So Much to Catch Up On…

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Yes, I know.  I’ve been a bad, bad blogger once again, as I haven’t posted since the beginning of June.

It’s just been a bit of a busy period lately.. I’ve been away on holidays again TWICE, celebrated Pride in London, dealt with an exhausting situation at work, trying to study for my PRINCE2 certification, and just generally been trying to enjoy the summer as it comes.

Early June saw me return to Madrid for another long weekend, and I got to see so much more of the city that I missed last time.  Yes, it was still disappointing that my ‘friend’ there forgot that I was coming causing me to get a last minute hotel room.. but it definitely allowed me my freedom for the weekend.

The week before that trip there was a big change at work – my colleague was asked to help in another office for a week or two as cover, as that part of the department was moving locations and a couple people quit instead of moving.

Meaning I was going to be working alone during that time..

This supposed temporary cover quickly became permanent as she liked it and chose to transfer, which wasn’t much of a surprise as they’re much busier than we are.  What was a surprise is how the bosses decided that I’d be able to do it all myself as we’re ‘not busy enough for two people’, even though we’ve told them it’s too much for one person.

Most nights I was coming home mentally exhausted and would crash as soon as I got in the door.  This means that I haven’t done a lot of studying for my course, even though my bosses have said they’d add to my recent raise once I’ve finished the first part of it.  I’m trying.. but it hasn’t been easy.

So now it’s about two months later and I’m still working alone.. and on my most recent week off, they didn’t even bother to have someone cover for me so I returned to work last Monday to a massive load of work.  It was a rough week, but I think I’m almost caught up now.

Speaking of.. I had to use up the last of my holidays before they reset end of July, so decided last minute to spend a couple nights in Barcelona and then the rest of the week in the beautiful Sitges.  This allowed me to have both a city and a beach break at the same time.

Barcelona was just absolutely stunning!!  I’d never been there before, so was looking forward to exploring the city and doing one of the bus tours as I technically only had one full day there.  On my way to the buses, I got cruised by this very handsome Spanish daddy-bear, who looked so much like a friend back in London that it gave me a shock.

Obviously I just had to delay my planned bus tour.  Hehehe

After that very lovely distraction, I finally got to the touristy stuff and saw a lot of the city from the open-top tour bus.  There’s so much to see there that I clearly need to return for another visit, as I didn’t really get to explore much (only had so much time on the bus).

For the rest of the week, I went just south of Barcelona to the seaside village of Sitges, which is known for it’s gay scene around the world (think the Spanish Provincetown), and has a massive bear week every September which friends keep raving about.

It was such a lovely place to wander around, enjoy the sea and the sand, and the place itself just had such an amazing laid-back vibe that I can’t wait to return.  The naturist beach was phenomenal and so inclusive.  And the sea was so amazing that I didn’t want to get out of it, especially on my last day.  Hahaha

Oh and it definitely helped that I ran into a few people I knew from London there.  And that handsome distraction from Barcelona?  He actually lives in Sitges, so we got to see each other several times whilst there.. mostly when his boyfriend was at work.  Ooopsy!! LOL

So other that all that, we had London Pride (meh..), a very grey and chilly July, and my landlord was here most of June (double meh..).

Oh, and it was my birthday end of June. Other than meeting a lovely friend for dinner and drinks of the day itself (a Thursday), I didn’t do much else to celebrate my day.  I’d taken a nice long weekend for it, but didn’t really leave the house during it.  I just didn’t feel like doing much, especially as I barely heard from anyone during that time (other than the usual Facebook birthday greetings).

But oh well.. that’s in the past, and I have to say I’ve been having a very lovely summer, and am amazed at how much travelling I’ve done this year so far (4 trips already.. all to Spain funny enough lol).

We’ll have to see what the rest of the year brings and how things go at work.

And hopefully even more amazing holidays. 😀

Why Pride Ruins My Birthday

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Unlike most people (I’m guessing), I don’t generally get that excited when it comes to my birthday.  At least not anymore after many years (a lifetime?) of disappointment when I’ve tried to do something special to celebrate.

39th-birthday-cheaters-250And of course as we move through Gay Pride month (June, for those who are unaware) and get closer to my birthday, the feeling of ambivalence and that there’s no point in planning anything gets stronger and stronger.

You see, this year my birthday is the day after London Pride.. and generally falls on or around the same weekend most years.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy going to Pride, but when it overshadows my own birthday, it kind of makes me feel a bit resentful.  Regardless of how proud of my community I am.

A friend of mine said I should use Pride itself as my own birthday party, that I should just enjoy the day as if the parties and such were in celebration of my special day.  Except that doesn’t work because I’ve tried it many times before when Pride and my birthday have coincided.  Firstly because everyone wants to be out partying with their friends and enjoying the crowds, it’s pretty much impossible to organise anything for people to get together.

Secondly, if I were to try and get some people together on the Sunday (my actual birthday), I already know most people would be complaining about how broke they were from Pride, or how hung over they were.. or both.  Or already had other plans (had to remind a friend what day Sunday was after he said he was planning a quiet day with his boyfriend.. after he’d asked me several weeks ago what I was planning for the day).

sad birthdayBut I also wonder if maybe this is just me being pessimist about my ‘friends’ ability to do something together for me.  Mostly after the last time I tried to organise something, just some cheap drinks at a pub in Vauxhall on a Monday.. and the only two people out of those invited who agreed to show up were my flatmate and his best mate.  So I cancelled the event in a huff, and fucked off to the South Bank with a couple I used to hang out with from time to time.

Since then, with the exception of last year, I’ve usually spent the weekend with my best mate from Scotland whose birthday is 2 days before mine, usually with us spending the weekend down in Brighton (we went again this year, but the weekend before due to it being the Brighton Bear Weekender.. sun, fun, booze, and bears LOL).

Last year, as I wrote in my post ‘I’m 40?!? WTF!!!‘, I ended up sort-of celebrating my birthday (which did fall on Pride day itself) out in Essex, helping pour drinks for my mate’s neighbour’s birthday party.  Despite it being a big milestone birthday for me, I kept somewhat in the background as the woman celebrated her 60th, and barely did anything special for myself.

Screw the t-shirt.. can I have the man inside for my birthday??

Screw the t-shirt.. can I have the man inside for my birthday??

To be honest, I’ve never really had much luck when it comes to celebrating my birthday, as something else usually takes precedence, like Pride.  Even if it makes me feel like I’m allowing Pride to take precedence over my own personal celebrations.

But it goes back further than that.  Throughout the years I’ve never had much luck organising anything for my birthday, with most people coming up with excuses why they couldn’t come celebrate – I almost snapped years ago when a co-worker actually had the cheek to say I should push back my birthday for a week or so after the next payday.

Umm.. no.

It was bad enough as a kid when my parents used to occasionally hold off celebrating my birthday until the middle of July when it was my younger sister’s birthday, and they’d get us a cake together.. which was usually a girl’s cake.  😦  It just left me with a feeling that my birthday wasn’t as important to them for some reason (I’m sure there was more behind it, like finances or something).

So anyway, now I try not to make a big deal about my birthday because I don’t want to feel disappointed that it wasn’t as fun or exciting as I’d like it to be.  And the last thing I want is to feel the sting when someone I’d love to spend time with on my day gives a lame excuse why they can’t.

The plan for the moment is to meet my old flatmate and possibly another mate or two to watch the parade, then into Soho for a couple drinks.. after that, nothing planned.  Might go to the big picnic in the park in Vauxhall on the Sunday, but we’ll see.

*Sigh* I’ll let you know how the weekend turns out…

Happy Pride Weekend everyone!

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LGBT Blogs UK Top 10 | Cision

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pride-flag-flying-emotionWell I came home from holidays to a very nice surprise, one that I definitely wasn’t expecting – I’ve been listed in the LGBT Blogs UK Top 10 list on a website called Cision just in time for Pride this weekend in London.

Now personally, I’ve never heard of this website/company, but from what I’ve been reading it’s a media/PR company that helps other companies/freelancers/media outlets improve their online branding and market reach.  They basically offer global communications software and services.

Well, regardless of who they are and why they’ve chosen my wee little blog, I’m very grateful to be considered and included in their list.  Some of the blogs listed I’ve heard of before or actually follow myself already.

Here’s Cision’s full list:Pride-London

  1. Pink Wedding Days
  2. Fagburn
  3. Disco Damaged
  4. That Gay Backpacker
  5. The Gay Agenda
  6. Gay Banker
  7. Nottelevision
  8. Ramblings of a Supposed Disease Free Mind
  9. homotopia
  10. Gay Sikh

Please feel free to check out the above blogs (I know I will be).

Also, I want to give all of you who continue to visit my blog, comment, like, share, and so forth a great big THANK YOU.  If it wasn’t for all of you, I would have given up on this blog a long time ago and wouldn’t have kept writing.

Anyway.. click below for the full listing and Cision’s other Top 10 lists.  And stay tuned for a recount of my recent trip to the coast for the Brighton Bear Weekender.. and a post about how Pride always clashes with my birthday. 😉

LGBT Blogs UK Top 10 | Cision.