Saturday, September 30, 2006

Brief Blog - V. Busy

Still quite busy but happily so. Shop, collect meat from butcher - wrap, put away in freezer. Pack away other shopping - abit like provisioning a ship. But we don't seem to do it that often. Certainly not more than three times a week.

Then cooked bolognese sauce for evening meal.

Collected Hannah from Burton Joyce for her sleepover. Not sure who is more excited - Hannah or her Grandma?

Picture 1 is a close-up of another of David and Helen's 'Heavenly Blue' With the sun shining though them they really look uncanny.

These artichokes are looking very distinguished at the moment and are rewarding us for not chopping them off. It's a matter of taste of course, but they make me think "Where is Van Gogh when you need him?" You will just have to imagine the yellow!

We returned to Brinsley via the ford and drove through it fairly fast which Hannah thought was great fun. There were no other vehicles or people around so we didn't qualify for an ASBO.

The 'spagbol' was a success and Hannah is now so grown-up she has her spaghetti left long. Obviously more grown-up than Grandad who cuts his into manageable pieces - otherwise he finishes up with it all over the place. Shirt, beard, trousers etc.

Going to leave it there. Busy day again tomorrow..............

Friday, September 29, 2006

Torrential Rain - Still Playing with Fujitsu

Picture 1 is taken from the car which was parked roughly in the middle of our ford (on Beanford Lane, Oxton) because the sun shining through the foliage and the look of the water appealed to me. The modern trend for 'water-photographs' seems to involve a long exposure which makes moving water look like candyfloss. The effect appals me. I want water to look like water not wool and if I can see individual droplets, so much the better. When I was a boy and was allowed to borrow the family camera (a folding Kodak) I took a similar photograph of the upper reaches of the Henmore Brook at Ashbourne. Black & White of course, but I was so proud of the light showing through the leaves and the appearance of the brook. My Dad said it was 'alright' which was praise indeed.

Picture 2 is of David and Helen's Morning Glory (Ipomea) 'Heavenly Blue' with the sun shining through it to the extent that it almost looks as if it has been fitted with a light-bulb. They have several plants, front and rear, and all have done very well. Like Helen's Runner Beans which she was worried about at the beginning of the year because they looked a little weak and straggly. I reassured her that plants where the sought-after product is the seeds, often seem to do better if a little judicious underfeeding etc., is practised. They seem to think 'Oh Hoh - things not looking too good, better produce lots of seeds'. Just a theory.

When we went to see them we took the girls a garden-bird poster that had arrived in the Daily Mail. It was colourful and attractive and the very next morning they had been out in the garden bird-spotting. Hope we don't turn them into twitchers.

It was good that Madeline (our meterological correspondent) was able to name the phenomena of the iridescent clouds. The links she posted are well worth a look, particularly the second one, the illustration for which is truly beautiful. Our Brinsley iridescent clouds are obviously no match for those in Western Argentina - but I bet our Morrisons is better.

Jill our erstwhile 'baltic correspondent' has haired off on another mission, to Malta this time and I feel sure that 'words and pictures' will arrive in due course.

More stuff installed on my Fujitsu. Things like CCleaner, Stickies, Macfee Site Adisor, which I consider essential, and a Spy Sweeper which came with it................

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Hello Folks - Back On Air

Very pleased to be back and it will need several 'blogs' to bring everyone up-to-date. The details would be boring but the hard drive on the old lappy finally gave up and this is posted via my new Fujitsu notebook. Don't understand all the technical stuff but suffice it to say that 'it goes like a rat up a drain pipe'. It has taken me 4 hours to install all my toolbars, AVG, Firefox, Picasa et al. The pictures uploaded without pain and the old problems might have been the kit rather than 'blogger'. I've now got AVG instead of Norton (to which I shall give a wide-berth from now on).

There was a prob. retrieving my data and I wish I had followed Ray's advice re 'Mozy' because, although I've safely got my old My Pictures, and My Documents, it is going to take ages to download them all and I might just leave them on disc, knowing they are available if necessary. Family photos and things were on Picasa WebAlbums anyway and I've checked that I can access them. Similarly, it was a great relief to be able to work out how to open my Blog Dashboard and create a new post.

We are not lucky enough to have a 'meteorological correspondent who can explain picture 1. These little bits in the sky just before sunset have always fascinated me (the sun is out-of-frame left). They are not quite rainbows and there must be a name for them.

Picture 2 is a special request from Miles who wanted to see his train-set on the Blog. So here it is and I am sure he will be pleased with it. Steve took the photo on the Nikon, to save me from struggling with the stairs.

Thanks to Bungus for 'nipping into the station' to post a holding message. It is just a relief that he didn't find it necessary to make it play sombre music.

Bye for now.................

Thursday, September 21, 2006

James Turrell - Light Installations

After this I really will leave Yorkshire Sculpture Park I promise. I must be boring the pants off some readers. The James Turrell light-installations have already been mentioned but this one, The Deer Shelter, is a permanent fixture in a building in the park. There is a square hole in the roof through which one gazes at the sky. The white square on the right is the sunlight shining through onto the side wall.

This Bungus picture makes the set-up clearer because he found that by lying flat on his back in the far corner of the room he could include this glimpse of a tree.

I decided against trying it because once down I would have had a job getting up again.

On the first day the Deer Shelter had little appeal because the sky was uniformly grey. And, would you believe, on the second day the sky was uniformly blue. There were little clouds, but miles away and not moving. We had hoped to sit there, because it is a very restful and contemplative experience, and wait until a cheery little white cloud drifted slowly across the space. But it was not to be, although a sky-lover like myself could have sat there for hours just checking on the intensity of the blue. Madeline is a fellow sky-lover and she would have appreciated the experience.

Today is a normal Burton Joyce day for Y and my only input has been her delivery to the tram and collecting her just after 6pm. We are having a simple jacket-potato and salad for main meal because it really is quite warm. In fact very warm - just checked with Google and it's 28C in Nottingham. Ray is helping me sort my memory out with Crucial because when I tried it I could get so far and then got 'unable to........' messages. They are the bane of computer beginners' lives.

Y came back with some super photos from Palmers Green and I printed her some yesterday. That little Casio is still pretty good because in those of Elli in her shool-dress before that all important first day, you can see the tiny blue/white check very clearly.

Back to flowers, skies, ill-health and menus from tomorrow - honest!

That will have to wait because Radiogandy will be 'off-air' for a few days. Lappy going in for memory upgrade..............

Ta Ta!!.....................

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Almost the end of the YSP pictures

I have decided to accept advice (see previous comments) and publish this. As photography was banned in the Longside Gallery, and they had approved the picture for my own personal use, it concerned me that someone with less scruples might purloin it and use it for gain. But, as was astutely pointed out by Bungus, if someone wanted to do that they could simply do what I did and photograph it from outside. This Reclining Youth with a Split Apple is larger than life size and really needs to be seen. All Kenny Hunter's figures from contemporary life are painstakingly made using traditional sculptural methods. The reflections in the glass window, of the grass and trees and fields behind almost add a dimension (in the opinion of Jan Wells, the Press and Marketing Manager at YSP). One can't quite see the split apple - he has half in each hand - but I rate the figure as the equal of any classical sculpture. In fact better than most !

Rather than push my luck with pictures (the uploading thereof) today I have decided to publish just the one. Perhaps I have been overloading poor old 'blogger'. And I am pleased that those already published have given people pleasure.

The weather is much cooler and there is a strong breeze. We have lots of roses which have drawn their second wind so to speak and the garden is quite full of colour. When I went out to the bin last night I thought that it won't be long until we have a frost - traditional of course for Goose Fair early next month. Next computer job is to sort out via Crucial what additional memory I can fit and then get it fitted. Next clearing up job is to get a Scrap Man to give me a price for all the aluminium from the caravan, which at the moment is a nuisance in the garage.


Tuesday, September 19, 2006

A few more YSP pictures

I have uploaded this head by Dame Elisabeth Frink on the right-hand side deliberately. It seemed better composition-wise, to have the piece looking towards the text rather than having turned his back on it.

Not everyone is such a Frink fan but the first one I saw was, I think, called Bullet and I guess I saw it in the National Gallery in the 1960s. It was so beautiful and powerful that I was an immediate convert. If I won the 'Lottery' I would buy a Frink straightaway. But it is unlikely because I don't do the lottery.

In my online camera magazine the picture won praise, but someone said they didn't like the highlights. It is a valid point. But I wanted to bring out in a two-dimensional representation that it IS a bronze and not a drawing

On the left is one of the pieces on display in the corridor of the Visitors' Centre and makes a delightful Bungus picture, particularly so through glass.

The artist had a display cabinet devoted to her work which is created from driftwood and found objects. They were all beautiful and expensive. But that's the way of the world I suppose. William Morris's dictum was that you should have nothing in your house unless it is beautiful or useful - preferably both.

The final picture today is by Glaswegian Sculptor Kenny Hunter and his exhibition is at the Longside Gallery which is miles away across the valley. My 'blue-badge' allowed me drive there and it was well worth it. There is a shuttle-bus for visitors but the helpful YSP staff directed us in the car. Some of Hunter's work is abstract/modern and some is realistic. This lamb for instance is outside the gallery and looks back across the valley to the YSP buildings and college. I infinitely prefer it to 'Monarch of The Glen', which, apart from being chocolate-boxy has always seemed to me to have fascist overtones. Hunter's Lamb is the absolute opposite and I wouldn't be at all surprised if the artist intended that connection to be made. Photography inside the gallery was forbidden but a super piece called 'Reclining Youth with a Split Apple' so took my fancy that I photographed it from outside with a most pleasing result. Due to the 'ban' I emailled YSP and attached a copy of the photograph which they thought was lovely and the reflections in the glass 'added a new dimension'. They thought that, provided I wasn't going to sell it or anything it was OK. Can't make my mind up whether to Blog it or not.............

Just spoken to David and although he obviously still has a lot of pain he doesn't complain and sounds quite perky. When he came back from the Hospital, Brooke was in the kitchen with her head down; when asked what was the matter? she said tearfully "I don't know if I can give my Daddy a snuggle" bless her. Sky was also a little tearful but both have been so helpful at picking things up etc. Poor Helen must be getting tired out with all the driving to do and all the other things in the house to do. But she is such a resourceful and hard-working girl, she will manage one way or another.

The picture problem was eventually solved by uploading the pictures to Walagata (the image hosting site) and then using the URL method of putting them in the Blog. Don't ask why a straightforward download doesn't work. 'Cos I don' know.

That's all for today folks...............

Monday, September 18, 2006

Yorkshire Sculpture Park mostly

Bob's and my weekend jaunt to the Sculpture Park worked out excellently. Apart from minor glitches like 'which side of the motorway is our Travelodge on?' National Trust chairman Peter would tell you that that was eminently forseeable. He has named me 'Graham The Navigator' and it isn't due to ageing - I was just as bad when I was travelling about the country in my job. I once hired a taxi to drive from one city-location to another while I followed in my car. Such are the benefits of being on expenses. No matter. We had a great time - a veritable photo-fest. And so much stimulating art to savour.

The working title for this picture is 'Bungus confronts Henry Moore'

The Travelodge was fine, at the rear of a Moto services. Basic, clean, well-equipped and Bob got us a great bargain with a room-rate of £25. The full rate is £49. and they managed to put us in adjoining rooms on the ground floor. All Travelodges apparently are either at airports or motorway service areas and this one was really handy for where we needed to be. We ate there a couple of times, and the breakfast bacon-sandwiches were in fact, very good.

YSB itself is simplicity itself to find. Bob was in charge of 'route' and even I didn't get lost on the way there. We arrived within minutes of our ETA and they had saved me an electric scooter which was very useful on the first day. There was plenty to occupy us for two days. On the second day I took my time, and managed to walk (with frequent stops) - which wasn't a problem 'cos there was so much to look at and enjoy. We were both tired by the end of each day, but what the hell?

This Barbara Hepworth was amazing (one of several of hers) and one really needs the surroundings to appreciate work like this. And to be able to walk up close, around, and then back abit. The whole park is 500acres of mixed parkland, hillside and woodland plus of course a lake - but I didn't get that far. We allowed 2 days and didn't see everything by any means. The light-installations in the underground gallery were stimulating. Until now I have only seen such things on the TV when one has won an award but, in real life, these were so good. It is too difficult to describe them - they need seeing; it's as simple as that.

Not every single exhibit appealed to my taste but this Henry Moore 'reclining figure' certainly did. To savour the piece, one has to see it in situ, gazing over the valley towards the distant hillside - the figure that is, not the viewer. Great art is so memorable. The number of children with their parents, was surprising. And they were happy and contented. Not fractious and bored as you would half expect. But they can run about and touch things and explore. Perhaps art-loving parents rear well-behaved kids. Now, there's a topic for a doctorate!

My new Nikon was a joy and I am delighted with the quality of the images. And they were taken on 'auto-everything'. The more demanding bits will follow in due course, but there are so many buttons and the manual is necessary for me to understand each one. Y and I have been in our regular telephone contact and she reports having a most enjoyable time. She will be tired (but happy) when she returns and I am looking forward to seeing her Casio pictures' some of which will be of an MA art exhibition by the husband of one of Debra's friends.

Just a few more piccies of YSB tomorrow and then back to normal..............

Friday, September 15, 2006

A Rest Day - Sort of

Pinker pinks, redder reds and much crisper definition. The latter quality may not be immediately apparent from these pictures because to persuade them to upload it was necessary to lower the pixel count again. It is much easier to ask Picasa to 'resize' them rather than to keep changing the quality setting on the camera.

We've had a restful Rest Day and apart from nipping up to Eastwood Library to return overdue books and visit the Hospice Book Shop we've just been quiet. It was a Y day meals-wise and we thoroughly enjoyed our food. I won't bore Tracy by 'blogging' the menus though.

David managed some sleep and Y said he would probably appreciate a rest rather than us dashing over and tiring him out. I'm sure she is right. Had a good chat to him on the phone and confirmed that, unfortunately, he won't be recovered enough for Y's birthday "White Water Rafting". Seriously, it is something she has always wanted to do and she has nearly a full raft of 8. My role is limited to 'official photographer' - thank God.

I continued to learn more about my new 'boy's toy' and managed to find on the net a 30 page tutorial which will keep me busy. My feeling is that I shall be able to cope, at a basic level at least, with some of the photo-opportunities at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park where Bob and I are due to arrive tomorrow lunchtime. We plan to go back for a second day on Sunday and from all the info. there seems plenty ro retain our interest.

It follows that Radiogandy will be 'off air' for a day or two. So my absence should not cause any apprehension amongst readers that The City Hospital has demanded my presence again. No blood-test till Tuesday anyway - which is damned convenient. An email from Jill arrived for Y who whipped off a reply in seconds.!


Thursday, September 14, 2006

Nikon Pictures - David's Collar Bone

This is just a stormy sky about lunchtime and not important. But David rang and the poor lad has had a fall from his bike. A contributory factor apparently was one those blasted road-humps on the way to School yesterday. He has broken his collar bone in two places and went to Casualty last night and to the Fracture Clinic this morning where they have put his arm in a sling. But the broken bits are just 'sloshing about' he says. It will take about 6 weeks to heal and he can't drive or anything. We will go over and offer comfort as soon as poss. but he assures me that he is OK.

After the stormy sky we had thunder. It sounded like it did the other night - as if someone was trying to get in through the front door. Must be the prevailing wind. And then we had the rain.

And then the rain stopped and we had this lovely afternoon, even if everything was soaking. Y says that it rained very heavily at Burton Joyce too, at around the same time. Dropping her at the Tram and then picking her up this evening worked well again and we both enjoyed our Chicken salad. We both love the wild rocket which still seems to be 'in' - it is so peppery and refreshing.

These pictures by the way are the first with my new camera. It is a super piece of equipment but I haven't even reached first base yet. A lovely lens and the colours, particularly the reds (which weren't good on the Casio) and in fact the whole tonal range. I've already made one discovery - it produces pictures whose pixel count is far too high for the Blog (3500x2500 roughly) and to get them to load I have had to reduce them. It should produce great prints, but I so rarely print these days. A trawl through the handbook to discover how to reduce it, is called for.

Ah well. Hope D has a reasonable night. Must be difficult to get comfortable.....

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Nottingham Trip - Dead Man's Chest

A real escapists' morning out in the big city. We decided to go and see The Pirates of the Caribbean - Dead Man's Chest. Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightly and lots of other famous faces. Johnny Depp was fabulous and although one might not think so, he is in fact an extremely good actor. We saw him as J. M. Barrie in 'Finding Neverland' and were impressed. such a different role from Captain Jack Sparrow. Orlando Bloom was OK without being exceptional and Keira Knightly did a good 'pout'. She was actually very good as well as being beautiful, and again, such a different role from 'Pride and Prejudice'. I had a little difficulty following the story but, as one critic said "What story ?" A jolly good romp and scary in places. One scene made Y nearly jump out of her seat - it was like Magwitch appearing from behind the gravestone.

Finally weakening over the camera issue, I strode purposefully into Jessops and bought a Nikon D80 Digital SLR. I had to take the Paymaster General with me though, because I can never remember the PIN number for my Mastercard. So far I've taken the camera out of its packaging, charged the battery and tried to work out where everything is. It took me nearly 2 years to get to grips with my Casio Compact - I shudder to think how long this one will take. Be good fun though. A voyage of discovery. Pete knew the Elvis title and Y remembered it too. It was Just Can't help believin and the word wasn't dove it was glove.

The pictures at the top probably won't magnify well because they aren't many pixels and came from Google Images.

Better than nothing though......................

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Trip to Arnold - another lovely day

Obviously the misty mornings appeal to spiders too! And they quite like the old artichoke heads but what on earth do they expect to catch during the night and the early morning? But I'm not a spider and they doubtless know spider-business best. Also I wish I could remember the title of the Elvis track which contains the words 'a trace of misty morning' and 'like a dove.........' I bet if Ray happens to read this he will know. I've never known him stumped for song titles much more obscure than this.

This is Iron Bridge again and the swans on the Severn were most attractive. There won't be any details left in the plumage because, if I had exposed for the swans the surrounding foliage would have been black. The view is from the side of the only museum we had time to visit and, as I said yesterday, there is so much to see we have definitely promised ourselves a re-visit. Maybe a night or two B&B even though the rates, as I suppose you would expect, are extortionate.

The last picture is from almost the same spot looking in the opposite direction up The Severn towards the coal-fired power-station. Be reassured that the stuff emitting from the cooling towers is water vapour and not coal smoke. Their reflection in the water seems quite attractive. And again my trusty Casio has managed to retain detail in the sky without completely obscuring the foliage.

That is about it for our National Trust Day and we thoroughly enjoyed it.

Today we nipped over to Arnold to see Joan for lunch and to have a browse through bookshops, charity shops, W. H. Smiths etc., and of course Wilko. Every town should have a Wilko - it should be legislated for in Town Planning regulations. We needed Astonish (recommended by Sandra for cleaning aluminium cookware) and of course, we found it - together with clear plastic A4 wallets, brown envelopes and other things which I can't remember.

We took Joan to The Tree Tops for lunch because I think we all prefer it the The Travellers' Rest. Won't bore you with the details except that I had liver & onions which I love and Y hates so we never have it at home.....................

Monday, September 11, 2006

Misty Morning - Iron Bridge - Attingham

It had completely slipped my mind that on Sunday, we were due to go on a Mansfield Chapter National Trust outing, the last of the season. The location was to be Attingham Park in Shropshire with a couple of hours at Iron Bridge before lunch. We got up to this super misty morning. The trees and hedge on the other side of the football pitch looked so romantic I was tempted to burst into a version of the Elvis song. But Y told me many years ago that she couldn't cope with the singing and dancing first thing in the morning.

The coach-driver was Chris again, which added to our enjoyment of the trip as, not only is he an excellent driver but his 'chat' and 'information' is first rate. This time he was accompanied by Hannah, a sort of courier, who kept us all well supplied with tea etc., and everything from chilled wine and lager to hot soup. It was obvious by 10am that, as the sun strengthened, the mist would vanish. And it did. By the time we arrived at Iron Bridge the weather was glorious. Many years since we had visited and we were struck by how pleasant and interesting it is. Now a World Heritage site, which it thoroughly deserves as the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution; there are ten museums of which we only had time to briefly visit one. It goes without saying that we found time for a delicious coffee and a cake before reboarding the coach.
Attingham Park from the outside was a normal Regency stately home and a picture of the frontage would hold little interest, so I thought that this of one side of the entrance steps would give a flavour of the whole. The interior was fascinating. Lord Berwick had liked a painter Sir John Philip Hackert who specialised in Claude type landscapes. Unfortunately Hackert was not 'of the first rank' and we could not share his lordship's enthusiasm. Two Angelica Kaufman's almost rescued the situation. Angelica Kaufman was the first lady member of the Royal Academy and thoroughly justified her elevation. There were however, almost hidden away, some drawings and water-colours by the architect John Nash which were quite outstanding. The restaurant was good and we both enjoyed our meals.

The journey home was uneventful and Chris stopped in a quiet lay-by so that Y could deal with the raffle and I had my usual stub-folding duty - helped by two ladies whose results were much neater than mine. Perhaps raffle-ticket folding is a lady-thing. By the time we reached Mansfield I was suffering and done-for, hence the mini-blog. Had a blood-test this morning and the clinic have just rung. 2.8 and don't need another test till Tuesday 19th. Great !! Nothing clashes with the Sculpture Park visit.................

Sunday, September 10, 2006

National Trust Day out - Super day.

Sorry I forgot to mention in my last Blog post that we were going on one of our National Trust trips. Just got back and can't face blogging ce soire as we linguists say. Full Blog with pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Sunday Rest Day - Still warm

The production of a 'collage' appealed and I thought this one could be called "Tour of the borders".

Mostly common flowers, but top-left is some clovery leafed stuff which we've never known the name of, and the ladybird, right-hand column 2 down deserved having her picture taken. Devouring green fly as she was.

Rest Day today and quite lovely weather. 21C and a gentle easterly breeze. It is getting chilly and misty in the mornings though, with quite heavy dews - not to mention it being much darker. It won't be long to all our Scorpio birthdays and the clocks going on. Oh dear.

It was basically a Y chef day today and we had a lovely meat pie and plenty of veg, including some baby courgettes, which are an indulgence and we've decided at long last that we prefer sugar-snap peas to mangetout. Being flexible, I had made an apple pie/flan (just a pie without a lid on is what I mean) with the Bramley apples from Bob. No water, some sugar, ground cinnamon, stopped boiling before mushy, transferred to pastry-case, semi caramelised the sugar syrup and poured it over, sprinkled very lightly with dark muscavado and high oven for 10 minutes till pastry started to brown, as did the sugar. Lovely ! I was going to take a photo but we had eaten half of it before I remembered.

John rang yesterday evening and everything seems fine with everybody. Laura in Rome, Philip's firm have offered him a flat in lieu of a pay-rise and Alannah is getting on with her A-levels. John needed lots of reassuring about my blood-levels and health in general. But what can I say?

I think I'll make us a pot of tea ..............................

Friday, September 08, 2006

Beautiful Day - Outing to Ollerton

This empty table is at the back of The Snooty Fox at Ollerton, where we went with Bob and Sandra for lunch. Although the table was empty with a lovely riverside aspect, we ate indoors. At this time of year flies and worse seem determined to share one's dinner. And a very nice carvery meal it was too. It was really nice that Sandra could join us and we also met Stephanie again after a gap of many years. Basically, Yvonne and I fancied a run out because it was a glorious day 20+C and blue sky and just a waft of breeze. A typical late-summer English day. I ought to find a quote but it's getting late.

We delivered some stuff - the allspice berries, the particularly mean looking weed-burner and some art odds & ends. Bob is welcome to use them or find a good home etc., because we are still clearing things out.

Before we set off the clinic rang and changed my warfarin dosage again. Another blood-test on Monday. Ho hum! Good job the planned Yorkshire Sculpture Park visit is Saturday and Sunday because both the clinic and the surgery are shut at weekends!

Bungus sent us home with apples, homegrown tomatoes and we stopped en route to buy Victoria plums and Damsons. The plums are fine (already sampled) and we both love stewed damsons and claggy custard. In the supermarkets, if you ever see them, damsons are incredibly pricy and this farmer sold me 2 kgms for £1. I had asked for 2 lbs but there he was with his scales and kilogram weights. Some people are so law-abiding. We managed to find the new Mansfield bypass route home and it does cut off a lot of town driving. And much quicker.

This Daddy Long-Legs (crane fly I know, but Daddy Long Legs is better) has taken up residence on the wall in my loo, at the side of the cistern.

I couldn't bring myself to whack him/her with the magazine I had in my hand, so I took his/her photograph instead.

The life span of crane flies is not known to me but it hasn't moved a muscle in 12 hours. Not even the elegantly bent rear leg.

Ho hum! Live and let live..................

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Last Annesley Shot - Ollerton Pit Tip

Picture loading problems again folks. I'm sure they will appear at some stage. No 1, is the last picture for the time being, in the Annesley Church series but I may return when weather and lighting are different.

Today has been a pretty normal Thursday. I dropped Y at the tram and then just made it to the surgery in time for my blood-test. Nobody has rung me yet so, either it isn't urgent dosage change, or , more likely, the sample hasn't arrived at the appropriate clinic. Fingers crossed it turns up. Then I managed to track down some stuff in Lidl, even though the gutter-mesh had all gone. At 10.30am ! Probably heading for ebay or somebody's hardware shop.

Picture 2 is the view over the Ollerton Colliery tip, and the path is part of Bungus's morning walk. The picture would look better with the path as a diagonal, in my opinion, but I guess that would have involved wading into a pond or something. And people can be expected to suffer less than that, in the interests of Art; especially for somebody else's Blog, even if one is riding pillion.

I had thought of going to Eastwood Photographic Club this evening. It's their first meeting of the winter !! But I have just rung Brian to opt out because I don't want to overdo it and my 'done-for' state is already creeping up on me.

Y has just got on the Phoenix Park tram and will be there in around 20 minutes. So, I will go and collect her.............

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Still on Annesley - then Fungus

This doorway always makes me expect a cowled-monk to emerge and I usually stand there and wait. No luck yet though, over many years. What is really needed is a clear moonlit night with a slight breeze rustling the trees.

A return visit at a more suitable time is clearly called for. The monk would have just been to 'evensong' and was obviously Catholic because there was still some 400years to go before the Reformation. It suprises me that there isn't more interest in this Church because, as ruins go, it is well worth a visit and a notice-board carrying some information about it would be helpful.

Picture 2 is a Bungus Fungus Collage. He sent me one yesterday which was obscene and, bearing in mind the delicate natures of my lady readers, I decided not to publish it.

Bungus is a great collector and consumer of fungi. Many of which I wouldn't dare eat. But he is still with us. Mushrooms of all varieties (shitake etc.,) and blue-stalks I'm happy with but I've never ventured beyond that. And we do love mushrooms, so perhaps we should be more adventurous. and while we are dealing with 'matters Bungus' - I have no objection at all Bob to your hitching a lift so to speak, on this Blog, until you succeed in creating your own. You will certainly get there in the end but I can't say "it's easy" because it isn't.

Last night I used the BBc 'listen again' service to catch up with Front Row which featured an amazing young violinist Chloe Hanslip. 19yrs and brilliant. Something seems to draw talented girls to the violin. Anne Sophie-Mutter has long been a favourite of ours.

Odds & Ends - There is apparently a word for when one can't think of the name of something. It is 'lethologica' but so far I haven't managed to track it down. A super Art Magazine dropped through the letter-box. Called Art Quarterly it's main preoccupation is saving threatened works for the Nation and they got my name from Colin Fletcher who thought I would appreciate it. And I do.

More tomorrow ................

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Annesley Church - 12th Century

There should be a picture of Annesley Church here, but instead of uploading it for me 'Blogger' sent me an Error message saying their engineers were working on it. (it looks to me as if it needs more than blogger-engineers) I'll try again in a while. The Church is an attractive ruin, but I will wait for the pictures to arrive.

Picture 2 is one of the weirdest gravestones I've ever seen. Fortunately I remembered where it was in the Churchyard. If you study it carefully you will notice that the mason has begun the inscription and not bothered where the words end - he has just carried on onto the next line. The inscription says 1700 and something and isn't badly carved. It has after all stood the test of time so to speak.

The kids started back at School today so getting a haircut wasn't a problem. The barber said that yesterday was horrendous. While in Eastwood I remembered Allspice berries (unground) for Bob, and cards for Laura and Yvonne (John's wife) and cash, which I was seriously short of.

At home more jobs were cleared from my TBD list (do they still call them that?) one of which was to ring the Yorkshire Sculpture Park to reserve an electric scooter for Bob's and my visit. It is a trip I am really looking forward to. David tells me that they are now much more successful with the bread-machine. Since they bought new flour. Shame on me. Fancy giving one's son a bread-machine and providing him with stale old flour which should have been binned.

Bungus says he doesn't understand what 'this link' means. It is a shorthand Bob, for an actual web-page, and if you hover your mouse over the words and left-click, the page will open as if by magic. That isn't one, but this is click here and you should get my online photo-magazine. I also contacted the computer people recommended at Rainworth, re fitting me with more memory, and they sounded impressive.

Going to 'publish' then try to load pictures via 'edit'..........

Monday, September 04, 2006

Sunset one day - Sunrise the next

Picture 1 is yesterday evening's sunset, from Felley and looking over the Derbyshire hills. It is a pity that the clouds weren't redder. About 2cms to the right of the sun, on the skyline, is Crich Tower a well know landmark (but you would have to know what to look for or it will remain invisible). It is almost 20miles away. I need a camera with a longer lens - he he! At Crich is a tram museum which all the kids love because some are in use and you get to ride on them.

Picture 2 is this morning's sunrise from nearly the same place but looking in the opposite direction towards Newstead. Can't think of much of interest to tell you about Newstead. There used to be a colliery but that isn't remarkable in this area. Alternate rows of the colliery provided terrace-houses have been retained and refurbished and they now look very attractive. Before the village streets were cramped but now they feel quite airy and open. There are some good planning and architectural decisions made after all.

Blood -test again today. The Queen's Medical Centre and Nottingham City Hospital have recently merged and there are teething problems re decisions as to where different sorts of blood-tests are sent. I'm sure it will work out though. Tracy rang yesterday to see if I was OK. And I am. Y is back tomorrow. After my blood-test I managed to call in on Beryl again. She is so pleased for the company bless her. As she says "drinking coffee alone never tastes as good".

This quote, although of general interest, is earmarked for Madeline who was recently 'got-at' on WU forum for a most helpful 'post' re my 'italics'. It did seem a bit pointed because the 'poster' before M made a chatty comment too, about which nothing was said. Anyway here is the quote. I don't need to underline 'moral luminaries' !
"The people who are regarded as moral luminaries are those who forego ordinary pleasures themselves and find compensation in interfering with the pleasures of others."
Bertrand Russell
British author, mathematician, & philosopher (1872 - 1970)

That's about it............

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Very Windy - A Rest Day

A very windy day. Google tells me '49km/hour South Westerly' but it is really quite warm. Not that it matters because, except for a quick nip to Morrison's for bread and milk, I haven't been out. This morning was devoted to tidying up my photos in both My Pictures and Picasa and while doing so, I spotted this photo of Tenby Harbour. Up until now it hasn't been used for anything due to an ugly lamp-post sticking up from the bottom of the pic like a sore thumb. So I spent half an hour cloning it out and I challenge even Bungus to announce where it was. The remedial work wasn't difficult as the water is more-or-less uni-coloured.

Spoke to David on the phone and he wants to put the occasional comment on the Blog so I talked him through the process. His 'comments' will be most welcome and valued so I hope he persists. But, of course, I rarely comment on my own Blog. I had a look at Jill's pal's Blog 'yarnstorm' and, as Jill said some of the photography is excellent. Yarnstorm also uses a trusty aged compact. It's the photographer that counts, not the camera.

Even so, my Casio is now held together with black plastic tape and I may venture into buying another. When I was in Mansfield with Bob we had a look in Jessops because at that stage my interest went as far as a proper Digital SLR in order to get the lens length. They were great big heavy clunky ugly things (I do like lots of adjectives). But research shows me I don't need to go that far. The Canon A700 has a lens which gives the equivalent of 35mm - 210mm which is quite a long telephoto and would easily do better bird pictures. And about a third of the weight - and a third of the price !

Yvonne and Jill's meet happened with no hitches and they had a super day. Y's trip from Palmers Green to Turnham Green took around an hour and was painless. They have, after all, known each other since they were girls and hadn't actually met for a few years. Y says that now she has discovered it is so easy, she will go over again soon.

While I was having a poke about in the subject of italics I found this site which is of interest to writers. And I know that Madeline's husband Chris is a writer so I am posting this link. It is The Economist Magazine's house-style book and it seems to me to be excellent. But maybe Chris already has something similar. If so, no harm done.

And I am quite sure that 'unitalics' is a word. If it wasn't - it is now ..........

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Are we still Italicised?

This is Beryl's 'ice-plant' I think they are called. If not, perhaps one of our horticultural correspondents could intercede. Her's is more extensive than ours and also further on. Beryl rang last night and while not needing anything urgent she is having trouble with her legs. She sounded very low so I promised to go up for coffee. I did and she was so pleased to see me; I felt really guilty about not paying her more attention - she understood that it just hasn't been possible - but now I'm a lot better. Incidentally, a lady doctor from the surgery rang at 7.30pm yesterday evening to say that my morning's blood-sample had finally turned up at Queen's not The City Hospital. The INR level had gone up to 5.4 and she changed my warfarin dosage again! and booked me in for another test on Monday morning. Ho hum!

Re my italics. Jill commented "What is wrong with italics?" A fair point but if the whole thing is in italics, how do you 'italicise' something you want to draw attention to, like a foreign phrase, or a quote?

Anyway if the advice works,which I have received from 'Metaphysical' and 'Freeg131' on WebUser Forums, the problem should be solved from hereon. Out of interest, I went back to some older Blogs before I started interfering with my source-code and they were not italicised. Apparently, by accident I had shortened the embed tag to em.

According to Blogger if I wanted to rectify those days which were affected I would have to republish my entire Blog, I think. But it warns one that it can be a lengthy business. So I'll prolly leave them as they are. Having had quite enough of hospitals I don't want to take up Bungus's comment that I could go in for an 'italicectomy'.

Ha Ha! He He!!..................................

Friday, September 01, 2006

Doctor's - Tracy for Lunch

Back to a Brinsley sky for a change. This was taken on 'Caravan removal day' in between the periods of rain. Anyway, to today. I had to see my own Doctor this morning because I was told by the hospital to make an appointment. Dr. Latimer is so sensible and it was a relief to see her after my hospital experiences (which alarmed her). She said "You are more than capable of standing up for yourself. But lots of people or so vulnerable." This was when I told her the trouble I had had getting my heart-tablets and warfarin etc. She also supported my self-diagnosis, that if the pain goes away when I lie flat it is more likely to be muscular, or something to do with my back, than a kidney problem. Oh well - she insists I go back in a 2/3 weeks if I'm still suffering. After the Drs I had to have another blood-test zz...zzz...zzzz !

Tracy came for lunch. She likes to keep an eye on me (bless her) when Y is away. Needless to say her favourite lamb was served, together with mashed potatoes, broccoli, plus and I'm ashamed to admit it, some Asparagus spears that had travelled all the way from Peru, and mint-sauce and lashings of gravy. Still not enough though 'cos when she had seconds of mashed potato the gravy had all gone ! I think a personalised 1 litre jug is called for.

After lunch we had nice chatties and then I went back to Mansfield PCWorld, to sort out my mouse. Yesterday, it wasn't mentioned that while in PCWorld I bought a new one, because when I got home it wouldn't work. It now does. My trusty old mouse USB connector was in trouble. It had been bent during the fall. The scroll wheel was v. sloppy and the buttons imprecise and sometimes it seemed slow and to have a will of it's own. The new one (a Microsoft product) is excellent and much neater.

I had three of Bungus's tomatoes at breakfast time and there really is nothing to match homegrown for flavour. Just clouding over now but it has been a lovely day.

Still italicised. Going to have a serious go at it this evening.....................