Monday 31 December 2018

Duck, tincture, tincture duck (& another duck)...

Just as a final 2018 post, here's a pic of this year's success in festive tincturement!

On stern, knowledgeable advice from Elder Daught, we forayed to Waitrose for Prosecco, Aperol, oranges, ice and Club soda, for a great experience!

I prefer more ice than soda, as it's usually quality over quantity these days, but, WOW, isn't a real Spritz a great imbibable pleasure!

Have one on me, and again, Happy 2019!

(And you thought this was a post about ducks didn't you...)!

Saturday 29 December 2018


Some time ago, Scrobs posted a piece about Ipad music apps and progs. These apps are just superb for an ageing old fart, re-creating music which was just a dream all those years ago.

As our 3rd Gen Ipads don't take new apps (not that we use many, but Senora O'Blene's machine was becoming a bugger to start up, often requiring a few hundred 'swipes' to get it going), after a quick foray into a Black Friday deal, we got two more, and the better off we are for certain!

As we never watch live TV, because it's nearly all leftie drivel, poor sleb stuff, crap equality rubbish and gender twonking, we either read a good book, or get into some good Youtube clips - some from way back, when entertainment was earned and enjoyed. Ipads are perfect for this.

The new Ipad has an updated version of Garageband, which is a complete joy to fiddle around with! It's free, and has so many bells and whistles that I'm still learning how to even start the whole thing off, so it'll be a great New Year!


One of my favourite pieces of music is still mystifying me.

What is the percussion 'clunk' instrument Kate Bush uses throughout the piece?

I just can't find it anywhere in any 'library', and am still going around the kitchen with various implements clonking on the kettle, the toaster, the window - in fact everywhere, and I still can't find out what it is!

Answers on a New Year's Day card please!

Sunday 23 December 2018

Christmas joyfulness...

It has to be this one!

I've always been a big fan of Mike Oldfield, ever since I watched him play Tubular Bells on the 'Arena' programme, back in the early seventies!

Just turn up the volume and soak up the happiness!

Happy Christmas, one and all!

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Non-Christmas rant...

What is it about our blasted government?

Scrobs usually keeps politics out of this site, although back when Blair and Brown were intent on ruining the UK Inc, there were several inroads in the disgusting pile of ordure they built up...

But why has it taken that bloated crowd in Whitehall nearly two years to realise that after we said 'Leave the EU', we meant it!

At long last, despite the awful biased BBC, the irrelevant Labour bunch, and assorted losers like the Lib Dems etc, the trend is now to get out and stuff the lot of them!

These people should lose all their benefits, pensions, perks, expenses and the rest, and should hang their heads in shame.

Hurrah! Out - and two fingers to Brussels is the right option!

Wednesday 12 December 2018

Timely tale...

Image result for snowman images

It Snowed Last Night...

8:00 am: I made a snowman.

8:10 – A feminist passed by and asked me why I didn’t make a snow woman.

8:15 – So, I made a snow woman.

8:17 – My feminist neighbour complained about the snow woman’s voluptuous chest saying it objectified snow women everywhere.

8:20 – The gay couple living nearby threw a hissy fit and moaned it could have been two snow men instead.

8:22 – The transgender man...women…person asked why I didn’t just make one snow person with detachable parts.

8:25 – The vegans at the end of the lane complained about the carrot nose, as veggies are food and not to decorate snow figures with.

8:28 – I was being called a racist because the snow couple is white.

8:31 – The middle eastern gent across the road demanded the snow woman be covered up.

8:40 – The Police arrived saying someone had been offended.

8:42 – The feminist neighbour complained again that the broomstick of the snow woman needed to be removed because it depicted women in a domestic role.

8:43 – The council equality officer arrived and threatened me with some sort of writ.

8:45 – TV news crew from the BBC showed up. I was asked if I know the difference between snowmen and snow-women? I replied “Snowballs” and am now called a sexist.

9:00 – I was on the News as a suspected terrorist, racist, homophobe and sensibility offender, bent on stirring up trouble during difficult weather.

9:10 – I was asked if I have any accomplices. My children were taken by social services. (bit silly that, they're in their forties).

9:29 – Far left protesters offended by everything marched down the street demanding for me to be arrested.


There is no moral to this story. It is what we have to put up with, all because of snowflakes.

h/t bbbc

Thursday 6 December 2018

That time of year...

I still love this piece of music.

The first time I heard it was during the film 'Home alone', and thereafter, our girls sang it at their school carol concert, and we bought a version which we usually play when we put up the tree a few days before Christmas.

This version is just stunning! I love hearing a good tenor voice, and was brought up listening to the classics of Heddle Nash, and yes, Harry Secombe! 

Friday 30 November 2018

Bin there, suffered the pain...

Scrobs was walking past 'The Bells' in a certain way.

As he approached the door, it suddenly opened and the delightful vision of Gloriette appeared, with a 'G & T' in one hand, and a worried expression in the other. A third arm clasped me around the neck, which caused some concern to various corpuscles which are instantly rearranged at such a gesture.

"Scrobs; what have you been up to"? She exclaimed before I could draw breath to say how nice it was to see my lovely chum again after far too long!

I drew back, drew a further breath, and drew on my knowledge of American court scenes, when the defendant admits all, and Ironside wheels himself off at a rate of knots.

"Oh, it's nothing, love of my life, just a small aberration from one's normal day-to-day actions"!

"Well, you're not looking at all well, so come inside and explain to us why you are limping and holding your arm at a funny angle"! Breathed my chum.

Elias Sagtrouser had already collected a pint of Shep's 'November Battleaxe 7.5 ABV', from Norman the landlord and this was thrust in my less angular paw with a similar look of concern.

"Tell me all Scrobs"! He ordered, and Gloriette reseated herself on a barstool which was far too high for her really, so she had to do a little jump, the sight of which sent what remaining corpuscles which hadn't noticed her presence, into a flat spin.

"Oh it's nothing", I started! "Just a small accident at home; I hardly feel a thing now"! A large gulp of my favourite brewery's product became an internal swirl, then a warming hit, then a sight mist in the short-vision, and for a moment, I nearly believed myself!

"Scrobs, if you don't tell me, I'll not send you a Christmas card, and that's final"! Elias ordered.

"Well, it's like this! Last Sunday, after lunch, Mrs OBlene and I were discussing successful world events, like a 'no-deal' Brexit and President Trump's manner of sticking two fingers up at the MSM. We may have sampled a couple of post-prandial tinctures at the time, I don't really remember - ha ha ha"!

"Look at me, Scrobs, and tell me in your most serious voice what went on, and why you are walking like Dustin Hoffman in 'Rain Man'"! Elias was becoming irate, to the point of ordering two more pints and a large G & T (Anno, the best Kent Gin ever produced). He always does this. It's a softening up process, so I decided to take another tack.

"Well, funny you should ask, because I was going to call round to your yard for some rock salt later"! I said. "I need something to stop the brick paths becoming so slippery, which they do at this time of year. I have to carry Mrs O'Blene sometimes, but she's so tiny, of course, that's easy"!

"Go on Scrobs", breathed Gloriette, and I wondered for a moment how it would be if I had to carry her and how far we'd get...

"We do a fine line in rock salt", said Elias. " Most of it comes in bags, so that's not a problem. I'll tell Meccano to give you 20% off"!

"Oh that's very good of you, old friend, but really, it's a responsibility, a social demand even, that I have to make, to ensure that everybody who visits doesn't endure the same - er - fall - that I had - ha ha ha..."!

"Oh Scrobs, where does it really hurt"! said Gloriette, with a worried frown, and a light electric touch (400 volts) on my good arm. It might even have cured the bad arm if she'd handled that particular limb.

"And also my backside"! I blurted!

"So you're making 'The Turrets' a safer place then", said Elias, looking at me in the same way that he looks at customers asking for credit.

"Soooo, what were you doing on the path"? Enquired my chum.

"Well, It was dark, the outside light wasn't working, and I was trying to get the wheelie bin down to the road while it was raining. Somehow, it caught one of the edging bricks on the slippery path, and tipped over, taking me with it"!

"Aaaah I see now"! Said Elias! "I thought you were going to say that you went arse over head because you were as pissed as a fart"!

There were knowing looks all round, saved by another wink from Gloriette...

Thursday 22 November 2018

Warm me up Scottie...

Image result for scotts porridge oats

Yesterday was the first day for this delicacy, we had some snow at first, so there was really no argument!

I heard a lovely headline on the radio over the weekend: -

The French 'government' were voting on whether to allow their prisoners cojugal rights. The newspaper next day said: -

'French votes on porridge oats'!


Thursday 15 November 2018


Scrobs has decided to resign from the cabinet.

Everyone else is doing it, and as for trying to get us out of the EU for ages, (we even voted to join back in the seventies, so that was a cock-up), I've had enough mucking around.

Just say to all the Brussels lot, 'Sod off', and leave it at that! My letter of resignation is in the post, with a second-class stamp on it, and by next week, I'll be an ordinary bloke again!

It's easy when you try hard enough...

Friday 9 November 2018

November lunch...

Heinz Cream Of Tomato Soup 300G

A.K.Haart has an interesting post on Marks and Spencer, and rather than fill up his comments column with my views, here's a different slant...

Last Friday, Her Fragrancy the Senora O'Blene and Scrobs visited our surgery for a flu jab. It's a ritual well worth the effort, as flu is just not pleasant, but this week, we've succumbed to an additional nasty cough in the lady's case, and a wretching stomach-churning bug in my case. It's a new vaccine this year, and we didn't get the flu side-effects though, just something else!

Apparently, like often happens at this time of year, all these things start to occur and we usually escape! But for me - ooooh no! A good friend just took one look at me and said 'Are you alright'? And the last time I'd seen her, she'd asked exactly the same question, so I must wear a scarf next time...

So, what to do about comestibles when under these circumstances (which are improving by the hour)! Mrs O'Blene's cough is not as bad as well, so she's well on the road to recovery.

Her Ladyship insists that the answer is a plain old tin of Heinz tomato soup! Yup, the elixir of life in a bowl with a couple of cream crackers! The world starts to improve in no time at all. 

To get back to Mr H's post though, us oldies here, have always relied on baked beans, soup, tinned spaghetti etc, as a pleasant eaterant! Ever since we were students, companies tried dried curries, tinned curries, some sort of foreign Indian mince thing, but we always reverted to the staples, and this week has been no exception! The old ideas stopped the rot!

Mind you, we do sneer a bit when we see ready-cooked mashed potato on the shelves in M and S...

Friday 2 November 2018

All white on the night...

Image result for belvoir elderflower

Scrobs has been making - on and off - our own hooch since the early 1970s. The main reason is of course, the cost of a decent bottle of wine, coupled with the fact that we really do like one particular recipe for a red wine, and it is preferable to some of the more dubious offerings from Waitrose or Tesco.

A few months ago, our homebrew supplier, which is a small family business and gives excellent service, sometimes delivering within twenty-four hours, advertised some new white wine kits. The cost works out at about a quid a bottle, so we bought some.

We both love Aussie Chardonnay, the sauvignon stuff is OK, but doesn't seem to have the finer flavour. A good Chardonnay is also brought out by the California whites which are a real treat! But I've never got to the magic 'oooooh' that means a proper success; until a rare brainwave hit me...

I usually rack off a couple of litres of the Aussie white, and keep it in the fridge as one does. But; the difference is that a dessert spoonful of the nectar depicted above makes a huge difference! It transforms a normal white into something really good, and brings a depth of flavour unknown in the past!

We live in Kent which has several wineries, but they are so darned expensive, and not particularly good either. A bottle may cost anything up to £14, and is not that special, so Chateau Scroblene is the one to go for from now on!


Wednesday 24 October 2018

Horn or hump...

As the whole of the universe knows, Scrobs and Her Senoraship Madame O'Blene bought a VW Golf last year, and we're mighty pleased with it.

As we mainly stay local, we often see chums going about their daily routine, walking dogs, buying stuff etc, and if we can, we pop a happy wave, hoping they'll see us. The 'problem' is that on the steering wheel, the actual horn-press needs the strength of an industrial crane to get it to hoot.

In the old Minis, the horn was a tiny button on the end of the indicator stalk, and a feeble beep was emitted as easy as pie. In the Golf, by the time one has spotted the unwary chum, and the thumbs are in place somewhere in the middle of the steering wheel, its too late to do anything, and anyway, the noise may just cause said chum to jump out of her/his skin! And we feel much aggrieved at missing the connection with friends!

What Scrobs really needs is a 'retro' Mini stalk, sellotaped to the dashboard, so the quick flip of the forefinger could emit the old style 'beep' or perhaps a birdsong, or a bark, so that the chum immediately knows who is calling out, and can take evasive action, or wave back, or make some sort of gesture normally associated with Harvey Smith!

I thought they were illegal, these Colonel Bogey horns, but watching Del Boy the other night, reminded me of a good chum who could wake up the whole of Chelsea by pressing every button at the same time...

Tuesday 16 October 2018


Back in the sixties, Scrobs used to listen to Radio London, and hear some of the best music around.

One track, first played - I think - by John Peel, was 'America', by The Nice, and Scrobs was blown away - well, he would have been, had he not been tucked up in bed with the wireless about six inches from his left ear, and smoking a Players Gold Leaf...

This was something fabulous! Great music for a twenty-year old, and a cert for 6s/6d down at the record shop in Hastings!

Wind back a few years. My lovely sister was given a lot of 33rpm records for her twenty-first birthday, and one of them was West Side Story. We played the lot on our new 'steeeerio', and I just loved Bernstein and Kostal's music. It was magical, and unbelievably vibrant.

Backward a few years and more, now at school, there was always an annual House Music competition. There was a set song, where everyone (about seventy of us blokes), would bawl some awful song planted on us by the Director of Music, (or occasionally known as the choirmaster), and then there would be a podium for anyone to add to the points for each house, to get the 'prize'.

Scrobs was the first to take a rather cheap guitar, in front of three-hundred other boys, and play a tune. I'd asked a chum (who was tone deaf), if he'd accompany me, but eventually, he realised that he was hopeless, so, a bereft Scrobs decided to do the whole shebang as a solo piece.

Bugger me, I had to combine all sorts of notes to make 'Tonight' sound anything like a recognisable song, but luckily, it worked, and I beat some Welsh Junior Assembalist youth viola player to the prize - much to his annoyance, but he was a bit of a prat so who cares!

So now, as President Trump is bringing so much value in the USA, with profound hard work, dismissal of the awful bbc and cnn etc, the great ol' country is alive and kicking, and I put it all down to the fact that I won a 7s/6d Boots voucher for winning the strings section in the house music!

Thursday 11 October 2018

The day we went to Bangor...

Senora O'Blene and I often chortle this gorgeous song, usually tinctures in hand before supper, as out of the pair of us, a certain person (not me), makes up outrageous lines and words, which need to be kept under wraps as far as the tender ears of youngsters, small animals and various spinsters of the parish are concerned!

I was interested to see that others have had the same idea, but being a fine upstanding Scrobs, with no need to listen to other versions, here is the best one - the original!

Sorry about the ad at the beginning - they're just blasted irritating aren't they!

Tuesday 2 October 2018

As cold as charity, and charity's chilly...

Image result for ode to a road a272

In Pieter and Rita Boogaart's superb travel book about the A272, which is a famous East/West route from East Sussex to Winchester, there are so many unheard facts, that it's difficult to keep up, and it all needs reading again!

I used to travel that route regularly from about 1975, as I had a lot of work in Hampshire, and much of the motorway network hadn't been built. It would always take me three hours to get to Winchester, however fast I drove, because all the traffic would meet up again in the lovely towns like Petworth and Midhurst, so an average of 40 mph was the order of the day, and it hardly ever changed.

Of the snippets which pepper every page, there's a couple which I was interested to learn about. One is that the origin of a lychgate on a church wall, was originally to accept a dead body at a funeral, and hopefully the vicar stayed in the dry! The funeral service started at that point.

I told this to a good friend who hails from the North, and she told me that the particular ritual also applied to weddings - mostly in Yorkshire! I always thought they were a sort of folly or just a plain architectural addition, but the idea originally was that once at the church gates, one either went on to be spliced, with no escape, or finished up 6ft under, ditto...

But another item caught my imagination. The author covers some detail on The Cokelers.

Reading between the lines, it seems that they were a slighly odd sect, and didn't really seem to want to enjoy themselves either, but they did a lot for charity, and I suppose their pious intent never did anyone any harm, apart from discouraging marriage, which may well have turned out a bit tiresome at the local dance hall...

I've started several chums on ths book, and we all compare notes - it's well worth a read...

Tuesday 25 September 2018

Bring back the real 'Summer Game'...

As the cricket season squeaks and bangs to a halt, and 'stumps' is called all over the UK, I have to reflect on how little I watched this past season.

Back when I was a boy, my dad would always have the TV on for the cricket while he worked in the garden. He'd pop back in to watch an over or two, open a can of light ale, then carry on with whatever he was doing, content in the knowledge of Cowdrey's century becoming a possibility, or Boycott starting to get runs after three hours.

Now the awful BBC hardly ever shows any cricket, I miss all that, but there are rumours that the terrestrial TV services may take some of the viewing back, which could be interesting. I hope so.

Skipping through some earlier cricket Youtube clips recently (it was rumoured that Don Bradman's family came from around here, and I wanted to find out more), I found some great footage of the 1981 Ashes, when Ian Botham scored a memorable 149 not out, but the other star was Bob Willis taking 8 for 43 in an incredible spell of great bowling!

And watching these clips again, made me feel rejuvenated and even elated, to see such a great game, well played, and without the snarling, spitting, sledging which infests such great events these days.

Perhaps the 'Summer Game' has gone too far towards money, advertising and 'sleb' status now, I hope not, but when I can next switch on the TV, open a can of gardening beer, and enjoy a few overs before I cut the grass, I'll be a happier Scrobs than I am now!

Sunday 16 September 2018

Tinker Dill - R.I.P...

So sad to see that Dudley Sutton died yesterday. Of course, he was getting on a bit, and amazingly still working up to the end, but he was a treasure in our eyes, and we remember so much about him!

His character in Lovejoy was just marvellous, especially when he was with Chris Jury, but of course, when Ian McShane was in the scene, almost anything could happen, and invariably did!

Mrs O'Blene and I still say to this day, an immortal line from an advert for some long-forgotten product, where he meets his mates in a pub, with a wry smile, exclaiming 'She wants her bath oil', in that inimitable rounded voice which was unique to him!

We bought the whole set of all the Lovejoys a couple of years ago, and it is going to be such a pleasure seeing his antics again, when we start watching the screen in October.

While you're up there Tink, could you have a look at that fake angel please...

Friday 7 September 2018

Golden nectar...

The gorgeous tipple is almost unavailable around here now. Even Tesco doesn't stock it any more!

What is so strange is that here we are, in The Garden of England, with apple trees everywhere (yes, still), and there are hardly any craft distillers making it.

I've found one, Greensand, but their apple brandy is still in cask, so we'll need to wait awhile, but come on, we're only a few miles from Normandy as well, and they make the stuff everywhere!

Anyway, the pic shows one of our favourites, and when the apple season really starts to motor, I'll be on the lookout up to fifty miles in any direction...

Saturday 25 August 2018


Scrobs has just saved nearly £110.00 on insuring our VW Golf. (See Scrobs passim re EU nasties/wasters and all that crap about pollution).

It's well known that anyone hanging in with their old insurer pays well over the odds for them to make it cheaper for newcomers, but this is really taking the proverbial!

A 30% reduction for exactly the same 'service' is much better in our pocket than Churchill's! And the new insurer is a big four bank!

Senora O'Blene and I can now dine out on several occasions, where we may not have been able to do in future months...

Friday 17 August 2018

Old school song...

Scrobs' schooldays are long past of course, but the old hymn we would sing at the end of the year was one which would blow the rafters off the old chapel roof!

I always wanted to copy the music (I had the words from the order of service), and only recently managed to get it from a fellow OB.

If you are able, it is well worth playing and also singing the words on the right. That last verse is an absolute killer, and at OB days, there's hardly a dry eye in the chapel!

Tuesday 7 August 2018

Glass phone - phone glass...

On occasions when sleep evades this ageing but malleable Scrobs, a quick listen to the wireless (through earphones, before the Senora O'Blene becomes truculent and verbal), is on the cards.

Sometimes, there is a great chap on, Fevzi Turkalp, The Gadget Detective, and he really does know his stuff where computers, phones etc are concerned. He also has a very pleasant delivery, which is very welcome at 3:00 am! 

The other day, he mentioned a 'life-hack' which struck a chord.

Put your phone, on speaker, into a clean, dry glass and you'll get some pretty good amplification, which costs nothing and makes for a good listening experience!

I'd never thought of this before, and as my phone is more aligned to the old black brick design, compared with new smart phones, I thought I'd ask anyone here if it works?

Friday 27 July 2018

Screws and a barrow...

Just recently, I needed something which would normally be stocked by an ironmonger.

We used to have a shop near here where you could buy just about anything in that line of business, and if I went in and discussed my requirement with Peter the manager, he would listen intently, and head off to the dark corners of the shop and after a few thumps and squeaks, he would reappear with the said item.

But then he'd start to chat.

So, after clutching the small item, say half a dozen screws in a paper bag, I'd be subjected to a discussion on life as we know it, and also, after another half hour, I'd emerge from his shop with a wheelbarrow, three packets of weedkiller, a plug for an electric fan I didn't own and a gallon of parrafin.

I really miss that chap. We all liked him in the village, and I'd vowed that when I retired, I'd go and work for him behind the counter, but it wasn't to be...

Thursday 19 July 2018

1947 was a good year...

This is the day when the Senora O'Blene and I adjourn to the pub to celebrate Scrobs' big day...

The Great house at a village not far from here...

Thanks to the 71 place in Ilfracombe, I can post a nice picture of the actual age of your correspondent!

(Ilfracombe is a rather genteel place, known for its caves and tunnels - a bit like our garden in all this heat)!

Friday 13 July 2018

Anderson v Isner...

There must be a country, somewhere, where someone went to bed just before this match started, and when they woke up, it was still going on...

What a fabulous match! It should have been a draw, and both of them could have played with some of those sponge balls and a black plastic garage racket on Sunday, just to relive a bit of the six and a half hours of pure sporting pleasure!

Over recent years, Her Beautality the Senora O'Blene and I have tried to relive the days of Rod Laver, John Newcombe and Ken Rosewall, but much of this was squashed when some of the earlier Americans muscled in, and brought arrogance and unwelcome aggression to Wimbledon. Our interest waned...

Isner has changed all that, and Anderson has proved to his own country what a real game should be like. They both deserve a huge accolade for their strength, skill and guts.

We can't wait for next year!

Monday 9 July 2018

Tartan cackleberries...

Senora O'Blene has been busy manufactruring these delicacies, and most have vanished already...

Back when her family ran a successful pub, at this time of year, Scotch eggs just flew off the shelves, and she and her mum spent most afternoons making a load more for the evening rush!

We're trying to remember how much they charged, but one thing is for certain, a lot of the profit from sweltering in the tiny galley kitchen for several hours, probably paid for their retirement house...

There's just one left, and there'll be a fight as to who gets it...

Tuesday 26 June 2018

Sunshine and Mr Carter...

Sixty-three years ago this month, Scrobs was incarcerated in The Royal East Sussex Hospital, having both legs realigned. They were growing the wrong way, so a quick snap, a few pins, and everything was back on track.

I reckon several of the lovely nurses here were in and out of Children's Ward 2 - bless! Six weeks is quite a long time for a 7 year-old, and I was desperate to be out in time for my July birthday, and all these girls were just gorgeous to us few kids.

I'd started school a year in Rye a year or so before, and used to travel with my sister on a number 30 Maidstone and District bus. The season ticket had been welded to my satchel, which was a good idea, as the fare of around 3d (just over a new penny now), was very important, and we always had to show these to the bus conductor of the day. One of these we nicknamed 'Sunshine', as he was always beaming and a happy man to be in charge. We all loved him, and he always welcomed us like an extended family - and there were a lot of us believe me!

Another conductor was Mr Carter. He was a grandfatherly figure, and a really kind gentleman to everyone. I can still remember him welcoming an elderly lady onto those long seats by the open door at the back, and while she made herself comfortable, she smiled and said how nice the bus service was, and Mr Carter was as happy as Larry to keep up the conversation.

Of course, being a kid, I had lots of visitors, family and friends, but only on a couple of days a week. Visitingimes were damn strict back then, and children needed naps! (Why they thought ringing a damn great bell ouside our ward was a good way to keep children asleep in the afternoon is beyond me), A highlight was being the star patient for a visit by the Hastings June Carnival Queen! And she signed my plaster in red biro!

Another highlight was being visited by one of our favourite bus conductors, Mr Carter, but I was asleep, and he didn't want to wake me. Of course, he left me some sweets; he was like that...

63 years eh. What a lovely man.

Thursday 14 June 2018

Tinctures today and downey white feathers...

It's Goosey's birthday today, and I'm the first here to wish her a fabulous day with all the luxurious dining, presents and special things she wants!

Happy birthday Angela Snow! With your wit and humour, thoughtful poetry, gardening skills and many other benefits to humanity, I'll look forward to seeing all the photos when you eventually get back to your roost!

(Do lady geese actually roost?)

Tuesday 12 June 2018

Fabulous family film...

One of our best local friends told me about this clip, and as a dad, amd a grand-dad, I find it absolutely stunning.

My chum is a celebrated artist, who understands subtleties in events like this, after all, he was art director for several big advertising companies back in the sixties and seventies, so when he says it's good, it is really going to be good!

And it is...

Wednesday 6 June 2018

Bulk up old man...

One of these being delivered for the drive today...

Just topping up a few bare patches - I had a haircut on Monday, so this should make up the difference!

Tuesday 29 May 2018

Scrobs and the accountant's daughter...

A few years before her Fragrancy, the Lady Mrs Scrobs appeared on the horizon, and she was still some way off with chums and other blokes,  Scrobs had started to develop a close friendship with a family, with whom he spent many happy hours watching rugby, visiting pubs, drinking pints of beer and generally enjoying life in the middle nineteen-sixties

These friends were all larger than life characters, and Mr D had two daughters, one of whom began to accept and reciprocate the shine of a young, yelping Scrobs. All this didn’t go unnoticed by Mr and Mrs D, and the whole scenario was starting to look quite interesting for all.

Mr D was a senior partner in an accountants in Chancery Lane and drove a huge Bentley. They all lived in an enormous house in one of the nicer, leafier districts of Hastings (oh yes, there are some, but you have to know where they are), and we had many a day of jollity, most of which was endearingly funded by Mr D, because he was a generous man, and liked to see people getting on in life, and likewise his wife.

Scrobs was living in a flat (and relative poverty), in London at the time, and returned home each weekend to see these friends and of course, several others. On one occasion, during the week, when I was looking at a lettuce or something for supper, Mr D, with a twinkle in his eye, suggested that we go out for a few beers in London, because he had an early meeting the next day, and was staying up that night.

Of course, Scrobs agreed, and on arrival at Chancery Lane, (‘Ask for the Law Courts, you’ll find us halfway up on the left’, were the instructions). From there we repaired to ‘The Red Lion’ (‘we’ll just go in here for a couple of pints, and then we’ll go to the Spanish Club in Cavendish Square; dinner’s on me tonight’), for what turned out to be five pints of Bass and a crack at the sixpenny fruit machine!

The evening wore on and dinner was great fun, because everyone seemed to know Mr D, and he seemed to know everyone as well. I remember a sweet course of a candied orange... Which was a good thing, as Scrobs realised in the realms of Rioja, that he was being ‘vetted’ as a suitor for the particular shining daughter! There was much more jollity, and about half-nine, a huge handshake and a big thank you, followed by a somewhat varied route back to the flat, where I can still remember seeing one of my flatmates, and telling her that I’d just had a splendid evening, and she laughed and said it looked like it!

It is an abiding memory Mr D, and I still recall just about everything we discussed and laughed about, and I’m sorry the mutual shine didn’t happen, but glad that the various daughters went on and made a success in life, and I hope you all carried on to a ripe old age as well.

And why the reference to The London School of Useful Idiots? Well, the pub was at the end of Red Lion Street, off High Holborn, where in the sixties, the LSE had a noisy presence and were all regarded as a crowd of empty-headed wasters, easily ignored by real people who actually created the wealth they spurned so much. So no change there.

Funny ending to a post, but that's what happens really...

Errr... Bugger?...

I've noticed that I haven't posted anything for two weeks.

This is a travesty of opprobrium, and, mortified as I must feel, I can't think what to say!

As Winston Churchill (or was it Harold Macmillan) once said, 'Oh bugger, I can't remember', so be it thus that this is a fill-in until I can summon enough of whatever I use to complete a post, and - er - that's it...

Bummer isn't it, blighter's rock...

Sunday 13 May 2018

Alice and the lumps...

Image result for town like alice

Back about 1970, soon after Christmas, I caught a bout of mumps. I was twenty-three then, and at that age it's not really a good idea to acquire this little issue...

My flatmate had got it first, just before the party season, and he came off pretty bad because of the complications which mean that the old system gets attacked from all angles if you're not careful! He just went out on the razzle, and told me later that 'they turned black'... 'Nuff said!

So of course, because we shared the same flat, etc, I was bound to get the lumps on the neck and sure enough they arrived with a sickening prospect. In those days, family doctors actually made house visits, and my doctor confirmed that I was in for a few days of unpleasantness, but if I was careful, and didn't move around any more than I had to, I should be alright. We even discussed whether I could watch the Barbarians rugby match that day, and he thought it would be a risk, so I missed that.

I suppose most kids get mumps early on, but I was terrified of the potential consequences, and stayed immobile in bed at home, looked after by doting parents. To say immobile is an understatement. I can remember lying still for the whole of each day, just getting up for necessities, but eating was jolly painful and so was drinking - especially sharp things, so life wasn't a bowl of cherries.

My dear mum collected a load of books for me to read, and one of these was 'A town like Alice', by Nevil Shute. I read the whole book, cover to cover, in one day, and was totally immersed in such fabulous writing. I'm sure reading such a gripping story made me feel better at the time too - something about others being worse off I suppose!

I ordered it from our library recently, and a brand new copy arrived after some time - surprisingly, but in brand new condition, so I wonder if they can get these reprints of classics done as a matter of course - I'll ask them!

I started it late last evening, and within seconds was totally hooked again, just as I was all those years ago! It's an incredible story and as I'm a slower reader now, it'll be a couple of days this time, but at some stage of reading it again last night, I just considered a quick peep under the clothes to make sure that - er - the extremities were still unaffected...