What I did
So after a pretty non-stop September, I spent most of October suffering under a lingering cold. Feel free to skip this month – it wasn’t particularly exciting! Particularly as I missioned through Sober October (helpfully, feeling dreadful with that headcold helped, as the last thing I wanted was wine).
Back in 2004, when I was a fresh-faced Fresher, my younger sister was only six years old. Next September she’ll be a Fresher herself, and this month my husband and I took her to our university’s Open Day. We go back a lot to be fair, for Christmas and alumnae events (and we got engaged during a trip back in 2013) but it was loads of fun to see the place with fresh eyes again. We ended up telling stories and legends to the student volunteers (I swear I saw the ghost of Jane Holloway!) and – although the place has changed humungously in the last twelve years – it still very much feels like coming home. I hope my sister is as happy during her student years as I was (no matter what institution she chooses!).
Monthly catch-up afficionados will remember that I’ve spent 2016 embroiled in the fundraising for my firm’s charity challenge, Wiggin’s Wheelie Big Challenge, where we cycled around the world in 180 working days using static bikes set up in our offices. The miles are in, but we’re still fundraising until the end of the year (if you’re feeling philanthropic, the link to donate is here – thank you!). To that end, I hosted a Pub Quiz, which went very well despite the fact that I calculated the points wrong and initially announced the wrong team as winners (I was completely sober, I have nothing to blame but mathematical incompetence). Apparently I am missing a trick and should become a full-time Quiz Mistress. Hmmm. Law, contemporary lit writer plus professional quiz host? I think that would be over-doing it a bit.
One of the highlights of this month was getting to watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 and 2 in the cinema again – they were doing re-runs in anticipation of the release of Fantastic Beasts. The showings were at like 10am on a Saturday, so – not going to lie – I basically rolled out of bed in my pyjamas, threw a coat over them and went to the cinema. It was a real treat to get to watch the films in a theatrical setting again – and Dobby and “Always” still get me like woah.
Finally, Hallowe’en – low-key celebrations on the Saturday with Nearest and Dearest wherein I was dressed in a fluffy pink unicorn onesie, and coated in glitter – not the world’s most flattering costume but, hey, I was super comfy lounging on a beanbag, stuffing my face with takeaway and watching short horror flicks on Youtube. On the actual day itself tradition was adhered to – ribs for dinner and a vieiwng of Hocus Pocus with friends (who kindly helped to eat all the sweets I’d bought for trick-or-treaters, as none ever showed up!).
So, November! I’m looking forward to not having a cold. I love, love, love Bonfire Night (I’m a sucker for fireworks. And cinder toffee. And bonfires. Et al) and this year I’m at a wedding, so it will be extra special. Then it’s off for a long weekend with the Nearest and Dearest to Amsterdam, where we are meeting up with – yes! – Dearly Deported Best Friend. We’re staying in a converted 1920s laboratory so if I don’t come home with a good ghost story, I’ll be disappointed. At the end of the month, my favourite little lady Isabelle turns 3 (and I’ll be rocking in a corner wailing about how fast time goes) and my father celebrates his 60th, so lots to get on with! See you on the other side!
What I read
My Brilliant Friend, Elena Ferrante (☆☆)
Dead Level, Damien Boyd (☆☆☆)
Winter, Marissa Meyer (☆☆☆☆)
Mata Hari’s Last Dance, Michelle Moran (☆☆☆)
Under Rose-Tainted Skies, Louise Gornall (☆☆☆)
What I wrote
I was so ill for most of October that I wrote…. absolutely nothing. Shameful, I know!!
What I listened to
Top tracks on my Spotify this month
- Rascal Flatts, I Like The Sound of That
- Rebecca Ferguson, Bones
- Becky G, Break A Sweat
- Jason Derulo, Get Ugly