Friday, 19 January 2018

My New Co-pilot

I'm not known for my sartorial elegance .
Nowadays my somewhat eclectic attire is complemented by a large pair of Princess Leia headphones through which I listen to London's talk radio station when Mary and I take our daily power walk.
I know I look a knob, but I don't care.
They also keep my ears warm in cold weather.

This morning as Mary and I stopped at the top field above the village to take in the view,
farmer Basil stopped his van briefly on his way to feed his ewes
We chatted for a short time and Mary climbed into my lap
" That little bitch loves you!" He remarked.


Thursday, 18 January 2018

For Lee



Mary licked Winnie's earwax for most of the late afternoon

The Sins Of Youth

Mr Bradly is on the far right


I was thinking today that this internet thingamajig should come with a health warning.
I am sure the MP Ben Bradly is thinking the same this morning as his blog comments, written when he was 21 years old came back to bite him in the arse.
Mr Bradly was promoted in Theresa May's recent minister "shuffle" and at 28 he has taken on the mantle of "Conservative Vice Chair for Youth". Unfortunately a comment about the sterilization of men on welfare, a nasty and ill advised comment no doubt thrown into a rant about the sponging poor, has been unearthed from blogland and it now threatens to cost him a job that he may well be very suited to.
The internet is unforgiving when it comes to quotes. If it is there in black and white it's there...plain and simple, even if it was written when God was a boy.
I have no thoughts on Ben Bradly one way or another. He may well still hold his youthful views for all I know but I would like to think that he does not.
My thinking, views and prejudices are very different now than they were when I was 21 that's for sure. My saving grace is that my gauche thoughts on the universe were never published on line for the universe to reread forever.
Inspector Javert never forgave Jean Valjean for stealing a loaf of bread despite all the good deeds the poor man did later in his life. Javert was like our modern media.....he never let anything go.

*****************************************************************************

In a rather different vein, the subject of disappointment has been somewhat on my mind. It was raised by an old friend who is clearly disappointed just how their life  has panned out over the years. and was shared not in a self pitying kind of way but in a matter of fact that's how it is kind of way.
I was asked if I had ever been disappointed with my lot and I changed the subject. Not to disguise that fact that I had in any way been disappointed by life's fickle ways but it was to hide the fact that I hadn't .
I didn't want to sound smug.
On the morning dog walk I got to thinking of just when I was last disappointed ?
ok I was miffed that the Mathew Bourne ballet was cancelled on my last visit to London ...oh and I remember feeling hurt and disappointed when a friend I once held very dear gave me a cheap bunch of petrol station flowers for a birthday but that was over a decade ago, and I was being Queeny.
One thought did come to mind when I put some more effort into the question
and it was a moment in New York.
I wanted to somehow reinact this wonderful scene at Grand Central Station


little did I realise that the New Skyscrapers that surround 42nd street now block out all of the light.

I am easily pleased

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Lonely Tsar


I heard today we have a new minister for loneliness
Tracey Crouch has been given the job.....strange that seeing that she voted numerous times against increasing benefits for the long term chronically unwell and the unemployed.
But I won't be disingenuous just yet. Just having a loneliness advocate is a positive move I am sure.

I've posted this before but it is worth repeating here, that a few years ago I found myself washing an elderly lady on intensive care. She had survived a bout of sepsis and after I had successfully extubated her from the ventilator that had kept her alive for a week or so , I removed many of the invasive lines from her body and needed to "freshen her up" before allowing her to sleep.
I remember her watching me through her oxygen mask as I dabbed and dried here and there, and after I had finished combing her hair and wrapping her snugly into a blanket she croaked a brief thank you.
" That's the first time anyone has touched me in over nine years" she told me.
The phrase hit home as if I had been struck with a baseball bat

Nine years!

Waiting



I can't compete with yesterday's post.so I won't try

I am standing at the kitchen sink, looking out for the next workman to arrive.
My days recently have been filled with such waits.
This time its a roofer and he lives in the village, so I know he will turn up
I don't mind these moments as the wait facilitates the completion of those jobs that are often left.
This morning I have cleaned the oven and I am just about to make carrot and tarragon soup

Having a new kitchen means that home waits are  now a pleasure .


 The roofer arrived on time! I have time to make red pepper and lentil soup too

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

The Power Of Meatballs

enjoy......

Would You Believe It?


Going Gently Has been going for eleven years! ELEVEN BLOODY YEARS!
Can You bloody well believe it....?

So far, boosted no doubt by internet malfunctions It has had 6 million hits! SIX MILLION
How wonderfully nerdish is that?
Ok, it's brittle and shallow and indulgent,
And a view of a small life in an even smaller world
But it IS a generally honest view of how I see my life......it really is
And that's a fact that I am rather proud of !

Monday, 15 January 2018

I Never Knew Liquorice Was A Root Until today




I feel ready to learn something new.
A new skill, a new set of facts, a new way of doing things.......I'm not bothered what
It's just finding the right thing.
I fancy Spanish or perhaps painting.....or a degree in something stimulating.
My fingers are too chubby for me to learn the piano but if weave can learn the Ukulele perhaps I could?
Or what about a cooking course? Naming Garden flowers? Or Pilates ?
I could learn pottery, wood skills or plumbing?
( I'm colourblind so anything electrical is a no no)
Or Something in a English literature perhaps...

The world's my lobster

Sunday, 14 January 2018

So Long


Today another blogger bit  the dust.
Unlike hippo- on the lawn , who just disappeared mysteriously with a festering thigh wound, debts and half the African mafia after him, Rachel popped away from blogland with a short whimper of  " I've had enough" which is a shame.
It is sad, for we will miss her idiosyncratic style, her paintings, her chatty blogs about nothing in particular and her humour.
Bloggers come and go. Some get tired . Some die, and some.......some  move on with their lives....

Choking On A Swedish Meatball et al

Winnie nearly choked to death on a Swedish meatball last night.
Such was the excitement of the moment, that she had no idea of what was happening and continued to get into position alongside the other dogs in order to receive the next morsel.
Luckily she has a mouth the size of an average gin trap , so I coolly inserted my whole hand into her mouth and plucked the meatball from her oesophagus before her lips went blue.
Not fazed she gulped it down almost immediately.
A near death experience should not prevent a girl finishing her meatball!

I tell you this, only as a bit of a comic aside
I'm in the kitchen pottering as a roast dinner cooks.
The Prof is reviewing a PhD in his office.

Some people have a lovely way of speaking don't you think?
I experienced this phenomenon this morning when I spied Mr A working away in his garden.
Mr A is a farmer and had lost his mother recently and although I had sent my condolences I had not physically seen him to talk to.
This morning we talked.
I asked him how he was feeling, and after a pause, and in that slight sing-song Welsh way of speaking only the North Walian's do, he said slowly
" The heavy veil of sadness has lifted from me  just a little" 
Richard Burton couldn't have said it any better

Saturday, 13 January 2018

Darkest Hour



I expected to love Darkest Hour, I really did.
But I only liked it, which was a pity.
I thought I knew the preamble to Winston Churchill's " We'll fight them on the beaches" speech,
But as it turns out I knew nothing of the old buffer's prickly relationship with King George VI , and the manoeuvring  of his cabinet members Viscount Halifax and Neville Chamberlain as they tried to dispose him.
The play with these four key characters made for riveting viewing with the peace loving Halifax ( a wonderful  Stephen Dillane) being more than a match for the flawed but battling old minister!
Ronald Pickup also lends some depth and pathos to his all too brief role as the dying Chamberlain
However ,the introduction of Lily James as Churchill's sweet new secretary and Kristen Scott Thomas as Clemmie, the long suffering and almost impossibly loyal Wife seem surplus to requirements for me as they didn't really add anything to the drama which was a shame as I like both actresses.

I almost hated the implausible sequence where Churchill met " real Londoners" in his secret jaunt on the underground. It smacked of cheap sentiment even though Gary Oldman carried the scene with great skill and a lovely twinkle in the eye, which , for me captured the real Churchill ( I imagine) quite perfectly. His performance is outstanding throughout.
Of course , it is perfect that the movie ends on the bravura " beaches" speech and I must admit I did shed a brief tear as the old Prime Minister marches out of the House of Commons amid the roars of approval by all members of the house
7/10

Era's End


I pulled the previous post because of some particularly nasty troll work.
That's enough to be said on the subject.

This morning I stopped in high street to have a good theatrical cough. 
I already told affable Despot Jason that I had consumption ( a fact he found highly amusing) so was in the middle of a good hack when I suddenly spied a " sold" sign on Auntie Glad's old house. 
I had a good sigh.
Residential home care costs are high, so it was enevitable that Plas yn Dre eventually sold but the finality of the " sold" notification outside the former grammar school built in the 1600s made me stop for a moment.
Mrs Trellis tottered past, her bobble hat perched far too high on her head. 
" The new owners will have to fill some very big shoes" she trilled
" Indeed they will" I agreed.

Friday, 12 January 2018

Silence

Put down your iPad or close your laptop.
Close your eyes and put your hands into your lap.
And listen.
What do you hear?
Even in the cottage, where the walls are 18 inches thick there is noise...distracting noise.
Bulldog snores, the click of the kitchen clock, the rumble of the farm tractor in the lane, the crow of the bachelors, the crackle of the wood burner .

I clean the Church when it's my rota week.
I don't go to Church other than that.
I don't believe in God.

Having said this , I love the little Church of St Michaels.
It's a peaceful place on a sunny but very cold Friday afternoon.
I sat for long time before hoovering and polishing as I always do.
Thinking of nothing in the stillness

And I could hear nothing...nothing at all


Hello darkness , my old friend,
I've come to talk with you again.
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain...
Still remains...
Within the sound of silence