Friday, April 19, 2013

First picnic of the year

Signs that it really must be Spring.......

There are lambs on the farm next door (this one was getting a bunk up on Mum!), our Sweet pea and Broad bean seedlings are coming up at last, the ducks are laying more eggs than we can deal with and there are Devonshire Red calves in the barn behind the bungalow.

Today I had my first picnic of the year and a furtle around the charity shops as a treat.

Looks a bit pathetic I know - I was in a rush.

I think if you have to do something unpleasant in life it is imperative that you treat yourself afterwards.  The reward has to be in proportion to the level of unpleasantness though.  

This works really well if, like me, you dread going to the dentist.

Root canal = day out in London.
An extraction = weekend in Paris. 

For example - today I had an eye test....

Up and left
That's good
and down and right
Focus on my light
Small puff of air coming
Another puff
And final puff
Look at the black circles on the green and red
Which looks clearer?
or red?
That's green?
or red?
or red?
Ooooh, it's difficult to say....
How many spots?
Is it better or worse?
With or without?
Read the letters on the wall for me
S R something something G ummm don't know....
That's good
Would you like a photo of your eyeball to take home with you?
No thank you

So after an hour of all that funny business I had my picnic in the Cathedral Close listening to a man with a cockney accent shout at a woman called Carol on his mobile phone.

It was very grey today so here are some pictures that I took last summer on a rare balmy evening.

The Cathedral is central to my life.  It is the hub, the tallest, strongest, constant around which I dither and generally flap about.  It not only has the tallest spire (123m) but also the largest cloister and the largest cathedral close in Britain (v proud).  It also houses the oldest working clock in the world.  After watching a dramatisation of 'The Spire' by William Golding at the local theatre I fell in love with the Cathedral even more.  Jonathan Meades, the writer and broadcaster (who also grew up in Salisbury) once described the spire as looking like an upside down ice cream cone or a rocket!  It can't be missed as you enter the city from any direction and when we spot it on the horizon we always know that we are nearly home.

I fell in to a few charity shops and found some bargains today too.  Charity shopping has to be the most fun, the most economical but the most time consuming occupation.  A couple of weeks ago I found 4 things in 4 hours!  One item an hour, oh dear....

I love my 50p bargain too - a little owl for holding toothpicks.  Cute.

This week I have been mostly baking - the flattest Victoria Sponge known to man, twice!  (The birds had the first one).  I think the tins were too big or I have lost my mojo.  I don't like to think about it.  I may never bake again......

Especially when my fellow Bungalow Girl is turning out such glossy, delicious bagels (grrrrr).  She tells anyone who will listen that this is 'the year of pastry and dough'.  Fine by me.  I'm getting soda bread and Chapatis this weekend.

I spent the whole of last weekend in tracksuit bottoms (and beads, strange combo).  A tip from me.  Don't do it!  Don't go down the comfy trouser road.  On Monday morning I found I couldn't get my jeans done up!  Oops.

Wednesday -

We had a 'Great Escape' situation.  One of our ducks went AWOL.  We found him running up and down the wrong side of the fence frantically trying to join his friends in the garden.  It's quite tricky attempting to catch a traumatised duck in a very large field with the aid of an uncoordinated teenager (in school uniform, agh!).  I should mention that I have a fear of flapping wings and I also hadn't  had time to change out of my office attire.  We managed to get him in to a cardboard box in the end and fling him back over the fence to be quacked at and chased by the other ducks.  They don't call them 'Runner' ducks for nothing!

Big dog and I have had many pleasant post work, pre dinner, solitary walks without the need for endless layers of clothes (for me not the dog).

I had to get a Dutch barn in there too.

Thursday -

I realised that I have a clothing problem.  The morning walk at 6.30am is fine when it's dark and I can stagger up the (175m!) hill behind the bungalow with a woolly hat pulled down over my bed hair and a heavy coat covering my inappropriate clothing but now the clocks have changed I feel very exposed.  I said my usual good morning to the bald, neat man with wriggly spaniel (I do think it's easier to look neat if you are bald) and was suddenly aware of my awful attire.

- Red and white stripey wellies
- Purple cords flapping two inches above my ankles
- Baggy turquoise jumper
- Green cord jacket (cord with cord - what a faux pas)
- Orange tie die scarf
- Topped off with a nice flat cap

I need help.......



  1. ha ha - welcome to the world of chasing up renegade ducks ! I can sympathise - while laughing heartily :-)
    They'd better behave for me in June !
    x basil

  2. Yeh, but wouldn't that be dull?!

    x Mildred