Team Andy’s Curry Club

July 18, 2008

NaBloPoMo July 08 Day18

Last night we ate out, for it was Thursday, which means Curry Club!

I’ve been promising to go to Curry Club with members of my team and had to keep putting it off, either they or I was on late shift etc….. It all came together yesterday and we managed to get 5 of us in the same place at the same time 🙂 (The 2 no-shows barely deserve mention.)

Team Andy's Curry Club

You’ll have to excuse the picture quality, I realised this morning that I left the camera on “close up” for all of them. So only the actual close up of the food is of a reasonable clarity.

The 2 NRI’s proclaimed the curry to be of a passing standard. The mango chutney however, caused wrinkled noses and was discarded after the first tasting.

Top left, food. Top right, Satya between Luke and Lisa, the mosiac maker was pretty cruel in cropping them out of the frame. Bottom left, Paul and a blurry Nick. Bottom right, Luke and Satya admiring Luke’s wonderful photos that are no doubt much better than these, if only for being in focus!


What Holiday Food Are You?

December 23, 2007
You Are Eggnog

Rich, sweet, and probably a little drunk. Everyone who knows you tends to get a little fatter.
What Holiday Food Are You?

So, although in recent meme I claimed not to know what eggnog is, I actually AM eggnog!

Given this news, I went and found a few recipes for you to try.

If you like things a bit simpler this one from Gino D’Acampo is probably for you

Enjoy 🙂


Weight and see

August 6, 2007

Over the last couple of months I been trying to lose some weight. After my last holiday, I had reached an all time high of 12st 6lb (80kg) and was starting to get a bit down about it. I think I’m doing doing pretty well, and am currently about 11st 12lb (76kg)

You might think that 8lbs over 4 months isnt a lot, but I have to do this slowly, without resorting to any drastic measures.

You see, I’ve been here before and it wasnt that pretty.

Around 1995 I was back living in my hometown, totally closetted both at work and in my social circle. I was also desperately unhappy and so for 2 years I just existed. That is to say I got up in the morning, went to work, came home, ate a meal, went to the Pub with friends, came home, went to bed and repeat. I started putting on weight, not surprising really, I was an unhappy lazy slob.

This is when it started. I used to tell myself it began with an unkind word, that seemed to justify things better. In fact, I realise now that it actually began with a kind word. I’d had a few days off the beer for some reason and at work I was complimented. “Oh, you look well, have you lost some weight?” The sort of throw-away compliment that we’ve all made at some time or other. This cheered me up a little, after all, who doesnt like to receive a compliment?

So the wiring in the brain starts to take shape, like an equation.

Lose weight + Compliment = Feel a bit less miserable inside

I began cutting down on my food intake and more weight came off. More compliments followed and the message, “thin is good”, was reinforced further. I reached a point where my lunch at work was a sandwich of cottage cheese on 1 slice of Hovis Wholemeal. My Evening meal a microwave baked potato, eaten dry usually but sometimes with a little chopped tomato to moisten it. I was still going the Pub almost every evening and having a couple of pints of beer, that didnt count though 😉

I think I hit a plateau around 9st 7lbs (60kg) and stayed at that weight for a few months. I thought I looked great at the time, people wanted to know my dieting secrets, how well I’d done. In fact, My brother told me years later that he had been worried I was seriously ill, Cancer or possibly even Aids, that sort of thing.

Here is the family friendly version of how I looked then

pme2a.jpg

This is the not so nice version, click if you dare! Dont worry, I’m not totally nude or anything!

Things took a turn for the worse at this point. Having plateaued, I felt I was no longer getting the attention that I had enjoyed and so my brain came up with a new plan. I began to ask myself “why shouldnt I eat what I liked?” I wasnt losing any weight anyway so fuck it! I began to eat and eat and eat. Then , you guessed it, I immeadiately regretted eating and forced myself to be sick. (That’s still quite hard to say out loud)

A new cycle emerged, where previously I’d eat very little, for example taking a single sandwich to work, now I’d eat a full meal in the canteen. Shortly afterwards I ‘d be in the toilets being sick. this went on for some time and the weight started coming off again. Along with some damage to back teeth enamel and gums, I should add.

In mid 1998 I met Paul and I was at my lowest adult weight, 8st 9lb (55kg) looking back at photos, I cant believe how thin I was.

During our first few months together I was still doing it. I’m sure that Paul had no idea, I’d eat a meal and then go off and be quietly sick. You get good at that. It sounds impossible doesnt it, being quietly sick. I cant do it now, I’m as noisy as anyone else, I guess I’ve lost that “skill.”

We had a blip, me and Paul, I finished our relationship because he was getting too close, I was falling for him big time and I could’nt cope with that. Luckily for me he didnt give up and after a few awful lonely weeks, we were back together. Shortly afterwards I moved in with Paul and that changed things totally.

I was now away from my hometown, new friends (Paul’s) and a new job where I was out and proud! I was happy, happier than I’d been in years, possibly happier then ever before. I stopped being sick and started eating normally, I even put weight on and it didnt worry me.

I still have an “odd” relationship with food at times. For example, Fish must have its batter removed and Pies, Sausage rolls and Quiche must all have their pastry stripped off or left on the plate. If I have planned what I will eat or have chosen from the the menu and its not available or the plan changes for some reason it throws me into blind panic. Similarly, if I’m put on the spot like “What do you want to eat?” usually I cant just answer right away, I have to think about it. Then I feel that all eyes are on me and it panics me a bit. I’m still working on that!

You’ll notice I’ve avoided labelling my “condition”. You might be thinking Anorexia or Bulimia. You might be right. I would’nt want to label myself with those names,but only because I’d feel a fraud. My sudden cure through falling in love seems too easy and somehow unfair to all those people who suffer with eating disorders all their lives.

So, its took 9 years of not caring too much about my weight to get from 8st 9lb up to 12st 6lbs.

andyface3.jpg

Not too bad going, but some of it now has to come off. I just need to go slow and not get obsessive or silly about it. So I’m playing it cool, If I lose 1-2lbs a week that will be plenty and I know when to stop this time, 10st will be just fine thanks.

I was going to turn off the comments for this post but, what the heck, I’ve had my say, you have yours 🙂


Vodka War!!

July 1, 2007

Apparently, we in the midst of a Vodka war! Who knew?

But dont panic, because the Vodka war may soon be at an end.

So that is some good news this morning 🙂


Rested, relaxed and back to work, Hrmph!

April 9, 2007

We got back from Lanzarote yesterday afternoon, feeling all relaxed, the only downside is that we are both working today*.

This morning, waking up at 06:20 was a bit of a wrench, though not as much as it was for Paul. When we are away, my body clock wakes me at roughly the same time as home. So I get up and mooch around, go for breakfast, usually sitting at the breakfast table with a book and several cuppa’s**. Then at a decent time for Paul, around 10:00, I go back to the room with a Croissant and a large chocolat au lait or similar. He loves his bed that boy does.

Anyway, we stayed in Costa Teguise at the Ficus Apartmentos on an All-Inclusive basis***. No grumbles about the hotel at all, food**** was varied and there was always something to eat. The Weather was varied, some cloudy days but overall it was mostly sunny, and believe me on those cloudy days you really feel how hot it is, when the Sun emerges it feels like someone has turned up the gas!

The entertainment was ok, the “animation” team were from the UK so there was none of those incomprehensible games that pass for entertainment in Hotels in mainland Spain 🙂 Sadly, I was unable to win one of the prized “Superstar” T-Shirts, despite learning the oath I needed to make at the winners ceremony each evening. Since I learnt it I’m going to say anyway, now repeat after me…..

“I do solemnly swear, I will wear, my Superstar T-shirt around the pool, and in doing so I will look kewl!”
“The entertainment at the Ficus rawks!, and on the way home I will tick the excellent box!!”

When we arrived we were all like, lets go and see this and that, do trips and stuff. Then, as the first week went on, this enthusiasm waned a little and we were content to just lie around relaxing. At the start of the second week we tried to hire a car, yes that right “we tried” unsuccesfully, to hire a small car for a couple of days. I’ve never known anything like it, all the car hire offices (and there were loads) were staffed by people employed only for the purpose of explaining “we have no cars today, come tomorrow.” What kind of car hire industry is that? One without cars, or the ability to book ahead, because they dont know if they will have any cars tomorrow or the next day. After 3 days we gave up.

Lets see, what else? Oh yeah, the flight home had the most kids on it that I’ve ever seen. An Easter thing I suppose. I ended up sitting next to 2 under-10’s, whose Parents and 3 year old sister were seated in front. The elder kids were no trouble, the little one kept coming around and trying to squeeze through to her sster in the window-seat. she was a cutie though so I put up with her gracefully, even when she appeared with a crayon and paper and asked me to draw something for her! Paul was fuming at this point as he pointed out that I was babysitting the kids and the Parents were having a whale of a time. When I had a look and confirmed that they had already downed a whole bottle of Champagne, I stopped playing. Really, the nerve, I bet they couldnt believe their luck!

We were back home by about 19:00, so plenty of time to catch up on Corrie, Betty Suarez and those Housewives that we all love so much. Interestingly, it was more about the husbands of Wisteria Lane, which was a nice change.

To round off our holiday mood, we ordered in, Chinese food, and stuffed our faces, yum yum!

I’ve got some nice photos, I’ll post some to Flickr soon and link them from here.

Promise.

* Only thinking of the Bank Holiday overtime is keeping me going!

** I’m back on the Coffee btw, but I’m drinking de-caf now.

*** I sound like one of those travel-TV-holiday-shop presenters off SKY

**** Though I am grumbling about the 8lbs of excess belly I checked in for the return flight.


We aint here to party

February 18, 2007

We had a note through the door last Wednesday, warning us of a party on saturday night . It was from our neighbour, no not Kev and Jon, the other side, the girl that moved in while we were on holiday. Her note was very nice, inviting us to attend her gathering at any time during the evening.

On Friday morning we went to get in the car to go to work and OMG there is a shopping trolley in her garden. Ok, so she doesnt drive and stocking up on food and drink for a party is a lot to carry, but hey! anyone heard of a taxi??

The worst thing about it really is that it was Netto trolley. At the top of the hill you a choice, Netto or Somerfield, why did she choose to have a Netto trolley? If it was me I’d have shopped inNetto then gone across to Somerfield to steal a trolley for the walk home.

So, the party. We already had plans for Saturday so were not planning on “popping in” However, we did witness the early stages, dozens of youngsters wandering around with drinks in hand. Did I mention that they were all (whats the PC phrase?) black guys and gals? We had phoned a taxi at 20:15 and told it was coming in 10 minutes, 3 repeat calls later it finally arrived arond 21:30.

I had to laugh when I was standing at the door looking if the taxi was coming and I heard one guy telling a group to come indoors. “The party is inside guys, there are white folks in this street that will be scared if youre all hangin on the street.”
Made me laugh so much, not sure if he was taking the piss out of us “whites” or out of the whole race thing?

Whatever, I had a laugh, I was doing jokes about bling, gangsta raps, drive-bys and being lined in chalked.

The trolley is still there today, I’ll let you know if it ever finds its way home 🙂


Arm-a-dinner-jad.

January 30, 2007

In almost unbelievable, extra-ordinary news, I used the name of the Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in conversation last Thursday.

I know! and I even pronounced it correctly thanks to that nice lady from the BBC pronounciations department.
When I heard her saying it recently on some radio show or other, I thought, “oh! thats good, bet I never need to say that in conversation.”

I was wrong of course, because sooner or later you’re going to have a drunken conversation about the worlds scariest places to live.

Iran is #2, not sure I can remember the full list now, I can’t even remember what was #1.

Oh no, wait.

It was Wales 😉


Big Brother special edition

January 27, 2007

So, I notice there has been a bit of fuss about celebrity Big Brother. I missed most of the footage because it happened while we were in Spain last week. We were aware of the row of course, people in the hotel were buying UK papers and we had Sky News in the room. However, without the race row, this years CBB was set to be the most rubbish ever. Apart from going on holiday, we were already planning to stop watching on our return. I never actually believed it but Paul actually has been able to stop tuning in! Well done him 🙂

Anyway, I was thinking how to spice up and revive the whole BB franchise. And, take note Endemol, I’ve got it.

I present to you, >>>>>>> Big Brother Tramps.

Oh, yeah, thats right baby, Tramps!

After nationwide auditions of homeless alcoholics , we get 13 weeks of dirty Tramps constantly fighting and/or drinking cider. If they try to sleep they shock them with some high voltage stun gun things. Can you imagine? I know!

The shoppping list will consist of cigarettes, cider and pot noodle. If things get boring, BB either takes away half the booze and chaos ensues or BB throws more booze in and chaos ensues.

I promise you, its gonna be great 🙂


Torremolinos Tale

January 21, 2007

Remember I mentioned the Spanish Pensioners? Odd little people really, have you ever seen them ? They forego the all-inclusive bracelets beloved of us Brits, preferring instead to occupy every chair in the room but not buy a drink. They tend to pull all the chairs to the front as the hour of the cabaret approaches.

I always look forward to Paul’s mum, Val, having a go! She never lets me down, she is always ready with a “Look at ’em all, they take up all the chairs and never buy a drink!!” 🙂 She’s right too!



TorremolinosJan2k7 008
Originally uploaded by Andy2Boyz.

Quite an odd sight as all the tables are left alone around the room, remember, these people have no need of anything to put drinks on 🙂 See how they sit in lines as close to the stage as possible, almost like a meeting in a village hall 🙂

Its all taken worrying seriously, especially when you consider they are all so desperate to see the same old shows years after year. Captain Stefan on Accordion, a troupe of ropey Flamenco dancers, a slightly grubby looking Magician, the Parrot show and of course Siegfried and Roy. No sorry, I made up that last bit, its just ballroom dancing after the Bingo!

The other thing is how the old ladies all move in gangs around the hotel, crowding themselves into lifts and generally taking over the place. The knock all us “polite” brits out of the way, if we are queuing they just barge in. Best laugh though when an old lady tried to take over the toaster machine I had my bread in. How rude! Except she was putting it on the conveyor belt the wrong end, she kept shoving it back in, the conveyor delivered it back to her. I kept saying “wrong end” and pointing to the other side, she kept smiling, as if to say “I know what I’m doing, stop trying to hog the machine!” She only realised her error when my toast, having made its slow transit through the machine, emerged and started pushing hers out the way. hehe I had to chuckle as she picked up her bread and walked around me to the other end of the toaster.


In The Pink

January 20, 2007

Allow me, if you will, to take you on a journey to the Flamingo Hotel, Torremolinos……..

Picture this, we are in the bar at the hotel, the 5 of us a little worse for wear, its the second day and we have definitely found our feet with the all-inclusive drink, if you see what I mean.

The “Bar Salon” itself is chock-a-block with Spanish pensioners. In fact that’s a whole other post on its own, keep an eye out for that one!

The upshot is that our gang are sat at the back in a little offshoot-annexe, immediately behind the bar.

I’ve already noticed the couple at the bar, a guy and (I presume) his wife, both appear to be mid 30’s. They’ve caught my eye twice already. Firstly, as I silently berated her for her choice of a large green flowing number to cover her “plus size” frame. Secondly, when I noticed them look in our direction and then put their heads together in conspiratorial fashion.

A few minutes later the guy approached our group and homed in on me.

He said, “Hey mate, wearing pink is not a good idea here, I’ve heard Torremolinos is the top Gay place in Spain.”

Cue tumbleweeds, I mean complete silence and few bemused looks. After what seemed like ages, my Brother finally broke the silence with “That’s good to know mate.” Not the reaction he expected, I’m guessing, and so, wearing a look of bewilderment he retreated back to the bar.

Ever the considerate and protective Brother, Billy said “If he comes an’ says aught else about puffs, I’ll deck ‘im!” Bless!

I felt a bit sorry for him after that, only for a minute though. He was probably just looking for some pals for him and wifey to hang out with. I suppose a table with 4 blokes and a girl looked like a safe place to start.

The guy was last seen back at the bar consulting with wifey. “What did I say?” he was probably asking. Wifey should have been able to spare him the pain, she was after all, a “lady with nice nails” and ought to have been able to spot a couple of Gayers from that distance. Perhaps he’d upset her earlier and this was her revenge!