"Let's Get Some Ink On You".
It took me about 10 years to finally pluck up the courage to get a tattoo done. I had my first one, a small Japanese character (for love, everybody say ahh!!) on my right arm. Whilst under the needle Frank informed me that it wouldn't be my last one. I kind of poo-pooed that statement, but within two months I was having a second small tat done on my keft arm, this time some kind of Tahitian symbol.
I thought that would be it. So for the next five years of so I left it. Then just before my 40th birthday I decided I wanted another one. This time however I wanted something a bit bigger. The idea struck me that it might be quite cool to have my birth date tattooed on my back, in case I couldn't get in to nightclubs or pubs, I could then whip me shirt off and point to it and they'd let me in. Not really!
I went along to Shamanic Body Art (click on the link under other favourite sites) and booked up. I was going to have it done at the base of my back but my impairment means that my hips are a bit skew whiff so I was advised to have it done at the top of my back across the shoulders.
When I had the work done on my arms it really wasn't that painful. There was a slight burning sensation and that is about it. This time however it was quite sore at times. I have a photograph on my phone taken just after the tattoo was finished and it looks really sore, like I'd been in the sun for far too long. The tattoo was designed and inked by the very talented Giselle at Shamanic and as I hope you can see from the picture it is very delicately shaded.
You maybe aware, if you've read my blog or my entries on the BBC Ouch messageboard my devotion to William Horwood's book Skallagrigg. It is a wonderful book and if you are lucky enough to have read this masterpiece you'll have some understanding what the 'Skallagrigg' means to the chief protagonists.
I'd toyed with the idea of having a Skallagrigg tattoo somewhere but I wasn't quite sure where to get it done. I thought having it over my heart, but then again...
I finally decided to have my leg done. My left peg is encased in a leg brace so that was out, so that left the right one. I went along to Shamanic Body Art again and booked up with Giselle.
When I arrived there on Saturday I was shown the design that Giselle had drawn up and asked where on my my leg I was going to get inked, when I told her it was my calf she said 'You're brave'. When Tattooists say that to you, you start to worry that it may just smart a bit. There was a big burly skinhead having his calf done as I walked in and he was grimacing quite a lot.
It actually wasn't that bad. The bottom part near the ankle, which I imagined would be the worst bit didn't hurt at all but the skin nearest the back of the knee did hurt but it wasn't unbearable. I do have a high pain threshold though which maybe why I was such a big brave soldier.
These pictures were kindly taken by Lady Bracknell's Secretary Companion during my recent visit. I'd like to point out that I was fully clothed at all times despite begging from LBSC.
Special thanks go to Giselle at Shamanic for the design and the fabulous inking. I'll be back.