Whilst thinking about Pedro and I last night, I came to realise that although personality and ideals wise we are rather similar (a bit silly, keen on justice to those who do each other wrong, and haters of traffic) when it comes to hobbies and interests we could not be more different.
As I mentioned briefly in yesterday’s blog I spend a lot of my spare time with a group called LIDOS (www.lidos.co.uk). They are an amateur dramatic society – for those who don’t know, this means that a few times a year they rehearse for, and then perform an amazing show, usually musical theatre, which involves singing, dancing and acting all combined together in one lovely talented clump.
I must clarify – I cannot dance. I know this because when I perform with LIDOS in a big dance number they kindly put me at the back and ask me to sing loudly. They are agonisingly patient when I try to learn even the most basic steps, and often give me compliments like ‘You do have a lovely smile’ when I am rocking out my best moves. I must clarify – I also cannot act. Well, not seriously. Not proper make-people-cry acting. However I can do what they call a ‘character’ part. This involves being over the top and silly and trying to make people laugh – basically how I spend my life.
Now singing – singing I love. I should explain, I am a classically trained musician, with a degree and everything. This does not in any way make me a ‘singer’. However – I sing every single day. I sing in the car (greatly disturbing those in traffic jams around me as I bust out some Beyonce with rather vigorous yet stylish air grabs – even more embarrassing in summer when I have my windows wound down). I sing in the corridors at work terrifying my colleagues and students alike (I have taken to singing ‘happy’ songs as I greet my students into the classroom – this goes down a treat first thing on Monday morning). I sing when I feel socially awkward – which makes the situation even MORE awkward. Being classically trained you would think means I have incredibly high-brow and cultured taste when it comes to my singing material. But nothing makes me happier than driving out my colleagues from our staff workroom in the morning by cracking out a bit of ‘Say You’ll Be There’ by the Spice Girls, or reliving the first record I ever bought ‘Until the time is through’ by Five (yes, really!)
Anyhoo, back to LIDOS. The thing I’ve been doing most with LIDOS over the last couple of years is musically directing, or MD-ing for short. This is where you teach the songs and music, get the band together, and then conduct the show. This is a brilliant thing to do, as it really tests your musical ability! I get to work with the maddest, most talented, most fun group of people ever. Our next show is Seussical the Musical which is the stories of Dr Seuss combined and set to music – if you’re at all curious to see what this would be like watch the clip below:
Another hobby I have started recently is this blog. I was very nervous when I started as I haven’t written anything since I was a child. I used to love writing stories and doing creative writing in lessons, covering pages and pages with cringe worthy over-emotional rubbish (I feel particularly embarrassed about a history project where we had to create a leaflet about the Black Death. I produced a small novel that may have been historically accurate but would have made even Jane Austen blush in its simpering romanticism). However after seeing my good friend Emma’s fantastic blog about family life on Jersey (www.channelislandsblog.wordpress.com) I felt inspired to give it a go. Despite Pedro’s occasional snide comment ‘Oh, I suppose this is going to go in your blog’, I think he is secretly pleased that I am documenting our important moments in an attempting-to-be-humorous way.
Pedro’s hobbies are a different kettle of fish altogether. One of his hobbies is gaming. He finds battling against enemies in full blown war with his friends incredibly relaxing on an evening. He even has a gaming chair (which I feel would be better with beer fridges in the armrests). He has tried to gently involve me in this bizarre world a couple of times. We had a go at playing Civilisation 5 (‘Civ’ to those in the know) ‘Gods and Kings’. It was hard work. I didn’t know what the buttons meant. People kept trying to go to war with me. I had to over-throw other cities. Pedro found my lack of basic gaming knowledge baffling and quite possibly frustrating, but was (annoyingly) patient and kind about it. After a couple of hours I had to stop as it wore me out. I have to say, despite my moaning, I would definitely try it again. Working as a team with Pedro to conquer the world (literally) was very fun.
Another of his hobbies is historical re-enactment. Pedro loves nothing more than battling in his spare time (there’s a bit of a worrying trend here isn’t there?!). I am yet to see Pedro in action at one of his historical re-enactments but from how he describes it, it sounds like great fun – lots of boozing and chatting in tents around a fire with a couple of battles thrown in for good measure. Pedro has even suggested I join his regiment as a drummer – I said would consider this, but only if I could be addressed as ‘Captain Drum.’ This is to prevent me from being lonely when he is away for a weekend – I definitely feel a blog post entitled ‘The Sealed Knot Widow’ coming on.
Although our interests are different, I do feel that we are supportive of each other, and have a ‘never say never’ attitude to trying them out. What do you think – is it a good idea to share each others’ hobbies?