Welcome to 2019. I’ve not left the country since last year, but I have left the house, so that’s a bonus. Here’s the lowdown on where my January went. Spoiler alert: there are no gym memberships, new years resolutions or diets here…
I have eaten a lot of condiments. I could pretend it’s in the interests of research, but really it’s because I just like sauce. You can read more about Remoulade and Black Garlic Ketchup in my latest Foodie Finds for Surf4.
I had my first ever Five Guys. Yeah, whatever. It’s interesting that they cook their fries in peanut oil though.
I made cauliflower porridge. I won’t be making cauliflower porridge again.
I deleted my Facebook account. I’d been thinking about it for ages, I kept it for so long, thinking that I didn’t want to lose touch with people, but in reality I wasn’t really keeping in touch with people, I was just scrolling and tapping a picture of a thumb every now and then. What an absurd use of time!
I joined the library. This has meant a flurry of reserving random books for 60p a go and hopefully waiting for an email to say they’ve arrived in Norfolk and can be collected. More waiting than books at the moment, but it’s early days.
My super hair friend Gen reinstated my protective fringe helmet and worked hard to make me look tidy and smart. Then I lost part of a pretzel in my hair whilst trying to scratch my head with it.
The Toiletries Amnesty was featured in both Health Triangle and Amber magazine, and Dominique from That New Dress did a fantastic ‘beauty clear-out’ vlog explaining the whole process of donating toiletries, on her YouTube channel.
I was quoted in El Pais, in an article about Gorjuss artist Suzanne Woolcott, who, many years ago I discovered through eBay and gave her her first solo exhibition. She’s created an amazing empire, self-taught, against adversity, and I think she’s all the aces!
Thomas Cook quoted me in this ‘Insiders View’ on Italy in September.
My article on Cheese Valley has been shortlisted in the ‘Best Online Article’ category in the Holland Press Awards. I’m really chuffed, it’s obviously fabulous to be recognised, but also, that article stemmed from such a bonkers and brilliant trip that I am just glad to be reminded of it as often as possible.
We went to IKEA and a display of toilet brushes collapsed on Adam.
Shutter Hub launched the Shutter Hub Membership Bursary Fund which will be made available to photographers who are on low income and would benefit from the opportunities Shutter Hub offers. Photographers will be able to apply or nominate other photographers to receive this bursary.
Two Shutter Hub exhibitions came to a close – Out of the Ordinary in Fleet Street, London, and OPEN 2018 in Amsterdam. The next exhibition, Everything I Ever Learnt, will launch in April at Cambridge University.
I was a judge for the British Photography Awards and therefore invited to the ceremony at The Savoy for an unusual pot-luck dinner (I had noodles, rice, chilli chicken, rocket and mozzarella salad, ‘parisian’ potatoes and a lamb chop!) We’d been prewarned not to disturb the celebrities and high-profile guests. I wondered who they could be. My money was on David Dickenson, but it turned out to be Anthea Turner, a retired page 3 girl and the guy who played Nick Cotton in Eastenders.
I had a quick blast in a Jaguar F-Type R super-charged beauty at North Weald with Experience Megastore and a cup of tea in a double decker bus.
I did a Car Limits Driver Training Day at North Weald too. It was minus five when I left the house, dark and early in the morning. It was bitterly cold, the ice stayed around all day, and I expect everyone thought I was a Uniqlo HeatTech sales person the amount I banged on about thermal underwear. Proper story (on the driving, not the long johns) coming soon!
And, I finally finished putting some tyres to their test as part of a collaboration with Bridgestone. I wrote about it here, Tyre Trials: Bridgestone Weather Control A005.
Someone told me recently that they’d like to be reincarnated as a cat. I thought maybe a cat too, but then I thought, no, blackbird! They sing beautifully, dress well and they are still out exploring in the evening as the light fades.
There was a bald blackbird living round here before, and whilst I can’t 100% confirm its identity, I am pretty sure I saw him with hair the other day.