Friday, 18 January 2019


Wow. What a grand week!. My birthday was on 13th Jan and we booked in at the excellent Golden Eagle at Ashley Green for lunch. 17 of us. It was very good and I had a lovely time. Such a good time that I was asleep by 10 pm. I think I must have been very tired........as a newt in fact.

Some pictures below of the gathering.




































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What else has happened. Well, as predicted, the rulers of this once great nation have managed a complete balls up over Europe to the extent that most of the country no longer give a flying fish whether we're in the EU or not. We've just had enough of the silly games. Ever since De Gaulle the Tories have torn themselves apart over their European policy and the only reason why Labour haven't is they don't appear to have one. If they do they're keeping very quiet about it. In fact his refusal to meet with Theresa May makes me wonder if he really is Leadership material or just an old fashioned Trade Unionist who used to play such silly games when allegedly negotiating. 
I cast my eyes along the benches of the H of C and sadly am unable to find one MP whom I think would make a good PM. The odd one is better but they are knocking on a bit. Throughout my voting life I have usually thought  if "so and so" goes then The Hon Gentleman/woman for "such and such" would be a capable successor. Not now.
UDI for Cow Roast methinks.


Then the Duke of Edinburgh is involved in a prang and the whole matter of our country's economic future disappears off the front page. Well done Phil. Love you.

Oh and he collided with a Kia. My Kia has just been valeted (£20) and fitted with lovely new floormats , a birthday present from Pam, so I'd be very pissed off to get T Boned by anybody let alone HRH.



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The other day I noticed on FaceBook an item from tv about Dom Joly and Sleep Apnoea from which I suffer. (Sleep Apnoea I mean not Dom Joly)
The following link (rather long for some reason) might be of interest to those who know nothing of the condition-
https://www.itv.com/loosewomen/dom-joly-opens-up-about-snoring-and-his-deadly-sleep-disorder-sleep-apnoea-could-have-killed-me?fbclid=IwAR07RJEVmjFR5-lXdVNT14zuwqwuz32Pp4bRfIgMlLS01b0_teqcL97pV9c

Like Mr Joly I use the CPAP machine  (Continuous positive airway pressure) and am very grateful for it. It is a nuisance especially when boating as it needs access to 240v power but one works round these things. I never travel without it, another reason why when I go anywhere overnight the aforesaid clean and carpeted Kia is full with suitcase, laptop, CPAP (for which I carry an extension lead as hotel rooms are great for not having power points anywhere near the bedside) , Yorkshire tea bags and fresh milk (ditto hotels usually have a tea bag containing the sweepings of the teaplanter's floor and that horrible milk that is sealed in small unopenable plastic buckets).


I'm off to Faversham in Kent for a couple of weeks- starting 21/1-  self catering and among other things want to visit Canterbury Cathedral. To my shame I have achieved 72 years of misspent life without ever visiting the Cathedral which given the part it has played in the history of England is an oversight to be remedied.

As the trip to Kent is self-catering I shall also take my special self-catering crate (self-cratering?) which contains essentials like Olive Oil, sachets of porridge and the item most missing from such properties....can you guess what it is? My observations of many years self-catering is that the most crucial piece of gear that is invariably missing is tongs for turning your bacon over on the grill. Unless you take your own of course in which case you'll have two tongs and can practise synchronised   turning the bacon on the grill and the black pudding in the frying pan. One gets so much pleasure from such skills. Well, I do anyway.

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Apropos of nothing for many years I had assumed that "What the Dickens" was to do with Charles Dickens but this week I learnt otherwise


 It’s simply a euphemism for “”what the devil!” In fact the expression was common centuries before Charles Dickens was born, having been used by Shakespeare in The Merry Wives of Windsor (Act II, scene 2): “I cannot tell what the dickens his name is.” It's short for "devilkins" meaning devil, demon or fiend.

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Life on the moorings has been quiet; the wildlife is fairly inactive this time of year and few people visit. Those that are here stay indoors tending their fires and meditating. One spark of excitement was yesterday when I saw a couple of chaps under the bridge by the lock. They had a landing net and were obviously fishing for something. "What have you lost" I asked. "My drone" came the reply. 
"Would a magnet help?"
After a discussion as to whether there was sufficient metal in a drone to be attractive to a magnet they decided to give it a go. I walked back to Independence and fetched my magnet leaving it with them with instructions to stick it next to my car when they'd finished. I don't know if they found it but my magnet was waiting for me when I returned. Now I've never been up close to a drone, that piece of technology has passed me by, but I suspect this is the first one that's finished up in a canal. I told you it was only a spark of excitement. I don't know why I droned on about. 
What the dickins!

I enjoyed the line about The Amazon Boss' wife leaving him. Presumably with a neighbour.
======================================= I shall not be blogging whilst in Faversham unless I get writer's block as my intention is to crack on with my project-a book about "My Life and Ten Other Favourite Jokes", a working title which at the moment is strong on jokes but a bit light on the "My Life" bit. If anyone can remember me doing anything of the slightest interest can they let me know?

Thursday, 10 January 2019

Into the New Year

I trust you are well. All of you, wherever you are-the latest blog viewing figures for yesterday are below:-

United States
53
Germany
21
Ireland
12
Russia
12
United Kingdom
7
Ukraine
4
Brazil
3
Romania
2
Unknown Region
1
Argentina
1



For some reason the UK viewers are 5th in the Wall-watching league sandwiched between Russia and Ukraine."dobro pozhalovat" to the former."Vitajemo " to the latter.
I see there is one lone Argentinian. Maradonna perhaps or some lonely gaucho out on the Pampas...either way you are welcome. Bienvenido.


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I would normally avoid the "B" subject in what is meant to be a light hearted blogpost. There is enough concern and debate and depression around; much, but not all, brought upon us by the "B" question. Try as I might not to be tempted to enter into the arena, especially with the Commons vote looming large in the next few days one thought has occurred to me-I have little brainroom for more than one- and that is why, in the last 50 years during which time we have embraced  decimalisation and  metrication, do we still sell eggs by the half dozen or dozen?
Whilst I appreciate that egg boxes would have to be redesigned to hold 5  eggs surely this sort of problem has been dealt with in other industries? Why have egg suppliers been allowed to live in the Dark Ages. Well if we leave then I suppose it will continue as at present. Maybe that's what Breggsit was all about in the first place, starting out as a cunning plan by chickens to keep themselves independent of their French clucking  neighbours and cast off the " yoke" of bureaucracy. 

The popular explanation is that back in the days before we had history books eggs were a penny each and therefor 12 eggs would cost a shilling in Christian money. Too tidy an explanation for me in that like everything else the price of an egg could go up or down as market forces and hens' arses dictated. The correlation again becomes clear in that our economic survival is being governed by headless chickens who talk out of their arses. I should have been an economist-this is soooo easy.





My mention of brainroom above leads me to a fascinating article I read in The Oldie magazine from which I will now quote a chunk.
If you'd like to read the whole article-and I recommend you do-it's here:

https://www.pressreader.com/uk/the-oldie/20190101/281565176815627


It is impossible to fathom the depths of the human mind. The brain, it is estimated, can process a quadrillion computations per second. ‘We don’t just have the power of a single computer in our heads,’ observes communications wizard Charles Jonscher. ‘The true comparison would be a figure like 20 billion computers.’
Proposing, by analogy, what this might mean, psychology professor Paul Reber, writing in the Scientific American, suggests that, were the brain a digital video recorder, its information-processing capacity would be sufficient to hold three million hours’ worth of television programmes.
‘You would have to leave it running continuously for more than three hundred years to use up all that storage.’

Now I don't know about you but I can't even remember how The Little Drummer Girl  finished let alone the  Bodyguard so I think I need turning off and back on again. Unfortunately rebooting isn't an option for us humans unless you believe in Reincarnation but as the late great Ken Dodd said "I don't believe in Reincarnation. Who'd want to come back as a tin of evaporated milk"?


========================================================= After a quiet New Year we took ourselves off to the New Forest for three nights in the excellent Passford House Hotel nr Lymington.

https://passfordhousehotel.co.uk/our-hotel/




The Passford House Hotel Welcoming Committee
It was such a nice place we stayed a fourth night and sod the expense. On the first morning while Pam met up with a nursing chum I went to Mudeford Quay, a place I've always liked and had a stroll with my camera. Boring photos of the Needles follow along with some swans landing on the water and lots of boaty stuff.


















A View of Christchurch Priory across the water











To Buckler's Hard which has changed a lot since I was there 20+ years ago. There is now an excellent museum which most unusually Pam not only entered but enjoyed.




Buckler's Hard where the great Sir Francis Chichester sailed  on August 12th 1966 before circumnavigating the world.
https://www.bucklershard.co.uk/news/gipsy-moth-iv-returns-home-to-bucklers-hard/
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Some shots of the grounds at Passford House including a splendid Monet Garden which looks good now and will look wonderful come Springtime










On reflection



Not sure what Concord had to do with Monet...


Down to Lymington to meet former neighbours Matthew and Katie who left Berko last Feb to set up home and business on the coast. We met at The Haven Bar overlooking Lymington Yacht Haven. It was good to meet up with them and they were in good form. (https://www.iceinterior.co.uk/)







Down in the Forest and Pam goes walkabout.



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An unfortunate piece of labeling




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Now the birthday approaches. Next Sunday. Not a significant birthday though at my age every birthday is significant. Trying a new venue this year, The Golden Eagle at Ashley Green which has been taken by the Tenant of the George and Dragon, Northchurch and his chef, Tim has moved up there so live in hopes. 18 of us going at present so should be jolly. I'll let you know next time. 
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Popped in to see Mike P on Tuesday-he's well thank you-though a bit low on visitors. Anyway my reason for publishing this picture is that it is a selfie (still sounds distasteful to me but not as distasteful as a selfie stick!) BUT when I took it I was sitting on Mike's right. So I took this tasteful self portrait complete with New Orleans woolly hat and same thing happened-I was actually holding my left hand in Corbynistic pose.


Explain please. It's beyond me.
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Until the next time dear friends


Wow. What a grand week!. My birthday was on 13th Jan and we booked in at the excellent Golden Eagle at Ashley Green for lunch. 17 of us. It...