Monday, 27 April 2009

Surgery

Today, finally, I went in for surgery on my ingrown toenail. For a couple of years now, this has been causing me grief, pain, and embarrassment. It was so gross, and I was actually quite excited to get it out, but, naturally, nervous about the operation.
If you’re not good reading about injections and blood etc.,
STOP NOW.
The two rules were to: 1. Breath deeply – don’t hold your breath. 2. If you kick out, you’ll get kicked back. I thought these were pretty simple rules to follow, but apparently not… I had to keep being reminded to breathe, all throughout the surgery, as I was holding my breath from the anticipation and pain…
The worst part of the surgery was the local anaesthetic. I initially had to have two injections; one either side of the toe. But apparently I have a low pain threshold, and so needed more. The injections hurt more than I was expecting… Just the thought of it now makes me cringe…
Before the surgery began, the surgeon checked that my toe was completely numb. She did this by getting what looked like a very sharp knife, and pressing around different parts of my toe – enough to draw blood – to see if it really was numb. At certain points it wasn’t, and I knew about it. I was topped up and topped up with anaesthetic, each time the needle making me cringe, sticking into my toe… She massaged the anaesthetic into my toe, and I felt it all tingly and weird… it was such a strange sensation.
I switched rooms to actually have the operation, which, once my toe was completely numb, was alright. I plugged myself in, listening to music, and thankfully couldn’t see what they were doing as they put a screen in front of me. I just felt the pressure on my toe, and later saw the bits of my bloody nail on the side… The next I saw of my foot, I had a great big dressing on it. It’s huge.
My toe is still quite numb, and I’ve had several doses of paracetamol thus far to keep the pain and throbbing away. Every now and then, I get sharp pains, usually from the injections, which fade again, but they make me cringe so much… I’ve had my foot up most of the afternoon, and I’ve been alright, just enjoying a lazy day. I’m so glad the surgery is all over. I can’t wait for it to all be healed and better in the near future…

--Speedway-->

On Friday, I went with Dad to the Under 21s British Championship Final Speedway Meet. It was the first Speedway meet I’d been to, and it was awwesome. The long queue was buzzing even before we got into the arena. We said Hi to some of Dad's associates who were there, then found a good spot as close to the track as you can get. The event was being filmed, and I was blatantly filmed in the queue, and during the races, which I was especially excited about… The races were immmense. The noise of the bikes, the floodlit dirt track, the fumes, and the atmosphere, was amazing.
Some of the races were so intense, especially the final, with all the racers fighting to get a spot on the podium… And there were some pretty intense crashes too.
It was such a great experience...




Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Easter Break '09 + Back To College...

Now I'm back at college, but it was a good two weeks. I was so stressed and working so hard before the break, trying to get things done; I was so grateful for a break.

Of course, for the first week, we went skiing. It was really good. Fresh. Sick. Yeaah. Then we flew back into the UK Monday morning, after just a couple of hours sleep…
That following week was pretty good, too. I chilled out everyday, and went out a couple of days. I should’ve done a lot more work than I did, but I did spend some time attempting to do something academic. And I went out teaching with the missionaries a few times, which was good. Everyday I got up around 11, and didn’t go to sleep again until about 1am the next morning…
Just lazing around, social networking, etc…
-The Monday we got back, we went out bowling with the Elders. I was so tired, I found it difficult to just walk up to the lane, but throwing a hench ball soon woke me up, and my skill started to kick in…! It was funny; my half-asleep sister, who walked up to the lane and just dropped the ball, won the game, beating everyone.
-Tuesday, after sleeping for 11 or 12 hours, I spent time sorting out the pictures and stuff from skiing, feeling much better than the previous day.
-Wednesday we went to the Cardrome, where I got to practise driving some more… It was waay good, and I really enjoyed it. It was busy that day, so there were a lot more cars than normal, but I was confident, and driving better than before…
-On Thursday we went for a Chinese buffet lunch, then to the cinema to see '17 Again', which was… amusing. Very simple narrative and construction, with all the conventions to draw huge audiences and make huge profit; it was simply a business-fuelled entertainment movie. But I did laugh, which ups the score a bit. 6/10.
-On Friday I wanted to do work all day, and just as I began in the afternoon, I had an appointment to go out with the missionaries again… Then we went shopping later that evening, which was a successful trip for me. I actually enjoyed it…
-After work on Saturday, we went to the gym. I worked maybe the hardest – on weights, not cardio – I ever have, and my legs still ache from the weight machines I did… It was so intense.
It was really nice weather in the week as well, and I think summer might be arriving…

Yesterday we had to come back to school… I actually walked through the doors and thought, I'm sick of this place. It's a great school, with good people and excellent teachers, but I've been here so long… I feel like I want a change, but have to finish my AS Levels before that can happen. I have nothing against the school or the people or anything like that, but… well, y'know, it’s been a long time.
Now I have six weeks of working towards and through my exams, and then I have all summer to really chill…

Sunday, 19 April 2009

A Letter Through The Post

Yesterday, a letter through the post absolutely made my week. You know the kind of unexpected mail that just makes you so happy. My sister brought it in from the hall as I was eating breakfast, getting ready for work, just a regular Saturday morning. I couldn't believe it when I saw it. I read it, and couldn’t stop smiling...
I read it over and over… I hadn’t heard from her in such a long time, but she’s just as sweet and funny as ever…

Go Ahead, Call Me An Indie Geek

Check out the new style:
What do you think? We were out shopping, and I decided to try out a completely new style… A completely legit one. One that I never thought I'd wear. Ever. But I actually like it… Rockstarr.

I had one or two influences as I was searching around the stores, and even though it felt really weird to wear skinnys, it made a good change to my usual – but equally fit – baggy jeans, smart shirt look. I felt like such a geek trying on these new clothes… I just never wear this. But I tried it all on, and in the end I got the jeans and top, but left the hat and glasses.
And I got some new Converse. Really cool ones.
You'd better know it.

Friday, 17 April 2009

Guess WHAT?!?! :-D

Guess who can text again?!
Yeah, me!
Just this morning I sent my first text in, I don't know, about seven months! Wow, it's been a reaally long time... I updated the firmware on my phone, and it's just fixed everything. Although by doing so, it's also deleted everything on my phone, and restored it to day one. That I am not happy about; all the games, settings etc I had have gone. Forever. But thankfully everything on my memory card is still there, which I'm so relieved about... I feel like I have a new phone again!I don't know what was wrong with it, but I found out it was about 20 firmware updates behind...
Now I can make use of my unlimited texts. Anyone wanna chat?!

Thursday, 16 April 2009

15/04/09

Well, it's actually gone midnight, but I'll write that date in anyway... I've had a good couple of days. I'll write about them properly later, like later today or something, but it's been waay good. I've been kinda tired, and this afternoon, felt lethargic and crappy, until I did some excersise, and then felt much better. It's all I needed. I have a lot of college work and whatnot to be doing - I have exams coming up real soon - and really need to set aside some time to work towards them... I guess I'm getting over my jetlag alright too, but really have to go to bed. I just wanted to write something on here, and here it is.....

Not Without A Fight!

New Found Glory's new album is immmense. Have you heard it yet? You should. It's one of the greatest albums I've heard in... Well, [insert time frame here].
It's really that good.
Pure American pop punk alternative hardcore rock...
Ohh yeaahh!
After seeing them headline at the end of last year, I was put off them a little bit, just because the gig was so loud and brutal, but seriously, this disc is brilliant. So buy, and listen, and enjoy.
They've made a masterpiece once again...

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Sugarloaf Ski Trip 2009

We left the UK last Monday from Heathrow after a couple of hours on a coach, getting onto a 7 hour flight to JFK, NY. The flight was decent; there was good entertainment, ok food, and didn’t last too long. But the worst was still to come; we had to then endure a 10 hour coach drive to Sugarloaf Mountain in Maine. It was through the middle of the night, and most people were asleep. I think I got a couple of hours… We got to the hotel at about 5:00am GMT-5, so had been up well over 24 hours by that point. We decided it would be best to just stay up rather than go to sleep, which I did, or at least I attempted to; apparently I fell asleep while I was resting on the bed, because I didn’t believe everyone else when they said the teachers came in to check on us, and pass me to look out the window…
That week, I was in a room with my friend Lewis, and Jake, a year 11, and Ryan (or Pudding), a year 9. If you know why, it was quite amusing that Lewis and Jake were sharing a bed…! Anyway, I shared with Pudding, which was alright because he was so small he didn’t make any difference…

That first morning, we enjoyed a well deserved shower and breakfast before heading to the ski rental shop. We picked up our ski boots, skis, and poles, and then headed for the slopes. That first morning, the weather was dark, cloudy, and awful, and I was in a very mixed ability group, with almost beginners to experts. It was crazy, and kinda boring, as I already went through the transition from plough to parallel – a few years back. Thankfully after lunch, me and a couple of other kids had the opportunity to switch groups. We joined another school, with an instructor called Gary. We were now in the unofficially named Lower Expert group. Ohh yeeaah. It was fun. We went straight up to the top of the mountain, enjoying blue and black trails, and much better snow than that cruddy crap at the bottom.

The skiing throughout the rest of the week was excellent. As the week went on, both the snow and weather got better and better. More people from another school joined our group later in the week. We went over all sorts of different trails, sticking to blue and black ranked trails – they are the best after all! One day it was so sunny and clear, we could see the highest mountain in Maine from the top of Sugarloaf. It was pretty sweet. Some of the views from the mountain are absolutely incredible, and just being skiing in snow with icy trees is amazing…
I feel quite comfortable on black slopes, and I worked out why; half way through the ski trip, I literally learnt to ski; it clicked; I was missing an obvious but much needed technique, and as I worked out what it was, I skied much better… I wasn't putting enough pressure on the front of my boots, plus, they weren’t tight enough. Any skier will know that this is essential. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t leaning back, but I wasn't doing it quite right. There's so much to think about when you’re skiing, and you have small bursts of doing it perfectly – at least I do – before realising, and then stopping and being crap again. I had some days of skiing better than others, but overall, my technique and skill improved a lot over the week, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
At the weekend, there was a racing competition, and these skiers were immense. They were so impressive to watch, and just simple so amazing at skiing. They closed a whole trail for the races, which included slaloms and stuff…
Skiing is just so aweesome.

The evenings were pretty good too. We had different dinner and activities every night, including going to the fitness centre, watching a movie, etc… The best activities were going up to the top of the mountain in a snowcat on Thursday, and the Anti-Gravity centre on Saturday. In the afternoons after the skiing finished there wasn’t much to do. One afternoon, Lewis and I pranked Jake by taking out almost every single charm out of his box of Lucky Charms… It was a lot of fun, and took us a while, but then when he found out, he wasn't actually very bothered, so when he was gone again, we just mixed it all back together… Then we had the idea of taking out all the cereal, leaving just the charms, but he walked in as we were doing it… Lol, it was so funny… The snowcat ride was amazing; apparently it's the only 16-seater snowcat in the world, and it's basically a big vehicle with tank tracks on the side. We went to the top of the mountain, and went crazy taking pictures and running around in the snow. I got some fantastic shots with my DSLR, and it was so worth taking it just for that one evening. We were really lucky that we got the first of three rides; we saw the sun set while we were up there. Even in the twenty minutes we were out of the vehicle, my hands were freezing… It really was so cold. We went to the Anti-Gravity centre on Saturday evening, which included a sports hall, skate park, and climbing wall. I headed straight for the climbing wall, and went up to the top of the hardest climb three times. My muscles were burning, and as I tried a different trail, equally difficult, I just couldn't do it. Then the teen instructor guy challenged me to jump from one part to another. I couldn't do that, and a couple of the guys that work there tried it and almost managed it. It was impressive… I had a go on the trampolines after that, showing off my immense skillz. One of the workers there was a teenage girl, who's ranked 8th in the world for women’s skateboarding, and we watched her before we left, but unfortunately she couldn’t pull off the trick she was attempting, but it was still way impressive.

The week really went so fast. I couldn't believe it was over when it was. It was a brilliant trip, and the skiing was so much fun. After not enough sleep Saturday night, we were rudely awoken to begin the ridiculously long, tedious, boring trip back home… And it was snowing as left…

Here's the pics:
















Sunday, 5 April 2009

Like I said yesterday, I have been waay busy.

Like I said yesterday, I have been waay busy. It has been really nice this weekend to sit down, relax, and chill… So, I’ll just go over what I’ve been up to and whatnot.

Wow, it's been a fortnight… So yep, back a fortnight ago, Sam gave her first talk at Sacrament Meeting at Church. No matter what she says, it was brilliant, and everyone really enjoyed it. Sure, it wasn't perfect, but no-one’s ever is!
That afternoon after going for a walk as a family, we went over to the hospital to visit Jill, a member from our ward. She was so pleased to see us. We weren't there long, but I’m so glad we went to visit her; she passed away later the next week…

We had an awesome surprise the next day. Just as I was in bed ready to sleep, Dad came up and told me Scott's brother who’s serving a mission here was on the phone, and he was coming to our ward! I was stoked! We called up his mum straight away and told her, and she was so excited too. He came round our house on the Wednesday, which was just fantastic. He got to see where his siblings had stayed when they'd been over, and play on our piano and stuff.
The missionaries came over for dinner the following Monday night, and taught one of Charlotte’s friends straight afterwards. The Spirit was so strong, and the missionaries are such great teachers. I went out with them to teach another couple afterwards, and they belong to a different faith, so were kinda arguing against the Book Of Mormon and stuff, but the answers Scott’s brother was giving them were just astounding! He knows so much! I was so impressed, and learnt so much. It was intense, and I really enjoyed it…

Friday the 27th, as Mum and Dad went out, I stayed in and watched a movie. We had to watched Dirty Pretty Things for Media. It's a 15 over here, but R rated. I figured that for educational purposes it was ok. The film itself was very realistic, and included a decent narrative, although I thought the structure was quite weak due to the realism of the production, and could have been improved; however, I supposed they wanted to keep a simple structure, and present the production in chronological order to amplify the realism of the events. I know President Hinckley has counselled against R-rated movies, but I thought that because this was for school, I should watch it. Moreover, I’ve seen Slumdog Millionnaire. It is absolutely amazing - one of the greatest films I have ever seen. One day later, I found out it was R-rated in the States. I was so surprised, and this made me think that maybe other films aren't really that bad, but after watching Dirty Pretty Things, I actually did see the effect it had in my life, and it wasn’t exactly positive. The same thing happened in Film Studies this week; we watched extracts from films, fifteen minutes of which was Trainspotting, which is an 18 over here anyway. It was a very short extract, but still, it had such an effect on me, and I decided that even though Slumdog wasn’t too bad, the vast majority of R’s are, and that I really should stay away from them; there's nothing decent in them (generally speaking). I’ve basically gone round in a big circle, and come to the same conclusion I had already had… I just wanted to write that stuff down.

Saturday, after work, we went to Super Saturday at the Stake Centre. We had a 'talent' show for our activity, and we presented a skit we had practised at Mutual earlier in the week. It was actually so good. It was about three couples in the cinema, and one couple gets split up, but they still flirt by passing hugs and stuff along the row. We’re gonna do it at EFY this year, (maybe), so if you’re coming to the same session as me, you might see it...!

This week has been so stressful. I'm so glad we've got to the end of it. I have had a lot a lot of work to do this week, having to get on top of a few subjects at college.
I had my AS Level Drama exam on Thursday. On Wednesday night, we still weren’t ready, but we worked on it all day on Thursday, off timetable to solidly practise practise practise… We performed in front of Year 7s and 8s, and of course had to tone it down a bit. For the exam, I performed Mickey's "I wish I was our Sammy…" monologue from Willy Russell's Blood Brothers, and then our group piece was called Find Me. It's about Verity Taylor, a girl with aspergers syndrome in the 1970s, but everyone thinks she just mad, as the illness isn’t well known. She ends up in prison, after going from hospitals to half-way houses… It’s a really intense story, and all came together in the end. I thoroughly enjoyed performing both pieces, even though I screwed up a couple of times, I hope it all went well. I'll find out in August… I can’t believe it's all over now. I’m probably gonna drop Drama, so that's it, it's all over for me…

Friday, I had to spend time finishing off my Business and Film work, trying to get our production onto a disc to send to our teacher. The Lord has really blessed me this week. It doesn’t sound like much in writing, but I have been so busy and so stressed, and when I really got down and worked worked worked, the Lord has helped me work efficiently and effectively. Cutting a long and probably not very interesting story short, I’ve got it all done, and am now, once again, calm, peaceful, and happy.

This weekend, we've had a couple staying with us from Idaho, who were very good friend's of Jill's. They come over for her funeral, which took place on Friday, so they came back to ours and stayed that night and last night. They’re really cool people, and it was good to meet them.
It's also been General Conference this weekend, and it has been well good. I've really felt the Spirit, and learn from it. President Uchtdorf and Elder Holland are two of my favourite speakers, and Elder Holland’s talk in the Sunday Morning session was, I think, one of the greatest talks I have ever heard. It was just fantastic, and I really enjoyed it…

We've spent this evening packing ready for tomorrow. Charlotte and I are off with the school to go skiing. It’s going to be so good, and I'm really excited!
It’s been a good couple of weeks. This post is epic, and just goes backwards and forwards… it's been good though…
So, I guess I'll write again when I get back…!

Saturday, 4 April 2009

!!!!!!...... and chill.

I. Have. Been. So. Busy. The most busy and stressed since my AS Levels began. It’s been a hecktic couple of weeks, but it’s finally the half-term, which means more free time and whatnot. Right now, I have a free couple of hours. It’s Saturday night, and I’ve been moshing to my music. Life’s good. I haven't been on any social networking whatnot for agges, and it's actually felt quite good. So, yes, maybe I do need to catch up, but...
I can’t be bothered to say much right now… :-D