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On Being Boring

I moved from London to Brussels with my husband nearly 10 years ago. When I told people we were moving, the news was greeted with bemusement: why did we want to move to a city that was possibly the most boring place on earth? Ten years later and I can honestly say that I've had more fun here than I ever did living in London. It might not be the most exciting city in the world but it is a fantastic place to live. It is full of hidden treasures that you probably never get to see as a tourist: wonderful shops, amazing food, great museums and galleries, beautiful architecture, a forest (yes, a whole forest), and so much more... And if that doesn't convince you, well, get on a train and you could be in Paris, Amsterdam, Cologne or, yes, London in no more than a couple of hours... Which other city can you say that about?

I May Blog (or I may not)

I’m participating in a Blog Every Day in May project. YEY! But wait, it’s the 2nd of May and I didn’t blog anything yesterday. So I’ve already failed. I’m already behind. Well yeah. But I only found out about the project today, through the lovely and talented Angie Muldowney. So it’s her fault really. Yes, let’s blame Angie. For now at least. When I drop out of the project on day 5, we’ll find someone else to take the responsibility.

 So here we go. Subject 1 is “5 Lines – Introduce yourself or sum yourself up in just 5 lines. Include a photograph that you are proud of”.

 1. I am not a cool person. I am not on Twitter or Vine. I’m never in the know about the latest trends. I wish there were no such thing as “fashion”. Why do things have to go in and out of fashion? It’s confusing and frustrating. I don’t own a pair of GINORMOUS headphones. I don’t have an iPhone or an iPad. I don’t and can’t wear heals. I don’t get excited about boutique coffee shops because I don’t know of any (though I’m sure they must exist, even in Brussels). In fact, I don’t even really know what makes a person “cool” so it’s hard for me to define exactly why I’m not. But I’m just not, believe me. I wish I were.

 2. I am not a fan of the moving image. Maybe that’s why I have absolutely zero interest in Vine. Ha! My husband has often tried to convince me to watch a film on the premise that the “photography” is beautiful. But it’s not photography if it’s moving! And it does nothing for me. There are photographs that I could literally stare at, entranced, for hours. But I’ve never had my breath taken away in the same way by the imagery in a film. I’d prefer to learn through books than through documentaries. And I’d take a good novel over a trip to the cinema any day. I even prefer reading the news than watching it. I’m weird.

 3. I am not very knowledgeable about anything and am intimidated by people who are. People who can recognize a piece of classical music from just it’s first few bars or who can explain events in history with names and dates and places, linking cause and effect, and explaining repercussions. My husband can list every single American president and every British monarch in order from the very first ever right up to the current one. He can draw an accurate map of Europe, freehand,  and write in all the country names and capitals (he can do the same with the US and its states). He can answer nearly all the questions on University Challenge. And all the questions in Trivial Pursuit. Not me. I read a lot but I’m not knowledgeable about authors and their works. I’m not even knowledgeable about bleedin’ photographers! If you asked me who my favorite photographers were, I’d stare at you blankly. I actually don’t know if I could list 5 famous photographers. Well maybe… Maybe I could do that if I were allowed to think about it a bit. But I wouldn’t be able to tell you anything about them except for perhaps that they shot one iconic image or another. Style, inspirations, techniques? Nope, nothing. And yet I love knowledge. I love books. I read a lot, all the time. But my brain is a sieve. Information goes in one end, is briefly savored, and then evaporates completely and utterly, like a wisp of smoke.

4. I’m not musical. I don’t listen to the radio. Or to any of those fancy internet music service thingies. I couldn’t even name any of them. I don’t have a CD player. The least used function on my iPod is the music function. Music to me is more noise than melody. And I don’t like noise. Some people will tell you that they have music constantly playing in their heads, like a soundtrack to their lives. I don’t have a soundtrack. I don’t associate specific songs with specific memories. I can’t sing. I can’t play any instruments. I can’t dance. That’s not to say that a tune doesn’t occasionally get under my skin. From time to time, there’ll be a song that I’ll merrily jump and down to with my children. But it’s rare. I’m not passionate about music. I don’t go to concerts or festivals and I never went to night-clubs. This is one of things I’d change about myself if I could. I’d love to be able to be moved, truly moved, by music.

5. I’m not good at following rules. Especially where those rules concern being concise. And including pictures.

(and do you know what I’ve just realised: every one of those sentences starts with “I am not”. All things that I can’t do or am not good at. Useless. OK, I promise to do a follow-up to this post where I tell you things that I can do and am good at *scratches head* there must be something!)

2 May 2013 - 9:44 PM amanda - Yes, I agree you should do an "I am" post and I totally disagree with #1. You are so cool. xoxo

2 May 2013 - 11:48 PM Angie - Mwahahaha - I like being a bad influence! You know it's only the truly cool who think they aren't cool, don't you? The rest of us are just wannabe's. I'm so with you on #3. I mean, I consider myself reasonably intelligent but have no recall when it comes to facts or names. Who are you again....?

3 May 2013 - 3:32 AM melissa - the music thing? i'm so surprised by that. fascinated, even. i DO think you're cool, though.

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