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<My Diary Archive 2006 My Diary Archive>

1 - Woken late after 9am by noise from a neighbour working on his car outside . . .walked real late in the already stifling heat. Did a little litter duty and collected up all the beer bottles in a carrier bag and put it in the freshly burned out bin, by the seat. . . Mum called to touch base and confirm the poetry books I'd ordered for her, had at last arrived (albeit a or so more than they'd told me they'd be! Grrr). . .PCd just a bit of this with the fan on next to me. I don't want to be awake . . . LB called at the door and dropped off some sausage rolls she didn't want. Nice one. :o) That'll be lunch then - and I may even get away without having to wipe off a plate from the piles that all need washing. . .TVd/PCd . . . ate LBs sausage rolls with crisps . . .TVd/PCd attempting to avoid the England v Portugal football match. Difficult because of the horrible shouts and 'animal' noises emanting from supporters around the area - and from the 'inbreeds' pub in particular. . eventually changed channels and bumped into the very end of the match which was a penalty shoot out thingy. I confess, it was quite interesting when down to that. Every time someone took a shot, I quickly flicked over to my CCTV camera to listen to the neighborhood response. I had to resist cheering myself, when the England team lost. :o) The neighborhood seemed very quiet all of a sudden. lololol Very glad that nonsense is all over and done with. . Has anyone else noticed what has become of the BBC News? There was a time when you assumed you could pretty much rely on the BBC to give a decent, 'relatively' unbiased view of what was happening in the world. The more you come to notice it, and the more you look at other news services, the more blatant it is, that the BBC news is now almost some sort of 'populist light entertainment' program with less and less actual content! They constantly see the need to report 'live from the scene', continualy when absolutely nothing is to be gained from doing so, since whatever is being reported happened there hours or days before! A presenter pointlessly stood at any time of the day in front of the rotating sign outside the police HQ in London seems to be a particular favourite. If they cut back on the mindless unecessary to and fro chat between the presenters, they'd be able to get more reports in the alotted time! And as for whoever decides what we get to hear about - sheesh - is the result of the football really worthy of being the headline main story, to the exclusion of who knows what?! Appalling. RIP the BBC!. . . walked and found 1.10p. The chip shop guy was stood outside his shop and exchanged a few words. He told me the first name of 'the girl' who's been causing me grief! So - now I know. (Xxxxxxx 'the teenage' bitch? lol) . as we stood outside his shop chatting, there was what sounded like a bang from the main road behind us, which drew our attention. A car on the absolute very edge of losing control, came screaming round the junction in the middle of the road, raced past the shops and then raced off down another street. Turned out, he was being chased by the police. I think he may have been of Asian origin. Seconds later a police car went sailing past on the main road - having missed the turn! The police car eventually turned at a nearby junction and headed off in the direction the fleeing offender had gone! Ho hum. I only mention this because, given the trajectory of the offending car on the junction, the excessive speed he was travelling, how the bits of road he was on were covered in gravel because they are not driven on by normal traffic flow ('the marbles' they call it on the grand prix) - well - if he HAD lost it on that turn as he SO almost did, he absolutely WOULD have mounted the kerb and hit the chip shop guy, Sally and I!! So - we live to walk another day. :o/ I'm pretty sure the guy got away. The police car was way behind, and it wasn't until a good fifteen minutes later that the police helicopter was surveying the area. Nice day for a flight. . . BB called . . . TVd . . . ate multiple bowls of sugared muesli before to bed at midnight.
2 - Woken by Sally earlier then up around 8pm. Felt a bit 'better' than of late - in my mind kinda. Drove with Sally down to Conham at Hanham and walked along the river Avon, before it was 'too' hot. Sat at my usual sitting place up in the woods, for a very long time. People on horses were walking through the woods. Beautiful horses. Seemed like a very neat way of getting about. Had to keep a watchful eye out and get Sally on the lead when necessary, but she was very good. She really has matured into SUCH a cooool dog. Having her around, really has been the greatest 'privilege'. Extrordinary to be able to reach that level of trust and mutual understanding with another species. A real privilege. . . sat around in the heat and dead still air, with not a breath of a breeze, despite opening up the attic skylights in an attempt to draw the air through the house. I'm really no good with this type of weather. Definitely prefer it cooler - or even cold. At least with the cold you can put extra clothes on - no way of escaping the heat. Many more years like this, and I think I'm gonna have to be investing in an air conditioning unit, no matter how much they are!! . . .did dish washing chores and then cooked up a couple of ham rings, half a tin of baked beans and some chips and ate with four pieces of bread and butter . . .TVd. Ohwwww. So THAT is what a 'ABC' is. It is an 'Acceptable Behaviour Contract'! What utter ineffectual nonsense! . . PCd a bit trying to look up flight information for BB, but went round and round in circles getting absolutely nowhere for hours, and ended up in a filthy mood! It's suprising how many sites/search-engines/etc. are programmed to default to information relevant to the country in which you live - which is fine until you want to try and do something a little different from that! Grrrr. . .fitfully napped for maybe a couple of hours until woken by a really weird noise. Couldn't figure out what it was at first. Turned out to be rain! Really weird rain - great big heavy drops, only here and there before stopping and then a few more here and there. Very unusual. Raced up into the attic to shut the skylights. It carried on like that, as a thunder storm drifted through a very short distance to the East. Very weird weather - everything was deadly still until the storm arrived with some localised blustery winds. As soon as the storm had passed, it was all deadly still again. Wouldn't have taken a great deal more rotation to have made that into a tornado I reckon! . . TVd and watched the USA grand prix. . . walked (kinda in slow motion in the heat) and sat in some shade on the grass for a while, 'plucking' hair from Sally. . . TVd. Further to my rant at the poor state of the BBC news - the MAIN headline today was that David Beckham had resigned his England football team captancy. Secondary to that, was the death of two more British soldiers in Afghanistan. By this I am much offended. . . BB called . .TVd . .ate corned beef, onion, tomato, lettuce and mayo sandwiches with two bags of crisps . . .TVd/PCd until bed gone 2am. s
3 - Woken by Sally after 8am . . . walked around 9am in the already opressive, stifling heat. . . PCd this with the fan on full (but that just stirred the hot air soup), rather worried about how hot the PC probably is getting. . .couldn't face doing anything at all and sat around aimlessly before ending up back on the PC, surfing property all over the country. That simply saw me eventually get in a really down mood. :o( It really doesn't matter how much (or how little in the condition it is) my house is worth. It simply will NEVER be possible for me to afford the sort of place of which I've always dreamed (totally isolated - amongst trees and wildlife - pond/river/lake nearby - land for growing some food/keeping chickens even, etc, etc.). I need to 'get real'. :o( . . . IHB popped in briefly to touch base. He seemed 'better' - now on Prozac and aiming to return to work in a week or two for a couple of weeks before the school holidays. . tried to sleep but couldn't, so got back up and ate a couple of corned beef sandwiches with two bags of crisps . . . slept through the heat (have to shut the bedroom window to shut out the street noise to have any chance of sleeping) and didn't wake until around 7pm! . . . walked . . .briefly dabbled with the PC and captured some of the CCTV footage I'd been saving. I've not been bothering to save any of the 'mini moto stuff' I've seen on it for some months (because it's so frequent and the same old same old) but I think I may have an idea for a silly video. A couple of kids in particular from somewhere around the area, riding helmetless on unusually some sort of four stroke off-road type mini motorbike, have started to draw my attention (mostly because of the noise!). Pretty much every day, they go racing up and down the road/pavements and around the area. Just a few more sequences from them, and I should have enough of a compilation to match the length of the music I've selected. :o/ . . . BB called . . . TVd . .BB called . . cooked up two ham rings, two eggs, half a tin of baked beans and ate with four pieces of bread and butter after 11pm. . TVd (80 degrees F in front the TV!) . . ate half a tin of chilled-in-the-fridge pineapple rings from China I think, which I've had in the cupboard for years (the use by date on the tin says '30th April 2005'. Tasted fine to me.) . . . TVd until bed shortly after midnight. Tried sleeping with the electric fan on in the bedroom, directed at the bed.
4 - Fitful sleep. Didn't have the fan on for too long. Woke up all dry and dehydrated after an hour or two, so turned it off before having to head down to drink a pint of water! Tossed and turned until up around 8am . .cleared up in the conservatory! Sally'd been sick in the night! Hmmm! Out of date pineapple rings maybe? I feel ok. :o( . . PCd a bit of this . . walked . .blimey! Got a letter in the mail from the local school confirming they'd done what I'd asked, had attempted to identify the individuals concerned, and had forwarded the print outs of the photos I'd provided to the local beat manager! That was unexpected - and very good of them to let me know like that. . was just getting ready to leave the house to go shopping when the local beat manager called around 10:15am. He confirmed the 'main protagonist' girl was to be served with an ABC. I expressed my concerns over 'the overlap' in my actions, having perhaps unecessarily given the picture print outs to the local school etc, (he hadn't received them yet) but he didn't seem to have a problem with that and was totally confident he already knew who I had described (after having consulted the school liason officer). Apparantly, I am not the only one who that girl has been calling a 'paedo'!!!!!! Wonder who that other guy is, and how HE'S handled it? Better than me I suspect. :o( Amazing how one stupid little out of control girl can cause SO much upset and distress. . The beat manager seemed kinda 'upbeat' about the outcome of it all, as though it was all sorted - so I thanked him and tried to take on board his positive attitude. . Ok then. So - how much of my ongoing anxiety/fear/distress is legitimate, and how much is just the product of my own increased paranoia, existing only in MY mind? I guess I MUST (for the sake of my health and sanity!) try and 'draw a line under' these recent events, and assume the madness has settled down a bit. That's gonna be tough. Time will tell. (What was that old Laurel and Hardy film (Laurel and Hardy are SO neat) - where Stan Laurel was found still manning the trenches of World War 1 long after the end of the war? He was discovered, still dutifully marching up and down his bit of the trench in his own well worn footsteps years later. Not sure what the analagy may be - but that film springs to mind!) . . . left Sally at home and drove in the stifling heat to ASDA at Longwell Green to shop for food and groceries. I've been using up stuff around the house, trying to clear out some of the old stuff - and because I really couldn't face having to go out in the heat, and especially amongst throngs of 'people'!! Yuk! . . Stocked up on dog food and then what turned out to be mostly - chicken, chocolate, chocolate biscuits, ice cream and more chocolate!!! Yikes - spent 114.01!!!! Even bought a small bottle of water - not for the water, but more for the bottle - so I can keep refilling it from the tap, keep it in the fridge, and carry it with me when required. Silly really - I could have just waited and picked up one of the infinite number of empties from over the field to wash out. Grabbed some petrol on the way out (26.92 ltrs. @ 25). . .cooked up a couple of big cumberland sausages and ate them in four bread rolls, and then ate half the bar of ASDAs own, economy chocolate I'd bought to test. Very cheap - and actually not that bad . . PCd . . Somewhere around 4pm a forecast thunderstorm began to roll in - with maybe just a few degrees drop in temperature. Gotta give those forecasters credit - they are SO often absolutely spot-on these days. Who'd have thought such a blisteringly hot, clear sky day, would have seen a storm like that suddenly appear. BIG thunder and lightning with eventually some blustery torrential rain! Ran around with the cam-corder a bit, but I wasn't really in the right place to get any decent footage. I dunno - with a different life and country, I reckon I could have ended up being a storm chaser! At around 4:40pm the storm was right on top of us - and there was a lightning strike, oh SO close! The flash-bang was almost simultaneous! Absolutely deafening. I love a good thunder storm, but sometimes it IS scary! Actually had me race into the attic and look all around, just to make sure I hadn't been hit! Sods law isn't it - wouldn't suprise me if at some point my attic gets blown away! Very suprised not to see any trace in sight of what may have been hit. . . within a relatively short time, the storm had passed to the north and the still heat returned, to evaporate all traces of the heavy rain almost immediately! . .TVd until walk time. Walked and found 5p. . on the way back from the field, rounding a corner, I spotted a large German Shepherd up ahead the way we had to walk, on his own, loose, sniffing around a lamp post and here and there! Oh dear. :o( As we carried on towards where he was, he wandered away across the road and went sniffing around near the fence to the pub beer garden! As we passed by he eventually spotted us and came charging over the road towards Sally, all a growl, teeth out and hackles up!!!!! I thought we were gonna be in trouble and envisaged having to do some hand to paw combat to protect Sally, but as German Shepherds seem to so often do, he did his scary posturing thing and then pulled up short and turned away and went back over towards the beer garden fence. Phew! A pleasant local guy who I've exchange a few words with, and who always honks his horn and waves if he ever sees me about anywhere, was sat with his wife (and young child I think) in the beer garden, and called out that the dog had just appeared, wandering around on its own. (Only a couple of days ago I had a chat with him in the street, and found out that he has in fact got SERIOUS health issues!! You'd hardly know it to look at him, other than he does appear to have become a bit thinner than he used to be - but then haven't we all! Apparantly, he has cystic fibrosis - bad - and is the recipient of a double lung transplant!!!!!!!!! On top of that, he relatively recently caught some sort of infection and has been pretty rough. He too has his tales to tell of hassles with passing yobs and attempts to protect his car from acts of vandalism etc. - all the more vital to him since he appears to be a part time driving instructor!!! Poor guy - that's the last thing he needs on top of his health worries.) With Sally in tow it would have been difficult to get involved - and frankly, I figure I've done more than my fair share of taking charge of the neighbourhoods stray dogs!! Hard to explain - but I'm just tired of feeling responsible for everything, when no one else around here seems to give a toss! Racked my brains trying to think of who may have a German Shepherd nearby (as the one running loose happily strolled through the opne pub door and into the bar!), but could only think of the house on the corner (who I believe still has one, although you NEVER see it out for a walk! :o( ) Knocked on their door as I passed by, but the kid who answered said it wasn't theirs. Hell - for all I knew, it could have been owned by someone in the pub! I returned home and fed Sally as normal - but of course me being me - I ended up feeling terrible guilt and concern for the stray dog, who I'd just 'turned my back on'! :o( It preyed on my mind. Damn, damn, damn. Ended up putting the TV on and turning the CCTV camera around so I could keep an eye on the road, making the decision that if I saw the dog wandering up the street, I'd HAVE to go get it!! I don't belIEVE it! The minute I'd turned the camera round, I saw the dog just down on the opposite side of the road, sniffing around another lamp post! On closer examiniation and after having turned the sound way up, a short distance behind it in a garden, some guy was being directed to call at MY house (presumably because they thought it may be mine)!!!! Gooooood grief! That'll teach me to try and 'look the other way'! What WAS remarkable was how the guy was able to encourage the dog to follow him. Cool dog. Pre warned by the CCTV, I went out into the front garden (the guy was mistakenly knocking on next doors door) and as I opened my gate, the dog came straight into my garden!!! Ok, ok - point taken - I'll 'deal' with it! The guy turned out to be from the pub - and I'd say pretty drunk (although probably not by their standards)! He came into the garden and stood guard to stop the dog leaving while I dashed in to put a shirt on, change out of my shorts (I daren't go out in shorts!), secure Sally in the kitchen and grab her lead to use. Ended up wandering down the road in my slippers, with a strange dog on a lead, accompanied by a friendly drunk, intending to knock on a few doors before being forced to drive to a police station! All stopped and asked a couple of passing kids opposite, if they knew who's dog it was. They appeared confused and suggested it was mine!!!! lol Uh - no. Asked more kids, and they excluded an entire nearby street which had appeared to be a possiibility. As we passed the pub, I suggested the drunk should return to his beer since I had a vague suspicion the dog 'may' have come from an area up round the corner on the main road (I think a woman with several shepherds lives somewhere up that way), and I was gonna walk round that way and knock on a few doors. He insisted on much drunken hand shaking - in that way drunks sometimes do, as though you have suddenly become some sort of lifelong friend! . I stopped on my walk around the corner, to have a bit of a better look at the dog - alerted by the pronounced 'clicking' of its claws on the pavement. I think it was underweight - and its claws were seriously overgrown! Uhhh huh. :o( Seemed to have the makings of a very good temperament, if it was 'brought on' right. . asked a couple of people as I passed, if they knew the dog, but they didn't. Further on up on the main road, a guy was parking up in his Landrover, and I suddenly remembered I'd seen him on infrequent occasions over the field with a German Shepherd (which he never lets of its lead, acting as though it is a devil dog)! So infrequently, I'd forgotten all about him. At that same moment, the dog started pulling me into the driveway of his house. Would you believe it. It WAS his!!!! WHAT a stroke of luck. A brief exchange and I left him to it - with him asking his dog how he'd managed to get out! So - all's well that ends well - except - I now have to suppress my guilt laden suspicions, that dog isn't 'well' cared for. :o( Sheesh. People! . . Doggie do'ins. briefly popped my head round the pub door as I passed, and let the bar-propping drunk guy know the outcome of his good deed. He insisted on more 'friend for life' handshaking! Not a - um - 'nice place' for me to be (especially in slippers!! lol) - got out of there pretty quick, ignoring the calls from the corner of the bar from the lung transplant guy, because - I just needed to be outta there, real quick! . . .back home, I suddenly realised I must have recorded stuff on the CCTV camera, and ended up rewinding the tape, and sat and watched me walking down the road with the drunk and dog in tow!! lol Welcome to the twilight zone! lolololololol . . . TVd . . . BB called . . . TVd and ate one of the ten, cheap, ASDAs own choc-ices I'd bought earlier. What decadence! :o) . . . BB called . .TVd . . ate half a barbeque flavoured chicken with two bread rolls and then the other half of the cheap bar of ASDAs own, economy chocolate. Livin' like a king. :o) . . TVd until bed around midnight. s
5 - Woken by a loud bang from somewhere or other at 7:30am. . .PCd a bit of this . . .walked and had the opportunity of saying thank you for the letter and help I'd received, to a couple of the teachers on the school gate. .a tractor was over the field cutting the grass. Never ceases to amaze me how they do that with complete and utter disregard for all the litter. It just mows straight over all the glass/plastic bottles, beer cans, etc, etc. and smashes and shreds it all into little pieces all over the place. Filled two or three carrier bags full of mostly plastic drink bottles as we walked, and managed to re-locate them to the bins before the tractor reached them. . . PCd this . . .touched base with Mum . . blimey. Received a cheque for 100 in the mail - from Her Majesty's Courts Service - the compensation for my assault! I dunno - that just seems like SUCH a pittance in view of what I've been through. Hardly even covers the cost of the CCTV camera I felt 'forced' to buy, in a (largely failed) attempt to regain some sence of security in my own home! Worthy of note here, I haven't seen hide nor hair of Little Xxxxxx for the longest time. Intriguing. Oh well - draw a line - draw a line! . . PCd this - at length! . . . ate half a barbeque flavour chicken with four pieces of bread and butter (think I need to be buying that flavour from now on. Very delicious.) and some biscuits. . . napped for a couple of hours . . walked in the rain only wearing a shower coat, and got absolutely totally drenched - although actually, after all the horrible sticky heat of the last few days, it was kinda deliberate although I did misjudge just exactly how heavy the rain was. Got utterly drenched in the torrent. . .changed into dry shorts and drank a glass of red wine . . BB called . . TVd the last in the 'Convent' series. Dunno why, but watching that show (and the similar previous series with the monks) absolutely DID have quite a dramatic impact on my mood. It kinda brought to the fore, all that same sort of spiritual growth stuff I was introduced to, when I was going through my Buddhist/meditational phase, back around the time I had my 'breakdown' and crashed out of work. Impossible for me to put into words here - it'd take far too long - but it's something along the lines of I absolutely DO understand what those people were going through. I've absolutely no time for all the man made 'religions', and yet I really do think I have some understanding of why people are drawn into the monastic/convent kind of life. All this modern day running around, with our TVs, cars, mobile phones, DIY attic projects, etc etc - it's all utter piffle. Meaningless. To push all that to one side - to look deep inside yourself and challenge the frailties and faults that you find there - to endeavour to reveal and explore ones 'true' nature - damn it, dare I say, to strive to be unconditionaly 'loving' - these are important things. I am cursed by a mind that has given me an insight into these things - this way of being. I 'know' some of these things - I know less, how. It is no coincedence I think, that so many religions demand their followers receive counsel from a 'mentor'. One needs to be reminded of the perspective. To give up ones life as it is, and 'submit' to a monastic type of existance - well - I can't help it - I DO find that an attractive proposition (and NO - it isn't about simply hiding away because I'm schizoid - so there!)!! Blah blah blah blah. Yeah - I can't explain this stuff. Suffice it to say, the program reminded me of what is 'important'. Even ended up getting all compassionate for the local yobs (alongside wanting them all shot!) because of course, they are like they are because of their dysfunctional families and upbringing etc, etc. . tickles me when they have a thing on the screen after such potentially emotionaly impacting programs (more usually more 'distressing' subjects) , saying 'If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this program you, can ring the BBC help line' etc, etc. I figure if you HAVEN'T been 'affected' by watching such programs - well - frankly - you're a barbarian, there's little hope for you, and why the hell were you watching it anyway then?!!!!! lol . . . TVd and ate bowls of co-co pops, a choc ice, bananas and chocolate throughout the evening. . TVd/PCd until early. s
6 - Woke real late after 9am. Walked even later, in the rain. That's been a LOT of pretty much continual heavy rain for almost the last 24 hours. Cooler, and 'somewhat' more comfortable, but still pretty warm (especially in full rain gear) . .exchanged a word with the chip shop guy on the way home. Boy - does he have 'the lowdown' on a lot of the local goings on!! . . . received my latest electric bill in the post. Scary. Ok - I know the prices have all gone up - but that's the biggest electric bill I've EVER had! I need to find a way to cut back - although I'm not sure I can much. I already religiously turn off the light in a room as soon as I leave it. I guess all the CCTV and video recorder stuff (and the TV distribution amp.) being on all the time, and constantly re-charging batteries for my twice daily MP3 audio recorder outings, is pushing it up. :o( . . . dabbled in the attic attempting to motivate myself to get on with some of the work. For goodness sake DO something on it - anything!! . oh dear. Oh no! Oh for gods sake!! There was a small patch of damp on one of the floor sheets, where a little of the rain had somehow got into the roofspace and dripped down off the rafter, right below the roof apex!! How the hell is THAT getting in - and why all of a sudden? I sort out one point of water ingress, and another springs up!?? Would you believe it! Damn those roofers! Investigation of the cause of that (probably seperation/shrinkage of the mortar on the ridge tiles - and a possible perferated felt nearby) will have to wait until better weather - and more energy in me! . . Ended up just cutting a small piece of awkward filler rafter and glueing/nailing it in place to set behind the rear chimney stack (been putting that off for ages), before just moving a few things around and then sitting and looking at it all for ages. So - another day with nothing done. :o( I'm having real trouble in getting back down to all the work. I think it's largely to do with the disaster that the attic staircase has turned into, because of all that warping timber! :o( . . . ate lettuce sandwiches mid afternoon, and then a couple of squares of chocolate before napping the rest of the afternoon away until around 5pm. . .the glue had dried on the filler piece of rafter, so I quickly cemented and glued an adjacent bit. Enough cement left over in the bucket to do a bit of the largely cosmetic re-pointing/'cement wash' on a part of the rear chimney stack . . . walked . . . TVd . . BB called . . TVd . . . cooked and ate two large cumberland sausage rings with chips, followed by some biscuits, chocolate and a banana or two . . . TVd until bed around 1am. s
7 - Woke earlier, slept on then up around 9am. Oooh, I do hope Sally is getting into a 'let me sleep on/getting up later' routine at last. . .walked . . .mustered the energy/strength/courage and left Sally at home and drove to Wickes at Longwell Green, for some small (car sized) sheets of plywood (4 x 1220x607x18mm @ 37.96) and yet more wood glue (6.99) intending to start having a go at 're-clading' the attic stairs. Drove on to B&Q to look at their 'toys' before returning to Wickes to buy their cheapest router (29.99) and a set of router bits (9.99). Never used a router before, but I definitely need one to be able to neatly 'round over' the edges of the stairs . . . returned home to read the router instruction booklet, fit a bit and eventually test it out on a piece of scrap wood. Hmm - that'll do - although why does it have an extraction nozzle, cunningly designed to blow all the dust straight into the users face???!!. . . unscrewed all the attic stairs and cut a couple of test steps. Yep -I think that's going to work. . .drove back to Wickes for more plywood (8sheets @ 75.92), some undercoat paint, and nails (12.27). This is costing me a fortune - and because of the size of my car, I have to buy those little plywood sheets, which means a good third of that is wastage!!! . . . worked on the stairs until around 7pm. Yep - I think it's gonna be ok. Should have used plywood in the first place instead of throwing all that money away (well over 100 was it?) on that warping timber! :o( . . walked. HUGE numbers of kids were hanging around at the entrance to the field!! I lost count at 25. . . On the way back out of the field, the group had scored some alcohol, and many of them were drinking. Nearby roadworks barricades had all been moved and placed across the road, shutting the road - complete with a diversion sign, redirecting the traffic up a cul-de-sac!!!!! Kindof amusing, except that the road there is a pretty fast sweeping curve, which made it pretty damned dangerous. Muggins here, felt it worthy of notifying the police non emergency number on his mobile on the way home. I was put on hold. I was kept on hold. I was back at home, feeding Sally, still on hold after nearly ten minutes, when I was finally simply cut off! Grrrrrrrrrr!!!!! I rang again from the 'land line' and kinda forced whoever initialy answered, to take the details and NOT put me on hold again! . . . PS popped round for chats. Before he had a chance to call at the door, I got him in my car and took a trip around by the field. I just wanted to see if the masses of kids were still there (and show him the mayhem) but moreover to see if the 'barricade' was still up across the road. There were only a relatively few kids left, and the barriers had been moved out of the road and put back around the roadworks. I guess the police DID turn up eventually. . . ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter . . . BB called . . chats and TV until early. .LB called by, drunk, with a huge plate of left-overs on a mexican theme apparantly. BB called . . to bed around 2am.s
8 - Woken by Sally around 8:15am. . . walked amidst the beer cans and broken bottles from last night! . . . carried on working on the attic stairs but with an awful headache. Uh oh! I got sawdust in my right eye, kicked up by the circular saw! This is becoming a bit of a habit! It looks as though I'm terribly careless, but its got more to do with the dust I'm always having to work in. I haven't got a pair of glasses (safety or otherwise) that don't seem to attract all the dust all the time, and instantly make it impossible to see through them - so I always work without!!! . . Caved in late afternoon after the last of the gluing and nailing of the new steps. All of them except the first two - because I need to make a decision about whether or not they are going to be fixed. They are currently removeable and allow me to enter the void beneath the stairs when I need to . . . ate some of LBs left overs, but I wasn't keen on much of whatever it was. . TERRIBLE headache. Felt pretty ill. . napped around 5pm. Woken by Sally around 8pm. My eye is still pretty bad!. .walked. Sally chased a rabbit. Unusually passed a couple of police on foot on the way home. .BB called . . . cleared up some of the huge sawdust mess in the attic . . . LB popped in with a couple of frozen thai cakes for a brief chat? LB that is - not the thai cakes. . . did a bit of filler on the attic stairs until around midnight . . .ate pineapple rings and coffee flavoured sponge . . . PCd until early before bed. Damn - that's the second time recently that has happened. As I abruptly 'leapt' out of the PC chair, the spring I fitted beneath the seat, sprung back and forced the whole of the top right off!! The seat is attached to the wheels by a single large shaft - and that shaft is held in place by nothing more than friction - and the spring I've put on, forces the two parts apart when not under load. Left in pieces for attention tomorrow . . couldn't sleep and tossed and turned for ages until birdsong and a hint of light in the sky! aaa
9 - Woken by PS calling around 10am! Blimey - Sally let me sleep on - although, I could happily have slept until gone midday given the chance! . . . walked real late. . .gave Sally the rest of LBs left over mexican meal for her breakfast. She liked it . . . left Sally at home and drove to B&Q at Longwell Green to buy more pollyfilla (4.68), and to have a more serious look at their 'retro' central heating radiators. Suprisingly I couldn't find any leaflets, so I ended up having to stand there for ages and list all the different sizes and BTUs on a piece of paper. Silly really - I'm sure they are all on line somewhere (just checked - yeah they are ). Gonna have to measure up and check the required BTUs and all that jazz, and try and visualise what a couple of those may look like against the firebreasts in the attic. I had planned to put a couple of small, regular radiators against the opposite wall, either side of the stairwell, all covered in with a radiator cover with a shelf on top. But then I saw those retro types and figure maybe - just maybe - a matching pair would look ok against the firebreasts, all fully visible. The added incentive would be that if I DO put them against the firebreasts like that, it would make the actual underfloor pipework SO much shorter and easier to do - and that would offset the higher price - and of course I wouldn't have to buy or build the box-in covers. VERY tempted. I'm a long, LONG way from the 'decorating' stage in the attic, but I HAVE reached a point where further progress demands that I start thinking really carefully about 'the details'. Where I eventually put radiators, partially dictates where I cut-in more power sockets. I can't finish off and plasterboard-over the stud wall at the bottom of the attic stairs until I've worked out where a stair-handrail will go (and a fitted cupboard in the back bedroom, like I built in the front), because I'll need to put in appropriate timber 'noggins' in the stud wall to screw them to. Before I can think about plasterboarding the roof slopes, I need to finalise the lighting (although I have a suspicion, I'm gonna be real old fashioned and just have one dangley light in the middle of the room - in keeping with the rest of the rooms). (I'm a long, LONG way from plasterboarding the slopes - I want (need) to 'alter' each section of the rafter, above every skylight, which is gonna be an absolute bitch to do - in fact I don't really know HOW I'm gonna be able to do what is necessary. On top of that, as was always gonna be necessary because of the sag in the old roof timbers and the way I had to replace the purlins one by one, I'm gonna have to do some massive sort of timber 'shimming' excercise across the rafters/purlins on the inside of both slopes, to try and even-out some of the irregularities and make it appear more straight, and so it can take the plasterboard. Assuming nothing 'bad' happens in the meantime to 'force me out', I really want to reach the shimmed/vapour barrier/plasterboard point before having to face another cold, draughty winter! Uggh.) SO much still to do! :o/ . . . drank a glass of red wine while the oven reheated half a chicken and a stick of garlic bread. Ate with a small tub of coleslaw and mountains of extra butter . . . napped around 4pm. Tossed and turned for ages again, before eventually dropping off. . . woken by BB calling around 8pm!!! . . . TVd. Italy were playing France in the world cup final. Watched just a little. It was 'one all' and gonna be down to penalties when I set off to walk Sally late. Pretty quiet out. :o) . . Italy won apparantly. Typical. I have a bit of a soft spot for France, given my schoolboy French and past bike visits there, so figured I may as well want them to win. Oh well - it's only a game - who cares. (A plane crash and hundreds dead in Russia - forty men, women and children innocent civilians shot dead in Iraq, etc etc. - and the headline story on the radio BBC news as I worked in the attic later, was the football result!! Uhuh.) . . . checked all the nails I'd used on the re-vamped attic stairs and used a hammer and a punch to countersink the handful that were too 'proud'. . BB called . . . mixed up a bunch of filler and applied it all over the attic stairs. . got serious with the 'exploding' PC chair, and used a bit of wet and dry paper to rough up the main shaft before bashing it back in place with the lump hammer and then greasing and reassembling it all. Time will tell . . . PCd this until around 2:30am!! . .TVd and ate bowls of muesli and a couple of bananas before finally to bed at getting on for 4am. d
10 - Woken by Sally at 8:45am. . .walked . . . sanded down the filler on the stairs . . Mum called to touch base . . painted a layer of undercoat on the stairs. . cut my hair . . ate corned beef, cheese, mayo, onion, tomato and lettuce sandwiches with two bags of crisps . . napped for a couple of hours until around 7pm . .PCd briefly . . walked. Passed a couple of kids as I returned home. The minute my back was to them, one of them started calling out 'informer'. I dunno - some days I can ignore it, some days I seem unable to. This day was one of the latter. I turned and began walking after them. The smaller of the two immediately sprinted a short distance ahead and with obviously practiced skill (actually quite athletic and impressive), somehow quickly climbed over where the caretakers garden fence meets the school security fence, and into the school grounds. The other kid carried on and sat on a boulder and I ended up standing right up in front of him ('in his face') saying that if he wanted to get my attention he'd succeeded. He claimed it was nothing to do with him and was the other kid - now taunting me from inside the school fence. I stood at the fence and 'had a bit of a go' at him - gave him my "you know absolutely nothing about me. You have absolutely NO idea what I am capable of doing (to you). You've gotta come out some time. I've got all night!' speech!!! It DID seem to make him hesitate and look a little unhappy - briefly. With the breifest of hesitations as though I WAS going to wait there, I turned and carried on my way - to the accompaniment of more shouts of informer. Oh dear. :o( . . TVd feeling fed up and not very proud of myself after my earlier outburst at the morons. . . BB called . . . TVd. . . . PCd property until early. Ate a couple of pasties with crisps before bed around 2am.
11 - Woken by Sally around 8am . . . walked . . . removed the warped wood from the lower two attic stairs, lifted floorboards and examined how things lay, trying to make a final decision about how I'm going to finish off the lower two steps, and the best way to make an access hatch into the void. Eventually decided it would be real cramped and difficult to use (slitheringthrough like a snake!), but a hatch through the stud wall from the back bedroom is going to be the easiest way to do it - just below the middle of the staircase. The 'preferred' alternative which WOULD afford a much bigger 'doorway', would be to cut through on the higher side of the attic stairs, from inside the fitted cupboard in the front bedroom. Trouble with that is, it would be a HUGE amount of messy work, would require me putting in another lintel, and frankly it would worry me removing any more of those internal supporting walls! Shame though. . . left Sally at home and drove to Wickes for four more lengths of 47 x 100mm x 2.4m timber (14.76). Had a look at the stair handrails and all the fixings. Ouch - they're expensive!! And the number of those I've seen thrown away outside houses being renovated! Damn - knew I should have salvaged them! :o( Hmmmm - I wonder? Now I own a router, I guess it 'should' be possible to just buy some cheap timber and attempt to fashion one myself?. . ate a pasty with two bags of crisps . . worked on modifying/completing the bottom of the attic stairs sub-frame (fixing it to the back bedroom floor joists etc. Until now it's been just hanging from the walls) until late afternoon. Nothing much else I could do until all the glue had set, and with all the floorboards up and barricades in place to stop Sally going through the ceiling, it seemed like a good idea to resist the desire to nap (in an attempt to 'bump' myself back into sleeping at night and being awake during the day. I'd very much begun to slip into a nocturnal state again) and get out of the house for a bit . . set off walking with Sally around 5pm, with a tin of Redbull in my pocket, intending to sit and drink it down by the lake in Eastville Park. . We hadn't been walking long before I came across a dumped Honda C50 motorbike, in the woods by the 'stream'. Abandoned (stolen?) 'clunk'.Ummd and ahhd about whether or not to bother, but I just CANNOT ignore such things, no matter how hard I try. It just isn't right to ignore them! No matter how much everyone else does - it is simply NOT right! Called the local police non emergency number and went through a worse than usual insulting nonsense of being put on hold, questioned as to the reason for my call, put through to another number, put on hold, told I was through to the wrong department, put on hold, etc, etc. After something near eight minutes I was cut off. I rang again - angily ranting at whoever answered! Finally someone relented and was forced to take the details. The most difficult bit of the call (aside from controlling my frustration at how the police make it near impossible to actually call them these days!) was attempting to explain where the bike was, because whoever was on the line didn't have a computer screen with a map! Suprisingly the guy suggested the registration number I'd given was NOT that of a Honda C50! I checked the number plate and confirmed it WAS one of the old fashioned type that you could make yourself with stick on letters and numbers, so I concluded it was probably a false one on a stolen bike. I'd 'done my bit' (again!) and ended my call (strongly suspecting they wouldn't be able to find it, IF they even bothered to look!). . carried on in the direction of Eastville Park. The main road down by the park was all slow moving, congested traffic (slower than walking pace), as usual at that time of day, and stuck in the queue was a police car. I ambled over and told them about the bike, expressing my concerns about how difficult it would be to find (assuming the cops in the car would be familiar with the area and may want to know about it). In very short order, they made it very clear they didn't give a toss, and actually made me feel rather stupid for having bothered them. Ho hum. :o( . . . I had intended to sit on one of the seats by the lake for a while, but there were a few people sat nearby, so I just carried on along the river. . Took the 'path less travelled' and walked along the opposite bank to usual by Snuff Mills, intending to find a quiet spot to sit by the river for a bit. Actually heavy going, with several large trees fallen over on the steep banks, blocking the footpath. . eventually found a quiet place amongst the trees right down by the waters edge, and sat - with Sally laying IN the water for a long while. Sat - and sat - and sat, trying to chill out and let some of the recent 'angst' drift away on the current. Drank my Redbull, smoked my cigarettes and watched walkers passing by, safely distant on the opposite bank. It WAS nicely peaceful - but not for long! I don't beLIEve it!!!!! I go to all those lengths just to find a place to quietly sit for a bit, and as soon as I sit, the police helicopter turns up and ends up circling deafeningly right above me just above the tree tops!!! . . eventually carried on along the path and emerged not that far from PS house. Called him on the mobile as I passed the bottom of his garden, hoping for a coffee stop, but he wasn't in. Back home around 8pm. . . cooked up four cheeseburgers. .BB called . . ate a couple of choc ices . . . TVd until bed at midnight. s
12 - Up around 7am . . .walked and found a penny. . .climbed over the barricades and raised floorboards and PCd this briefly. . soon back to work on the stairs. Cut and glued all the little noggins in place on the subframe. So warm, the glue was pretty much dried in a couple of hours, which enabled me to risk pushing on. .cut the floorboards I'd had to raise, to fit neatly in single runs up to the now permanent stairs, doing away with the patchwork it was before. Left much of the void under the stairs without floorboards as a result. Drilled and screwed the boards in place . . cut up plywood and rounded over the edges with the router and by around 5pm had the final two stairs and three rises all glued and nailed in place (with currently, no access into the void. Damn - forgot to store the two Xmas tree boxes under there). Phew. Thank goodness that's over and done with. . Yikes - almost forgot - again!! Gotta transfer money to BB to help with her plane fare! Raced to ring my bank before it was too late. On hold for a good six minutes before finally getting through, only to be told I'd have to ring a different number for international transfers. Rang it, only to be told they were closed already! Grrrr. . cleared up and then, rushing things rather, mixed up a little filler and applied it to the stairs . . walked. An unusually large aircraft (747 was it?) appeared spectacularly low in the sky in the distance and appeared to land at Filton . . . drank a glass of red wine while the oven cooked a meat pizza with extra onion, tomato, corned beef and cheese heaped up on it, and then ate in front of the TV . . . BB called . .almost fell asleep in my chair as the food sank in, but then managed a 'second wind' and quickly sanded down the filler and slapped some undercoat on the bottom two attic stairs. Wanted to get that done today so it could dry overnight . . exhausted! Sat around for half an hour, on the landing watching the paint dry! Really! lol . . . to bed before midnight. ad
13 - Up at 7am . .PCd a bit of this. I need a 'day off'! I must say, I'm pretty happy with how those attic stairs have finally turned out. They feel 'solid' underfoot - more so than the old original 'main' staircase! . . put laundry on and then walked. Walked the extra in a big detour and checked to see if the 'abandoned' motorcycle was still there. I just needed to know - to know if my call the other day had been ignored and was a complete waste of my time and money. It WAS still there - but now moved along a bit, more the worse for wear, and actually laying in the water in the bed of the stream! It was laying on its side with all the numbers right side up, so I rang my home ansaphone on my mobile and recited the registration, engine and frame numbers. It didn't seem to make sense that it had a false number plate, because there was a full chronology of tax discs scattered around in the bushes. . Dangerpants!put more laundry on and then hung the 'clean'(ish!), out to dry on the rotary clothes line. Shaking my clothes out before hanging them up, to dislodge some of the sawdust and Sally hair (which seems to be a constant on everything I own, clean or not), something flicked (yes - it WAS from my underpants!! lololololol) into my left eye!! Would you believe it! I'd just got my right eye back to normal(ish) after the sawdust attack the other day - now I'm back to square one with watering and rubbing my bloodshot left eye!! Jeeze - so - now I need to wear protective goggles just to hang out the laundry??!!! . Rang my bank and finally transferred some money over to help BB with her plane ticket . rang the police non emergency number determined to get that bike shifted - and also determined to actually make a record of how much nonsense it is trying to call-in such a thing to the police these days. Typical - just because I was all primed to make a record and be all outraged, it actually went unusualy smoothly. (Time of day I guess - wrong doers still abed?). At 09:35.30 my call was answered by an automated system (so I am being charged for the call!) telling me I was in a queue and my call would be answered in sequence. At 09:37.30 I was connected and asked the nature of the call. The call handler said I would be put through to the control room, and I was returned to a ringing tone. Remarkably quickly in my experience, at 09:38.40 I was answered by someone in the control room and was able to make my 'report'. Turns out they DID have it on their system as a C50 under that registration, and it WAS marked up for sometime removal by the council. The woman on the phone seemed happy enough to have yet another call about it (this time I was VERY precise with a detailed description of how to find it) and also humored me by recording the engine and frame numbers. Oh well - that restored just a 'little' bit of my faith in the police I guess. . . PCd this . . . cooked and ate LBs donated thai cakes in sandwiches while watching Judge Judy, followed by biscuits and chocolate for lunch . . .TVd/PCd and ended up eating almost a whole packet of custard creams! . . . napped for a couple of hours until around 7pm but woke feeling oh SO tired, and with a nasty gummy, scratchy, sore eye . .walked . . BB called. . TVd. .ate corned beef sandwiches with two bags of crisps and then squares of chocolate . . . TVd until bed before midnight. ss
14 - Woken around 5am by Sally barking at something or other. . managed to sleep on and then woken around 8am by some weird clanking noise (like banging a central heating radiator) from next door?! . cleared off all the gooey mess from my left eye. Fingers crossed - it feels a 'bit' better. . PCd a bit of this . . . walked and then carried on up Kingswood to bank my compensation cheque and withdraw some cash . . . PCd this. . . TVd . . . ate a tin of stewed steak with four pieces of bread and butter . . . napped for a couple of hours . . . walked. Half way up the top of the field, three young girls who I don't believe I have ever seen before in my life, were sat on the grass in the middle of the field. As I walked up, I thought I heard them 'quietly' chanting "paedo, paedo, paedo" a few times. They quietened down and I dismissed it as my paranoid mind playing tricks on me. I sat on the grass for a cigarette and to watch the sunset at the top of the field (the 'boulders' were out of bounds - occupied by a large group of foul mouthed kids). As I sat there, they started chanting again, and made other 'half heard' abusive comments at me. I tried the 'just ignore it' thing, but that simply saw them get more confident with their abuse! I finished my cigarette and quickly got to my feet to continue my usual route around the field, at which point they ran off down the field, screaming and looking back at me! Deeply distressing. There's only one thing that'll put an end to all this isn't there. Life really has been predominantly shit for me, you know. Not in a big cataclismic way, but in a small incessant, never ending, day by day, grind ya down way - by way of 'people'. I'm f***ing sick of it. I'm f***ing sick of people. Absolutely f***ing sick of them, and absolutely cannot STAND to be around any! I am SO deeply ashamed to be a part of 'people'! :o( . . TVd - miserable. . . BB called . . . ate defrosted chicken sandwiches with crisps, ice cream and chocolate. . . CCTVd mostly, watching moronic drunks passing by, until bed around 1am. s
15 - Woke around 8am . . .walked . . .attended to the top of the main staircase and slightly altered the floorboards to close up some of the gaps, cut a new length or two, and to finally screw them down so they don't 'clank' when walked on. . spent a rediculous amount of time fashioning a couple of plugs from pieces of waste floorboard, to fill the holes in the board that took the central heating pipes when the back bedroom radiator was in its old position. . looked at all the rest of the work to do and - well - just couldn't . . .ate something or other - can't recall what - but followed by squares of chocolate is a fair bet! . . napped . . LB called asking if I was interested in some left overs. Well duh! Popped up LBs and picked up the plate of spaghetti in a weird prawn and other stuff sauce. She wanted me to check my music collection to see if I had any 'Cult', and if so, burn her a CD. .checked the PC and quickly managed to burn her a copy of 'Love' by the Cult - complete with scratches and pops from the record it came from! . . PS popped round for chats, with a film to watch (The Bourne Identity - not a 'bad' film but utterly ruined by the appalling editing of the fight and chase scenes, which actually made it impossible to see what the hell was going on, and who was doing what to who!). He also unexpectedly brought round a duty-free 250g box of Golden Virginia tobacco, bought by his wife and daughter when they returned from a recent foreign holiday. Just under 25 - thank you very much. :o) . . . ate luncheon meat sandwiches and ice cream. . . BB called . . . TVd/PCd until bed around 2am. s
16 - Woke after 9am . . .walked late. Did three carrier bags of 'litter duty' and collected up all the twenty one (yes-I counted!) empty glass beer/gin/etc. bottles littering the place. Too heavy and too much hassle to lug them all the way home to my recycling bin, so I simply relocated them to the burned out bin by the swing frame. So much for re-cycling! And there's the likes of Mum who walks a good half a mile to dutifully re-cycle just a couple of empty jars. Makes a mockery of all that doesn't it. :o( . . tore up some newspaper and put the pieces in a bucket of water to dissolve-ish. I'm experimenting with 'paper mache', with a view to maybe using it to plug the gaps between the old floorboards . . . Mum called to touch base and remind me of the new series of the 'Tribe' program on TV later. . . sanded filler and put a very rough coat of white undercoat paint on the rotten old floorboards at the top of the main stairs. Silly and pointless really, but it does make those rough damaged boards look just a 'little' better, and makes it easier to keep them clean during the works. Psychological mostly - all part of that needing to make everything the same colour before I can 'see' it - makes me feel as though I'm making 'progress', even if I'm not . . . did 'some' of the mountain of dish washing chores . . . ate LBs donated spaghetti with three pieces of bread crusts and butter, and then some chocolate. . .watched part of the French Grand Prix but found it SO boring, eventually gave up and lay down to nap . . . woke around 6pm. . . walked . . .TVd and watched the 'Tribe' program. Fascinating - and rather depressing. African tribesmen with hardly any posessions - but all sporting AK47s and at war with all surrounding tribes! When oh when will the human race wake up and realise it IS doomed, unless it actively reduces its population? Seems to me just SO obvious, overpopulation is absolutely key to all the worlds problems! . . . ate luncheon meat and lettuce sandwiches. . BB called . . .TVd . . . PCd property until bed around 1am. sa
17 - Woken by Sally just before 7am . . .drove with Sally to Conham at Hanham and walked our usual circular route along the river, up and back through the woods. Sat at our usual spot in the woods for absolutely ages, sipping from a bottle of water and smoking multiple cigarettes. Wonderfully cool in the wooded shade. I could sit still and quiet in such a spot for hours and hours with what many would consider absolutely nothing happening, and not get bored. It's back to that tendency toward 'sensory overload' thing isn't it. For me - when it comes to nature, and a woodland environment in particular, there's LOTS going on, all around, all the time! Wonderful environment for me. Calming. Funny how the mind wanders when sat around like that. It suddenly seemed perfectly reasonable (except having to consider BB and such) to withdraw all my savings, buy a plot of wooded land somewhere (and maybe also even a cheap camper van), and go and live on it! To hell with planning permission and all that stuff. I can 'rough' it. Who'd even know I was there? As long as there was a water source - it'd be do-able. I could play at making myself a 'shelter', with a fire for cooking - and maybe even get clever with a solar panel or two! It just seemed SO do-able all of a sudden! . . I spotted it before Sally did. Just up along the path from where we were sat, a small fox had stopped dead in its tracks and was just stood there looking at us. Beautiful. Managed to slip the lead over Sally's head before pointing it out to her. By the time I managed to ease my camcorder out of my 'belt pack', and predictably before I got it turned on, it was off - nervously trotting away into the undergrowth, off the path below us. The birds saw it too. Even though it was quickly lost to our sight, it was possible to follow its route in the undergrowth by way of the danger calls from the birds, some of which actually flitted from branch to branch following it, all the while chattering their danger signal. I eventually let Sally off her lead to race off and have a good sniff at the path and brambles, the way it had gone. I kept a watch on the birds and was rewarded by seeing the oh so skinny little fox, cross over the path a little distance away before disappearing once again into the 'bush'. Wonderful. Wonderful, wonderful. Eventually carried on with the walk, deliberately coughing and scuffing my feet as we passed parallel with where the fox was still hidden in the undergrowth, to make sure it wouldn't be suprised by Sally. . Free to bedid a spot of 'fishing' on the way back alongside the river. Well - MY version of fishing that is. Sit on the bank next to the river and just watch the water until you SEE a fish (nothing gets hurt or tortured that way, and you don't have to lug all that equipment around). Turned out to be a very good days fishing - I 'caught' at least a dozen - or maybe even two, all about eight inches in length. :o) . . . managed to put in some work on the building site, despite the heat and floods of sweat pouring off me, and spent a HUGE amount of time cutting up a few small pieces of brick with the disc cutter, to cement in to the awkward space at the top corner of the stairs wall, where it meets the ceiling/attic floor. finished off around 6pm by hacking off some of the old render on the same wall, in preparation for eventualy replastering 'some' of it. Big dusty mess . . .set off to walk in the stifling heat just after 7pm. Only got a few yards down the road before having to check to see why my foot felt weird. Turned out my left training shoe was completely split across the sole, through and through! Yet another pair bites the dust. Sheesh - I get through some shoes! My main, comfortable, ex-army walking boots are nearing the end of their life already - splits have appeared on some of the creases. :o( Briefly returned home for replacements. Walked and brought a large empty water bottle home (litter), as a replacement for the one I keep for use in the car for Sally. Carried on walking and treated myself to a kebab and chips . . . TVd and ate . . . BB called . . . ate ice cream and chocolate and TVd until early to bed before 11pm. s
18 - Woke around 5am, back to sleep and then upwith the noise of people putting their bins out around 6:15am . . . walked early. Blimey - really hot and sweaty already!! Too hot really for 'binman aerobics', but with the 'coast clear' of kids, filled up a handful of carrier bags of mostly plastic drinks bottles. Funny how the litter has its own story about the time of year and other 'social' things - like the predominance of silver Lambert And Butler packs of ten cigarettes. I smoke roll ups so have no idea how much cigarettes are these days, but PS suggested the local kids are smoking those because they are some of the cheapest. (The whole of the adult population of course, smokes duty free imports!) . .PCd this with the fan on. Funny coincedence after my quiet sit in the woods yesterday - I received some feedback from the site offering some advice and suggestions, which included - "for peace of mind.  I would consider anything eg buying woodland and living illegally on it in a hut etc ". lol :o) I've had this link on my site for several years now (Woodlands For Sale) and DO occasionaly look and dream, usually whenever I put here that I've 'surfed property'. Realisticaly - I guess I haven't the nerve - and after all, what the hell does an ageing 'city boy' know about 'managing' a woodland?!! Zip! Also - difficult to explain, but, whatever happens in the future - wherever I end up - I'm gonna have to be VERY sure I can mentally handle whatever lead up to that. If I end up stuck in a place I hate, penniless and or homeless, as a result of being forced out of my house, my home by anti social yobs - well - I'm liable to end up miserable (even more so) bitter and twisted (to say the least!) and could easily end up shooting people at random from a clock tower!! What a world. I'm 'lost' in it, in a way I've never been before. :o( . . .sat around being hot. Too damned hot for any DIY. Too damned hot for doing anything! . . sat around/TVd/PCd the day away . . cooked up a frying pan full of eight small burgers, and ate them all in four buttered bread rolls late afternoon . . . lay down in the heat and managed to nap . . . woken by Sally needing to use the garden with her latest stomach upset, real late after 8pm!!!!! . . BB called . . . walked after 9pm. I'm not sure I can recall it being SO hot at such a late hour! . . .hosed down the garden and sat on the patio trying to be cool - and largely failing. . .PCd property/woodland. lol . . . BB called . . . TVd. Ate luncheon meat and mayo sandwiches with two bags of crisps, a dish of ice cream and some chocolate in the early hours, before eventually to bed after 2:30am. The local BBC TV news weather forecast amused me. The headline forecast for tomorrow was - and I quote - "Unbelievably hot!". I think they are suggesting that locally it may break the all time record, set back in 1976. ss
19 - Woken by Sally needing to use the garden with her upset stomach, pretty much every two hours - no - less than that actually!!! Hardly any sleep at all. Uggh! . . gave up the idea of attempting to get back to sleep and stayed up after Sally'd woken me yet again around 6am. .hosed down the garden . . . set off around 7am and drove with Sally in the car down to Conham on the river Avon before the heat got unbearable, and pretty much did a replay of our walk of the 17th. Sat quietly at 'our' spot in the cool woods with my shoes off, for a good hour or more, and was rewarded by seeing much birdlife, squirrels, and a brief appearance by what I think was the very same fox. :o) A couple of guys on mountain bikes crashing along the trail seemed like my cue to call it quits. Back home around 9:30am - and already very uncomfortably hot. . . PCd this before it gets too hot to dare to turn the machine on . . . stripped off the remaining wallpaper from the stairs/corridor wall and put on a coat of PVA before caving in, in the heat. I just can't face doing anything in these sort of temperatures Temperature - conservatory / patio-in-shade. . . TVd . . ate luncheon meat, mayo, cheese, onion, tomato and lettuce sandwiches with two bags of crisps . . . TVd/PCD/sweated! . . the temperature seemed to peak somewhere around 2pm and I moved the radio controlled clock with the digital thermometer out into the shade of the patio, to see if it really was as stiflingly hot as it felt. In the conservatory the old 'greenhouse' type thermometer (I once salvaged from a skip) was showing 110 degrees F!!! It felt like it, and of course contributed to the rest of the house feeling unpleasantly hot. Out on the patio in the small area that is in permanent shade, adopted by Sally as 'her' spot, it peaked at 97.7 degrees!! In short - 'scorchio'! Too hot for my liking. . . walked around 7:30pm. As I set off, a cloud front sneaked in front of the sun, immediately making things just a little more bearable. . . BB called briefly . . . TVd . . . cooked and ate four cumberland sausages in two bread rolls, some chocolate and ice cream as a brief splattering of unexpected rain fell . . . TVd until bed at midnight. s
20 - Woken by Sally needing the garden just after 6am . . .PCd this . . .walked and found a penny . . . started the re-build up of the stairs wall in the 'attic corridor' and slapped on some plaster. Cut, fixed and cemented in place, some edge bead on the awkward stairs corner . . ate a couple of bowls of corn flakes and lay down to nap mid afternoon . . woken by Sally only an hour or so later needing to use the garden again with her upset stomach, which seems to be dragging on rather this time. :o( . . cut and glued in place some noggins in the stud wall adjacent to the attic stairs, to eventually support the plasterboard. I'm actually not 'that' far from being able to fit the last sheet of plasterboard to finally close off that end of the wall around the stairs, but the problem is, I don't have any plasterboard left. Pretty much one single sheet would do the job there, but I have no means of transporting the thing back from the DIY store - it's just too big (and fragile) to go in the car. Dunno how to get around that! I think I'm gonna have to give it a go at buying a sheet and then trying to cut it up into car sized chunks in the DIY store's car park!!!!! I'm putting that off because it's gonna be real awkward, is unlikely to be successful - and I'm gonna find it real embarassing. :o( . . . walked . . . stopped for sausage and chips takeaway on the way home . . . BB called . . . TVd and ate chocolate and biscuits until bed around 12:30am. s
21 - Up around 7am . . .walked . . . drove to Wickes at Longwell Green and returned the two pieces of 'surplus to requirements' plywood, and stocked up on bags of plaster, PVA and more wood glue, etc. Only 9.96 after the 18.98 credit on the returned plywood. :o) Drove on to Asda and shopped for groceries - and chocolate and ice cream - 34.48. . cooked and ate four quarter pound beef burgers in bread rolls . . . slept all afternoon . . .walked and found another hoop earring. . . LB popped by and gave me a plastic tub of new potatoes to try (as I'd requested) from her allotment! . . . PS popped round for chats and brought another DVD to watch. 'Into Perdition' I think it was called. Engaging, with some very striking scene sets. .ate biscuits, Brussel pate sandwiches with a bag of crisps and then some ice cream. . . TVd/PCd. Didn't feel at all tired and ended up somehow staying up all night!! s
22 - Ended up still awake approaching the time to walk Sally, and eventually just stayed up and walked her early around 6am. . .finally to bed and fitfully slept until around midday . . . did more plaster 'undercoat' build up of the wall at the bottom of the attic stairs, and then did the final noggins (for the stair rail) in the stud wall opposite. . . spent absolutely ages scraping all the potatoes LB had donated . . .ate a banana to keep me going and then walked. Still very hot but a much nicer cooling breeze. . . drank a glass of red wine while cooking up all LBs donated potatoes. Ate almost all of them with half a chicken and huge amounts of butter. Not bad. :o) . . BB called . . . drank the last of the bottle of wine and then ended up applying a little filler to the floorboards in the corridor to the attic. . . TVd eating choc ices and chocolate until bed around midnight. dd
23 - Up at 6:30am with a headache. Annadin, coffee and cigarettes for breakfast. .PCd a bit of this . . walked. Exchanged a few words with some dog walkers. A while ago when I had a call from the local beat manager policeman, he mentioned in passing that the local schools liason officer had a broken ankle. According to one of the dog walkers - it happened on the last day of school for the 'older' kids. According to her - they were all fueled up on drink and drugs, and they had attacked him and broken his ankle in the process!! She said the official police line was that he was injured whilst apprehending someone!! Jeezuz! :o( . . touched base with Sis1 and confirmed she still wants supplies of firewood for her winter open fire (and preferably in foot long lengths!). . . sorted out a bit in the attic and then moved the large amount of warped 'failed staircase' timber (!) down and out onto the patio. Used the circular saw and a hatchet to cut up the timber into more or less foot long pieces and filled up around eight sacks full . .Mum called briefly . . drove to Sis1s and dropped off the firewood and had a look at her bathroom and porch building sites. Tried as hard as I could not to be 'too' critical, but it was really easy to be so. She's had loads of hassles with the 'jerry' workmen who've messed up her new bathroom (she's refused to pay them - and I think they've even accepted they aren't going to seek payment, the workmanship is SO bad), and it really was just THE most awful mess of substandard nonsense I've ever seen! Even a slapdash DIYer like me would have come up with a better result! As for her porch - well - it's huge! Far too big (I'm sure that would have needed planning permission, I don't care what they say!), frankly ugly, and I have a strong suspicion THAT isn't being done 'right'. E.g. - I could see no sign of any wall ties at all, tying it in to the house - and the inner wall insulation appeared to me a mix of left over bits and pieces, some with a silver vapour barrier, some without!!! Came away feeling pretty up tight about it all, myself! No wonder Sis1 is in a bit of a state about it all! If only I had the energy to have a go at it all for her (and she'd happily pay me) - but I just can't. :o( . . did laundry. . .touched base with Mum and gave her MY opinion of Sis1s troubles. . .BB called . . . ate Brussel pate sandwiches with two bags of crisps. . .TVd . . . sanded and painted undercoat on the runs of floorboards up to the attic stairs. . . walked . . . Mum called to let me know the details of Sis2s flights . . . ate four Cumberland sausages and the rest of LBs potatoes with much butter. . . TVd/PCd until early before bed. aaa
24 - Up at 8am . . . walked and found a penny. . . cut my hair . . just couldn't face doing anything and sat around/TVd . . . ate half a chicken, most of a tub of coleslaw and four pieces of bread and butter for lunch, followed by too much chocolate . . . slept the afternoon away until 5pm . . . Sis1 called to touch base and ask if I was interested in giving her and her friend a lift somewhere and back, on Saturday (for money!). Not sure I want all the hassle - which would have to include trying to de-sawdust/Sallyhair the inside of the car! . . PCd a bit of this . . .walked and walked the extra and popped in the store for a birthday card and token gift box of chocolates for mum, and a four pack of Red Bull drinks for the drive. . . quickly gave the car a bit of a vacuum, to try and remove the layers of Sally hair, cigarette ash and sawdust . . . Sis2 called from Mums to confirm she'd already arrived . . . loaded the car up, locked up the house and eventually hit the road around 8pm. Stopped for petrol (15.48ltrs @ 15). .a smooth, not 'too' hot run down, and as I'd hoped, without much traffic. Took it easy and experimented with different ways of driving, and ended up taking my shoes off (as I drove!) and driving in my socks! Even sat kinda cross legged (one leg at a time) for some of the journey!! Not very safe, but eased some of the aches in my legs and back. . . arrived at Mums somewhere around 10pm and unloaded everything into the garage . . . coffee and chats until early, before retiring to sleep with Sally in the garage after 1am. Must be a lot less light pollution down there - amazing, star filled sky. a
25 - Pretty poor nights sleep. . woken by Sally around 7am. . . walked down to Battery Gardens and then cut up past the holiday chalets and did the long walk through the woods. . things have changed in the woods. The big fallen tree that I usually sit on has been cut up into something like six foot lengths, and the lengths have been buried upright in the ground, in a small circle in the middle of the path, with a weird wooden carved bowl like structure in the centre! Faces have been carved into each of the uprights! Like some sort of pagan henge, or withces circle!!! Yucky. Why oh why oh why do people insist on f***ing everything up like that? Why couldn't they have just left it unspolied and natural? Feels like the peaceful ambience of that place has now been destroyed by that man made intrusion. Sat nearby and had a cigarette anyway, trying to accept it. High up on the trees all around the clearing, more carved, gargoil like faces looked down. Horrible. Pointless. If I lived down near there - I think I'd even be tempted to vandalise it! Hope someone does! . .carried on with the walk out onto Churston Cove (people camping just off the beach). . hesitated on the cliff path and watched the oldish dog walker with the two lurchers, who'd passed me with a polite good morning in the woods. He walked straight down the beach with his dogs, to the waters edge - and then just kept walking! It appeared to be his usual morning routine. Straight into the water until he was swimming - with both dogs swimming along with him, and one in particular swimming around and around him in cirles as he went. They all actually swam out some distance and appeared to be making for a moored yacht, but as they approached the yacht pulled anchor and sailed off. They eventually swam all the way around to Fishcombe Cove and were just emerging from the water as Sally and I reached the beach! Blimey - that's some dog walk they do!! . . . sat around in the garden drinking coffee and chatting all day. . napped for maybe an hour or so in the oven hot garage. Headachey. . .the usual 'discussions' (arguing!) about where we should go to eat for Mums birthday meal. The complication seemed to be, Mum wanting somewhere we could take Sally (and although I said it didn't matter, I wasn't too happy about the prospect of leaving her behind, because the garage was hot like an oven!). I didn't help the arguments because quite frankly, I really, REALLY didn't want to have to go out and be amongst people - and particularly not to have to go to a pub to eat, as Mum had suggested! :o/ . . eventually all got in the car and headed off around 6pm. Stopped off at Battery Gardens and walked around until Sally had 'done her business'. Oh NO!!! Would you believe it! Sally's stomach is still not quite right, and somehow when she popped, she managed to cover herself with it, all in her fur around her back legs! Worse than she's ever done! Typical!! Right when we were just about to take her in somewhere and eat! Had to do a frantic dash along the coastal path and down to one of the slipways so she could 'have a wash'. Cool dog. Didn't take much persuading for her to paddle in and then lie down in the gently lapping waves. . Left the car parked where it was and all walked along the coastal path down to the hussle and bustle of Brixham harbour. . some more umming and ahhing about where to eat but eventually ended up on the upper floor of a cafe where Mum and Sis2 have eaten before, where dogs were welcome (which is very nice for me, but which seems quite incredible in this day and age, on health and safety grounds!?). The waitress was Polish (is there anyone left in Poland? How can this country possibly accomodate all these EU migrants? Who's next into the EU? Bulgaria is it? I guess the whole population of Bulgaria will be moving here next!!!) on her first day working there - very pleasant but didn't seem to know what breadcrumbs were, so Mum had her fish in batter. Ate a large plate of cod and chips, overlooking the harbour, with Sally (wet) laying down next to us having the odd tit bit. . Embarassing as we left! Sally pulled on ahead of me as we picked our way out past the tables, and then proceeded to have a damn good shake, right next to a family eating their meal!!!!! I didn't look back and made a hasty exit! . . . sat on a seat overlooking the harbour while eating a double scoop coffee ice cream . .eventually walked away from the crowds (oh thank god!!!!!) back up to Battery Gardens to sit on a seat and chat for ages before eventually returning to the car. Drove around through the harbour area, sight seeing a little (tremendous sunset) before driving back to Mums. . . more garden sitting and coffee and chats. BIG explosions from some firework display, maybe in Paignton, around 10pm. Couldn't see them from Mums garden. Shame we hadn't stayed down on the seat with the view for a bit longer. . . TVd and at Mums suggestion, ended up inflicting some of my 'music videos' on Sis2. She never did get round to actually watching them when I sent them to her in Bahrain, because she was worried they may have detrimentally affected her laptop!. . . eventually to the garage to bed after 1am. aa
26 - Woken by Sally around 7:30am. . . walked . . sat in the garden and chatted all day . .ate corned beef sandwiches with pickled onions and crisps for lunch . . napped a little . . ate salmon, cheese, potatoes, b&b etc. for tea. Finished off the meal by sharing the box of Milk Tray I'd given to Mum for her birthday. I made the mistake of chewing the last of the ones I had, which was the toffee. All of a sudden, the loose tooth that's been wobbling around in my mouth for ages (the one that was hurting, that the dentist said I should have out, but which I'd insisted I should keep for as long as possible) suddenly became apparant in my mouth full of toffee!!!!! Stuck in the toffee, it'd been pulled clean out!!!!!!!!!! No pain at all, and it didn't even bleed!!!!! How weird is THAT! Oh well - one less to worry about - again. . . walked Sally with Sis2 down to Battery Gardens and back . . . all watched the 'Penguins' DVD Sis2 had recommended and that Mum had rented from her local store. Jeeze - do those penguins have a tough life! All seems so incredibly fragile! Won't take much more of mans' selfish activities to make them extinct, I bet! . . Getting on for midnight before I headed off to the garage. Felt all awake and ended up sitting in the dark in the garden for quite a while before eventually laying down to try and sleep.
27 Looking out over Torbay from Battery Gardens, Brixham Tossed and turned, tossed and turned, up and down, up and down. A REALLY bad night with hardly any sleep at all! Eventually woken somewhere around 7am by the young seagull 'whistling' incessantly until it'd flown down into the garden for its drink. . All walked Sally down to Battery Gardens somewhere around 9am. Much sitting on seats looking out over Torbay . . . eventually back to Mums for yet more sitting around in the garden chatting. Had a bit of a dabble with Sis2s laptop while still sat out in the garden. Laptops are very cool. . briefly spotted the Red Arrows aerobatic team in the sky. . napped for maybe an hour . . . walked and then fed Sally. She left a little in her bowl uneaten, so that ended up getting put up on top of the garage roof so the seagull with the bad leg (Mums friend) could eat it. . . eventually loaded everything into the car, hugs goodbye, and on the road around 8:45pm. . a pretty smooth drive back home, with rather more traffic on the roads than when I went down. . someone had a firework display going on somewhere near Weston-Super-Mare, RIGHT next to the motorway!! That shouldn't have been allowed!! 'Distracting' isn't the word. More worrying. The colourful explosions weren't very much higher than the level of the carriageway and the traffic actually had to drive through the smoke!!! . . back home around 10:45pm. Blimey - it's still there - intact!! . . Opening the door of the house I was hit by a 'solid' wall of heat!! Wow - incredibly hot (80+F) and SO stuffy! Unloaded everything from the car, got Sally back in and supplied with fresh water, and then raced around all over the house opening every single skylight and window. Took around half an hour for the temperature to drop by around ten degrees . . BB called briefly . . touched base with Mum and confirmed safe arrival . .ate the Mum donated pork pie with two bags of crisps . . . BB called . . . unwound in front of the TV for a bit and ate a couple of bowls of co-cop pops . . . soon to bed, exhausted. a
28 - Up around 8am. I needed that sleep - and could use a bunch more! . . . walked and did a couple of carrier bags of 'litter duty'. . . bit the bullet ( I HAD to - I just couldn't stop 'rehearsing' it in my mind all the time!) , put a new blade in my Stanley knife, grabbed the tape measure and whatever else I thought I may need, left Sally at home, and drove to Wickes (after I got the car going! It wouldn't start at first - so I pushed it down the street to at least be outside the house - then suddenly it decided to start!?) at Longwell Green for the large sheet of plasterboard to finish off the stud wall. Oooh, ooh, ooh - the car park was unusually empty. Parked in a space in such a way that I blocked the space next to it, and then went in and bought the plasterboard (2400x1200x12.5mm @ 5.26). Back out to the car park and lay the sheet flat on the tarmac next to the car and pretty quickly managed to cut it in half lengthways with the knife and the straight edge I'd taken. HOT work in the scorching sun! . Yippeeee!! The two pieces 'just', JUST managed to actually fit fully inside the car from dash board to hatch back with the passenger seat layed as flat as it would go, with the headrest removed. That was more painless than my mental rehearsals had envisaged it would probably have been. :o) Back home and successfully unloaded without snapping the two pieces, and with what appears to be the minimum amount of damage to the edges. EXCELLENT! Drank a quick bottle of water and then drove back to the store for some more plasterboard screws (3.19) and one more big roll of fibreglass insulation (18.29). Briefly stopped for a bottle of milk on the way home at the new 'local-ish' store that's been open for a while. Blimey - open 7 days a week, from 7 till 11, and a pretty large selection of stuff! That 'may' be useful. The 'staff-wanted' sign on the doors advertising for an 'evening supervisor' got me thinking - but not 'too' much. Almost tempting though. Pretty local - and god knows I could use the money. . .thank goodness THAT is over and done with. Buying and transporting that big bit of pasterboard to enable me to 'finish' off that stud wall had become a real mental block. Not in the mood to do the work at the moment, but at least now I can, whenever I want. Very pleased. :o) . . PCd just a bit of this. I think I need to just sit around quietly for a bit - to 'recover' from all that sitting around and chatting of the last couple of days!!. . . sat around/TVd/PCd/tidied up a bit. . . ate a couple of chicken and vegetable pastry pies . . .walked and found a dog choke chain. . . couldn't resist and ended up having a bash at putting up the awkward bits of plasterboard on the stud wall. I'm not much good with plasterboard. I hate the stuff. Big struggle and rather a patchwork of little pieces around the attic stairs, but had it all in place by around 11:45pm. Took a bit of a liberty and was still hammering around 11pm, but because the neighbours appeared to be out. . . grabbed a chicken and vegetable pastry pie with a bag of crisps and then some ice cream before collapsing exhausted into bed around 1:30am. a
29 - Up around 8am again . . . walked . . .PCd just a bit of this. Transferred over the little bit of video I'd done at Mums and had a go at doing something with it. Didn't really sneak enough, but somehow I managed to cobble together a little token video of us all sat on one of the seats overlooking Torbay at Battery Gardens, set to Dock O' The Bay. :o) That took all morning and gave me a pounding headache!! . touched base briefly with Mum/Sis2 . . ate Brussel pate sandwiches with two bags of crisps and some chocolate in front of the TV before laying down to nap the rest of the afternoon away . . . woken by Sally around 7pm . . . walked in a hint of drizzle. . . TVd . . . BB called . . . put a few dabs of filler on the stud wall . . cooked and ate four cheeseburgers and then some chocolate, ice cream and biscuits . . . TVd until bed around 1am. as
30 - Woken by Sally around 7:30am. . . walked and did a bunch of carrier bags of litter duty. I know I shouldn't get all 'attached' to clearing up the litter over the field, but during the school summer holidays, it is 'almost' possible to actually make an impression on it and keep the field pretty clear (relative!). Found a small yellow rubber duck with a squeaker. lolol . . . PCd this . . .oops! Ended up not moving and PCing the entire day away messing around with the old audio tape Mum had let me have. A poor audio tape of an even poorer, scratched 78rpm record, of Mum and Dad's wedding ceremony, together with a small photo album!! Committed the audio to the PC and then spent hours and hours trying (and largely failing) to remove some of the scratches and noise, and generally improve the quality, to at least 'mostly' audible. Weird strangely emotional feelings listening to that 'ancient' recording over and over. I've reached a point in my life where I have absolutely NO time whatsoever for any man made religions, and precious little time for those who do (just look at the mess they're making of the world!) , but there was something about that old ceremony and the old fashioned authoratative way the minister delivered it that got to me a bit. It/he made it easily understood how comforting, such rituals and beliefs could once have been. Weird. . Finally gingerly dismantled the photo album and got all that scanned in by around 7pm! What the hell I can do with it all now is a whole nother matter?!. . .walked and found 5p. Some guy walking a little friendly bull mastiff type of dog (is that what they are? You know - the type that everyone seems to want as a fashion accessory these days! Grrr. ) came over and asked if I knew who's dog it was!?? Apparantly he'd found it running loose and'd had it a couple of days now. That seemed particularly stupid to me and I suggested he'd be best to hand it in at Staple Hill police station for them to hand on to the council dog warden (microchip checks, etc), because anyone having lost it would surely be frantically calling the dog warden/police etc. He said he HAD put some notices in a couple of shop windows! What a burk! Well - all I can say is, if I ever lose Sally (heaven forbid! I'd be distraught beyond imagining!), I hope she doesn't end up 'hiding out' with him! . . cooked and ate a pizza with extra cheese and onion . . . BB called . . . PS popped round for chats, TV and biscuits until early. . Yayyy. He'd brought round his mobile phone for me, as I'd suggested he might, because his daughter had upgraded her phone (again - as kids so often have to these days! Sheesh) and they'd all swapped phones in a 'knock on' way, and now had that one surplus. He suggested I could give him 10 for it, so I did - and now have a 'fancier' phone. A silver Sagem MYC4-2 - a tiny little 'clam' type (although I think I prefer an old 'brick' type myself), with a low res. camera on board, all with the box etc! Only thing missing was the instruction manual. . . PCd until around 2am, tracking down and grabbing a copy of the operating manual for the phone. as
31 - Woken by Sally around 7:15am. . . walked. . . spent a ridiculous amount of time out on the patio in a hint of drizzle, attempting to cut up thin slivers of bricks with the disc cutter to fit in the awkward gap between the attic floor joists and the top of the wall next to the attic stairs. I'm pretty sure, no matter what I do, once that area is plastered, it'll develop a crack in the plaster along the top of those bricks, where things will be expanding and contracting at different rates. Nothing much I can do about that I suspect, but I tried my best and eventually cemented in the bricks with huge amounts of PVA adhesive on everything. . . ate Brussels pate sandwiches with two bags of crisps and then some biscuits. . . slept through until woken by Sally after 6pm . . . walked . . . BB called briefly. . vacuumed and tidied up just a little, trying to maximise the amount of rubbish in my bin. I've gotta re-read those leaflets to find out when it starts, but it won't be long before the council only empties that bin once a fortnight, and expects the other small brown bins they've provided, to be used for food waste and recyclable stuff instead. Trouble with that idea for me is, I don't have any food waste, I already put anything compostable into that old dustbin on the corner of the garden, I already put all the tins and bottles in the recycle bin - so - I don't really know what else I'm supposed to do! Ridiculous that despite all these new arrangements, they STILL aren't accepting plastic drink containers in the doorstep recycling collection. If you want to recycle those, you have to make a special journey somewhere far away!! With my knowledge of rubbish from doing all this crazy litter duty stuff over the field, I can confidently suggest that the majority of bulky land fill waste these days is precisely that - plastic drink/milk containers! Just look at all the hedgrows and rivers - everywhere! They need to address THAT - urgently - and not faff around with 'food' waste - which in my opinion, with starving people all over the world still - simply shouldn't exist!! If you ain't gonna eat it - don't buy or cook it, fatso! :o/. . . TVd . . . suddenly felt really unwell. REALLY unwell, and ended up all hot and cold sweats and nauseaus. Somehow ended up laying on the floor of the conservatory by the open patio door for the fresh air (drizzley) - and was eventually sick out the back door onto the patio!!!! :o( . . . TVd/PCd until early, feeling real rough. I've also noticed of late, that my 'emotions' (such as they are!!) seem to be swishing about a bit nearer the surface than usual. I've had a 'welling up' and had to fight back tears on a handful of occasions of late. While watching several TV shows - while dabbling with that Mum and Dad wedding tape - and of course while watching all the daily horrors reported on the news. There was one particular segment of news footage about the Israel/Lebanon outrage (that the world 'community' is just sitting by and watching happen - or dare I say even encouraging, for political reasons way beyond my understanding! I used to think the UN had a noble purpose. No more. :o( ) which highlighted the pollution of the surrounding seas, caused by the bombing of a fuel storage depot. HUGE oil slicks, laying waste to everything. They showed a close up of a small crab - stood in a slick of oil - covered in oil - frantically trying to clean itself, with the dainty movements of it's legs. Hopeless. Powerful painful image - I had to turn over real quick. :o( . . . eventualy felt just a 'little' better and ate bowls of co-co pops and choc ices until eventually to bed before 3am. s