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January
31
- Up around 9:15am after very little sleep again! 15C in, 10C out. Grey and damp. Terry Wogan has died . . . walked BGdns and the harbour for my coffee. Shopped for a few supplies and then straight home through town. . . ate two ham, cheese and mayo baps with crisps followed by a banana . . . napped . . . very much needed a break from the PC, and just TVd the night away hardly moving . . ate three mini doughnuts followed later by four sausages in baps, bowls of creamy co-co pops and some chocolate. . .promptly fell asleep in the chair again!? I really am starting to wonder if there's something weird going on with me with blood sugar levels or something. As soon as I eat, I can't help but fall asleep so it seems! As a result, I keep putting off eating until as late as I can reasonably get away with. Catch 22? . . to bed around 2:30am.
30 - (Woken) up around 8am. 15C in, 6C out. Grey. . . walked BGdns. My note about the pink guitar being handed in, had been moved to the OTHER searchlight bunker (where there were lots of drinks bottles, beer cans, and rubbish left behind)!? I ended up putting the note back in the other gun emplacement where the guitar had been left - and of course cleared up all the rubbish and took it all to a bin - again! . . carried on down to the harbour for a scout around for any photo worthy scenes, etc. A few days ago now, all the HUGE timber masts etc from the heritage trawler 'Leader' were removed from the boat at some point, and somehow (crane? forklift?) placed on pallets etc under cover of the old fish market roof, to enable them to all be sanded down and re-varnished, etc. They even subsequently ended up having security fencing put up around it all. As such, it isn't quite so easy for me to sit in my 'usual' place under there to drink my coffee at the moment (although when no-one is around, I HAVE been taking the liberty of moving/squeezing past the fencing, and sitting there nonetheless - and 'benefitting' from the fencing keeping people away, so I'm not forced into mind-numbingly meaningless conversations with anyone!). :o( This morning, in the abscence of rain, I ended up aiming to sit on the opposite side of the harbour near the old coastguard station. Grabbed a couple of photos before sitting down, and then ended up getting into a lengthy conversation with a young guy with an expensive camera and even more expensive MASSIVE lens. I've seen him around the place on more than one occasion now, and kinda recognise and know a 'little' about him from his posts on the 'Devon & Brixham Photo's' Facebook page we both post to. I can't recall the exact figure, but it turns out his camera kit was worth 'thousands'!!!! Ok - so the quality/resolution of the images he acheives ARE superb, but my little 200, 'in my pocket' camcorder manages a much higher zoom, and overall, I wouldn't change it for equipment like his if you paid me. No way would I want to have to lug SO much heavy/expensive kit around like that. Yep - I'm very happy with my little camcorder thank you very much. lol . . whilst we were engaged in (polite) conversation, a couple of religious guys (I forget (and care not) which Jesus based faith they were trying to promote) came wandering over just as I was unscrewing the top of my one-cup coffee flask. They tried to give me a religious pamflet in a plastic bag, complete with some sort of chocolate biscuit! I made some sort of joke of politely declining. I DID however still end up with them giving me a chocolate biscuit to have with my coffee! lol As it turned out, I actually couldn't manage to eat it with my mouth full of false and rotting teeth, so Bella ended up with most of it. What on earth IS it which goes through the minds of such religious people I wonder? What exactly do they imagine they are actually acheiving by going round giving such stuff to people like that? Frankly, I think they are pathetically 'simple-minded'! Part of me would like to send them over to Syria with their chocolate biscuits, and see how THAT turns out for them!! Get REAL you silly SILLY people! . . . eventually tore myself away from the photographer guy and rushed home, and arrived 'just' as mum had reached my front door. . chats etc until mid afternoon . . . PCd for HOURS, editing down the 'Four Hours in Torbay' video, but trying to retain some of the key moments, to show what it is these extraordinary guys go through, 'all in a day's work'! . . set it uploading to Youtube around 11pm. Turned out to be a three hour upload - but straight forward, rapidly processed and successful this time! :o( . . . TVd . . ate a steak and kidney pie with crisps, a banana, three mini doughnuts, a couple of biscuits and some chocolate. . promptly fell asleep in the chair until around 2:30am. . straight to bed but couldn't sleep, so got up and posted links to the new video on Facebook etc before going back to bed to toss and turn for ages before finally to sleep.
29 - Up around 8:15am after really almost no sleep at all!! Headachey and a bit woozy. The last annadin tablet in the house for breakfast. 15C in, 9C out. Rain and blowing a gale again . . . walked Bgdns in full weather gear and headed straight for my favourite lower searchlight gun emplacement to shelter from the rain. As I approached the bunker, it became clear that an old guy had been 'sleeping rough' in there, and was just getting-up/packing up all his stuff in there! Normally under such circumstances, I would have steered clear and left them to it, but on this occasion, it was raining quite a bit, and I was just was not in the mood to be 'forced' to go elsewhere and be out in the rain for his benefit. I entered the bunker and tried to make some conversation by asking if he was just packing up, and as such, he wouldn't mind me taking shelter there. He muttered something or other and busied himself packing up. Whilst he did so, out of the corner of my eye, I thought I saw his 'belt' was actually a stiff piece of wire!!? I also noticed that propped against the bunker wall was a new-looking PINK acoustic guitar (exactly the type which a charity shop in town has been selling new, for just under 50). That was a bit weird I thought - to say the least. How on earth does a presumably homeless person, end up buying himself a brand-new beginners/childs guitar - and a pink one at that!??? I tried to make further conversation by asking if he played guitar, but he didn't seem to want to respond, so I just left it. I THEN noticed his boots. They were obviously new - light 'yellow' workboots - and they STILL had the manufacturers tags attached, even though he was wearing them!!?? Aha - I guessed THAT partially explains the box I'd found in there yesterday, with the money in! That got me feeling a bit guilty about having pocketed the small change I'd found in the box yesterday! I tried to start a conversation again by remarking that he had new boots etc. That I think saw him start to get a bit defensive in his response, so I quickly explained ('pointedly') that I'd cleared away the rubbish I'd found littering the place yesterday, and had found and kept some small change in the box he'd left behind. I didn't have the right change on me, and ended up giving him a 2 coin instead!! He accepted it without any intelligible response. (Jeeze, WHAT has my life become? I end up clearing up the mess HE left behind - and 'I' PAY for the f***ing privilege!!) . I ended up standing in a corner of the bunker with Bella, focusing my camcorder on a small fishing boat that was motionless just out past the end of the breakwater. 'Boat' and 'motionless' doesn't usually go together, and it quickly became apparant my attention was justified. Their scallop gear was 'hung up' on some seabed debris (like I've seen happen to several other scallopers, brave or foolhardy enough to dredge right there!). Every time they tried to raise their gear, the boat would keel right over at what seemed to ME to be a terrifyingly dangerous angle. . my steadfast 'presence' in the bunker, seemed to speed the homless guy's packing-up, and my comments about 'the rubbish' I'd cleared up yesterday, also seemed to have an effect. By the time he was done, he'd ALSO collected up ALL his rubbish (which you can guarantee he wouldn't have done if I hadn't been stood nearby), and had filled the large plastic 'Sports-Direct' holdall he had with him. As he left the bunker (without comment) I wished him 'have a good day', as is my habit when encountering people around the place. Bizarrely, off he went in the POURING rain, carrying not only his rucksack on his back, the sports direct holdall of litter, and another holdall containing his sleeping bag/bedding, but also carrying the pink guitar - in his hand - completely exposed to the rain! Something very, VERY strange about that, to me. (If I'd had to put money on it, I'd have betted the guitar was stolen - but then perhaps that's just because of how the world worked when I was back in Bristol? Things ARE often 'different' down here?) . . . stayed hanging around in the gun emplacement for AGES, occasionaly filming the stuck fishing boat, whenever there appeared to be some activity aboard. At length, I determined they were quite possibly just sitting tight and waiting for the tide to fall before having another go at getting their gear back and setting themselves free. By now I was cold and desperate for the loo, so I eventually carried-on down to the harbour, and sheltered under the old fish market roof for my coffee. Whilst I was sat under there (unseen?), the homeless guy walked past, with his rucsack on, but WITHOUT the pink guitar OR the other stuff he'd carried away from the gun emplacement with him earlier? . . . eventually couldn't resist, and headed back in the direction of BGdns, to see what progress the stuck fishing boat had made at freeing itself. . would you believe it! Along the way, just below the yacht club, I encountered the homeless guy's big 'Sports Direct' holdall full of rubbish, left on the coastal path NEXT to a refuse bin. FFS. He couldn't even be bothered to put it IN the bin? Unlikely, but I imagined it was possible he was returning for it, so I just walked on by and left it where it was. . . still raining, I headed straight back to the gun emplacement. The fishing boat was unmoved, STILL stuck out in the bay!! Image of a guitar abandoned in a Battery Gardens bunker More bizarrely - propped up against the back wall of the gun emplacement, sat on the muddy floor completely on its own, was the pink guitar!!!!?????? WTF???? I had a closer look at it. The label inside the body confirmed it WAS indeed from a Sue Ryder charity shop as I'd suspected. It even still had the remnants of a price ticket stuck on the top of the neck. I was actually rather disappointed to find that one of the (new) strings was missing. The remaining strings were woefully out of tune, and I couldn't resist tuning them as best I could and having a bit of a strum, but the missing string made playing anything too difficult for me, and I soon gave up. Shame - it would have been fun to wait for the fishing boat to free iteself, whilst having a play. lol . . waited and filmed, and at length, after much gas-torch cutting and hard work by the crew in the pouring rain, the boat eventually managed to get its gear back on board and free itself from the submerged cables and debris. They'd been stuck there waiting and battling like that for at least four hours that 'I' knew of!! Poor devils. NOT a good day at the office! . . . right - now what the hell do I do about this pink guitar? It just SO didn't seem right to just leave it there like that. Maybe the homeless guy was going to return for it later? The trouble for ME, with just leaving it there like that, was that it was HIGHLY likely to end up just being smashed-up and destroyed by the next passing yob. I was of course also highly suspicious that it 'may' have been stolen. What to do, what to do? . . . I ended up leaving it there and walking in the rain all the way back down town and to the Sue Ryder charity shop in the high street, intending to try to see if they'd either sold one to a homeless guy, or 'lost' one. After having laboriously attempted to explain the situation, the old woman volunteer on the till knew nothing, and the manager had just gone out, so I was STILL unsure as to what I should do about it. (I guess most people would have just forgotten about it and gone about their own business? Sadly my mind doesn't so easily do that!) At length, I suggested to the woman in the store, that if she could let me have a bin liner to cover it in the rain, I'd go get the guitar and leave it with them. She gave me a bin liner and a Sue Ryder charity shop sack, and also allowed me to have one of their leaflets, on which I wrote a note which I intended to leave in the gun emplacement, saying the guitar had been handed in to the shop. . I walked in the rain all the way back up to BGdns, retrieved the guitar (suprisingly to ME, still there), warpped it up in the plastic bags, left the note I'd written (in case the homeless guy returned for it), and then walked with it in the rain all the way back. I DID actually stop at the bin by the yacht club on the way back, emptied out all the rubbish from the Sports Direct holdall, put the guitar in that, and then carried it back to the store like that!! . back at the store, the manager was now returned, but she had no knowledge of having sold a pink guitar to an old homeless guy, nor having had one 'go missing'. She did however confirm that others of their stores around Torbay sold them aswell - so, no answers there! Oh well - I gave them my name and address, and left the guitar and Sports Direct bag with them! . ended up feeling VERY uneasy about the whole business. Have I just deprived some poor homeless guy of his honestly bought guitar? Am I gonna be 'safe' if I encounter him again? He's bound to put two and two together and assume it was me who 'removed' it! Ohhhhhh - bugger! I SO wish I could just walk on by and ignore such things like everyone else seems to! Very 'unsettled' by the whole business!! . . .straight home through town, tired-out after SO much walking and hanging around for hours in the rain, etc . . . phoned up and renewed my house insurance which is due. Unusually, to simply renew the existing policy was only a couple of s more than last year, so rather than have all the hassle of having to shop around for cheaper (again), I just renewed. . . PCd photos for a bit . . .rushed to cook and eat two chicken kievs with chips . . .DF called in for arguments. . ate biscuits and then bowls of rice krispies and a little chocolate . . to bed around 1:30am after waking in the chair in front the TV and fire again!
28 - Up around 8am. 15C in, 1C out. Sunny. . well, after all those hours, it would appear that the 'Behind The Scenes Of A Countryfile Report' footage, HAS finally successfully uploaded to Youtube. Posted links on a couple of Facebook pages. I AM of course all paranoid and up-tight that for 'some' reason 'someone' will complain and demand I remove it. Time will tell. . . walked BGdns. A stunning blue sky, calm, sunny morning. SUCH a nice change from constantly being soaked these last couple of days. Ended up briefly pointing the camera at a boat or two from the usual searchlight gun emplacement, but somehow my heart wasn't in it this morning and I soon stopped. A big cardboard box which had been the packaging to a pair of new 'Sports Direct' workboots had strangely been left as litter in the bunker. Stranger still, was that in amongst all the packaging inside the box was 1.46 in small change? I happily pocketed the money and then walked the box to the nearest waste bin. How weird is that, that someone should have ended up presumably putting on a new pair of boots and walking off in them from the gun emplacement like that!????? . Carried on down to the harbour and then eventually on out to the breakwater beach end of the breakwater. Didn't hang around there for long. A brisk cold wind blowing in made it feel quite unpleasant there - or maybe it was just how 'fragile' I was feeling generally. Headed back to the harbour for a while more before ultimately heading straight home through town. Spotted a discarded e-cig with a broken cartomiser in a flower pot outside a charity shop. Checked the shop had no objections and then took it with me. The cartomiser may be broken, but nothing wrong with the battery I bet. . . ate the remaining buttery mixed veg and chopped ham from yesterday with some crisps and then returned to bed. . slept for several hours until around 6:30pm. . . PCd a bit of this. Nothing wrong with that salvaged Ego-T e-cig battery. :o) . . spent the next MANY hours sorting out stills from the last couple of days and making posts to facebook pages. Didn't finish until long past 1am! . . TVd briefly and ate a chicken and mushroom pastry slice with crisps followed by a banana and some chocolate. . to bed well gone 2:30am!! Ended up having some awful sleep, waking up from persistant nightmares! In the nightmare, Bella had run off and gone missing somewhere, and I was frantically searching for her. The community I encountered didn't seem to trust me, sneakily took my mobile phone, and went through all the data, and ultimately took me prisoner. I woke myself up when it seemed likely from their teeth that they were all vampires and closing in for ???
27 - Up at 7:45am. 15C in, 11C out. Still raining and blowing. . .a repeat of yesterday. Walked BGdns in the pouring rain (in still damp from yesterday, waterproofs and shoes) and sheltered in the gun emplacement before heading down to sit under the old fish market roof for my coffee. Straight home through town . . . recovered from the walk in front the TV for a bit. Ate a whole pack of sausage rolls with crisps . . . PCd for HOURS editing down the Countryfile Report footage from the 7th. Eventually called it quits and set the three hour plus upload to Youtube going (not daring to touch the PC or do anything which would affect the router whilst it did so). . TVd, frequently running back upstairs to check on the progress of the upload. Would you believe it - it appeared to have suceeded in uploading, but then ultimately 'stuck' at 95% 'processing', and just sat there like that - for hours!?? SO frustrating. :o( . . Cooked and ate buttered mixed veg with some chopped ham mixed in, followed by biscuits and chocolate . . . eventually gave up on the Youtube processing thing, and turned the PC off in frustrated disgust. To bed around 2am.
26 - Up at 8am. 15C in, 9C out. Broken cloud and blowy to start. . . walked BGdns in full weather gear. The rain (storm 'Jonas') soon arrived, earlier than forecast. Sheltered in a gun emplacement for quite a long while before eventually heading down to the harbour. Sat under the old fish market roof for ages, drinking my coffee and just keeping out of the wind and rain as best I could. Eventually straight back home through town, pretty cold and wet . . . PCd a few pictures and then spent hours trying to edit down the 'Countryfile' footage I shot on the 7th. Eventually just HAD to walk away from it all, leaving it undone . . . TVd . . . ate two ham baps, crisps, banana and chocolate. . immediately fell asleep in the chair for a couple of hours . . . TVD more until to bed around 1:30am. Trouble getting back to sleep.
25 - Woken around 7:45am by next door's piano playing, and up a short time after. 15C in, 11C out. Mostly grey, and breezy. . . walked BGdns. I had intended to return straight home pretty quick to get some 'stuff' done (I'm SO behind with everything!!!), but an incoming trawler had me start filming and I eventually ended up heading down to the harbour. . prowled around for quite a while taking some photos as a couple of smaller boats were worked on in the inner harbour . . eventually headed home through town. . on the way home, D passed by in his camper - and 'insisted on' picking me up! I soon gathered he wanted help towing his car which had broken down near BGdns. Actually, as it turned out, I'd not fully understood what little he wanted me to do. All he wanted to do was move his car a hundred feet or so just up the road, sufficient for him to be able to then use the slope of the road to bump start it (in reverse). I was all ready (nervously - having never done much of any towing before) to have him tow me in the car all the way home, but he didn't want to do that. In very quick time, we moved his car, he got it going again, and he then gave Bella and I a ride back home. He seemed quite happy to return for his camper on foot later!? . . . PCd pictures for hours before uploading sets to Facebook pages etc. . . TVd . . . ate two chicken kievs, mixed veg and chips followed by a banana. . woke up in the chair around 11:30pm! . . TVd some more and ate a large quantity of biscuits and some chocolate . . . to bed around 1:30am.
24 - Up around 8am. 15C in, 11C out. Grey and damp. . . walked BGdns and sat around for ages. The two harbour swans actually went paddling by at some point, heading off along the coast in the direction of Elberry Cove, etc. It's become quite a common sight to see them flying back and forth from and to that direction, but that's the first time I've seen them paddling past like that. . eventually carried-on down to the harbour at low tide. Ended up walking along the paths and marina walkway towards the breakwater, having a look over the walls and harbours edge, at anything which may have been dropped over the edge into the water. With the tide fully out like that, it's quite a good long drop over those edges, and not easy to see anything small which people may have dropped amongst all the other debris which litters the harbour floors. I DID at some point however, spot what looked very much like a sheath knife half submerged in the grey toxic mud - near where people often do crabbing from the harbour wall near the old coastguard station! Once again, it was more about 'the challenge' than anything else - and because I've never before tried to walk on THAT bit of difficult to get to, harbour floor before. I just HAD to give it a go. Retraced my steps, climbed down the steps to the harbour floor, and then managed to pick my way around - with Bella of course. Ended up retrieving not only the rusting sheath, which DID indeed still contain a knife, but also some small scraper tool, an older style of mobile phone, and a couple of plastic crab lines, etc - the latter of which I only picked up and carried back up to the path, because it was just 'litter' and seemed like the appropriate thing to do since I was down there anyway. Just like the other phone I once found, its time submerged in salty sea water had seen the battery 'expand' to almost double its normal width, so that was of course fit for straight in the bin. The plastic crab lines I left on top of the bin, in case anyone wanted to 'salvage' and maybe start using them. The knife and scraper-tool I wrapped in a carrier bag and put in my pocket, for a closer look at later. . carried on out to the breakwater beach, looking over the wall and even walking down to the water for a closer look at this and that here and there. Found nothing else worthy of note. . ended up walking all the way out to the end of the breakwater - and would you believe it, spotted and managed to retrieve from the (dangerously loose!) breakwater rocks, another big nylon fish crate which had ended up washed up there. Left it under one of the seats while we carried on out to the end, and then picked it up on the way back and carried it all the way back around the harbour and back to the fish market. This one was white and foreign and only half the depth of the last one I salvaged, but it was still heavy-going carrying it all that way, making me real hot and tired by the time I was done. I just threw it on the floor inside the fish market gates somewhere, for someone else to maybe eventually shift somewhere more appropriate. . . recovered from my exertions by sitting on the Xmas lights pontoon down in the harbour for my coffee etc . . shopped for supplies (and tobacco!) on the way home through town. . popped up Mums to pick up the two chicken kievs she'd bought for me and forgotten to bring down yesterday . . home well after 3pm again . . . washed-out and cleaned-up as best I could, the sheath knife and scraper tool I'd found in the harbour earlier. The metal studs on the sheath fared the worst with some rust, and the thing was full of the horrible grey toxic sludge which covers the harbour floor. The knife actually cleaned up quite well, and in its day, was probably quite a nice one. Both it and the scraper thing have rubbery bits to their handles making them real nice to hold and work with. I'll be just adding them to all the junk I have as my rusting tools in the garage I guess. . . recovered in front the TV for a bit before ending up on the PC. PCd boat pictures for posting to Facebook for hours. . Mum called to say that Brixham was being featured in a report on BBC1's Countryfile. Sadly, by the time she'd called, the Brixham bit of the program was over and done with . . eventually finished PCing and TVd. Managed to find the Countryfile show on the 'red button' IPlayer and watched the Brixham bit I'd missed earlier. Yep - that was the report I saw them filming on the 7th. Quite an eye opener to see how 'slickly' they'd used the sound and footage I'd seen them recording. And not a trace (as I recall) of them interviewing that woman in the rain like I'd witnessed. Made me all the more sure that I really SHOULD edit down some of the footage I captured, to share with any interested locals. . . TVd . . .ate just bowls of creamy co-co pops, a couple of small fairey cakes and some chocolate. . fell asleep in the chair until gone 2am before then to bed.
23 - Up around 8am. 14C in, 11C out. Broken cloud. . . walked BGdns and eventually on down to sit in the harbour on the xmas pontoon at low tide for my coffee. Whilst I was sat there, the last bit of the tide went out, and a council traffic cone was revealed, sat in the mud, way out near one of the moored boats. Couldn't resist the 'challenge', and eventually hopped down off the pontoon and picked my way right out across the muddy harbour floor, and eventually succeeded in retrieving the traffic cone, without getting my feet 'too' wet or muddy. Carried it all the way back and up out of the harbour, and ultimately just left it sat on the pavement near a refuse bin in front of the Old Market House restaurant near the Golden Hind - in the expectation that sooner or later some council person would take it away. (That of course actually didn't happen, and it ended up sitting around there for days - and may even still be there for all I know - I haven't bothered noticing since.) . . . straight home through town . . Mum called in with food donations for chats etc for a couple of hours . . . ate a couple of mini pork pies with a large bag of crisps, a banana and biscuits . . . napped until 7pm . . TVd with the scanner on, and caught bits of comms from the tail-end of a serious sounding coastguard shout. The gist of what I heard suggested a guy in a small boat, 'in drink', had fallen into the water somewhere out off the Breakwater! He'd luckily had a single personal flare on his person, and had managed to set it off to raise the alarm. Someone ashore had seen it and raised the alarm with the coastguards. A nearby fishing vessel ('Peader Marie' - returning to harbour?) had ALSO seen it, and it was they who ended up locating and pulling the man out of the water! I gather he was 'ok' and was warmed up aboard the fishing boat before being 'landed' when they came into the harbour . . . TVd the evening away . . . ate two quarter pound cheeseburgers and some chocolate . . . to bed around 1am.
22 - Up around 8:45am. 14C in, 11C out. Rain/grey. . . walked BGdns in full weather gear, but almost as soon as I'd left home, the rain stopped and I started overheating badly! Carried on down to the harbour to stand atop the viewing platform, taking a few 'fishing boat' photos of course. Walked down onto the harbour floor and sat on the pontoon used for the christmas lights for my coffee as the tide came in. Ended up spending ages trying to take photos of the two swan who've been hanging around the harbour for ages. . climbed up to the high viewpoint to take a shot or two, and then just wandered around the streets up there a little bit, trying to find any other photo vantage points. Haven't done that for a while. Didn't find ANY worth the effort. SUCH a shame that there are so few publicly available viewpoints of the harbour from that side of town. The simple reality is, that 'people with money' who have been able to afford all the expensive properties on that side of town, are the only ones who can now get to see the views from up there. Every now and then there is a little glimpse through between the houses from street level, or over a wall and across someone's garden, but with every single one of those 'glimpses', a spaghetti of telephone wires ruins the photo op. I dunno - it kinda seems SUCH a shame that the 'poor' general public are denied even a sight of those views - kinda. . eventually headed home after several hours and miles of walking yet again! . . . PCd for hours doing pictures to post to facebook, etc. . . TVd . . . ate four sausages, chips and two fried eggs followed by three jam tarts . . . to bed around 1am.
21 - Woken around 7:45am by neighbour noise, and up soon after. 13C in, 7C out. Grey. . . walked BGdns and then down to the harbour, taking snips of videos and photos of boats etc all along the way. My usual sitting position under the old fish market roof was all cordoned off and full of the wooden masts from one of the old sailing trawlers, so no sitting under the for a while. That's a blow. Ended up sat on a bench on the other side of the harbour for my coffee . . eventually back up to BGdns and ultimately home via the store for supplies, after yet another 'morning' dog walk of around five hours in total!! . . .felt very exhausted and ended up returning to bed for a couple of hours . . . PCd pics for facebook posts for hours . . . ate five going cheap oven heated chicken thighs with tow buttered finger rolls and a little bit of chocolate well after 1am. Immediately fell asleep in the chair with the fire and TV still on and didn't wake to go to bed until gone 4am!
20 - Woke before the alarm, and then up when the alarm went off at 6am. 13C in, 3C out. Comic actor Leslie Nielsen has died . . .Image of Brixham sunrisewalked chilly BGdns just after 7am, before daylight. . sat around in BGdns for a bit, occasionaly snapping a pic or two of the nice sunrise behind a scattering of small clouds. Someone was sleeping rough in my favourite searchlight gun emplacement!! . back home by a little after 9am. . .showered and got clean and put a load of laundry on . . . left Bella home alone (for the first time in absolutely ages) and walked to the dentist for my 10:45am appointment. (A year since my last visit - and increasing amounts of pain again). . the quickest of looks in my mouth, and it was agreed that more of the few remaining bottom teeth now need to come out, and one on the top needs filling or removing. Made appointments for the work to be done next month (52ish - and which will mean a day without my false teeth!!!) and paid the nearly 19 examination fee, and was back home within about a half-hour of having left! . . put laundry out to dry and then PCd this at length . . . napped . . . TVd . . . ate four sausages, two eggs and chips followed later by three jam tarts and bowls of creamy co-co pops . . . promptly fell asleep in the chair again. To bed around 2am.
19 - Up around 8:15am. 13C in, 3C out. Sunny. . .apparantly the police have put a cordon around bits of a seawolf missile down the harbour, and are awaiting the arrival of the EOD from Plymouth (again)! . . . walked BGdns. I WAS right about the gloves I found the other day, and was able to return them to their owner (dogwalker S) this morning. . Eventually on down to the harbour. When I reached BGdns, both lifeboats were out in the bay on exercise, and then when they both returned to the harbour, the ALB unusually moored on the marina events pontoon for an hour or two. Ended up walking out towards the breakwater beach to see what if any photo opportunities presented themselves with it in that position. Nothing much worth the bother, and I was by then feeling tired, headachey, cold and really just not in the mood. Turned out the ALB was moored there because they were going to be heading back out around midday with a load of 'guests' on board, to scatter someones ashes at sea. A prominant member of the local coastguard team apparantly died around christmas, so I imagine it was him. By the time the large party of people arrived to board the lifeboat, I was all the way back under the old fish market roof drinking my coffee. I WOULD have liked to have recorded something of proceedings, but I judged that it probably really wouldn't have been appropriate, so I just stayed sat there as the distant lifeboat headed back out to sea. . drew some cash out and bought some milk before heading back through town. Detoured to the local pet store on the way home, for four more blocks of tripe (gone up to 1.25 a block now!) and a large, 4.99! rawhide chewy thing for Bella. . . PCd a bit of this - but soon caved-in and stopped again! . .this 'posting images to Facebook' thing that has been consuming me of late, really is a weird and confusing business for me. Because I actively do NOT do the 'friends' thing (I still have NONE - despite currently thirteen strangers to me, asking to be one, which I'm ignoring!) , I don't get to see the private 'chatter' that goes on about 'stuff', and can only guage the impact and response my contributions get, from the handful of 'likes' (and any comments) the posts get. Despite the amount of effort and work I put in, on coming up with some of the 'unique' images I post, I rarely get a particularly large number of 'likes' - even when (if I say so myself) 'some' of the images really ARE rather special and different to what anyone else comes up with. Maybe even 'reporter/journalistic' in 'some' cases? (I AM fully aware that my 'ego' is wrapped up in what I'm doing, and how pathetic that is - and I AM on guard against myself, and rarely engage in any dialogue or comments, etc as result.) Anyway - I 'childishly' ended up getting really down about the whole business today. It IS UTTERLY beyond me what it is that people 'like' about what gets posted. I think it was today that someone posted a couple of smartphone type snaps of the inner harbour, a seagull, etc on the 'Devon & Brixham Photo's' page. In my opinion, utterly lack-luster 'stock' images, that weren't even level, or in ANY way of any particular interest, etc, and which must have taken all of a handful of seconds to take, etc. Lo and behold, that person's post recieved 'rave reviews' and hundreds of 'likes' (to my fifty if I'm lucky) and a handful of shares, etc, etc! That was followed up by a couple of different people posting images of 'paintings' they'd made of various scenes around the harbour. Now - I AM notoriously bad at appreciating 'art', but as far as 'I' was concerned, the paintings were unbelieveably childish and poor, and if 'I' had been the artist, I would have been ashamed at the finished result (unless I was not yet a teenager maybe?), and wouldn't have dreamed of posting pictures of them. Yep - you guessed it - huge amounts of praise and likes and shares, and even people wanting to buy them!!!!?????? I just don't understand why people seem to be so - um - 'simple' minded! Oh well - each to their own. :o( I think I may 'need' to stop posting like I have been. Even one of the images of a fisherman I posted to Brixham Fishing, ended up with the comments going off at a tangent and ending up with people slagging somebody off and then appearing to be threatening violence to each other!!!! FFS! :o( . . .TVd . . oh FFS! The bulb in my outside back garden floodlight has blown again. That's seen hardly any use at all since I replaced it (recently)! What a rip-off - again! :o( . . ate a chicken and mushroom pastry slice, crisps, two mince pies, a banana and bowls of co co pops . . . snoozed in the chair a bit and to bed before 1am.
18 - Up just before 8am after almost no sleep at all. 13C in, 4C out. Gale of wind and rain. . .uh-oh! Damn - I think the CMOS battery in my PC has died. :o( . . . walked BGdns in full cold wet-weather gear (my 'new' coat, and some insulated motorcycle leggings I once found back in Bristol!), only to find the torrential rain had mostly passed. The wind had shifted round to a kinda SSW, and there was a large 'hidden' swell on the otherwise moderate waters of the bay. The coast along the Torquay side etc was getting hit by some big waves. Sat around and sheltered in the usual gun emplacement for a while before heading down to the harbour. The fish box I'd salvaged from the breakwater and dumped outside the entrance yesterday, was still there exactly where I'd put it! Bizarre to me how all the people who must have passed it going in there to work since yesterday, couldn't even be bothered to move it inside!? . Nothing much appeared to be going anywhere. All very quiet - presumably because of the weather/wind/swell. . eventually ended up heading out to the seat above the end of the breakwater for a while, photographing the odd fishing boat or two along the way, before returning to under the old fish market roof for my coffee. Briefly shopped in town for nappy bags (dog poop bags to me) before then heading straight home in some more rain . . . recovered from the walk in front of the fire and TV for a bit, before having a PC related delve through a load of the old junk I have laying around. Yayyy - I thought so. Discovered a CMOS battery which I 'think' may be an unused one (albeit pretty long in the tooth by now I'm sure. I can't recall when I may have bought it, or even if it was salvaged from an old PC!!) Managed to open the case on the PC, in-situ and without disconnecting all the cables, and after a quick test with the multimeter, successfully fitted the replacement battery. Reset the bits of the BIOS I needed to, and hey presto - fingers crossed - back to 'usual' I think. Phew! . . . PCd just a bit of this and then spent the usual ages posting pics from this morning to facebook pages, etc. . .TVd/guitarred . . . ate a pepperoni pizza with extra cheese followed by a couple of mince pies . . to bed at 1am.
17 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 9am!! 13C in, 4C out. Grey. . . .walked BGdns. Found a pair of gloves left on a seat - with some dog hairs attached. Hmmmm - I think I may know whose they are. Dogwalker S? Stuffed them in a pocket . . carried on down to the harbour as the forecast light rain arrived, and sheltered under the old market roof to drink my coffee for ages. Had to engage in mindless conversation with someone the WHOLE time I was there! :o(. . . eventually the rain passed and we carried on out to the breakwater. Walked a short distance out along it, to have a look for the seal which have apparantly been regularly basking on a low pontoon tied up alongside the inside of the marina wavescreen. Sure enough, two of them were there again. Image of sleeping seal in Brixham marinaGrabbed a few snips of footage. The larger of the two (on the right in the image I've included here) I presume was a male, and he seemed so content to be laying there, he even had a stream of drool coming from his mouth. The smaller one (female?) was using one of the metal cleats on the pontoon as a 'pillow'! lol It didn't appear to be by chance - every now and then it would move about a little, but then put its head back on it. . wandered just a little further down the breakwater to briefly grab some photos of an inbound trawler. Whilst doing so, I spotted another of the big plastic (yellow - Brixham Trawler Agent - Scallops) fishcrates washed up on the breakwater rocks. Once I'd finished my picture taking, I mustered up the courage and gingerly climbed down the side of the breakwater over the dangerous (potentially loose!) rocks to the waters edge and managed to retrieve the box. Ended up carrying it the mile or so all the way back around the inner harbour to the fishmarket (again!). Uncomfortably awkward thing to carry, because of where the handle is, and 'heavy' after such a distance. All the gates of the fishmarket area were closed and there was no security on duty, so I just left it on the floor immediately outside the pedestrian turnstile entrance for someone else to take in to wherever it belongs. Recovered from my exertions under the old fish market roof for a while before returning to BGdns and eventually home . . . PCd pictures/facebook posts for hours. . .TVd . . .ate two ham and cheese finger rolls, crisps, three mince pies and some chocolate somewhere after 10pm. Try as I did not-to, I couldn't help promptly falling asleep in the chair in front the TV with the fire on again! Woke with difficulty around 2:30am and eventually to bed, only to then have trouble getting to sleep as the wind and rain battered the front of the house, and my crappy double glazing howled. :o(
16 - Up around 8am. 13C in, -1C out. Sunny. . walked BGdns and then on down to the harbour for my coffee. .shopped for a few supplies and then home through town . . .Mum called in with the papers and food donations, for chats for ages . . . PCd and posted a few pics to facebook etc. . ended up monitoring the radios when the lifeboat was called out on a shout to a vessel in lyme bay. Engine failure apparantly - the main engine, AND then the guy couldn't get the spare going!? . "Quicksilver" was the callsign the 'foreign national' on the boat was using, although comms I overheard from the coastguard, suggested the actual vessel's name was 'Spindrift' (which I'd actually seen going out earlier). Hmmm - something a bit weird/wrong about all that?? As darkness fell, the ALB slowly towed whatever vessel it was back into the harbour/marina. It subsequently transpired that whoever the guy on the vessel was, he didn't seem to know what he was doing. The spare engine he couldn't start (which I presume was an outboard), actually turned out to have absolutely nothing wrong with it. He just didn't know it needed a kill-chord attached before it would start. In fact - it turned out he didn't even have a kill-chord on board!! Yeah - something a bit weird about all of that. .( it turns out, that was actually the second shout of the day for the ALB. They'd been called out in the early hours of the morning, on another tow-back type shout - with the vessel handed off to Teignmouth lifeboat I believe!). . . TVd . . . oven heated and ate two going cheap/out of date packs of little sausage rolls with some crisps followed by a banana and chocolate . . almost feel asleep in the chair (or actually probably did for a while) before to bed around 1am.
15 - Woken earlier by neighbour noise then up around 8am. 13C in, 1C out. Clear sky and sunny to start again. . .recieved a thank you message from somone on Facebook, for me having returned the found-photo last night. Weird thing was, it was from someone entirely different AGAIN, to the two who'd messaged me before - and NONE of them was the actual guy in the photo!? . . . walked BGdns. A bitterly cold strong NW wind saw me end up taking shelter from it in the gun emplacement for quite a while. Whilst I was sheltering in there, N, the yacht-club(lifeboat) guy walked by on his way to have another look at where the dog had been found the other day. He was concerned about how the dog had actually ended up where it was, and was going to make sure that no new hole had somehow opened up in the ground above. THAT gave me the opportunity to tag along and get a bit more of the detail about how the dog had been found, and precisely where, etc. Turned out it had been heard barking by someone, and they'd eventually located it deep in a small cave at the end of a fissure in the rocks on Fishcombe Cove. Oh wow - not where I'd thought it may have been at all. It was actually MUCH closer to the beach - the fissure in the rocks actually being just between the two sets of steps which lead down to the beach (or water, depending on how much the tide is in). Amazing. I had no idea there was any sort of cave up in there at all. I real tight squeeze I imagine - but the tide was in at that moment, so there was no having a closer look. Hmmmm - one of these days when the tide is out, I'm gonna have to have a closer look at that! I'm still kicking myself. I can't believe I walked past there for several days and didn't hear anything of it barking etc!?? . . . carried on down to the harbour to sit under the old fish market roof for my coffee. Some sort of renovation work appeared to have been finished to one of the flats in a harbourside property, and a skip was being filled. An entire bathroom suite better than what I have in my house went in it! :o( Hard to just sit there and see all that. Made me feel pretty down about stuff and where my life all went wrong. :o( . . P turned up and chatted for ages. .back to BGdns for a bit and then home . . aimlessly sat around/PCd the day away. Actually watched a bit of the live NASA coverage of the Tim Peake space walk. Amazing/spectacular stuff. . . TVd . . .no appetite again. Forced down a couple of bowls of co-co pops and cream . . immediately feel asleep in the chair until around 2am again!!
14 - Up around 8am. 13C in, 1C out. Clear sky and sunny to start . . . walked BGdns. Border agency cutter 'Valiant' was moored off the breakwater. At some point, their rib headed off into the harbour with four of their crew on board. Eventually carried on down towards the inner harbour. Along the way, a council guy in a truck was emptying out the waste-bins. I took the opportunity of flagging him down as he drove by, and asked if he was also in the business of removing dead wildlife. Without hesitation he jumped out and armed himself with a big plastic refuse sack, and followed me back the short distance along the path to where a dead cormorant has been laying for quite a while now. NOT the sort of thing you want rotting away alongside the coastal path and main walkway into the town! I picked it up by its beak and dropped it into the refuse sack the guy was holding open. Blimey - that's been there for longer than I thought, judging by the swarm of flies that were covering parts of it!! Eeeeewww! Anyway - glad to finally have that sad little bit of unpleasantness gone from my regular walks along there. . filmed the rib from the Valiant in the inner harbour from the viewing platform atop the toilets for a while. It rather looked as though the crew had just come ashore for either some breakfast, or a bit of shopping! lol . . eventually back up to BGdns and home, a little earlier than has become usual in recent times, in order to be home for the facebook person to come pick up the found-picture. . . PCd, waiting-in for the found picture person to come get the picture. God -I HATE having to wait around for someone like that, ESPECIALLY when (as is SO often the case) they don't turn up!! Grrrr. At some point during the afternoon, the person messaged me again via Facebook saying 'someone' had wanted it put through their letterbox and they wouldn't be coming after all. I dunno - seems a bit of a bloody cheek that to me. Here's me done someone a favour by finding and rescuing their photo from destruction in the rain, and they can't even be bothered to come get it, and expect me to deliver it for them!? . PCd more, whilst monitoring radios. Around 15:52 on the marine channel 16, Solent coastguard responded to a mayday call (which I couldn't hear). It soon became apparant from the comms that I COULD hear, that a climber had fallen down a cliff and was injured and unable to move - somewhere! He didn't know where he was, and wasn't able to reach his mobile phone. What intrigued ME about all that, was that he was using a VHF radio on the marine band - which of course requires a licence, and is really for use by vessels, etc. Hmmm? Because of how comms are dealt with by the coastguard, of course he needed a callsign, and because he wasn't a named vessel, they allocated one to him based on his name! So, throughout the ensuing duration of the 'shout', he was to be known as 'Mayday-Michael'. Seemed an extraordinary thing to be listening-in to. The gist of what I WAS able to gleen from the little I could hear, was that he was holidaying at a hotel somewhere in Torquay, he'd gone by taxi to some coastal cafe which he didn't know, and had then gone rock climbing on his own!! He had no idea of his actual location!!!!! Not an easy one for the coastguards to get a handle on!! A full team page was put out for all the Teignmouth and Torbay CRTs to attend various different locations, in an attempt to locate him. He was even questioned as to what type of rocks he was near (red or grey), or if he could see the sea etc, etc! With daylight fast fading, that must have been a VERY stressful and upsetting wait by him! By 16:30 helicopter Rescue 106 had also been tasked. By 16:40, the helicopter was in the bay and confirming they (nor the CRTs up on Daddihole Plain) could hear the casualty's comms, therefor it was thought he was NOT in Torbay at all! Miraculously, by around 16:47 he WAS located - on cliffs near the Cary Arms, over the Babbacombe side of the bay (sadly all out of MY reception range, because of the lay of the land)! I continued to monitor the little I could, and watched the helicopter's movements on the AIS website. With daylight now long gone, by 17:33 the casualty had been lifted into the helicopter and was en route straight to Derriford hospital. He'd only been administered entinox for whatever injuries he had, and was reported to have a core temperature of 35.8 degrees. I had to look that up, but it would understandably appear to be edging down towards the initial stages of hypothermia!! At 17:41 Solent coastguard cancelled the mayday with a 'Silence Finnit' broadcast. Phew! Weird one that. (Subsequent local newspaper report) . . . walked and put the found-picture through a letterbox. Carried on down to the harbour, up to BGdns and then to the local store for supplies on the way home . . . TVd . . . ate a pepperoni pizza followed by chocolate and then later, three mince pies, biscuits and bowls of creamy co-co pops . .promptly fell asleep in the chair and didn't wake and go to bed until gone 2am again!?
13 - Up around 8:15am. 13C in, 0C out. Some blue sky . . . walked BGdns and sat around for quite a while before ending up under the old fish market roof for my coffee. Bought a 5kg bag of potatoes to struggle home with in the rain. Found a photo on the ground just before it started raining. Ended up taking it with me to see if I could reunite it with its owner by posting it on the local Spotted Brixham type facebook page, etc. . . nervously dared to put my 'new' coat in the wash, in the hope that at least some of the dirt would wash out (mostly from the high viz fluorescent yellow areas, where it shows quite badly). It ended up coming out of the wash without any harm done, although clearly much of the 'dirt' marks I'd been trying to remove are actually somehow permanent. Not to worry - it's still the best coat of its type that I've ever owned. . . PCd . . . over the last handful of days, I've bumped into a poor dog walker in BGdns on more than one occasion. Somewhere over the weekend she was walking her two (rescue)dogs down around FCove etc, and one of the dogs which she'd only had for a couple of months, had run off after another dog - and subsequently disappeared! The poor woman was obviously understandably distraught, and day after day had been walking around all over the place (whatever the weather!) looking for it. I felt SO sorry for her. If Bella ever just 'disappeared' like that, I'd be in a HELL of a sate. I really don't think I'd be able to stand the 'anguish'! I'll give that women her due, she was tireless in her efforts to find it. Within a day or so of it being lost, the ENTIRE area was COVERED in 'lost dog' posters! On every railing, fence, seat - EVERWHERE I went! The last time I saw her, she was even 'laying a scent trail' (?) like someone had told her to, and she'd put some of the dogs' blankets and a water bowl next to one of the memorial seats overlooking FCove! Heartbreaking - absolutely heartbreaking! :o( By this point, I was firmly of the opinion that the dog had likely left the immediate area and had headed inland, and she'd have been better off just going home and hoping for the best (but quite likely never seeing the dog again, which is so often tragically the case from what I've seen of similar circumstances locally!) There WERE some 'lost-dog' posts she'd put on a couple of the local Facebook pages too, although NOT on the 'Torbay Dog Lovers' page which I follow, so on her behalf, I DID actually 'share' one of the posts to that page aswell, just to ensure she got absolute maximum coverage and shares, etc. . Well - whilst PCing this afternoon, I happened to go on Facebook within minutes of a new post going up (complete with a few photos) on the 'Brixham Yacht Club' page. Incredibly, the lost dog had been found, and rescued (with the help of N, the yacht-club/lifeboat guy I've spoken with on a few occasions) from 'a cave' on FCove, and was back with its owners safe and well!!! Oh my god - what wonderful, WONDERFUL (unexpected) news! For once, what a wonderful ending to such a story. I was SO delighted, I immediately shared the post to the Torbay Dog Lovers page. Those two pages quite literally 'lit up' over the next couple of hours, with people 'liking' the posts and commenting words of relief and delight. MUCH joy. :o) . . . someone commented on Facebook about the photo I'd found, and actually simply put someone elses name as their comment. They were spot on. The person who's name they'd suggested, actually had that very same image as their profile picture, so little doubt there. The person who made that comment, then actually messaged me, and after a couple of messages to and fro, it was agreed they would call round early tomorrow afternoon to pick up the picture (and they would return it to the person who'd lost it, who they knew socialy). I did also eventually get messaged by someone else (again NOT the owner of the picture!?), asking me to pop it through the letterbox of a house down on the way to town - which would have been the easiest way for me to quickly get rid of it, but since I'd already agreed to have the other person call round for it, I didn't reply to that message. . . TVd . . ate four sausages with a large mound of buttered mixed veg followed by chocolate . . . promptly fell asleep in the chair again. Eventually woke and to bed after 2:30am.
12 - Up around 8am. 14C in, 3C out. Uhoh - Bella wasn't in the bedroom! That usually means she's pooped all around the kitchen. :o( Nervously went downstairs fearing the worst but thankfully no problems. I think she just needed to drink lots. Yesterday was very much out of the evening routine we've become used to. Put the half bowlfull of her refused food out for the crows and gulls. Shower clouds and some blue sky again. . . walked chilly/showery BGdns (in my 'new' coat. :o) ). Uh oh - Bella is acting very unwell again, 'hanging behind' as we walk, which is of course HIGHLY unusual for HER!! :o( Sheltered from the cold wind and frequent passing showers in the lower searchlight gun emplacement for quite a while (with Bella suprisingly wanting to play ball a BIT) before sitting in some sunny spells on a higher seat for my coffee. More groups of young school kids being given the tour of the emplacements by the museum volunteers. . . Eventually back via the store and pet store for a few supplies, with Bella very worryingly 'dragging along' all the way again!!!!! . .TVd recovering from the walk for a while before PCing just a bit of this. It's no good - to adequately bring this up to date is gonna take forever, and I REALLY need to eat lots and nap today - so I think I'm gonna just have to leave it as it is for a while AGAIN - but AM gonna upload it cause I haven't for ages, and feel 'guilty' about that! . . . ate two chicken and mushroom kievs and chips followed by a little chocolate . . . napped until 7pm . . .TVd the night away. . ate three pastry mince pies, bowls of rice krispies and After-Eight mints . . fell asleep in the chair yet again!?! To bed after 2am.
11 - Up around 8:20am. 14C in, 3C out. Shower clouds but plenty of blue sky . . . wow I'm feeling very down all of a sudden! . . news that David Bowie has died. . . walked BGdns and sat around in the cold sun for quite a while. The battery museum guys were giving groups of high-vis jacketed school kids tours of the gun emplacements etc. Pointed the camcorder at a couple of boats for a bit, but my heart just wasn't in it at all. VERY down mood. . . did laundry and PCd. Trouble with the PC now!! Just what I f***ing need. I have a strong suspicion it is just getting overwhelmed by the MASS of data filling it, with very little space left on the primary hard drive, etc. . . Monitored developments on the radios as a coastguard shout started up around 13:30hrs. It appears there are fears from abandoned camera equipment at the top of the cliff, that a photographer may have gone over the cliff at Babbacombe!! All local and Teignmouth CRTs and the Teignmouth lifeboat were mobilised, and the police helicopter was also apparantly on scene. . by 13:55hrs, it was confirmed the camera equipment owner had returned for the equipment which he'd left behind (!?) , and it was all yet another false-alarm with good-intent. . .continued tending laundry and PCing this, desperately trying to bring it more up to date, for hours!! . . . walked again (wearing just a light shower jacket over my usual, despite the cold) around 7pm, and headed across town to find the coastguard place and hopefully pick up the coat. Walked up through the small industrial estate where they apparantly have their new lockup, but had absolutely no idea where it was. A couple of people were just coming out of one of the units, so I started over to ask if they knew where it was. Lo and behold, the guy I approached was carrying the jacket and handed it straight over to me! Apparantly he'd passed me somewhere as I was walking up there and knew I was coming for it. How on earth he knew who I was I can't imagine! 'Small-town' stuff I guess? (Funny how 'I' know no-one! lol . put the coat straight on and then headed off down towards the harbour, intending to use the opportunity of my first night-time walk in ages, to have a play with the new camcorder. Climbed up all the steps to the high vantage point overlooking the fish market and much of Torbay for a few shots, before then back down around the harbour and up to the viewing platform above the toilets overlooking the working quay. Played with the camcorder lots, as a couple of the fishing boats came in to unload their catch. . coffee under the old fish market roof. Like a ghost town - VERY quiet around the place! Eventually home . . . Bella suddenly refused most off her food this evening! :o( . . PCd all the night pics. Rather (predictably) disappointing low-light results, albeit maybe a bit better than my old camcorder I think. Got a few nice shots 'I' think, nonetheless. I'm gonna have to experiment with all that some more, with the camcorder on some of the other settings etc, etc . . ate a large sausage roll, crisps, a little cheese, and some pickled onions followed by Mum donated After-Eight mints. That's not enough for a day - again!! . . . to bed around 2:30am.
10 - Up around 8:20am. 14C in, 4C out. Yet more big shower clouds. :o(. . . walked BGdns. Quite a bit of brightness for a while, with the shower clouds making rainbows. Eventually on down to the harbour for my usual aimless look around. Another full arch rainbow appeared as I was having a look at the working harbour, and I ended up poking the camcorder at it for a short while. The sky with huge drifting shower clouds gave every indication that more rainbows were quite likely, so I ended up hurridly walking around the harbour and up all the steps to 'the' high vantage point. Got up there just in time to film another full arch rainbow. Hung around up there for a bit and caught a couple more worth briefly filming. Threatening skies and a bit of light rain eventually had me call it quits, descend back down all the steps and return to the shelter of the old fish market roof, for my coffee and to sit around for quite a while before eventually straight home through town. Ended up getting caught in a heavy shower on the way. :o( . . . PCd a bit of the rainbows video, shared it on Facebook and uploaded it to Youtube. . cut my hair, beard, showered, etc . . . PCd some more . . .TVd feeling increasingly down . . .no appetite yet again, but HAD to eat something. Forced myself to cook and eat a bowl of boiled mixed veg doused in butter and grated cheese, followed by biscuits and some after-eight mint chocolates . . . fell asleep in the chair again I think, and then to bed whenever.
9 - Woke earlier then up at 8am. 15C in, 8C out. Showery . .my 'John Thomas' pseudonym has been on Facebook for six years today apparantly, so Facebook has decided to inform me. . . Image of Bella aboard the Brixham Christmas-lights pontoonwalked BGdns and then ultimately down to the inner harbour to sit under the old fish market roof sheltering from bands of rain and to drink my coffee. Some workmen were dismantling the 'three ships' Christmas lights pontoon display, and I couldn't resist getting some footage of it, to share some stills on Facebook later. At some point, trying to get a better camera view on what they were doing, we walked out to the end of the working 'middle' quay. Whilst stood out there, 'exposed', all of a sudden there was a blinding flash followed a little while later by a deafening clap of thunder! (Sadly I wasn't actually filming when the lightning flashed). Wow - did being on the end of that exposed quay suddenly feel like a dodgey place to be!!! . . back and forth, sheltering from the showers under the old fish market roof for quite a long while. At some point, with the three ships lights display now removed from the pontoon, the workmen just sat in their van for quite a while, perhaps having a bit of a break. I eventually couldn't resist the opportunity, and ended up walking out on the harbour floor. I (eventually!) successfully managed to get Bella to jump up on the pontoon, and grabbed a few quick photos of her sat up there - complete with the workmens van etc in the background. lolol

back to BGdns.

Image of Battery Gardens graffittiDiscovered that some brain-dead idiot had covered the inside walls of the lower floor of the main control bunker with some new graffitti! Jeeze I can't tell you how angry that makes me. :o(

Ended up trapped, sheltering from heavy rain, and filmed a couple of boats and birds on the feeder, etc. .

back in what was mostly a dry break in the rain . . . PCd for hours knocking up still images and posting them to Facebook pages. . . TVd . . little appetite again and ate just a tin of sausages in baked beans with two miniature pork pies chopped up and added to it, a bag of crisps, and a couple of biscuits . . . to bed around 2:30am.
8 - Up around 7:30am. 14C in, 5C out. Not raining again yet, but soon forecast . . .walked BGdns and then on down to the inner harbour. As usual, I popped into the public toilets on the quay, and passed a guy outside on a mobility scooter as I do so. When I came back out a short time later, he was already gone into the distance, but laying on the floor where he'd been parked, was a cellophane packet of two brand new bath-sponges which he'd obviously dropped! Swiftly grabbed them and hurried after him shouting out.

With my bad knees, I couldn't catch him! It was only thanks to someone else calling after him that he finally stopped and I was able to reuunite him with his sponges!

to sit under the old fish market roof for ages as heavy showers passed through.

Shopped for a few supplies in town before heading straight home up the main road. Timed that wrong and ended up walking in heavy rain all the way back! . . . PCd. I'd fully intended to get on top of some outstanding stuff on the PC today but that didn't happen - again!

Messaged the guy about me NOT doing a blog. Hi *. I had a look at 'Through The Gaps', and have thought about it LONG and hard, but regretfully I think my answer must be, no-can-do. I believe, to do it justice, such a project would at the very least, demand a significant and consistent long-term commitment, and my circumstances are currently such that I can't guarantee I could give that. My recent excessive proliferation of (hugely time-consuming!) Brixham-Fishing, etc Facebook posts, ARE likely destined to abruptly cease without warning at some point in the forseeable future as those circumstances change, and of course that is not something which could be allowed to happen to the sort of blog I imagine you envisage. I really am VERY sorry. Thank you so much for considering me worth asking. Sincere regards.

Messaged the guy who'd asked for pics of his boat, explaining I didn't store stuff in boat name order like that, etc, etc.

Recieved another message asking if I'd seen the damage to a boat in the harbour! "Hi john , my // trawler is tied up in the inner harbour. It's been there a few weeks . I have just came back from holiday. There is a small dent in the stern . Did you see another boat possibly resting on mine ? Or have a photo . I'm surprised it was not noticed by anyone. The other vessel would have been sat on mine whilst the tide was out. I would like the matter keep confidential . I don't want the matter posted over FB."

recieved a mail from Coz1 informing me I had been hacked and he'd received spam type mail from 'me'!!!!! . . .ran anti virus/malware scans but I'm all clear locally at least!

TVd . . . ate two whole packs of going cheap chicken thighs with some coleslaw followed by four mince pies and a little chocolate . . .fell asleep in the chair and then to bed just after midnight.
7 - Up around 8am. 14C in, 6C out. Blue sky and shower clouds to start, but blowing a gale still. . . walked BGdns. Wow - really cold in that strong West wind. Sheltered in a gun emplacement from the wind and a passing shower or two before eventually on down to the harbour.

Film crew filming. Image of a film crew and BBC presenter Tom Heap in Brixham Stalked them and filmed them with the camcorder. I didn't recognise the 'presenter' (with the white hat on) myself, but 'something' made me suspect for some reason, he was likely a presenter on the BBC program 'Countryfile'. After a Facebook post of the image included here asking who it was, and after further checks online, I eventually successfully identified the man. "Thomas John Gillespie "Tom" Heap (born 6 January 1966) is the Rural Affairs Correspondent of BBC News, and a United Kingdom television and radio reporter and presenter best known for his contributions to the BBC One programme Countryfile, the same channel's Panorama programme, and the BBC Radio 4 programme Costing the Earth."

When the film-crew ended up atop the viewing platform over the toilets to do another piece to camera with the working fish dock in the background, I ended up way across the other side of the harbour near 'the' seating area which overlooks the inner harbour (near the Ernie-Lister Bar) , zoomed-in to get some neat shots. Oh for goodness sake - those seats are one of THE prime spots for taking iconic photos of the inner harbour, or just sitting enjoying the view, and the whole area around them was covered in bottles, takeaway wrappers and all sorts of disgusting filth! Ended up filling a discarded carrier bag with as much as I could reach, and eventually walked it all to a bin. People SUCK!

. . . PCd the trawling Torbay footage from yesterday, and spent many hours trying to edit it all down, but not miss anything too relevant! The footage I have really does pretty much give a good insight into much of the process of what those incredible guys do! Had a break from it all for a while and ended up editing-out and then sharing on Facebook a silly little snip of video from yesterday which really made me laugh. Hey - each to their own. lol . . . Received another (hidden-away!) Facebook message, which I managed to spot in pretty quick time, this time. "Hey John, im -/(a dog walker I've spoken with)/-, i dont suppose you have pics of ****? If you have could you send them via messenger? Im away on that boat tomorrow so wont get them till im back but im after some nice ones and you seemed like the person to ask." Bloody hell - this is all starting to feel as though it's all getting a bit out of hand and more than I can handle!!! I'm starting to feel - um - 'overwhelmed'! Actually, in all seriousness, I'm really starting to feel as though I may be heading for 'breakdown' number 2!!!! . . . carried on editing at length until finally calling it quits on the Girl Rona Fishing video. The upload to Youtube took over THREE hours and didn't finish until well after 1am! . . TVd while the file uploaded. Ate the small bowl of yesterday's left over beef and mixed veg followed by a couple of mince pies and chocolate biscuits . . . to bed around 2am.
6 - Up around 8am. 14C in, 5C out. Dry with some bright intervals . . walked BGdns and ended up just sitting around filming a fishing boat trawling for fish in Torbay for AGES. Eventually down to the very quiet harbour for my coffee. Climbed the flights of steps to the high vantage point overlooking the harbour to take a couple of pictures of the very nearly empty fish dock. All the boats disappeared back to work out to sea. SUCH a contrast to how packed it's been in there over Christmas with ALL the boats in.

Image of the face of Brixham's harbourside Prince William of Orange statue.A little while ago, someone had posted one of those 'iconic' photos of the harbourside Prince William of Orange statue with a seagull perched on its head. Nothing new about that, but what interested ME about the image, was that the long since broken/missing nose of the statue appeared to have been replaced. When walking past today, I briefly detoured to the pavement opposite, and had a closer look at the face of the statue with the zoomed-in camcorder. Jeeze WHAT a mess that statue is in!!! Outrageous!.

back to BGdns. Saw two swan flying into the harbour. Eventually home via the store and the pet store for supplies . . . bit the bullet and changed the coils in my e-cig(s) for new ones. Wow - that's what they SHOULD be like again. I need to be less of a penny pincher and renew them more frequently. I have a horrible habit of going with them for as long as is absolutely possible, and I eventually end up with hardly any vapour coming out of them at all, and the battery running down much quicker! . . . PCd for hours posting stuff to facebook pages . . . TVd . . cooked and ate a tiny bit of a bowlfull of mixed veg, chopped beef slices and gravy, but actually wasn't hungry and actually felt a bit sick and soon left the rest. .ate bowls of co-co pops and a little chocolate . . .to bed around 1am.
5 - Woke earlier then up around 8:30am. <14C in, 5C out. Big black shower clouds again, but bits of blue sky. . . woke at the PC as usual. I'm really not particularly familiar with how Facebook works, and somehow I suddenly discovered today that I've had several messages from different people over the last couple of months, which I've been completely unaware of!!! THAT is because I don't do 'friends' with ANYONE, and messages from people who aren't friends get stashed away in some obscure hiding place! Blimey - that's a bit embarssing.

even one from back around 30th November, sent from onboard, by the skipper of one of the boats!!!!????! "Hi john. **** here owner of *****, if you want to get some good photos we are stuck fast and will be pulling free (hopefully) shortly, we will heave right over"

Found one about doing a blog!!!! "Hi John sorry for contacting you on here . My name is * * I am ** of Brixham Trawler Agents. I often look at the pictures and videos you post some of which are good for the promotion of the fishing industry . There is a chap who does the same as yourself in Newlyn called Lawrance Hartwell on a blog called Through the Gaps . He has a huge following . My question is to you would you be interested in setting up a blog and posting pics and videos on there ? I can grant permission on to the quayside and fish auction . And know everyone around quayside . Maybe we could meet up in the new year an have a chat . Regards ** "

walked BGdns - much distracted/disturbed in my thoughts! Plenty of trawlers all heading out, so ended up filming things for quite a while. Eventually down to the harbour for my coffee and then back to BGdns for more playing with the camcorder while sheltering from showers. Home via the store and then Mums just to pick up a few food donations. . . PCd for hours posting trawler images to Facebook's 'Brixham Fishing', etc. . Yayy - received another facebook reply from the coastguards about the coat. "Hi, yes you're welcome to the coat. It's at our station on the Rae Barn industrial park. If you can call down on a Monday between 1930 and 2130 you can pick it up." EXCELLENT. Next Monday I'll be going for an evening walk then. :o). PCd some more and eventually ended up uploading the 'Brixham Trawlermen Greasing The End Blocks video' to Youtube - or 'greasing the end bollocks' as I (and I think the fishermen) prefer to call it. lol . . . TVd . . . ate two beef slice finger rolls with a little coleslaw followed later by bowls of creamy co-co pops . . . to bed around 1am.
4 - Woken earlier by net door's piano then up around 8:30am. 14C in, 6C out. A thick grey sky of heavy shower clouds . . blimey - Sylvia T appears to have been wrestling with her nets out in the bay all night, and around 9:30am was finally just coming back into the harbour! . . . walked BGdns, the harbour, Bgdns and then to the pet store for a big sack of Wagg. Struggled home with it over my shoulder. . . vacuumed the house, cleaned around the place just a little. . ate a bowl of yesterdays leftover mixed veg and corned beef . . aimlessly PCd the day away, feeling increasingly down as the day wore on. Ooooer - the local coastguards replied to my message about the coat. "I'm not sure what's happened to the jacket but will ask on Monday when we meet for training.". Fingers crossed on that. It wasn't particularly clean, and no doubt suffered from its soaking and getting abandoned on the rocks, but from what I remember, it WAS a very useable coat, it was quite a bit of hassle (to say the least) salvaging it, and I just think 'I' should have it if it's rightful owner hasn't come forward. . . TVd . . .ate bowls of co co pops, biscuits, a banana and chocolate . . . to bed around 1am.
3 - Woken before 8am by the sound of today's gale battering the house. 15C in, 8C out. Wind and torrential rain. . .annadin tablet for breakfast. . walked BGdns late in full weather gear as the rain cleared to occasional showers, and even a decent period of sunny spells. Amazing how much difference it makes for me just walking now, having had a painkiller beforehand! Carried on out to the breakwater beach and sat around there for a while before carrying on along to near the Shoalstone beach/swimming pool. Several small fishing boats were scalloping 'nearby' and I couldn't resist pointing the camcorder at them for quite a while. Eventually all the way back to the harbour to sit under the old fish market roof for my by now barely warm coffee. Back up to BGdns to shelter from a heavy downpour before finally heading home. . . napped . . . PCd the whole evening away, eventually posting pictures of fishing boats to Facebook's Brixham Fishing page. Ended up also putting a bit of video of a beam trawler onto Youtube. A bit of a 'nothing' video, but it just looked pretty to me, with much of the views across the bay in the background. By the time I finally got round to doing that, it was well past midnight. Weird thing was, as I was doing that, comms on the radio and the AIS website suggested, that very same boat had apparantly had a winch problem and was limping straight back to Torbay with all it's gear still in the water I think! BM112 Sylvia T Crossing Torbay . . .cooked and ate mixed veg with chopped onion and corned beef followed by a banana around 1am or later! . . to bed gone 2am.
2 - Up around 8am. 14C in, 9C out. Some blue between shower clouds . . . walked BGdns, the harbour, out to the breakwater beach, back to the harbour for my coffee, back up to BGdns, and eventually home via the store for a few supplies after 2pm. . tired and headachey and feeling down and not good. Forced down four small sausage rolls with crisps and then retreated to bed until not long before 7pm . . . did the mountain of dish washing chores for hours . . TVd . . .ate a going-cheap/off pepperoni pizza followed by biscuits and chocolate . . . to bed around 2am.
1 - Woken just before 9am by wind/neighbour noise. 15C in, 8C out. Grey, windy and some rain. More of a South Easterly today . . . walked BGdns in full weather gear as the wind and rain gradually worsened. The tug and barge are still in the bay, together now with a handful of sheltering cargo ships. Found a dog tag in the name of Jemma. Sheltered in a gun emplacement for quite a while before ultimately walking down the harbour to sit under the shelter of the old fish market roof for my coffee. Cold, and unpleasantly blowy, even under there. . eventually returned to BGdns and then home . . tried calling the number on the dog tag I'd found, but it went straight to voicemail, and despite leaving a message about it, no-one called me back - so that looks to me as though the phone number on it is out of date, which means it's rather pointless the dog wearing it! . . . aimlessly TVd/PCd the day away as the gale and torrential rain just got worse and worse! Battering the house, and howling through/around the windows! :o( . edited and posted another short snip of some of yesterday's fishing boat footage to Facebook, and even got round to facebook-messaging the local Coastguards, asking if it would be possible to have the nice buoyancy-aid coat back, which I salvaged from the rocks around 21st November - assuming the rightful owner never caught up with wherever it ended up! "Re **Callout**#55 1453hrs 20/11. I was the 'first informant' who 'salvaged' the buoyancy jacket from the rocks, and left it in your custody. IF it hasn't been claimed by its rightful owner ('Paul'), can I please claim it back? Times are hard and I sure could use it. Sincere regards.". Fingers crossed on that one (although I strongly doubt I'll get it). Given the current appalling weather, with me and Bella both getting frozen and soaked EVERY day, day after day, I sure could use it! . .laboriously measured liquids out with a syringe and eventually mixed up 100ml supplies of my own toffee flavour 18mg nicotine e-liquid to keep me going for quite a while . . . jeezuz - is there no end to this weather!!! Horrendous! . . .hunkered down and TVd the night away in front the fire as the wind and rain battered the house. . .cooked and ate a large pan full of buttery mixed veg with chopped raw onion and corned beef mixed into it, followed by large numbers of biscuits again . . . to bed around 1am.
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