Sunday, September 30, 2007

Long Eaton - Cup Cakes - 57F - 7mph E Wind

A lovely autumn morning and I arrived at Long Eaton promptly at 10.30am, nicely in time for my favourite coffee out of the proper espresso pot which David and Helen know I love.

David spent ages with my new mobile and 'memory card' and in the end couldn't get it to work properly. In a way, it was a relief because I considered that I had read the manual and followed all the necessary steps. We proved that the card was OK because we could write things to it from the PC. The problem is that the camera won't 'write' photos to the card. Definitely a case for a snooty trip to CarPhone Warehouse tomorrow morning. I need to go into Nottingham anyway to deliver some forms to the Solicitor.

The girls had made the cup-cakes and cornflaky things and I was presented with two of each put in a paper bag for my tea. I've just eaten them and what granddad could even feel aches/pains at such a time.? I delivered their goose fair envelopes, one each, and I also put a few pennies in an envelope for 'Mummy and Daddy' because they might like some mushy-peas or one of those disgusting hot-dogs with onions and that unique mustard. Here is a Goose Fair link. I like this one 'cos it's got flashing lights and video bits to click on.

Picture 2 is some Michaelmas Daisies which seem to be out early. But so is everything.

I don't know if Jill's 'Gold Crests' are a augury of a early winter in Scotland or not. No doubt due to global warming - everything else is. Our 'gold finches' have gone AWOL since their feeder wasn't topped up while I was in Norfolk. Probably having a 'strop'.

Matt's cartoon for the start of the Tory Party conference hits the spot again. As he so often does. I'm pretty sure he doesn't mind me very occasionally reproducing one of his drawings. It is meant as a sincere compliment.

Proust is being read on Oneword by Neville Jason and I am enjoying it greatly. I always thought that the translation of "À la recherche du temps perdu" was "Remembrance of Things Past" but now it is translated as "In search of lost time". Ugly in my opinion and conjuring up a picture of a mislaid wrist-watch. Can't they leave anything alone? A favourite Proust bit is "the famous tea-soaked madeline biscuit episode, where the taste prompts the memory of childhood" and there is no doubt at all, that smells and tastes can instantly bring to mind things long forgotten.

This quote appealed :-

"Men live in a fantasy world. I know this because I am one, and I actually receive my mail there."

Scott Adams
The creator of Dilbert no less.

....... Sleep tight everybody and I'll catch you tomorrow..............

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Feet-up day - Warmer - Still Butterley

You are quite right David, the 3rd Class coaches still look comparatively luxurious. As you enjoyed the last pic. I thought I would publish another. And I do accept that you are not an 'anorak' waiting to be free.

Another point about the coach illustrated. No-one could have any objection to the tasteful and discreet NO SMOKING lettering on the window. But that ghastly red & white job that is now stuck up everywhere, often flying in the face of aesthetics. I have even seen one on a cathedral door !

Little short of vandalism. Banksy would have far more scruples.

Aches and painwise:- Thank you all for your good wishes and can report some improvement. I still feel as if I have had a six-inch knife plunged into my back just to the left of my spine below the kidney area. And I haven't got colleagues to blame these days !

But I shall recover - I always do. In addition to my patches I'm munching my way through strips of codeine and my hot-pad is in constant use. Not so bad now it is a bit cooler outside, and it saves on the central heating bill.

Thanks Pete for the comment-on-the-comment, and I know you like to be in the thick of the action. It was that I had somewhere in the recesses, that due to getting older someone wanted to shield you from some lifeboat activities. If I've got it wrong please chip in and put us right. The last thing I want to do is mislead my readers. It was a pleasure to link to your site and for anyone who missed the link here it is again. Always a joy to read, always something new, and super pictures. We stayed with Mr and Mrs Roast at Port Erin and had a great time.

What with her fear of heights Y managed to get stuck halfway up/down the Laxey Wheel but her maternal instinct saved the day when a group of children needed to get past.

You are quite right Jill to mop up good gravy with a round of bread. If I had cooked the meal I would consider it to be the sincerest compliment. Debra unashamedly uses her dessert spoon!

Picture 2 is some fungi at Butterley. Identity unknown to me I'm afraid. Bungus would know but unfortunately he is away. Help please anyone?

My attention was drawn by their similarity to cobs fresh out of a baker's oven. We shall probably now be in for the argument as to whether they are called cobs, rolls, baps or whatever.

By the way, the dark lines around some, are the harsh shadows as a result of using flash - they haven't been photoshopped.

And Yes Reg! I agree about the judge at EPS. A man who can mark a picture as 20 out of 20 and then go-on to suggest ways in which it could be improved, is not a man whose logic or intellect commend him to me. And if he is a 'reader of blogs' good. If someone feels qualified to judge photographs he must be prepared for an assessment of his judging.

"Sed quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

Trans.- "Who shall guard the guards themselves?" Juvenal around 100AD

Appropriate quotes seem to present themselves at the moment. Much better than scouring t'internet.

I am determined to go to Long Eaton tomorrow, pains or not. But I shall have another early night. Strangely enough under the circumstances, I am sleeping well. Catch you tomorrow

p.s. How can the Ian Huntley business ber described as an 'attempt suicide' when he told the warders that he had taken an overdose?

Friday, September 28, 2007

Y at Palmers Green - Me? - suffering

A picture from WoW at Butterley - "Photographer at work". Roy's blue woolly hat has been a feature of WoW outings since way before I started going with them. But, as the others had shot off elsewhere this picture is perhaps unique. Or probably not because they have been there before.

Today is going to be a 'One picture blog' because I am suffering and had to leave the camera-club early last night. I had been sitting with my head at quite a sharp angle, to see the screen and the result was very similar to last year when I did a similar thing in the theatre. On that occasion I finished up in hospital with a suspected kidney problem - the pain was so intense. Last night the 'judge' didn't help but I'm prepared to blame my discomfort rather than his incompetence.

Thanks Pete for you compliments about the 'headstocks' picture and from a holiday on your beautiful island about 15 years ago we remember well the railways and the Douglas Trams. I suspect that in Manx terms 15yrs is the bat of an eyelid. A visit to Pete's site please clicky here is strongly recommended. Pete's Web User monicker is Manxislander where, apart from much else, he is a lifeboat man - even though I think they have told him he is getting a touch old for the rough stuff. Web User forums is an extremely friendly place to be, and with whose help I have gone in 2 years from 'complete idiot' to 'less of an idiot'.

Jill - I think it should be bourguignon - you had mistakenly added a 'gin' instead of a 'guig' but I'm sure it tasted the same. I've not had it since a meal in our local Pierre Victoire when the pieces of beef were all identical cubes, like OXO, and I was very suspicious. Didn't taste very good either.

Quote for the day :-

"The first time I see a jogger smiling, I'll consider it."

Joan Rivers

I've just spoken to Helen on the 'phone and arranged to nip over to Long Eaton on Sunday morning and take the girls some Goose Fair pennies. I'll do a live link later for those non Nottingham readers. The girls are excited already! If I feel the same tomorrow as I do at the moment I'm going to stay in bed and mooch about, when I can get my legs out and onto the floor. Sleep tight everybody.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Sold sign - Laura's Mostar

Being by now an experienced 'blogger' I know how to put two pictures side by side without a gap and these 2 tell of an important development. At breakfast time a white van pulled up outside and changed the For Sale sign to Sold. The driver then delivered the right-depicted 'flier' through the letter-box. We are so impressed by Redfern's nifty business acumen that we are persuaded to use the firm for our removal.

I am nowhere finished with WoW's Butterley pictures but I thought you would like to see the above promptly. Aunty Etty will be pleased ! But we are still trying to control our excitement Until the money is in the bank and you have the keys to your new house actually in your hand things can still go wrong.

Also I wanted to publish a picture from Laura's travels and decided on this one of Mostar. Great picture Laura - it really captures atmosphere. I know how keen you are on your photography and this, and the others, are super.

Your camera may need the time/date setting sorting though, because the EXIF data for this pic shows 3rd Jan 2005. It obviously isn't a January picture because of all the foliage on the trees.

My friend Bungus moans about EXIF data - he says "Does it tell people which hat I had on at the time?"

I did a couple of National Trust jobs this morning and much 'messing-about'. Yesterday evening we enjoyed Michael Palin - he does succeed so well with putting people at their ease and getting interesting stuff. The bit about Cappadocia appealed to me a lot because of the 'Early Roman Empire and the Rise of Christianity' component of my degree. But I readily accept that it is a rather specialised interest. While in the middle of it, I went before a selection-board for a job, still within the Police, and was asked "Tell me Inspector, what is your bedside reading at the moment?" I truthfully replied "Grenstead's Shorter History of the Doctrine of the Atonement - Sir! " . There was an awkward silence ! And I didn't get the job.

Jill you are fitting in to the 'Chief Commenter' role extremely well. The story about the Indians dressed as Cowboys was priceless. And I did read about 'monetary sciatica' but my wallet lives in the rear pocket on the opposite side. Could be the 'redistribution of wealth' I suppose. But, touch wood, these pain-killer patches are the biz. I had the best night's sleep I've had for ages and was amazed when I looked at the time and saw 8.20am. Here's hoping etc...... Also, from your e-mail Y is looking for a Guardian in Burton Joyce because our newsagent round the corner doesn't have many. Mostly The Sun I'm afraid ! Not being critical though - as Auberon Waugh said "Where else would we turn for moral guidance in these troubled times?"

I think that that can fill my quote-spot for today. Must go. Salads to prepare, Y to collect from Phoenix Park and then me off to EPS and see how my pictures fare.

Catch you tomorrow Sleep tight.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

WoW at Butterley - Cold - Good chip cob

We were lucky with the weather for our WoW day, apart that is from the temperature being -20C with a biting wind. I exaggerate, it was 48F, but I have been listening to Ranulph Fiennes on the radio. There were 4 of us today, President Brian, Reg, Roy and me.

Mike had a dental appointment but he is back from holiday so I am excused cookhouse-fatigue at EPS tomorrow evening.

Butterley was our chosen venue, only a few miles away and loads to photograph. A farm, a Railway Museum and a tiny Railway Station please click here and then The Peacock for our chip cob which was first rate.

Brian and Reg walked further than Roy and I wanted to but we enjoyed the Farm and then the Railway Museum which was full of nostalgic images. Old fashioned leather suit-cases and banded trunks which it doesn't seem five minutes since we all got rid of them. Picture 1 was the top of some winding gear at The Brittain Pit Farm and it took me a while to get into the right position. I knew I wanted the brightness of the sun just peeping round the brickwork. But the star-shaped flare is pure luck. I wish I could claim I did it on purpose but I can't !

Picture 2 was through the glass of the carriage, sensibly locked, but oh what a shame they needed to spoil the ambience with that ridiculous 'No Smoking' sign.

There was so much to see at the Museum and we had agreed to meet the others at Butterley Station just after noon and at the bottom of the car park one could access a small reservoir. A chap directed me to a water-side bench but it was so cold I sat in the car and had a mug of my coffee.

After lunch and chat it was home and telephone calls and e-mails. Lovely e-mails from 'Aunty Etty' and granddaughter Laura (just back from further globe-trotting) and she had written me a super newsy e-mail together with pictures. I will deal with them tomorrow and also Jill's. No new news about Bungus. I managed to speak to Colin and we had a lengthy chat. He is having trouble with his eyes and seems to feel himself fortunate to have one working well ! The other, he says is like looking through jelly. He still manages a full life though with his poetry, six acres, and his sheep. A ram of his own seems to be is most recent acquisition. And Lyn is still happily small-holding.

During the night I had listened to some good radio. Matthew Parris interviewing Prue Leith about Elizabeth David (for me, radio doesn't get much better than that). And also the serilialisation of 'Villette' with Keira Knightley in the cast. she is obviously equipped with more than just looks! This evening we watched Michael Palin who has reached Turkey via Bulgaria and the programme was excellent fun again.

Just a quick quote :-

"Sentence structure is innate but whining is acquired"

Woody Allen

I think an early night is called for. I was up at 3.30am again and no afternoon kip ! Catch you tomorrow. Y at BJ, me at EPS but not till evening.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Blood Test - Ikea - Shopping - Chilli

It seems quite a while since last month but I feel sure that this must be the 'Harvest Moon' because we are just about on the Autumnal Equinox. Indeed it seems like it, getting light at around 6.30am and dark around 6.30pm.

First thing this morning after Karen's arrival was my blood test, and the clinic have since telephoned me to say that my morphine-patches don't seem to have messed things up too much and my INR is within range even if a little low.

Then we went to Ikea for their incredible breakfast - a full English for 95p and as much coffee as you can drink.

From The Times Online:

" But this isn’t the only reason to worship the Swedish god of bookcases. Because Which? magazine has just put Ikea top of the supermarkets’ breakfasts league. Oh yes, you will find no better value than its 95p plate of bacon, beans, hash brown, sausage, scrambled egg and tomato. At £2.49, Sainsbury’s breakfast seems, by comparison, positively scandalous."

Decided to cook a 'chili con carne' from scratch, no mixes and discovered I had run out of chili powder. I bought some in Lidl and it is useless. Very weak and my recipe calls for 10ml which usually results in a meal definitely on the 'hot' side. Mine tasted reasonably but I guess to get some clout I would have needed 20ml. It is destined for the bin and I will get some genuine stuff.

A good discovery though has been Rington's Tea which we shall probably stick with for a while. We've tried several since Morrisons Gold Label ended and haven't really loved any. I remember their vans coming round although my memory doesn't extend to to the horse-drawn job illustrated in the link.

Yes Jill we remember you driving over to The Richmond Gate to collect Y and she confirms that your trip was to Syon House. Must be over 20 years ago ! Due to the unfortunate temporary absence of Bungus you will have to rise to the challenge of 'commenter- in-chief' but I am sure you can handle it. Wikipedia claims please click that the 'bullace' is slightly different from the 'damson' but I think if you were eating one you wouldn't know the difference. When cooked properly the skins aren't impossibly chewy but some people find the stones a nuisance. And next time I am printing, I will do you a postcard size print of the sepia artichokes and post it to you.!

It is our Walk on Wednesday day tomorrow with my photographer chums and this quote seems relevant:-

Lets hope we get good weather. Sleep tight everybody.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Trip to Tip - Booked Richmond Gate - Close ups

A period-piece. Artichoke heads in sepia which I thought suited them. I've only got 4 left now because Maureen has the others for her Art Class students.

I deliberately threw the background fuzzy by using f 4.5. My WoW people agree with me that some indication of the 'setting' is best. Those completely blurred backgrounds (which I admit I have done) are beginning to look somewhat of a cliché and lacking interest.

Picture 2 is completely dfferent and an experiment using my newly acquired Kenko extension rings - for close-up work.

The subject is not 'boulders on the sea-shore' it is 'pea-gravel in a plant tray' from about 6cms. And that was with only the smallest ring on. They fit between the camera and the lens and provide considerable magnification. It is early days for me with the kit and I know I could get it sharper. But one gets hardly any 'depth of field' and it is hard to decide which bit is best sharp !

We went to the Council Tip this morning and disposed of rubbish from the garage and after that we have had a fairly quiet day. The Xword was finished by 10.30am - I always think Monday's is an easy one to gentle one into the working week - which doesn't apply now we've retired. Another job was to book us into The Richmond Gate Hotel for Jill and Ro's Golden Wedding thrash. We are going to stay the night before and the night itself with leisurely drives going and coming back. Rather different from the days when I used to drive down to Surbiton for a 10.30am meeting and be back in Nottingham for 3pm. The Hotel please click is well known to me because the Central Committee of the Police Federation used to use it all the time. Don't know if they still do?

Wew are both still tussling with our new mobiles. Can't send photos, can't download photos onto PC - in fact, can't do lots of things. But we will !

Surprised Jill, that you don't know 'damsons' and please click for some pictures thereof. Having looked at the pictures myself there is nothing to give you an idea of scale. "Not holding a 50p piece in their teeth" to paraphrase Bungus. They are around normal olive size and have a unique flavour. Hard to say bitter, but certainly not sweet, and not really acidic either. Very English, stewed with custard. And No! I never read 'The Little Princess'.

Quote for the day :

"A proverb is a short sentence based on long experience"

As Cervantes pointed out a few years ago

I hope everybody has a good night. Especially those who aren't very well. Catch you tomorrow.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Rest Day - Y busy - Sausage & Mash

This little corner of Steven's sunken Victorian Garden always makes me think of that classic if depressing book of childhood. The Secret Garden. I read it perhaps twice and then decided against a third, mainly because I didn't like the people.

As against The Coral Island which I probably read 40 times because I liked Ralph, Peterkin and Jack. Even the grisly bits didn't spoil it for me. They simply wouldn't consider it for publication these days.

One further development from yesterday is that Hannah and her friend Anna have each decided to set up their own blog.

Spoke to David and told him about our new mobiles. He said he has trouble sending photographs - so it isn't just us, and Andy. I think it is a case for Karen on Tuesday morning. David is OK but Helen is not too well and both the girls seem to be suffering bugs. It always seem to be when they all get back to School. The garages now have a roof, and one big door which is better than two smaller ones in space-creation terms

Picture 2 shows, I think, a hover fly. Its propensity to hover enabled me to photograph it before it left.

I know it isn't a wood wasp because they have a long sting-thing at the rear end - even though they don't sting you.

Our Rest Day has been uneventful. Y did a load of washing and ironing and then went on 'garage clearance' and 'garden cutting back' while I cooked the sausages from the Farmers' Market with onion sauce, carrots, courgettes, potato done with the ricer, and runner beans from Lisa. They were really lovely, not a trace of 'stringy', and so fresh and full of flavour. The onion sauce was successful and popular as always. The we had stewed damsons and custard. Our allotment man up the road had saved us some damsons and he wanted 60p a 1lb (actually each bag was a pound and a half). I said I would like three bags, so he reduced them to 50p a bag, and threw in 2 more bagsfull ! And oooh ! the flavour ! well worth having a ramekin each to spit the stones into. I exaggerate - it is permissible to transfer them by via your desert spoon !

Quote of the Day :-

"The human mind treats a new idea the same way the body treats a strange protein; it rejects it."
Early night planned. Lots of reading to catch up on though. See you tomorrow.

n.b. for new 'blog readers'. Anything in orange will be a live-link and just needs a left click. Likewise with the pictures. If you click one, you get a screen filler version.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

A busy Saturday at Burton Joyce / Editor Hannah!

Pic 1: Of our statue Sally!

A busy day to the morning, going to cooking lessons at ten o' clock.
Today we made miniature pizzas and crisp corn-flake cake. The corn-flake was a bit like a pie, with pastry, sweet jam and the sticky corn-flakes.

Just after half twelve I came back home with my friend Anna and we turned on the computer. We played loads of fun games, but all of a sudden I heard the door-bell ring. I looked out of the upstairs window and there was standing Grandma & Grandad -
Graham. I raced down the stairs like a lunatic, I opened the door and shouted " HELLO!" . I think they were happy to see me and I was happy to see them with the look on my face.

Pic 2: Me writing the blog!

I went on back up stairs to see Anna and then carried on playing on the PC. This got boring so I suggested to go outside while it was nice. Thats what we did!

Grandma promised to take little Millicent to the park (with Miles as well) so off they went down the yellow brick road. Me, Grandad-Graham and Anna start the blog, but then the time we managed to set the PC up Anna's dad arrived and Anna sadly had to leave!
So thats what i'm doing it that picture Grandad-Graham's blog!
I chose this smiley!thats it from me goodbye hopefully see you soon! HannnahXX

Friday, September 21, 2007

Drains - Capocci's - Atonement - New 'Phone

I've not started carrying commercials but this is my new mobile 'phone. Identical to Y's so we can learn them together. My first thought was to take a snap but then I realised that 'google images' would no doubt do the necessary - and it did.

The 'loss adjusters' contacted us and are sending a 'drain man' with a CCTV camera sometime after lunch on Tuesday. It was really strange because they rang me just I was emerging from CarPhone Warehouse clutching the above. The helpful young man in the shop has swapped over my SIM card so it probably wasn't quite as miraculous as I thought.

We decided (of course) to visit Nottingham by tram and our first call was for a coffee and toasted tea-cake at Capocci's click here if you are interested and then just round the corner to Cineworld for the film.

To begin with I thought "I'm not going to like this" but I realised it was 'the characters' I didn't like and the film steadily developed and at the end we both thought it was one of the best films we have seen recently. Keira Knightley and James McAvoy were both excellent and will no doubt win loads of awards. Even our friend J at Mansfield, a very proper lady of our sort of age, said to Y on the 'phone "Isn't he handsome?" But for me the different actresses playing Briony at her different ages, stole the show. Culminating with Vanessa Redgrave as the aged Briony. What can I say? She is still a brilliant actress and a quirk of the lip or a partly raised eyebrow can speak volumes.

Just enough time for a visit to our Market Square for the twice monthly Farmers' Market where we bought some good-looking sausages and (for me) a small black-pudding. And to eat while we were waiting for the tram, a delicious beef-burger. A piece in today's Telegraph claims that hyphenated words are a thing of the past, and that should have been beef burger. They blame e-mails and text messages but I think it is more that people simply don't know what should be hyphenated and what not. Come to think of it - I'm never sure myself ! But I sense that 'pot belly' and 'potbelly' and 'pot-belly' carry subtly different shades of meaning.

Quote for the day - this appeals :-

"A man may be a fool and not know it, but not if he is married"

H. L. Mencken

.....A fairly early night I think. Perhaps a little read, some radio etc....... Sleep tight everybody......

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Y at BJ - then Ballet - me EPS

Just starting the blog intending to finish it on my return from Eastwood Photographic Society.

Picture 1 is of an 'art deco' piece in the corner of my room at The Vines. Hideous I suppose, yet strangely attractive. No title, no author, but it is odd that this afternoon Y has been to the ballet. Romeo and Juliet no less by Northern Ballet.

The company now enjoys an excellent reputation and Y prefers them to the Russian Ballet who, apparently, keep pausing for expected applause.
She reports an excellent production this afternoon and couldn't restrain a tear during the sad bit at the end. She went with her friend Sylvia who, like Y enjoys the matinées. Sylvia is an arthritis sufferer and can hardly move her hands any more.

Picture 2 is self-explanatory except that I have inverted it in PhotoShop so it now looks like a cross between infra-red and an old fashioned negative. The original was very boring - "So what's different now?"
I can hear in the distance.

I have had a busy day preparing pictures to take in this evening for judging next week and doing odd jobs. I finally managed to get the artichoke heads over to Maureen and I hope her art class students can make something interesting of them.

p.s. more will follow later - all being well.

11pm and just returned from EPS. The lecturer, John Jones was very good and brought with him some excellent prints. Over the years he has many Exhibition successes to his name and still works entirely with film, and slides, and darkroom. I noticed that most of his work is on matt rather than glossy paper and it does add a sort of arty/dignity to a print. He ranged from leichens to fungi to landscapes and people pictures - in fact almost the whole gamut except sport and action shots.

I enjoyed doing the tea - it means I talk to more people and try to be welcoming to new members and the simply shy. We are hoping to nip down Nottingham and see 'Atonement' tomorrow. Some critics like it, others don't. We will make up our own minds.

Sleepy tight. Catch you tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

WoW day - cloud iridescence - Potato Ricer

Picture 1 is Bungus's version of the Cloud Iridescence. It's a better picture than my own which was too vivid so I decided to use his, as a better representation.

And thanks Madeline. Once you pointed out that it is iridescence rather than luminescence I googled it and found the original corres. immediately. It was dated 30th September 06, so perhaps their appearance is usually at this time of year. Anyway - welcome back ! Roy says they used to call them 'ice clouds'.

The 'partly in German' problem is a straightforward Google Blogger glitch. I visited the 'Blogger Help Groups' forum and people have been complaining for the last 3 days. Eventually some Google boffin will fix it - they always seem to. I notice that my blogger toolbar has today sprouted a 'write Hindi' button. You never know व्हें ई I might need it ?

Whilst on the subject of Bungus pictures I can't resist this shot of his rather splendid 'bog' at Holbeach. To torture poor old Emerson - "if you have a better bog than your neighbour...etc......"

Before leaving 'comments' - we are all delighted Jill that you are enjoying your new electric blanket with it's selective hot-spot for your feet. Personally I don't like electric blankets. I much prefer to get into a cold bed and let it warm up naturally. It's just a theory but I think one finishes up more cosy that way than by artificial means. Y loves hers though !

Our WoW day was a success, even thought the light was not good, and Roy came too which was nice. He is having hip trouble and didn't want to walk much which suited me ideally. Reg answered all my Photoshop questions and we had a good chinwag which is a substantial part of it. If one talks photography endlessly, no-one says "boring". I took my laptop into the pub at lunchtime and with many problems Reg was able to show rather than tell which is always best.

I must sort out pictures for tomorrow because Trevor now needs them (very reasonably) the week before the actual competition rather than 'on the night'. Whether or not Mike is actually back affects whether I shall be on 'cookhouse fatigues' again, making the tea. Quite like doing it anyway ! Y now understands that, even if I am whacked, I enjoy a couple of hours in the kitchen preparing food ! I find it relaxing. Debra's Andy is exactly the same. This evening I did pork chops and stuffing, with carrots, green beans and mashed potato. On Peter's Joan's recommendation I used the potato-ricer for the first time (a present from TJ - hitherto only used as a meat-press) and the result was excellent. Light and fluffy and I shall certainly use it again.

Today's quote should reassure several of my readers:-

"Tis healthy to be sick sometimes"

In the true spirit of British sportsmanship Leicester 'gifted' a goal to Nottingham Forest. Please click here to read all about it. This evening we watched the BBC 4 showing of Michael Palins travels in Eastern Europe and, as always, found it fascinating. Isn't Albania a strange place ?

Normal BJ day for Y tomorrow and I intend to take Maureen some of the artichoke heads for her Art Class. If they are dry -it is raining heavily at the moment. I would have taken them this morning but the stems are too thick and tough for secateurs, and I needed Y to find the pruning saw.

Sleep tight folks. I'll catch you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Still from Norfolk - Blood Test - Doctor

During our expedition to Little Cressingham Church on Sunday evening, to catch the patch of sunlight on the wall, we noticed something unusual. - This piece of napped flint about 5' up and around the size of a playing card and a half.

As Picture 1 shows, someone has put a date on it. The look of it suggested that it had been done with a punch and hammer. Neither of us had ever seen this type of work before; even with Bungus's professional architectural knowledge he was flummoxed.

It could well be a mystery for AnonymousRob to solve. Or Reg, of course, or Roy, or any other reader.

Picture 2 is some 'cloud luminescence' we spotted on the way from the Church to the Pub. I speak with authority because sometime last year I had seen some and wondered what it was. At that time Madeline explained and sent me a link including pictures. BUT I CANT FIND IT !

So, if you are reading this Madeline please tell us again.

I'm still messing about with the Norfolk pictures, in Photoshop, and I am getting there, slowly. So, more might follow, if I see any good enough to publish.

This morning was my routine blood-test, followed by an appointment with the Doctor. She checked my legs and their movement very thoroughly. I reported that I seem to have become 'impenetrable' to my present tablets which no longer work much in the matter of pain-relief. She has prescribed for me these morphine-patches which stay on for 3 days and release a steady trickle. I stuck one on my arm at 5pm and, it could be wishful thinking , but it seems to be working ! Tomorrow will be a better test because if the chaps are 'WoW' - ing, I would like to go.

Just this minute spoken to Reg and there is only me and him going. It will be fun though and I can pick his 'photoshop' brains.

A quote for anyone who wants to achieve things :-

"No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings"

He makes a good point, but it won't stop me picking people's brains, whenever appropriate.

It says it's going to rain tomorrow. Oh well !.. Hope Ray is feeling a little better and keeping his feet up. Sleep tight everyone.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Safe Return - Tired but Great Time - now raining

Thanks Pete for the compliments on the pictures. Nice to see your 'comment' anyway and to hear that you managed a little time. I know from your site how busy you are !

For everyone else's benefit please click here for Manaman's Cloak and see how Peter crams 26 hours into each day.

As I had my tripod handy, from last night's 'Sunlight on Church Wall' picture I decided to do a couple of my room. Without flash is always better, and beds and grade 2 listed beams don't move about much anyway, so you can use a long exposure. The Vines is timber framed dating from the 15th Century and I hope that my snaps capture the feel. I was extremely comfortable in it and at peace with the world. The breakfasts were more than good and a starter was fresh fruit salad which included locally picked blackberries ! (Please see last night's blog)

After breakfast and packing we headed for home and decided to stop halfway at Boston a Lincolshire Market Town famous mainly for it's 'stump' which is in fact the Tower of St. Botolphs which is reputed to be the tallest in Britain.

The journey home was not quite uneventful - on one part of the A17 a van pulled out of a side road to turn right and it didn't seem as if he saw us, then, in the nick of time as we swerved, he braked. Then later on, on a narrow country road a lorry overtook cars and finshed up on our side of the road. In both cases Bungus was at the wheel and he did well to avoid collisions.

Almost as soon as I arrived home it started to rain. We were lucky to have such pleasant weather. But Y says it has been nice here too. It was lovely to see her. I've got so much to relate. It was also nice to hear that she has had a similarly good time at TJ's. Poor Joan's cough and chest infection is still troubling her, after all this time.

Quick quote then an early night I think:-

"The important work of moving the world forward does not wait to be done by perfect men"

George Elliot

Done driving for a bit - any distance anyway. Sleep tight and I'll catch you tomorrow.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Wells next the Sea (Failed) - Blackberries

Little more than a 'bloggette' due to busy day and general tiredness. Been great though !

Last night we spotted this shaft of sunlight in the ruined church at Little Cressingham just down the road - but mine were blurry due to camera-shake so we returned this evening 'tripodded up' and succeeded with some sharp snaps.

On the opposite side of the lane were blackberry brambles (see Picture 2) and we could have picked 5lbs without moving the car. We 'grazed' . The picture just shows a 'clutch' - if you can imagine that repeated a hundredfold you will be close.

It has been nice to have messages from Y who seems to have mastered her new mobile, voice and text, and entries in phone book etc., and TJ has found and restored the family photo Y really likes. I'm looking forwad to seeing her tomorrow to learn all about it.

Earlier in the day we had toured Norfolk and tried Wells-next-the-Sea as Y and I have done before but there were so many people, and nowhere at all to park, so we gave up. We went to a pub in Swaffham and had a drink and I had a cheese sandwich but Bungus didn't fancy anything. Then we steadily returned to Grt Cressingham and had brief looks at Houghton Hall, and Holkham Tea Rooms and odd spots in between.

Then, I suppose we must pay attention to drains full of tree roots, and 'loss assessors' etc., I have a Dr's appointment on Tuesday morning and also my routine blood test. Poor Ray is on the 'blood test treadmill' too and doesn't sound to happy. I really hope he soon feels a lot better !

The Vines, where we are staying is absolutely first class. Breakfast this morning was lovely and the rooms are super - in fact we can't fault it. And access to t'internet is the icing on the cake.

Thanks for The Hell's Angels story Jill. Strangely enough, in spite of their fearsome appearance, they can be very nice people.

I wasn't going to do a quote but the Dr. Johnson quote on my igoogle page pushed itself forward :-

"It is better to live rich than to die rich"

All of our family would agree wholeheartedly !

........Sleep tight everybody.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Norfolk Photo-jaunt - Y with TJ

The reason for my enigmatic blog post of Thursday is that, for security reasons, I didn't want to make too much of my absence from Radiogandy Mansions on a weekend jaunt, predominately photographic, with Bungus.

On Friday we travelled as far as Holbeach and stayed with Norman and Gill at Elloe Lodge, where Y and I have stayed before. As always we were most welcome and it was nice to see them again. In the evening we tried a chinese restaurant we have visited before but it didn't work out. Atmosphere all wrong, drinks too expensive, that sort of thing. We managed a quick sunset snap before leaving for an altogether better chinese restaurant that Norman had recommended. Quite excellent this one. It is a pleasure to report that I slept well. You could expect my leg to be trouble, following the driving, but it wasn't. Our 'Full English Breakfast' was good, and I contacted Y around 9am, she was nearly en route to TJ's - they will have a lovely time and also sort out Y's new 'phone.

When we left Holbeach it was not too long a drive to Swaffham for the market, then Great Cressingham and The Vines. Please click for their website. It really is as nice as it looks. My bedroom is ace ! But I have banged my head on a beam three times already.

The reason you can read this, is that broadband internet access is only an extra £2 a day. Seems most reasonable to me. Especially when viewed against nearly 10 quid last night for a pint of lager for Bungus, and a Kaliber for me, at the upmarket chinese restaurant. So, I ran up a temporary aerial, cranked up the Lister diesels and Radiogandy was 'on the air'. Figuratively speaking of course.

Picture 2 is Bungus photographing the wonderful bridge at Sutton, so well known to A17 users. If Reg is reading I am 'inching forward' with PhotoShop but have loads of questions for him. I found a nice bookshop in Swaffham but my only purchase was a postcard to send to Colin and Lyn. The market, as Bungus predicted was very good and we copped for a lovely sunny day and a bright blue sky.

Lots of exciting things to explore in the neighborhood. We have already visited Castle Acre Castle which as you will see from the link was well worth a visit. What we need to do now is decide on an evening meal ! All this fresh air and excitement has given me an appetite.

Quote for the day. Didn't pack my usual reference books so, here goes :-

" Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep"

Piet Mondrian
We shall have to see what culinary delights the Swaffham area offers. Sleep tight everybody. Catch you tomorrow.