Notes by Nectar

Your destiny lies in your own hands

Wasted days and sleepless nights…

I was telling a friend of mine on Saturday night that I really can’t remember a time when I wasn’t tired. 

Over the last few weeks I’ve rarely slept before 1.30am – for no good reason. It’s not as though I’ve been out having a good time – I’ve been home, watching TV, reading, just not sleeping… and then struggling to get to work in the mornings. Forget about getting there on time, I’m talking about getting there at all. 

There have been a couple of Saturdays recently when I’ve come home and it’s just getting to daylight (OK, on those nights I *was* out having a good time) but I can’t sleep when it’s already light out there! I’ve taken to wearing an eye mask when I wake up at 5am on most mornings just to get me back to sleep again.

These late nights aren’t really helping at work. I had a conversation at work today – my colleague was talking to me – I wasn’t focusing on a word she said and I’m not even sure how I responded. Or if I responded. And don’t ask me what the conversation was about – I can’t remember. I’ll be making tea in the kitchen at work, suddenly remember I have to email someone and by the time I’m back at my desk, I’ve forgotten all about the email. It’s a little worrying. I think it might be time to start taking some gingko biloba. 

My mum’s had a jar of the stuff in the kitchen for the last five years (I’m pretty sure it’s past it’s use by date). The same jar. She says she keeps forgetting to take it. She *really* needs it. 

I need a holiday.

Or a week of sleep…
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Silent Sunday 4


Silent Sunday

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Your week ahead (4-10 July)

This week I chose the Legacy of the Divine Tarot to do the weekly readings. Enjoy! 




Ace of Coins – using material force, prospering, being practical and using common sense, proceeding with trust, 



5 of Cups – suffering a loss or being defeated, grieving or longing to be reunited with someone, being disappointed or believing you made the wrong choice, experiencing regret



Knight of Coins – being unwavering and stubborn, cautious and unadventurous, thorough or obsessive, realistic/pessimistic, hard-working and keeping your head down



King of Wands – being creative and inspired, forceful, charismatic and bold – make gestures with flair and take chances where the stakes are high



Queen of Swords – honesty, being astute, forthright and witty – don’t take things too seriously and have realistic expectations



7 of Cups – indulging in wishful thinking, having many options, eating/drinking/partying to excess



Page of Coins – act on your dreams, be practical and stop daydreaming, go out to meet success, enrich yourself, having faith in others



10 of Coins – feeling financially secure, look for solutions that will last – seek permanence, trust in the tried-and-tested – follow convention



6 of Swords – feeling blue or a little depressed, getting over a tough time or beginning to get your health back, experience a change of scene



The Tower – expect sudden change or upheaval, eruptions in anger, burst of insight or suddenly realising the truth – chaos and disorder



Queen of Wands – appealing and popular, loaded with enthusiasm, inner vibrancy, have faith in your abilities



5 of Coins – experiencing hard times and feeling insecure, feeling run down and tired, feeling excluded

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The long and the short of it…

I decided to go for the chop today:


Yes, it's probably the shortest it's been in a long time… but I like it!! 

I've been going to HW Hair in St John's Wood High Street for the last six months or so – and they're good. 

There are a few things that annoy me though (as always!) – before I started going here, I used to go to a hairdresser in Gloucester Road. Toni would colour my hair, wash it, cut and blowdry it in about 2 hours – and I used to think that was a long time. Toni left and I decided to find somewhere closer to home. 

Every time I've been to HW Hair, I spend 3 hours there. Initially, the person with whom I booked the appointment did my highlights, a second person did the rest of the colour, and a third person  washed my hair (and gave me a head massage long enough for my hairdresser to fit in another blowdry) and then the first hairdresser cut and blowdried it. Is that really necessary? 

I actually really don't mind who does what, but at the end of my appointment when I have to hand out the tips, how much am I tipping? And to whom?? It gets too complicated. Luckily today, I only had to deal with two people: one doing my colour (who also washed my hair) and another cutting and blowdrying it. And even though I didn't have any highlights done this time, I was still there for 3 hours.

I had several compliments this evening, but let's see what happens after I wash it and the curls return (and make it even shorter)! I suppose it's just for a few days – I'm having my Brazilian keratin treatment done next weekend. But more about that later…
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July – my tarot reading

I do a monthly tarot reading for myself using the Legacy of the Divine Tarot by Ciro Marchetti. 

The monthly spread I do has two rows. The top row contains one card (the overview of the month); the second row has four cards, one for each week of the month. Here are the cards I dealt for July. Lots of coins = lots of money coming (and going)!


Overview – Ace of Coins – using material force, prospering, being practical, proceeding with trust


Week 1 – King of Swords – intellectual, analytical, articulate, just, ethical


Week 2 – Death – ending, going through transition, eliminating excess, experiencing inexorable forces (eliminate excess = detox? Er. I don't think so)


Week 3 – 10 of Coins – enjoying affluence, seeking permanence, following convention


Week 4 – 5 of Coins – experiencing hard times, suffering ill health, being rejected (clearly the girls' trip to Barcelona is going to bankrupt me)


Do you do a monthly reading? What spread do you use? 

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The Spaniards Inn

In a couple of weeks, five of us girls are heading to Barcelona for a weekend to celebrate a friend’s 40th birthday. To be honest, I really didn’t think this would happen at all, given their husbands’ and kids’ schedules but it’s all been bought and paid for. We’re actually going!

We decided to meet last night to talk about the trip, what we wanted to do, where to go – we’re only there for two nights and it’s going to be difficult to do everything – eating, drinking, sightseeing, shopping, relaxing. Where do you start? We’re flying with Easyjet – none of us is happy with the baggage restrictions, so instead of taking just hand luggage we’ve decided to share a suitcase or two – that way if we do end up shopping (which I’m sure some of us will) we won’t have to worry about how to bring things back. But, I digress…

We decided to have dinner at The Spaniards Inn (isn’t that appropriate?). I’ve gone past it countless times in the last 25 years but had never actually been inside.


The Spaniards Inn, dating back to 1585, is one of the most famous pubs in the world. It’s located by Hampstead Heath and is popular with tourists and locals alike. The pub is quaint – with oak panels and lots of nooks and crannies. I can imagine the pub garden being full on a hot summer’s day! On a clear day you can apparently see all the way to Windsor Castle.

The pub also hosted many great literary figures – Keats, Shelley, Byron. It’s mentioned in Bram Stoker’s Dracula and also in Dickens’ Pickwick Papers (which I intend to read some day)… 

Across the road from the pub is the tollhouse on the Finchley boundary. Interestingly, the pub is in Barnet and the tollhouse is in Camden! 

The menu is traditional British pub food – sausages and mash, Shepherd’s pie, fish cakes, and so on – which I thought was just average. None of us was particularly wowed by the main courses, and the dessert menu didn’t appeal at all. 

But I’d definitely go back for a pint… and some ghost-hunting! Any building as old as this is bound to have a resident ghost or two – the cloaked figure of Dick Turpin is said to appear inside the pub (legend has it he was born at the pub; his ghost has also been seen on Hampstead Heath on a black horse) and horses have been heard galloping across the car park in the middle of the night. How exciting!! 
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Passenger (mis)treatment on London Transport

Almost two weeks ago, my mum had a horrible experience on the number 74 bus heading towards Baker Street. She was waiting for a bus at Park Lane – sometimes the traffic is so heavy that buses don’t always stop there unless someone is getting off – but she spotted the 74 and managed to stop it. As she got on, the bus driver muttered something which she ignored. Instead she thanked him for stopping.

As the bus headed down Gloucester Place, she pressed the bell. She wanted to get off the bus at Dorset Street as that’s the last stop on Gloucester Place before it turns on to Baker Street. At this point, she was on the bus with just another woman and a man who was sitting right at the back. The bus driver ignored the bell and moved into the far right lane. Once he was in the right lane, he stopped the bus, opened the door and told my mum to ‘Get out’. She said she wouldn’t – there was traffic coming in on the left and it wasn’t safe. He got out of his driver’s seat and told her and the other female passenger to get off the bus. As he approached them, he saw the male passenger sitting at the back watching what was happening. He promptly shut up, turned around and got back into his seat and continued driving to Baker Street Station.

When I got home from work, my mum told me what had happened. I was outraged – his threatening behaviour was completely unacceptable! We drafted a letter of complaint to London Transport and filled in the online complaint form – it was very detailed and fortunately Mum remembered what the driver looked like as he had a white plaster up one of his nostrils! Also, because he’d left his seat, she knew exactly how tall he was. As I pressed the ‘send’ button, I wondered if we’d ever hear back from them.

Three days ago, Mum received an email from someone at London Transport saying that they were shocked at the driver’s behaviour, that it was a serious incident, and that they’d managed to identify him and dealt with him appropriately. I don’t know what that means – they said that because it was a personnel matter it was confidential. But at least they responded – and sooner than we thought they would.

If you ever experience similar incidents on the bus or Tube, I’d strongly advise you to complain. The more people there are that complain, the sooner something will be done about it. There’s no point suffering in silence!

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What do I have to say??

A couple of weeks ago my friend Kiran wrote a post on her blog about my sister and I, and our blogs.


(Image from Virtual School Meanderings)

She mentioned that a year (and a bit) after starting her blog, she struggles to find things to write about. Well, it's been four weeks for me and I'm already struggling! 

What do people write about?? 

The burst water main on Baker Street on my way to work this morning which held up the traffic? No, I'd start ranting about the state of London these days – and what *is* with all the roadworks everywhere?? 

Work? No, I couldn't bring myself to write about it. 

People I know? No, not a good idea – I'd be accused of gossiping and no longer be known as 'The Vault'. 

Books? Concerts? Movies? Plays? Alex O'Loughlin? Hmm, there's a thought… Hmmm… 

Now, where was I…?

I sometimes wonder whether there's an original idea anywhere in my head… 
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I had a dream…

Isn’t it funny how some dreams stay with you long after you’ve woken up and others are so elusive you can’t for the life of you remember what they were?

A couple of nights ago, I dreamed I was wanted for murder. I don’t know who I was supposed to have killed, or why – I just knew that I didn’t want to get caught (I think I was innocent). I had been talking to a friend of mine who told me what to look out for when the police were on to you. I don’t know who this person was, or how he knew such things, but in my dream I was paying close attention to what he was saying… Sure enough, the next day I was going to the gym (this is when I knew it was a dream as I’m not a member of any gym) and I noticed all the things he told me to look out for… The garbage men talking into their wrists, someone taking a picture of me (or was it the big red bus behind me)… I was completely paranoid. I turned a corner and slipped into an alley – for some reason, nobody figured out I was there and I was watching the chaos that ensued when the police realised they’d lost track of me. They did eventually catch me, and it turned out that they wanted me because they were trying to protect me and trap someone else (I don’t know – it was all very complicated this dream of mine). Anyway, I can’t seem to shake this dream – and I think it all came about because I’d been watching Enemy of the State that evening or reading The Leopard!

On the other hand, there is one dream (or rather a memory of the dream) that still eludes me… About 10 years ago I woke up in the middle of the night thinking the dream I’d just had would be a genius plot for a novel and that I’d write it all down in the morning. I fell asleep again immediately. Morning came and I just couldn’t remember what the dream was, except that it would have been a great book. Ever since then this dream has haunted me and I always make sure I have a pen and paper at my bedside, or a voice recorder! Sadly that dream has never resurfaced, but then one never knows, does one?
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Silent Sunday 3




Silent Sunday


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