Showing posts from April, 2017

April Scavenger Hunt

I mean to do this every month, but somehow it never happens. I can see another six months has passed since I joined in. Linking to Kate 1. New ...a webcam. This has been recommended as one of the best ways to keep in touch when our son heads off to Bangladesh for three months. I shall be pleased to be able to "see" him as well as speak to him every couple of weeks. Sometimes I curse technology, but Skype is fantastic. 2. Rust ...this is actually a paint effect called faux tina. Seen in Brighton last year. 3.  Box ...this glass box contains the London skyline made up of coffee related waste. It's part of a campaign to draw attention to the appallingly low recycling rates in this area. 4.  Ingredients ...what you need to be a Morris Dancer. The tankard is not obligatory, but show me a dancer without one...they are a very rare breed! 5.  Begins with D .....This is Dobbin who lives at the NT property, Standen.

The Great Dictator

I found this quote in a book I've read recently. Simply liked it. It was said by Charlie Chaplin at the end of the film  "The Great Dictator". This was in 1940 yet its sentiment is oh so modern. "We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical, our cleverness hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness..." Anyone want to start a revolution with me?👊 Arilx

It's a tough gig....

...but hey somebody has to dance with this lot. I shall heave my carcass out of bed at some ungodly hour on Monday [having had a late night Saturday and an even earlier start on Sunday....this 50 year old bird is mighty glad she has a day off on Tuesday to recover👵], strap on some bells and do some stick clashing whilst accompanied by this lot down at Hastings. Of course, I don't enjoy it one little bit😆 Kempshott Hunt. Recorded at our local on Saturday. The dancers are to be seen "relaxing" [drinking in popular parlance] in the background having done two sets in unexpectedly warm temperatures. Another really great stand. Arilx

23rd April

Tonight at 6.45 the monthly vigil will be held at the Crossbones Graveyard just a stone's throw away from Southwark Cathedral. Poems will be read and ribbons tied on the railings to remember all those on the fringes of society who were buried without honour in this piece of unconsecrated ground. The earliest bodies were those of the anonymous Winchester Geese. These were the prostitutes who worked in the stews [brothels] in this area of pleasure seeking which was beyond the walls of the City of London and outside its jurisdiction. Ruled over by the Bishop of Winchester, they plied their trade legitimately and he earned income from the taxes he levied from them. Most it is believed died from syphilis or in childbirth. This area continued to be in use as a more general mass grave for paupers until it was shut down in 1853. It lay forgotten until 1993 when excavations for the Jubilee Line started to unearth the bodies and it is now reckoned that it contains about 15000 people,


Recently I shared my dislike of slugs . At the bottom of the post I mentioned in passing my equal distaste for the komodo dragon and the blind mole rat. A friend has flagged up this article about the latter. I guess I have to give the ugly little blighters a modicum of respect after finding out about their rather impressive survival skills! Much as I think every creature is fully entitled to its place on the planet [I often think humans deserve theirs the least] it still doesn't endear them to me, but I will accept [grudgingly] that I do need to soften my stance a little. Shan't be having one as a pet anytime soon though👿👿 Arilx

Black Box

This was a first for me. The phone boxes are painted black to denote that they are within the city of London. Arilx

Seeing Southwark Cathedral

At last I have material with which to write up a report of a recent jolly which we managed to shoe horn in between work and running commitments. Huzzah! We've been a-wandering along the South Bank and nosing around the Square Mile in our glorious Capital. Having snouted around prior to our visit to see what else was in the area beyond the walk our son had paid for [Xmas pressie], my eye alighted upon Southwark Cathedral...a far quieter "attraction" than either St Paul's or Westminster. Entry is by donation a big fat tick from me then! Having served the majority of its time as a parish church, it only gained cathedral status in 1905. It's seen periods of neglect and with the Victorian zeal for improvement [call that by and large sanitised and dull] it's not a building with the greatest impact. Mr GBT commented that the vaulted ceiling is more similar than it should be to the Victorian sewers running below the London streets! Thankfully tho

Bright Monday

I rather like this name used for Easter Monday by the Eastern Orthodox Church. A day without commitments saw us and a dear friend who has been through a very troubled time of late, take the opportunity to get out and enjoy the local village woodlands for a short while. It was rather overcast and chilly yet signs of new life abound....I am enthralled by the different shades of green mantle emerging on the trees. They're all wearing a light fuzz at the moment so the light still gets through to the woodland floor. More unusually the oak is ahead of the ash this year...maybe the promise of only a splash will mean a dry summer this year! The slowly unfurling bracken...the still tightly packed fronds at the base put me in mind of an ammonite fossil. Caution! Fairy flowers....the local countryside is gloriously awash with bluebells at the moment. Treasure. H immediately spotted it's a woodpecker feather. Into the pot of woodland treasures it goes...if only I cou

Going For Gold

Hope everybody is having a relaxing break. My plan for today is to remain horizontal for as long as I can decently get away with it having had a couple of busier days so far. Yesterday we were here at Dorney Lake where the 2012 rowing was held. 'Twas another day of blue face paint and running Smurfs. One more to go. He's still very embarrassed when he's in costume and once again he was the only one. He did relax a bit though when he realised that he had kudos with the little ones there when he was asked by one of the parents if they could take his photo with them. I am delighted that he's now exceeded his fundraising target. Gold?  Ah yes that will be the gold phone box I saw on the way in through Eton just before we got there. This celebrates the success of ex pupil Constantine Louloudis who won a bronze medal in the coxless four. It's used as a book share now. We were waiting in a queue so my son just snapped it quickly on his phone for me.

Being Mugged By A Pug

Nothing pleases me more than being greeted by a friendly dog when out on our evening stroll. The other night we met Dotty, a black pug [the image here is a Pixabay one] who was ecstatic to make our acquaintance. How did I know she was friendly? Why it said so on her red harness😆 I was tickled pink! Arilx

50th Birthday Gift.

Three years ago Mr GBT and I enjoyed spending a day in Salisbury. We saw all sorts, but the highlight for me was Mompesson House. The original write up is here  What particularly caught my eye was the metamorphic toilet table. Known as the Rudd table, it's based on one owned by the infamous forger and erstwhile 18th century courtesan, Margaret Caroline Rudd. Since 2005 Mr GBT has worked as a miniature furniture maker. It was never meant to be a full time job, but the redundancy axe fell and with no further openings in his narrow field of expertise we had to adapt. Many sensible souls would have had a business plan, but we've never fallen into that category. Instead every piece he makes has been based upon my gut reaction to furniture that I see just when we're out and about...he designs the first piece for me and in my dollshouse it goes. This was one of those occasions, but he now has an 18 month wai

Roadtesting Recipes

I have a slightly different approach to menu planning than the average person. To be honest I don't think I've ever opened a new cookery book and thought "yippee"...instead my thought process goes something along the lines of this..... 1. What ingredients are needed? Now I don't mind buying something different as I'm not a creature of habit when it comes to eating....I want to try all sorts. What I don't want is a one off thing which will sit at the back of the cupboard, forgotten and mouldering away, pricking my conscience every time I rediscover it. 2. Are the instructions easy and clear to follow....don't tell me half way down "to add the cooked chicken" when you have failed to mention at any point that something needs to be precooked/marinaded until I'm half way through....I could break the world discus record chucking a frying pan if I was riled enough believe you me💪 3. How expensive is it? I don't have Heston Blumethal&

Blowing Your Own Trumpet!

I don't play an instrument, but this could tempt me🎷 For those in the know can anyone confirm if this is a tuba? Enjoy the sunshine today! Arilx P.S. I have now discovered that this eccentric busker is called Fire Tuba! He is a Polish chap called Christopher Werkowicz. It would seem he has quite a following!


Not much of the stuff I like to write about going on right now. We're pretty much working, decorating, prepping for the Bangladesh trip. Very busy, but nowt worthy of reporting. Am enjoying the lighter evenings and the wild flowers in the verges greatly though. Never fear though there are plans in the pipeline, so more tales to tell in the near future. For now then may I just wish you all a happy weekend and shuffle off leaving a couple of random photos of the papier mache wishing well in the "Two Feathers" Native American shop down in Brighton. I did ask permission before I took the photos. Arilx

Tracking It Down

There's been a track I used to enjoy as a student in the 1980s, but haven't been able to remember the details of [how I do love thee holey old menopausal memory!]. Once in a while I'd catch a snatch of it on the radio when driving, but always missed the announcement of what it was. I've wracked my brains and tried various bands which I knew I was into at the time....that in itself has been an interesting experience so discover how my taste has changed. Some I still loved...others, well frankly they made my ears bleed! Thankfully I now have it due to some kind listener choosing it as part of their personal choice on one of the programmes. This was my version of the era.... The Cult "She Sells Sanctuary" Mystery solved! Arilx

Running Around In Circles!

Not me, but the teenogre. He's completed his first half marathon in Croydon today for his rapidly approaching trip abroad. Accompanied by his aged parents his greatest concern? Being the only one in fancy dress. Yeah well he's 18 isn't he! I confidently assured him on the train that I was sure there would be somebody else in costume [keeping everything crossed...oh the half truths we feed our children!], so sod's law ensured that he was the only one. I think in retrospect it was actually a bit of a blessing because he was running on his own, and not knowing anyone, it got people talking to him asking what he was up to and laughing with him in all his get up. As for us two, we had to keep ourselves amused while he slogged round the route a couple of times....due to the clement conditions we were able to take a leisurely stroll. We did witness the ambulance cyclists pedal past us at high speed at one chap had collapsed, hopefully he recovered quickly.

About as useful as.....

...a chocolate tea pot or a cardboard welly? These are the two I use. More digging has revealed further examples [there are many more far ruder ones out there]..... Perhaps a glass hammer, rubber lips on a woodpecker [uttered by Gary Burbank playing the fictional Earl Pitts], a screen door on a submarine takes your fancy? Or you prefer these ones...a newspaper raincoat, Captain Hook at a gynaecological convention, mudguards on a tortoise or maybe none! My personal favourite is a knitted condom.....of course, the knitting pattern exists to make your very own one should you be so inclined. Thus it will come as no surprise that I have taken it upon myself to provide the link.... I can go to great lengths to avoid the ironing sometimes! Arilx