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1 - Up around 7:10am. . .walked. Retrieved an England flag from the skip down the road! Actually, I AM showing tremendous restraint with that skip. There’s a single pine bed in there I’ve managed to resist (but mostly because I’m sure all the screws and bolts wouldn’t be there). . . TVd and ended up watching more on the news channel about the hurricane in the US. Wow – WHAT horror – made more so by all the looting and such! And then there was that stampede in Iraq yesterday where hundreds were killed!! There's something about people getting killed in a 'stampede' (women and children in particular) which I find utterly, utterly 'disgusting'! Animal behaviour. Incomprehensible to me. :o( Life is SO fragile – and seems like civilised behaviour is even more so! :o( . . . put laundry on and then PCd this. The England flag came up nice and clean and like new :o) (made in China for goodness sake!) . . . Mum called to touch base . . . TVd and sat around feeling tired . . .ate a bunch of chocolate biscuits and then had to go back to sleep! . . . woke mid afternoon. Put in a couple of hours in the attic wiring in a temporary light switch near the access ladder, rather than awkwardly on the opposite side of the room (near the old hatch) as it has been up till now. I've had a bunch of spare fluorescent light strips and the plastic difuser for the strip light carefully stored up in that attic for the last ten years or more (all legitimately salvaged from Small Street Post Office when it closed and was abandoned, and Dad had the keys). Even managed to keep them all intact throughout all the work I've been doing. Turns out they were all the wrong size for the light I have!! Smashed them all up and put them in the bin. . . walked. Debated for a while then went ahead and put in a call to the local police and reported a car that appeared to have been abandoned round the corner. Frontal damage and expired tax. I've learned from experience that if it sits there for just a day or two, the local yobs will spot it too and start smashing it up. Stopped off at the chip shop for a cod and chips takeaway on the way home. . .TVd . . . BB called. . . sat in the garden . . TVd . . . ate chocolate and bowls of co-co pops before to bed around midnight. pas
2 - Woken by Sally before 7am. . .walked - actually rather interested to see what may have become of the car I'd reported last night. It was still there, with a police fixed penalty type notice (like a red rag to a bull for the local yobs) affixed to the now, smashed windscreen! . . . put in just a little work in the attic and decided to cement up a couple of verticals to aim for, on the wall between the firebreasts. As much as anything else, an excuse to use up a bunch of cement - so I could use the cement mixer for the first time. Needed to get on and use it, because never having used one before, it was beginning to be something of a mental block for me getting on with stuff. Dunno how you are supposed to use one, but I threw in a bucket of sand, about a third of a bucket of cement (the bucket I got from that guys skip :o) ) and then set the thing mixing and very soon squirted some water from the hose in. Seemed to go ok. Got splattered a bit (me, the patio doors, the walls and much of the patio!) as the cement flopped around inside - and then it all mostly stuck to the sides of the mixing bowl, so I stopped it and had a scrape around in there with my trowel. Blimey. Good to go I think. That was easy - apart from all that splatter everywhere!! Tipped most of it out as it revolved and then stopped it and scraped the last out with the trowel. Immediately put in the time to hose it all down and clean it out, before heading up into the attic with the heavy bucket. Cemented up the verticals-ish! Close enough to vertical to give me something to aim for with building up the rest of the wall, and particularly vital for working out how deep to mount power sockets etc. . . cleaned up and watched a bit more of the hurricane horror on the TV. Something about the way that George Bush always smiles whenever he says anything, irritates the hell out of me and makes me believe he's just in it for - um - his own gain kinda. . . carried the last half dozen big chipboard floorboards up into the attic, just to get them out of the way and let me have my 'usual' living room back. Vacuumed up all the resulting sawdust everywhere. . . ate garlic sausage and lettuce sandwiches with two bags of crisps, some chocolate and then napped for a couple of hours . . . woke around 6:20pm. Walked. The car was gone. . Found a dog tag for a dog called 'Jade'. Asked around a couple of the other regular dog walkers to see if they knew who's it was, but they didn't seem too sure. Called the number on it and found myself talking to the local pub!!? Turns out the previous landlord had dogs, so it must be theirs - although seems little point in worrying about trying to return it if it has the wrong phone number on it now. Put it deep in a trouser pocket to carry with me each day until I see who I 'think' may be the owner. . sat in the garden with a coffee, watered the garden and then ended up with a bowl of soapy water trying to clean and free up the sticking hose pistol grip attachment. Spent ages on it - took it all apart - scrubbed it clean - reassembled it - and it was little different!!??. . PCd this. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd . . . ate bowls of co-co pops and chocolate before bed around midnight. pa
3 - Woken by Sally around 6:45am. . .walked and found 20p. Did litter duty as usual. Lots of mess - and a huge pile of broken glass milk bottles all across the cycle path at the far end. Another old dog walker and I did our best to pick up the most dangerous pieces. Nearby, just laying in a neat row on the grass, were four more bottles, unopened and full of milk - all still in good date. Closely inspected the foil bottle tops and they were definitely all intact, so I figured I may as well take the risk and salvage that milk and use it (despite having bought myself a four pint container only last night!). I guess someone had all their milk stolen from their doorstep last night. :o( Ended up carrying the milk home in a carrier bag and filling the fridge up. . .sat around in front of the TV for ages, just feeling 'blah' and not up to doing anything. :o( . . . eventually managed to force myself to walk with Sally up to Kingswood to draw out some money . . . sat around in front the TV feeling blah some more. . . ate garlic sausage, mayo, and tomato sandwiches (6 pieces of bread and butter!) and three bags of crisps and then some chocolate - and then some chocolate - and then some more chocolate!!! Slept the afternoon away until around 5:30pm . . . walked . . . cooked up a pizza with extra onions and cheese and then let it cool to eat later . . . touched base briefly with BB . . . PS popped round for chats until early. He brought another DVD film to watch - a proper legitimate rental one this time, called 'Holes' I think it was. Vaguely interesting. . .ate cold pizza and chocolate biscuits . . . to bed in the early hours. ps
4 - Woken by Sally around 8:15am. . .out into the garden for morning coffee and cigarettes and spotted a little miniature frog - a graduate from my bucket nursery. Yayyyy. Very cute. Very pleased. . walked and found 5p . . . Sis1 called to touch base and ask if I wanted to join her and others for lunch later. Declined. . . ate multiple bowls of cornflakes with a whole pint of 'found' milk. Bit nervous drinking that at first - cause - well - these days, you never know what some lunatic may have done. Injected the milk with something? Who knows. It tasted ok - and Sally happily slurped up hers (Tested on animals!!! lol ). . . TVd . . . ate four sausage rolls . . . napped until around 6pm . . . walked and found another lighter . . . touched base with BB . . . ate toast and marmalade and then bowls of co-co pops with another pint of milk befor to bed in the early hours. . . I think I have identified, that I am definitely feeling rather 'down' at the moment and probably have been for a while, but I've just managed to keep it at bay by keeping busy. Too busy maybe. I feel a bit burned out as well. :o( pas
5 - Woken by Sally around 6:30am. . .walked . . . worked in the attic, mostly with the disc cutter, grinding a rebate in one of the walls to take a bunch of sockets, the same as I did in each of the alcoves in the living room. A single for a phone line, a double power, a single for a TV aerial, a double power and another single for whatever I decide, complete with plastic conduits leading down to below the floor level, so I can easily put whatever wires I need to, in whenever I want. Actually - it didn't go too well. That wall is SO uneven. Eventually only managed to fix in two of the single socket boxes, although they should make the fixing of the rest a little easier since they'll give me all the levels to aim for. :o(. . . cleaned up and ate four sausage rolls and two bags of crisps and then a few chocolate biscuits . . . napped for a couple of hours . . . walked. Well - it's only the first day of the new school term, and already the area seems completely different to how it has been (quieter) these last few weeks. The field was covered in litter already - which was rather disappointing because doing my almost daily litter duty lately, I've been managing to actually keep pretty much on top of it. Sat on a boulder and had a couple of cigarettes and just watched. A group of kids were racing all over the field on a couple of noisy miniature motorbikes. The sound of breaking glass drifted over from the kids playing in the school grounds. Sirens and the police helicopter in the far distance. A group of young teenage girls were walking down the road in the distance when one of them decided to play with the roadworks. The signs that are always being knocked over (and put back up when I walk past) are weighted down with sandbags. One of those girls hauled one up and started spinning around with it in the air, with sand flying out of it all around. Eventually she let it go and allowed it to fly into the road, before just walking off and leaving it there!! Extraordinary! As I began to head back with Sally, a guy from one of the nearby houses walked over and dragged the bag out of the middle of the road. We exchanged the usual 'I can't understand them - it could've killed someone' type comments as I rebuilt one of the collapsed road signs and put all the sandbags back around the legs. Actually - I've given up with a couple of those signs, because they are knocked down ALL the time, and you don't really need a sign to see the road is full of road works and traffic lights. That one big sign is different - more important. It warns that traffic joining from the side road, half way down the contraflow, is NOT controlled by the traffic lights!! Pretty dangerous arrangement. That sign NEEDS to be seen - or else someone is liable to see the green traffic light and just 'go for it', only to meet something pulling out and coming towards them!! Weird how the guys doing the roadworks don't ever seem to bother checking on their own signs. . . scoured the house for anything to load the bin up with for tomorrows collection. Threw out loads of old spools of wire I've had laying around unusued for years, and a few scraps of wood. . . TVd . . . touched base with BB . . . ate pink salmon sandwiches (eeww - I remember salmon tasting better than that!??) with two bags of crisps . . . sat in the garden for quite a while watching the frogs. Wow - is that a tiny young one climbing out of the bucket nursery for the first time? Yayyyy. :o) Ended up sat in the garden looking at everything through my pocket binoculars - which were 'just' able to focus on stuff so close! Actually - that was pretty cool - being able to get close ups like that. May have to do that again. Hope nobody sees me - they'll think I'm a complete nut! . . . TVd/PCd until early. ps
6 - Woken by Sally around 8am. . .walked and found a 10 note, which was a cool start to the day. :o) . . . eventually managed (with some difficulty) to cement up the remaining sockets and conduits in the middle of that wall. That pretty much makes it possible for me to start tidying up the rest of that wall, filling in all the holes and eventually start building it up level with layers of render. That is gonna take a LOT of cement! I estimate around nine or more sacks of sand for that one bit of wall! Thank god I have a cement mixer now. :o) The wall opposite, which doesn't have the chimney stacks to break it up, is an even bigger job!! :o( Swept and cleaned up, up there just a little. . . ate pink salmon and mayo sandwiches with two bags of crisps and then a bunch of cadburys mini eggs . . . napped all afternoon until around 5:30pm . . . PCd a bit and finally got round to doing a couple of lines e-mail reply to DS. I just NEVER e-mail anyone these days!!! . . . walked and found 2p. Briefly detoured around the big roadworks site on the way home, to replace all the cones that some idiot had dragged into the middle of the contraflow road, which was forcing passing traffic light controlled traffic, to suddenly brake and then squeeze by, by driving up on the pavement! . . . Progress of the attic room projectone of the daily excuses I've been using on myself, to justify (ease my guilt at) not getting round to replying to DS mail, was my intention to send him a picture of the attic to explain why I've been too busy to e-mail of late. Forced myself to go up there with the tripod and take a bunch of shots (16), to make up a big panoramic. Actually (at last!) worked out ok, and gives a pretty good idea of the progress (or not!) I've made so far. (And just for the record - no! I NEVER go out wearing shorts! It's just been a bit warm around the house of late. And yes - I usually wear knee high thick wooly black combat socks that stretch up to the knee! I only took them off cause BB made fun of me when I wore them with shorts. Does that make me fashionable now? lol). . actually, I HAVE reached a bit of a mental block with it. I'm having a bit of trouble trying to figure out how to 'join' the floor to the roof slopes!??? When I eventually lay the flooring down properly, I really want to be able to lift it back up if I need to, to do cabling and such (which I've found with the bedrooms, I 'often' do!). Given the flooring is all tounge and groove and all fits (or WILL do) tightly together, the only way to be able to lift it will be if I can slide pieces out into the void by the roof slope. If I use the 'usual' method of fixing a small vertical stud wall from roof slope to floor, I wont be able to ever lift the floor - without having to cut through pieces of it!!!!! I'm not sure what I'm gonna end up doing - although AM pretty decided that I'm gonna need to order two more 4x4 timbers, one for each of the lower part of those slopes, (and LOTS more 4x2s for use all over the place), no matter what. . .PCd . . . touched base with BB . . . ate bowls of cornflakes . . . sat in the garden/TVd/PCd briefly before bed around 1am. pas
7 - Up around 6:45am. . .Forecast for the next couple of days seems to be deteriorating so I figured I'd better give Sally a decent walk in todays sun. Walked. I was NOT the 'only' dog walker, who made a bee line for the dumped push chair by the swings surrounded by beer cans, just to make sure there wasn't still a baby sat in it!! Carried on down in the direction of Eastville park. Next to the fence in the big field on the way, I found two brand new, still in their cellophane wrapper, Verbatim 700MB 52x CD-Rs. Bizarre. Did the rest of the walk with two CD-Rs stuffed in one of my combat trouser leg pockets. . down to Eastville Park and ended up sitting with a cigarette by the lake for quite a while. Very pleasant. Eventually on along the river and then walked the extra up onto Purdown. On my usual climb up the hill to the monument, a little way off in the distance I could see a bunch of 'stuff' dumped by a fence on the edge of the wood. Looked like bits of a motorcycle fairing. Had my usual cigarette on top of the hill looking across at the view with the busy noisy M32 below. All the grasslands had been mowed and because there's been hardly much rain for so long, it was all brown and tinder dry. Here and there below, were the scorched and blackened 'clearings' where the rash of stolen-dumped-burned cars I'd seen there the last time I was up there, had been removed. Finished my smoke and then detoured on the way back down to check out the dumped debris. It WAS bits of a motorcycle fairing, but no sign of the bike. Uh oh!!! Right nearby was a large area of blackened grass where a fire had almost gotten completely out of control - and just over there, a large log was still all smoking!!! Very dodgy situation. Wouldn't have taken much for that whole grassland and nearby woods to have gone up in flames!! Nervously attempted to stamp down anything that was still smoking (oh my poor Dr Martins shoes! Very soon gonna be ready for throwing away! :o( They are NOT the best footwear for attempting to stamp out a fire - again!), but quite a lot was!!! That log was still all glowing embers and needed very little persuasion to ignite back into flame!! Did my best, but eventually had to just give in and let the log continue to smoulder. On the way back along the track, I passed a couple of workmen doing work on the track. Told them what I'd found and suggested they should keep an eye on the smoke and call the firebbrigade if things got going again. I confess - I made a point of stopping and telling them that, because I felt SO guilty about having maybe been seen, stomping around near the woods with a fire!! . . on back down to Snuff Mills and along the river into Vassals with frequent sits for more cigarettes here and there. Kinda felt like the last day of summer. Loads of squirrels all busy for Sally to chase. Patches of gold in several trees where the leaves had started to turn already, and even some already falling to the ground to rustle underfoot as we walked. . detoured to the Morrisons store in Fishponds on the way home and dashed in and bought two ready cooked chickens for 5.50. The young guy behind the counter seemed pretty slow at bagging them up, so I helped myself to four pieces of the sample cumberland sausage on cocktail sticks on the counter. If he'd been much slower, I'd have eaten the lot! . . back home somewhere after 11am. One of the local roadworks signs seems to have given up its battle completely. It's now just laying in the gutter all battered and warped where its been driven over! . . watched Judge Judy being rude to idiots on the TV and ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter and then a bunch of Cadburys chocolate mini eggs . . . napped the afternoon away until around 4pm . . . PCd this . . .walked and found 2p. Ok - I give up. ALL the roadworks signs were now all knocked down and SO badly bent and damaged, there was no way I could put any of them back up!!. . . gave Sally the remaining salmon with her food. That all went down pretty quick. :o) . . .touched base with Mum and suggested a TV show to watch . . .Mum called back after the program to touch base . . .touched base with BB who also seems on a bit of a down at the moment :o( . . .sat in the garden/TVd . . . ate bowls of co-co pops and finished the pack of chocolate mini eggs . . . touched base with BB before bed around 1am. Pretty bad toothache for part of the day, from my latest wobbly tooth which is inevitably gonna go the way of all the rest I've lost! Getting harder and harder to find enough teeth in my head to eat with. :o( paas
8 - Woken by Sally around 7:15am. . .walked . . . balanced my accounts. .put in a couple of phone calls to the dogs home and such, just 'making enquiries'. Confirmed that LB IS still on their computer system as having rehomed something from them! Hmm. It's all still preying on my mind rather. I'm a pretty loathsome individual if I just sit back and ignore an animals continued suffering aren't I. Think I'll just have to continue loathing myself for a while longer. :o( . . .left Sally at home and drove to the doctors surgery to hand in my repeat fluoxetine prescription request form . . drove to the pet food store at Longwell Green and stocked up on less than usual Sally food, because they didn't have stocks of the twelve packs of Winalot I usually buy, but WERE intending to have some in on Monday. Bought a sack of Pal Complete for 17.95 and then figured it was worth experimenting on Sally with some MUCH cheaper tins of meat. Bought a twelve pack of 'Cambrian' dog food for 3.72. Turns out to be much runnier and more gravy like than the Winalot, but Sally seems to like it well enough. Maybe I could save a little money by alternating - Winalot one day, Cambrian the next? Not really fair on Sally I suppose. . .Popped into Wickes and bought three sacks of sand and one of cement (6.46). Stopped off at Lidl on the way home and grabbed just a small handful of groceries . . . cooked and ate four cheeseburgers for lunch, followed by a little chocolate . . . napped. . . woken around 5:50pm by someone calling on the phone but leaving no message . . .walked. Seems like all the smashed up road signs have been removed - and replaced with a TV set!! Really! Someone has just dumped a TV set on the side of the road by the road works!! . . . sat in the garden/TVd . . . touched base with BB . . . TVd . . . ate some chocolate, the last of the cornflakes and then bowls of co-co pops . . . to bed around midnight.
9 - Up around 7am with BB calling to briefly touch base . . .walked and found 2p . . .TVd, sat around, did laundry and vacuuming chores . . . got distracted by an argument going on out in the street and had to stand near an open window, listening for quite a while! :o( As far as I could make out, the neighbour down and opposite, had put a note on the car parked outside their house. The car (all DVD screens and intrusively loud stereo) is owned by some Jamaican guy who appears to be the boyfriend of the girl down the road in the housing association house. For some (irritating) reason, this guy seems to insist on parking half on the pavement all the time. (No one else in the street seems to find that necessary). He also seems to have marked out a particular spot for himself - between the dropped kerbs of the two houses opposite, who've altered their front gardens for off street parking. Trouble with that is, the space between those two dropped kerbs/driveways, is NOT wide enough to accomodate his car. That means he overlaps the dropped kerb, and actually makes it very awkward for those people to drive in and out of their garden. Parking in this street is becoming increasingly impossible because every household now has (at least!) two vehicles. If I had a big enough front garden, I would absolutely invest the money and do the alterations to enable me to park off street. Having said all that - it IS irritating when people do that with their gardens, because it permanently removes parking spaces from the street - and in the case of the two adjoining houses opposite (one of which I don't think even owns a car!), has actually removed something like parking for four vehicles! Anyway - THAT is what all the arguing was about. Seemed like the Jamaican guy took exception to having a note put on his car, asking him not to park there. There was a LOT of shouting - mostly from the Jamaican guy and his unpleasant girl friend - all in front of her young child!! Hard to understand that Jamaican 'patwa'(?) stuff. At some point he DID move his car - with a smokey wheel spin and driven straight along the pavement, across and 'just' away from their drive - and then lots more threatening shouting. To be honest - once the argument had started - the people from the house opposite seemed little better, with lots of stuff like "You want trouble? I can give you trouble. Bring it on." etc, etc!!!!!! All rather upsetting to witness. At some point the Jamaican guy accused them of being racists!!!! Huh? Where the hell did THAT come from? That really got my back up. There's one thing worse than racism - and that's someone falsely claiming it, simply to serve their own antisocial behaviour! Nasty. Almost tempting to call social services/benefits office and see if he is entitled to be staying in that housing association house every night. Bet he isn't. :o( Sad how having just one house like that in the street, can really lower the tone of the neighbourhood and cause such nonsense. So - am I being racist? I don't think so - don't care what colour they are - just don't want to be made constantly aware of their comings and goings when I'm watching TV, by virtue of my vibrating front door (really!!) from their anti socialy loud car stereo, and shouting, and blowing of car horn rather than ringing the girls doorbell, etc, etc!! Tis a dodgy subject! It IS true that when I write my journal, I DO occasionally say 'the black guy' or similar when recounting some events, which may reveal an underlying racism (of which I AM aware - and on guard! After all - I've NEVER had a black aquaintance - and was brought up on a TV diet of Alf Garnet and Love Thy Neighbour!) - but usually it is simply because if the person I'm writing about is black, it is mostly 'out of the oridinary' for around here and thereby mentionable. There is a 'relatively' small black/asian/other community in this immediate neighbourhood (as yet). Certainly - almost ALL of the yobbish, anti social behaviour I am forced to witness in the area, is perpetrated by 'white trash'!!! Seems to me, kinda 'understandable' that many coloured people appear to have a bad anti social attitude and act like they have a chip on their shoulder and are ready for trouble, etc, etc. After all - they've lived their lives with racism, racist attacks and abuse and frequent news reports of racist killings and such - like that poor guy recently who was just waiting for a bus with his girlfriend, who was set upon by a pack of whites and then found dead with an axe in his head!!!! Jeeze - if I was a certain colour - and THAT was happening to people of 'my' colour - and could very well happen to me the next time I stepped outside the door, for no other reason than my colour - man, I'd have a different attitude towards the world and the people around me, I'm SURE!! So - some of what's going on is 'understandable'. What 'excuse' do the white kids have for acting like they do? White trash is WORSE!!!! It's all beyond me :o( Who can be happy in such a world? Not I. Pass the prozac! . . . . cut my hair/trimmed my beard etc. . . ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter . . . napped until getting on for 7pm . . . walked . . .returned MLs call. Touched base with PS and confirmed, my place tomorrow night. . . touched base with BB. . . TVd. . . ate bowls of co-co pops before bed, gone 1am. ps
10 - Woken by Sally at 6:50am! . . . the Jamaican guys car was parked down the street away from the people opposite's driveway. Someone else (black boyfriend of another neighbour down the road) had parked his car in that narrow space, partially blocking their driveway. Right up against the front of his car, was a large 'ton bag' of garden refuse, dragged out from that persons driveway! Looked as though they were 'making a point' and there'd maybe be trouble. Well - things aren't always what they seem. I saw the guy opposite come out of his house and drag the ton bag of refuse back into his garden, looking around in that manner one does, when someone has 'interfered' with your stuff in the night. I bet - I just BET - that Jamaican guy did that, to cause trouble, when he parked up down the road in the early hours last night! Ho hum :o( . . .walked . . . still feeling 'blah' and couldn't face doing anything much. Looks as though something has gone horribly wrong with the pond. Effectively I think it's dying and just turning into a stinking, toxic soup of unpleasantness. Got my own New Orleans goin on out there!! :o( . . . ended up pottering in the garden and finally got round to digging out a hole and burying a large old plastic paint container in the ground as a miniature pond, on the other side of the garden so it'll get some sun, and so I can look into it when I sit out there. Used a kitchen strainer and poured the bucket nursery of tadpoles carefully through and then put them in the new container. Took the risk of just putting them straight in the new tap water because the existing water had turned SO cloudy! All that digested iceburg lettuce I guess. They seem to be ok in their new water/home. . . ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter followed by the last chunks of Asda milk chocolate. Surprisingly really, REALLY nice chocolate. .napped. Woken around 3:45pm by the roaring noise of a really heavy rainstorm, beating down on the conservatory roof. Had a look in the attic and disappointingly there WAS rainwater getting in by the rear of the front chimney stack, where I've still to try and alter the leadwork. Seems like in really torrential rain, a pool forms allowing the water to back up and get in behind the lead! :o( . . . PCd briefly and found a REALLY nasty racist entry on the guestbook - someone actually claiming to have just murdered someone for goodness sake!! :o( Why inflict that on me? Delete, delete, DELETE! . . .did dishwashing chores and tidied up a bit . . . walked. God I feel down!!? Tired of everything - and everything 'people' mostly! :o( . . . touched base with BB . . . PS and ML popped round for chats. ML brought bottles of beer. :o) . . Sally was all up tight and was a real pain - even being punished by a bit of solitary confinement in the kitchen when she had a bit of a bark and growl at ML!! . . . chats, beer, coffee, biscuits etc until they both left around 1:30am. . .felt very awake. Ate a steak and kidney pie and crisps in the early hours. . . eventually to bed around 4am! passd
11 - Woken by Sally at 8:15am! . . . walked . . . sat around/TVd/PCd . . . watched the start of the Belgian Grand Prix on TV. . ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter followed by yet more chocolate. . . napped (after next door had finished loudly arguing and her guy had childishly driven off at speed. Made me feel REALLY uncomfortable! What IS the point in arguing like that? Actually - on reflection - all I could really hear was HIM. I really don't like that guy.) until woken by some loud mouthed kid shouting out in the street around 4:15pm. . . walked. Found a small plate of left over desert on the doorstep when I returned - from LB I guess. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd . . . ate chocolate and co-co pops before bed around midnight. ps
12 - Woke . . . walked and found 4p . . . Sat in the garden with a coffee and cigarettes. Still feeling really down and not in the mood to be doing - um - anything! Ended up biting the bullet and deciding that desperate action was required with the stinking pond. I figure if I just leave it like that, in a very short time everything will die, and frankly the smell that is coming off it is SO bad, it must be unpleasant for the neighbours, never mind me!! Can't understand why stirring up that silt has made it go like that?. . immersed one end of the hose in the water and drained as much as I could off, by syphoning it straight onto the patio and thence down the drain!. . spent pretty much the whole morning on muddy knees baling out the remaining stinking water with a bucket, then pouring that water through the kitchen sieve into another bucket. That way I managed to keep all the oxygenating pond weed and at least 'some' of the pondlife - mostly the bigger of the pond snails. Everything else got tipped straight down the drain. :o( Eventually scooped out all the disgusting silt and actually washed it through the sieve with the hose, to salvage anything salvagable - only a bit of weed and some snails really. Yikes - found what I assume was the skeleton of a long dead frog amongst that horrible oil like gunge. . used an old car sponge to mop up the last of the goo and then started filling the pond back up with tap water from the hose. As best I could, I actually hosed off and 'washed' (!!! Really!) all the weed before throwing it back into the cleaner water. . . finally just filled the pond right back up from the hose and threw in a lettuce leaf or two for any poor surviving pond snails. Seems to be very little alive in there now - but the weed looks a bit healthier and the water is incredibly clear - for the moment. Time will tell. Fingers very crossed . . sat with a coffee watching the tadpoles in the bucket and such. Saw at least three almost fully formed miniature frogs - still with tails of diminishing sizes. One actually ended up getting out of the bucket and started hopping across the garden - even though it still had a tail! I intervened when it kinda got 'stuck', on its back, to a decorative stone that was all hot and dry in the sun and must have been a bit like jumping into a frying pan! It ended up back in the bucket, apparantly none the worse for the fry up. . . ate two bananas and a handful of chocolate biscuits and then napped . . . woke around 6pm . . . walked. Saw LB outside and had a quick word and went through the motions of saying thanks for the left overs desert. .Sally caught and killed a mouse over the field! :o( . . . BB called briefly. . . sat in the garden watching the tadpoles and miniature frogs in the new sunken nursery and tried taking a (unsuccesful) photo or two. Fired up the PC to look at the photos only to find a problem with my secondary (120Gb) hard drive!! Seemed to have somehow gone corrupt - completely! Unfortunately I didn't have 'restore' monitoring that drive so I ended up having to just go ahead and format the damn thing!!!! :o( Not sure why it happened or what I may have lost - or indeed, the mood I'm currently in, if I actually give a toss. Oh well - easy come easy go. :o( . . . touched base with BB but I was in a terrible grouchy mood . .finished formatting the drive and then immediately turned the PC off in disgust . . . ate a tin of spaghetti bolognese with four pieces of bread and butter. Gave Sally LBs desert left overs. Not sure why, but I just couldn't bring myself to eat it . . . TVd until bed around midnight. pas
13 - Woken by Sally around 5:30am!!? Thought she needed the garden, but she didn't. Grrrr. Left the back door open for her just in case and then went back to bed to eventually sleep for another hour or so until back up around 7am . . . walked and found 2p and a 50p travel token. Found some of the roadworks stuff on the opposite side of the field, so walked it back to the roadworks and threw it over the fence, which some workmen were rebuilding after the nightly destruction . . .finally got round to unloading the sand and cement I'd left in the car from the other day, and then left Sally at home and drove to the doctors surgery to pick up my repeat fluoxetine prescription. Some time ago, I filled out the form which enables repeated prescriptions to be automatically passed through into the pharmacy once they've been authorised, which saves me having to sit around and wait for it to be made up when I go there. Instead, I can leave it long enough for my prescription to be all made up and waiting on a shelf for me. Well - that was exactly what the case was and the woman happily went and brought the packet from the shelf - but then she turned around and went and got another!!??? Huh? She claimed (and showed me the ticket to 'prove' it) that it was a prescription from July which I'd never picked up! I explained something had gone wrong and I most certainly HAD picked up that perscription! I take a pill every day - I haven't missed any - and since I get two months supply each time, I'd certainly have noticed not having had any for a couple of months! The woman seemed a bit 'vague' (or perhaps just didn't believe me - after all, they DO have to deal with some pretty weird people in there don't they) so I said I was quite happy to have double my usual lot, as long as I only had to pay for the one perscription! So, after paying my usual NHS fee, I was soon back in the car with FOUR, thirty capsule boxes of fluoxetine!!! Seems a bit dodgy to me, they can make a mistake like that. Almost tempted to start taking extra pills, the way I've been feeling of late! :o! I'm sure it's the brand of tablet - and that brand is pretty ineffective. Unfortunately - half the new lot is also the 'Dr. Reddy's' brand I've been on for a while - although the other sixty capsules are a 'Milpharm' brand. Oh well. . . with the petrol guage on red, I stopped off at a petrol station to fill up, only to get all caught up in that panic buying nonsense sparked by the threat of more fuel price protests. Bit of chaos on the forecourt with people getting back in their cars announcing you couldn't get any petrol, but with other people stood with thge pump in their tank as though they were filling up!??. Walked in to the cashier just to check what the situation was, and sure enough, the story was they were only going to be serving 'emergency services vehicles' from now on!! Damn. I'm not panic buying - I just need some!! Figured in the abscence of being able to fill up with petrol, the best thing I could do would be to stock up on dog food and groceries and then just park the car up, outside home until things settled down and got back to normal. Drove to Jolleys at Longwell Green and and stocked up on several of my usual 'twelve packs' of Winalot dog food, which they now had in stock. 48 tins for 16.20. Had a word or two with the guy on the till about the petrol station nonsense. He said (wherever it was he lived) he'd queued for ages to fill up last night - and at some point ugliness in the queue had got so out of hand, the police had been called!! Good grief. What IS the matter with people! These protesters are just making everything worse for everyone aren't they? Drove on to ASDA to stock up on groceries. Well - chickens, co-co pops and chocolate mostly! Damn - those twelve packs of Winalot dog food are 5p or so cheaper in Asda! Put all my groceries (64.96) in the car and then walked across the car park to look over in the direction of the petrol station. They still had petrol - there WAS a queue and unusually an employee marshalling it - but not 'too' bad, so I figured I'd give it a go queueing up, and get some on the way out. Didn't have to wait too long at all, so, having succesfully 'bagged' a pump, I figured I may as well join in with the 'panic' and fill the car right up. (32.29 Litres @ 30). Blimey - must have doubled the value of the car! lol . . ate half a chicken, half a tub of coleslaw and four thick pieces of bread and butter, followed by rather a lot of chocolate again! . . . napped the afternoon away . . . woke around 5:15pm, just in time to pick up an early call from BB . . .walked and sat over the field for quite a while watching a misty grey weather front gradually drift in, chasing off a handful of hot air balloons. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd . . .ate corned beef and lettuce sandwiches, two bananas, a packet of ASDA jaffa cakes and then a couple of bowls of cornflakes!!! Blimey! Guess I was hungry! . . . TVd until bed around midnight. ps
14 - Woken by Sally making some noise as she wandered into the other bedroom around 6:45am . . .walked in the light rain and found 2p. Did litter duty (as often) and took some childish delight in collecting up all the bottles and debris left behind by last nights rugby training, and throwing them all over the fence into the rugby club compound (again!) for one of THEM to have to clear up! . . . sat around/TVd/PCd . . . ate half a chicken, half a tub of coleslaw and four thick pieces of bread and butter, followed by rather a lot of ASDA milk chocolate again! That stuff is SO 'more-ish' when you eat a chunk at a time and suck it to death. I think I actually prefer it to good old Cadburys!? . . . napped until woken around 5pm by the noise of the kids up the street playing with hammers in their back yard again. :o( . .oh no! There's a dead tadpole in the bucket nursery!! What a shame after having lasted all this time. :o( The others still seem active and healthy enough. Gonna keep an eye on that dead one for a day or so, to try and prove my suspicion they ARE cannibals. . . PCd a bit of this . . . walked and found 2p. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd and watched a show about the events leading up to the London suicide bombings! :o( . . . ate chocolate, half a coffee madeira cake and then a couple of bowls of co-co pops . . . TVd/PCd until bed around 2am. pas
15 - Woken around 8am by the sound of someone somewhere having trouble getting their car started!? . . . walked in the rain and found 2p and a cricket ball. Funny how the things I end up finding over the field and round about, give something of an insight into what is going on in society. Like when it was the rugby world cup, I found a miniature rugby ball for Sally to play with. Now England have just regained the ashes, I find a cricket ball! Weird. . .perhaps it was because of the turbulence caused by the rain, but there was no sign of the dead tadpole in the bucket!? . . . managed to force myself to do some cementing on a bit of the wall in the attic between the firebreasts, starting the tedious process of filling in all the holes in the slapdash dust mortar between the bricks, and starting to build it up to required levels. Did it bit by bit, hand mixing up several buckets of cement. Terribly boring and tedious. Eventually had enough and left the rest for another day . . . ate four pieces of bread and butter with mushrooms, chopped onion and grated cheese all cooked up into a 'mush' in a saucepan. Actually turned out really rather nice. Followed by chocolate of course. . . napped until around 7:10pm!! Very briefly touched base with Mum to confirm I WAS still alive and to apologise for not having yet returned her two ansaphone messages! . . . walked. Dark already. Autumn is definitely on its way. . TVd . . .ate bowls of cornflakes. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd until bed around 1am. ps
16 - Woke around 8am . . . walked and found 2p. Wow - feels REALLY cold in the wind. Could have done with gloves! . . touched base with Mum. . . cut my hair/vacuumed/TVd/sat around/PCd and ended up trying to do just a little maintenance on the PC, and make sure my external back up drive has at least 'some' of the stuff on it I'd rather not lose if I can help it. Cancelled copying over all my music collection half way through, because it said it was gonna take another two or three hours to complete!! . . . ate bowls of muesli, a couple of bananas and some chocolate before napping to try and shake off a nasty headache. . . woke around 7pm . . . walked . . . BB called to touch base . . .TVd. Plenty of news reports about how the supermarkets are reducing the price of petrol! Typical - that'll teach me to 'panic fill' the car! :o( . . PS popped round for chats, chocolate and chocolate biscuits until early. Ended up watching another of his Turkish counterfeit DVDs. Some sprawling and bloody film about the crusades! Actually seemed to be pretty anti orthodox religion, which appealed to me much! . . . felt very awake and ended up eating corned beef, mayo, onion and lettuce sandwiches with a couple of bags of beef flavoured crisps around 2am. Eventually to bed to toss and turn until even earlier before sleep. pas
17 - Woken by Sally around 8am . . . walked and found 3p. Did litter duty, cleared up all the beer tins and glass bottles all around the childrens swings, re-erected the fence which had been knocked down all around the roadworks, and on the way back home managed to replace two heavy cast iron drain covers which had been removed and left laying in the gutter near the deadly gaping holes!! Just another day then! :o( . . . PCd this all morning. . . Brrrr. Feels cold, although probably because I had the patio door and the door to the uninsulated attic both open. Actually put the heating on real low for an hour or so, just to bring things back up a little. I'm terribly eager to alter the cupboard entrance to the attic and make it larger so I can attempt to put in a staircase, less steep than the ladder - but until the work in the attic has progressed far enough to allow me to put in some insulation on the roof slopes, I MUST resist. I tried sleeping with that attic/cupboard door open the other night. I was frozen! 'Camping' cold. I think I've decided I definitely DO need some more large timbers delivered, before I can make any more real progress with it all. Need to check my finances and get it ordered and try and force myself to 'get going' on it again. At least it'll be cooler for working up there now . . . ate half a chicken, the last of the coleslaw and four pieces of bread and butter, a banana and some chocolate before sleeping the afternoon away . . . woke around 5pm. Dunno why but somehow I seem to sleep all 'clenched' up, and often wake feeling tired and aching - my hands in particular, where I guess they've been clenched into fists for a couple of hours! :o( . . . balanced my accounts . . . PS called saying 'tonight - again?'. Huh? Apparantly 'his girls' are entertaining and he's been invited to leave for the evening! lol :o) . . . walked and found 14p. Not for the first time, I passed a drug deal going on at the side of the street. That same kid on a moped obviously arranges (by mobile phone I presume) to meet his customers at a certain time and place, and then rides to where their car is parked and delivers their bags of herbal cannabis! What is bizarre about it to me, is how they are all SO open about it. As I walked alongside the car after the moped had driven off, I could clearly see the 'kids' in the back inspecting their purchase! I even made a joke out of it and called out 'Skin Up!' as the car did a three point turn and temporarily blocked my way across a junction. The driver 'joked' back, that he'd just had one and wasn't really up for driving!!!!!! Uhuh!!!!! Jeeze!!!!!!! NOT funny! Trouble is - I almost wish I could get that moped riders phone number, cause that stuff is SO good to smoke!! Better than fluoxetine any day! :o/ . . .drank a glass of red wine and PCd a little . . . LB called to let me know her new phone number . . .touched base with BB . . . PS popped round for chats, biscuits and TV and to let me borrow the film we watched yesterday. . . ate a banana and TVd/PCd until bed around 3am or later! ps
18 - Woken by Sally at getting on for 8:30am . . .walked. Weird weather - much warmer this morning. . . pottered around doing nothing much. PCd a bit, listened to some music and downloaded updates and such. Dismantled my broken watch, cleaned a couple of the sticking buttons and figure it may be worth buying a new battery for it, to give it another go. Had another look at that crusades film we watched the other night that PS let me borrow. It's called "The Kingdom Of Heaven". Quote:"I put no stock in religion. By the word religion I have seen the lunacy of fanatics of every denomination, be called the will of god. Holiness is in right action . ." . . .ate the last half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter, chocolate biscuits and chocolate . . . napped until around 6:30pm . . .walked . . . TVd . . . touched base with BB . . . ate a banana or two and bowls of co-co pops . . .TVd until bed at midnight. p
19 - Woke around 7am . . . walked . . . TVd/PCd and surfed shops and such. I've been increasingly wanting to'buy' something of late. Not sure why. Just seem to be in the mood for some retail therapy for some reason. Maybe because this month sees the annual interest on my savings added to my account, and I feel as though I should be entitled to enjoy spending at least a 'little' of it on 'non essentials'? Actually - I seem to be building up quite a mental list of crazy things I'd like to buy!!! I'm tired of having to 'make do' with stuff I don't really want/like - and it pulls at the heart every time I walk past the new neighbours window at night and can see that HUGE plasma TV mounted on their wall! lolol . . . walked with Sally up to Kingswood, drew out some savings and bought a new flea collar for Sally and a new battery for my watch . . . back home and fitted the battery in my watch and yayyyyy - works ok again. :o) . . . PCd some more for ages, looking at all sorts of nonsense for sale, umming and ahhing about what to throw some money away on - just to have that feeling of something 'new' in my existance. Amazing how you can buy all sorts of relatively cheap surveillance/covert CCTV type cameras these days. I want one of those motorised ones high up on the front of my house, connected to my living room TV, so I can peek out at the passing yobs without peeking!! :o/ . . .surfed the Argos catalogue looking at chordless phones in some detail (not for the first time) and eventually decided I WAS gonna buy one, to replace the old poor performance non-digital one my sister gave me which I still have plugged in but never use. . . left Sally at home and drove to Emersons Green heading for the Argos store. Detoured into one of the other stores on the way and spotted some padded checked work shirts on sale for only 4 each!!!! Blimey - you don't find them that cheap in a charity shop these days! The closest to black they had was a dark green. I bought two - mostly for keeping warm sitting around in front the TV in the winter. I get through a fair few of these type of shirts. I wear the elbows out somehow - by resting my elbows on the sides of the comfy chair while I smoke and weild the remote controls. . into Argos and made the final decision about which phone set I was gonna get. Binatone E800 Triple pack for 39.95 (aside from anything else - cause it was a nice plain black). I figure I can position a phone on each floor of my house (now I 'almost' have three floors!!! Ooooer. :o) ), and with a bit of luck, that new digital type will be far better at transmitting through the walls than that old one my sister got rid of. Briefly popped into Sainsburys, specifically to buy some ready cooked chickens, but they had some sort of supply problem and had none in!?? :o( What IS this country coming to? One minute its fuel protests and no petrol, the next its no chickens! Hmmmm - maybe there are herds of slow moving chickens blocking the M4 somewhere in Wales? . . . back home to dress in shirts and charge up all the chordless phones for the first time and read the manual. . . very tired but too late for a nap. PCd and looked up a phone company which may give Mum a better rate for calling Sis2 in Baharain than BTs outrageous 1+ per minute!! . . . touched base with Mum to broach the subject . . . tested one of the numbers and eventually managed to get through (with difficulty, which should have been a warning) and briefly touched base with Sis2. Got off the phone real quick and called Mum and suggested she try it. She did - several times - but failed to manage to get through! :o( . . . walked. Just as I was leaving the house the guy and girl were going in next door so I had a quick word and asked if the round cable conduit that was laying bent in half in the garden was being thrown away, and if so, could I have it. The guy works for an electrical company and said he had a bunch in the van if I ever wanted any. When I returned from walking the dog, two new full lengths were laying in my garden. Woo woo. Nice one. That should cover (with the lengths I already have) most of the power and light sockets I still have to do around the house - and now in the attic of course. :o) . . . touched base with BB on one of the new phones and wandered all over the house checking how functional it was. With the base station currently in the living room, it seems to manage really rather well in every room, including the attic! Gets a bit scratchy out in the back yard, but considering that is through four brick walls, that ain't bad at all. :o) I think maybe the base station is gonna end up living in the kitchen for best all round coverage. . .TVd . . . finally got round to eating and ate corned beef, mayo, onion, tomato and lettuce sandwiches with two bags of crisps and a banana or two . . .TVd/PCd until bed after 1am. p
20 - Woken by the phone ringing but no message left at around 8am . . . walked and found 12p in coppers all along the way . . . sat around. Checked my accounts, tranferred over some savings and then phoned the builders merchant and ordered some more timber for the attic project. 2 x 4"by4" and 10 x4"by2", all 4.8metre lengths to be delivered - 101.64. 'Maybe' with me by the weekend. . . ended up trying to ruthlessly sort out some more stuff to get rid of. Seems like every room and cupboard is just bulging with stuff I never use, and never will. To hell with trying to sell it - just having the stuff gone and some free cupboard space is worth more to me than any small amount I may have got for it! Sorted out my old scanner (which won't run under Windows XP. 69 five years ago?); my old stereo CD player which works perfectly ok but won't play CD-R/RW discs so I've no interest in that (although I kept the nice speakers which are wired up to my other stereo in the living room); my old printer (which gets through loads of ink even when it's never used, so I can't afford to use it!) and also the printer that PS donated, because although probably a good one, it seemed rather big by todays standards, I didn't have the driver disks - and I can't afford to buy ink for that one either! (Why is printer ink SO expensive?); my old stack system 10 band graphic equalizer which I SO used to love using to listen to my music; a bag of bits and pieces, clothes, books, old chordless phone my sister gave me etc, etc. Resisted including my old, 'almost' useless laptop - but that IS destined for similar disposal (dead battery/small hard drive/minimal memory/possibly faulty screen/no sound card/ etc) in the near-ish future. Loaded up the car, left Sally at home and drove up to Kingswood to that Furniture project charity place to see if they'd have most of it. They seemed happy enough to accept all the electrical stuff. Stopped off at another charity shop in Kingswood on the way back home and got rid of the bag of clothes, books etc. One less thing - or several. :o) . . . loaded Sally up in the car and drove into town, heading for the Marcuss stores place (Terry's outfitters! lol) in Hotwells, intending to buy some trousers and maybe a pair of army boots to replace my Doc Martins, which are now so badly worn and split along almost all the creases, I can no longer wear them in the wet. . left Sally in the car park round back and then spent ages in the store looking at just about everything! Amazing what they had in there. Had a whole rack of ex-police fleeces, which still had the blue and white squares reflective strips on them! Almost tempted to get one of those - just to see what the yobs over the field would make of the sight of a guy in black combat trousers with a German Shepherd dog in the distance! lol Actually seems a bit dodgy you can just buy all that sort of gear. For a relatively low investment, it would be quite possible to deck yourself out in a complete police outfit from head to foot - stab vest and helmet included - everything apart from the 'numbers'!!!!!! Sadly they didn't have the type of black combat trousers I was specifically looking for. All they had were 100% cotton ones. I've learned from experience, a polyester cotton mix will last MUCH longer and retain the colour better, especially after plenty of washes. The cotton ones seem to weaken and go an embarassing blue!! Decided (against my better judgement) because it was all they had, to buy one pair of the 'O-G Combats' cotton ones (14.99), to see how they last. Managed to resist all the other neat things and then headed upstairs to where they have the big cages of various countries ex-army boots for a search through. Wow - that pair looks very nearly unworn! Couldn't resist and ended up having them and a pair of new laces for 19.99. Barely managed to resist buying anything else and returned to the car. And no - I'm not some sort of weirdo who 'likes' dressing up like a SWAT team member. I simply prefer to dress in black, and not being in the least concerned about fashions or designer label nonsense, am happy to wear army/police type clothes and boots because I reckon, of all the stuff you can buy, that sort of stuff is most likely to be 'proven' as the most functional/hardest wearing/longest lasting/best value for money stuff you can buy. . Damn - it was spotting with rain when I parked up - sunny spells when I got back out and despite having left the sunroof and windows open, poor Sally was obviously a bit hot!! HATE leaving her in the car anywhere (no matter how short a time) for just such a reason! . . . as I'd planned to before I set off (hence bringing Sally 'shopping'), I drove on through the Cumberland Basin and headed into Ashton Court and parked up in the parking area near the mansion house. Laced up my new boots and put them on to give them a 'test drive'. Skirting Ashton Court golf course with the mansion house ahead belowWalked past the show ground area up to the deer park and then turned left and headed up the track toward the ancient oak trees. Thankfully they seem to have invested some money in a really decent anti-dog fence all along that track. Just as well - Sally was REAL eager to go and investigate the herds of deer. Actually saw one big antlered stag headbutting the branches of a large tree - practicing for the rut maybe? Followed the track up through the woods and then along to the avenue of old redwoods. Saw a fox in the undergrowth (before Sally did) and managed to get her on her lead before she was liable to disappear off after it. The fox suprisingly actually just froze for ages, so I ended up pointing it out to Sally and walking slowly towards it with her. Eventually it ran off into the undergrowth and made Sally whine with excitement and strain on her leash. Sat quietly in the woods on a piece of felled redwood trunk for a cigarette. Wonderful place. Very warm. Eventually out of the woods, skirted the golf course and then straight down the 'ski slope' back towards the mansion house. Briefly wandered around the mansion gardens as Sally attempted to climb the big trees in pursuit of the chattering complaining squirrels. Never seen Sally get SO high up a tree trunk before! She must have managed to clamber up around my head height, before crashing back to earth! . . back to the car and headed home. Took the risk of leaving my boots on, just to see if I could drive in them. Bit difficult not being able to really feel the pedals, but safely-ish managed it, without pressing them all at once under a single big boot. . drove through town, along the M32 and detoured up through Fishponds. Stopped off at the Morrisons store and bought two ready cooked chickens for 5.50. . (if there is a parking space I will - if not I won't) stopped off at a bakers shop and still in my spend spend spend mood, treated myself to a big fresh farmhouse loaf of bread for seventy something pence, sliced thickly please. What decadence!!! :o) . . . feasted on half a chicken and six pieces of thickly buttered 'proper' bread. Wow - nice bread. SO much better than that tasteless cheapest rubbish I normally eat. Finished off with a handful of chocolate biscuits and a couple of squares of ASDA plain chocolate (which isn't as fiendishly good as their milk chocolate). headachey - napped for an hour or two, only to wake with the same headache, maybe worse! Annadin and coffee in the garden. . .walked. Over the field, a young boy approached me and asked if I'd give him a leg up so he could climb up into the tree 'to play'!!!! Only a young kid playing kidstuff - difficult to refuse - but WOW did I feel really, REALLY uncomfortable doing so! What on earth would anyone have thought as I stooped and walked under the overhanging branches of a tree with a young boy!! I joked that I hoped he hadn't just stepped in some dog poop and THAT was why he'd asked me. I'm not practiced in the art of 'leg ups'! Means 'touching' someone for christsake!!! My first attempt resulted in the poor kid pretty much being thrown to the floor at my feet!!!!!!!!!! What on earth would people think!!!!!!!!!! Felt like being one step away from being accused of being a paeodphile child abuser and lynched from that tree by a vigilante mob! My second attempt was more successful (it had to be - I wanted out of the situation!) and the kid managed to climb into the branches. I joked as I walked off, that if he was still there in the morning, it was nothing to do with me! As soon as my back was turned, the kid was calling out to his friends that he was stuck in the tree, couldn't get down, and needed their help!! I think (trust) he was just messing with them. I carried on walking! . . .PCd this a little . . . BB called . . . sat in the garden for ages, and then sat in the attic for a while. Damn - that space up there really could make a hell of a bedroom! More garden sitting before TVing a bit, but as usual these days - absolute RUBBISH on ALL the channels!! The TV has been like a lifelong friend to me - a 'partner' through the years. With all the dumbed down trash that is on these days - I almost feel like I'm going through a painful divorce at times! Ate a couple of pieces of just bread and butter. That 'propper' bread is SO nice! . . . PCd and (because I was disappointed not to have been able to buy the type of trousers I wanted) somehow ended up bumping into and surfing the "Surplus And Adventure" site. Wow. WOW! What an excellent store! Damn - should have ordered stuff (and the trousers I wanted) from them, instead of buying those cotton ones earlier! :o( Dunno why - after all these years of playing with the PC, I STILL don't regard it as a place to go shopping, probably because I still worry SO much about putting my debit card details over the net. Blimey - they have absolutely EVERYTHING in that store!!!? (Good grief - just exactly what IS an electric powered 'air' gun????) I couldn't help myself - I spent HOURS surfing every single page of their catalogue!! Wonderful things! lolol Eventually to bed around 3am only to be too hot and toss and turn for ages before sleep. paas
21 - Woken by Sally at getting on for 8:30am . . .walked. Checked the tree, just to make sure there was no sign of a small boy still up it! . . .PCd this. Mum called to touch base. . .PCd this/TVd through until afternoon . . . ate half a chicken and four pieces of bread and butter . . . lay down to nap only for Sis1 to call saying she'd pop in a bit later with her holiday snaps on CD. . almost napped for an hour until Sally anounced Sis1 had arrived . . . chats/coffee/holiday snaps for a few hours . . .walked pretty much in the dark already and found 12p . . . sat in the garden . . .TVd . . . touched base with BB . . . ate corned beef, mayo, lettuce and tomato sandwiches with two bags of crisps somewhere around midnight. . .TVd a little more until oh SO tired, to bed. ps
22 - Woken by Sally at getting on for 8:30am . . .walked in the heavy dew (and got wet feet through the holes in my Doc Martins). . .PCd. Bugger - that second, 120GB hard drive, has gone bad again!!!?? I think it must have a 'proper' problem! :o( It seems to be dragging down the speed of the whole system and making it near unusuable!!! Damn, damn, damn! :o( In all the years I've been PCing now - that is the first drive I've actually had go 'bad' on me. Thank goodness I was more or less only using it as my secondary/backup drive. . decided to get in the car and drive back into town and return the trousers I bought the other day. It's silly - but I know me - I'm not happy with those trousers (and when I got them home I discovered the two top pockets don't even have the flaps and buttons I rely on for keeping my keys and stuff safely 'locked' away) and I'll never want to wear them! Left Sally at home and drove through the nightmarish traffic back down to the Marcuss store. They wouldn't give me my money back! The girl insisted on just giving me a credit note - which could only be used in THAT section of the store! :o( I went through everything they had, trying to find something (anything!) I wanted, I could throw the money away on - but I couldn't find anything at all!! Eventually in a bad mood, feeling as though I'd just 'been had for 15' I gave up and left. . decided since I was down there (I SO rarely am), I may as well park up somewhere and have a look round some of the shops in town. Drove round and round looking for a parking space. Plenty of pay and display slots, but I'd not brought any change with me. Eventually figured I'd just go in one of the multi storey car parks, because I wasn't liable to be parked in there for very long. It wasn't until I'd got my ticket and driven in through the barrier that I saw the signs for the prices. 4.10 for anything up to the first two hours. HOW MUCH!!!!!!!! Too late - I was trapped. Everything was automated and I couldn't see anyone to plead with to let me straight back out, so I was stuck. In a VERY bad mood. Parked the car up and headed off to St Nicholas Market to have a look around at everything. Didn't last long. Felt very fed up and started feeling as though I was in a very alien environment with all the crowds of people rushing around buying stuff. Within 15 minutes I'd retreated back to the car, threw away my 4.10 and headed straight home. . doesn't take much to make me feel really down. Losing almost 20 for nothing, AND losing a hard drive all in one day, pretty much did the trick. Felt like whatever I may have done with the rest of the day was pretty much cancelled! :o( . . . ate the last of the 'nice' bread as toast with marmalade - and then had to have some more made of the crusts of the cheap stuff in the freezer. I'm not keen on those crusts as sandwiches (because of my bad/missing teeth!) and they tend to mount up and stay in the freezer for ages. . . napped until woken by children playing/screaming around 4:30pm. Felt a bit nauseas and unwell. . . PCd, undid the machine and removed the secondary hard drive, and simply removed the problem. :o( Set the external drive copying the contents of much of the 'my documents' folder (192GB), to ensure I have at least one backup. That's the PC running, with the desk fan blowing at it and the external drive and power supply for safety, for the rest of the day then! . . . walked and found a penny . . . TVd . . . BB called but I said I'd call her back. . . TVd the end of the show I was watching ('Street Crime USA' - shocking reality show about a couple of English cops going to 'Cicero' to see how the US police deal with outrageous/sickening/pointless gang crime), and feeling at last a 'little' less sick, ate co-co pops and chocolate. Briefly touched base with Mum to suggest a show she may wish to catch, and then called BB back to tell her how utterly s*** I felt MY day had been!. . .TVd until getting on for 2am before the PC was done with its backup. Actually, it would have been quicker than that, but on a couple of annoying occasions (unknown to me watching TV downstairs) it stopped (for who knows how long!), waiting for me to confirm a dialogue box option, because I was overwriting some stuff, etc. . at last, to bed. paas
23 - Woken by the sound of rain on the conservatory roof around 8:30am . . .walked in the rain and found 5p in coppers. . . PCd this . . .around 10:15am there was a ring at the door and the guy from the builders merchant was here with my latest order of timber - all horribly wet in the rain! They were supposed to ring me before they arrived! Grrrr. Good job I was here! Moved the car and helped stack the timber up in the house through from the living room into the kitchen. Too wet and rainy to try and get that up in the attic, according to the forecast for a couple of days at least. :o( . . .in a bit of a funny fed up mood for some reason and just sat around. Looking out the window, it appeared from the absence of cars that both neighbours were out. Hooked up the living room PC, closed the windows and unusually played a bit of music REAL loud - 'surfing' from track to track. Ooops - at some point during my anti social behaviour, the next door neighbour had returned!!!! Sorry!! . . . surfed and after all these years of never having done so, finally ended up registering on eBay and Paypal, and then ordered some cheap eBay advertised combat trousers 'as a test', fully accepting that I could well be wasting yet more money, although ONLY 11.98 - including postage!!???. . napped for a couple of hours . . .walked . . . drank a glass of red wine and cooked a mushroom, onion and cheese four egg omelette and ate with four pieces of bread and butter. Actually - turned out to be not so much an omlette but more a big mushroomy eggy heap! . . Not sure why (punishment? visitors?) but the next door neighbour seemed to have shut their dog out in the back garden for an hour or so while I was cooking. It annoyingly barked pretty much non stop while it was out there! Grrr. :o( . . . touched base with BB . . . TVd until bed a little after midnight. pasd
24 - Woken by Sally around 7:45am . . .walked and found a penny and a lighter . . . got the ladder out and shifted all the twelve lengths of timber up into the attic via the bathrooom window and roof, scaffold pole on the back of the house and the skylight. Re-fixed the roof hooks on the short light section of ladder and manhadled it up onto and over the roof to have a look at the flashing around the top edge of the front chimney stack, where rainwater still manages to creep in somehow - but only when it is that really heavy torrential type of rain that forms rivers. Carefully inspected everything and peeled back the lead flashing only to be rather none the wiser about how the rain can possibly be getting in there!?? Hummmm - I wonder? Can it be creaping up behind the drip strip above the lead when it races down like a river? That MUST be it. . mixed up some cement with PVA and waterproofer and trowelled it into the gap as best I could, where feeling up underneath with my fingers suggested there was a couple of feet of 'weak spot'. While I was up on the roof, Sally took advantage of the situation (like when I go out) and made herself all comfortable on the setee! Covered the throw in mud - but she looked so cute and ears down apologetic when I discovered her laying there, it was impossible not to just join her in my cement and dust covered work clothes and stroke her tummy for a while. lol :o) . . . vacuumed and cleaned up . . .very tired but too late for a nap. Ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter . . . walked and found 60p. Wow - someone has 'done a number' on the fencing around the roadworks! All knocked down and much of it actually bent, broken and destroyed! WHAT a mess!. . . touched base with BB . . . was just about to throw away the empty cigarette papers packet on which I'd written details of the type and size of combat trousers I'd wanted, to remind me, when I suddenly realised I'd ordered the wrong size!! 32" waist? Yeah - right - when I was younger maybe - not now! Fool!!! Actually, maybe I can still get into a 32" waist - but I need a 34" to get the long leg length I need! Those sort of trousers have those marvellous adjusters at the sides which will take in a good couple of inches as required. Oh well. I need some 'new' work trousers. If they are fit for nothing else, I'll use them for that. Why on earth am I having such a hard time just buying the trousers I want??!!! Maybe I should just resign myself to never wearing trousers ever again - and never got out again - and get broadband and just order in and have delivered everything I need!!! Don't think Sally would appreciate that - not going out that is - me wandering around without trousers too for that matter! lol . . PS popped round for chats till early. Ended up watching much of 'Predator' on TV - AGAIN!!! Ate loads of chocolate biscuits and chocolate. . .to bed around 1am. pas
25 - Woken by Sally at 8am . . .walked and found a penny. Some guy was attempting to rebuild the very destroyed, roadworks fence. I passed a word with him and offered to help him 'tip' a long length of undamaged but knocked over fencing, back upright onto its feet. He declined and moaned about how his boss had dragged him out of bed (after a few ciders the night before), to come and repair the fence. "I better get paid for this" he said. Could there be any doubt? On a Sunday morning?!!! Blimey - who'd want his job! . . ate a banana . . worked in the attic and set about starting to try and put in the lower 4x4 on the front slope. Slow getting going and must have spent about as long just thinking it through as I did actually starting the work! Right down in the narrow bit of roof by the eaves, I had to do most of the cutting out of the bricks with the disc cutter and hammer and chisel, on my back!!! Nasty - physically demanding. The walls either side were in SUCH bad shape (where the weather had somehow degraded them, 'exfoliating' the bricks before I had the new roof done) it soon became clear I wasn't going to be able to do the job in one go. Had to call it quits after cementing the bricks up around the rebates, and leaving it overnight to firm up a little!! . . ate a banana and bowls of cornflakes around 4pm and then napped until woken by Sally around 6:30pm . . . walked. Pretty much dark by the time I get home these days, already! . . . sat in the garden briefly. Wow - what a weird worm! Part of its body was still firmly in its burrow, but a good three or four inches of it was hanging over and completely immersed in the water of the countersunk tadpole nursery bucket!! I think having put that bucket in the ground like that, may have been a mistake. I'd thought those tadpoles were all well fed on the large amounts of lettuce I've been putting in. The other day I went out and found a huge slug with only its back end clinging to the side of the bucket, with the rest of its body immersed in the water as it reached in to gorge on the lettuce! I also saw evidence one morning from the dragged out weed, that maybe one of the foraging frogs had been in the bucket!! Oh well - there are STILL some tadpoles in there swimming around. Guess I'd better just leave well enough alone - although, since the pond now appears to be staying nice and clear, (even clear enough to see a frog on the 'shelf' about a foot beneath the surface the other day) it's very tempting to put them all in there! . . . balanced my accounts, eager to make sure my account is remaining secure and hasn't suddenly been emptied by my PayPal registering experiment. All ok-ish, but couldn't balance by an uncleared debit which was obviously the trousers, but also another 1!?? Rang the bank (24hr phone banking) and without even hardly explaining why I was having a problem balancing, the woman on the phone (mind reader?) launched into an immediate explanation of how, IF I'd just for example ordered something on eBay, they do a test 1 debit just to make sure the card and account is valid, but that 1 won't 'actually' be withdrawn somehow. Weird - but at least that means everything is still ok. . . touched base with BB . . . ate half a chicken with four pieces of bread and butter . . . TVd . . .eventually to bed. I hardly dare think it - but I've begun to be aware of a little 'discomfort' in my groin, in the area of my hernia repair!!! Maybe I've just pulled a muscle with all that difficult 'on my back, hands above my head' attic work, but pressing around in a 'medical' way with my fingers, my groin is actually tender to the touch in that area!!! Impossible to tell comparing each side of my groin 'visually' because of my old apendicitis scar keeping everything 'tight' on the other side. Time will tell. If I'd not read on the internet that re-occurence of a hernia is 'not uncommon', I'd not be so worried. :o( pas
26 - Woken by Sally at 8am . . . walked . . . drove to the builders merchants I ordered all my timber from for the first time. Suprisingly poky little place. Before I can cement in those last two 4x4s I need to put in some insulation. It'll be too difficult to do a decent job, right down near the soffit, after the timber is in place. Bought two huge rolls of 100mm fibre glass insulation (11m2). Blimey - that's more expensive than I'd bargained for - and I'll need plenty more! 45.61 for just those two rolls! Crammed them in the back of the car (just) and returned home without a rear view. . . up in the attic, removed all the temporary floor boards and started trying to sweep and vacuum up lots of the dust and rubble littering the top of the lath and plaster ceiling. Filled up a whole heavy sack - full!! . . stopped for a coffee and returned Mums ansaphone messages and touched base . . . cut up and installed a layer of insulation (wore rubber gloves and filter mask - should have worn long sleeves but didn't! Extended ouch!) and then eventually used the cement mixer to mix up a batch of cement and got the 4x4 timber cemented in place. Put it in with a narrow gap between it and the floor, the depth of the floorboards. Temporarily held it in position by resting it on extra floorboards layed on top of the floor! Very awkward, having to try and work around and behind one of the floor joists and the rafters. Scraped up both forearms pretty bad, to add to the fibreglass irritation, but got there in the end. . . very tired. I seem to be physically capable of doing less and less at any one time before needing to collapse into sleep!!!. Loaded the bin up with a few scraps of wood and then, because it was still fairly light and maneouverable, poured in the heavy sack of dust and rubble, ready for tomorrows collection. God bless wheely bins - again. . . defrosted and ate two pastry meat pies and three bags of crisps. . . napped for a couple of hours. Woke all coughing pretty bad. A breathing mask and a beard is not an effective combination! :o( . . . walked - coughing and spitting! . . Well that didn't last long. All the fencing around the roadworks was all destroyed and flattened again. Several moped riders all around the field doing 'Mad Max' impersonations! :o( . . .vacuumed a little . . . TVd . . . touched base with BB . . . TVd and ate bowls of co-co pops before bed before midnight. pas
27 - Woken by Sally around 7:45am. Wow - I feel rough. Aching and headachey! :o( . . walked and found a penny. Spotted a couple of mice, forraging along the hedge next to the building site. Very cute - very fat! Full of mountains of discarded chips and cans of lager no doubt. Got caught out and dampened a little by a shower . . . PCd this, but felt 'woozy' and very tempted to go back to bed! . .happily, the bin men emptied my heavy bin without any hassle (I was worried - looking out watching). Poor guys - whenever they empty my bin, and only ever MY bin, there is always a HUGE cloud of dust that billows out from the back of the lorry all over them!! It's always the same, even when I'm not doing 'building works', because I always empty my bagless vacuum cleaner full of Sally hair and dried doggy mud dust, straight into the bin! . . .cooked up chips, two beefburgers and a bunch of mushrooms for a 'proper' lunch, and then finished off with a handful of chocolate biscuits. . . . trimmed my hair . .TVd . . napped until around 6:45pm! . . .walked and found 2p. Brrrrr . . .TVd . . . BB called . . . ate a cheap tin of Asda spaghetti bolognese with all the (six?) left over crusts defrosted from the freezer . . . TVd and ate chocolate until bed around midnight. How my bad back/scoliosis manifests itself, is often a source of amazement to me. Sitting watching TV tonight, if I leaned my head to the left - my left elbow hurt!!???? lol paas
28 - Up around 7:15am . . .feels cold. Walked in a hoody for the first time in months. Roadworks destruction - again - more!The destruction of the fencing around the roadworks seems to be getting worse and worse. Actually kinda breathtaking when you see the extent of it as you walk down the road. The picture doesn't do it justice. The fencing furthest away from the camera, by the yellow traffic lights, is all bent and twisted and totally destroyed. A long section nearest the camera could easily be just 'tipped back up' - like I've done on a handful of occasions myself! This morning I noticed , the yobs have also destroyed the green light on the temporary traffic lights on the section of contraflow! I witnessed a head on, near miss! (Actually amazing to me it's taken them this long to actually have a go at the lights! These yobs really lack imagination. If I was gonna be a yob and do such stupid stuff - I'd have moved all those barricades and traffic lights up onto the main road and closed it off, or redirected traffic into the school grounds, or the field, or someones driveway, or a cul-de-sac or such, for 'amusement'! Yobbish behaviour seems to me, to have quite a bit to do with lack of intelligence rather than the usual infuriating cop out excuse of 'I'm bored - there's nothing else to do'. There's only 'nothing else to do' if you aren't intelligent enough to think of something - especially in this day and age!!). Detoured on the way home and attempted to inform someone on the building site of the state of the destroyed fence, but mostly the dangerous state of affairs of the 'no green' traffic lights. Some 'Irish navi' type said he'd have a look later. . . PCd this . . .worked in the attic and actually managed to cement in the lower rear 4x4 without as much hassle as it was to put in the front one. Slightly more space around near that rear timber so I left the cleaning out of the debris and the insulating for another time. . It's gonna take a while (if my repairs to it last that long) but I'm very slowly starting to get more comfortable with using the cement mixer. Even managed to leave it mixing, unattended, without me getting dizzy looking into it, for a minute or two, while I went and did something else! lolol :o). . . cleaned up and then ate corned beef, mayo, onion, grated cheese and tomato sandwiches with two bags of crisps for a 3pm 'lunch' while watching TV - um - with just a sprinkle of blood on everything where I cut my finger on the razor like corned beef tin, trying to fold it up so nothing (Cats? Foxes?) will get its face stuck in it while it lays outside in the recycling bin. . . napped until around 6:30pm. Must have been the 'old' grated cheese - one of those oh SO rare occasions, I am aware of having dreamed. Dunno why but as I was waking, it seemed important to try and remember that 'one line' at least. I was in-passing, talking to some elderly grey haired woman who I believe was some sort of psychologist/psychiatrist type person. She was referring to some other woman and her behaviour ."She's decided to make that 'normal', for her" she said, in a manner of total acceptance, as though that decision was of course completely acceptable. Hardly earth shattering stuff - but it struck a chord and seemed important at the time. I guess I've decided to make my funny little life, 'normal' for me. What was that little story type thing Sis2 recounted once? Something along the lines of someone asking "but how do you KNOW when you're 'in love'. How do you KNOW if he/she is THE one?" The answer was something like - when you decide so. . .walked in the cold wind and rain, and was very happy to quickly return home! The fencing all around the roadworks has been re-erected, but they haven't bothered to fix the traffic lights!! :o! . . .checked the attic for rain penetration but there was none - although the rain wasn't heavy enough to prove anything yet . . .TVd . . . touched base with BB . . . ate co-co pops . . . TVd the now usual utter rubbish until bed around midnight. pas
29 - Woken by Sally around 7am. . .laced up my new boots, walked and eventually set off on the long walk down to Eastville Park and along the river. Very cold when I started off, with layers of dew dripping from everything. Warmed up a little later, with sunny spells. Did the 'full' walk - down through Eastivlle Park to the lake, along the river, up onto Purdown to sit for a cigarette by the monument (as Sally hared off into the far distance after a squirrel), back down to Snuff Mills and along the river into Oldbury Court, along the river up as far as the old Frenchay bridge and then back up through Fishponds. Very pleasant. Nice boots. :o) Stopped in Morrisons on the way through Fishponds and bought myself yet another couple of ready cooked chickens for 5.50. Stopped off at the baker nearer home and treated myself, again, to a nice fresh thickly sliced farmhouse loaf for 79p. .back across the local field, guys were laying down tarmac on the roadworks. Well - maybe at last they'll be all finished and clear away all the vandalised debris. (Did I mention someone dumped a two seater sofa on the pavement there the other day?) Does anyone care that they don't seem to have bothered replacing the street light they had to remove to do the works? How can they get away with that? Oh yes - with all the yobbish nonsense and drug dealing around there - that's JUST where you need poor lighting!!!!! Grrrr. . . TVd with the cable 'Teleport Replay' facility and watched 'Seaside Rescue' and ate half a chicken with five pieces of bread and butter. Ate chocolate and TVd some more and caught up on the final of the 'Murder Blues' three parter I'd missed the other night, about black on black gun crime in London and operation Trident. Turned out to be a HARD hitting program, that very nearly saw me in tears! Told the behind the scenes tale of the police investigation into the case of some innocent family man who'd remonstrated (as anyone WOULD) with a bunch of yobs who'd crashed a stolen car into his car outside his house. They ended up throwing bricks and stuff at him (all caught on CCTV!!) and then one of then phoned up a mate and told him to turn up with 'his piece'. The 'kid' turned up with a sawn off shotgun, demanded the innocent guy apologise, and then when he wouldn't and indicated it was THEM who should apologise, he shot him in the head- on his doorstep in front of his wife and step daughter!! It was unlikely - but the guy eventually did NOT die - although of course with that much of his brain missing, the person he was, DID die (made me think of the change in Dad after his brain surgery!). Terrible suffering. SUCH admiration for him, his wife (trapped into spending the rest of her life as his 'carer') , and his daughter especially, who's brave testimony was key in getting a conviction. The nauseating scumbag who did it only got 25 years (which seems to mean these days, only half of that as a matter of course!!???). There ARE times when, there is absolutely NO doubt as to an individuals guilt, and a death sentence would be SO right. The guy who'd been shot couldn't see the point in the trial. After all, he said, the damage had already been done to him and his family - for life. He hoped that they would be forgiven - that god would forgive them. Yeah - but he only had half a brain by then didn't he! :o( . . . napped . . . woken around 4pm by BB calling the ansaphone. Got up, returned BBs call and touched base because she won't be around later like usual . . . PCd. YET again, I had to go onto my website guest book and delete somewhere in the region of ten large nonsense entries advertising poker sites! (Deleted something like eighteen yesterday!) Something somewhere happened yesterday - and the number of those entries suddenly increased dramaticly. SUCH a pain and waste of my time having to continually, every single day, log in and delete the damn things. Too much more and I'm gonna have to try disabling the page. :o( 'Almost' funny in a way. Of all the people they could target with their 'texas holdem' nonsense, they end up with me - probably THE single least likely person in the whole of cyberspace to have disposable income to throw away on such a thing!! . . . walked and found 5p. The roadworks hadn't been finished, although a whole new set of traffic lights was stood next to the vandalised ones and two street lights were laying in the field behind the hedge!!?? Bumped into next door walking their dog and had a brief, not unpleasant chat. Their dog WAS out in their garden for an hour the other night (barking) because it had 'been naughty'. Their nice big TV I've seen on their wall as I walk by, of which I'm much jealous, is a 42" plasma (he has another in the bedroom!!?) - although apparantly, they only have a useable lifespan of a couple of years, so he said! Is that right? Well who the hell can afford that then? She is currently on jury service. . .TVd . . . ate toast and bowls of co-co pops. Opened a whole new pack of co-co pops, and eating them in front of the TV, tipped over the packet!! Sally 'hoovered up' the huge pile of them off the carpet. Would have been a neat photo but I was too slow getting the camera, and she was too fast gorging. lol . . . PCd until early, surfing all sorts of nonsense. Actually bumped into a site which gave details of an application for extended opening hours which the local pub had made. As far as I could tell, the gist of it was, opening until 2am all around Christmas and the new year!! :o( . . ate a marmalade sandwich before bed in the early hours. ps
30 - Woken by Sally earlier and then around 7:30am. . .walked and found 5p. Did litter duty (clearing up lots after last nights rugby club training!) and took some childish delight in throwing it all over the fence into the rugby club compound, to 'make a point', although I rather suspect the mountains of rubbish that now litter their car park will continue to simply be ignored. Lots of activity on the road works. Definitely finishing it off, it would appear. Wonder if those two huge street lights laying next to the hedge in the field are just gonna be there for ever more now?. . dabbled around the place clearing up just a little. Balanced my accounts - again. . .Mum called to touch base . . .messed around with the PC text to speech facility and eventually recorded a new outgoing message on my ansaphone using the 'LH Michael' (Stephen Hawkin type) voice. Warned Mum what I'd done and got her to test it. She hated it and said it sounded like a Dalek. Actually, it WAS a bit difficult to understand thanks to my cheap ansaphone. Ended up re-doing it with the 'LH Michelle' voice, cause of that thing where a womans voice is apparantly more easily picked out (hence that old world war two preference for female air traffic controlers). Hang on though - does that still apply if you are female - or gay? To hell with it - it isn't as though I get many calls from women or gay guys is it! Good grief - I'll be worrying about putting multilingual messages on there next, just in case! . . . PCd and searched on Google for more companies doing cheap phone calls to Bahrain for Mum to call Sis2. Ended up with 10p per minute as the cheapest I could find from a couple of companies. Experimented with Planet Numbers and gave Sis2 a call and actually managed to get through on only the second try. (It DOES seem to be the nature of these services, that actually getting a call put through and picked up, is a little more hit and miss and unreliable than a 'normal' more expensive call.) Briefly touched base and then said I'd hang up and get Mum to try it. Gave Mum the access number and waited for her to get back to me to confirm success or otherwise. She apparantly tried three or four times but failed to get through. She tried again and eventually succeeded and had a brief chat with Sis2 at a tiny fraction of the cost it would have been with BT (at around a 1 per minute!) :o) I suggested, just to put her mind at ease, she could ring BT and ask them to confirm how much the call she'd just made had actually cost her. . .. . . cooked and ate four sausages, mushrooms, two eggs and four pieces of bread and butter for lunch. I SO hate wasting stuff, ESPECIALLY food, but I ended up throwing away about half a dozen eggs!! Well - they DID have a best before date of some time last May, and appeared to be rather 'buoyant' when I tested them in a bowl of water!! :o/ (Are they supposed to float or sink when they are 'off'? Can't remember.) . . finally managed to get back through to Mum on the phone (she'd been engaged for ages!). Turns out she'd been on to BT, had ended up talking to someone she could hardly undertsand with an Indian accent, and had received no help at all! Instead, the Indian guy had simply said he couldn't tell her how much the call had been, and then spent ages trying to sel her different contracts and services!! Grrrrrrr! :o( . . rang MY cable/phone company and asked a similar question about the calls I'd made, and was immediately told how much from their computer screen. Easy - as it should have been for BT for goodness sake. Proved the calls WERE charged at around 10p per minute. . . napped until woken by Sally around 6:30pm. . . walked in the drizzle. Well - the roadworks are finally all finished and cleared away. Casualties - one street light less, and two others nearby not working! Walked the extra round the store for milk. When I came back out to Sally, the half cast girl I've had run-ins with before (the one who never goes to school and has thrown her litter AT me) was feeding Sally most of her battered burger from the chip shop! Actually managed a 'less confrontational than usual' word or two. Couldn't help myself asking her, since she never 'actually' goes in to school, why she bothers actually going to the place each day and then just hanging around nearby. She responded that she now DOES go to school. "Nice one. Because they've tightened up on it?" I asked. 'Yes' she said. Made SUCH a nice change to just pass those few words without the usual confrontational nonsense. Only 'just' managed to resist going into 'smartass mode' and getting on my soapbox and gibbering. Kinda wanted her to realise that going to school isn't 'so' much about learning all that academic nonsense that you'll never use (crop rotation in the 16th Century - hard to apply those lessons to my pocket handkercheif back yard - although - I DO have a compost bin! lol). It's more about learning how to do it - how to think, how to put up with the rules and regulations and people and such - um - kinda. . .sat in the conservatory with the outdoor light on as the rain fell harder and the three resident frogs were out a hunting. To confirm my suspicions, one of them hopped across the garden, into the nursery bucket for a minute and then climbed out the other side! Funny - would have been easier to have just gone round. . touched base with BB. The rain fell harder as we chatted so I dashed up into the attic (with my new chordless phone) to check for rain penetration. No sign of any 'yet'. Fingers crossed. :o) . . . nothing on TV I wanted to watch AT ALL!! Ended up surfing for a couple of hours, mostly rural property sites - not a single one of which I could now possibly afford! :o( . . . ate corned beef, mayo, onion and tomato sandwiches with a couple of bags of crisps around midnight. To bed after 1am. ps