annanotbob2's Diaryland Diary



Still only four names for the eleven killed in the plane crash two minutes from my house. I'm running on a loop about this. Total, sickening dread that someone I am close to but haven't checked in with will be amongst them -> shame at thinking of myself when there are families missing a member, whose fear is more real, less self-centred neurosis -> remembering that I am up to my neck in grief, I can cut myself some slack -> I'd know by now if someone close was missing, word would have reached me -> but maybe not, so back to the beginning, fear and dread.

I'm not feeling it for the various actions that different groups of people are suggesting, to honour the dead, like when the road opens again (probably Saturday), keeping traffic off for the first hour to allow family and friends to walk over the site of the crash. A minute's silence at 1.30 on the Saturday, a week after the accident. The toll bridge (a knackered historic structure crossing the river between the railway bridge and the A27) is awash with soggy flowers in wilted cellophane as piles of 'tributes' are laid and left in the lashing rain. I recoil from all this, without really knowing why, or caring, for that matter. I don't know what an appropriate response is. Stay indoors with the curtains drawn and shut the fuck up? No, that is harsh. I forget that thousands of local people witnessed this and need to take some action, pay respect. I'll shut up.

Fag break, back in a sec...

It didn't seem worth having a smoke at this time of night without sprinkling a bit of green in, so I may become distracted, or emotional, but I'll try and maintain a bit of fucking decorum (don't you think the phrase 'a bit of decorum' cries out to have the word 'fucking' shoved right into it?).

During this endless rain (there have been floods in other parts of the county), I have taken to smoking in the outside toilet, which makes me feel as if I'm back at school. One of the worst experiences of my life was at age 17, having a smoke in one of the cubicles in the boys' toilets in the sixth form block, and the bell going for break. The door swung open immediately and in crashed a swarm of 17/18 year old boys, thinking there was no danger of being overheard by girls, communicating with each other in a range of styles and registers, urinating and defecating, sometimes with critical commentaries from interested onlookers. I lasted what seemed a life-time, squatting on the toilet seat lid, behind my pal Colin whose fag it had been, before I could take no more and yelled, "You're all disgusting! Yes, I'm in here and I'm coming out now so clear a fucking path to the door!" before marching out with my hands shielding my eyes from any peripheral vision, and on to the common room to shriek about it to my mates.

But back to today, when YD and Husband (I'll try and remember to call him H - I get confused with two sons- and one sister-in-law) picked up the keys to their new home! Massive sighs of relief all round, before back to as we were - not even thinking about it till after Shambala. Today we got the drag outfits sorted - YD found me the perfect dress in a charity shop - stretchy, animal printy, way above the knee, and three sizes too small, so I can get into it, but it clings in a manner that will take some swaggering to carry off given my age and dimensions. Exactly what I wanted. To scare myself over something that doesn't matter - to look ridiculous but also fantastic if I can embrace it fully and brazen the shit out of it.

I ventured into the town centre, which could give Banksy's dismal thing a run for its money, with one arm broken behind its back:

and purchased the cheapest, biggest gilt earrings I could fine, a pair of black fishnet tights and a lovely pair of gold-coloured shoes with a fucking kitten heel (British Heart Foundation, three quid). I tried it all on and it looked quite disappointing, to be honest. But it's the make-up and the wig that make the real transformation and we can't be arsed with practising all that. YD has been concentrating on her Kate Bush outfit today - there's going to be an attempt on the Saturday (at the same time as the minute's silence is being proposed...) to beat the world record for the number of Kate Bush impersonators gathered together in one place, dancing the dance to Wuthering Heights:

Of course, I've only looked at the video now and discovered that behind my back she'd made that film and 17 million people have watched it on youtube, but until now, not me. I'd just heard 'wear a red dress' and thought they meant any old red dress - mine is more maroon to be honest, but it does have a lot of chiffony shite going on and I bought another two metres to make more trailyness, but not quite the same colour, it turned out.

This is the current world record:

This is why we want to go to Shambala - we can cut ourselves off from all this real life and lose ourselves doing physical stuff with loads of other people, most of whom are likely to be laughing. Today has been challenging - the rain was like one of those tropical storms that last for twenty minutes, but all day, with wind; YD and H would love nothing more than to be able to move into their new home right now, but this is Grandson's holiday* that he pleaded with us to go on, and we can't not do it. We've all been looking forward to it, but we've been looking forward to them moving out even more. A positive mindset today was only achieved by plodding on, doing what had to be done, and then suddenly we were into it, because it's a laugh and a project and achievable.

*I know, seeing your granny in drag is not everyone's idea of a treat, but we have made it clear that he can choose whether or not to be with us and we are taking his pal

OK, it's half one and I'm off to bed. Tomorrow we find the camping gear, pack the car and van (we borrowed ED's van so H can take his mobility scooter, from freecycle, brilliant, but the van only seats three, so I'm taking my car too) and do a food shop.

Honestly, look at that picture above and tell me I'm not going camping.

I am grateful for: distraction (it works! I recommend it! Guilt-free!); a time limit on how long they'll be living here; bed; a dry home on a hill; sleep


1:58 a.m. - 26.08.15


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