Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A Ghostly Tale...

I am fed up.
I have a week off and I am full of cold. I walk the dog this morning and I am soaked to the skin. Bollocks to it; I've had my moan, now on to other things.
Being cooped up indoors Mrs.C. told me about the watch again facility on the cable TV. I caught up with 'Rome' and 'Torchwood' and thoroughly enjoyed the former whilst the jury remains out regarding the latter. No.1 daughter described it as camp and silly...I have also been catching up with 'The Perfumed Garden' on Six radio. The last shows (1967) of John Peel on Radio London during its pirate days. I am happy as a pig in the proverbial being an old hippy at heart.
I promised a ghost story for Halloween...

We go back to November 1991 and the place is London. To be more precise the place is Swain's Lane, Highgate N.6. I used to work at a community rehab unit near Parliament Hill Fields and I often walked to work from my flat just off the Archway Road. A lovely walk in the summer but on a cold, damp autumnal morning...I would walk briskly. There were a number of ways to get to work but the quickest one was via Swain's Lane. It was steep and quite narrow in parts and as you near the halfway point to your left is the East section of Highgate Cemetery. I have visited the cemetery many times as a legitimate visitor and as a kid who climbed over at night with his mates. It is fair to say that I had a pretty good knowledge of the cemetery.
This particular morning I was walking towards the cemetery gates when I spotted him. He was walking directly towards the gates and about 200 yards away from me. I don't know how I knew it, but I instinctively knew something was wrong. He was extremely tall, well over six feet in height and he was extremely thin. He wore a long black cape-like coat and a top hat. His dress looked Victorian in style and he appeared all black. He also carried a small package. However, he walked directly towards the gates which I and every other local knew was locked to prevent intruders gaining entry. I watched as he walked straight at and through the gates, not once altering his stride or reaching out to open the gates. I stood frozen to the spot and stared at the gates. I kept thinking "Those gates are locked.I know they are locked".
I walked towards the gates whilst keeping to the righthand side of the road, keeping some distance between myself and the figure who had disappeared once he had entered the cemetery. The gates were securely chained and padlocked. To get in one would need the key or would have to climb over. I stared at the gates and I realised that I had seen someone not human and my instincts told me the figure I had seen was evil.It's funny what details stick in your mind because as well as his extreme height, thinness, the clothing and the blackness of the figure, he also appeared to glide and there was no sound. The ground was littered with leaves yet I heard no sound from him nor did he take any notice of me.
I have to confess I made it into work in record time and one of my colleagues stated "You look as though you've seen a ghost". When I told them what I had seen I was met with laughter and ridicule.
However, I know what I saw that morning and I remember it distinctly to this day. As to whether it was a vampire...I have absolutely no idea as to the existence of vampires although I do believe I saw an apparition. I also took another route to work for the next few months.
TTFN.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Bleugh Again pt. 2.

One lengthy walk through town as I could not be arsed to drive to the beach. It kind of defeats the object of exercise for me and the pooch. I admired the new building going up as the dog sniffed at any and everything. She also ate some unidentifiable mess on the pavement which will entail her lengthy stay in the garden this evening. Otherwise we will acquire another interesting stain on the carpet as a result of this.






One tired pooch.








The combination of paracetamol, sudafed and onions in a sock got me through the walk. I have also left off the slimfast (any excuse!) for the last two days; back to it tomorrow. Town was heaving with a surprisingly large number of 'yoofs' on an odd assortment of bicycles talking into mobiles as they cycled precariously along. One shouting into his phone "I'm off to fuckin' sign on...they'll stop me fuckin' money if I don't go". That was the amended version because writing up the thirty plus expletives he shouted in the course of a short conversation would try my patience. Edukashun...wonderful!
I had a good look at the yacht club and salivated over the boats there. Admired the roadworks on the A180 and the large holes they were digging. Muttley stopped to pee in every hole we came to.After we had walked a number of miles my resolve faltered and I headed for home. Home to network with friends on the net but I bought a copy of the local rag for news of the armed police swoop from Saturday.
(I'll post the picture later.Bloody photoblog is playing up again!)
Otherwise I'm in tonight to watch 'Most Haunted Live'. It's sad but true, I enjoy the paranormal and even enjoy this hocus pocus baloney. I maintain as much as I can a sceptical attitude although I have seen what I believe to be a ghost. I'll save that story for tomorrow night. MHL is not how to conduct a paranormal investigation, unless screaming, running around and making as much noise as possible is how one should be performed. But I enjoy it and you never know, they might one day capture genuine evidence on camera. There have been a few good episodes but I just enjoy the fun of it. So I will be glued tonight unlike last night when I fell asleep. It is also in one of my favourite cities - Edinburgh. Tune in and watch it, you may be surprised and enjoy it.
TTFN.

Bleugh again.

Monday morning and I am up early.
Sore throat, sinuses congested and feeling decidedly ropey.
I have only just got rid off the last cold.
So paracetamol and sudafed will be the order of the day plus a beach walk to blow the lurgies away.I had an early night because I felt distinctly under the weather. No.1 is only now getting over his manflu and I guess he has lovingly bestowed it upon me.
The fancy dress went well and much beer was drunk.Elvis was there and he belted out his hits.Do you know what, I don't believe he really was Elvis otherwise he's looking well for 71 (He's not really dead, after his lengthy sojourn in Area 54 with Princess Di).I'm orf for breakfast and then that walk.
TTFN.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Armed Bill.

Hot off the press!
A 4x4 stopped by armed police units at the end of our street...no more than 50 metres away. Thrilling and scarey were two of the descriptions bandied about.
From the shouted "Armed police. Don't move!" to the red light dots on the perps bodies as they lay on the ground...all very exciting.
I'm orf to a Halloween fancy dress with Elvis on stage.
TTFN.

Whinging...

A pizza, two bottles of Wychwood 'Black Witch'porter and a good nights sleep...I had to prise myself from bed this morning. I slept 'like a top' (what does that mean?) and nipped out to the market early. I also bought some chocolate and nightnurse for No.1 who is still very unwell. He's been confined to the house because his intent was to join his mates today and 'hang out'.It's raining and it is cold...logic didn't work so parental diktat is now in force. He was coughing last night like a 50 a day astbestos worker. Currently he is drumming away and appears quite happy, courtesy of the chocolate.
My plans today are quite flexible as I now have a week off and I can chill for a bit.The past two weeks at work have been hectic, involving a lot of difficult assessments and lots of travelling. We also seem to be permanently short of staff and my colleagues look tired...They probably see the same in me. Unemployment, failed relationships,debt, alcohol and drugs are certainly potent accelerants if you want mental health to break down. Sadly, we also see some people who are quite prepared to abdicate responsibility for their lives to others, whether that be the family,GP, A&E or the police. It speaks volumes that we get excited when someone with a serious and enduring mental illness (e.g. Schizophrenia; Bi-polar Affective Disorder;etc..)comes our way. That is not to denigrate depression or anxiety, but we do also get referrals from people who want us to 'fix' them. That is, make them happy and all the bad things go away. I am a pragmatist and I am not above being creative as well as empathic in my approach to working with people who are in crisis. But I do believe in enabling the person to address their own problems with the support of myself and my colleagues.So if someone is using amphetamines and has done so for several months, but also stating anxiety and mood problems for the past six months.Hello, do you see the connection here...stop using. We can support people in the short term as they stop and if there are mental health problems. Then a swift referral and onto the appropriate agencies. But to continue using, to steal and rob others to fund this behaviour and to make threats to self harm once the police have caught up with you....one makes choices in life and one accepts the consequences of ones behaviour. That does anger me, the attempt to use mental health problems to excuse bad behaviour.Note I state mental health problems and not illness. The latter I would apply to recurrent depression which makes someones life hell or to someone with schizophrenia. Alcoholism and drug addiction are horrible and, if it was easy to amend then life would be easier all round. It is not easy to address addictions but they can be addressed. Illnesses such as schizophrenia are not so easy to address and take time, resources, commitment and hope. Yes, I know the same applies to addictions, but the answer there can be summed up by the phrase 'Stop using'. What does the young man with schizophrenia give up or stop using? Yes,I am aware that many people with serious mental illnesses use alcohol and/or drugs to cope. If I were in their shoes I would probably do the same.
There are not easy solutions and if I were to explore some I could be posting for the next few hours.Suffice to say it does involve money and resources being used for good here at home rather than for bringing democracy to other countries via the bomb and bullet.But I also think that people need to be made aware that they are responsible for themselves and their behaviour. In mental health good nursing means nursing someone back to good or sufficient mental health where they can then make decisions to get on with their lives. That process involves the patient having to make informed choices, sometimes painful ones but taking ownership of their lives and responsibilty for their choices. If I have the delusional belief that the government is after me (They really are !) and I have paranoid ideas about the council services, DWP, neighbours, etc...any choices or decisions I make will be informed by my paranoid delusional ideas. Hardly a truly informed choice to avoid contact with people, refuse to collect benefits and live on the streets because one is 'invisible' to the authorities. Hunger, cold, illnesses and isolation are the consequences there. But for others whose lives do not match the media drivel, whether on soaps, advertisements or lifestyle magazines...that's life. Unfortunately, children are fed this crap and they grow up with expectations that TV is a true mirror of reality and disappointments can be hard to take. Obesity, alcohol and drug problems, violence, crime, underage pregnancies, declining literacy,etc...bloody hell, I'll never be out of work.
My rant is going off at a tangent so...
TTFN.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Knackered.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Autumn.

Summer pleasures they are gone like to visions every one
And the cloudy days of autumn and of winter cometh on
I tried to call them back but unbidden they are gone
Far away from heart and eye and for ever far away.
( John Clare - 'Remembrances').

Autumn arrived with a bang this morning, wet, windy and cold (like most politicians).
Summer is well and truly over but I do like the 'season of mists and mellow fruitfulness' (Keats). The leaves changing to golds, browns and bronze; the peppery scent of the leaf mulch on the ground mixing with the scent of garden and woodfires. The evenings drawing in as the mists and shadows hint at haunted memories and presage winters ghostly tendrils waiting to emerge. Time for ghostly tales, myths and legends as people draw in around the fire. Pubs shine a welcome and entice one in. Sophisticated and civilized we may be but the veneer hides the primitive who is aware that harvest and gathering in is preparatory for the cold hard winter months ahead. The celebrations of Halloween and bonfire night are excuses to light fires, make noise and merry...scare those spirits and fears away.
I'm off to open a beer and chase some of my own spirits away.
TTFN.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The whole tooth and nothing but...

A much needed day off today and, despite having little money I plan to go out. Fresh air, walking and exercising the dog. I made the mistake last night of buying some 'Bonfire Treacle Toffee'. The crunchy thing I found in the second toffee was a cap from one of my teeth...Bugger! I'm not registered with a dentist because the NHS dentist around here is a mythical beast, found amongst the unicorns and mermaids of yore.Good to see nu labour working and the NHS safe in the hands of this government...tories however do not get off lightly as I certainly don't trust them either. Lord Sutch! We're screaming "Where are you when we need you" because the lunatics really have taken over the asylum. Maybe Lord Sutch is only sleeping alongside King Arthur and in our hour of need he will answer his country's call.
I am in a catch-22 situation in that if I pay to have my teeth attended to, I may then join a dental insurance scheme and thus receive proper ongoing dental care. Now, if I have a few thousand quid lying around I will attend to that immediately. To quote Father Jack "Arse!". I could always commit a heinous crime and during my watery cruise courtesy of Her Maj. I could receive free dental care. As alaw abiding citizen I would have to choose a particularly dreadful crime to ensure a lengthy stay and so receive the full course of treatment. I'll wear a t-shirt questioning govt. policy in Iraq and quoting non-PC language about one of the minority groups in this country....Islamic or Jewish Trainspotters perhaps. That'll ensure a lengthy sentence....I'll only get community service or a tag for GBH so that's no good.
Alternatively, I could just book a two week holiday in Croatia or Poland and receive excellent dental treatment much more cheaply: Club 18 toothurtee.
Happily I am not in any pain with it but it is worrying that as I get older I am losing teeth. I'll be that toothless old git in the corner nursing a pint with a terrier under the table. "'Twernt like this in my day...you entered a mosh pit then and nobody left it wi'out a broken limb. You could drink twelve pints o' snakebite, eat a doner kebab and smoke an eighth and still have change out of fifty quid".
Where's me Serbo-Croat dictionary....
TTFN.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

To sleep, perchance to dream...

I survived the lurgy and the pain has gone from my side and, own up who put hallucinogenic drugs in the local water. They are hammering at the gates for help apart from those really ill ones who are running away from us. The past few days have been extremely busy so I haven't had time to whinge about 'manflu', etc...
We have been woken up two nights running by :
1 Noisy revellers.
2 Czech/ Polish / East of Berlin workers conversing LOUDLY at 4 a.m.
3 Cats...not ours I hasten to add.








4 House alarms.
5 Fuckwits in noisy motors racing around the streets.

Is it the run up towards Christmas via Halloween/Bonfire Night/Diwali or with the reduction in my alcohol consumption am I only now aware of the real noise levels here in town? I'm usually ok...I wake up, note the noise and I go straight back to sleep. Mrs.C wakes up and remains awake....cue one annoyed bunny come the break of dawn. I suggested a solution: close the window and enjoy one of the benefits of double glazing, namely quiet. She gave me The Look and I found urgent matters to attend to. However, windows closed last night and we all had an excellent nights sleep (quietly smug).
In our business the correct terminology is 'sleep hygiene'....clean pyjama's anyone and a squirt of deodorant? No, it refers to the structure of sleep and whether you've slept as befits the just and goodly or, tossed and turned all night on your sack of spanners and barbed wire as befits the ungodly bound first class for the fiery pits. I avoid using 'sleep hygiene' and stick with plain and simple descriptions as to why one slept badly. Whether sleep was interrupted e.g. A cat called Tigger who wanders around the bedroom at 5 a.m. yowling for the joy of it (She is now firmly locked away in the back room!). How long before you dropped off or when you awoke, etc...I have only genuinely met a few people whose statement "I don't sleep more than two - three hours a night" has turned out to be true. Most people do sleep more than they realize, when not interrupted by the above. Mind you, in yesterday's 'Daily Mirror'I read about a horse that had a cyst removed from it's nose by a vet. Prior to the operation, the horse's snoring was so loud it sounded like a foghorn and could be heard from two fields away.They don't say whether the horse itself slept through the noise...
Time for a cuppa.
TTFN.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Bleugh!!

Short post this evening as I am a poorly puss.
I saw my GP this morning and after explaining my symptoms (mainly lower left abdominal pain) I stated I had no idea what was wrong with me. He replied "I have no idea either".
Ten points for honesty but a full Norwegian for instilling confidence in me.Water tested and poked /prodded...still no idea but "probably not your kidney". I'd already worked that out myself over the past week. A prescription for strong painkillers and advised me to return if I am still in pain in a couple of weeks time. So my second day off wasted whilst I slept hoping the pain will go away. After all, I've only had the pain for two weeks now but the past two days have been the worst. Back at work tomorrow and thanks to a work colleague I also have a cold.
"Veterinary...fetch the gun now...It's better in the long run".
TTFN.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Aye caramba...

You could have knocked me down with a feather. We're walking along Cleethorpes beach, enjoying the sight and sounds of the waves and the colourful grey skies. Seashells and sand crunching underfoot, a grumbling noise from No.1 about chips when we spotted it. The smallest dog any of us had ever seen...a tiny white Chihuahua. It must have been a puppy because I have never seen a dog so small before. Our cats would have towered over it and damn, I left my camera at home. For such a wee thing it was full of spirit.
















No.1 requested a trip to the beach for fresh air and chips after having had 'manflu' over the past few days. The only thing to spoil our walk was the chavettes shouting abuse at some shop workers. Otherwise it was nice sharing the beach with only a few others and feeling the cobwebs blow away.I even had a naughty treat and had some chips with curry sauce...lovely. Moderation...
Time to walk the mutt and burn a few calories...
TTFN.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Shapeshifter...


















Diet continues to make progress and for once my will power appears to be holding up. The occasional small treat here and there i.e. crisps, but I am 'plodding on' with it. A variety of things set me going...
1. I ran out of excuses for not dieting.
2. I was no longer fast enough to catch the pies.
3. Health.
Certainly the latter plays a major part in motivating me and I eventually reached the realisation that my body only has one owner and I can't part exchange it at some future date.I can also hopefully provide a role model for my son to whom green vegetables are currently anathema. If he sees me losing weight and living a more healthy lifestyle he may avoid the mistakes I made....I should know better, children only learn from their own mistakes!
Today was the second day of my ten week introduction to psychodynamic psychotherapy. It's a chance for mental health professionals to get a 'taster' of it and , if we're attracted to it , we can sign up for the next five years of training to become a psychotherapist. I must be a masochist because I am hooked and enjoying this taster and I am considering signing up for the training. However, I have the next eight weeks to make my mind up and learn as much as I can before committing myself to the training. Bloody hell, that and completing my degree...I'll have to give this some serious thought otherwise I'll go education crazy.
I'm off to gird my loins for the difficult quiz and a well earned pint of foaming ale....I'm foaming at the mouth thinking about it.
TTFN.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Unlucky for some...

Paraskevidekatriaphobia...the fear of Friday the thirteenth. As a slate fell off a house I was passing and the man in front of me disappeared from sight down an open manhole, I wondered about this irrational fear. Approaching Tesco's a black cat was hit by a falling meteorite and I still couldn't put my finger on this irrational fear of Friday the thirteenth. I stepped over the still smoking body of an electrician as the sirens of an ambulance announced its approach.The screech of brakes as it narrowly missed a blind man and his faithful guidedog briefly caught my attention, even as the dog then urinated on the loose live wire and the yelps vied with the sirens in the loudness stakes. I still could not fathom the reasons for this myth of an unlucky day.A lone magpie fell dead from a tree as I left the supermarket and landed on the head of Mrs Miggins whose well known fear of birds was a source of amusement to the local youths. Her receding screams as I walked on were brought to an abrupt halt by the ladder of the window cleaner as she ran under it and into the local bakery from whence the issueing black smoke hinted at further troubles.
As I turned the corner into my street and passed the fire engine with two flat tyres I continued to mull over this concept of 'unlucky for some Friday the thirteenth'. The firefighter on his back having discovered a carelessly deposited banana skin on the pavement continued to shout invectives at the hapless girl who had tossed it away. She was in no position to respond as she had stopped to pick up her broken compact and placed her hand in the dog shit earlier deposited by the guidedog. Her loudly voiced expletives caused the local vicar to cover his ears so he was unable to hear the cry of "Better the devil behind me " as a householder threw salt over her left shoulder which landed full in his face. I crossed the road and let myself in to my house. As I switched the kettle on I found the milk had turned sour and I hadn't bought any at the shops.
"Bugger...that's just my bad luck. No wonder, it's Friday the thirteenth" I exclaimed as I looked at my wife who for some reason was staring open mouthed at some commotion outside the window.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Batty...






First the good news: I've lost more weight.
Now the bad news: Mrs.Catto left the freezer door open all night.
Cue some very well fed animals and I also partook of some fish as well as a delightful curry I cooked this afternoon. I can't move, yet in terms of amount eaten it was quite small compared to before the diet. I still feel stuffed and uncomfortable. A lesson there...stick to the diet and Mrs.C will check the freezer door next time. The animals will be well fed tomorrow as well. If they understand Christmas then it has arrived early for them.

Today being my day off I had a wander around the local shopping precinct,mainly to look at DVD's, CD's and books.I went armed with a gift card and I bought Eric Sykes' autobiography and 'Arthur and George' by Julian Barnes, both books I have wantd for some time now.The precinct was an homage to Halloween, bats, broomsticks, witches and vampires galore. Time to spray the dog black and glue her batwings on again. With luminous paint around her eyes and jaws she should look good enough to scare the kiddies. There's to be a Halloween night at our local and Elvis will be singing. Halloween costumes are optional although for some of our local Grimsby Goths it'll be their usual attire. I have to admit I do like Goths although it may just be the female Goths I like. Having said that, the idea of wearing a black frock coat, long frilly sleeves and a black top hat whilst carrying a silver topped black cane to work does appeal to the macabre in me.It would go down well in A&E....I also like Halloween although I think the trick or treating should be confined to the under tens.
I must away to the pub quiz and lose in the manner which we are accustomed to losing in.
TTFN.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Musical Interlude...

Two very busy days at the 'coalface' with assessments of some very ill people indeed and of one person who travels the country seeking hospital admissions. Needless to say, the extremely ill people necessitated half the paperwork and in-put of the hospital spotter*. The latter thankfully are rare although we do get some strange referrals, often in the early hours of the morning and usually associated with drugs, alcohol or both. The title 'crisis' does tend to be a magnet for a variety of people who do not need our service or it frightens the bejasus out of the people who really could use our service. Requests for a taxi, plumber or to answer quiz questions about the last UK no.1 record for Shakatak are not welcomed, however much of an emergency it may be.
Having trawled various blogs since the return of 'connectivity'(Calling occupants of interplanetary craft), reading peoples lists of their favourite music or films...how do they decide? I must be a typical Libran in that I can never decide my favourite top ten of anything because I keep changing my mind. If it came to choosing music, I know that 'Suite: Judy Blue Eyes' by Crosby, Stills and Nash would be in there, as would 'Hot Burrito No.1' by The Flying Burrito Brothers. But so many others would be there. In any order the following might make it in...
'Start Wearing Purple'- Gogol Bordello.
'Gasoline Alley Bred' - The Hollies.
'Save The Children' - Marvin Gaye.
'Baby Please Don't Go' - Muddy Waters.
'Magic' - Nick Drake.
'1952 Vincent Black Lightning' - Richard Thompson.
'Bees Wing' - Roy Bailey.
'If I had Possession Over Judgement Day' - Robert Johnson.
'Made of Stone' - Stone Roses.
'Eton Rifles' - The Jam....
The list is endless and the above are the ones that immediately leap to mind when I scan through the music on the PC.But I haven't mentioned Chuck Berry or Miles Davis, Fairport Convention or even 'Girls ' by Moments and Whatnots. Not highbrow music but a bloody damn good dance record. Before going out clubbing I used to play 'Surfing Bird' - The Trashmen just to psyche me up for a good night out. Although a 'rocker' I also liked dancing and I could happily dance for hours at a club, but hearing X-ray Spex or Ian Dury also gets me going. So how on earth can one choose a favourite ten pieces of music!
TTFN.

*Like train spotters but anoraks are optional.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Idyll part 2.






Moon as captured by son.







I had to give up the PC so No.1 son could write up some homework. His hand is still quite swollen but not too painful. He was being pushed around by some twat who refused to stop so No.1 hit him. It worked in that the twat left but the consequence of his action is a sore hand...jaws are harder than noses I pointed out to him!
I discovered yesterday that a few pints of Hewitt's real ale do not mix well with a slimfast diet. No hangover or anything like that, I just feel somewhat 'washed out' today. I still managed to do the garden and cook Sunday dinner, albeit at a relaxed pace. The consequence for me was that I slept through the England game yesterday...Rather a good consequence in hindsight. I had a lengthy chat with a friend yesterday about coffee. Not instant which is all well and good but the real stuff. I bought an electric coffee grinder sometime back and I do like the ritual of selecting beans and setting up the stovetop coffee pot for a strong cup of an excellent coffee. I don't drink much coffee but when I do I like it to be strong and full of flavour. It's fun selecting the beans as well and the smell....heavenly!Talking with my friend about coffee and we both agreed that real ale, coffee and real food are much appreciated as we get older. I guess the smell of coffee is one of those key scents along with bread baking and roses, jasmine, honeysuckle, etc... I remember years ago when things weren't so good walking into a rose garden in a public park and the scent was exquisite. It was a warm late summer evening and sitting on a bench surrounded by roses with the air suffused with their scents...wonderful. It cheered me up immensely at the time and I am immediately transported there whenever I now smell roses.
On that note I shall now go.
TTFN.

Woodland Idyll.














No trip to the beach...halfway there the pooch let me know in no uncertain terms she needed the toilet.So a swift detour to Weelsby Woods and my car remained dry. She was happy as well as meeting lots of dogs whom she behaved herself with. I've discovered she only growls/ barks at other dogs when she is on the lead, hence it's better to generally leave off the lead where it is safe to do so. I had a lovely walk a couple of times around the woods whilst we enjoyed the autumnal sunshine.














She of course ran several miles to the two I walked as she investigated every nook and cranny with her nose glued to the canine equivalent of the local newspaper.
Plenty of dog walkers around and the play area crammed with kids also making the most of the sunshine. I haven't taken the pooch here for ages and it is one of my favourite local walks, giving the appearance of a wild area yet in reality it is well managed and not far from town.














A great place to exercise both the dog and myself.
My plans for the rest of the weekend went awry as my son managed to injure his right hand and it is very swollen. No bones broken but I decided to be available today in case a trip to A&E was needed. Hence I stayed around home and attended to chores.
I'm being called away...TTFN.

Friday, October 06, 2006

A Day Off in the Life...

I love days off after a busy patch at work and today I slept in until 8.30 with a marked reluctance to climb out of the pit. Eyes open and a pair of brown eyes staring back at me..."wake up, wake up, wake up!"














I originally acquired the pup for my son who was very surprised to discover we were getting a dog. I had planned on getting a small dog, a Yorkie or some other Terrier. We instead welcomed a Spanador into our home and she is now very much part of the family. However, as Mrs.Catto has pointed out, I am a magnet for animals. The dog and all three cats are fixated on me and all want to sit on, near or above me, much to the annoyance of No.1 son who doesn't get a look in. I point out that I am the one who generally feeds them hence it is no wonder they all make a beeline for me....that and a comfortable lap and general fussing.
Anyhow, the dog was instrumental in prising me out of bed to face the day. Delight of delights, I pencilled in this morning as 'paying bills day'.Most of them are paid via DD (Dangerous Debit...'We'll take what we like when we like') but some companies are stuck in the 19th century so orf to the post office. Surprisingly, no queues and all done in a matter of minutes. Thence to Boots to weigh myself; astonishingly I have lost 15 pounds in weight since I last weighed myself. WooHoo!! Slimfast is working and I even feel better; I don't think I have eaten so much fruit and drunk so much water. I had one pint of beer last night after sticking with soda and limes; it went straight to my head so I'll keep it to just the occasional one.
So I have a weekend free and a dog that needs walking plus a camera ready to shoot.A trip to the beach now the mutt is allowed on them and maybe a few churches.
TTFN.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Ooh! It was dark when I got up....autumnal.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Milestones...

So....what's been happening.
Another milestone passed as I celebrated my birthday last week, inevitably in the pub and very enjoyable it was too. Good company and excellent ale and the craic was indeed mighty. It continued on Saturday night as we celebrated the retirement of Mother Tap. At the age of 108 she has retired from her job as a bouncer at one of the the local hostelries! Seriously though, she has now retired to a well earned break but somehow I can't imagine her putting her feet up.So, many a drink was lifted and the toasts were offered throughout the evening. I also finally got to drink Liquorice Sambuca....mmmmmoreish, so we had several more. A good crowd was in including many of the regulars.
After all the alcohol consumed on Friday and Saturday, Sunday was spent quietly and soberly pottering about.Monday was an entirely different kettle of fish.I started my diet and I opted for the slimfast diet, mainly for it's simplicity and it easily fits in with working shifts. However, for the past two days I have been peeing for England. Every 15 minutes I had to use the loo (worse than the twenty minute rule!)...havoc at work I can tell you. But it's early days yet and we will see how things transpire. I will continue to treat myself to real ales but in sensible moderation. Exceptions will be birthdays, holy days, commemorative days...that 364 days covered.
I shall away now to play on the internet and catch up with various blogs.
TTFN.

I told you I'd be back...


















Hooray!
The engineer came and did the technical wizardry and I can use t'internet. How would the world have survived for much longer without my rambling monologues. A new modem and tinkering with the oily bits has done the business. 3 Hoorahs for the engineers who keep alive the flaming torch of science in an everyday kind of way.
Lots to say but I'll do that later as we are orf to the cornershop...Sainsbury's.
TTFN.