Thursday, 11 August 2022

Horses for courses.'Could he cal

 Priscilla has been unwell.   So much so that I had to stop using her.   She would not cooperate at all   I live at the top of quite a steep drive and I need her brakes to work perfectly, which they weren't doing.  Various friends have had her out at the top of the drive and looked wisely at her, twiddled a few  wheels and said  there was nothing to be done - she needed to go back for repair.   So yesterday I rang the Rollator Repair Doctor.   I spoke to his Receptionist who listened carefully and then remarked that she needed a Home Visit.   Could he call this morning?

Could he call this morning?   I'll say! I immediately cancelled my hair appointment.   I steeled myself for the worst possible news - she would have to go away for an operation.

He turned up on time, twiddled a few wires and handed her over to me.   'Here you are - try her now' (I had told him her name was Priscilla) - Perfect.   What had he done?  ' Adjusted her brakes'- 'happens to them all as they get older' he said. (Doesn't it happen to us all?)   How would he know to do that?   "I used to be a car mechanic"!!

Priscilla's chest swelled with pride.   She always knew she was special but 'a Car'?  Not sure I dare take her out again.

Wednesday, 10 August 2022

When we are not around

 I wrote after Matthew Parris's comment in last week's Times about the dog and the urban fox meeting and communicating in the night in the urban churchyard.   I was reminded of it this morningwhen H, my neighbour, came round.

Yesterday she had taken the netting off the  pond and when she had finished gardening she had forgotten to put it back on.   When she went to the pond today  there was a dead fieldmouse at the bottom of the pond and as she fished it out she saw there was also a  half-grown hedgehog drowned in the pond too.  Two little creatures needlessly gone - what a shame.

But I had always thought that because of the steps in my garden it would be impossible for me to have hedgehogs but obviously not - our gardens are equally steep and inaccessible.  So now I am wondering what wanders around in my garden when I am asleep.

And there has been a strange squawking noise - very loud and very invasive, over the garden wall so to speak.  We think we have solved the mystery of that too, this morning.   There are two two half grown pigeons in the hedge.   They are making enough noise  for  twenty two.

See you on another hot day tomorrow

Monday, 8 August 2022


 It is very hot - up in the high twenties and destined to hit the low thirties tomorrow.   I am pretty useless in this kind of weather - always have been.   I watered my tubs and will do it again after tea but other than that my Chiropodist has been and for a day or two I shall feel I am walking on air.

The Commonwealth Games are over; it is the closing ceremony tonight then the City of Birmingham will return to normal and life will go on.   But it has been good to see the Stadium almost full every day and to see the encouragement the crowd had given to the athletes.

My tubs will all be thirsty again by now.   M, my neighbour, kindly watered my tub nearest to her this morning which helped me a lot.

Nothing more to tell today, too hot to think.   What I would do if I lived permanently in a very hot climate I can't imagine!!   See you tomorrow.

Sunday, 7 August 2022

A Good Philosophy!

 My friend T has a philosophy very much like that of both of my husbands;  it consists of one line, "Never throw anything away; it might come in useful"!

Of course it does help if you have more or less unlimited space.   With my farmer this was of course true.   With M, my first husband, it was not so true but he still tried to stand by it.This did mean that on occasions he came unstuck like the famous time when friends called to see my husband's instruments he made (he made early musical instruments) and when the friend asked to see in his shed he opened the door and my ironing board fell out.

But to return to friend T.   I have a drawer in my bedroom which has been irritating me because the bottom has been falling out of it.  As you know I have been tidying and  reviewing my files and had only one drawer left to do.   This I could not do so this morning, when friends T and S called, I asked T for his opinion on the drawer.   After close inspection he said something to the effect that, "I might have a piece of wood that might fit that - and after coffee off they went home."

He has just returned having found "just the piece" which has now been fitted in the bottom of the drawer, strengthened and all put together again perfectly.   Everything is back in the drawer, done, dusted and back to normal and when I tried to thank T he said that it was just the kind of thing he liked to spend his time doing.   That's the kind of friend one loves isn't it?   So thank you dear friend!!!

Saturday, 6 August 2022

Watering tubs.

I read an article in The Times at 'Tub Planting Time'suggesting we branched out a bit and took a wider view rather than planting the same old things like pelargoniums, alyssum. lobelia and the like.   So I did just that, adding just a few Pelargoniums, grey leaved foliage plants - the same old things I put in every year.  Now, as they begin to go into August , if I do a serious survey I have to admit (and this is   a suggestion remember) as they are coming to the end of their tub planting time that the old favourites are doing far, far better than my new suggested ones.   Yes, I know that the Summer has been exceptional, I know I am a year older and watering is not so easy to do, but the tubs  planted with grey foliage and Pelargoniums are a beautiful sight whereas those planted with dahlias (not too bad) and various bedding plants and frequently dead headed are telling me each time I dead head them that they have 'had it'.

Although my road was not built as a road for retired people, many of the inhabitants have lived here for  thirty or more years and so it is now most people well retired (several in their nineties) and only a very few bother with tubs - (too much watering and it will be even worse if a hosepipe ban comes in)

Off now to put today's lunch (minced beef pie with a variety of vegetables and good gravy) in the microwave and watch The Commonwealth Games.  See you tomorrow. 

P S    Good that John got to Sitges this time isn't it? 

Friday, 5 August 2022


Lovely evening here.   There has been a lot of cloud all day  but now in the evening there is sunshine and the wind has dropped a lot so it is pleasant.   I have been tired all day - it is always the same if I have a jolly day with a lot going on I  am tired for a day or two afterwards.

Still nothing special to do over the next day or two so I can relax.   There will still be tubs to water.   Sad but I shall not do them again after this year - it is getting too much for me to do  especially if we get a hosepipe ban and I have to carry cans of water.   When P and D came over the Pennines yesterday they remarked on how the rivers were fairly full and we had already noticed our local river, The Ure was nowhere near empty so maybe we shall escape the worst of it.

It is a sad situation really because yes, the reservoirs are quite low but the Water Companies are guilty of wasting a huge amount of water through water leakage so it is hard to know where to lay the blame isn;t it?   What do you think?

That;s it for today friends - almost time for my    Pinup (Monty Don of course).  An hour of him and I am sure I shall feel quite perky again and my tiredness will have faded into insignificance.

Goodnight dear friends.

Thursday, 4 August 2022

A busy day

Yes, a busy day but such an enjoyable one.  When you have led a busy and interesting life old age can be frustrating but one really has to try and make the best of things and get on with it.

My friends from Grange over Sands arrived at half past eleven (it is about   a two hour journey through beautiful countryside across The Pennines and it has been a glorious   day so  the journey would be lovely.)

We had to meet friend W at the restaurant for twelve so it was ten minutes sit down and then on the ten minute journey to Middlemoor.  Lovely gardens, brilliant disabled access, nice wide spaces between tables  and very welcoming staff -perfect for a Summer's day.

Friend D says I must not repeat the menu as it is boring and I am sure he is right.   So sufficient to say we had a super meal - lovely food, nice company, excellent service.    When I explained to the young man waiting at our table that I couldn't hold my coffee cup because of my shake, he  went away and returned with my coffee in a lovely mug with hens on it.

There was also a gift shop and I was able to top up with super cards for all purposes.   No matter how many cards I buy when I am out and about there always comes a time when I have a birthday (or in this case a silver wedding) coming up and no suitable card to send.   And I always think cards are too personal a thing to get someone else to buy.

Now, at half past nine, I am more than ready for  an early night so shall sign off.   This day of doing something different - whilst it has been very tiring= it has done me a huge boost and when I get up in the morning I shall be greeted by a vase of golden sunflowers - another boost.


Wednesday, 3 August 2022

Visitors tomorrow.

Friends coming tomorrow four of us are going out to lunch - not far - only as far as Middlemoor, a couple of miles from home but with lovely food, so no effort on my part.   Then my dear Carer is making me one of her splendid salads for tea and this will just be a case of adding things like mashed avocado, green olives   with feta, cheeses, chorizo,   pate and Danish Pastries; that won't take a lot of effort either.

I have just been out into the garden to do a bit of dead-heading where I can reach and to water my tubs.   In spite of quite a lot of rain this week the tubs were desperate for a drink.  Now at a quarter to nine in the evening it is already feeling Autumnal - breezy and needing a cardigan.   How quickly Autumn has come round this year.

I am still feeling lacking in News but at least tomorrow I shall be able to tell you what we all had to eat.   See you then.