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30 - Woke earlier snoozed on then up around 8am. 19C in, 15C out. Sunny with some dewy mist . . . walked BGdns . . .mowed both lawns . . .up the ladder out front to tend to cracks and peeling paint
filled the cracks with a strong cement/PVA mix as best I could
. . did more gardening,
clearing all the ivy and growth from a border in the back garden.
. ended up feeling really rather unwell . . . TVd . . trimmed my
hair and beard etc before getting clean . . . TVd, in need of
food but not feeling at all hungry. . eventually drank a glass of
red wine and ate a meat pastry slice, crisps, banana, two almond
slices and some chocolate . . to bed around 11:30pm.
29 - Up around 8:15am. 19C in, 15C out. Misty. . . walked BGdns. Found (and killed) two fleas on itchy scratchy Bella!!!! So - everything I did the other day, which really was quite literally everything I possibly could do (and pretty much all at once, which you aren't supposed to do), was all to no avail again. I despair. I really do. :o( . . . aimlessly PCd - although inevitably ended up reading about dog fleas yet again. Read various recommendations suggesting it was the only thing that had worked for various people and ended up ordering some 'Advantage' branded anti-flea stuff via Amazon. 'Advantage 400 Spot-On Solution for Dogs (25 - 40kg)' for £13.18. . . TVd . . . ate ham and mayo sandwiches, crisps and biscuits . . napped . . . walked BGdns. A very pleasant evening of clear, star-filled skies and orbitting satellites. Sat around on the high seat for ages . . .TVd . . .ate a banana, meat and pastry slice, crisps and four kipling almond slices . . . to bed around 1:30am.
28 - Up at 8am. 19C in, 16C out. Grey. . . walked the woods and then sat around in BGdns for a while in a murky almost drizzly atmosphere. Eventually back via Mums to have a quick look at the bit of stone in her front garden path she said she needed cementing back in place. . . returned home and gathered up hammer and chisels etc before walking back up with the tools in a rucksack. . chipped away bits of old cement and dug out the soil a bit before then returning home to get a suitable amount of sand chippings and cement from the garage etc. Walked back up with it all in my rucksack again. . cemented the stone back in place as best I could. It did NOT go well. Unfamiliar with Mums watering can, I promptly put far too much water in the cement I'd mixed up. Oh well - it'll just have to do. Pointless worrying about that one silly little bit because every stone in all her garden paths pretty much needs pulling up and relaying properly! . boy oh boy was I uncontrolably all short tempered while doing it all!??? . . chats and coffee in the garden before eventually returning home with my rucsack full of tools etc. . . ate heated chopped onion, ham and grated cheese in lightly toasted finger rolls followed by biscuits . . monitoring the radios, I overheard the council rib 'Oscar 4' finishing for the day, and in fact for 'the season' until next year apparantly. Seemed somewhat ironic to hear the local coastguard wishing them well. When Oscar 4 returns next year, the 'local' coastguard station will be no more. :o( . . napped until around 6:30pm . . TVd/PCd the night away . . . ate bowls of rice krispies before eventually to bed gone 4am.
27 - Poor sleep then back up around 8am. 20C in, 15C out. Grey. . . walked BGdns and then on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater to sit around for a bit before eventually heading back to the inner harbour to sit for my coffee before then home . . . Mum called in with the papers and food donations for chats . . . ate a slab of galal pie, crisps, banana and bsicuits . . slept until 6:30pm . . . TVd . . walked BGdns. A large number of loud, childish acting, drinking young people all around the place ruining the still and quiet evening . . . TVd . . drank a glass of red wine. Ate a large dish of boiled mixed veg with chopped raw onion and half a pint of instant gravy followed later by three mini jam doughnuts . . to bed around 1:30am.
26 - Poor broken sleep then back up around 8:15am. 20C in, 18C out. Sunny spells and threatening skies. .apparantly yesterdays 'controlled burn' wasn't by the coastguards at all. It was being done by the 'rangers' up on Berry Head, so just scrubland clearance etc I guess. . walked BGdns in passing hints of light drizzle feeling awful tired . . .couldn't muster the energy or desire to do anything. Ended up sat in front of the TV watching live news channel coverage of the house of commons debate on authorising the use of air strikes on ISIL in Iraq - whilst sewing up holes in pairs of socks! I have huge numbers of pairs of socks with plenty of wear left in them yet, but most unwearable because of all the toe holes in them. . . ate a banana and then ham, grated-cheese and mayo sandwiches with a very large bag of crisps followed by some chocolate cake with the last dribble of cream . . . slept the afternoon away until around 6:30pm . . . DF called in for arguments and coffee until almost 11pm . . .TVd. Coastguards were out somewhere after midnight dealing with what sounded like some sort of military ordanance (blanks?) just left on the quay not far from the fuel berth for goodness sake. . . ate just a banana and the last little bit of the chocolate cake . . TVd/PCd until almost 4am before to bed.
25 - Back up at 8am. 19C in, 14C out. Mostly sunny. . . lifeboats and fire crews attending a boat fire over Exmouth way it would appear, although all out now I think. . . tu! :o( . . walked BGdns in the warm sun and mostly sheltered from the WSW type breeze. Sat in the sun for my coffee before eventually back via the store feeling ready for back to bed already! Found a metal dog tag on the way to the store, in the name of Fred, with a phone number - so I guess I'll be calling them later to try and return it. . If I wasn't so tired, I'd have been 'almost' tempted to head out towards Berry Head somewhere, when I overheard snippets on the scanner suggesting the local CRTs were perhaps gonna be having a 'controlled burn' (presumably of outdated flares and the like as they occasionaly do). . . PCd this . . phoned the number on the found dog tag and got the persons address. I'll drop it through their letter box later I guess. . . PCd more of this . . . walked the short distance round the block with Bella and returned the found dog tag . . . ate a tin of soup with four crusts of buttered bread followed by a little chocolate . . . napped until teh 7pm alarm . . .TVd . . . cooked and ate bacon, eggs and chips followed by a couple of squares of chocolate . . .TVd/PCd until bed after 3am.
24 - Woke earlier snoozed on for a bit then up around 7:15am. 18C in, 13C out. Sunny spells and threatening clouds. . . walked BGdns under changeable occasionaly threatening skies. Picturesque Polish sailing ship 'Fryderyk Chopin' was moored close-in off the gardens/end of the Breakwater, demanding that pretty much everyone who walked past had to stop and take a photo. lol . played a bit of ball and of course pointed the camcorder at the ship for quite a bit. Had to race for shelter in the nearby searchlight gun emplacement when a squall of HEAVY rain blew in for quite a while, completely obscuring Torquay across the bay, and even almost obscuring the Chopin at times. . it eventually passed and returned to mostly warm sunny spells. Sat around some more and drank my coffee before eventually heading home . . got the car out . . drove with Bella to shop over on the outskirts of Torquay. Briefly left her in the car and bought some replacement curtain track hook/slides for £1.38, in the hope they'll fit my bedroom tracks and act as replacements for the few broken ones I have. Dashed into the nearby Staples and bought a pack of ten 'Suspension File Clips' for £3.49. Returned to the car and then took Bella into the PetsAtHome superstore for dog food supplies and to have Bella go a bit exciteable over the pet rabbits they had on display behind glass at Bella level! Bought a 17kg sack of Wagg Worker for £10, and 48 tins of winalot for £20. . . headed straight back home to unload. . . messed with the suspended file tabs and then the curtains for ages. Turned out the curtain hook/runners did NOT fit the bloody tracks I have, so that was a waste of money. :o( As luck would have it, I unexpectedly found a handful of the size I needed in a collection of such things I had in the garage, so at length I was able to have my bedroom blackout curtains all hanging a bit better than they had been . . .ate a banana and then ham and mayo sandwiches with two bags of crisps followed by some chocolate . . napped until the 7pm alarm . . . drove to walk. Played ball and sat around for ages listening to the local amateur radio club net. Sat in the car for just a while longer before eventually heading home . . . sorted out stuff to put in the wheelie bin for a bit before eventually putting it out. I am trying to be more ruthless and gradually get rid of all the old rubbish I've been hanging onto which absolutely fills the house! . . TVd . . PCd until early and spent a rediculous amount of time ultimately knocking up a very short bit of lacklustre timelapse video of scenes of the Fryderyk Chopin sailing ship from earlier - set to a piece of Chopin piano of course. lol It HAD to be done! Whilst I was doing so, the ship apparantly left the bay under cover of darkness and made passage towards Falmouth . . . ate bowls of rice krispies before to bed around 4am. Difficulty getting to sleep, actually inexplicably feeling cold!?
23 - Woke earlier overheating (and woken by Bella scratching I think), tried to snooze on for a bit then up around 7:35am. 19C in, 10C out. Sunny spells and then misty overcast . . .walked BGdns. Despite the recent £35 spent on that flea collar for Bella, her scratching this morning seemed worse than ever! Sure enough, on close examination she's absolutely running with fleas again/still. I really am absolutely at my wits end with all this. What on earth is the answer? Why is it that no one else seems to have SUCH trouble? They apparantly just pop a flea collar on their dog and the probelm is allegedly resolved. 'I' never had this sort of trouble with Sally (or Sheba even). It's as though Bella particularly attracts them somehow!? This is really getting me down. It's costing me an absolute fortune and all consistantly to no avail. Just money poured down the drain, over and over again!!! :o( So - that's today all taken care of then. I'll be spending the whole day fighting this losing battle all over again. :o( . . .gave Bella yet another 'Johnsons 4Fleas' tablet in a lump of cheese. . thoroughly vacuumed throughout the whole house. . Put the valance from my bed in the wash and eventually out on the line to dry. (That was the only piece of my bedding that didn't recently get washed or replaced for new). . put the immersion heater on for fifteen minutes (£!) and then gave Bella a bath/shower - again - this time using the proper 'DermOpt Thrixsolene Shampoo For Pets'. Managed to keep the plug in the bath until we were done this time, so eventually had the chance to closely inspect the light covering of muck left in the bath when I let the water out. Couldn't see any obvious sign of any killed fleas whatsoever. . . PCd a bit of this . . . dug out two of the expensive flea-fogger smoke-bombs I recently bought, set them up on some dinner plates (just in case of sparks etc, as per the instructions) and put one in my bedroom, the other in the living room. Closed all the windows, made sure all foodstuffs were in cupboards or covered, temporarily tied Bella to the seat in the safety of the front garden, and eventually nervously lit both foggers. No idea why, but they both started up and immediately smoked a LOT more than that first one I'd tried a while ago. Was that first one a bit of a duffer I wonder? Quickly evacuated the house (trying to hold my breath) at around 2pm, and then briefly climbed on top of the garden bench and peered in through the living room window, to make sure all looked safe. Wow - that's a LOT of smoke. That's more like it! Well - that's us out of the house for a minimum of two hours now then. . . walked across town to a small office supplies store, hoping to be able to buy some plastic clip-on 'name' tags for the tops of the suspended files I have my papers in, in my old two drawer filing cabinet in the corner of the PC/radio room. Typical sods law - the store was of course closed. According to a sign on the door, the guy who runs it has passed retirement age, and now only keeps it going as a part-time affair, only open some mornings. Damn. There REALLY are almost NO businesses left in Brixham of any actual use any more at all!! Shocking. .walked down through town and did ask in a couple of card type shops on the way through, but of course none of them had anything of the sort. . . eventually walked on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater, to sit around for a bit at length, deliberately just wasting away the hours. A warm and pleasant summery day . . . wandered around and sat about down by the inner harbour for a bit more, before eventually walking all the way up to visit P across town. Chats and coffee. Eventually headed home with a large amount of donated frozen meat for Bella (or me) from P's freezer! lol . . . home just after 6pm. Wow - the air inside the house was still thick with the smoke from the flea foggers! Shame I couldn't have left things like that for rather longer. Shut the doors to the hallway and upstairs, and tried to retain the smoke upstairs for a while longer. Opened all the windows and doors downstairs to clear things through - and sat in the garden with Bella for a while. (Ooops - I'd forgotten to cover BELLA's food and drink bowls!! Got to them before she did, and threw away her bowl of breakfast dry mix, etc.) Quite a noticeable odor of burning from that toxic smoke! . . .drank a glass of red wine . . cooked and ate four quarter pound burgers in buttered baps followed by plenty of chocolate . . opened the windows and aired upstairs for a few hours. . to bed around 11pm, with the odor of those foggers still quite noticeable in the air!!!
22 - Up around 7:30am. 20C in, 10C out. Sunny . . .walked BGdns with a coffee. Pleasantly cool to start with before things started heating up in the sun . . . put a bit of laundry on then spent the whole morning doing overdue paperwork and balancing my accounts, etc . . .ran out of steam and ended up just aimlessly sitting around/TVing/PCing the whole day away again . . .ate four salami, mayo and grated cheese baps with crisps followed by some chocolate cake with cream . . . to bed around 1am. Bella is scratching as bad as ever.
21 - Up around 8:20am. 20C in, 15C out. Sunny spells and breezy. . . walked BGdns. Wow - that was a stiff NE type breeze, actually feeling quite chilly when in the shade despite having worn my hoody. Eventually carried on along the marina walkway and on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater again as things warmed up and turned to clear sky sunny. Picked up and binned three lots of other peoples dog poo along the way, because they'd just left it in rediculously anti-social places liable to be trod in, and giving all us dog walkers a bad name! I ALSO picked up and binned (carefully, using a poop bag) a dead rat!!!! FFS!! . . the local yacht club was joining-in having some sort of sailing race event called 'Barts Bash' (going on nationwide apparantly) just off Battery Gardens and out into the wider bay, with plenty of yachts, big and small all sailing about. Ended up walking all the way out along to the seaward end of the breakwater and sitting and just watching for a bit, as the bigger yachts all sailed past quite close. Quite an impressive sight actually, with the significant swell on the waters. . eventually all the way back up into BGdns to sit on the top seat in the shade, drink my luke warm coffee and recover from overheating in my hoody in what was now the full hot sun. . back via the store for a few supplies . . . did laundry while PCing. The local newspaper website is now confirming that the young guy who fell from the cliff onto rocks on Friday over by the Kilmory flats, died yesterday morning (after being airlifted to the head injury unit at Derriford I believe). :o( Based on everything I overheard, that WAS inevitable (or if not, probably 'for the best' given the extent of his head injury!) :o( . . . PCd a bit of this . . .briefly loaned a neighbour use of my roof ladder. Also dug out a bit of grass from the middle of the rutted lane out back, and stuck it in a bald patch in the front lawn as an experiment. If it takes, that may well be a useful way of reinstating grass into all the bald patches I have all over the place. There's plenty of it all up the middle of the lane which no one would miss. . . ate haslet in finger rolls with crisps and then a little chocolate . . napped . . .brought launndry back in and put my roof ladder back atop the pergola . . TVd . . drank a couple of glasses of red wine while cooking. Cooked and ate a going cheap chicken breast, roast potatoes, mixed veg and stuffing with gravy. A 'proper' Sunday lunch type late evening meal, and very nice too. :o) . . to bed at 1am.
20 - Up around 8:20am. 21C in, 16C out. Bright but misty grey. . . walked BGdns. Yayy - found a £20 note near our usual lower ball playing seat. I think I'll just be keeping that, rather than start messing around asking if anyone has lost 'something'. . . carried on down to the inner harbour. The sight that met me when I got down there had me quickly pull out my camcorder and start filming. A guy (asian in appearance) was flying a quadcopter/drone from the narrow harbourside walkway right next to the Golden Hind. With people sat at the adjacent cafe tables and with crowds squeezing past as usual, he was flying the thing directly above my and everyone elses heads! I AM a fan of the videos which those things can produce (and I confess I'd love to see the footage he got), but for gods sake, there's a time and a place for such things, and right above everyones heads like that was TOTALLY out of order in my opinion. I filmed the drone and then him a bit, as he soon had the thing descend to within reach, with passers-by stopping (they had no choice) to watch as he did so, etc. He eventually just reached up and plucked it out of the sky. It's the rarest thing in the world for me to go and stick my nose in and approach someone and potentially start trouble, but SO outraged was I by the stupidity of what he was doing (and actually the illegality I believe), that I DID actually walk up to him and tell him how outrageous I thought it was for him to be flying it directly over peoples heads like that! As luck would have it, he kinda apologised as I just turned and walked away after my rant. Of course for quite a long while after that, I felt all terrible about my confronting him and my outburst, but I DO still think he was WELL out of order flying it over people in such a busy 'choke point' area like that. Any sort of mechanical failure at all, and it would almost have been guaranteed to drop and actually hit someone. It amazed me that no one else around seemed as concerned and disapproving of it as I had been. Dunno what to make of all that. Dunno what I'm liable to do if I see a similar circumstance. Is this something that we are all gonna have to get used to? Having these things buzzing around over our heads all the time? I'm not up for that one little bit! I SO need to look up the RF frequencies involved, and program up some radio gear or other in the 'hope' of being able to 'interfere' with them! :o( I'm as yet undecided about whether or not I upload to Youtube the video I took. I 'should' maybe resist? (I AM tempted to - but wouldn't want to cause the guy any 'unpleasantness' as a result - because he WOULD be identifiable from my footage I suspect. Dunno). . eventually continued on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater again. Whilst sat there in my own little self doubting world thinking about drones and the like, I suddenly became aware of little groups of people walking past with purple balloons and signs on their backs. I half heartedly grabbed a snip or two of video, actually just trying to zoom into the signs on peoples backs sufficient to be able to read them and figure out what it was all about. Turned out to be a sponsored walk along the coastal path all the way from the Berry Head hotel to Torquay as part of 'Dementia Awarenss Day'!! Wow - that's a long arduous walk - especially for some of those youngsters and small dogs! Good luck to em! Damn - if I'd known that was happening I may well have actually set out to try and film some of it 'proper'. . . eventually walked all the way back to BGdns before finally heading home to be there for Mum's usual Saturday visit . . . Mum called in with the papers and food donations for chats at length until late afternoon . . . ate a mum donated slice of gala pie with crisps and then chocolate biscuits . . . napped . . TVd (Dads Army) . . . walked FGn quite late and on out to the seat above the breakwater again. Wow, it was really warm out, and hardly a breath of wind for much of the time we were out. Lots of people all outside having a meal at the Breakwater Cafe. Like a full-on warm summers evening - but early dark. . eventually walked all the way back to BGdns, overheating. . sat in the dark in BGdns for ages until well after 10pm before eventually heading home. . TVd briefly before ending up on the PC. .although I had very little footage of them, I eventually decided to edit and upload the snips of the Dementia charity sponsored walkers to youtube. Rather than just bin it, maybe one or two of the particpants would get a kick out of bumping into it and maybe being able to spot themselves? (It ALSO gave me an excuse to do an anonymous post to that local Facebook page, doing my little bit on their behalf of raising peoples awareness of the dementia issue. After a bit of reading up on it, I included:- "According to the Alzheimer's Society 'Dementia UK Second Edition', there are over 40,000 people with early-onset dementia (onset before the age of 65 years) in the UK. The total population prevalence of dementia among over 65s is 7.1% (based on 2013 population data). This equals one in every 79 (1.3%) of the entire UK population, and 1 in every 14 of the population aged 65 years and over.") . all quite ironic really. I am genuinely very much starting to believe, I may well be going that route myself already - forgetting words, forgetting how words are spelt, losing my ability to do things automatically as I used to , etc, etc! :o( . . . ate a chicken and mushroom pastry slice, crisps and kitkat before to bed around 3:30am.
19 - Poor restless sleep then up around 7:45am. 20C in, 16C out. Grey, damp and gloomy. . . BB called to touch base . . . walked BGdns. Sat around drinking my coffee and having a poke with the camcorder at a hunting hawk in the sky over the gardens again this morning. Boy - the number of hours over the years I must have spent trying to get a decent bit of footage of those hawks, but despite all that effort and the fact that they frequently hang motionles in the air on the breeze, I've yet to get enough to make a video of it, to do the scenes justice. Magnificent birds. SO frustrating! Especially at one point this morning when one was in the air after having just caught what looked like a mouse. . back via the store for a few supplies . . . PCd and then PCd this for a bit . . Around 2:35pm a MAJOR coastguard shout started up, with CRTS, both lifeboats and helicopter rescue 106 (weather permitting) all scrambled to head towards the Kilmory flats over Torquay. Initial reports of a 17yr old male having gone over the cliff!!!! Sounds like a real bad one. Ambulances and paramedics attending and police closing the roads. . 14:48-paramedic commencing CPR and defib unit required. 14:50-lifeboats on scene and the ALB doctor in the ILB transferring to the rocks. 14:53-A 'distressed female witness' transferred 'out of the way' to the ALB. Helicopter Rescue 106 en route - eta 15:05. Sit rep confirmed the casualty had fallen from the top of the cliff, to the rocks below. CPR being administered. 15:06-Casualty on board ALB and heading for waiting ambulance at Torquay harbour Bridge Pontoon, with continuous CPR being performed. 15:09-Rescue 106 on scene, standing-by if required (poor vis at Torbay hospital landing site!). 15:17-Land ambulance left Torquay harbor on its way to Torbay hospital with the casualty and the female witness onboard. Rescue 106 released. 15:23-Lifeboats returning to station. . . . :o( . . .ate chopped ham, onion and cheese in two finger rolls with crisps, a banana and some chocolate . . napped . . aimlessly TVd/PCd the evening away. . . ate a meat and pastry slice, crisps, a banana and biscuits . . . to bed around 2:30am.
18 - Woken around 5am by Bella leaving the bedroom. Tried to get back to sleep but I couldn't, overheating badly and expecting the worst downstairs. Eventually got up. Sure enough, Bella had pooped around the kitchen. :o( . cleared up the mess and hosed down tiles in the garden (quite possibly waking neighbours in the process!) despite how rediculously early it still was. NOT a good way to start the day. . Bad temperedly left Bella shut out in the garden and PCd this. 20C in, 18C out and still dark. Well - they were forecasting unseasonably mild temperatures. They sure were right! . . .I STILL haven't fully taken-in what changes they are informing people of already, but the Portland MSI broadcast was indicating that control of certain services was or had already passed to the 'National Maritime Operations Centre, Fareham' ! . . wow - a sudden big thunder clap not far off around 8:30am! Poor Bella, still out in the garden, merely barked a bit. . . walked in what soon turned into torrential rain. Only wearing a light shower coat, I got immediately utterly drenched right through! :o( Another clap of thunder just as we reached the shelter of the lower gun emplacement in BGdns, which was already occupied by another drenched dog walker. . a token bit of ball play for Bella (so much for getting her nice and clean the other day!) before climbing up to sit for chats and my coffee under shelter of the roof alongside 'the' dobermans etc. Didn't hang around for too long because of the curtain delivery thing, so soon walked back home in the pouring rain . . . PCd messing with yesterday's fish video, and letting all my soaking wet clothes slowly dry on me . . . the courier guy (just using his own regular car) delivered the curtains around 10:40am. . finished off the fish spotting video and set the upload to Youtube going before messing with the bedroom curtains. . . took down my old curtains and ended up washing all the filthy tracks and hooks before having a look at the new blackout curtains. Well - that's disappointing. That's really not what I'd imagined they'd be at all. They're kinda stiff with almost some sort of waterproof type feel to them - they are not as white as I'd expected, and the back of them is actually mmuch more of a grey - and they absolutely do NOT 'black out' all the light!! Overall I was pretty disappointed, but I DID end up hanging them at the windows nonetheless. If nothing else, they DO prove that a 'standard' size 90" width of curtains is just about 'acceptable' at those windows (although wider would make for a better fuller, more pleated look). They DO of course make the room quite a bit darker, so I suspect for the time being at least, they ARE gonna remain at the windows on their own, instead of my old not wide enough ones. . . did laundry and got the bedroom and bathroom shower curtains out on the line to dry for a short while . . pottered around cleaning in the bathroom a bit . . . ate a banana, ham, mayo and grated cheese sandwiches with crisps, and then a little chocolate . . napped until around 6:30pm . . . TVd . . .fitted Bellas new flea collar . . . drank a glass of red wine. Cooked and ate fried potato with boiled mixed veg in melted butter . . . TVd until to bed after 2am as distant thunder and lightning passed to the south.
17 - Woke earlier, snoozed for a bit then up around 8:40am. 20C in, 17C out. Bright but misty grey again . . walked BGdns in the stiff breeze. Oh for f***s sake - I saw a flea on Bella! So despite all I've done, she's STILL infested (or maybe just picked some up on the morning's walk?)! :o(. . .eventually returned home to find I'd missed my blackout-curtain delivery. Damn, damn, damn. Worryingly the card which had been put through the door was from some courier I've never heard of - so just walking down town to the post office tomorrow to pick it up wasn't gonna be possible!! Ended up ringing the mobile number on the card a couple of times before eventually getting to speak to the delivery guy. It'd be delivered again tomorrow somewhere between 10 and 11am - so that's tomorrow morning all 'set aside' then! :o(. . . mowed both lawns and pottered in the garden for a while . . PCd and ended up knocking up the Bella Bathtime video and uploading it to Youtube . . rang the vet surgery across town and confirmed I could pop over and buy one of their outrageously expensive 'only available from the vet' flea collars . . ate tuna, mayo and chopped onion sandwiches with two bags of marmite crisps . . . walked to the vet across town and bought the tinned 'Seresto' flea collar. A few pennies change from £35!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :o( I just BET it ends up being as effective as everything else I've tried - i.e. absolutely not at all! . walked on down to the harbour and then on out to the slipway by the lifeboat station for some ball throwing and swimming for Bella before heading up the short distance to the seat above the end of the breakwater for some idle sitting. . eventually headed all the way back and round the inner harbour and on out towards BGdns. Oh wow - all alongside the coastal path along the edge of the outer harbour, there were schools of quite large fish all seemingly leisurely hanging around!?? I've never before seen scenes like that since I've lived here. I have of course seen shoals of small ones all jumping and being attacked by gulls and the like, but never groups of such large ones like that. They were all well in excess of a foot in length and weren't being bothered by any of the gulls, or even a passing seal. Of course I just HAD to have a go at filming them didn't I. lol So - there was me all hanging around on that short walk for almost an hour in the end I think it was. Not the easiest thing to do - film fish swimming free and unmolested in the water, but I think I got few worthy snips in the end! That of course appealed to MY (Buddhisty) version of 'going fishing', which avoids the causing of any suffering to any living thing. i.e. just sit by the water until you SEE a fish, and by such seeing, consider it successfully caught. :o) I reckon today I 'caught' loads. lol :o) . . a brief sit on the high seat to recover from the climb up into BGdns before finally heading home . . . TVd . . ate a banana, a very large bag of crisps, bowls of rice krispies and chocolate . . utterly exhausted and falling asleep in the chair, to bed around 11:30am.
16 - Up around 8:25am. The first thing I remember upon waking before I'd even opened my eyes was that I was kinda feeling dizzy and disorientated!!!!!!? What the f*** is this?!!! Woke at the PC feeling pretty much the same and really very not right at all!???? 19C in, 16C out. Grey again. . .walked BGdns, still feeling really rather worryingly 'unwell' - but 'all in my head' kinda. Extremely unsettling. Even had me wondering if what claimed Dad could be a genetic weakness and something that'll beset me in time! :o( Weirdly I didn't feel 'quite' so bad when actually walking, so I eventually ended up walking all the way out to the seat above the end of the breakwater yet again. A coachload or two of VERY young (primary?) schoolkids were all visiting the harbour, all dressed in high vis waistcoats. High vis waistcoats and hijabs in some cases FFS! At least one in a wheelchair too! . What an awesome responsibility for the very small handful of teachers that accompanied them all. All things considered, I reckon it's gotta be a pretty high risk place for such a large/young group to visit! . eventually returned to a seat near the coastguard station in the inner harbour to sit at length and drink my coffee before finally heading home - feeling not 'quite' as bad as earlier, but still definitely not at all right. Hard to explain - but for sure, I wouldn't have been in a fit state to drive for example. :o( . . . TVd for a bit, simply not really fit for anything else - but gradually feeling not 'so' bad. . . eventually ended up bathing Bella in the bath with some regular shampoo again. Dare I think we have 'turned a corner' with the flea infestation? Probably not, but she does seem to be maybe just a little less scratchy at the moment. The reason for wanting to bath her was to simply try to get some of the dirt off her skin and the bits of old flaky skin out of her fur. It didn't go 'particularly' well this time, but it DOES seem to have improved her further. MUCH toweling down and grooming with a brush and her fine toothed flea comb afterwards eventually had her come up all nice and soft to the stroke for a change. . . ate tuna, mayo and chopped onion sandwiches with cheese and onion crisps followed by many dark chocolate biscuits . . . napped, but poorly, and woke and got back up before 6pm. Feeling 'better' than earlier at least thank goodness . . . TVd the national and local news for a bit . . . walked FGn and then on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater as darkness fell. As we reached the area near the seat, the pilot boat was just returning from having rendezvoused with the Bahamas registered passenger ship Hanseatic as she was leaving the bay all lit up with fairy lights in the dark. The latest cruise ship to have spent an afternoon visiting Torquay apparantly. Had a poke with the camcorder - but of course it was pointless. That camera is SO useless in low light. :o( . . . sat around in the dark for quite a while before eventually heading all the way back around the largely VERY quiet harbour (except for the bunch of schoolkids mustered near the Grenville House activity centre being given instructions on what time to go to bed later etc. lol) and on out and up to the high seat in BGdns for more sitting and drinking of my coffee in the pitch black before finally heading home . . . TVd drinking a glass of red wine (and monitoring the living room scanner) until the local coastguard response teams being paged, eventually saw me migrate to the PC and radios. Apparantly a sick crewman needed taking off a fishing vessel which had come into the harbour/fish market near the yacht club. He was transferred on a stretcher to an ambulance at around 10:30pm and was on his way to Torbay hospital by 10:39pm. . . PCd a bit of this. My blackout curtains have allegedly been despatched. . . A bit of a lift on the VHF radio it would appear (marine band. I generally don't even bother monitoring the stupifyingly pointless/boring/incessantly repetative amateur band these days!) . Plenty of Solent coastguard, french 'Cherbourg traffic', and even at 23:47 on channel 16, Jersey coastguard were plainly audible announcing their up-coming MSI broadcast . . .oven heated and ate chicken drumsticks with four pieces of bread and butter followed by chocolate. Dared to let Bella have all the bones . .to bed around 3am.
15 - Up around 8:45am feeling tired out and good for nothing. 19C in, 15C out. Grey and breezy again. . . walked Bgdns and then back via the store for a few supplies . . . TVd a bit before ending up back on the PC surfing looking at curtains yet again! Seem to have done far too much of that of late, just going round and round in never ending circles getting nowhere! I've increasingly gotten a bee in my bonnet about my bedroom bay-window curtains of late. I'm STILL using the old dirty light beige curtains from the little living-room bay window back in Bristol in there! (Good grief - how many years is that now?) First off, they really don't fit the window. They 'JUST' meet if I pull them taught all the way around (which looks awful of course). On top of that, they let SO much light through (day AND night), they really are little better than net curtains in terms of blacking out the room for sleeping. They also seem to encourage the room to heat up real quick on sunny mornings, meaning I'm continually waking up overheating. Blah blah blah - anyway, I think it's well overdue that I try to come up with something better. Sadly, the ceiling over the bay isn't straight, so no matter what I do it isn't going to be particularly nice to look at or easy to pull the curtains back and forth without the tops fouling the stippled ceiling (I actually NEVER open them - cause I only go in there to sleep, so why bother!)!! For that reason as much as the obvious (£s), it makes no sense to me to stump up a small fortune and have 'proper' curtains made-to-measure. Following my hours of research surfing such things <spit>, I think my best bet is to go for 'standard sized' ready made curtains - in the full knowledge they'll NOT be as wide as would be 'ideal', and that they'll hang down lower than desireable (given Bella's bed beneath and her tendancy to 'interfere' with the bottoms. If not for her bed being there, I'd have them hang as low down near the floor as I could get!). So - I'm looking at going for standard 90" wide, 72" drops (to fit the bay window which would kinda 'just' be covered by something along the lines of a >56" drop x >64" wide - each curtain). The bad news is, I HAVE set my heart on continuing with the everything plain white theme I have going on in there (with the bed linen, etc). THAT means that whatever ready made curtains I may end up with (cheap or not), I WILL have absolutely NO choice but to stump up a load more cash for a set of thermal blackout curtain linings in the hope of actually being able to lessen the amount of heat and light passing through them! . . so - after spending the whole morning and well into the afternoon surfing such nonsense, I eventually bit the bullet and went ahead on e-bay and ordered a pair of 'Ready Made White Blackout Linings Blackout Thermal Curtains 90"w x 72"d' for £20.94 inc postage. I resisted actually going ahead and buying the (cheap/thin) curtains I was looking at. Before I actually blow a load more money on the idea, I think I need to see how that 'standard size' will work out. I ALSO want to see just exactly what 'blackout curtain linings' ACTUALLY look like and if they are the same back and front and can be hung on the curtain track like normal (kinda round the wrong way for linings) rather than hung on the backs of other curtains like they should be. In the back of my penny pinching mind, I'm wondering if they may actually serve me well enough as curtains on their own! (they surely can't look any worse than what I've been living with all these years?! lol) Anyway - FINALLY money spent (part 1?), so we shall see. (God I HATE spending money on such 'silly' things!) . . . PCd this . . .ate a banana and then ham and mayo rolls with two bags of crisps (marmite flavour for a change) followed by some chocolate . . . napped. Forgot to set the alarm and didn't wake until just after 8pm! Jeeze - the house seemed full of smoke! Someone nearby was having a bonfire or something similar, and the smoke appeared to be engulfing the whole area - and definitely in my direction and in through the slightly open bathroom window. Not sure if it was because of that or my heavy vaping today, but I had a REAL hard time with blocked and streaming sinuses this evening. :o( . . damn - I missed it! According to posts on the local Facebook page, somewhere around 5pm when I was alseep, a Hercules aircraft did an outrageously low, banking flight right over the town earlier. . . TVd a bit and then PCd the evening away, largely trawling all local e-bay adverts - and then boats and bikes - just for 'fun'!? . . ate ham and mayo rolls with two bags of crisps followed by the last of the mum donated coffee sponge cake . . to bed around 3am.
14 - Up around 8:30am. 20C in, 15C out. Grey and breezy. . .walked BGdns and then on down to sit around in the inner harbour to drink my coffee and watch the world go by for quite a long while before back up through town past all the Sunday food stalls set up along the high street (making it VERY difficult to walk through!). They seem to be doing a good trade, but jeeze - the prices of everything!! All seemed absolutely astronomical to me! . . . PCd poking at some bits of video but then ended up surfing all manner of unpleasant nonsense. This ongoing ISIL/ISIS beheading business in the news has been deeply distressing to me. I can hardly bear to watch the news anymore. I certainly can't go near anything which shows images of the victims. WHAT suffering. What utter barbaric horror. It's really disturbed me that such things are going on, and yet people seem to be running around engaged in and more focused on their usual 'trivia/petty nonsense' as I see it. It's as though we are all pretending that we aren't actually 'AT war' already! I strongly believe we all need to wake up to the threat we really ARE all facing! Arguably a greater threat to 'civilisation' than we've EVER before faced I believe. . anyway - carefully avoiding anything to do with videos, and 'looking away' from many of the pictures I had no choice but to encounter, I ended up unhappily surfing, reading-up on all manner of ISIL and muslim related 'stuff'. THAT was bad enough. I also somehow ended up reading-up on the history of beheadings and then scientific commentary on the actual way in which such people encounter and experience their death. Based on all I read, and god knows why I felt 'obliged' to, the bottom line of the horror of all that was, such people really do 'experience' it - and potentially for quite some considerable time - after! HORROR! I don't know much about much, but sometimes I feel as though I know far too much about quite a lot. . it may have been noticeable that over the years I've kinda deliberately stayed away from commenting on here about some of the politics and horrific world events that have been going on (through fear perhaps?) . Well - I feel inclined to 'nail my colours to the mast' right now. With regard specifically to ISIL and their type, and anyone who supports them - search them out - and kill them. Kill them all. Wherever they can be found, with whatever methods we can muster, kill them - kill them NOW! He who hesitates in this, may well be lost - for THEY do NOT hesitate. We can be all apologetic and worry about the human rights issues AFTER this threat to humanity has been eradicated. -//- :o( . (As a bit of an aside, I DO wonder how long it'll be before we have the first recorded incidence of a terrorist attack and deaths (on our soil?) by way of a commercially available quadcopter/drone, like everyone is buying and playing with of late? The better, cheaper, more widely available and more autonomous those drones get, and the more payload they begin to carry, the sooner it will inevitably happen. It must surely only be a matter of time? It would appear they are already being used by ISIL in the middle east for attack planning and surveillance, etc!!). . . ate two corned beef, mayo, grated cheese and onion finger rolls with crisps followed by some mum donated coffee sponge cake . . napped . . . TVd/PCd until early . . . ate a chickena nd mushroom pastry slice, crisps, banana and sponge cake before to bed gone 4am.
13 - Up around 8:40am. 20C in, 16C out. Grey. . . walked BGdns and then carried on down to the harbour to see what sort of crowds were about for the Fishstock event in the new fishmarket. £5 entry and lots of crowds, so 'not for me' of course. Actually didn't seem 'particularly' busy, but I guess it was still pretty early. . wandered around mostly away from the gathering crowds for quite a while. Couldn't resist eventually heading back around the harbour, to try to get a picture of the 'dog creche' that had been set up on the end of the inner harbour quay. Dogs apparantly weren't allowed in the actual fishmarket/Fishstock events area (another reason for it NOT to be for me), so some pens had been created for people to temporarily leave their dogs in a safe environment whilst they attended. Not something I can imagine many people wanting to do, but a great idea by someone nonetheless I thought. The reason I wanted to get a picture was because I thought it was funny - to have the shop sign in the background. 'Harbour Bites'. Dogs - bites? Oh well - 'I' thought it was funny. :o) . . along with the usual Saturday market stalls under the old fishmarket roof, was a stall set up publicising the appalling treatment the 'orientals' dish out to various animals, and raising funds to fight to change that. Dogs and cats still being food of course!!!!!! They were also highlighting specifically the plight of bears and their treatment. An old guy was sat on a seat on the harbourside near the Golden Hind replica, all dressed up in a bear suit, waving at people as they walked by! Just a rather bizarre image I thought, and couldn't resist grabbing a photo as I sat nearby drinking my coffee. I regret not having had the energy or nerve to get Bella to pose next to him. I should have done, because she really does look SO much like a bear at times, and looked very much like that guy in his costume. lolol. . . Mum called in with the papers and food donations . . . ate a hunk of gala pie with crisps and then biscuits . . napped. . until around 6:30pm . . . walked FGn and then on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater for quite a while. . eventually back to BGdns to sit in the dark for ages feeling pretty down. . PCd . . . returned BBs ansaphone call from earlier . .ate the remaining chunk of gala pie with crisps and then soem bowls of co co pops . .to bed at 3am.
12 - Up around 7:40am, woken by Bella gently woofing as someone put yet another charity collection sack through the letterbox. 20C in, 15C out. Grey. . woke at the PC. Found myself 'welling up' when I bumped into and read reports on the Manchester dogs home fire!! Horrific to imagine. :o( . . walked BGdns in a stiff easterly breeze again. Lumpy waters in the bay and no ferries again I think. Alongside the outer harbour as we passed by, a guy with a rod fishing from the rocks caught himself a small seabird!! :o( He reeled it in, untangled it and successfully released it. I 'think' it was ok, but it upsets me a lot to see stuff like that. . Aimlessly walked out to the seat above the end of the breakwater. When exactly did just walking about a bit become such a significantly pain inducing experience for me?!! :o( . . A new portacabin type of shop for selling stuff in aid of the RNLI has been (strangely) placed in front of the lifeboat house, and appeared to be having its official opening this morning. A little crowd of (mostly elderly) people were all thronging around . . sat on a seat in the inner harbour for my coffee. What looked like an insurance assessor was climbing over, inspecting and photographing the salvaged motor boat, still in strops under the crane on the quay . . back via the store for a few supplies. I feel 'in need' of burgers . . . drank a glass of red wine and cooked and ate four quarter pound burgers and fried onions in buttered baps . . . napped until around 7pm . . .mum called briefly . . TVd/PCd the night away. Felt rather unwell for much of that time . . . ate a banana and a box and a half of going out of date/cheap Kipling almond slices before to bed just after 4am. Ian Paisley died this day.
11 - Woke earlier, tried to snooze on for a bit then up around 8:20am. 20C in, 16C out. Bright but mostly cloudy to start with . . .walked BGdns actually wearing my hooded fleece, because the easterly wind was so strong (15mph gusting 20s) and almost chilly in the shade. Quite a swell on the waters of the bay again. No ferries today again - and in fact, very little out on the water as a result of the conditions. . . eventually headed on down around the harbour (high tide) and on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater again, to sit for quite a while and sup a bit of my coffee, watching waves along the seaward side of the breakwater occasionaly throwing some surf over the top. Eventually cleared to warmer and mostly sunny. . headed back into the inner harbour to sit on a seat and finish my coffee. A very large number of Coastguard vehicles were unusually all parked around on the harbourside near the coastguard station (because their carpark was also full). They must have been having a big gathering/meeting of some sort. Discussing the up and coming station closures perhaps? I haven't fully 'registered' the details in my mind yet, but I HAVE been aware that the recent Portland MSI broadcasts have been informing people of a couple of the station closures already! :o( . eventually headed home in the hot sun . . . PCd some of this - for hours! . . . ate corned beef, mayo, grated cheese and onion sandwiches with crisps, a banana and some biscuits at around the same time the coastguard response teams were called out to an 80 year old woman who'd fallen and required medical evacuation with a leg injury over Torquay way. The medivac helicopter was on scene for a while but eventually left the CRTs to do the stretchered evacuation on foot to a waiting ambulance. . . napped until shortly before 7pm. Real trouble waking - cause I really just didn't want to! . . .TVd . . dashed out onto the front step with the camcorder in hand around 7:30pm when someone a short distance across town was flying what can only have been a quadcopter/drone. Dunno what type it was, but it had a very noticeable array of lights on it. The very bright white light was dominant. Even my next door neighbour was drawn out onto his doorstep by the sight of it too. Well - that totally clinches it. That 'UFO' type light in the sky I saw a while ago was definitely one of those. Given how short a period of flight-time/battery life they have, I don't understand why you'd want the thing all lit up with lights like that? . . returned to the TV and feeding Bella. All of a sudden I could see a face outside the front straining to look in through the living room window!! Turned out to be DM calling in to say hello. Peering in through the window like that rather than just walking up and ringing the doorbell seemed very 'inappropriate'. I VERY much did NOT like that. :o( . TVd and chatted over a coffee . . . PCd hours more of this whilst drinking coffee and eating the handful of jaffa cakes DM had left . .weird how some of the videos I've done and put on Youtube 'I' reckon are SO 'valuable', and yet no one every looks at them - and then I do a hastily thrown together silly one like the grasshopper video, and it suddenly somehow takes off in relative terms (after I 'submitted' it to Spotted Brixham on facebook) and now it has over five hundred hits already!?? I'll NEVER understand 'people'. . . ate bowls of co co pops before finally to bed around 4am. Donald Sinden died this day.
10 - Up around 8:25am. 20C in, 18C out. Sunny. . . walked BGdns. A rather chilly easterly breeze putting quite some underlying swell on the waters of the bay. Even the ferries appeared to have cancelled operations for the day. Played ball and then headed to the higher seat for my coffee. Was just about to start drinking it when I caught sight of the MMC barge 'Solidarity' towing a submerged boat with floatation bags attached to the rear, through the outer moorings and then back towards the inner harbour. Presumably the one which had sunk on Sunday, so I guess they're gonna be raising it today. Damn - I couldn't resist. I just HAD to start pointing the camcorder at it didn't I! . . ended up walking along the clifftop road following its progress and filming a few snips, before eventually heading down into the inner harbour. . to cut a long story short, I ended up stood in the baking hot sun on the harbourside near the coastguard station amongst lots of onlookers, filming some more as the MMC guys worked at raising the sunken boat. Their diver went down and repositioned the stern floats and reinflated them to bring the boat to just below the surface. Turned out it wasn't a yacht at all. It was in fact an expensive motor boat. Strops were placed around the front of the boat and the crane on the back of the 'Solidarity' work boat started to raise it further. This sort of gradual pivoting of it up against the float bags to a point where pumping out could start, was exactly the same sort of procedure I saw when they salvaged the sunken yacht on 19th August. Unfortunately it was at this point that the strops slipped and came off, and the boat stayed just beneath the water. By this time the tide was going well out, and it appeared that a decision was made there wasn't going to be enough water beneath them to carry on as they'd planned. Bizarrely, Solidarity actually slowly towed the still sunken motor boat back out of the inner harbour and a short distance away out towards the main outer harbour fareway before turning around in a big circle and heading back towards the town pontoon - almost as they they were going for a little underwater cruise! They then tied up to the town pontoon and everything went quiet. It looked very much as though they were all stopping for their lunch - and 'I' totally got the impression they were liable to be waiting for the tide to turn and the depth of water in the inner harbour to return before continuing. Hot tired and thirsty in the full sun, with at least half my camcorder batteries spent, and with a good couple of hours until the tide turned and returned, I figured I'd head home, charge batteries, have a rest, grab a drink and a bite to eat, and then maybe come back down in the hope of catching the salvage continuing. . Headed home via the store for a few supplies . . .quickly put batteries on charge. Ate going cheap/off mini pork pies, cheese and onion pastry slices, crisps and a banana . . . eventually headed back out across FGn and down to the harbour again, hoping to catch more of the raising of the motorboat. Oh no! Damn, damn, damn!!!!!! I'd missed it!!! The boat was already fully afloat, moored alongside the 'new' ferry pontoon with Solidarity alongside! Wow - they didn't waste any time doing that then. They must have just stopped for a quick lunch break and then got right back to work. I'm guessing they made use of the fact that the ferries weren't running today to use the deeper water near the ferry pontoon, so as not to have to wait for the tide to return like I'd thought they would have to. Boy - I could kick myself for having missed capturing that on camera. Without the actual raising of it, that totally makes utterly worthless all that filming I did earlier. :o( . SO annoyed with myself for having SO badly misinterpreted/misjudged things. :o( . . . aimlessly walked out to the seat above the end of the breakwater and sat around there for quite a while, feeling very 'annoyed' and disappointed. :o( . . Eventually headed back. I DON'T believe it! In the relatively short time I'd been sat out above the end of the breakwater, the sunk/raised motor boat had been moved into the inner harbour and lifted out of the water, and still in its crane strops, left on blocks on the town jetty!! I'd missed it all - AGAIN!!!! I couldn't believe it. Oh boy, how frustrating was THAT! I dunno - sometimes things (with the camcorder etc) just work out for me like there's magic going on. Today was the COMPLETE opposite, as much as it could possibly be! Unbelieveably disappointing and frustrating to me, especially after having put in SO much effort earlier, etc. Oh well - serves me right I guess. I AM aware that my patheticly fragile 'ego' is dangerously linked to (the pointlessness of) capturing stuff on camcorder and being able to share it on youtube (facebook), etc. Serves me right to be reminded of how fragile, absurd and utterly pointless all that is. To coin a phrase - 'get a f***ing life, *******'!! :o( . headed home feeling pretty down about stuff. Half way up the steep steps to FGn, I ended up stopping, watching and filming as both lifeboats (the ILB first, followed a short while later by the ALB) were called out on a well meaning false alarm over the Torquay side of the bay. Initial suggestions of a young kayaker in difficulty, but I think it turned out to be someone not so young, and happily fishing from their kayak. The lifeboats pretty much went all the way across there before just turning around and heading straight back through the underlying heavy swell. On the way back, the all weather lifeboat appeared to act as something of a 'wavescreen' against the easterly swell for the following ILB. Some neat head-on shots as they returned I thought. . . eventually headed back home. Felt utterly exhausted. TVd - monitoring the radios as the all weather lifeboat was called out yet again - pretty much replaying the call of earlier, but this time in earnest. A kayaker was in trouble, had been in the sea for some considerable time, and was unable to get back into his kayak. He was rescued by the lifeboat and transferred to a waiting ambulance at Torquay harbour. . . PCd and somehow ended up just listening to multiple snippets of music much of the time. I was actually searching for a way of trying to make 'some' use of ANY of the mass of footage I'd recorded earlier throughout the day, but try as I did, I just couldn't find ANY way to make ANY use of ANY of it. SUCH a shame (and a terrible waste of SO many hours effort!). I guess I really am gonna simply end up deleteing it all, despite how 'appealing' and spectacular some of those scenes appear to MY eye. Damn. I HATE just deleting footage - just throwing away 'precious captured moments in time'! :o( . .Oh wow - comments on the local 'Spotted Brixham' and then 'Brixham Police' facebook pages confirmed that the old 'tramp' lady who lives on the street around the harbour was (finally!) kinda 'sectioned' earlier, and taken away in an ambulance for medical treatment/assessment! "Today, a homeless, elderly Brixham lady was detained under the mental health act and taken to a place of safety for a full mental health assessment by health care professionals, following several reports from stakeholders and members of the public raising serious concerns regarding her physical health and recent worrying behaviour. Deciding upon whether she has full mental capacity to make informed, rational decisions will determine what further action will be taken." With hindsight, I think I probably heard and saw the ambulance when I was down there earlier. That woman has been a 'bit of the furniture' down around the harbour and town ever since I've lived here. I had noticed of late that she really was in a seemingly increasing terrible state. Whatever her mental state, that must be an awful shock to suddenly have your freedom taken from you like that! Fingers crossed for her. :o| . . . ate the remaining couple of mini pork pies and cheese pastry slice, crisps banana and quite a lot of chocolate before to bed around 1am.
9 - Poor broken sleep again, then up at 7:15am. 19C in, 11C out. Sunny. . .woke at the PC with the radio on as usual. A couple of warships, one Dutch and one Belgian have been hanging around here and there in Lyme Bay for the last few days. According to the AIS site they were moored off the coast between Berry Head and Dartmouth this morning (last night). On the radio an 'irate' fisherman was giving one of them a hard time (the Dutch one I think) because they'd allegedly moored in amongst all his crab pot gear and he was concerned he'd be losing some of it and wanted to know how they'd be compensating him if he did. The warship pretty soon lifted its anchor and confirmed no damage was done. lol . . . walked Churston Cove (for Bella to swim after her ball), the woods (for Bella to chase squirrels) and then headed back to Battery Gardens like usual for more ball playing and for me to sit and drink my coffee. Heading for our usual ball playing seat, I was stopped in my tracks on the path overlooking Fishcombe Cove, by the sight of tree surgeons moving their equipment into place behind the little cafe and below the new apartments building site. They were obviously about to have a go at cutting down the last remaining 'blocking the view' tree on the building site cliff above the cove. I'd missed getting any of the previous felling on camera, so was determined to get at least that last big tree. Ended up sitting round there for hours having a poke with the camcorder. . I got my shots of the felling, although it ended up kinda going down in two parts, so wasn't as much a spectacle as it could have been. To my inexperienced eye, the first and largest part appeared to go a little awry and looked pretty dangerously close to falling over the cliff, but the workmen seemed to take it all in their stride and acted as though all was in order, and just carried on with the next part. . turned out they were not only doing just that one big tree on the cliff edge. They were also taking down the ones alongside the fence/path down to the cove! Ended up having to hang around for even longer - and started to have my usual hassle with running out of camcorder batteries!! . . saw two more trees felled and 'just' managed to get something of it on camera, awkwardly filming straight into the increasing direct sun! . . . treated myself to a cup of coffee outside the cove cafe 'hut' when all the workmen disappeared, presumably for their lunch, before eventually heading home. I didn't particularly want to head home because there were still a couple of awkward trees to fell alongside the path down to the cafe and cove, but with all my camcorder batteries pretty much run out, I had little choice. :o( . . . immediately put batteries on charge as soon as I got home! Damn - I've GOT to buy some new camcorder batteries! :o( The expensive rechargeable Duracells I recently bought WAS money well spent. SO much better than all the old rechargeables I've been using for so long. . . ate Mum donated slices of cold beef in sandwiches with crisps followed by a banana and some chocolate . .been having 'difficulty' with my vaping of late. Seem to have been getting less and less 'satisfaction' from my DIY mixed e-liquid. While waiting for batteries to charge, I finally bit the bullet and filled up a new atomiser to try. Aha - THAT's what's been going on. The atomiser I've been using for SO long, is clearly VERY long past it's best and LONG overdue for replacing/binning. Can't complain I guess. I've been using that old one for way WAY longer than I've read they 'should' last. At least I now know what to look for/expect when it needs replacing through normal useage. . . eventually loaded up with all my recharged batteries and headed back out to BGdns. Things were still all going on with chopping up the felled trees, but the afternoon sun was now unfortunately in the perfectly wrong position for me to film any of it. Damn. :o( . . ended up heading down around the blazing hot harbour and aimlessly carried on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater to sit around (in a bit of shade) for quite a while. . out in the bay on the deep water anchorage the two warships were anchored up. Poked at them with the camcorder on maximum zoom for just a bit. In the top image I've included here, the Fairmile on its way back to Torquay passed-by in the foreground - as did a seagull of course. lol On the left was Netherlands warship HNLMS Makkum (M857) and on the right (slightly closer in) was Belgian warship Narcis (M923) with what looked like maybe a sea boat hanging off to one side of her aft deck. Able to occasionaly 'just' see people walking around on deck, as these things go, they both appeared to be fairly 'small' ships. While I was sat there listening on the scanner, they were having a bit of conversation between them. I couldn't understand any of what was said of course, EXCEPT that the term 'barbecue' would appear to be the same in all languages. lol I don't know if they really were having a berbecue or if they were just joking, but if they were, it was pretty much the perfect hot and sunny weather for one. I wonder if maybe they'd somehow got hold of some crab from somewhere earlier? lol . .ended up continuing to play around with the camcorder (actually crawling along on the ground at one point!! What must passers by have thought!! lol) when I unexpectedly spotted a grasshopper on the concrete in front of me. It made its way to a small tuft of grass and started having a munch on one of the blades before then turning around and doing something weird with its rear. It actually continued behaving like that for absolutely ages, so it was obviously something very important to it. I know nothing about grasshopper anatomy, but can only assume from its actions that it was actually laying eggs!? By getting a suitable distance away from it, and then putting the camcorder on full zoom atop my 'rice bag camera mount', I managed to get some pretty amazing close up shots of it I thought. At length it wandered off out of my sight. Well - THAT was unexpected! Ooooh - I'm just gonna HAVE to make a silly 'Kung Fu' video out of THAT aren't I. lolol . . . eventually headed all the way back to BGdns. Good grief - the woodsmen were all STILL working on cutting up the felled trees. That's a long day of hard nasty work! Their tractor trailer was all loaded up with the larger trunks, whereas all the smaller stuff appeared to have been 'chipped' and left in situ. The light was still all wrong, and people were sitting at the only viable vantage point, so I couldn't film anything worth recording as a 'bookened' to the earlier footage. . Ended up sat on the higher seat having a vape and a drink. I probably should have thought things through and anticipated it, but I didn't - and missed getting some shots of the tree felling crew all driving past, complete with the tractor and trailer-load of big tree trunks! It also hadn't occurred to me they were simply going round the big detour of the one way system, and I pretty much missed getting a shot of them as they drove past me again as I was walking home. Shame. :o( Dunno if all that time-consuming filming was actually worth doing earlier. Not sure what, if anything, I'll be able to make of all that footage? :o( Shame though - cause it IS one of those things which is a 'once in a lifetime' type of moment. Those trees were quite probably older than me, and just like that, they were cut down and that scene has now been changed for evermore. Sadly, because of the light and poor viewing angles and 'whatever', I'm not sure the footage I recorded really does all that justice and is worth bothering with? :o( . . . TVd . . PCd the 'unexpected' grasshopper footage for hours before eventually uploading it to youtube. Silly - but some 'interesting' footage nontheless methinks. :o) . . ate cold beef sandwiches, crisps and a banana again . . to bed gone 2am.
8 - Poor broken sleep then up at 7:45am. 19C in, 14C out. Sunny. . . walked BGdns. Played ball and then carried on down towards the harbour. The sunken yacht in the outer harbour was hard to find and barely visible with only a bit of the rail just poking up above the water. As I was stood there having a look, the MMC boat with divers and workmen aboard actually cruised out to have a look at it, but they then left to commence diving operations on something else over by the marina wavescreen. . . returned to BGdns, sat around and drank my coffee and eventually returned home. . felt awful tired and really not up to doing anything. Tried to potter around sorting out junk to fill the wheelie bin up with but ended up somehow just sitting around, PCing and TVing the whole day away, doing actually absolutely nothing! Even that seemed to tire me out still further! :o( . . . napped . . messed around with a couple of old solar lights from the garden for a while. All (but one) sadly fit for the bin I eventually concluded. SUCH a waste . . TVd . . ate two part-toasted haslet finger rolls with a large amount of chips followed by biscuits and chocolate . . . to bed around 1am.
7 - Up at 8:45am . . 20C in, 17C out. Sunny. . . walked BGdns only to find a big bank of sea mist had engulfed the area. Actually felt pretty cold in the damp breeze. Played ball and sat around for a bit before heading up to the high seat to drink my coffee. Aroundabout then I became aware of comms on the scanner suggesting that another boat had sunk in the outer harbour. There were initially suggestions it was a hazard to vessels navigating the main fairway into the inner harbour, but that pretty soon turned out to be not the case. Couldn't resist walking down into the harbour to see what there was to be seen of it. . look as I did, I just couldn't figure out where the thing was, and ended up walking all the way out to the seat above the end of the breakwater to sit for a bit. It was on the way back that I FINALLY spotted the thing. I'd actually kinda walked past it not long after first dropping down out of Battery Gardens by the old Astra Zeneca building (which is of course now owned by Plymouth university, etc). grabbed just a couple of snips of video for some stills for here before heading back up to the higher seat in BGdns to sit and drink my coffee. . eventually returned home via the clifftop road and FGn. . .PCd this. . totally silly perhaps, but I couldn't resist e-mailing a couple of the photos of that sunken yacht to the local Coastguard station. All the local authorities were of course already well aware that it was there like that, but I figured it 'may' be nice for the coastguard guys stuck in their office on a shift out of sight of it, to actually be able to 'see' what people were frequently calling them on the radio to tell them about (again and again). . .As monitored on my radios and via the AIS website, around 4pm US registered cargo ship 'Cape Ray' was off Berry Head dropping off a pilot and picking up some stores etc. In the banter I monitored, the (VERY pleasant and 'jovial') captain suggested they'd been away from home for 10 months now and were eager to get back. Wow - if I'd known that was coming in, I'd have headed back out with the camera to try to get a distant shot or two. Why? According to the article I bumped into via the AIS website, (Article on gCaptain.com / a look inside the ship) THAT ship was deeply involved in the recent alleged 'neutralising' of Syrian 'chemical agents'!!!! Yeah - shame I missed seeing that one. :o( . . . ate a bag of five small doughnuts with coffee . . napped . . TVd . . drank a glass of red wine . . cooked and ate two quarter pound burgers in buttered baps with grated cheese, fried potato and mixed veg in melted butter followed by some chocolate . . TVd until to bed around 1am.
6 - Up at 8am . . 20C in, 15C out. Bright but grey again. . headachey - annadin tablet. . Walked BGdns and sat around with a coffee for a while . . . cleared up and put all the junk back in the cupboard under the kitchen sink, now that I'm fully happy there are no leaks under there . .did dishwashing chores for hours . . . Mum called in with the papers and food donations for chats until early afternoon . . . ate a slice of gala pie, crisps, banana and some chocolate . . . napped until around 5.45pm. . . walked FGn and then carried on down around the harbour and on out to the seat above the end of the breakwater to sit for a bit. The 'season' is definitely over. Seemed really quiet about the place. It also seems to be getting dark real early 'all of a sudden' . . eventually headed back up to the high seat in BGdns to sit for my coffee in the dark (well before 9pm). . . TVd drinking a glass of red wine . . . messed with the tablet for a bit before ending up on the PC until around midnight. Once again I can't seem to get to the bottom of why the PC won't recognise the tablet when connected via the USB lead! Bloody annoying. It was however at least possible to save stuff to the mini SD card and then remove it and using the adapter and a reader, get stuff onto the PC that way. An irritating and cumbersome way of having to do things, but better than nothing I guess. :o( . . ended up getting fed up with the PC/tablet nonsense and happily turned it all off and returned to just sitting in front the TV . . . ate corned beef and mayo baps, crisps and chocolate . . to bed around 2:30am.
5 - Up at 9am . . 19C in, 16C out. Bright but kinda misty again. . . walked BGdns, but didn't hang around for too long, eager to get back and start the worrying work of trying to fit the new kitchen sink mixer tap! . . . assembled tools and everything I thought I'd need, made sure the kettle was all filled up, and then turned off the water by the main stop cock under the sink. In the absence of having identified a working shut off valve for the hot water supply, I then had little choice but to turn on all the taps in both the kitchen and the bathroom and just let everything drain away down the plugs until there was no more coming through from the immersion heater in the back bedroom and various tanks in the attic, etc. Took quite a while (enough time for a coffee and nervous vaping in the garden) but eventually things had reduced to just drips and I was in a position to dare to attempt to start actually disconnecting the old copper (10mm?) tap tail compression fittings. The online advert detail for the new tap had DEFINITELY said the flexi hoses included were 35cm in length, but they sadly were definitely only 30cm. That really was a nail biting issue for me - and the fact that they'd said they'd be 35cm had actually been much of the deciding factor for me buying that particular tap! Only being 30cm was going to be VERY touch and go as to whether or not they'd actually reach! Unfortunately it was going to be impossible to be fully sure until I'd actually removed the old tap and succeeded in fitting the full bore isolation valves. If I wasn't going to be able to re-use the old/existing compression olives (solid on the pipe) and nuts on the pipes to attach the new isolation valves, they were definitely NOT going to reach and I was going to have the BIG worst case scenario nightmare of having to modify all the copper pipework beneath the sink!
Had to saw off the ends of the tails of the old tap to be able to get it back through the hole in the top of the sink, because the olives and compression joint nuts were too big to pass through the hole - so, no going back!! <worry, worry - much! > . . oh thank god - it looked as though I WAS going to be able to use the old/existing olives and compression nuts on the ends of the pipework to attach the new isolation valves - and that meant those flexible hoses would 'just' be long enough. Ooooooooo - fingers crossed!! Used a bit of PTFE tape and clamped the new valves to the olives and old nuts as hard and tight as I dared.
followed the instructions about how to fit the flexible hoses, washers and mounting bolt into the new tap. I've never fitted a mixer tap like that ever before - and also have never before used those flexible hoses. Wow - no matter how short their lifespan may be in relative terms (compared to the 'forever' of doing it all in copper the old fashioned way) they made the whole process of the final connections and bends to the taps in the awkward under the sink area SO much easier, I don't think I'll ever hesitate in using them from now on whenever I have to do anything similar.
. with the isolation valves in place and working ok, it was no big deal to be able to isolate the new tap and remove the quarter turn ceramic tap valves, switch them round and be able to have the handle levers pointing down in line with the edge of the sink when off, rather than pointing out straight towards me and potentially 'in the way' of things when doing washing up, etc. A MUCH better arrangement I think. Now, with the lightest of a single finger pressure pulling those levers towards me, the tap is on - and a gentle push back down flat its off. Wow - that really is easy! Easier than anything I've EVER experienced before! I like that!
During all this work I found an old 15mm end-cap/blank in my plumbing collection. It seemed silly not to make use of it, so despite the enormous hassle of having to drain the whole house of water again to do so, I eventually removed the old hot water isolation tap for the washing machine, and properly blanked that pipe off with the end-cap compression fitting attached to the old olive/nut. So - I never need to worry about that redundant outlet leaking in the future now.
all done by around 2:30pm. Boy - that's a hell of a relief to have succeeded in getting all that done. I guess I have to admit, that really did go about as well as it possibly could have. Phew. :o) Oh wow - I'm really starting to like the idea of those big levers on that tap. It makes turning the thing on and off just SO, SO incredibly effortless and easy. Wow - I can see me eventually changing every tap in the house for that type. It may not look particularly 'fashionable', but it is just SO handy. Now I've experienced using one like that, I can't imagine why anyone would ever want to have a regular 'fiddley' handle on a tap? Yep - I'm TOTALLY converted to that type now. Totally. :o)
. . . did a load of laundry
and got it out on the line to dry . . ate corned beef, grated
cheese and mayo sandwiches, crisps, a banana and chocolate . .
napped until the 7pm alarm . . . DF called in for chats until
around 10:45pm . . .TVd . . ate a tin of hotdog sausages in four
pieces of bread and butter, followed later by bowls of rice
krispies and some chocolate . . to bed around 2am.
4 - Woke earlier, tossed and turned then up at 7:30am . . 19C in, 15C out. Misty grey again. . . walked BGdns . . . had to wait in for the tap delivery so ended up mowing and strimming both lawns and also using the hedge trimmer here and there around the place. Filled up three dustbins full of debris . .postman delivered the duracell batteries I'd ordered . . carried on pottering around in the gardens . . at 3pm the parcelforce driver delivered a box which I assumed was the tap. Didn't even open it. Left Bella home alone and jumped straight in the car with the four dustbins and drove to the tip to dump all the garden waste. One of those dustbins (largely full of all the weeds dug out from the front lawn as I recall) has been sat around for quite a while. It was particularly heavy and difficult to tip all the contents out. Because it'd been sat around for so long, the contents had started to 'melt down' and turn to a foul smelling liquid. In my struggles to empty the dustbin out onto the mountain of debris at the tip, I ended up having that disgusting liquid pour out all over my trouser legs!!! Eeeeeewww, eeeeeewww, EEEEEEeewww!!!!!! Damn - I could have done without THAT! Eventually returned home having to drive with the windows open, the smell of me was SO bad! . . . finally opened the box and had a look at the tap, etc. The flexi connectors are only 30cm long, not 35cm as the online advert had explicitely listed. FFS! :o( . . sat in the fresh air of the garden letting my stinking trouser leg dry a bit, recovering from the tip trip, drinking a coffee and reading the instructions for fitting the tap etc . . . worked in the garden de-weeding, clearing up and generally messing around a little more as the mistiness finally cleared to sunny . . eventually called it quits and immediately showered and got into much needed clean clothes . . walked BGdns. Very mild out but a lot of misty moisture in the air again. . Carried on down town. Very hungry and starting to get a little wobbly as a result, I treated myself to a large bag of chips. Jeezuz - £2.50 - just for a bag of chips!!!!! Outrageous price!! I could have bought a whole small sack of potatoes for that much! . Sat on one of the harbourside seats next to the old covered fish market, eating chips and listening to the town band playing right in front of me. Their last Thursday night concert of the season I believe. Gave Bella the last handful of chips before continuing to sit and drink my coffee and have a vape etc. Ended up feeling obliged to empty the remaining handful of small change from my pocket into one of the band collection buckets before we finally up and left - so - that turned into what 'I' consider to be a bloody expensive evening!! :o( . . back home via the store in town for milk . . . TVd/guitarred a little . . ate just some biscuits. I could have easily eaten more, but I was so outraged at how much those chips had cost me, I figured I'd spent quite enough on food for today and resisted!! :o( . . PCd until bed around 3am!
3 - Poor sleep, woke earlier with an aching back, tossed and turned then up at 8am . . 20C in, 15C out. Misty grey but slowly moving to misty sunny spells . . . walked the woods and BGdns and then back via town . . . PCd. Received a refund on the batteries.
Spent hours looking at taps yet again, trying to make a decision! Eventually somehow managed to make a decision, bit the bullet and ordered a brand new one from Screwfix mid afternoon!!! "H and C Commercial Lever Mono Mixer Kitchen Sink Tap Chrome" for £43.99 and two "15mm Full Bore Isolating Valves" for £9.38. Those 'full bore' isolating valves were quite a bit more expensive than the usual ones, but I went for those because I imagine they'll help keep the water pressure through the tap as desireably high as is possible, and they enabled me to bring the overall cost of the order to just over the fifty pound limit required to qualify for free next day delivery.
. . ate oven heated sausage
rolls, crisps, banana and biscuits. (A rare 'treat' for me to
oven-heat sausage rolls like that. I usually save the hassle and
expense and just eat them cold - or microwaved all sloppy!). . .
napped until around 6:30pm . . walked BGdns and sat around until
well after dark . . TVd . . cooked and ate ham, two eggs and
chips followed by some chocolate . . . to bed before 2am.
2 - Disturbed sleep then up at 7:45am. 19C in, 14C out. Overcast grey. . cruise ship Delphin docked in Bremerhaven, Germany around 6am this morning apparantly according to the AIS site . . walked BGdns in a very down mood . . .PCd this a bit, before just really not wanting to have to again. :o( . .ended up on e-bay messaging the duff batteries seller via the resolution centre. "The batteries do not hold a 'useable' charge and are TOTALLY unfit for purpose! After a full re-charge, when used in nothing more demanding than a simple radio, the batteries are flat within forty minutes! I have tried eight of the twelve and the results are repeatedly the same. (For reference, experience has shown 'proper' re-chargeable batteries would be expected to yield in excess of twelve hours CONTINUOUS use in the radio concerned!) I await your response.". Followed that up by immediately 'casually' ordering '8 AA Duracell 2400 mAh Duralock PRE/STAY CHARGED Rechargeable Batteries' for £14.49 inc postage - which is what I should have done in the first place isn't it? Hopefully the higher price and big brand name of Duracell will ensure I haven't wasted my money THIS time!!! :o( . This is NOT getting moving on my urgent kitchen sink taps problem!! :o(. . .played around with the bits of rather poor Cowes to Torquay powerboat race video and eventually set it uploading to youtube for the little its worth. Amazingly in some of that footage, it IS possible to see the clouds of flies I was plagued with when filming. lolol . . left the upload running and ate two ham baps, crisps, banana and chocolate . . . napped (leaving the PC still running the upload!) until around 7pm . . .TVd the evening away . . . cooked and ate two quarter pound burgers in buttered baps followed by chocolate . . to bed around 1:30am.
1 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up at 8:15am. 20C in, 16C out. Overcast grey. . .walked but didn't get further than the top of the road with Bella constantly stopping and shaking her head where she's scratched her ear bloody raw again. I lost my temper yet again and eventually just gave up, turned round and returned straight home and just shut her out in the garden all morning - to scratch and gnaw herself bloody some more!!! I'm just SO tired of the battle with her. If it isn't one thing its another - ALL the time. ALL the time! (Never mind the innefectual/money down the drain expense of all this flea treatment nonsense which I can't afford.) There's supposed to be 'some' pleasure in owning a dog. I really can't remember what that's like. :o( . . .miserable. . messed around charging some more of the 12 AA NI-MH batteries I recently bought, and then tested them in the scanner again. The same results were confirmed. The charge lasted an unuseable mere 40 minutes! What a f***ing joke that is. I fail to understand how it is, people even have the nerve to sell such useless rubbish. So now I have all the hassle of trying to get my money back on those and package them up and post them back, etc, etc. God - I'm sick and tired of constantly ending up being screwed over and wasting my money on rubbish like this. :o( . PCd. Edited yesterday's footage of cruise ship 'Delphin' in the bay and eventually uploaded it to youtube for the little its worth . . . ate haslet finger rolls, crisps and chocolate . . napped until around 6:30pm . . TVd . . .PCd this for a bit but soon lost interest in the chore and ended up poking at yesterdays snips of video of the powerboats for hours, even though its all pretty crappy footage and really not even worth keeping or doing anything with . . .drank almost a glass full of wine and cooked and ate four sausages on their own with just some ketchup followed by a couple of biscuits and some chocolate before to bed at 2am. ^Top