Thursday, October 31, 2013

                    Happy Samhain!

Here are some Nachthexen....  

The Germans gave the 588th Night Bomber regiment this name because the aircrew were all females and flew dangerous, almost suicidal bombing missions against the enemy at night in small, slow biplanes. They deservedly won the admiration of their enemy and the numerous medals they were awarded as well as proving they were not to be defeated by male chauvinism and stupidity displayed by their own side.
Here is a link to the history of these brave women who rode their "broomsticks" against all kinds of obstacles, both human and natural.

p.s. For those who have a further interest this may be of interest by Jessica Leigh Bhuvasorakul.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

I have to admit that tonight I am blogging whilst under the influence... of some excellent stout from B & M. Having had nearly two weeks of good behaviour with low fat, low sugar healthy food and very little alcohol I decided to go on the lash tonight, albeit seated at my laptop. A family crisis with No. 1 has been resolved and I felt the need to loosen the self imposed bonds. He is ready to leave but not prepared for leaving and an ill judged tantrum would, as I put it to him be "jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire". Happily, things are settled for now...

I also felt that I'd wasted the last several weeks when I could have been out changing the world although Mrs C put it into perspective with her comment that the past twenty plus years of highly stressful work where my default position was "highly wound coiled spring" required some time and space to adjust the tension.  Hence my need to loosen those bonds and just relax. A discussion with my son about education has reawakened my desire to complete my degree and to consider studying towards a masters degree. Lincoln uni offer an MA in mediaeval studies which, although essentially 'useless' for modern life does sound wonderful to me. My plans are now beginning to take shape: part time work whilst I complete my degree via the Open University and then next autumn I commence on  the MA as mentioned. I have a post grad cert and a half but that's in social care / AMHP & BIA work. My head always points to the latter whilst my heart says "History!"...
To complicate matters further a former work colleague has asked me to consider setting up a company as self employed consultants in AMHP / BIA work, particularly the latter. I have huge moral and ethical problems with that which hastened my move to early retirement. We will meet to discuss it further because from a hard headed perspective such a move equates to "gold in them thar hills" as well fulfilling the use of my knowledge, experience and qualifications. I can also justify my position as serving the interests of the recipient and the wider community... if only I believed that?  We both know exactly what the local trusts charge for their service and we can undercut them plus... we have huge knowledge and experience compared with the majority of our competitors (colleagues) and our costs will be minimal (PC's including necessary software, an accountant, our own vehicles and advertising our services to local authorities whom we already have contacts with).  It is tempting but I have reached the point where I do prefer a quieter life and I truly cannot bear Janus faced managerial types who if they found honesty would try to sell it as a commodity.


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Dive dive dive...

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Yesterday I wrote of "battening down the hatches" and someone provided me with this information... Winter is on its way. Oh noes!! All joking aside, with the utilities again hiking up their prices, one way austerity and people, particularly the elderly, having to decide between eating or heating, this winter may well be a dreadful one for many. I say one way austerity because politicians, bankers, managerial types in both the private and public sectors do not appear to be overly effected by austerity. Reading stories of food banks, an increase in shop lifting and homelessness increasing does not bode well for the future. The headlines are sadly already prepared for the first winter deaths of elderly people and the usual insulated from reality politicians will jump on the bandwagon. I guess what we can do is look out for our neighbours, donate to food banks and local charities and prod the local councillors, etc...

Winter woollies, thick socks and boots are all being dragged out of cupboards and readied for the predicted snow. The one thing I am thankful for is that I will not be driving in it. However, for all of those who have to go out in it my fingers are crossed and that it is the met office and media making predictions that do not come true. Time will tell....


Saturday, October 12, 2013

The Zombie apocalypse apparently hit Grimsby today. Being sensible zombies they opted for beer instead of brains although...  I thought it was a unique wedding until I realised they were walking into town pursued by a gaggle of photographers and transport to a zombie wedding would involve a beribboned hearse or ambulance.

Since the demise of Mog it has been a subdued and quiet household particularly with No.1 son away in Newcastle where he is staying with his girlfriend. The change in weather to wet and windy with added rain and wind has seen us batten down the hatches. LE's cat Louis has settled in and he has ventured into the garden despite his fear of loud noises. The building site and wind blown objects understandably frightened him but he still continues to go out. He is no replacement for Mog but he's a welcome addition to the household. With the dark evenings and changed weather I am considering a winter home brew and tackling the garden preparatory for the winter. Tomato plants all gone except for two and the chilli plants will stay for now. I don't think I will be returning to employment until next year as I have had no responses to my various non - nursing applications. I'll enjoy the time off and commence my search in earnest after the new year and it will be a return to nursing. As much as I deny it, nursing is in my blood and I enjoy the work although the politics, managerial bollocks and P.C. idiots piss me off. I guess that's par for the course within the public sector. With the extra time off and no pressure to return I will fit in a few trips further afield including my promise to return to Whitby with a decent camera.

Monday, October 07, 2013

The cat pictured as my avi for this blog was found dead this morning by my neighbours. He was curled up and appeared to be sleeping when I saw him. Mog was about thirteen years old and he was the youngest of the three cats so I am very surprised he is the first to go.

Mrs C believes he may have been poisoned but having seen and then removed his body he appeared to have died suddenly and peacefully in his sleep. Poor old fella. When he came to us from "Cats Protection" he was called Pikachu and he arrived with his brother. No 1 son renamed them Mog and Bert although sadly Bert was killed by a car a few months later.

‘Tis false that all of pussy’s race
Regard not person but the place,
For here lies one who, could she tell
Her stories by some magic spell,
Would, from the quitted barn and grove,
Her sporting haunts, to show her love,
At sound of footsteps, absent long,
Of those she soothed with purring song,
Leap to their arms in fond embrace,
For love of them, and not for place.
from the tombstone of a cat, Meaford Hall, near Stone, Staffordshire, England.


Friday, October 04, 2013

Having had a brief absence from blogging and dealing with real life stuff I now have time to blog. The picture above shows the last flowering of our summer roses. A unexpected bonus because I'd believed that was it. The mild weather has encouraged this late flowering and I am still picking tomatoes and chillies by the bowlful. LE is up for the weekend from London for a wedding and she has agreed to bring the home grown fruits back to her friends there. The windfall with tomatoes, chillies, apples and blackberries from the neighbours has been excellent this year. Hopefully we will have similar summers in the future. The adherents of AGW continue to tell horror stories as they manipulate the data to perpetuate their demands for increased green taxes when the evidence appears to show a period of global cooling is coming our way. We may be in for a very cold winter although as far as climate change is concerned I'll try to keep an open mind and attempt to comprehend the evidence. The plants aren't the only things enjoying the mild weather...

We have acquired a fourth cat and the feline power balance has been upskittled within our household. LE couldn't take her cat Louis with her and we have offered him a home. A week on and he is now wandering the house and exploring. He's an extremely large black cat and a big softy. He gets on well with the mutt although she was initially freaked out by a strange cat in the house. Some eye balling and stand-offs with the other cats including lots of howling but no fisticuffs... yet. The past week included my helping LE to move stuff, several trips to the dump to get rid of rubbish and applying for a couple of part time jobs. I haven't had any replies to the latter but I am keeping an eye out for any suitable work locally. Preferably part time, local, with little responsibility and when I finish work I leave it behind me as I walk out of the door. I haven't applied for any nursing jobs because that will be my last resort if nothing else pops up.
I also celebrated my birthday last week and after requests from various family and friends my suggestion that kindle vouchers would be welcomed, I have a shed load of virtual books to read as well as a couple of real books that weren't available on kindle. At the age of 53 years I find my needs are generally met and with the winter coming a good book, an excellent malt whisky and feet up by the fire suits me fine. A delightful  Ardmore whisky has been added to the store for the months ahead. I also realised that my passport needs renewing after I had looked at some short trips over to Europe I am considering next year. That's ten years since the last one and boy have those years gone quickly. Anyhow, No.1 is off to Newcastle again for the weekend and this will be his third trip within the last five weeks. He'll be the next to fly the nest... c'est la vie.