..

Wednesday, 30 September 2020

Undulating...

 

Now There’s a good word.

# The hills are alive with...

The sound of Undulations #

I sang as I ran 

(use your imagination here, ok?)

A magnificent day on the 

Long Mynd... mynd I said!?!




As undulations go you must admit this is pretty spectacular?

We took a picnic.  Ellie enjoyed her two hours romping and yomping over the heather.  With tongue hanging out she zoomed off and like a good sheepdog crossed with a Sky Tours rep kept doubling back to check whether the party of old dears were keeping up.  We were!  Stopping every hundred yards or so to admire the view, well that was our excuse?  The weather was glorious, our legs were strong as we strode over, round and up the undulations, causing us not a puff or a pant, nor yet a reprogramming of the old pacemakers.  This having a dog is so invigorating for the heart, soul and mind, not to mention the undulations...







Monday, 28 September 2020

Floating off on a....


cloud of poppy derivatives might be the way Audrey goes?
She has had a nasty fall getting out of bed to get a glass of water, the walking frame to help her, lies quietly in wait to catch her out.  The wheels take off with her in tow and down she goes.  This time grazing her knee, hitting her head and bruising vertebra in her back.
Audrey stayed overnight in hospital where they wanted her to stay for a few weeks for pain relief and physio.  Well, one night was enough so she was sent home at her insistence, with morphine, 12 hourly and three hourly doses.  Her GP will visit today and assess her and decide on the way forward.  Audrey has two very good friends who are very much onside for her to stay in her own home.  One is keeping us up to date with what is going on.  He is writing this morning to update her doctor as to exactly what has transpired over the last couple of months.  
What a worry it all is.
Morphine, the talk of palliative care, all this for a 96 year old, do they know something we don't?
All of this with the ever constant worry of the virus...


  

Saturday, 26 September 2020

Well there’s a...

a thing!  

It has been an eventful few days.  To start with I am now talking to you from the command deck of Starship Enterprise. 

The first problem is...

Who is this wizen old crone that has got in on the act of this facial recognition carry-on?

I’ve been hacked and hacked off is how I am feeling.  This old lass makes Cruella De Ville look a positive pussy cat.  The grumpier she looks the more afeared I am.

The techwhizz came and instructed me on the finer points of lightly chiselling on a tablet of stone.

Sadly the printer had a fit of pique and wouldn’t play. So that nice John Lewis Esq. is as we speak preparing to send me a compatible, all singing, all dancing printer worthy of Capt. Kirk aka as Lettice manning the bridge.





 


Thursday, 24 September 2020

I must confess...

I have without too much faff got a handle on the new blogger format. While I impatiently wait for the new flat thing to arrive,(today... Yay!) it will then be ‘frustration central’ as I get a handle on the new equipment.  Added to which I have to get a man in to turn me on, as it were!  A little knowledge is a bad thing, as in this house we are both as gormless as each other... worrying but there you are!

My next idle thought is, what is the form for writing emails these days? Those in the know seem to just launch into what they are saying without a by your leave, then don’t even bother to sign oft.

What is a woman of the quill pen era to do?  Follow suit or stick to the old ways?  I haven’t the foggiest?  By my stocking tops I am pulling myself into the 21st century, so I have a very real need to know about such things, so answers on a postcard would be much appreciated!


 

Wednesday, 23 September 2020

Bare with me...

okay?  

The air quality yesterday in Shropshire was so poor he could have been Jack the Ripper cruising the Whitechapel Road looking for his next victim.  London in those days was famous for its pea soup fog, Tuesday had a very similar feel?

With top hat firmly in place and a swirl of his black cloak we set off.

We were on a mission to buy me a new flat thing as this one is at full capacity.  As we had a 20+ mile journey, himself phoned up the tablet shop to see if our trip would finish up with me getting what I required.

‘Yes, we have a range for you to choose from in stock!’

We set off after a good final mornings training session with Helen our lovely dog training girl. To call it dog training is a huge misnomer as it should be called human training.  Interestingly as we were saying our last goodbyes I got out the plinky-plonky sound machine for calming dogs and her view on them was very positive.  She is one helluva clued up lassie having been to university to do animal behaviour.  A friend of hers had done a dissertation on these very machines and found that yes they do work.  I have written here about it and I think some of you have bought one.  So that was an interesting last piece of information she imparted.  Anyway I am getting off the subject of Jack and his able assistant’s trip out.  The girl in the shop was poured into a pair of revealing cut off leggings, her bottom was fighting with the fabric for supremacy and winning; so much so that through the mesh material you could see her frilly thong being devoured by the not inconsiderable crack of her bott.  I would be the first to admit I have gone out tricked up in some outlandish outfits and having been a large-ish lass have sympathy, however this ensemble wasn’t in any way remotely business-like.  The heat was getting to her and who could blame her poured into Max Wall leggings of a clinging kind.  To add insult to injury she wasn’t the slightest bit interested in making a sale.  Added to which, at my request to buy the one I had decided upon, she said we haven’t got one in the shop!  Worse than that we won’t have any for up to four weeks.

‘Err, we were told you had some of each in stock and we have come a considerable way to buy one!’

This brought about a zilch response.  I swept out of the shop with a rather cutting...

‘Thank you for your help!’

Steam gently escaping, not only because it was a hot day and a wasted journey.  Not even the fact I had bought two more pencil sharpeners from Tiger could lighten my glowering mood!  I have a thing about so many things,pencil sharpeners are my latest little aberration... don’t ask!?!

Chuntering all the way through Waitrose and Sainsbury’s in readiness for the possible lockdown, even that didn’t calm my crotchety mood.  

‘I know what I will do I will buy one on line from John Lewis and find someone locally to transfer the info!’

The husband wasn’t impressed saying I was doing it arse about face.  Knowing all the while I have never very often been known to do things in the correct order!

And that is exactly what I have done, finding along the way a lovely sounding guy who will come along and jiggery-pokery our tablets, I am graciously giving mine to the husband who having dropped his, has to read his morning paper through the screen that has the same pea soup gloom as  London fog back in the day when Jack the Ripper roamed the streets of London.



Monday, 21 September 2020

In the casino on Gomera...

I said to Simon

‘Hurry up and get rid of those chips so we can leave!’

I wondered why he laughed?

My hair is getting thin, I know worrying about it is the last thing to do, however how do you stop worrying about it?  Any ideas?  I am off to get it cut today so maybe Bethan will know.

The garden is slowly taking shape, I am loving the outdoor pottering. Today I order the water feature.

The rat saga moves up a gear, the heavies are being rolled out ie the trap mentioned by gz.  The all singing all dancing, cost a fortune one is being returned as not fit for purpose, as another night it was tripped without a dead rat as reward.  I wouldn’t mind but not even a goldfish in a plastic bag as once upon a time you could win at the fair!

My place at the top of the list for the next available allotment is getting chilly, soon I will need bobble hat, mitts and an oxygen bottle as the air becomes thinner sitting at the summit.

Ellie is as joyful as ever.

Interesting times as we all wait with bated breath for the next moonshot offerings from our great leader!

The latest musing from the lass in Ludlow... toodle-pip!




Sunday, 20 September 2020

Mutiny on the...

 Bounty!

A change of tactics from Rolos to Bounty,(thanks to Hippo for the mention of Bounty bars) dark chocolate naturally!  My favourite.  Hold tight it isn’t you LL you are trying to kill, it is the rat!

The pieces of chocolate are taken if they are put in other places in the wood pile, but not in the area of the trap.  I rather cunningly suggested we have a teaser of way markers into the trap by way of encouragement.  So far it hasn’t worked.  The first time the trap was turned on the trip was sprung and... nothing?  Whether the rat got a ‘shiver me timbers’ tickle of a volt of shock, enough just to straighten tail and whiskers I really have no idea?  Or could we have wasted our money on a crap piece of kit?  Most likely!  Whatever the answer last night I watched as it hopped onto my very stylish hand crafted, with shells around the edge, huge water bowl on the top of the wall.  The freshly topped up water was obviously to his/her liking as leisurely it drunk its fill.  Adding insult to injury it perched to have a little light wash of the whiskers!  I stood with steam escaping the old ear holes with anger pulsing through every fibre.  If only I could harvest the anger, Boris wouldn’t need to upgrade our nuclear power plants just plug me into the ruddy mains!





Friday, 18 September 2020

Chuntering on...

 Thoughts, a mish-mash of them.

I am surprising myself by getting on okay with the new blogger format.  Sadly an old dear’s trick to not want to move with the times and embrace change... guilty!

My garden is bringing me joy as I get it more to my taste of exuberant plants and flowers showing me the way.  Giving them carte blanche to pop up where they will.  Trouble is I just need them to get a wiggle on and grow! Patience is a virtue so I am told, although not one on my advice note on arrival in the world?

Our new regime is to book two slots a week at local National Trust properties and walk Ellie in pastures new.  Himself is a lifetime member, so as we feel guilty about not adding to their coffers we have on arrival a cappuccino apiece, an egg and cress sandwich to share on our walk and pushing the boat out a bottle of cloudy apple juice.  We sure know how to live life to the full!  That is our plan for today, as yesterday I worked all day in the garden orchestrating the ordered chaos.  So a day walking will get a different set of muscles into play.

Two days of the week I am more grumpy than usual... is that possible?  Yes, and the reason is I am on the 5:2 blooming diet.  This week’s weight update... less than a pound lost... memo to self... don’t fill your ruddy boots on the other days... duh!?!

I am seriously thinking of taking up yoga again, after my vertigo first put in an appearance there, I don’t mind admitting I am nervous.  Although this time I would be far more sedate and not have any old truck with my usual bull at a gate all or nothing MO!  You know the sort, not content with fingertips on the floor, elbows!?! And another thing, the ‘gentle’ one of turning your head up, down, right and left, that was when it kicked off.  Me, deciding in my ‘infinite wisdom’ would turn my head as far as possible in each direction, why?  No idea?  Fool, stupid ruddy idiot!  That taught me a lesson, and how!

Photo’s of our day out to Croft Castle.  An ancient gnarled oak and I just love the face guarding the house of whoever lives within.




I feel strangely liberated about not having a followers gadget on my blog, so a good wheeze to remove it!

My cheerfulness gene is re-emerging from its slumbers.

Friday night, a flute of bubbles, the bottle I make last over the weekend, just wish I could manage food with the same aplomb?  I love to cook, so I suppose it follows I love to eat?


Thursday, 17 September 2020

No matter how hard I try...

 I just can’t get to fifty!

Wot?  Is that a problem?

No, no, not age but followers!

If only?

It really makes me smile that I did for a nano second get to the mythical number of 50, then back to 49, now 48.

Was it something I said?

Yes, it probably was.

Interesting.  More interesting me taking any notice and pretending not to care!?!

Is this how shallow I have become I idly wonder?  I do hope not!

Now you see them, now you don’t!



Wednesday, 16 September 2020

‘Guilty as charged m’lud!’

 The balls have bitten the dust.

Five down and just four to go, which out of the goodness of my heart I will graciously allow to stay.  How many box balls does a girl want I ask you?  The humongous shrub roses have also been given away, leaving just the climbing roses over the garden room, two spilling into the Wrenery and one making a valiant effort to hide the obelisk.

I ought to say I am not a formal garden designer type gardener. The previous owner, a garden designer I feel hovering just at my left shoulder as I bear arms by way of a sodding spade.  With valour in every sod turned, I dig my way out of her perfection patch.  Her breath on the back of my neck quite gives me the heebeegeebees as I make my milk-maid way through the wildflower meadow vision I have of a postage stamp garden!  

I am not above a little light pilfering as I wander lonely as a cloud through Ludlow.  With the sleight of hand a shop lifter would be proud, I gather seed heads while I may as I, to all intents and purposes stop to admire a plant in a garden that has made my sap rise!  I have no shame, Mother Nature smiles as I collect her bounty and redistribute it as I see fit. 

This social distancing certainly suits me as happy as Larry, I potter, dream and scheme in my little piece of the rolling Shropshire Hills.

Slowly the garden is being ‘Letticed!’




Tuesday, 15 September 2020

Rat a tat attack, attack...

An update!

The rat has we think taken up residence in the space of the little roof covering the log pile.

The bait as yet hasn’t been looked at.  Today we will try the Rolo amuse bouche!  Just got to buy them and try not to eat too many!  The thing is I am suddenly not amused, mainly because the joy I got from feeding the birds will have to be stopped, as the food and water is the huge appeal and honestly who can blame them?  We haven’t seen the hedgehogs for a couple of weeks now and interestingly the rat completely ignores the mealworms put out in the box for the hedgehogs so maybe their suspicious nature means enclosed areas pose a danger?  I do know they are very canny, we just have to be even cannier!?!  I hate killing anything, however the closer they are getting to the house and coming in for winter is a worry, so sadly go they must!

Ellie isn’t in the least bit interested, in fact if anything I think she is frightened by their presence in the garden.

Part of me thinks that if we hadn’t started putting on the light to watch the hedgehogs we would never have known of their living along side us and let’s face it we all live in close contact to wildlife of many sorts.  Rats seem to be the big bad boys of the underworld.

Am I talking myself out of killing them I idly wonder?  What do you think?


Monday, 14 September 2020

Call me an old...

 Cynic, I don’t care!

The parcel has landed and here is a photo to prove it!?!

Now I must confess I am not very au fait with pornography however to me this looks very much like the inside of a porn star’s thigh.



So that’s okay then?  The parcel has been delivered. Now I wait to hear what state it arrived in?  

You just have to laugh!


Rats tails...

 Did you know that as ‘Lockdown 2, The Sequel’ threatens our very existence I have decided now is the perfect opportunity to study the life of rats.  My very ‘off the wall’ idea is, I might apply to go on Mastermind, bearing in mind my success on Masterchef, one of my specialist subjects could be the life and times of the very upper-crust Ludlow rat.  A far more refined rat than your usual London sewer rat, you understand?

Added to which as I sit reclining in my recliner, well I would wouldn’t I?  It would be churlish as I gaze out into the Wrenery to not acknowledge the rats ever creeping bare faced cheek of not giving a stuff about our presence.  Let’s face it they were here first, so I suppose I don’t blame them.

As I sit and watch their antics just a pane of glass thickness away, the thing that comes to mind is that it would appear there is enough meat on a rat’s tale to feed a family of four.  That is obviously if lockdown really bites and folk can’t get out to Aldi!

Our live and let live mantra has sadly gone out of the window, because during lockdown they are bound to be bonking for Boris so the patter of tiny feet won’t only be heard in Downing Street.  The rat I have seen not only has a very meaty tail but a suspiciously fat tummy to add insult to injury.  

I hardly know how to admit to this but himself has invested in a very humane way to despatch of the aforesaid furry family.  

The Pest Stop Electronic Rat Killer is his new toy. Primed with peanut butter we have set it up for a few freebie nights of 

‘Eat Out to Help Out’ an idea lifted from one Rishi Sunak.  Once lulled into trusting; the Albert Pierrepoint of Ludlow will turn on the power.

Err, there is one snag though, thus far the rats have given the peanut butter a disdainful whisker quiver of disapproval, sensibly leaving well alone!

Maybe I should sit at home scoffing peanut butter and let the rat take my place on Mastermind... specialist subject...

‘Gormless Human Beings Trying and Failing to make their way in the Rat Race’






Sunday, 13 September 2020

Hero to zero...

For years I have sent food parcels to folk, don’t ask, it’s what I do.  I have always used Hermes without any cause for complaint.

For very little money they have successfully carried my foodie gifts to the ‘boys’ in the Highlands.  That is until the last parcel which is somewhere lost in the system.  Even taking into account my at least monthly use of their services.  One parcel going astray isn’t too bad.  That is until you try to check with a real person what the problem is?  Their customer service is appalling, you just can’t make any headway, you get the same thing trotted out by automated responses.  When you do have the patience to persevere, they then ask if you would like to speak to an advisor 

‘Yes!’

what happens next is

YOU GET RUDDY CUT OFF!

The funny thing is most people I have spoken to about Hermes on the occasions I have been crowing about what a wonderful firm they are have looked and sounded exactly as I sound now...

flaming hacked off!


Iain has said when the parcel arrives he will phone.  My tracking of the parcel has hit a huge wall of indifference.

The contents will if they do arrive be as follows...

The cake... stale

The biscuits... soft

The ginger crunch...

flabby

The jar of jam meets the pickle amongst the shards of glass and decides on a little light fertilisation.  Who knows in the siding of lost Hermes parcels, unwittingly I may have found an antidote to the flaming virus, trouble is no one will know!?!

The two pairs of Poundland reading glasses will be tangled together in an embrace of metal and bottle end lens. Call them four eyes!

In my book now Hermes will be forever the Carrier of Customer Cock Ups.


I am nothing if not fickle...

‘Now where is the number of the 

Ruddy Royal Mail?







Saturday, 12 September 2020

We asked her opinion...

as to whether we should visit?
After months of keeping herself safe from all comers we weren’t sure of her reply.
She said ‘Yes’
The trouble is, the time is rapidly approaching that we won’t have the choice.  With my old dad’s words echoing in my head...
‘It’s what you do for people when they’re alive that counts!’
I was keen we went.

I am a feeder.  That is what gives me pleasure, so armed with mini meat pies aplenty, cheese scones and the little Christmas pudding petit four she loves, off we went before the only food she will require is of the celestial kind!
Audrey was very frail, a shock I don’t mind admitting.
I had made a large meat pie for us to share and mini ones for her to have in the freezer.  The scones I made before we set off as scones are only at their very best the day they are made.  On arrival I sorted out the food to be frozen and into the freezer it all went pronto!
We sat and chatted, well to be more precise we sat and listened!
We are executors and I have been tasked with breaking the news of her death to her son.  Who after years of living rough is now in a hostel.  With all of this I wanted to be very clear about her exact wishes as to how I was to 
proceed.  
We enjoyed a lovely meal together with her other executor, who together with another chum have ensured she stays in her flat without carers.
I recounted how the petit four had taken the dregs of a bottle of spicy rum, ditto cognac and a shot of single malt!  Audrey suggested the husband get a bottle of Courvoisier out of the drinks cupboard as she had three bottles too many!  I graciously accepted, as with the exception of the single malt, spirits in this house are used purely for culinary purposes.


My lovely ‘Mum’
96 on the 15th.

Sunday, 6 September 2020

I bought a coat...

a corduroy coat.  Cut from the cloth of dreams, my pash for many a year, to own a corduroy coat.
Yesterday my world tipped on its axis a micrometer width of whisker as I happened upon it in a charity shop.  Weighing in at least three sizes too big.  Was that a problem?  
Oh dear me no,  not after the time I have patiently waited for that very coat to cross my path.
The size of a poachers coat,  rabbit a plenty, a brace of pheasant, a wild salmon or two I could slip so easily into the capacious confines of my new corduroy Crombie?  
I could entertain a man within and nobody would be any the wiser.
A man for all reasons lost in a coat for all seasons.

Alright the shoulders skulk half way down my upper arms, hoping no one will notice their decline and fall. For once I can accommodate my matronly bosoom comfortably buttoned up, with ample room to spare.  A nipple nirvana.  My cups  runneth over... encased in corduroy.


Saturday, 5 September 2020

Since I was six...

I have been on a quest...
A strange thing to be on, since such a ripe old age?
I ought to explain.
We went on holiday to Le Touquet, in the hotel we stayed, my abiding memory over all these years was the glorious taste of the bread and butter served at all meals. I have Inspector Clouseau searched high and low, none higher than royal households, none lower than cheapo supermarkets and with the same degree of success you might expect from Insp. C...
abject failure!
Until now, when Lo and Behold I have got as close as I am ever going to get in one Mr Aldi emporium, yes you heard it first here folks!
Roll of drums please, with swirl of cloak and much celebration I am pleased to announce the winner of my lifelong search...


Green Meadow
Freshly churned
Welsh butter: who would have thought it?


Me and my mum: little knowing my life would be dominated by the start of a lifetimes search.  
Just the bread now to find, or maybe the flour for me to recreate...

Friday, 4 September 2020

I’m lost for...

words.
‘Writer’s block!’ 
she grandly cried. 
You know the sort...
I know him, I just can’t think of his name. I have a cunning plan alright, I am fully aware it’s cheating, but I will google him..... 
Err!  How are you going to do that LL if you don’t know his frigging name?  The next thing that springs to mind is maybe it’s Kindergarten early onset ...
You know what?
Normal service will be resumed
as soon as possible...
if I can only remember where I put my typewriter...


Life on the

allotment.  A flavour…   Ludlow town wall stands guard    No Dig is the way forward Charles Dowding