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May
31
- Woken by Sally around 7:30am!! . .PCd and uploaded several (clog dance) video chunks before walking after 9am. Actually - I just couldn't resist watching the 'Waltz Request' video one more time before I set off. (YouTube link). That is just a beautiful moment in time, 'captured'. It's for little bits like that I've put in all this effort. Lovely. :o) . .

busy running back and forth to town - filming everything I could get!

so, SO exhausted! Forced myself to not even fire up the PC to have a look to see what I'd succeeded in capturing. It'll just HAVE to wait until tomorrow!
30 - Up around 8am!! . .walked . .it's no good. I'm just TOO exhausted to go out looking for film opportunities today. It's going to HAVE to be a 'day off'! At least according to the brochure, there isn't quite so much going on today - and I certainly have no desire to go down and witness lots of children torturing poor crabs in the Crab Catching Competition! If I HAD made a video of that, they sure wouldn't like whatever sombre/sad choice of music/slant etc I would have given it! :o(. . PCd all day. Oh NO!!!!!!! Would you believe it! A whole bunch of the footage of Paddy's Whiskers I recorded, has a strand from my worn out fingerless gloves (it WAS cold) waving in front of the lens and is ruined! I could KICK myself!!! :o( Put my gloves straight in the bin in disgust, and dragged out the new and unused pair from the cupboard. .cooked and ate ham ring and chips around 4pm . .heavy shower! . .PCd until, despite feeling utterly utterly exhausted, headed off with Sally via BGdns to town under a warm clearing sky. Turned out that despite the weather having cleared, the evening band performance had been rained off. Ended up quite litterly collapsed on a seat by the harbourside unable to move for quite a while before eventually struggling back home for yet more PCing. .touched base with BB . . PCd until around 1am before sitting briefly in front of the TV with a coffee and four Mum donated Mr Kipling tarts.
29 - Up around 9:30am!! . .PCd . . walked and carried on down town intending to buy some camcorder tapes. I've pretty much run out of available hard drive space again, and figure leaving stuff hanging around on tapes (rather than miss it) is an easy quick way out of the situation. .walking through the harbour, signs were up confirming that Paddy's Whiskers would be playing at 1pm.

filming , filming, down town, back, PCd and franticlly charged batteries at least a little in the available time, back down to record the kids college band 'MIU'

back to pick up Sally and head straight back out to walk her and then continue on back down to the harbour and out to the Breakwater Beach to have a look at the Classic Vehicle Rally . .

back via the harbour to see a bit of the Brixham Town Band. They play there pretty much every week in the summer, so I figured I'd have a break from trying to film everything and just sit and listen and relax for a bit. At some point they played 'Memories'. DAMN!!! SO Should have got that on film!! As it was, for some inexplicable reason, it saw me get all emotional and I embarassingly (unseen by anyone I trust!) actually shed a couple of tears!!!!!!!!!!? Ended up unable to resist (despite the awkward layout of things) and filmed just a little of the rest of the performance. .

eventually walked home to PC until early before bed!
28 - Up around 8:45am or later . .PCd, actually taking some time to just watch some of the videos I've been making for a change. I really have done a bunch now haven't I!! No one can ever imagine the amount of time and effort that's gone into all these! Incredible! . . walked late in the heavy rain . . PCd all day again as the torrential rain poured . .Mum called and then popped in at some point around 1pm to watch the latest batch of finished videos, rather than the raw source footage she'd watched the other day . . grabbed some ham and lettuce sandwiches with crisps at the PC desk somewhere along the way. . . left Sally at home around 4:30pm and headed off down town in the lessening drizzle to see the advertised band. Turned out it'd been postponed to some other time (tomorrow I think) because of the rain. Somehow ended up wasting an hour or so filming the port regeneration work (as best I could now that fences and covered protective walkways have gone up at every decent vantage point! :o( ) . . returned home for a quick coffee an then set off to walk Sally and return to the harbour to see what had been advertised, which sounded weird in the write up on the leaflet. .sat waiting for it to start, Mum turned up! Cool. She held on to Sally while I filmed pretty mcuh the ENTIRE evenings 'show'. I'm convinced of it now. I really have entered the twilight zone!!!!!!

treated to a quiet fish and chips takeaway by Mum, eaten while sitting on one of 'the Marks seats' on the harbourside, after everyone seemed to have suddenly gone home. . walked Mum home before getting straight back to transfer the footage to the PC and knock off a couple of 'easy chunk' videos (which in fact is what ALL of this evenings filming is gonna produce. Several chunks of the different dances - which may actually be a bit 'overkill'! You kinda had to be there I guess.) Dunno what it is about those Border Morris guys. They somehow make me think back to being on the bike runs. Overweight 'threatening' guys in black and combat trousers perhaps? lol Morris dancers come in for a lot of ridicule. These guys have the right idea. Carry large lengths of timber and look mean! lololol. . . PCd until after 2am.
27 - PCd until around 8am before walking. Felt 'woozy' and not well . . PCd a bit more before figuring I really needed to try to sleep again. Half dozed for an hour at most and tossed and turned before getting back up at 1pm to eat corned beef, mayo and lettuce sandwiches (6 pieces of bread!) and crisps followed by a little chocolate . . PCd . . napped for just over an hour and woke before the alarm . . walked and carried on down town for around half an hour of filming of the 'High Society' band that was performing . .PCd the night away again, touching base briefly with BB along the way . . grabbed a tin of sausages in baked beans (with a spoon, cold from the tin) around 1:40am while the 'Quando' file uploaded to YouTube. Looks simple but I'm rather happy with that one. Had to mess around a lot (keeping the sound track continuous) to be able to do the edits (which I really felt should be done, and with hindsight should have probably had more), but it was a very good test of manipulating the audio whilst retaining the lip sync. Worked out ok - and proves the others I have/want to edit are do-able, albeit VERY time consuming. :o) The amount of work I put into these things to get the edits in the right place and retain lip sync etc, is massive - which makes it all the more aggravating when YouTube's processing always somehow knocks it off by at least a few tenths of a second, or more over the course of a long piece so it seems. :o(. . knocked off another 'easy' one (straight piece of film as captured) before eventually to bed after 3am!!
26 - Up around 8:30am woken by the sound of the storm which had pulled open the unfastened window in the PC room and was rattling the blind!! . . PCd a bit . . walked in the wind and rain. Plenty waves breaking over the breakwater - but I have enough video on my plate already, without capturing any more to have to deal with!!!! This has turned into a FULL time job!!!!!!!!!! I'm getting a 'bit' (!!!!!) burned out again! :o( . . PCd all day. Good grief - I had no idea it was Monday! . .grabbed a quick trio of Mum donated ham rolls with crisps then PCd some more . . napped late until the alarm at 7:30pm. . great difficulty persuading Sally she had to just make do with using the garden again tonight. Lots of standing around out there in the wind and rain on different occasions before she FINALLY did!! . . PCd on, non stop. . touched base with BB briefly during a video compile! . .PCd yet more. . Pointless putting individual links here at the moment. Just see My YouTube Channel for the latest several (or actually, the link at the top of this page is probably better)!!. . PCd until the early hours before bed . . my mind is all over the place!!????. . tossed and turned for at least two hours with an aching back, maybe almost half sleeping for ten minutes or so, before giving up and getting back up after 4:30am - and yes - got straight back on the PC!!!!!!
25 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 7:30am . . PCd until I heard the two explosions in the distance. That means the lifeboat has been called out!! OOooh. A pretty strong easterly wind and some roughish sea. Ooooh. I just couldn't resist. Grabbed the cameras, rushed Sally into the car and raced to the Shoalstone car park like an absolute idiot. Would you believe it. By the time I got there the lifeboat was already gone! Will I EVER get any film of it in the rough? Doesn't seem like it. :o( . .PCd transferring the taped video to the PC all day. . Oh no!!! AWWWWwwwww NOOOOooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'd messed up somewhere in the tape transfers. The audio level was set too high and all the audio was 'over deviating' and trashed. Damn, damn, DAMN!! A whole sequence of video that would have made at least a handful of 'clips' was lost. I'd already taped over the original. :o(

rushed down some beef rolls with crisps . .

Cut down the 'Parade' footage and threw away more than I cared to, and called it quits on that. Had to split it in two for YouTube's 10 minute max (although I guess if you weren't likely to be IN it, it's probably over long and boring maybe?) . Parade1(YouTube link) Parade2(YouTube link). .was just uploading to YouTube when Mum called in. She'd suprisingly gone down town on her own to see the orpheus choir etc. I just couldn't face going down there after the day I'd had, but I regretted it, because I really wanted to get some footage of that choir after having used a fair bit of their music on various videos. As it turned out, according to Mum it was all a rather heavily religious affair with everyone holding hymn sheets and the like, and was much less tolerable as a result. . .

ended up having to sit around for hours while Mum pretty much watched everything I'd recorded - occasionally clapping, singing along and tapping her feet!!! lololol Poor neighbours! Even turned out a dot in the distance on one of the parade vids is her! lolol . .walked Mum home with Sally after 11pm. . . PCd a bit of this . . couldn't resist and set about cutting out and uploading the first Swashbuckle chunk. There may well be
several more! :o)
(YouTube link) VERY cool. . ate the last of the muesli and then some cornflakes at getting on for 2am. s
24 - Up around 7:45am headachey! . . walked . . Left Sally at home and headed into town for the opening day of the week long Heritage Festival, loaded up with the tripod, cameras, all my camcorder/camera batteries, spare tape, etc, etc, etc. . .
filmed all over the place like a lunatic. A crash course in what'll work and what wont. Much turned out to be unsuccessful and will sadly be discarded.
ran out of battery power/tape and raced home around 3pm to charge one up a bit and to transfer the taped video onto the PC so I could immediately tape over the footage with 'whatever' new (my usual 'total loss of the original video' method!!) . .
straight back down town to do yet more until gone 6pm . . walked . . grabbed a frantic sandwich, banana and jaffa cakes while topping up the charge on the battery again!! . .
Mum walked down to join me and then leaving Sally at home, we both headed out to the breakwater to see the fireworks . .
UNbelievably 'frantic' day - on the run almost the entire time so it felt!!! EXHAUSTED!

eventually to bed around 2am, after having attempted unsuccessfully to unwind a bit in front of the TV.
23 - Up around 9:30am feeling very tired! . . walked late. One of the dog walkers spotted me as he drove by, and stopped to give me a couple of blank DVDs. He's the only one who needs DVD+Rs, I have none left and suggested he buy a couple if he wanted to see Volume 3. I guess he does. lol . sat in BGdns briefly, watchhing the helium balloon across the bay going up and down, and trying to get a feel for how high it goes in relation to the horizon and the frequency of its movements etc for some future video opportunity. I need a clear, good visibility day to film it on maximum zoom, and today isn't it. . . PCd the shoals of fish/'boiling sea' video some more. . Mum called in with food donations for brief chats and a coffee. . called it quits on the 'boiling sea' video. Gives a sense of the experience I think. :o) (YouTube link).. ate mum donated sausgae rolls crisps, banana and jaffa cakes . . napped. . .walked. People and beer cans everywhere. Neat sunset. Home around 9:30pm. .charged all my batteries etc . . cooked sausages, bacon, eggs and beans and ate with four pieces of bread and butter. . touched base with BB . . TVd/PCd until bed around 2am. Couldn't sleep and tossed and turned for ages! :o(
22 - Up around 8:30am . . walked and filmed the harbour construction site until gone midday!! I STILL haven't managed to capture any video of the 'pile driving' machine at work! It was briefly running when I arrived and then promptly stopped. :o( . briefly shopped for some ham, bread and Flora, and scored a bone for Sally on the way home. While I was in the butchers with Sally tied up outside, a passer by got his camera out and took a couple of shots of Sally. How strange. lol He should just look on YouTube! lolol . . PCd . . ate ham and lettuce sandwiches and crisps . . napped until around 6:30pm . . walked around 7pm. Magical evening quite warm with little wind.

Firemen // 'boiling' fish and seagulls. .

sat around for just a little longer on the rocks in BGdns on the way back. Could have easily stayed out even longer just taking in the amazing atmosphere. . finally back home around 10:15pm!! . .sat in the back garden with coffee and cigarettes while the video transferred to the PC . . PCd for hours getting nowhere. I haven't a clue what I'm gonna do with all that Fireman video!?? None of the music I have seems to work for me. . ate bowls of muesli and a banana before to bed around 4:15am. Difficulty getting to sleep - perhaps because it was already fairly light and birdsong noisy outside! s
21 - Woken by Sally coming upstairs and clattering around on the bedroom floorboards around 3am, and again a little later (including that thing where she just sits and stairs at me to wake me up somehow!) until I eventually got up, just left the back door open and returned to bed! . poor fitful sleep until back up around 8:30am!! Well - that's like having had no sleep at all! :o( . . walked. Sally has an upset stomach. . PCd and worked on the tits video yet again. I've spent a ridiuclous amount of time on that one - eventually degenerating into a rapid series of two or three second edits!! It's nowhere near what I'd intended, but I've just about had a gut full of staring at it. Called it quits mid afternoon and just left it as it was, rather than make a proper job of it (as is usual with most every video I've done!). (YouTube link). . . ate two sausages, three bacon, half a tin of baked beans with chopped onion and four pieces of bread and butter followed by some chocolate covered raisins . . napped until the alarm at 7:30pm . . just too exhausted. Skipped the evening walk again. .touched base briefly with JK . . PCd this while - dare I say it - watching football on the TV!!!!!! ME!! Watching football! lololol Just amused me to watch the Moscow match between the reds and blues, because both PS and JK are so into it all (the reds). I can't help it - I was actually rather hoping the reds would lose for some reason. They didn't. All seems like an utter load of totally irrelevant nonsense to me. Always has, always will. .touched base with BB . . PCd on and decided to throw together the sunset video (from the 13th) after all. (YouTube link) . .TVd and ate bowls of cornflakes before to bed around 2am again.
20 - Up around 8:30am . . while PCing a bit of this, the post arrived earlier than usual and it was my new camcorder battery already. :o) On opening the package, it appears to be slightly different to the one I had from them a little while ago!!! It feels lighter, is more 'angular' (nasty pointy corners) in construction, is oh so very slightly larger, but most interestingly on the face of it appears to perhaps be a tiny bit 'better'. 1800mAh capacity as opposed to the other which is 1500mAh. We'll see. . .walked and filmed more tits. . PCd, downloading this mornings footage. . mowed the lawns while the camcorder played/PC recorded. . ate ham rolls and crisps . .AHAAAAAA! Actually caught Sally having a brief go at giving the garden border a bit of a dig. So it IS her doing it!! GRRRRrrrrr!! . . napped until around 6pm . .walked. Sat around near the tits nest doing a bit more filming, but actually not for any footage of the birds (I already have enough), but more to experiment with different camera settings and see how the new battery would perform etc. .BB called only to be quickly dismissed because I was experimenting with the camcorder footage. .called BB back later . . cooked and ate four sausages with chips after midnight. . TVd until bed at 2am.s
19 - Up not long before 9am! . . something has dug up the pottings in the garden, and strewn all the earth all over the patio AGAIN!! Traces of large wide paw prints were visible in the soil. I just can't recall when Sally could have had the opportunity to have done that? Convinced myself they were NOT Sally's paw prints, despite having the same overall pad/claw formation. Poor dog - she came in for some growling and chastisement from me the other day when it wasn't even her! I need to surf and learn what badgers paws are like I think. . . walked . .swept and dug the garden border back into place - AGAIN! Tried to rescue at least some of the dying plantings by relocating them once more into a small pot in the conservatory!! :o(. . PCd. . cooked and ate two burgers, two sausages and onion with six pieces of bread and butter . . napped . . walked and grabbed a little more video of the great tits. Actually quite a pleasant and peaceful place to sit, surrounded by trees and young green bracken etc. . PCd the tits footage again - more - again! Uggh. . touched base briefly with BB . . PCd more. Terribly time consuming cutting down hours of video into the fractions of a second when the birds actually appeared! On reflection - I'm not sure the result is worth all the effort. :o( . . briefly surfed and then went on e-bay and ordered another non oem BN-VF714U replacement battery for the camcorder from eBay member 'premiumdigital' (as I'd done once before) for 10.98 including postage. Having a couple of those will take away a bit of the anxiety I always have whenever I start filming anything. The way I use the camera (much screen and zoom use) the batteries don't last very long at all, and I'm ALWAYS trying to juggle things and economize so as not to run out of juice. It's a real pain. ALWAYS run out of power before running out of tape. A spare battery and tape in a pocket would give me MUCH greater flexibility in what I attempt to do. Partiularly relevant given that as from Saturday, the 'Brixham Heritage Festival' is on, with much happening all over the place, all day every day for a week! . . ate lettuce, onion and mayo sandwiches with crisps and a couple of Mr Kipling tarts. . TVd until bed after 2am.
18 - Woken by Sally around 7:30am. . .walked and carried on around the harbour a little before eventually back via BGdns and the local store where I was tempted by a 'relatively' expensive pack of 'proper' beef burgers for a change. . PCd and spent hours and hours messing around moving stuff from disk to disk, desperately trying to find space to put everything so I could once again empty the new Freecom 500Gb external drive. I've belatedly realised that it came pre-formatted and ready to use with a 'FAT' format/file system. All well and good, but I subsequently discovered to my cost, that it can't handle BIG files of the type I'm constantly ending up with, with all this video work. Something along the lines of not being able to handle files over 4Gb or thereabouts!! Eventually managed to copy over all the files to my old external 250Gb drive and then set about re-formatting the 500Gb drive into NTFS format/file system. It all took HOURS to do!! . . Sis2 called to touch base. Called her back a couple of times and ended up chatting about who knows what for a good couple of hours. . BB called . . ate 'proper' burgers (wow - what a difference to the cheap rubbish I usually eat!), chips and bread and butter . . napped leaving the PC STILL formatting the 500Gb drive!! . .walked and ended up having a bit of a go at filming the great tits who have a nest in the brickwork of the old gun emplacement in BGdns. . on the way home I was positively startled by a red car pulling up nhear me blowing it's horn. Scared me to death. Thought I was in for some aggro! Turned out it was the dog walker guy without a dog who works part time at the golf course. He had a bulging carrier bag of left overs scraps for Sally again. :o) . . TVd . . touched base with BB. . TVd/PCd until early before bed. s
17 - Woke to the sound of the heavy rain around 7:30am. .PCd a bit of this, not eager to have to go out and get drenched. Eventually went out and got drenched!. . PCd and messed around looking up all the complaints about how slow the Virgin Broadband has become for everyone! I can't even watch the BBC news live on the PC anymore - and always have to wait for a YouTube video to buffer loads before I dare attempt to play it! :o( It IS something to do with a change at the ISP and not a problem my end! :o(. . Mum called in with food donations and the paper. She was eager to watch the latest couple of videos again - and again - and AGAIN!! lolol Figured it'd be best to burn her a special DVD disk of just those two, so she could take them home and play them to death (like I've done myself!) in her own good time. . ate Mum donated sausage rolls, crisps and chocolate. . PCd surfing camcorder batteries, external hard disks, fisherman(photographer) style multi pocket waistcoats, etc, etc, etc. . napped until around 6pm. Still pouring with rain! Sorry Sally - not walking in that again - just the garden tonight . .TVd/PCd . . BB called briefly . . PCd the evening away just messing around before deciding I WOULD make use of the bits of the powerboats I'd videod on full magnification across the bay on the 11th. Pretty poor stuff, but gives a sense of the bizarre sight - and remarkably loud engines (one boat (not sure which) in particular). (YouTube link). . . ate Mum donated ham rolls and crisps around midnight before to bed around 2am. s
16 - Woken by Sally earlier, snoozed on then up around 9am. . .walked in a bit of drizzle and what eventually turned into a pretty thick fog, and carried on down town to buy some bread and tour the charity shops . . PCd. Actually got round to having a look at the YouTube facility for adding some 'allowed' music (non copyright type?) to uploaded videos, but WHAT a sorry waste of time that was. An oh SO limited selection of music and no means to actually in any way sync. the video with the backing track. Useless. . surfed and had a go at looking for non copyright/public domain type music tracks but not very succcessful. What little I DID find was all but useless for what I've been doing. So - guess I'll just have to carry on breaking everyones copyright until someone notices and pulls my plug!!! :o( (like everyone else on YouTube seems to happily do!). . drank the last of the Sainsburys 'red wine in a box' and cooked and ate sausage and onion sandwiches . . napped until around 6pm. .walked . .I think it's fair to say, I'm 'struggling' with my mood at the moment. Been feeling pretty 'unstable' and mostly down for a while now. :o( . . touched base briefly with BB . . TVd . .ate tinned spaghetti bolognese, grated cheese and bread and butter . . TVd nothing until bed around 1am.
15 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then woken by the phone ringing around 8:50am. Number witheld and no message left - again!!? Grrr . . walked in the drizzle and breifly dropped in at Mums on the way back to have a quick go at re-affixing the hoselock fitting on her garden hose, which keeps blowing off with the water pressure. Could maybe use a new one. .PCd headachey. . Mum popped down (she just couldn't resist) to have a look at the latest 'Royal' videos. Must have watched them both at least four times!! lol . .headachey. . ate Mum donated ham rolls with crisps . . succesfully napped for a few hours. Woke still headachey. .got another e-mail reply from the person at the nursery school, which made me feel all nice. "We showed the video to the children in the Nursery today (and again to their parents at hometime!) and they were totally captivated by it - not an easy thing - to have the full attention of over twenty 3 and 4 year olds for over 4 minutes!!!!! And the music brought a lump to the throat of a few of the staff - including me! Thank you once again. Kind regards" :o) It's little comments/moments like that which make all the hours I've put into these videos seem worthwhile. . . JK called to touch base. He's got a cold apparantly. Hmmm - I wonder if that's why I've not been feeling so good these last couple of days. Maybe I'm dealing with some sort of infection? . . walked . PCd and couldn't resist e-mailing the helicopter company the youtube links in case they were interested (despite being worried the pilot may get a slap on the wrist for allowing kids to play with their pricey investment!). . touched base with BB . . TVd . . ate marmite, mayo and lettuce sandwiches with crisps and then a couple of bowls of cornflakes . .TVd/PCd until bed around 2am.sa
14 - Woken by Sally earlier then up around 9am. . .walked between light showers. Wow - what a difference in the weather. . PCd . .Mum called to touch base . .popped into the garden at some point to check on bored Sally, only to find she'd dug up the pottings I'd got from Mum and meticulously planted in a border the other day! Ruined! Grrrr. :o(. . PCd most of the day away wrestling with the poor bits of video I captured from yesterday's royal visit. Pretty obvious I used to be a plane spotter I think. That video and choice of music seems to be more about the 'feelings' of the helicopter than anything else! lololol (YouTube link). . .ate sausages, bacon, chips, beans and bread and butter. . napped fitfully between the phone ringing - number witheld, no message left again, until the alarm at 7:30pm! . .SO tired! Pouring with rain and with thunder in the distance, I skipped the evening walk . . TVd. . touched base with BB . . TV/PCd until bed around 1am. s
13 - Up around 7:30am. . .walked before it was too hot. .left Sally at home (after having checked the timetable to make sure the trains were running!) and drove to Churston station to suss out where the trains come and go and where 'could' be places to film them from. .walking along the deserted platform, sadly before I'd even taken my camera out of my pocket, a mouse suddenly ran out in front of me being chased by what I think is called a stoat. A long slender furry thing. My presence I presume, scared the stoat off and the poor mouse ended up in a dangerously exposed crevice in the rocky bank right in front of me! . . milled around with the video camera and waited for the train to come through and then had a go at videoing it . . waited the mere half an hour or so until it came back through before calling it quits. I've pretty much figured out what may or may not work in terms of camera positions, so will have to return there sme time for a proper go at capturing that train/oldy worldy atmosphere. . PCd and did laundry . distracted from the PC by the sound of a low flying helicopter. Very low! In fact - ooooh - retractable undercarriage, down - it just HAS to be landing over there somewhere and there really is only one place it could be! Debated with myself for ages before hurridly dashing back out with the cameras and Sally, leaving both the washing machine and PC, running programs unattended! . . sure enough, as I'd suspected, reaching Furzeham green I was presented with the bizarre sight of a very shiny blue helicopter parked up in the middle of the football pitch, with hardly another soul around!?? Wandered straight over and asked a policeman what was going on. Turned out it'd delivered the Princess Royal Princess Anne! Wow - that has to be the lowest security/police presence imaginable for such a person/target! Incredible in this day and age!????? Image of Starspeed Ltd. G-BYOM Sikorsky S-76C 'Spirit' in Brixham, DevonPretty much freely wandered around with Sally and the camera and camcorder taking whatever close up snaps of the helicopter I wanted. The low police presence that WAS there was particularly camera shy. I actually wanted a picture with a policeman in it at one point, but the officer only agreed when I said I'd take his back to me. Understandable I suppose, but it showed a little ignorance of how zoom lenses work from a distance! If anyone actually wanted to document the individuals behind the uniforms, it's hardly difficult. . eventually retreated from the burning hot sun and sat in the shade under a tree alongside the road, waiting for the helicopter passengers to return and fly away, at around 2pm so I was told. .while waiting, all of a sudden all the children from the nearby nursery appeared and were allowed to go and have a close up look at the helicopter. Couldn't resist turning the camera on and pretty much letting it capture the scene. I'm not a 'kids' person, but even 'I' thought they looked SO cute, all dressed in their hats to protect them from the sun, and innocently 'playing' with the helicopter. The icing on the cake of that little interlude was, when the kids left, they suddenly ended up parading right past the camera. That'll just HAVE to be a little video all in its own right I think. I could almost hear the music in my mind as I was filming it. lol . Hats off to the pilot, who seemed to be a really friendly type with no objections to going out of his way to allow people to make the most of the excitement of having such a machine nearby. . ended up getting into a conversation (prompted by Sally as usual) with an old lady in a wheelchair.Image of the Princess Royal Princess Anne in Brixham, Devon I made some reference to tying her up while I ran around with the camera and how I hoped she'd be ok when the helicopter took off. The lady suggested she'd hold onto her lead and look after her if I wished. I didn't fully think it through and suggested she'd be better off tied to something - maybe the woman's wheelchair? The woman quickly pointed out that wouldn't be such a good idea! lolol Yeah - I hadn't thought that through. If Sally HAD got spooked by the helicopter and had decided to run, she'd have ended up towing the poor woman in her chair across the field!! Now THAT would have made for a neat bit of video! Hillarious image. lololol :o) . eventually tethered Sally to a nearby sign post and got her all settled down before anything happened . . .a little after 2pm a pretty anonimous looking couple of cars turned up and sure enough it was the princess and a small entourage. With hindsight, if I'd fully appreciated the low key nature of what was happening, had thought things through a bit better and had the nerve, I could have easily got into a different position with the camera and got some much better 'in her face' shots. Very nerve wracking after all that waiting, to have only a few seconds to try to get 'the money shot' as it were. As it was, I was lucky to end up only 'just' managing to get a few glimpses of her as she quickly walked from the car to the helicopter. There were however a few rather decent frames of her, being particularly smiley after I think having spotted the line of nursery children across the road, some of whom must have already had their fingers in their ears, all ready for the noise of the helicopter. lololol . the minute they were all in the helicopter, I picked up the camera and tripod and rushed out from under the trees (unchallenged) and across the grass to take up a kneeling position in the middle of the field . It'd seemed to me that would be the best place to be, to take some unobstructed head on, up and over shots of the actual lift off and departure. As it turned out, that was a mistake! If I'd just stayed where I was to begin with, I'd have probably got some better shots! Damn damn damn! Oh well - I guess it takes experience to learn that stuff. Can't imagine how stressful it must be, being a professional cameraman/photographer trying/HAVING to get such shots. No wonder they all appear pushy and aggressive when you see the press pack on TV. .in no time at all the helicopter was airborne (must have been a real danger from bird strike!) , and whoosh, it was heading out over the bay and Paignton and the excitement was all over. Well - that was an unexpected little interlude. :o) Headed straight back home to transfer the footage to the PC. . cooked and ate bacon, chips, eggs and baked beans with four pieces of bread and butter. . napped for an hour or so . . walked late and sat on the rocks in BGdns filming the none too impressive (by down here standards that is) sunset. . PCd the night away wrestling with the 'kids/helicopter' video. Think it worked out pretty ok. Very cute. (YouTube link) .surfed briefly and located an e-mail address for the local school, and dropped them a 'you may be interested in a short video clip' e-mail with the youtube link. Such is the modern day hysteria about people pointing cameras at children etc etc, I was actually a little uneasy about the possibility of someone taking exception to it for some inexplicable reason! . . TVd and ate a banana and a couple of buttered fruit scones before to bed around 3am.
12 - Up around 8am. .felt awful with what turned out to be an upset stomach . . all walked late . . coffee and fruit scone things and then bid PS goodbye around 11am . .sat around/PCd/TVd the day away feeling yucky . . napped for an hour or so until woken by 'insistant' phone calls from JK! :o( . .reluctantly ate a few biscuits and a banana just to keep me going . . walked feeling increasingly unwell! Sat in BGdns for ages and eventually met up with JK for a chat, before soon heading home very slowly, still not feeling well at all. Feel exhausted - again! . . touched base with BB . . ate corned beef sandwiches, crisps, cheese, spring onions, tomatoes and a little chocolate. Felt a little better for having eaten but oh SO tired! To bed by around 11pm.
11 - Up around 8am. . all walked late. Headed on round the harbour in the oppressive heat and out to the Breakwater bistro for a cooked breakfast and a cup of coffee. Felt all uncomfortable letting PS pay for everything every time he comes down, so felt obliged to buy the breakfast. Two breakfasts, and three cups of coffee left me little change out of 15!!!! Ouch!!! I really would rather have gone without!! I mean - as an addict - what would I rather have, one single breakfast one morning, or to be able to smoke for almost a couple of weeks?!! The smokes, obviously! :o(. . all walked out along the breakwater and back . . .sat in BGdns watching the distant offshore powerboat racing! How come I didn't bump into any advertisements anywhere, that was happening? Would have been worth going across on the ferry for! Seemed utterly bizarre to me that with all that going on, and the normal incredible views from there, PS was more interested in reading his newspaper about football scores and the like!????

PS headed out to find a pub with a TV so he could watch the end of the football match! . . napped briefly. . JK popped in for chats and tea. PS returned from the pub.

both drank a bottle of wine . . TVd until bed around 2am. ds
10 - Up around 8am. .walked . . did dish washing and vacuuming etc chores, trying to get the place just a little more habitable for PSs visit

all drove to dartmouth . . across on the upper ferry for 2.50 . . parked and then all wandered around rather aimlessly in the heat. .treated to an ice cream by PS. . drove to the castle. . coffee. .

back on the lower ferry for 3 !??? . .

walked and on down around the harbour and ended up in the waterside pub by the marina.

carvery

eventually to bed around 3am!! ds
9 - Up around 7:20am. . .walked . . pottered around in the garden. . re-potted a couple of fir trees and then moved things around and took down some of the pot hangers old wooden shelves etc from the fence near the kitchen window. De-cluttering! . . drank a tea cup of red wine and cooked and ate four small cheeseburgers . .napped for an hour and a half until the alarm at 7pm . .walked . . gave away another dvd to a holiday maker returning home tomorrow . . watched my own DVd again! . . .touched base with BB
8 - Up real late after 10am . . .walked. On down to the harbour and eventually back via town. Bought myself a large bag of potatoes and had to lug them all the way home in the heat. Another part of experimenting of doing without the car. . only just got through the door and Mum called to say the cavity wall insulation guys were there doing her job. Damn - I'd forgotten all about that happening! She revealed there had been some discussion about the constuction of the end wall of the house adjacent to the garage and she'd more or less agreed they wouldn't do that wall!! Huh???!!!! That didn't sound right to me. Ended up dropping everything, leaving Sally at home and racing up Mums to reluctantly get involved and get to the bottom of what was the story with the end wall.

up Mums to sit around for ages

back with Mum donated food supplies and the 'Mind Your Own Business' pottings she'd let me have, freshly dug out of one of her borders. . a quick coffee before Mum came down and then walked with Mum to the woods to see the bluebells. Would you believe it! Rain . . tired. Ate mum donated ham rolls, two sausage rolls, crisps and chocolate . . struggled to stay awake . .touched base with BB . .chocolate and a Mars drink before early to bed around 11pm.
7 - Up around 7:15am. . walked and carried on all the way out through the woods and out and along to Churston station to maybe have a go at videoing the steam train at close quarters. Hellish dangerous and unpleasant walk for part of the way along the busy main roads without pavements. Amazing how so many lorries and cars will happily race by at high speeds quite literally inches away from killing a pedestrian (and with a dog at that!). Angers me how pedestrians have somehow become such second class obstacles to be so readily dismissed/disposed of! . .eventually reached the station and sat on the platform reading through one of the brochures from a dispenser. Oh for goodness sake! The damn trains aren't running today! Would you believe it! . . popped into the out-of-town 'farm store' on the way back and treated myself to some awfully expensive pork and leek and cumberland sausages. Walked all the way back home (mostly on nasty pavementless roads) in the sun and heat to cook and eat sausage sandwiches. . it wasn't a 'particularly' long walk (5 miles round trip?), but it saw Sally come home limping really badly from her front legs again!! Really starting to worry about her! :o(. .ended up in the garden 'pottering' around . cut my hair. .TVd . . ate biscuits crisps corned beef sandwiches . .TVd/PCd until early and birdsong before bed! ss
6 - Up around 8am . . walked. Carried on out towards the breakwater and bumped into Jk along the way who decided to walk out to the end with me. . I'd intended to maybe film the distant balloon going up and down, but it turned out to be unmoving, presumably because it was too windy. In fact, it seemed really quiet all around and I found nothing worth getting the camera out of my pocket for at all. That magical manic period I went through, of filming everything, really does seem to be over with. :o( . scored Sally a big bone in the butchers . Hellish walking through town with JK!! It appears he knows absolutely everybody, and every few paces he had to stop and exchange words with people! . back home for a cuppa and chats with JK in the garden, while Sally got to work on her bone . . drank some wine and ate ham rolls with crisps and some chocolate . . PCd. .walked and sat on rocks near the waters edge drinking a tin of red bull before eventually ambling back around the harbour and through town . . TVd . . ate a slice of gala pie with crisps . .touched base with BB . . ate the last of the beef with bread and butter . . TVd until bed around 12:30am.
5 - Up just before 9am . .PCd bit of this . . walked. . finished off the time consuming de-weeding/digging over a bit of the front garden border, and trimmed a bit of the new growth from next doors hedge by the living room window. . left Sally at home and drove in the car with DVDs to Pn. and had a go at finding the street in which 'A' (the busker) lives, intending to give him everything if he was in or to just put them through his letterbox if he wasn't. Round and round a bit in the heavy traffic and hint of drizzle before eventually finding it and parking up. Called on the mobile and was invited round. . in to hand over the discs and for a coffee and chats . . drove back in nightmarish slow moving traffic and rain . .stopped off at the local store to do another bunch of DVD cover photocopies . .ate microwaved 'donated' roast beef with chips . . napped until the alarm at 7pm. . skipped the evening walk and pottered in the garden a little more. Ended up re-potting a small conifer which had been in a hanging basket when I moved into the house. Seems a crazy thing to have in a hanging basket. Bit by bit, all the high maintenance plants in all the pots are starting to die off and be whittled down to stuff which just takes care of itself and I actually want to keep. . sat in the front garden with coffee and cigarettes until after dark watching aerobatic bats circling around the garden. . touched base with BB. . TVd the night away. . ate Mum donated Mr Kipling apple tarts before to bed around 1:30am. s
4 - Woken earlier by Sally clattering into the bedroom, snoozed on then up around 9:10am . . walked late, sat around quite a bit, got in a bit of conversation with dog walkers and inevitably ended up giving away the last couple of copies I have of DVD3. Apparantly, so I was told, when that guy I filmed was out on the breakwater in the stormy weather, people had actually been so concerned for his wellfare they'd called the police or some such! . . PCd a bit, burned a few discs, and then prompted by being up Mums yesterday, sorted out one of my boxes I had yet opened since I've been here! Threw away most of what was in it (lots of old letters and paperwork), which I've been keeping for at least twenty years or more, but which suddenly seemed so utterly pointles hanging on to. Thankfully, in that very box was my old paper cutter, guillotine type thingy, which I've been very eager to locate, what with cutting up all these bits of paper for the DVD covers. . touched base with 'A' (the busker) with the possible intention of heading over to give him a copy of all the relevant audio/video files (so he can 'take ownership' of them), but they were busy - heading off to the Paignton 'bike event' on the sea front. That made me dabble with the idea of heading over to have a look myself, but I didn't want to drive and just couldn't face the prospect of such a long walk. On top of that, I just knew that seeing a bunch of bikers and bikes would just get me all wound up and pining to be back on a bike (which I seem to have felt increasingly of late, every time I see one)!! . . drank a tea cup of red wine and cooked four sausages, chips and fried bread . . napped until the alarm at 6pm . . walked. Pretty warm out. Just in time to hear what appeared to be the last number from a pretty decent rock band playing, drifting across the bay. Damn - should have gone over to have a look earlier shouldn't I! . . One of the regular morning dog walker crowd (the one who doesn't actually have a dog!) hailed me as I passed his house on the way home and said 'I've got something for you' as he rushed back inside. He shortly re-emerged carrying a plastic carrier bag containing a rather large amount of cooked roast beef! He works part time in a golf club somewhere, and we'd had more than one conversation about the amount of food that is thrown away by the place, which is perfectly edible but just surplus at the end of the day. I guess he must have taken pity on me after how I'd mentioned that for me, skipping a meal and going without food if I can, is put down as a successfull saving of money! He assured me it was all ok, and if not for me then for Sally. Cool. A large amount! . .weeded in the garden a little . . TVd/guitarred . touched base with JK and BB . .TVd . . ate cold lumps of beef (a bit tough being an end bit, but nothing wrong with that) and bread and butter. . to bed around 2am. ds
3 - Up just after 8am, a bit hot again. I think I need to dig out my summer duvet . . walked . . called in Mums on the way home, and devoted the rest of the morning and into the afternoon, to bringing everything down from her attic and helping her stack it temporarily in the garage. She's arranged for cavity wall insulation and a top up of loft insulation to be done (all free because of her age!?!) and it seemed like a good idea to clear the loft space so as not to cause the workmen any hassle. Since Mum can't climb up in the loft, it also seems like a good idea for her to ruthlessly sort through it all and chuck out all the old stuff she no longer needs/wants to keep. . eventually walked back home with Mum and food donations, and me carefully carrying the box containing the old mantle-piece clock I'd said I'd like which has been up there for years with my name kinda pencilled against it. I wouldn't normally be interested in such a thing, but the fact that it has chimes made it strangely desireable. . carefully unwrapped the clock and both messed around with it. Gingerly wound it up just a little and then kept on changing the time so as to be able to hear the two different chimes that it can produce. It used to be in some long dead auntie's house. I don't think it has any 'particular' value - it isn't 'particularly' old in 'antique' terms (I don't think even 100 years old), but it has a real presence with its loud ticking and extraordinary chiming

//

ate ham rolls, crisps and chocolate . . napped until the alarm at 6pm . . skipped the evening walk . . TVd/PCd . . touched base with BB . .PCd until early . . TVd and ate sausage rolls, crisps and chocolate before bed. s
2 - Up just after 9am overheating, and tired. That was an awful nights sleep . .Image of a distant helium balloon on Torquay seafrontwalked. Visible across the bay in the distance was the new helium balloon, on Torquay sea front. Freshly inflated this morning I think, after delays caused by winds. 14 for a flight it's going to be apparantly (!!), but as a one off, I guess I'm gonna have to try to do that some time in the future (like I did on the one in Bristol). It WAS a minor 'experience', and with the views down here, will probably be more so. . . PCd, e-mailed, burned some more discs, cleared up and got on top of some of the unattended mess I've been in for weeks. Completed some paypal process I was in the middle of when things got hectic back in Bristol in 2006, and sent a thank you to someone who'd just donated me 10! :o) . . did a couple of loads of laundry. Hmmm - is that washing machine starting to play up? That last load (bed linen) felt pretty soapy when I took it out, and there's a bunch of soap left in the drawer dispenser like I've never had happen before!? :o( . . cooked and ate two bacon, four sausages, chips and two pieces of bread and butter . . napped until the alarm around 6pm . . walked . . PCd a bit of this . .touched base with BB . . PCd more and knocked off a silly short 'interlude' (YouTube link) (even cut out all the flymo action and left it on the 'cutting room floor'! lol . What IS the digital equivalent of the old film terms, and particularly 'footage'??) . .ate corned beef and lettuce sandwiches . . TVd. Would have gone to bed earlier but bumped into a James Taylor concert on TV and couldn't resist staying up and watching it. Superb. . eventually to bed around 3am.
1 - Up around 9am . .walked . . mowed the lawns. Haven't done that for ages and they were threatening to get out of hand. . Mum popped in for a coffee and chat . . cut my hair . . ate three Mum donated corned beef and lettuce rolls with crisps . . JK called to touch base . . napped until the alarm around 6pm . . walked. Along the route is a small area of grass with large ornate boulders planted in it, for effect but moreover to prevent the playing of ball games I suspect. Nevertheless, as is the case on many occasions, a group of kids were playing football there (with the ball inevitably going into peoples gardens and the road). A block of garages is opposite, and the end garage houses some guys full dresser Harley motorcycle. As I came along the street, he crossed over the road, approached the kids and asked them not to be playing footbal there and was in the middle of giving them directions to the nearby football field as I passed. Imagine someone trying that back where I come from? He'd have got at the very least a load of abuse, and would probably have found his garage complete with bike, burned down in the very near future. (In fact - back in Bristol, he'd probably have had that bike stolen already, given the detached-block nature of the garages in particular!). It's little things like that which people who've lived here all their lives, really can't appreciate about the place. It's STILL incredible to me the number of houses I walk past where they have items of property just happily stored in their gardens - in full view. (ladders, push bikes, cement mixers, solar lights, etc, etc, etc - you name it - all manner of everything). Once again - back 'home', all that stuff would have been stolen in no time. . . PCd . . touched base with BB . . PCd the night away trying to put together the 'cool little car' video(YouTube link), instead of catching up on paper work/bills/unreplied e-mails, etc. . That should have been an easy little snippet to throw together, but somehow for the life of me I couldn't figure out what the hell was going on with the music and where the natural cuts should have been put!? Took ages and is rather disappointing. . when DID they stop making cars with character and personality, and introduce that one-size-fits-all 'jelly mould' they use on them ALL now?. . to bed around 3pm only to toss and turn unable to sleep through hunger. Got back up and ate bowls of muesli before eventually to sleep some time after 4am!! s
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