I had an extraordinarily active weekend, which, as you will read, did not end so well. On Saturday the Food Festival came to Alnwick. I went to the one in Berwick last month and while this one was smaller AND busier, it was still worth the 3 minutes it took me to walk there. I stocked up on my beloved (non-alcoholic) ginger wine. Also I bought some heather. And an orchid. I've long suspected that orchids are evil but am not sure why, so decided to get over it and just buy the pretty flower. HANG ON WAIT I HAVE HAD TERRIBLE LUCK SINCE THEN I WAS RIGHT ALL ALONG. Oh and on Friday I was feeling grumpy, so I bought some kind of evergreen hebe and felt happy again. I have a problem.
Yesterday I took place in the Workplace Challenge in Cramlington along with several trolleagues. IT WAS FUN although I don't anticipate getting up at 7am every Sunday to do this 'sport' everyone keeps talking about. We did: the ergo challenge (basically going on a rowing machine, and the possible cause of the later woe), cricket (which I enjoyed more than I expected), pilates (unexpectedly tiring, but alas, I got a fit of the giggles due to a group of lads just not taking it seriously and answering commands like 'put your chin on the floor' with 'which chin?'), ARCHERY (I got a business card from the archers, and once my current Malady is over, will email them with a view to taking up archery once more), dodgeball (fun but really, really aggressive and competitive), orienteering (didn't enjoy too much because running powers were limited by my Malady), CLIMBING (FUN although I still prefer bouldering, just), and badminton (which I was pretty awful at although by this point, I was so tired I could see time). Our team did not win, we came 6th out of about 11. But it was still a fun day out and an excellent justification for eating pie and chips for my tea.
Alas, my joy did not last. Eagle-eyed readers may remember my spine malady from last month. IT HAPPENED AGAIN. The pain this time hasn't been quite so intense; I slept reasonably well last night. It was just that the pain progressed and increased all day, and try as I might, I couldn't get into a comfortable sitting position. Then my trolleagues wisely pointed out that I was all lopsided:

They further noted that I should get to the doctor. After trying (fairly valiantly, I thought) to concentrate on translation rather than the agony in my back for eight whole hours, I trolled off to the local walk-in centre (where I went after the Blood Pressure incident!). I waited an hour for a doctor who prodded my back and told me to try and stand straight. This proved impossible, and by way of response, I fainted. On coming round, I noted that the doctor was nowhere to be seen, and the nurses were kindly giving me water and painkillers. I have taken a couple of said painkillers (I'd already taken Ibuprofen but I think these are more hardcore) and things feel a bit better already. HURRAH. Nothing like a biannual trip to the emergency healthcare team to keep my loved ones on their toes (oh yeah lol I forgot I broke my toe last April). I'm always left feeling embarrassed that it's something fairly minor: a broken toe, a pulled back muscle, or nothing at all in the case of the blood pressure incident. I am not taking this as a challenge to do something more impressive to myself, though.
P.S: at the food festival they were giving away FREE POTATOES so if I become too spine-infested to leave the house, I shall be fine for several days surviving on potatoes, much like my ancestors.
P.P.S: Oooh I have a leek too, I wonder what I could do with leek and potatoes?
P.P.P.S: OK I will shut up now. I'm blaming the painkillers.
P.P.P.P.S: I've just remembered that in the waiting room there was A BABY