Friday 27 February 2009

And so…

Wow, it seems I was a bit premature about looking on the bright side of life yesterday… but enough about that, because after all, it is Thankful Friday and in the grand scheme of things, I can deafinitely find things to be thankful for.

High up the list is Fab Friend. She came over for dinner last night and was, well quite simply fab. She gave me balanced, considered advice and made me feel a whole lot better about stuff – and that’s got to be a good thing. Her full name is Fab Friend Who Actually Wears Her Hearing Aids and she’s the best pep talker when I am feeling like my hearing loss is a heavy yoke around my neck. Needless to say I woke up this morning feeling less like it is…

I am also thankful for the sun. Sun helps our bodies make vitamin D – which in turn ensures healthy bone development so at least I won’t be getting rickets any time soon.

Finally I am thankful for The Rents who are paying me a visit this weekend. It’s Ma’s birthday on Sunday and we are going to London Aunt’s for lunch to celebrate – it should be great.

Family are important when you’re not sure about much else – I know mine are always there when I need them and I’m very thankful about that.

I think, that as the news gets more doomy and gloomy, more people’s lives change course in ways they had never anticipated and the future takes on a new meaning, it’s a good idea to be thankful for those little things – they’re like the blobs on top of Lego that glue everything else together and stop it all tumbling down.

It’s not about the latest this, the latest that, whether you’ve ticked the boxes you expected to tick, or got where you wanted to go – it’s about remembering what’s really important, right here, right now.

And that’s really all I’ve got to say…

Thursday 26 February 2009

Always look on the bright side of life

Deafinitely Girly is feeling strangely emotional today. Perhaps it’s because she’s had a bit of a busy week with work, or is fighting the various bugs and ailments that are floating around the Capital.

Either way, nothing prepared me for the fact that I welled up while eating my breakfast and watching Neighbours. Big fat tears rolled down my cheeks as Harold Bishop struggled to come to terms with the fact that he’s dying of cancer…


I can still remember when my bizarre but unashamedly-open love affair with this Australian daytime soap began. I was about 8 and it was when Mike (Guy Pearce) and Charlene and Scott (Kylie and Jason) were in it. The first episode I ever saw was when Lucy Robinson got stung by a bee…

Gripping stuff!

So anyway, yah, Harold is dying…


I was still feeling oddly morose on my bus to work and this was coupled with mild irritation for the Chelsea Girl who kept flicking her blonde extensions in my face and smacking my knee with her stoopid bag.

She had the audacity to huff when I folded the paper I was reading and it encroached on her space, so I sent her silent thoughts of anger while I was welling up about David Cameron’s son Ivan dying – a heartbreaking story.

And then, like a bolt from the blue, a crazy sign of the funny side of life was revealed to me that actually made me laugh out loud – the Chelsea Girl by this point had moved seats, not keen to sit by the snivelling, laughing lunatic she clearly thought I was.

There, in Knightsbridge, was someone vaccuming the pavement with a Henry Vacuum Cleaner! Seriously, this lady was walking up and down outside Benetton, the little red vacuum at her heels, cleaning up London grime.

How brilliant is that?

It reminded me to ‘always look on the bright side of life’ – I’d like to whistle after saying this sentence but I can’t hear myself whistle, or anyone else for that matter, so I doubt it’d be very tuneful.

How about you do it for me…

Wednesday 25 February 2009

Micro Clog

Tap, tap, tap, tap

I am impatiently awaiting the arrival of my new nephew Micro Clog who is due to make an appearance very, very soon. It’s quite exciting that I will soon be an Aunty of two Clogs – I will have to make sure I wear lots of rouge, long floaty garments and pinch their cheeks a lot when I see them before smothering them in big kisses.

But it’s quite scary to think that Mini Clog will actually be a Big Bro himself as he’s still so diddy. Apparently he knows all his numbers and colours in Dutch and English and is quite a little talker. He also tells off Big Bro when he does something wrong by saying, ‘No, Daddy, no, no, no!’ It’s nice to know that there’s someone else to tell off Big Bro now we are separated by the sea.

I also hope that Mini Clog is as great a big brother to Micro Clog as my Big Bro iss to me. I mean, I was quite an annoying little sister – I knocked Big Bro’s front teeth out, nearly broke his nose and insisted on wearing exactly the same clothes as him as I thought it would make us twins – in my defence I was about 4 years old and an avid Topsy & Tim fan at the time.

Anyway, I guess it’s a waiting game – Big Bro has confirmed his impatience in waiting to become a dad for the second time, too! There were suggestions of star jumps to kick start labour but thankfully he thought better than to make Maxi Clog jump up and down at almost 9 months pregnant.

However, being knowledgeable on this sort of thing, I can recommend, eating curry, going for a walk and um,


nipple twiddling

*double blush

Want to know more? You’re going to have to Google it I’m afraid…

Tuesday 24 February 2009

Perilous exercise

Ow, ow, ow, ow, and ow!

Deafinitely Girly is in pain today and I am afraid to say, it’s self-inflicted and centred around her neck.

As I have mentioned in earlier blogs, my gym has closed thanks to the trusty Crossrail scheme and so I must find an alternative form of exercise. Now, as I write this, I can hear running fans everywhere clamouring about how I should just go for a jog outside – it’s free, it’s great exercise, etc, etc….


I don’t like running – I have never liked running and much as I hope that if I ever took it up, I would become one of those beanpoles who proclaims how they couldn’t run for 5 minutes before but now they can quite happily run consecutive marathons – deep down I know this is about as likely as me suddenly waking up to discover my legs have grown to a reasonable length and my calves have stopped being obese.

It’s not actually that I don’t like running, it’s that I hate it with a passion usually reserved for Big Brother wannabes.

I remember once on a cross country run at school, my teacher actually gave me a piggy back as I was taking so long he was worried he wouldn’t be home in time for dinner and his wife would be angry. Doing well in the annual school cross country race was getting back before nightfall and during the athletics season I made sure I shone in rounders for both my year and the year above so I was always too busy to be called upon for the long-distance races.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not completely unfit, I don’t think…
I don’t wobble when I walk, I can do 2 pull ups on the handrail on the tube, will quite happily walk for miles, my BMI is apparently spot on, and I only just have a double figures figure. But I would like to keep it that way…

So anyway, as I was saying, while on the search for a credit-crunch, running-free exercise mode, I found an old exercise video under my bed. I’ll give this a go, I thought and rammed it in my video player before attacking the moves with gusto. What I hadn’t allowed for was the weird positions my neck would end up in, in order to keep lipreading the enthusiastic instructor while doing my crunches, lunges and goodness knows what else – I don’t think I was this deaf last time I tried it. So while my other muscles are slightly tender after my workout, it’s my neck that’s really feeling the burn and it wasn’t in need of toning up in the first place!


But on a plus, I am actually doing quite a lot of exercise at my desk today as I cannot turn my head from left to right. So, instead I have to turn my whole body, which if you think about it uses more muscle groups… so perhaps I will benefit after all!

Monday 23 February 2009

Who gives an Oscar?

Anyone being paying any attention to the Oscars’ results that are littered over every news’ website and paper this morning? I have been purposefully and perhaps a little stubbornly, ignoring it all.

I don’t care whether Slumdog cleaned up on 7 out of 8 awards that it was nominated for, or that Kate Winslet finally won an Oscar…

And here’s why…

I couldn’t see any of the films that won, even if I wanted to, because movie subtitling is still so rubbish!

A quick look at the Now Showing section of and it’s easy to see how impossible it is for deaf people to add to their film resume – for instance, at the cinema nearest me I can see um… absolutely nothing at all. Last week I could have seen Revolutionary Road at 5.10pm – except realistically I couldn’t as I have a job and taking holiday to see a movie is, quite frankly, ridiculous.

In all fairness there are Sunday showings of movies – 2 weeks ago they screened The Secret Of Moonacre and 3 weeks ago they showed the Oscar winner itself, Slumdog Millionaire… once, at 2.30pm.

How great is that? One subtitled showing of a movie acclaimed by all.

Anyway, being girly and um…


…into predictable, romantic chick flicks, I’d really like to see Confessions Of A Shopaholic, and I was excited to find that it’s showing at another, slightly less local, cinema at 3.15 and 5.45 on Tuesday 24 Feb – that’s tomorrow and oop, surprise surprise, I am at work!

Gingerbread Man once commented that I moan about the same things over and over in this blog and it’s always the same story – but that’s part of the point. It is always the same story – nothing is changing or getting better when it comes to visiting the cinema and being deaf.

So, I am off to pen a polite-ish email to the Bigwigs and ask them what they’re going to do about it!

Friday 20 February 2009

Teach yourself…

Today is Thankful Friday and a Google search proves I am not alone in celebrating Friday in this way. Pages and pages of results came up from bloggers left, right and centre proclaiming Thankful Friday – so many in fact, that I didn't show up until page 2!


Today I am thankful for Sample-Sale-Pal – I work with her and last night, at a company awards ceremony, she was my translator! A comedian called Michael McIntyre was our host for the evening and he spoke faster than the speed of light and moved around even faster than that. I didn't have a hope in hell of hearing what he said. So, whenever anything was really funny, Sample-Sale-Pal would fill me in.

It's a bit frustrating missing out on things like this – comedians are hard to subtitle so even if I had stuck my neck out and shouted for more formal support at last night's awards, I am not sure there was anything they could have done to make it easier for me.

Plus, I think I am actually the only deaf person in my company... and that makes shouting for help at big events seem a bit weird. It’s kind of like saying, ‘Please do this for only me, even though it might inconvenience everyone else.’ And, that’s just not something I am good at doing at the moment.

When I was much younger and not quite as well acquainted with my deafness, I used to wish that I could be one of those people who went to the theatre, stayed awake for the whole play and came out knowing what they'd seen. I didn't put two and two together and realise that the reason I fell asleep was because I couldn't hear anything and that Shakespeare made no sense to me not because I didn’t get the language but, again because I couldn't hear anything – I just thought I was doomed to be uncultured forever.

But the problem is, I sometimes feel that being deaf does make me uncultured... I'd love to go to lectures at The National Gallery on Gainsborough and why so many of his paintings are unfinished, and see the latest plays and movies when I want to – not when an accessible version is aired once a year at their convenience and my inconvenience.

Sure I can read, which is why my bookshelf is groaning under the weight of a ton of reference books – right now I am reading unknown facts about England and it’s fascinating. God I am a geek…

But I guess, since I went deaf, I’ve always had to teach myself rather than glean info from other sources – I did it during my degree and even my A-levels – might explain some of my questionable grades and why I never contemplated being a teacher!

Hopefully one day in the future, Thankful Friday will be all about how fabulous it is that all movies are always subtitled, all plays have optional subtitles and all lectures come with transcripts or voice-activated subtitles. I know the technology is there – just got to convince people to use it now.

Thursday 19 February 2009

Good morning, bad morning

I have news: we have New Neighbours

I have bad news: After this morning they will hate me already, and this is why…

6am: Wake up feeling a little dry-mouthed after a lovely dinner with Clever Katie last night. Wander into kitchen missing the step and landing with a bang. Kitchen is above New Neighbour 1's bedroom – blindness and deafness first thing does not an elegant girl make.

6.03am: Turn on tap in kitchen and water comes out with a lunge, bang and wheeze – am pretty sure that for hearing people there's a high-pitched wailing accompanying it.

6.30am: Fall up the stairs with mug of tea and toast while trying to balance a glass of water in crook of arm. Wall now tastefully decorated with green tea and jam, New Neighbours privy to the crashes and colourful language uttered.

6.31am: Make mental note to self to use trays more often

6.40am: Attempt to tiptoe round room and succeed in slamming cupboard, getting drawer stuck and wrestling with it while it makes a weird grinding sound and covers my floor in sawdust.

6.41am: More colourful language

7am: Shower curtain falls down in bath – thankfully not while I am in there and makes a resounding crash that even I can hear. New Neighbours will definitely hear this.

7.01am: Pray that New Neighbours are a) also deaf b) at work already c) not already on their way upstairs to shout at me.

And so my morning continued in this similar fashion. I tripped over a pair of boots, sent my hairdryer flying in quite an impressive fashion and slammed the front door with excessive force when my scarf got caught in the letterbox. Cue more colourful language as I stomped downstairs only to miss the only working bus in South West London, forcing me to get on a rubbishy slow one with no subtitles to explain to me why we pointlessly sat at every bus stop for HALF AN HOUR.

*deep breath in
*deep breath out

But what's weird is that I love mornings, I am normally a morning person – perhaps tomorrow will be better...

Wednesday 18 February 2009

I'm nearly 1

Well, my weekend in the country only served to fuel Friend Who Knows Big Words' suspicions that I am ALWAYS on holiday as she called me last night on my way home.

It was nice to have a long weekend and see The Rents and Gma. There was still snow on the ground when I got home on Friday night and it was only yesterday that it gradually began to melt away leaving everything looking quite tired.

Bring on spring I say!

It's quite nice starting work on a Wednesday though. It's such a quick little countdown to the impending weekend – of which I have a few high hopes for...

Watch this space.

A look at the calendar tells me that Deafinitely Girly's page of words is now nearly 1 year old... can you believe it? I am sometimes shocked that I am able to rabbit on day after day and that some of it is actually readable. But then I think about how much I talk and it all makes sense.

However, I often wonder where all these thoughts and feelings about deafness, life, love and general rants would have gone if I hadn't set up Deafinitely Girly. Would I have ended up, fit to burst with unpublished information, muttering away to myself as I walked along, people crossing the road to ignore me?

Anyway, I am thinking of having a birthday party for Deafinitely Girly's page of words – there will be cake of course and most probably a pub excursion – any excuse for the rebirth of Hoegarden Thursdays – so I will keep you posted.

Ta-ta for now. c",)

Friday 13 February 2009

Going home

Today is Thankful Friday!


Today I am thankful for one thing – that I am going home this weekend.

Gma is also going to my rents this weekend and apparently we’re going shopping as she wants some new clothes – hurrah to that I say. I wonder if she’s ready for the latest fashion of Harem Pants?

I haven’t been home since New Year, so it will be nice to relax, catch up with Ma and Pa, watch movies, play in the snow and entertain the moggies – who from what I’ve heard are less than impressed about the snow.

And that, today, is what I am thankful for, nothing more, nothing less.

Ooooh except that’s it’s Friday 13th – my lucky day.

Have a good one.

Thursday 12 February 2009


Guess what?

This morning my bus broke again! The doors stuffed up and as a result the driver kept coming out of his cabin and kicking them...


Today, I am nursing a bit of a sore ankle after an evening of Wii Fit at Gym Buddy's house! You see, since the announcement of the closure of our gym, we've been looking at other forms of exercise and last night, it was the turn of the Wii!

Now, truth be told, I was quite terrible at most of it. My virtual hulahoop kept falling to the ground, my tennis regularly saw me whacking the ball clean off the court, and my tightrope walking saw my little blonde Mii plumet to her death screaming!


But, that is not why my ankle is sore. On arrival at Gym Buddy's house she explained that the reason why there was a Friends boxset in the middle of the hall floor was because there was a broken floorboard. I heard this information and an hour of Wii later, forgot it and, on my way to the kitchen put my foot through the floor and went flying, without my foot following.

Gym Buddy found me flailing wildly, one foot wedged between some pipe work, sock missing and dignity evaporated. It was not a pretty sight!

And so, I have skin missing on my foot and it's stinging. It's like the grazes you used to get as a kid when you were clumsy and never looked where you were going and were always in a hurry to do everything immediately.

I wonder when I will grow out of that phrase...

Wednesday 11 February 2009


This morning I woke up and felt like I had never been to sleep – it was the weirdest feeling and not at all pleasant.

I lay there struggling to work out how my body had ignored the 6 hours of sleep I had given it but didn’t find an answer. So I got up.

My journey to work was marred by a broken-down bus – yesterday I was on a broken bus too, and I was also on a bus that got lost in South Kensington and ended up near Hyde Park – it made me very late. Is there a pattern forming?

This morning’s bus was chugging along just fine – I had a seat upstairs in the glare of the low morning sun but I knew that downstairs was stuffed to the gunnels with people from later stops than me.

And then, it stopped for quite a while, at a useless bus stop in Shepherds Bush. I sat there twiddling my thumbs and then, all of a sudden the bus driver announced something unintelligible down his mircrophone and there was a stampede to get off the bus.

Naturally the deaf girl in me thought the worst in the announcement (bombs, fires etc), especially as the descent of my fellow commuters down the bus stairs was far from leisurely, while the other bit of me stayed calm as I followed the baa-aaing sheep down the stairs.

My scorn of my fellow travellers doesn’t end there actually either – there we were, a heap of angry commuters waiting for the next bus. When it arrived I was quite near the door – the crowd surged behind me, an elbow clouted my head and a fist pushed the small of my back – forty people were trying to get on an already-full bus.

At first I wondered if I had missed something –was this the last ever bus of this number? Did these rude people’s lives depend on getting on this bus?

I quickly ascertained that I didn’t give a toss whether it was last ever bus or if their lives depended on it and burrowed my way out of the scrum. The bus left, so full that someone’s face was literally pressed up against the doors.

Two seconds later, a bus rounded the corner, empty – I boarded it and sat down, the warmth of the sun on my face allowing me to catch up on the sleep I felt like I didn’t have last night.

Tuesday 10 February 2009

Happy Birthday Big Bro... and London Aunt

Ok, so yesterday was a no show on the blog front… but it wasn’t my fault! Honest! It was the fault of a broken-down train near Reading that slowed my arrival to London down and meant I didn’t have time before my afternoon at work started to write…

If I had have done, I would have waxed lyrical about the fab time I had with Onion Soup Mate, G, Big Top and Little Top. After travelling down first class – only the best for DG – I arrived rested and ready for a night in The Cider Bar. And what a night it was…

Cider it would seem is Deafinitely Girly’s truth drug – so if you want to know any secrets of mine, just ask Onion Soup Mate and G, they know them ALL!


Anyway, it really was the most splendid weekend – there was dinner out for Little Top’s birthday, trips to a strange shop called Trago that sold everything including the kitchen sink, and lots of tea, chats and delicious food.

I also made a startling discovery! Onion Soup Mate and G don’t have a TV but they do watch the BBC’s iPlayer quite a lot. On Sunday night they logged on, with me getting comfy with a book knowing I wouldn’t be able to hear it. But then, we discovered that the BBC have done what they promised and subtitled the iPlayer. I almost didn’t get to watch it as I passed out from the shock, but there they were clear as day on QI. It was marvellous and a great start in making things more accessible for deaf people.

Look at me, saying nice things about the BBC, whatever next?

But now, it’s back to reality – work and wotnot – but it’s OK really because today is a momentous date in the calendar. It’s Big Bro’s and London Aunt’s birthday! Big Bro is now


and London Aunt is perpetually 21.

As Big Bro is far away in Clogland I had to send him his present but tonight I am having dinner with London Aunt, which I can’t wait for…

I love birthdays! Roll on mine!

Friday 6 February 2009

pinkberry update

Well today is thankful Friday and I am very thankful to be writing this blog on Pinkberry while whizzing through the snowy Wild West um Country on my way to see Onion Soup Mate and her hubby, G in Devon!

I am also thankful for First Class rail travel and the free tea and biscuits you get... Mental note to self: no more economy!

I'm very excited about the weekend...we're going to explore, drink pear cider, and I will get to see Big Top and Little Top, too!


And on that note, have a good weekend too!

Thursday 5 February 2009

Boats? Mountains? Eh?

When I say Gondola, do you say Venice or mountains?

Deafinitely Girly had a panic the other day when she was with Jenny M that she had had another ‘Versailllllllllles instead of Versigh’ moment.

Avid readers will remember my Christmas post about being stuck on a gondola in the middle of the French Alps as there was a fire at the lift station. Well, I was telling Jenny M (who isn’t an avid reader, tsk, tsk) about this story and she started to laugh at me… the kind of laugh where tears spurt out of the eyes and one goes the colour of beetroot.

She then informed me that gondolas were boats in Venice and not lifts in the French Alps.

OMG, I thought, matching her beetroot red colour but certainly not laughing – does this mean that I effectively told my readers I was stuck halfway up a snowy mountain in a long boat with a punt!?


I wracked my brains desperately searching for the sense in the situation, wondering how I could have misheard, and misinterpreted and misunderstood two things that are so glaringly different and made a pact to amend my blog on Tuesday morning and remove any reference to boats in the Alps.

That was, until I saw SuperCathyFragileMystic and told her of my idiocy and she promptly informed me that gondolas are in the French Alps, too – and they are cable-car shaped!


And so I hit on Google this morning to confirm this and there it was: Gondola – a boat in Venice, Gondola lift – what I got stuck on in France! So if I am being precise here, I should really go back and add the word lift, but I won’t as perhaps a bit of ambiguity is a good thing.

It’s nice when you realise you haven’t made a massive cock-up – it’s reassuring to know that my IQ level hasn’t reached worrying low levels yet. But I should warn you, mishearing words is a frighteningly common occurrence in my life so if you hear or read me doing it, please drop me a line…

You know as a child I once shouted bugger at the top of my voice, much to the horror of my Ma, who gave me a jolly good telling off. I was really confused as I thought I had made up a new word that sounded like bother…

Then there was the time I got twit confused with something quite different that I can’t put here…


Tuesday 3 February 2009

These are a few of my favourite things…

If I am honest, I do quite like raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens – I mean a whiskerless kitten would be kinda weird – but they aren’t on my favourite things list.

Daffodils however, are! And I saw my first bunches for sale today when I slid out at lunchtime and found myself beaming at the sight of them. They really are the most smile-inducing flower in the world. I mean, there are carnations – which make me think of garages, gerberas – which just don’t look real, roses – which to be honest I find a bit scary, and orchids – which are just waaaay too high maintenance.

But daffodils – well there’s just something right about them. They’ve got a sunny disposition and simple attraction that other flowers just don’t have. It’s like they’re happy being the underdog of the flower world, as the bloom that costs the least in Tesco Express and would never find itself in a wedding bouquet.

Anyway, is anyone else missing the snow? I mean I know it’s still here, but it’s grey and slushy and downright nasty now. I want the white fluffy stuff back that made my car look like an iced Christmas cake and stopped London transport working! And I want a mountain in south-west London so that next time it snows I can get a bit of skiing in.

When I woke up this morning I was praying for all of the above, but instead, I got the subtitles on BBC Breakfast informing there was going to be destruction on the buses today. Quite alarmed I looked at SuperCathyFragileMystic, who’s staying with me right now, and she burst out laughing.

Turns out it was disruption on the buses – which there was – and people were so desperate to get on board, there was almost some destruction, too!

Monday 2 February 2009

Snow day and DG to the rescue


Gee whizz

by gum...

Deafinitely Girly is overwhelmed by the weather - it's slightly mental don't you think?

Today I have been completely unable to get to work, along with most of my office... everything in London has stopped working, at least where I live it has and so, I am in the cafe across the road from me with Pink Top updating my blog.

Last night, when the snow began, Jenny M and I could hardly believe our eyes. At 10pm we were watching a DVD when suddenly I was aware of a low humming from outside my flat. But nothing prepared me for what I saw when I looked out of the window...

There, as far as the eye could see, was buses, big, red double-decker buses - bumper to bumper - it was quite incredible! Being an inquisitive sort, I went downstairs to see what was going on and found 26 forlorn bus drivers quite unable to go anywhere as the road had frozen over and a sliding bus is a dangerous thing. Worse still we discovered was that they were not allowed to leave their buses either.

And so there seemed only one thing to do - Jenny M and I made tea for everyone. Scraping together all my mugs and teabags we distributed steaming cups along the queue of teeth-chattering drivers, having a natter with them as we did so. Some of them were so cold that they hugged their mugs rather than drink the contents, while others downed their tipple in one!

And, once we had dealt with all the bus drivers, we gave some to the police officers as well, who when we asked them for their order were in the middle of a massive snowball fight with a load of drunks from the pub opposite! It was most surreal.

There was, rather wonderfully, something of a party spirit on my road, everyone chatting, laughing, pulling together. A guy from the flat down the road donated a packet of fig rolls and some more tea, while other people rallied around with other provisions.

Eventually Bus Recovery Engineers turned up and we watched in fear and wonder as they manouvered these humungous machines through the snow and ice with the bus drivers learning. As each one left, they waved, they promised Jenny M and me free bus travel for ever more and chugged off into the night.

It was sad to see them go and we were also faced with a mountain of mugs to wash up.

This morning there are no buses, there's no tube either from my snowbound part of London... it's earily quiet, earily white - I kinda like it!

DeafGirly: How I feel about being deaf at work

It's been a whole year since I posted a blog on here. Life's been happening. And I guess I am no longer 'deaf in the city and ha...