Tuesday, 19 May 2009


After 6 months, I finally decided to get my fourth tattoo. This time I got a Japanese cherry blossom as a band around my ankle. There are differences between the Chine version and the Japanese version. The Japanese one holds more significance for me and my life, but a lot of people don't realise the significance, and to be honest a lot of girls just like them. :) If you want to know the difference, here it is.

The first one I got was when I was 15, and it was done in one of the bouncers kitchen from a nightclub I used to attend when I was *cough*underage*cough*. It helped tremendously that I developed at an early age. ;) The tattoo I got admittedly was the most impulsive thing i have done as a teenager... sort of. The tattoo was of Charlie Brown with the words saying "Good Grief!" Whatever possessed me, I have no idea, and it is the only tattoo I regret, but I did get an offer to pose for a nudy mag at the time.. but I was a lot slimmer in those days. Needless to say I declined as I was only 16 at the time.

The other one I got when I was 22 and is a Chinese symbol on my hip. I eventually told my mom at age 25 that I had two tats and she promptly told me to wash them off... you gotta love her for that. Believe me it took lots of convincing to tell her they were real.

The third one I got is my most beloved tattoo, I had it done 2 years ago a couple of years after my Dad died of cancer. During my time of looking after him, it was the most stressful and rewarding time of my life. My Dad needed me, he was scared and vulnerable, as was I at losing him. During that time as you know my mom was in intensive care at Walton neurology, and there were times I just thought I cannot do this anymore. But the perseverance was well worth it, as was the 2 and a half hour sitting getting it done on my back! It was how I felt and still sometimes feel even years later, and I adore it. The tattoo was done at Triballife tattoo (now called Memento moiri, based in Liverpool, and he was a great artist and conversationalist. To be honest I thought it was going to be excruciating, but really it was a walk in the park. Maybe because of the meaning behind it? The aftercare of my tattoo went so smoothly, no scabbing, scarring. I took good care of it, and still to this day I adore it, and have no regrets.

During the last 6 months, I thought about getting the cherry blossom tattoo and the artwork and the placement is fantastic. However, my god I never understood how painful it would be afterwoods. My ankle has swelled to twice the normal size, it is a bit inflammed and hot. I have been cleansing it as instructed, and now have it elevated. But oh my goodness, even walking is agony. Hopefully it will settle down in a few days.

Here's some links on aftercare if you decide to get a tattoo done.


As soon as the swelling is settled i'll add some pics. :)

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Natural Photography

I'm trying to get into my new hobby, photography using the Nikon D5o. Still not quite sure how to use it, but i'm trying out different styles.

As I mentioned before, i'm trying to cheer my mom up, so have been waiting for a nice sunny day to mow the lawn and take some pics of the garden. Next week i've plans to get them blown up to poster size so that I can put them on her ceiling, and something else to look at apart from artex! I've also arranged for Sky to be put in, even though I bought freeview box for her at Christmas. Hopefully she'll get a better reception. I read an article today, the author must have read my mind about the caring system. Here it is if anyone is interested.

Anyway, I finally mowed the lawn, got up at 6AM to take some pics of the sunlight hitting the trees and I hope she enjoys it. I also nearly blew myself up when I cut right through the mower cable when it was on. Oops! The people at the store said I was very lucky to not get electrocuted. Glad to see i've still got some luck on my side. So whilst at the garden ship, i've been wanting to buy something for the birds. We already have a box for the bluetits that visit the house every day, but haven't really done more than that. So I bough a victorian type of stand along with nuts, seeds, worms and peanuts. Since then i've had an influx of birds of al varieties, which is just what I wanted.

I've seen a red finch, blue tits, lots of pidgeons, a black bird that's stealing moss in a plant pot for it's nest and a few sparrows. I've managed to take a few pics behind the glass doors, some turned out well, others didn't. Judgin by the seed feeder that seems to be the most popular, so i'll have to top that up as soon as possible.

I'm heading off to the house again tomorrow to sort a few things off... yeah had all these plans to get stuff done this week and i'm still procrastinating... so tomorrow!!

Enjoy the pics.

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Caring - An antiquated system

My mom

For the last 5 years, i've had to be involved with medical personel, hospitals, doctors, nurses, social services - the whole kit and kaboodle. After seeing an entry in today's news about an OAP that was killed, it stirred something within me. A fire that's been brewing for a long time.

There has always been disparities within the health system, and nursing care standards, along with the old age post code lottery. For me though my story is probably not disimilar to others out there. My dad was diagnosed with stomach cancer in August 2004, and within 2 months he was dead. During those two months, we had the support of Macmillan nurses, the Queenscourt Hospice in Southport whom were wonderful with dad whilst he was there during his last few weeks. I had support from nurses, doctors, because of the word 'Cancer'. With other people, like my mom who is just 55 years old - a young women whom has Ankyosing Spondylitis, Osteoarthritis, and Osteoporosis, she's unable to feed herself, care for herself and has been bedridden for 3 years, I receive no support. I'm not just talking about monetary support, i'm talking about physical support, emotional support. People's wishes when they're seriously ill and whom are not suffering from cancer appear to be discriminated against. A person with cancer is allowed to die at home and receives such support and services to allow them to fulfill their personal needs. Why then is it so different for people of other illnesses?

My mom is dying slowly, she wants to come home to die, and the only way I can manage to do that is to pay some agency fee of £700 per week, plus the costs of Social services. But because of costs it's too expensive to bring her home, when nursing homes are £500 per week (minimum). So mom has no choice but to stay there against her wishes, against my wishes. Have you ever heard someone cry for years on end because they want to go home? How hard it is to try and say that 'i'm trying'. Working all the hours to try and save that sort of money. For it to be gone within a year. Then what happens after that year when the savings are all gone? They sell their home that they've built their whole life working for.

I know my mom and I aren't the only ones in this position, but too much power is now at the hands of others instead of the needs of the individuals, and it needs to change. Help for carers needs to change. The whole system is so antiqauted that it's no longer fit for purpose. So where do we go from here. How do we stop the discrimination from this point on?

Friday, 8 May 2009

Classical Music - Rondo Veneziano

Ever since I was a child I have been interested in all kinds of music. People who've browsed through my iPod, can't quite figure out which genre I fit into, which is fine with me. I'm pretty much an eclectic when it comes to music. It has to reach me on an emotional level for me to love it. I remember a song from probably going on 20 years ago that I heard and has stuck with me forever. The song was Notturno in Gondola by Rondo Veneziano from the album Venice in Peril. I do have the LP somewhere, but had trouble getting it onto disc. High and low i've searched for this particular song to put on my laptop/iphone/ipod etc. And now i've finally found it.

I'm not quite sure what it is about the composition that I love so much. It's such a haunting piece that just gives me goose pimples.

As I sit here trying to relax (thanks to some hefty meds from the doctors), I get a sense as I close my eyes that i'm wandering in a meadow of yellow flowers and at the end of the field is an old shack. As I walk towards it, I see an old gentlemen just sitting on his porch in this brocken down building, only sheltered by some beams of wood overhead. The man is of black origin and aged approximately 80ish originated from the southern states of America. And he sits in solitude, his head bowed in contemplative silence as if waiting for something or someone to find him.

I don't approach him, instead I stop and sit, watching this man from a distance and this music is what I hear, a haunting melody of emotions that emanate from him. His sadness, whomever he is, is lonely and longing for something. Or maybe it's me who is longing for something. Where this has come from, I really have no idea, but if someone can explain it to me, i'd be very grateful. Is it just vivid imagination, or is it something i've seen before? I don't know. I've uploaded the music for you (hopefully it works). All I ask is when you listen to this music, what do you see, what do you hear, what do you feel?

Okay, so the music thing didn't quite work out as i'd planned. So i've put the link to the music at the bottom, don't worry there's no virus's and you don't have to download anything unless you wish, just simply press play on the required file and let me know what you think.

Notturno in Gondola by Rondo Veneziano