winter: (emote - crazy)
You're supposed to be very young indeed for the wild jaunts along the lines of spending 13 hours on a bus just to see a rock concert. I decided that yesterday was my last chance to do it while, technically, in my twenties. (Or just over the line, since I was born at 6AM.)

And, well, it was Queen. QUEEN. I learned English from their lyrics, and Freddie Mercury was the first famous person over whose death I cried. And they've never done a concert in Poland. Ever. Until yesterday.

20 thousand-plus people in a giant stadium. 20 thousand-plus people knowing and loving and singing every line of every song. Brian May with THOSE guitars, 25 metres from me. Brian Fricking May, with endless solos and acoustic songs and I have no idea why his guitar didn't catch on fire. And Roger Taylor (assisted by his son as second drummer and how precious is that), and dear gods can he still sing.

And hey, Adam Lambert. Whom I've followed since American Idol, because you have to support upstart musical actors with delusions of grandeur. Who loves Queen as much as we all do, and you could tell. He wasn't trying to be Freddie, the Departed God of our common religion; he was the priest of this ritual, guiding us and travelling with us for the songs where Brian and Roger were busy making instrumental magic. His voice broke during Show Must Go On, his breath catching just like mine did. I had a hunch he could do this justice.

This ranks in my top two of favourite birthdays ever, along with Yamaguchi von Krolock in Tokyo. I think spending my birthday out of town may get to be a Thing.

Who Wants to Live Forever

Show Must Go On
winter: (fandom - kenshin oro)
It's been quiet, which is - good, I think. It's starting to turn into spring.

I've gone back to Echo Bazaar, which has removed the daily action cap, so it's even better for new users now. If you want to give it a try, you'll need a Twitter account (or Facebook), and please let me know - I can invite people now, and inviting will probably give both me and you something nifty :)

Related to Echo Bazaar, I managed to max out my data limit on the phone. It just means throttled bandwidth, but lack of surfing ability has left me occupying myself with Obenkyo Japanese flashcards on my commute. I think this "learn more Japanese" thing may be working.
winter: (elisabeth - maki annoyed)
Between August 16 and September 2, I was working every day. I just had my first free weekend and, predictably, spent it sleeping off the stress.

Today, I was on the road for 12 hours, due to a meeting in another city.

Tomorrow evening, I fly to Prague. Three days' training, then Saturday-Monday for sightseeing.

I'm taking the computer, but I might not be around much. I'll be trying to rest, because the alternative is passing out with exhaustion at some point next week.

But! I managed a pathetic two responses to the crossover meme:

Buffy and Phantom )

Star Wars and Tanz der Vampire )
winter: (portraits - golden mask)
First, thanks to everyone for the congratulations yesterday ^_^ I still can't believe it's over, or that I actually managed to be systematic and diligent enough to complete the programme. Apparently this year, 22 thousand people took Level III (some of them for the fourth or fifth time) and only 51% passed.

Second, to kickstart my creativity, meme from [livejournal.com profile] selenak:

You, the friendslist, give me two characters you know I'm familiar with from different fandoms, and I'll give you a dialogue between them, without justifying how the crossover would work, how their worlds clashed, or how they could even meet each other -- just a silly crossover conversation for fun with no backstory.
winter: (takarazuka - ichiro vamp)
With the overall rush, I completely forgot to post about my new toy.

Since mid-May (just before Paris, in fact) I've been the proud owner of an HTC Desire ♥ It may be last year's model, but it's plenty fast, durable (I managed to get it caught out in the rain and drop it on a stone floor thus far), and I'm loving both Android and HTC Sense. Yes, you have to charge it daily, and hack it to move all apps to SD because the internal memory is laughable, but it's a tiny computer that works like a phone. I'm finally living in the future ;)

Requisite list of apps + plea for recommendations )
(Also, it's called Karenina, the wallpaper is Maki Ichiro as Anna Karenina, and the ringtone is Maki Ichiro singing Ich Bin Ein Echtes Wienerblut. In case you were wondering.)

The best thing about my new phone is that it means I don't have to drag a computer with me everywhere to stay completely connected (Echo Bazaar included). Thus I can take much lighter luggage to the lakeside cottage for the nine days I'll be spending there - leaving this afternoon, back on the 7th in the evening.

Not AFK in the least. Unless my signal's out.
winter: (emote - oro)
My colleagues won't let a birthday pass by without a demand for sweets, so I spent this evening baking alarming quantities of muffins ~.~

But! For the first time I made up a muffin recipe almost from scratch, and had it come out right :D

Chocolate-rum-raisin-gingerbread-coffee-chocolate-chip muffins of DOOM )

Now to sleep, and wake up a year older...
winter: (takarazuka - ichiro elegance)
On top of the exhaustion I've managed to catch a cold, but with the short-handed team at work, I had to muddle through it. Packages to everyone waiting for them will be sent today ♥

I've spent the week glued to Twitter, mainly, catching up on the Japan news. At [livejournal.com profile] help_japan there are several thousand wonderful offers you can bid on, all money to go to charity (and donated by you to one of several reputable charities directly, so that you can be sure money isn't mislaid). I still have one free slot on my fanfic offer - your chance to get, for a donation, fanfic written in any obscure fandom we share, to your specification :)

I've seen misinformation that as a rich country, Japan doesn't need donations; I'll let UNICEF explain how for the first time in 46 years, this major charity contributor country needs help on its own.

Flat update: all furniture that needed putting together, is put together. Still not clean, because the cleaning lady was off sick, but that's on Monday. Most importantly - it's hooked up to the internet, and thus classes as livable :D Which is a good thing, because I've been informed someone is going to be sleeping in my room here on Friday. Oops?

Finally, I've had problems with LiveJournal notifications since March 1st. Now that I've switched to Gmail and some delayed ones came through, it may be resolved, but if I missed your response to a comment - or your entry, in my fog of exhaustion and illness - please let me know!
winter: (takarazuka - vintage samurai)
...I've spent the day glued to Twitter and news sites. It looks like things are mostly in hand by now, and my hat is most definitely off to Japanese engineers and emergency responders - it seems incredible that after a disaster like this the death toll isn't in the tens of thousands.

Everyone I know is all right, though shaken. InFocus has pictures. At #18, it really hit me hard: "Dammit, I have photos of this place. I was there." That, and the news that the Tokyo theatre of my favourite revue remains open all night for theatregoers who can't get home when the trains aren't running, a performance of Romeo et Juliette suspended during intermission.

(And Twitter consensus seems to be that the Red Cross may be the optimal donation route for the time being.)
winter: (objects - stars over the Rhine)
Dead to the world, though I now have kitchen cabinets (!), far too many bills to pay and still a mountain of stuff to buy. One more Ikea trip, a few more broken nails putting things together, a thorough scrubbing, and the flat will be as ready as it will be. Photos this evening.

In the meantime, meme swiped from [livejournal.com profile] 3peanuts:

Contents of my bag )

And just for the record: tonight will be the first time in four weeks that I have a free evening. Not a free day; a free evening without work or shopping for the flat.

I may need to slow down a little.
winter: (fandom - weaver of stories)
So I went and saw that movie. Someone give Colin Firth his Oscar now, plzkthx.

It's fantastic, but for me it was also personal. I owe a lot of mental stability and general wellbeing after Ireland to the speech therapist who patiently taught me how to breathe and not seize up with nerves. (I still slur my Polish Rs, but apparently that's anatomical.)

Here's to speech therapists. Angels in disguise :)
winter: (todesglocken - Thanatos)
I'm certainly not going to shut up about the Japan 2010 trip (so many pictures!), but I'm now checked into my flight, 95% packed (give or take pajamas and cosmetics) and safe in the lovely J-Hoppers Osaka hostel. In 12 hours I'll leave it and head to the airport.

For Whom The Bell Tolls is very good in a high-drama way. Tomochin is a scene stealer ♥ Tomu is really exceedingly pretty ♥ ♥ ♥ And the show has the best mini-revue I've ever seen at the end of a two-act show: Tomu gets the musumeyaku ballet, and the otokoyaku ballet is epic, Spanish and exceedingly long. (Also, Yuuhi. YUUHI. She and Tom are going head to head in my YOU GIT ranking.)

Final shopping is accomplished. Someone cleared out Taka-An of all Ichiro Maki photos and it wasn't me, but I did get an Anna Karenina clearfile.

Last time on the Hankyu train back from Mura. Last walk through the maze of Umeda stations.

I think it's safe to say I'll be back.
winter: (fandom - Amelia)
The Koya-san cold managed to put us both under the weather - I'm the one who's actually upright, so I'm taking the opportunity to sort through photos. I can't believe there are less than three days left before I'm back home.

J-11, days 1 to 5 - Kyoto, Nara 1300th anniversary celebrations, Tokyo )
winter: (objects - writing)
Apparently mid-November is the perfect moment for Koya-san tree-watching. I fear I took 444 photos of red and gold leaves. Oops?

It's also exceedingly cold. I think my toes are still encased in ice, and we've been back in Osaka for over an hour now.
winter: (elisabeth - glomp)
Safely ensconced in gorgeous little quiet Takayama, after yesterday spent running around in the best crazy style (checking out, luggage lockers, toujitsuken, Gypsy Baron, on shinkansen within 20 minutes of leaving the theatre, 8:30PM in Takayama hostel). Shockingly, no shows to see today or tomorrow ;) Mind you, Tuesday to Friday I'll be seeing one every day. Again.

Crazy, crazy trip ♥
winter: (emote - joy)
A few people on my f-list have already linked to Elizabeth Moon's diatribe on why immigrants should shut up and change to be just like everyone else. I didn't comment on it, because I literally couldn't find the words.

Shweta Narayan says it more eloquently than I ever could.

I have the luck of spending most of my childhood in a country where others are like me, and of a multi-cultural education from the cradle. But I was also a Slav travelling in Western Europe just after communism ended. I was nine years old, in a supermarket in Paris, and I talked to my mother in halting, broken French, because I knew that if I spoke Polish, everyone in the shop would stare and follow us to make sure we didn't steal anything.
winter: (emote - give me coffee)


Photo is from her halfway house (she's a foundling rescued by a very nice cat lady). Milady is now exploring, while Lestat grumbles. *goes to hug furball the elder*
winter: (objects - tattoo)
I finally saw Inception and enjoyed it very much. I like Leo in general, Ken Watanabe is always awesome, and Tom Hardy caught my eye back in ST: Nemesis and has only grown into his potential since :) (Btw, Eames/Arthur recs, anyone?) I also loved the fact it wasn't about the beginning of any romance, though Marion Cotillard was awesome.

My theory about the movie under the cut:

Spoilers for Inception )

Also, it's less than a week until my vacation. From late Friday till Sunday the 22nd I'll be off at the lakes, with intermittent mail-checking via mobile. Should anyone need me, smoke signals may be useful.
winter: (portraits - purple)
Happy Tanabata, everyone :)

七夕おめでとう

(And yes, I get a birthday Google logo again.)
winter: (elisabeth - maki eyedart)
Edinburgh's as friendly as I remembered. I'm about to depart on a three-day tour to Skye, so until late Wednesday evening I cannot promise anything in the way of net contact, but it will be awesome :)

And um. This concert. Can you pick out the person who has been taking a maternity break for the last four years?

*squees quietly* If she is in anything by October, I may be embarrassing. Very much so.

(And DVD, please? Because with that lineup there's a chance for Maki-Mori Oscar-Andre, or Akanesasu Murasakino Hana...)
winter: (takarazuka - saryan ojisan)
So, on Saturday I have Ryanair tickets that were supposed to take me to Edinburgh to see a certain bearded Welshman in a certain adaptation of a Victor Hugo novel. I also have a mini-coach trip booked to Skye while I'm there, and generally a week of entertainment all planned. (Oh, and picking up my Maki Ichiro Sayonara Book of Doom). Right now Monday flights are decidedly cancelled - and everything else is up in the air because the bloody volcano is still spewing out dust. I am very, very annoyed.

(On the other hand, according to his Twitter, said bearded Welshman is currently stuck in Egypt... lose/lose?)

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Beth Winter

October 2014

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