Miss Alexandrina

The thinking-space of a not-quite novelist


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Photo of the Week: Red Foam

I took a lot of spontaneous photos this week, and as such, I had no idea which to display today. I walked around a local park yesterday and starting taking photos of Orienteering posts; I took some more abstract shots of Gormely the Dapper Squirrel; I had some fascinating drinks at a friend’s birthday on Friday.

AlexB_RedVelvetTGIF_bw

I suppose my American friends know the restaurant TGI Fridays (or is a British replication thing?). I certainly enjoyed the food and the drinks in the one in Reading. Ribs, cheesecake, and a couple of these beautiful cocktails, fruity and light, with a foam top made of egg whites – think liquid meringue.

I utilised a black-and-white photo to capture the glints of light off the glass. The foam really caught the light, making for a difficult shot in the low-lighting of the restaurant.

The original colour-photo to get a sense of the red:

AlexB_RedVelvet


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QOTD

Alexandrina Brant:

Another Quote of the Day from independent author Trish Marie Dawson. For me, this exemplifies the life of a writer: all ideas swarming and we have to think of which to give precedent, and there are all the problems that automatically come with marketing and social media, et cetera. Being a writer is tough, but it’s not tougher than us; and we try again.

Originally posted on TRISH MARIE DAWSON:

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Photo of the Week: Turaga

I enjoyed spending time trying to capture all six of these Lego Technic Bionicle Turaga (owned by The Boyfriend – I have a couple, but I never managed to collect them all myself). But, yes, I was happy with the photo qualities – I took a lot of duds, but there was so much variety with the photos that I did have left over that I wasn’t sure which I’d put as my significant photo of the week. Hence, the spares…

AlexB_Turaga_9 AlexB_Turaga_13

FYI, photos taken with my proper camera not phone. I like them.

In case you never knew about Bionicles, I’d say definitely look up the Brickipedia (Lego Wikipedia), for there is so much lore to be discovered. I mean this – I have one of the Bionicle films in my VCR collection.

AlexB_Turaga_1


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7 Quick Takes About Contemplating Consciousness, Birthday Business, and Anticipating Arrivals

Oh, look ^^ alphabetic alliteration. :P Another Friday has crept upon me, but I am glad it is the end of the week. 7 Quick Takes is hosted by This Ain’t the Lyceum, and you can see the rest of the blog-hop participants there.

It's Friday, so that means Seven Quick Takes! @emily_m_deardo

~1~

Exams: 2 down, 3 to go.

~2~

General poll for anyway passing who has an opinion: what is consciousness and how does it link to the concept of the mind?

Philosophy of Mind is proving a trickier module to revise, as I find myself falling into contemplation at every little question of the state of consciousness and how it ties into the actual question most philosophers are asking of whether and how the mind (or the mental) and brain (or the physical) are linked. I actually finally got myself to settle by asking my neighbour, who studies Systems Engineering and Cybernetics, and he gave me a satisfyingly empirical-evidence based answer that also involved squids. That will do nicely.

For now at least.

~3~

In Chamber Choir, we are cracking through Mozart’s Coronation Mass in C. Yesterday was quite a testing rehearsal for me, though, as I wasn’t on the game and got called out for at least three faults – and not even on the movement I didn’t know and was sight-reading on the spot. With my mental condition, it is moments like those that shock my confidence, which is only just beginning to revive me. I keep telling myself that others’ reassurance is irrelevant to how I view my singing, but after years of bullying for being a singer, I feel like I need to hide behind a crowd, rather than indulge my desires to be soloistic.

~4~

The Coronation Mass, as it is so elegant and summery. My personal favourite movement is the fourth, the Sanctus. I seem to have a soft spot for Sanctus movements in big choral pieces.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_NP_z6LmscI

~5~

For my birthday week, I’ve actually not being doing that much. Revision as a priority, and then I joined the rest of the Swing Dance committee for a few drinks after our Weds lesson, as it coincided with my birthday. It was nice, and I wouldn’t really have wanted to do much in any case. I am 20, and it is inconsequential.

~6~

The Boyfriend is joining me this weekend – squee – and we’re attending a Swing Dance workshop focusing on footwork and British Collegiate style variations. It’s an all-afternoon thing, so I’m a little nervous, but it should be a fun break, as I know most of the other attendees. *looks to the sky* I will leave my room! :P

~7~

I’m also doing a really mature thing and cooking dinner tonight. I have a frittata recipe I tested out (for one) last week, and it worked pretty nicely. I will be tweaking the recipe when I do it for two, but I reckon I can come up with something nice either way. Fingers crossed! I think one of the biggest misconceptions about university students is that we are always low on food (I always have too much food) and (okay, two biggest misconceptions) that we somehow fail at cooking or don’t like it. I definitely fall into the contrary of that.

Thanks for reading. See you next week!


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I Have All I Want: A Birthday Post

As is the way around birthday times, people were asking me what I wanted for my birthday (which is today, in case I didn’t make that clear enough).

IT IS MY BIRTHDAY

AlexB_guinnesscake

I maked this cake today ^_^

Now, to that question, I replied the same as I generally do: I don’t know. Other people’s birthdays are hard enough to buy for, and, in all honesty, I’m not a big birthday celebrator. It’s just another day in the life of the universe. It is a celebration of a single person, but not a celebration that others can appreciate as a community.

At least last year, though, I kind of had ideas for presents, even if they were little things or things that helped me with life, cooking, existence. :P But, I don’t know, last year was a weird year. I knew exactly what I wanted for my birthday – what I’d always wanted every year – but I knew I wouldn’t get what I’d wished, so any presents were just filling the space.

Yet, this year, I have not been so bothered. Regardless of having two exams on Monday and Tuesday (the two days before my birthday), and trying to focus on them, I also have not been interested in presents – or even in people knowing that it was a day on which I was born 20 years ago.

Maybe it’s because I don’t really get attached to material things. I mean, if you’re going to buy my dinner or a drink, you get a grin from me, but I don’t want chocolate or jewellery or makeup or clothes. I don’t want flashy items. I am, by nature, a pragmatic person; I like doing. Besides, as a spoilt only child, I’ve had enough of things.

And, sure, I’d love to say that I don’t want material gains because material things mean nothing to me – as in, there is Him whom is greater than worldly positions. Part of my desire to push away material possessions stems from my faith.

But I think it runs deeper than that, runs deeper than my convictions. Maybe I am just a person of simple interests. *cough* Unlikely. *cough*

My personal desires and levels of happiness in and of themselves have turned birthdays into less consequential days than they used to be. And I like that.

The point is, this year I have everything I’ve wanted – within reason. I know I have to wait and persevere for career and family advancements – but no material possessions, no magic changes in my academic scores, or even no free drinks or experiences can change the feelings of lightness I have been blessed to feel in the last few months. Most significantly (if we must move into specifics), I have someone who is happy for me to look after him, and him to look after me; I feel as if God has opened my eyes to my purpose again with a wonderful gentleman.

I may not be working at my optimal, yet, emotionally and physically and even mentally, I have been more than averagely well. That for me this year has been better than any present, gift, or experience. That for me is a birthday present that lasts beyond a single day, event, or box.

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