Sunday, May 28, 2006

This weekend is going according to somebody else's plan

To start with we didn't go to Bampton for the first time in 32 years on the Friday ...having packed the tent(s), the pickup and the car*, Barney wasn't feeling well so we decided to go on Saturday morning (very early). Then he still wasn't feeling well so we decided to go tomorrow (probably very early). There were messages and discussions about campsite breakfasts. Sausages were collected (and no doubt will be cooked and eaten tomorrow morning before we arrive)
It being Youngest's birthday today, I went to the restaurant where she works, to deliver presents (rather crossly because I thought she'd drop in and collect them on her way to work). Still there were friends there and while I was waiting for her to have a free moment, I enjoyed their company. Then she appears, all rather elegantly mudstained down her front because the flowers her boyfriend had had delivered to the restaurant had fallen over and she slipped in the resulting wetness and broke 3 (empty) plates. This apparently endeared her to all the clientele. (I know this because most of them told me how lovely she was in spite of having fallen flat on her face in front of them all).
I was introduced to various customers outside in the (enormous) smokers' corner (as, this is my mum isn't she nice) and found myself discussing a mysterious trout restaurant in Oxford (not the one everyone knows but another one opposite a cemetary and near the Rugby club), the wonderfulness of my daughter and the comparative awfulness of waitresses in England (compared to those in America, France and somewhere else I can't remember) and the customers' children. I felt Youngest's mantle settling on my shoulders. I received compliments on her behalf and accepted them graciously. I drank only 1 glass of wine since I had to drive home soon. I babbled. So did the customers (all rich and male and....full of themselves, but sort of nice since they were unanimous in declaring youngest to be the best thing since sliced bread). I went to find Youngest and found myself joining her in polishing cutlery and exchanging enthusiastic farewells with yet more customers.
All this was so much not what I expected to be doing tonight that when her boyfriend phoned up and somehow I ended up chatting to him (!) I may have said something inapropriate. Or not..really I'm not sure. she didn't snatch the phone away so I guess it wasn't too bad.
There were some small children of other staff there too. We agreed that giving helium ballons to Youngest was a very good idea. The customers also agreed.
I mean, this is supposd to be a restuarant not a circus!!!
Isn't it?
I can see why she loves working there. I can see why they are happy to be employing the youngest restaurant manager in the country! I can also see why she never gets time off without a one else there can do what she does and sell vast amounts of extremely expensive wine at the same time as well as polishing cutlery at midnight. I think they should be paying her just to be there and get someone else to do the cutlery.

Well she and gorgeous babe will be joining us at Bampton on Monday and we are going tomorrow even if only for the day. I have acquired new insight into the restaurant trade and have had a very entertaining evening into the bargain. I think I may have given as good as I got too.

It's weird. This is one of the very small people who completely filled my life for 20 odd years. And (like the other two), has turned into something wonderful and exciting and magical for other people. How did they do that? I mean I know what crap they got given to start with.

I think what I'm saying is, the trouble and strife is worth it. If you're a parent, have don't allways do your best because you have your own agenda as well as theirs and even if you really try and live your life for them you still don't seem to be getting it right. But 15, 20 years on, you'll find they've done more than you could possibly have imagined with whatever you gave them.
And if you're a child (yes, I supose you must be somebody's child) have faith in yourself...your parents undoubtedly screw things up for you but you can still do more than they seem to think you can. You are your own person as well as theirs and you can do wonders with that.
I really really mean this. Have faith in your children. Have faith in yourself.
Do them and yourself the honour of trust.
They can do it, You can do it... learn all the screwed up stuff you try and teach and they tried to teach and still come out their/your own and extraordinary people.

I'm sorry, it's late and I ought to be in a campsite in Bampton and I had another glass of wine when I got home and my typing, grammar and syntax are all to pot. It's possible I've got sentimental also.

*the tents, the pickup and the car are still packed and I hope they've waited patiently and kept dry so far!

Friday, May 26, 2006

I have power

Over inanimate objects.
I'm packing. We're away for the weekend. One of my skills is the ability to confine an unbelievably large amount of stuff into a ridiculously small space. This is a good thing of course when you have little space and much to put in it (it was a very good thing when we used to cram two babies and all our worldly posessions into a mini estate). It's also a bad thing as it means I can satisfy my foolish desire to take all my worldly posessions with me wherever we go. Well nearly all.
Other people who I very much admire have the complementary skill of being able to travel light! And to live in simplicity.
If only I had the photos still, of the lawn completely covered with things I planned to get into the car and the amazing neatness with which it all fitted in...nappies and spare tyre to hand mind you.
It's to do with fear of boredom. I am horrified if confronted by the possibiity of being bored away from home. I'm not sure from where that day I'll think about it. Could be from having moved to 3 homes and five schools before I was 18?

So. We are camping in Bampton where we will fly kites, juggle and play silly games on the camp site, drink a lot, eat a lot and on Monday, watch/follow a morris team around the village all day...pausing only to eat, drink and (in my case) take a lot of pictures. (mostly pictures of the fabulous gardens and old stone houses, since I have enough pictures of morris dancers to make you wonder if I do incest too{Quote: Sir Thomas Beecham}) There will be late night long conversations (and more drinking) in the tent. There will be live music in all the pubs all weekend. there will be children everywhere. Sadly, only youngest (of ours) still comes even though it's her birthday this weekend. But she will bring GB and who knows, maybe that will be a continuity. There will be seething crowds of people we've seen year in and year out and have only nodding acquaintance with.
We've been doing this for 32 years and consequently have many good friends in the village as well as the crowd who turn up every year like us so there will be catching up to do as well.
My favourite quote from all those years was from a local publican when asked on a friday night when was closing time. "Oh about 3 oclock on Tuesday"
Er, I will be coming home on Saturday afternoon to go to music group and collect all those things which asorted people forgot to bring and need to borrow and also to collect the giant pork pie made by our local butcher which some twenty people share on Monday. But I may not have time to come here. so have a fabulous weekend everyone. See you next week (Tuesday ish when the pubs close).

I love walled gardens...with mansions probably hiding behind them.

I think this qualifies as a tree mansion?

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Night lights

Last year when we had the giant family party (another of which is planned for this year) I bought some solar lights so that campers could at least guess where the steps ought to be. To my surprise, they continued to glow on and off through the winter and seem to be doing well.
The herb garden bath on the other hand never did very well after it's first year but was a convenient place to stick a nightlight. I must say it looks a lot better than it does here in daylight.
Now I'm going to print this* and then practise my fiddle. Poor thing has been abandoned too often while blogging was going on.

*If I can find the original that is.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The last day approaches

I had a funny old day at work today. Boss is on holiday till the end of the month and so I got quite a lots of daily stuff entered and organised. I can't anticipate from one moment to the next whether I'm going to think, "this other person is going screw up everything I've done" or "I've never known where to put these payments I bet the new person will know exactly what to do with them and I bet she'll know how to do all sorts of things much faster than I can". I can even see where she will save time and how I would too if only I knew a bit more.
Fact is it's going to hurt me if she screws up my (Boss's of course, not mine at all) nice tidy accounts and it's going to hurt me if she copes easily. And anyway I won't be in a position to know. That's going to hurt me too. (when I got to this thought I nearly went home...that is to say, nearly persuaded the stupid and unco-operative backing up/networking system to do me a couple of CDs and a hard drive back least we don't have to back up to 5 floppies any more...I mean she won't have to..or Boss won't have to...whoever).
The nub of it is, I know when there's something odd about the data I'm being it looks a lot like an proforma invoice we had two months ago but it's a different amount. Aha, one of the cello cases is missing otherwise it's the same invoice. It's an update. This unidentified cardnet slip is probably a bow rehair...but is it for the invoice that's been filed as unpaid or is it for one that hasn't been made out because the customer didn't need one. or is it that invoice for a different repair that's been hanging around for six months? Will she know?
On the other hand. I suspect that these insurance payments aren't all personal at all even though Boss thinks they are, but I don't know how they should be entered. I don't know where these amounts for lunches and stuff should go but they've been paid for with the company debit card. She'll know.
And at the root of it all, the stuff that comes out of the machine is garbage. Some of it. GIGA notwithstanding. Anything I've entered, I can find and identify and say why it's there. Anything the programme does with it is beyond me.

We live and learn. I've never lost a job before though I've left loads. I never thought I'd care about a lot of numbers and bits of paper or that I'd give a toss about losing a job for the job's sake. Now I'm learning that I do.

OK. I've had a whinge. I'll keep quiet about it for a while. Sorry if it's dull :)
Barney's Wisteria
Coming home after rain

and looking out in the evening sun

I have been warned!

that we were going to have a power cut on Friday.

So just now, I was in the middle of an extremely *witty and thought provoking* post about life, the universe and not swimming today. I had just written, "all your plans will be subject to outside interference and change without warning...."** When the power cut out.
In case you hadn't noticed or cared (why should you) it's Tuesday. Not Friday.

When people first started using digital imaging creatively I expect they were as excited about being able to do this sort of thing as I am. So OK, it's old hat now but that's fine because all my hats are old (except the one I bought at Fairport last year).

(and doesn't it go well with the blog decor :)

Oh. alright, here's the hat.

*I can assure you of this since you are never going to have the opportunity to judge for yourselves.

**Prescient, me.

Monday, May 22, 2006

The sun in the woods

(There's a pub near us called that).
After I shopped this afternoon, the sun came out and clouds chased it around a good bit.
When I got to this bit of the road, I thought

Cor, that's lovely.
You always say that just here when the sun's out.
You ought to have taken a picture of it.
You still could if you turned round and went back.

So I did. And had to wait for the sun to escape from the clouds and stand in the middle of the road (couldn't have done that on a week day) watching the cloud shadows and sunlight moving along till it got to the right bit.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Procrastinating the days away

Funny how a job that needs to be done can become an excuse not to do something else.
Like, I need to update my blogroll, can't till I've worked out what other changes I want, Oh, there's some obscure reference I wanted to check before changing that, Oops, I haven't visited that blog for a long time......ending up with, well I can't go there till I've updated my blogroll. Dead neat. Now I can't do any of it.

Well I finally broke the circle, updated the blog roll (sorry if there are still people missing, I'll get round to it :) and made miniscule changes. Such a fuss over so little!

The two new links to Barney Bardsley are not to the same person. Barney and his two siblings were all three being called Barney at one time, causing a good deal of confusion both to their Mum and their friends. My Barney's name just got mangled out of Bardsley, his younger brother presumably got landed with it when he followed in big brother's educational footsteps and younger sister hijacked it for her own professional purposes.
Anyway I said I'd link the thatching site and there it is just underneath SiL's Tai Chi website. If you live in the Leeds area and want to learn Tai Chi or Yoga or any of the other disciplines mentioned on her site, she's a brilliant teacher. Also a brilliant writer.
And if you live in Berkshire or the surounding countryside and want a thatcher, obviously, you need Barney :)*
And here are Adam and Barney working harmoniously together on the magnificent structure shown in the finished state here.

Today, it's pouring with rain. The window shows a green wet world running down the panes. Very nice from in here. However, I need milk! I could also do with a few other bits and some fresh veg for dinner but only the milk is essential! I could get the milk from the garage about 2 miles away. Or I could go into Newbury and get all the bits and pieces..about 6 miles. Which would save me time tomorrow.

*My Barney, that is.

Update: in case anyone's even remotely interested, I went the whole hog and shopped so we had fresh (ish) veg with the Sunday roast.
And then inspired by successful blog changing, started the mammoth task of backing up a million photos to CD. Which is fun because then I get to choose a picture to print on the CD. Lots of CDs. 6 so far and way to go.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Off! off! off!

Today. I took it. From everything (except my fiddle lesson which counts as fun and company).
Last night I didn't take my phone up to bed to alarm me, I didn't get up when it didn't ring and when I got up (whenever it was) I didn't look at the time or get showered and dressed until after a leisurely coffee and reading most of a book (Sunshine by Robin McKinley. I recommend if you like vampires). (I did feed the cats though).
Then I didn't even look at the computer or the letter box or the washing up or the dirty clothes for another hour or two. Or the possible dinner stuff. I didn't go to work, I didn't feel guilty about not doing anything and I didn't really finish getting up until after I'd finished the book and had lunch.
Then I quickly and efficiently (if you knew me you'd laugh here) sorted out a bit of washing and a bit of tidying and my fiddle...oh and a shopping list...and went and had a very nice and difficult fiddle lesson. And bought dinner and a nice bottle of wine (Aussie Shiraz, Chateau Reynella). Now I'm cooking and drinking and wondering whether to go on taking the day off tonight or whether to take advantage of feeling hugely better and more relaxed and practise my fiddle and back up my photos. Or read another book.
I feel a bit like this.

As for this, can I take it home now in the back of the car? OK, I'll take it.

Oh if only...

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Very good plans

But very poor execution of them.
I had plans today and did other things instead, like trying out a new programme which WHSmiths was offering at half price the other day. It does most of the things that picasa does but also (Hooray) will arrange picture to print several to a page without cropping them arbitrarily.It's not as quick as picasa and I can see that between it (photoshop album) picasa and windows I'm going to be chasing pictures around the computer for days and nights. I'm not sure if the two programmes will pay any attention to each's getting a bit like
"windows, will you see if Photoshop has the salt"
"photoshop, have you got the salt?"
"yes but it's in a non-compatible salt cellar, you'll have to tell picasa to empty it into a grinder before using it"
"er, picasa, photo shop says you can only have it in a salt cellar"
"oh that's no good, I can't get salt out of those, could you tip it into this grinder for me"
"photoshop, have you gone to sleep or what? give me that salt cellar so I can pass it back. What d'you mean it's on another shelf? Why can't you keep it on the same shelf picasa does?"
" "
"photo shop??? anyone at home??"

(that's me). I don't know why blogger has put all that space there.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

A dark smelly secret to share.

I love Eau de Cologne. Not just because of the old fashioned turquoise and gold but also the scent. It takes me back to my aged Aunties and childhood shopping and doing dreadful things with Mum's perfume when her back was turned. (and, Like Youngest with the hair dye and the bleach, trying to undo my wickedness with something even stronger than the original sin). I don't think my teddy ever forgave me. She still stinks of assorted perfumes.

And what's more I loathe things that smell of cucumber and melons. Not to mention strawberries and grapefruit. If I wanted to smell like a fruit, well I don't.

I'm chronologically challenged at the moment. So here's a pic from Lancaster at night

And a couple more from the reed beds. Which don't seem to have a lot of reed in them at the moment. But I do like the wiggly fence.

Anyway, I daren't go visiting other blogs tonight as I have to take the dog and the cat to the vet for upgrades...nonono the morning. Early. And I can't visit without at least thinking for a long time about comments even tho I often leave with comment undone!
But I'll think of you all :)

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


Today I collected some.
The trick is to get close enough without knocking the raindrop off the leaf.
Since I am clumsy, this means being out in the rain so that more raindrops become available as my success rate is about 1 in 10.
Change of clothes also required, as it's also necessary to wait till the wind stops waving the leaves about and until new drops have formed. Well I never thought it was easy to get those amazing shots you see every so often, I just didn't realise it involves so much hanging around and starting again. You live and learn.
The timing is almost as complex as a sunday roast.

This one was trembling

and this one looked positively pregnant

and there was this one too.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Oh, I don't know...ducklings and rain I suppose.*

I so love this camera...look! droplets of water** :)

It's raining today. Which is fine really, the garden needs rain to grow to it's full jungley potential. Also it means Nutmeg won't spend more than a few minutes out in the wet before pleading to be let back in. He is such a wimp.

I spent most of Saturday doing stuff with the printer. I bought some postcard printing paper a while ago, thinking I could make use of some of my prints. Unfortunately the paper is rubbish. The pics came out as if through a screen of mud. In fact a methodical trial of every kind of paper I posess showed that the best results...possibly the only acceptable results, come from Canon's own brand pro paper. Not really suitable for postcards and only usable as greeting cards if stuck on some sort of matt background. So I now have some five or six pages of prints of GB looking enchanting but sort of greenish, in the playground.
But also several deeply satisfying glossy A4 size prints from various things I've posted here.
I also discovered that though Picasa does a nice 4 to a page arrangement, if the pictures have been cropped in any way, it just rounds them down, as it were, to fit the space. So instead of having a long thin picture in a long fat space, it gives me 2/3rds of a picture blown up to fit the space. Why on earth couldn't it just leave the picture as it was?
Adobe on the other hand will put 4 pictures on a page in the right proprtions. But only 4 of the same picture.
It just goes to show that specific design only works if you're the right kind of specific. I never am. Which is why all my trousers have bits taken in round the waist and tucked up at the ends.
I need a zoom cloud.***

*Title...haven't got time for them.
**I hope you can see them.
***nothing to do with printing or ducklings, I just need one.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Here be dragons

Oh all right then, geese .

The other evening I went to the Thatcham reed beds to take pictures. The geese were setting off at regular intervals from one pond, presumably to settle for the night in another. I was somewhere in the middle. There was a lot of honking and chattering from both ends and they passed overhead at regular intervals. It all sounded rather frantic and disorganised. I thought they might be shouting "right we're off now" "see you later" ", yeah, see you later" "Well I'm going now right!" "yeah, me too" "hey, see you in a minute" "Oh good, yes, we're all here" "except you two" "and the other six" "Ok, well we'll see you in a minute" "Oh are you going? I might come in a minute"
Anyway, with so much warning I eventually managed to get a shot as these two passed above me.

Considering that the water was mostly a bit stagnant looking and the light wasn't anything special, the thatcham reed beds turned out quite photogenic.

As was the track leading to another reed bed which I hadn't time to investigate.

While I was babbling on about pictures, the Sunday dinner seems to have arrived at a point where I need to pay attention. There's a lot of bubbling and steam and crisp looking stuff. So I'd better do something to it...possibly serve and eat it.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

If it's not one thing it's another three.

I thought I was going to do a lot of useful things today but instead I started reading Hy Brasil by Margaret Elphinstone. It's delightful.

There used to be swathe of Wood Anemones along the bank up the road and then they cut down the trees, dragged the hedge away and left the place bare of anenemones. this annoyed me a lot because I've always wanted to have wild anemones in the garden but sternly refused to dig any up and plant them at home because a) I have brown fingers and b) it's illegal. Now, not only do I have none but there are only a dozen or so left where once there were hundreds. They don't like being disturbed and I don't think they'll come back. Bah!

This looks inviting. One day I shall explore it.

Once, I had three small children (now they are older and not children any more. Well done all of us).
When I was pregnant with the third, one afternoon I indulged in a little rest while the two older ones watched the telly (yes, yes I know, dreadful). After a while two small people came and woke me up with expressions full of something a bit ominous. Come and look Mummy they caroled. I came and looked and they had very very kindly washed the kitchen for me (floor to work top inclusive) with neat washing up liquid. Of which there was none left. There was a lot of foam and sliminess. Did I laugh or howl!! Yes. and then we all wiped it off with kitchen paper. and damp cloths. And teatowels and bath towels.
Youngest had a small friend and when they were about 14, they spent long happy hours in youngest's room, doing whatever they do at that age, talking about boys, tidying, untidying, leaving half empty mugs and glasses around. All that sort of thing. And trying out perfume a lot it seemed to me. Particularly something awful called tobacco flower. After a while I became convinced that this tobacco flower was in fact a smoke screen. Now I knew Youngest didn't smoke because she'd told me often how disgusting it was and how she'd never do it. So it had to be the little friend. And I thought her mum must know, really, she ought to do something about it and is she A Bad Influence. But was too embarrassed to mention it.
Some years later, I mentioned this smoking friend to Youngest and she said Oh no mum, H never was me. So all that time, H's mum must have been thinking, how awful that yougest's mum doesn't stop her smoking, and worrying about the bad influence that Youngest was having on H.
One afternoon, Youngest vanished into the bathroom for a long time and there were noises of taps and water and splashing followed by long silences and scurries of activity. I was next door sorting out some paperwork. Vaguely wondering what youngest was doing in there and how much longer she would be. The bathroom door opened and there was the sound of youngest going next door to middle one's room. There was muffled conversation and then both of them went back into the bathroom and the door closed. A brief silence and then "Oh My God!!!" from middle one. More muffled conversation and scurrying.
All this gradually permeated into my consciousness and suddenly I put it all together in my head and the words Hair Dye came into my mind. I really don't want to know, I thought. Has she gone green? Has she lost all of it? I waited.
Middle one came into the room, cautiously. Mum, she said, you'd better come and look. you mustn't be cross with her, she didn't mean to do it!!!
Actually the bright red hair looked pretty good. It was the bright rust coloured spots on the cream carpet, each neatly surrounded by a freshly bleached white patch that left me speechless. For a moment.
Eldest was a curious little boy...always liked trying things out. He liked to do practical experiments. So if he was quiet for a long time I would suddenly be galvanised into urgent investigation. One day I couldn't find him. After searching most of the rooms in the house I went back to his room and this time found him....underneath his bed, carefully nurturing a small fire in a tin lid and making wild and wonderful shapes with candle wax into it.
The amazing thing is, we all live to tell these tales.

Friday, May 12, 2006

This little pencils thing is weird.
When I open the blog they're not there but if I look at an archive they suddenly reappear. I'm not sure if the quick editing will be all that quick if I have to do it by opening and archive post first.
Anyone know what I'm doing wrong?

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Shhh, don't look now.....

My little pencils are back....I don't want to frighten them away again.

My head is either empty

or overflowing with trivia at the moment.
On the other hand, all my camera cards are full.
So, a bit of Spring green,

A lot of little pictures (I couldn't decide which version I liked best so you get them all...well nearly all anyway)

and Lancaster at night.*

Meanwhile, Gorgeous Babe has given Barney her cold, the lovely Frangelita is 100 and my potential replacement at work came to look the place over yesterday.

It's hard being a gnome**

I am not the vagrant!***
Good night.

*Actually it's mostly Morecambe Bay from Adam and Jude's Lancaster rooftop.
**(Peter Cook and Dudley Moore, a long time ago)
*** Patricia Hayes as Edna the inebriate woman an even longer time ago in the Play for today series on the good old Beeb.

Actually, having looked at my own link I should probably mention that I am not currently an alcoholic (honest), nor is my impending joblessness likely to throw me into vagrancy. It's just a thing we used to say a lot.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

I've just realised it's 00.46

So I won't post five or six pictures and burble on for half an hour.
But we took GB to the park on sunday and she had a good time eating ice-cream which seemed to give her energy for a complicated and exhausting circuit of the climbing frame thingie. The exhaustion being all mine, following her round, being ready for disaster and intercepting assorted small children who were either faster or slower than her (to avoid collisions and arguments). Also preventing an even smaller person from stepping off the edge into thin air (as he had just seen a much older boy sliding down the pole and felt sure he should do this too, only he was too small to reach the pole).
I was a bit indignant about the total absence of any parent following this particular small person around as he was much too small and fearless to be on the thing by himself. In my grandparently opinion. Unfortunately my own responsibility prevented me from approaching every other adult in the area to demand that someone else look after the little tyke as GB set off puposefully for the swings. oof! keep going Grandma, follow that small pink and white blur!
I've just realised I should have picked up the small person and tucked him nder my arm and just yelled "whose is this??" But away went Gb and I had to follow
Later I grabbed a picture in the garden.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

quick pics

I'm knackered. Got up early to welcome expected arrival of Gorgeous Babe and she was late so I did loads of housework and then she arrived (Barney was out this morning) so I was completely taken over till afternoon...though it was all useful time, she helped me put the washing away and tidy various rooms which kept us both occupied!
Then went to music group, collecting Norman and Dorothy on the way.
Norman is a large gentle young man with aspergers syndrome and Dorothy is an elderly darling. Neither of them is at all stupid, however, they are somewhat conversationally challenged. They witter away at each other for the next fifteen minutes like a parrot talking to a budgie. Their conversation...Oh I wish I could remember more of it.
Dorothy "did you go to the concert the other night it was very good the young man played the clarinet or was it an oboe I forget which and he was called something like you know the man who's on the TV series on Friday nights do you watch it....
Norman, "did you have cakes?...
Dorothy "no but we had very nice little snacks and peanuts and things...
Norman "like charlie Brown. I watched a DVD in my flat last night with Charlie Brown. it was very good, then I had a beer and I lost my guinea pig....
Dorothy " Oh yes, there's a bird in that cartoon isn't there. they had an eagle owl in the shopping centre on wednesday or was it thursday I forget oh it must have been thursday because that's when the bus goes past the end of the road....
Norman "where do you wait for the bus? just up the road do you that's where I get my bus to work....
Dorothy "they're very good the buses from here to Newbury the owl was called agnes I think and it was quite happy to be awake during the day....
Norman" I saw a lot of owls once when my mum and dad and me went to (?) at night and their eyes shone like little candles in the trees they're nocturnal aren't they
Dorothy "yes they eat mice and things don't they only mice go out in the daytime don't they I suppose the owls rest then do you think we could live as long as owls if we slept in the day I suppose we might.....
Norman " I get really tired in the afternoon at work but it's alright because....
Dorothy "I suppose you would if you started early and you had to catch a bus or something you'd have to start even earlier then wouldn't you if it was an early bus I mean....
Norman "the squirrels are nice........
I arrived at the music group in need of a short period of solitude in order to quell hysteria and stop my mind flapping wildly after the assorted threads of their conversation.
So then we played for a couple of hours and Norman and Dororthy enlivened the proceedings with assorted non sequiters and by asking every question again just after it's been answered like a pair of echoes.....
Then I piled them and their fiddles and bags and (in Henry's case, extremely long legs) back in the car to drive them back.
It's one of my weekly doses of insanity.

Er...Oh yes. Then I got back to relieve an exhausted Grandad and to discuss what people wear under their shirts and trousers with gorgeous babe, feed her, bed her and read story. By this time my voice is a croak and my brain is a sponge. or a mushroom, I forget which and anyway the bus carries owls to newbury on thursdays doesn't it especially when the TV presenter eats cake and plays the clarinet or was it....oops. Shut up woman, you're getting hysterical again!

Aah. Waiting for Blogger. That Harold Pinter was well before his time eh?
Well I've got to be up with the birds and the babe tomorrow so probably no pictures, post or comments tonight.

Somewhat later, blogger relented.
More wild and windy stuff at the Prestolee aquaduct on the abandoned Bolton and Blackburn (?) Bury (?) canal.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

my little pencils have gone again.

Until I knew I could have them I just put up with the publish /curse /edit/republish /curse/edit/etc/etc..give up and leave it the way it is syndrome. Now I want easy editing and little pencils on my blog. *Stamp*
I haven't quite finished with the wild windy North...some pics I took while not watching the coco dancers.

I bet it's all green there now and sunny with fluffy clouds :)

Oh I'm being so good!

I've crossed three boring jobs off the list (done them too) and recklessly booked a hair cut for Friday. The thing about short hair is, it gets too long much more quickly than long hair. Needs more services but less daily maintenance. And you never know if the mechanic will get it right.
So I mustn't spend ages here. I'm on a roll. Have to get more jobs done so I can make a bigger list for tomorrow.

I know the last picture is just some ruts in a field but I was taken with the ribbony look of them :)
Ooh, I thought my blog wouldn't do that quick edit thing, tried to get it to give me a little pencil for ages last night. And blow me, today it's there. Works too!
Maybe I won't decamp to wordpress after all.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


Monday, May 01, 2006

What shall we do for bank holiday

He said.

I had already declined, nicely, to get up at 5.00 am to go to Oxford and join the hung-over revellers from various May festivals and balls in listening to the singing at dawn on the roof of a tower. I'm sure it's lovely. I just can't bring myself to think of dawn without a shiver.

We thought about it for a day or two and I suggested Kite hunting in the Chilterns and a nice pub we saw last time we were there.
He suggested some other things but then decided against them because I wouldn't be interested (the Watercress Railway Line for instance which I'm sure would have been a nice trip and would have given me food for photos).
So we went kite hunting in the Chilterns and found an extremely nice pub for lunch (for once we started looking for it before lunchtime and were able to get a nice meal in a pleasant garden, sitting down). We stopped on the way to look at the Maharajah's well in Stoke Row (which has a sweet story about some well off Englishman and the Maharajah of Benares building wells in each other's countries because they were concerned about each other's thirsty people.
After lunch at the Bull&Butcher in Turville

we got a bit daring and went to the Hell Fire Caves near Wycombe. Very tame and tidy they were. Barney used to do caving at Uni and I got taken down one once and we like them a bit more dark and slippery with real stalactites and narrow bits and bats for preference.
And the blurb on the walls about the Hell Fire Club didn't sound very lurid at all.
Though there was a funny moment when a young woman in a wedding dress hurtled past us, screaming. Not a ghost we decided, much too solid.
This lady has been there so long she's grown moss. It looks sort of cosy.

We went to the top of the tower on the church on the hill to admire spectacular views. I was very, very brave and let go of the middle bit and held the camera with both hands and sbut my eyes. Photos duly came out. I can only assume the camera has no fear of heights.

Well done that camera.

The stairs in the church tower.

Then we found kites and my afternoon, at least, was complete.