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Sunday, 21 August 2022

Fairy doors and other encounters

A long time ago, long enough that I've forgotten where I wrote about it, when I first started going out and exploring the outside world as Susie back around 2016/17, one of my walks led me down a side path off the canal towards one of the neighbouring villages. Almost the first thing I noticed when not keeping a wary eye for other people on the path was that a number of the trees along the path were adorned with tiny wooden doors and houses. There was even a sign hanging in one showing "This Way to Fairyland ->".

(I've grown a lot more confident about meeting other people when I'm out and now it's something I look forward to, otherwise walks can feel a bit lonely. This morning I lost count after exchanging about a dozen 'good mornings' and stopping to fuss several friendly dogs. I wonder if it's the walks I now I look forward to more, or the small social interactions as Susie, as a sort of validation/reassurance that I'm not seen as the terrible ogre the Tory right wing would like you to believe.)

The Fairyland sign is no longer there as far as I could tell when, on a whim, I decided to explore that path again this morning. But the little fairy doors and houses are still in the trees. In fact there seem to be more than I remember. Some of the additions, like the little wooden boat floating in the creek, were even more surreal.

Wiki has an entry for Fairy Door, and it seems to be something that started around 2015/2015 both in the US and in part of the UK (though it also warns of the harm that can be done nailing or gluing things on trees).  But it's an odd little form of rural art, or whimsy, a bit like the trend for decorating street furniture in towns (knitted hats on post-boxes, or scarves for lampposts). It's also rather charming.



            


              




















Saturday, 9 July 2022

Drop till you shop

Another early morning walk down to the canal towpath and back through the nature reserve whereupon nature's own call suddenly made itself felt. (Perhaps that second cup of coffee was a mistake before going out for a long walk.) Luckily Sainsbury's was just across the road, which also provided an opportunity for a bit of retail therapy. I'm really on the look for a pair of light blue skinny jeans, but all they had were darker colours. I may try the village later.

Or perhaps I need a poodle skirt and lots of petticoats to go with the trainers and bobby sox look. (this perhaps?)*


Am I overdoing the 'mumsy' look a bit here?


[ *warning. You can get lost in this site and lose whole mornings.]


Thursday, 23 June 2022

Halfway: Going up or coming down?

Three posts in as many days. what is she thinking?

She's thinking that she's having the time of her life and rather wishes this could just go on forever,  but I'm just over the halfway point where I'm counting the days left before Susie has to go back in her box.

Decided to go the other way up the canal path this time and come back into town by bus. Forgot that my bus pass is only valid after 9am, so ended up with a longer walk back than I anticipated.




Wednesday, 22 June 2022

Park Life

In which our heroine ventures - a bit - further afield...

'confidence is a preference' says Tony Daniels at the start of Blur's Park Life.

Having tried all the local parks, I thought I'd try one a bit further, although it's really only a short hop and skip of a bus ride. 

Actually I've been here before on an exploratory visit a couple of years before lockdown, so I knew there were generously sized gender-neutral loos that I could change in, and back for the trip home. 

I wasn't confident then or now to try the whole trip there and back as Susie, but maybe that's still to come. 

Glorious day, although perhaps leaving it to the middle of the afternoon wasn't the best choice. Or forgetting to pack a bottle of water along with the myriad other things I needed to remember for the change bag (skirt, check; flats, check; wig, check; forms, check; wipes, check; keys, check; camera, check; keys, check again). It's these days you really envy women who can just pull on a pair of shorts, sandals and a loose top and be out in 5 minutes without having to bag half the contents of the bathroom.

(Although I did see one girl, years ago, empty what looked like the entire Boots cosmetics counter out of her bag onto the bus seat beside her and give a full makeup demonstration to anyone watching. I wouldn't have been brave enough to put anything near my eyes on a bus hurtling down a country road full of potholes. Astonishing, she looked immaculate when she got off at the station.)

 

meanwhile, some other park life... (I was examined briefly for food and then summarily dismissed.)

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

Another Green World

Well, perhaps not a world, but maybe a small island, or more likely another recreation park.

Google maps showed that there was another block of green out at the top of the village, although until now I had never found it despite the fact that I must have passed it several times, so this morning (it being a day for Susie, after what feels an long time, although it's probably 'only' been five weeks) I decided to go and find it.

behind the green door.
Whenever I see a door in a wall like this I am reminded of stories where someone comes across a mysterious door that they'd never noticed before in a wall  and whether they go through it or pass it by their lives change forever. Probably the most famous is H. G. Wells' story 'The Door in the Wall'. but fantasy is full of these doors to other worlds. Though I suspect this one is just to someone's back garden, but what a neat thing to have your garden open out onto a park.

 
And not just a park, but a nice bit of wild space with trees and interweaving paths off to one side which make this feel more out the way than it actually is, given it's enclosed on thee sides by residential roads. 
(When you go to the end of one of those roads, though, and cross over onto the footpath, the fields beyond run into the distance, with the top of the spire of St Mary's Church off to one side. 
I remember standing here early one morning years ago watching a family of deer playing.)

Today was an opportunity to give the sparkly silver trainers I mentioned at the end of my last post a first outing.

time for a nice sit down after all that exploring.
One of the exits from the park came out in the middle of a rather familiar looking road, almost opposite the house where a couple of our friends live. Since they don't know about Susie, I decided not to chance it and found another exit that would take me out a  different way.


In other news, yesterday afternoon's Teams call from work was the first time that the rest of the company Pride Network committee got to meet Susie, although they've know about her since I came out and shared a photo of Susie on Trans Day of Visibility.  blog post: Differently Wired










Saturday, 14 May 2022

Back to the Bridge

Same place, same bridge, and almost the same outfit - not quite almost eight montha on.

Last time I was here I had just got a long floaty skirt. This time it's a different one, which I thought also deserved a first outing. 

I like this place. It's peaceful and quiet - or is at the moment, until they start building a huge football stadium right in the middle of it. And I do like this rickety old wooden bridge.

It started misty earlier in the morning, but had cleared up by the time I'd done a bottle bank run and a quick detour though Sainsburys where I tried on a pair of trainers (too tight for comfort, even in 8 - but see later). Sainsburys now seems to have a far more expansive cosmetics counter than I remember.
Then across to the the nature reserve and a slightly circuitous route to the canal bridge (OK, I got slightly lost and ended up going in a complete circle) and a walk back along the towpath.
In all it turned out I'd been out just shy of a couple of hours by the time I got back which is, shamefully, probably the longest I've walked in a over a fortnight.

This was new - the  'Jubilee Grove'. 
Not so sure about the poem though. It seems to be the sort of thing people write when they're tying to be deliberately poetic. But then, I'm a Modernist. What would I know?


The cows were new too, in a fenced off area to one side of the path, all wearing fetching yellow numbered earrings.  

A couple more views along the towpath on the way back. Almost nobody about at that time except a pair of ducks and couple of people steering a narrowboat under a bridge.


I've seen this pair of trainers in the charity shop for a few weeks now and so far  resisted, but this morning the allure of a pair of girly trainers in sparkly silver proved harder to resist, although I probably need to be careful that they don't shed glitter all over the carpet that could prove hard to explain. (Harder than why the closet is filled with skirts and dresses, none of which are in L's size?)


Time was..






Sunday, 17 April 2022

A Good Friday indeed

 Another day, another hairstyle.
A cheapish brunette bob wig I've had for years, but I quite like the way looks in this photo.

The last afternoon (Friday) of a four day break spent almost entirely as Susie while I have the place to myself. In the words of the late John Le Mesurier, 'It's all been rather lovely'.
L returns in a couple of hours so time to clean up and tidy  away any evidence of Susie presence and put her back in the box until next time she can come out to play. (Perhaps I should have been named Looby Lou, although that reference may be lost on anyone not old enough to draw their pension.) How can a single girl leave so much mess in her wake?

I may have taken visibility a bit further than I intended in the morning when decided the day was too nice to stay indoors and went down the village to see if any of the shops were open. However, being a bank holiday, and an Easter one at that, I rather forgot that a lot of other people might be out and about, including several I know in non-Susie life. Two of them were taking part in a Good Friday service outside the church and I'm not entirely sure whether I got one of those 'where have I seen you before?' looks from one of them as I passed. 
Maybe it was that that also made me oversensitive as to what two girls were privately giggling about in one of the charity shops, given that I was the only other customer at the time. Who knows, and really, who cares?
xx