Hubby did - it was like attending your own wake and that no one could see you.  Plus it was announced that it was mine and one others birthday and total strangers sang "Happy Birthday, dear *mumble...who?* Happy Birthday to you." I went scarlet, but somehow I found it more and more funny.  A memorable day.

We had massive holes in our planning schedule and forgot umpteen items such as coats (it rained in London...a LOT); a Jesus icon statue for my mother-in-law; proper bedding toothpaste and hairdryer.

Hubby: I forgot to pack some vests.....I packed a load of car light bulbs by mistake...

Me: ..... what? Why? How?

Hubby: I was on the way to the bathroom to pack the soap and I picked up the wrong bag.

Me: Well, this is getting surreal...

Hubby: I also got distracted and forgot to pack the soap too...

It was weird to say the least, but I found it funny. After locating the missing foot pump for the inflatable bed, we turned the large fan on - big mistake. even on mach 1, it was lifting the bedding.  I was holding on to the sheets with my fingers and toes to stop lift off, plus the east-facing bedroom gave us retina-scorching sun from about 4.30 every morning. Seriously, I felt I was witnessing the birth of the universe every morning.   The shower didn't work either.  The washer had gone in the tap-to-shower- faucet and I had to jam my hand under the tap so that I had water coming out of the shower head.

Thankfully, I am back home today and have got belated birthday cards and gifts etc. Spending time to recover after the supposed break away :-)

Rube Goldberg Machines



When I was a kid, I used to watch a kid's programme called Vision On, which had a series of photographic clips and artwork.  They made some Rube Goldberg machines; a system of complicated, Heath-Robinson-esque devices to deliver simple tasks, often in a convoluted way.  This used to delight my sister, who attempted to make some of her own.  When my youngest son was growing up and showing an interest in simple mechanics, I found a series of Japanese children's programmes called Pitagora Suichi (Pythagoras Switch in English) and he was fascinated. It helped depict how things happen in a consequential line.  Invaluable for kids, who quite often don't think further than the next step.
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