Monday, 25 November 2013

A farewell to art

I'm a bit sad as I cleared my art studio over the weekend. I've decided to give it up as I've not got as much time to go there as I once had and, besides, the building is likely to be knocked down very soon as the massive tide of development that's sweeping out from central London hits it. You wouldn't believe how much building there is going on. If you're a crane builder you must be cashing in big time.

Anyway, I will still paint at home and do a few more portraits of TGirls. My plans for an exhibition of such pictures has never really got off the ground yet, but who knows.

It's sad to leave, but there you go. The art world is very accepting of people who are a bit different like me, so it's been a good experience. I may find somewhere else but for now I need to concentrate on other things, like work that pays!

Old-fashioned selfie
Sue x

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Day of Remembrance

Today is Transgender Day of Remembrance.

The rate of suicide among transgender people is higher than average and the number of trans people who are victims of murder is believed to be well above average also.

I won't comment further but just mark today's date as one of reflection. On a personal note I would like to remember in particular Chrisie Edkins.

Sue x

Friday, 15 November 2013

Beer and birds eye views

This blog has just had over 20,000 page views. Wow! thanks for reading. I’m still writing up what happened at the TGirl bar but I thought I’d just mention in the meantime a visit last weekend by one of my best pals, Maddy Watson, who is best known as one of the bossladies of the Nottingham Invasion. I’d invited her ages ago and she finally managed to visit.

Our big day out was Saturday when I took her by train and Underground to the West End. It was her first foray onto public transport, which is always a frightening prospect, but it has to be done. Our journey was uneventful, as ever. A nice coffee at Vergnano’s to wake us up after our heavy dinner at home the previous night and we made our way slowly to Belgo Centraal. Maddy likes her beer, you see, and where better to try excellent beers than a Belgian restaurant, especially one where the waiting staff are dressed like Trappist monks! Our waitress, Roxane, was excellent and recommended some really good beers to go with our food. We were joined by Helena and Tanya and we managed to sample eight different beers between the four of us. Very enjoyable, as you can see.

Belgo's with Tanya, Helena and Maddy.

A stroll round Covent Garden (which includes a compulsory visit to the Kurt Geiger store with its luscious red sofas and mirrored walls) and we stopped in a nice little pub, Nell of Old Drury, just opposite the Theatre Royal. 

Covent Garden: one of my favourite places.

We looked at the lights of London from Waterloo Bridge and then Maddy had the idea of going on the London Eye. I went on it when it first opened in 2000 (when it was called the Millennium Wheel) but I haven’t been on it since, and that was during the daytime whereas now it was dark. The morning rain had washed the sky clear and you could see everything. It was nice to chat to a couple of young women in the queue in front of us and nobody took the least bit of interest in two TGirls in the pod, so we snapped away at the view.

We had agreed to meet Joanne later that evening but we stopped off at another favourite pub, the Ship & Shovell in Craven Passage near Charing Cross Station. The pub is split between the two sides of the passage and the smaller, snugger part is my favourite. We ate dinner at the London Chinatown restaurant and joined Joanne at her workplace, the Cambridge, right in the heart of London. All in all, a very good day.

I was sorry to say goodbye to Maddy on Sunday. She’s one of the girls from the Class of 2010 whom I met when I first started going out and we’ve had a load of fun and laughs together. I even painted her portrait for my series of paintings of trans people. I really enjoy taking friends round London and am looking forward to my next guest. I must try to get back to the Nottingham Invasion soon which has been an amazing success thanks to her promotion and that of her partner in fabulousness, Sam.

Sue x

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Surgical update - positive news

Just a very quick post for all those who followed my news on my poor friend who suffered a considerable loss of tissue and a severe abdominal infection following her gender surgery.

She diligently kept to her dilating and other regimes and now after three months she says her surgeon is impressed with her recovery and the general state of affairs. She is due back at work in four weeks but still finds it difficult to bend. I'm pleased to say she's going for very long daily walks. Several miles a day, in fact. When I saw her two weeks after her op she could just about stand up and hobble a bit, whereas most of her fellow operatees (operatives?) were merrily charging around the hospital after just a few days (OK, I exaggerate, but they were mobile). So it seems that all is well, largely thanks to her diligence in looking after herself (and with help from her family, colleagues and friends).

She tells me she is now ready to join a regular dating site, and I hope that at last she will find a cute guy who will genuinely care about her.

Sue x

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Evenings in

The clocks have gone back and the nights are getting darker. I can't say I particularly like the dying of the year as the sun fades away and the leaves drop and the cold creeps in. However, there are compensations.

I'll be posting about the TGirl bar soon when more pictures are available. But till then, draw a chair up by the fireside and I'll pour you a glass of something warming. I quite like evenings in with my girlfriends when you just don't fancy heading out into the cold and the dark. This afternoon, just as dusk was falling, my friend Gillian came round. I hadn't seen her for a while and we had a bit of catching up to do. Coffee and a natter and a game of go (I hadn't really played it since I was a kid but she's a champion). A good way to spend three hours after work.

I'm not sure if I'll join the girls heading out to Covent Garden tomorrow. I confess I feel sated after my five day trannathon last week so today's evening will compensate for a day at home tomorrow.

Sue x