Daily Archives: November 1, 2014

Pre-Birthday wishes and The Tank Head Blues


Now here’s a puzzle. I went to bed last night at 12.35 am and I got up this morning at 4.51 am, or did I? The reason I ask the question is the first thing I did on getting up was turn the clocks and watches back an hour so I may have got up at 3.51 am in which case I could have had  nearly 3 hours sleep or nearly 4 hours sleep. Figure that out while you’re sober I dare you.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Naturally the first job after the great bladder unburdening was to get the computer warmed up and start on the emails. There was no point in teasing myself with questions as to whether I’d won the lottery as Mike had come through with the results last night an got rid of the disappointment early. It’s not like I want much really, a secure future for my family, charity donations ( that’s a new shirt for Mike), holiday homes on every continent and a bevy of beauties, Oh if only I could remember what to do with them.

It’s strange but recently I’ve felt the blog has been lacking something. Hasn’t been up to scratch in the humour department and yet two people say lat week’s blog was very funny. It’s been so bad I have considered giving up and concentrating on Author Interviews. Maybe I’ll rethink that option now. There was a fair bit of post to deal with but I had a break at 6.00 am to feed this fish which I didn’t dare forget after yesterday. I don’t need more of the evil eye from Big Al, I thought we were getting along so well these days. After taking meds I took my coffee back to my room and carried on working. I wanted to be as free as possible this morning in case we go freezer shopping. But, at about 7.00 am I had a text from Yvonne to say Ugo was playing in the church band this morning and so he’d drop her off here and join us later. That means we’d have to put Reuben’s seat in Mike’s car. She said they’d be here about 9.30 am which meant Mike and I wouldn’t be shopping. ( Feeling guilty yet Yvonne for not telling Ugo about the party in time?) Then she told me Reuben has been explosive from all directions overnight and this morning so he’s not a happy bunny.

Mike surprised me by getting up about 8.30 am completely unprompted. He was so proud. I know I could have pointed out it was 9.30 am really but I’ve kind of got used to my kneecaps being where they are. Instead, I just smiled and nodded a lot. I made his coffee  and then came back to clear up what I thought would be the last few pieces. I wan’t that lucky and the next thing I knew was it had reached 9.30 am. It didn’t worry me overmuch as Yvonne and timekeeping are distant cousins at best. (She says it’s Ugo on African time and I know he’s good at that.) They did arrive ten minutes later and Mike who’d got dressed went out to swap the car seats over for Reuben while I got to pick my grandson up and herniate a few discs in the process.  I left Yvonne with my Asus tablet to get a feel of using them as she’s still keen on the idea of a Hudl. I went off to get dressed and Reuben wandered between us both, quite happy and enjoying his explorations. I didn’t want to get changed twice today so I put my suit on early. I might not be shopping to fill the freezer but we were sure to be going somewhere. Then Yvonne asked if we could go to Abakhan mill where they do material and threads etc. I was sure we’d be able too and Reuben could go on the play area and we’d have chance of a drink.

Mike came back in after fitting the seat and said Ugo had gone back to his church and would see us later. There was no problem about going to Abakhan but since it was on the way to The Ivy he was going to change into his suit too, so we didn’t have to double back. By about 11.00 am we were ready to leave. It’s only a very short distance away so we were there quite quickly. Reuben was just showing signs of being niggly but that stopped when he saw the play area. I pushed him up and down on the see-saw then he saw the slide.. That as always was a wow though we couldn’t get him to pick his feet up so he’d slide easier. The shoes he had on acted like brakes and sounded like they needed oiling. For a change he didn’t head for the swings but ran to a horse set on springs. He did really well. Yvonne needed a gift for one of is carers  and while she chose that Mike bought Reuben a Welsh Dragon cuddly toy. We all went for a drink. Silence reigned for a few minutes then Reuben’s inner siren started up. People looked at us as though we’d just old Reuben he’d never see his parents again, no, that’s a terrible analogy since he’ll walk away with anyone. It was like he’d been told he could never go on a swing or a slide again. Heck, I almost howled for him myself then.

At midday we left taking the siren with  us much to the relief of the staff and headed off for the Ivy. Not too full but still someone sitting in the places I’d hoped to get. Tariq cam over to tell me as soon as they left the seats were ours. I said I simply had no room for them thanks all the same. We sat temporarily in our usual reserved seats and Angie made our drinks. We couldn’t order food until Karen and Jo got there but we could realx for a few minutes. The girls did arrive a few minutes later so it was hugs all round and then they all got into giving Mike his birthday presents. I know Yvonne got him a lovely dragon box and I saw a Chauffeur to his Lordship mug somewhere. After the couple had moved away from the tables I’d reserved I chivvied everyone until they moved over then asked Mike to borrow Angie’s pad so we could write down the orders as people decided. That worked fairly well and since we learned that Ugo was on his way, we stuck our order in and Mike and I went out for a ciggie and were joined by my wonderful niece Joanne. Tariq came out and I was able to pay him for the meals , asking him to let me know if it was any more after that. Big mistake.

After we’d gone back in the meals started arriving an so di Ugo who was able to  quickly order a drink and his meal. We all sat down to eat and had got Reuben some scrambled eggs. Things seemed to be OK for a while until he suddenly threw up. I don’t know how she did it, but Yvonne managed to catch it in tissue laden palms cupped together. She must have second sight. After we’d eaten, Mike an I headed outside again. Tariq stuck his head out and said Mike was wanted. When we were seated again, the staff came up behind Mike and sang Happy Birthday to him and fetched the cake Yvonne had bought in with her. Mike started cutting the tiniest slices until I asked how many he was feeding. Things got a little more realistic after that. He was given some presents by the staff that I daren’t describe here for the sake of decency. It was soon time to depart and after we’d swapped the car seats back Mike disappeared to visit his father and I rode home with Yvonne and Ugo after hugging my girls goodbye and calling goodbye to all the staff. I think it was about 3.00 pm when I got home and obviously had to fly straight into battle with the mailbox. I did quite well.

At about 5.00 pm I went through and found Voyage of the Dawn Treader on TV so I had the pleasure of watching that until 8.00 am. I was having a crisis of conscience though a I’d promised my self to watch Angels and Demons tonight and I very rarely watch films, I rarely have the time. Had I not told Mike I wanted to watch it and he’d said he’d watch it with me, I could have missed it and carried on working but no, he had to arrive back at 8.55 pm and I had to drop everything until 11.45 pm. Oh woe is me. I enjoyed the film but It’s now 12.30 am an I still have to get back to the post.

lunch 2

birthday wishes 2



So, it was another 1.00 am bed last night but a 5.18 am up.I was allowed a lie-in . I’m fine at that part of the day but tiredness is creeping up on me later in the day. Not much later today as it happens since I felt myself start yawning about 7.30 am, just in time for feeding the fish. I made sure I kept my mouth tight shut when I opened the feeding flap though in case one of them planned a jailbreak. As it was, I saw none of them at all. I tried a little gentle talking but they probably burrowed down a bit lower at that so I just left them to it and went about my duties, sprays, tabs and coffee. The latter I took with me back to my room and carried on working. At 8.20 am Mike got up and came through to my room. No doubt he remembered it’s the cleaners day. I made him a drink. She didn’t arrive at 8.30 and at 8.45 there was no sign of her. I could only assume she’d changed her mind about coming. Mike and I were looking at things on ebay when at 9.00 am the door opened. I asked how her hospital appointments had gone last week to see if she was well. After giving her answer she apologised for being late and then told me she could only work an hour again today as this time her car needs to go in for MOT. I asked her to run the hoover round the lounge and then sort the laundry baskets into iron and non-iron so those that  didn’t need it could be stored.

After she left Mike heard an almighty thud and went through and found all the laundry had collapsed onto the floor.We collected it and stored the non-iron away leaving the stuff to be ironed on one side till next weeks flying visit. We decided that maybe it was a good time to get dressed and decide what to do.By the time we were ready it was getting on for 11.00 am and we settled on a trip to Prestatyn. We both waved at the Ivy and the Bells of St Mary’s when we went past. I suggested Mike could be a little less enthusiastic and just use one hand so we could stay on our side of the road., he called me unadventurous. We reached Prestatyn alive and when my knees stopped knocking I tried to get out and walk. It was hard but I persevered. We did one of the shops I wanted then decided to have a look at the main street. After paying a visit to the loo we admired a few window displays and then went to a cafe for lunch. We’ve been there before and it was quite pleasant. From there we visited a card shop and tried to find some gift boxes, especially for watches but with no luck. It was time to head for home again and another bout of waving and knee knocking.

At home Mike settled on the laptop while I set to work on the emails. After a few minutes he came through to tell me not to worry about the watch boxes anymore he’d found and ordered some for me. That’s why he’s my bro. It took me until 4.30 to clear the bulk of the mail so I could watch TV with Mike and I stayed there till almost 9.00 pm. The post was once again frightening when I came back through and I’m a little distracted as I’m trying to win something on ebay. It’s my last chance after losing the previous one after forgetting to come through and bid. This time I was determined to put up a fight. It finished at 11.00 pm so I’ll soon know how it’s gone. ( I won it.)

Santa Unmasked

Santa Unmasked


5.12 am today and I sat bolt upright in bed like I’d heard a noise. I had. At first I thought an asteroid had hit and the San Andreas fault was slowly splitting.  Then I realised it wouldn’t make as much noise as ‘someone’ just two rooms away snoring. There’s a snorting intake of air, a few moments of blessed peace and then the sound of two fish slapping against each other as the air is finally exhaled flapping the lips together I don’t think I’d have managed to get back to sleep anyway but any attempt would have been thwarted by the schizophrenic conversation he then held with himself. Anyway, I was suffering oxygen starvation every time he breathed in so I thought I’d better get up and lean out of the front door. A couple of stiff breaths and I came in to start work. I did consider clouding matters by joining in the conversation but maybe it was best to let them chat between themselves.

At just after midnight I’d posted an author interview with my delightful friend Olga Nunez Miret. What a mistake that was, just about 5 hours later and my postbox was chock a bloc with likes and comments. I did have to do my banking first and check the overdraft was in place. By 7.00 am when I was due to get Mike’s coffee I still hadn’t caught up. I quickly saw to the fish and my drugs and made myself a drink.  After the first alarm the coffee went through and I called Mike, then I needed to get washed and dressed before starting work  again. The second alarm went off and I called Mike to say his coffee was growing cold. There was another acknowledgement but no movement so I carried on. Only after the third alarm was there any movement. I finished up to 6.30 am and then went through to the lounge. Fair play, once he’d drunk the cold coffee he didn’t take long to get ready and we were on our way to Chester at 8.15 am. It wasn’t the best thing to hear when hurtling through traffic that he felt just hal awake.

We arrived at the car park we”d chosen because it was on the flat only to find out the pricing structure had changed for the worse. Now we would pay through the nose by the hour. The attendant did tell Mike of another car park which offered £5 all day but only if you were in by 9.00 am after which standard charges applied which meant £5 for just two hours. We made it by the skin of our teeth. We walked to where we were meeting Yvonne and Reuben and were just a couple of minutes late. As we were meeting in a Cafe Nero it meant we could have a pre-shop coffee, and I could play with Reuben who was in good humour. He loves Mike and Mike is fantastic with him, playing peek a boo behind his hat. Playtime over we went almost next door to a clothes shop whose name I just never remember. It’s like a mental block. I was able to get two or three good outfits for Reuben ready for Christmas though as usual Yvonne and I battled over it. I just ignore her and do my own thing but poor Mike got it in the neck today for siding with me. Yvonne refused to be treated but I wouldn’t be thwarted.

We moved along to another shop and Mike got a trolley to push. Both Yvonne and I put our choices in it. Wen we got to the till, Mike was conveniently ‘in the way’ by the counter so I was able to pay for both lots. Where there’s a will……….. there’s a relative, there’s a way. We managed another shop where Yvonne occupied Mike for me while I went to get something for Christmas. It’s very large and quite awkward to carry. We stopped for another drink then Mike decided to take the big box back to the car. Yvonne and I wandered in the same direction. She had to be off soon to prepare for work and to let Reuben have a little sleep. Mike and I said our goodbyes and headed for the car to drive to a supermarket for lunch and some bread. I had a really quite nice liver and onions with mash and peas while Mike had something called a Hunter’s Stack. We picked up the bread and headed home, arriving about 2.00 pm.

I worked till 4.30 pm and couldn’t catch up. At 7.30 pm I came back to it and well over a hundred more had been added, It took me until about 11.00 pm to clear mail up to 9.30 pm. I stopped to give myself time for this post and will go back for a short time soon. The rest will have to wait until tomorrow. I’m going to have to bribe the web postie to drop my mail off a high cliff somewhere.


I was up at 3.20 am this morning and thought the head start would help me stay abreast of the mail, especially as Mike said he was having a lie in so I could work undisturbed.  By 6.30 am I hadn’t caught up with last night’s messages and they were still coming in, but it was no excuse not to stop and feed the fish and take my meds early. I was pretty sure I needed a coffee to keep me alert. The fish didn’t want to co-operate and looked set to stay in their corner, that is until I was a little forceful with the food slot cover that caused a vase to topple which I then had to grab at banging my elbow on the edge of the tank in the process. Don’t worry, I saved the vase even if I didn’t save my arm. And the fish?, Well, the bang of my arm had them flying round the tank like they’d been scalded. They worked up a healthy appetite while I was entertained for a couple of seconds. I had my tablets and made a coffee to take back to my room. I was still smiling.

By 8.30 am I had my head above water and decided to get dressed. I got my shoes on too ready to leave the house at 9.00 am which I did and headed for the Post Office to send a parcel off. It had to be treated as a small parcel because I’d used a padded envelope as it was a perfect size. Annoying as it doubled the cost but hey-ho, it’s worth it. I also needed to nip into Pauline’s for cigarettes and my TV mag for next week. I was home by 9.15 am and Mike was still snoring in his bed. It was time to get back to work. It was only about twenty minutes or so before I heard Mike stir so I went to make him a drink  before coming back here to finish off the latest batch. Once I’d done that I went through rather than refresh the screen and worry about it. The postman came and knocked at the door. Mike answered  only to be told “You’re not David”. “No”, he said.” I’m that one” pointing at his name on one of the parcels being delivered. He took his off to open and came back a few moments later to pass me the package as it was some watch boxes he’d ordered for me. By way of fair exchange I passed him one to open as I knew the contents were for him and he was delighted to find a Dragon broach inside to replace one he lost recently.

Neither of us was in a rush but Mike decided to get dressed since I already was. We were both bidding for somethings on ebay but there was no point in waiting in for them as we’d placed our maximum bids already. It seemed a good idea to drag me away from the computer and go for a coffee in Flint. On the way there we decided to head for ALDI to see if anything interesting is due in. There was no chance I was coming out of there without spending so I bought a continental rhubarb and strawberry , custard tart and a few other bits and bobs. After that we headed for Temptations. It was late at 12.30 pm and it was lunchtime crowded so we didn’t get much of a chance to talk to the girls beyond Hello, and Ceri was off anyway. At least they got some chocolates to improve their day. Once we’d done we headed to pick up some iced lollies and went home. After unpacking, I got the freezer as usual while the evil toad got the easy jobs in the kitchen. There was no time to worry about the mail as Mike decided we’d go to the Ivy. We were over half way there when I realised I’d forgotten my tablets. Tough luck, I wasn’t turning back, it was already 2.00 pm.

There was just Tariq and Shella on duty but the greeting was as lovely as always. Tariq made the drinks as we decided on food. Once we’d ordered there was time for a cigarette outside. The meal arrived just a few moments after we sat down again. Tariq was in trouble for chatting with us instead of delivering our meals and Shella had to do it after cooking them. We were there quite a long time and it was 4.00 pm before we got back. I was only able to get half an hour in before Mike called me for the antique show. I didn’t get chance to come back through as Lee arrived then and gave me some very good news, I shall be a Great Uncle again in about April. He and Jen will make great parents. Dil and Matt arrived soon after and I had to id a smile when Matt cam in on crutches. I wasn’t smiling because he was hurt but because he did it falling off the couch. Lee shared the baby news with is Dad who was pleased as well.

For some reason we stuck to cards tonight. First was Nomination Whist which Mike won, followed by Crazy 8’s which was mine . Le had to leave then so we played 2 games of cribbage, Dil and Matt v Mike and I. Both games were quite tight but it was honours even at the end. Dil and Hopalong left at 9.30 pm an I had to have something to eat as I’d had no diabetic tabs today at all. The rhubarb and strawberry custard tart was wonderful. I washed up as quickly as possible and came through at 10.00 pm to find the computer had crashed because of a windows error and it needed rebooting. When I finally got back in there were 176 emails from this morning until tonight . I almost screamed. I did as many as possible before starting the blog and will goand have another try now till 12.30 am then it’s bed no matter what.


I haven’t the faintest what time I woke up this morning. I lay there trying so very hard to go back to sleep. It seemed like hours but I suspect it was less than one. When I finally accepted it wasn’t going to work and swung my legs out of bed it was 5.01 am. It didn’t feel like I’d slept much but since the time for trying seems to be about 1.00 am these days who’s going to argue with that.There is the bonus that I get a head start on the mail, sometimes I find myself replying to messages not even written yet, especially this week as we head towards All Hallows Eve.

I worked until 6.30 am then went through to the kitchen. There was no sign of life in the tank except from the weed growing an inch a minute in there. Mie said we must do the tank this week and today is the day. I didn’t put food in but it’s Mike who’ll be putting his hands in there late so why should I worry? I took my meds and made a drink. As I was about to go back to my room I hear Mike’s alarm go off. I don’t understand it. We have no plans for the day, why set the alarm? I turned the kettle on in case and went to my room. I needn’t have worried, the alarm stopped and I heard no movement. I’d settled into work again when the alarm went off a second time. There was a more forceful thud as it was turned off this time and peace reigned again. I worked on. There seem to be more annoying messages than usual today,or perhaps it’s just me being more sensitive to them. The usual ones were there, two from banks telling me they couldn’t pay my standing orders this month and I need to verify some details. Since I bank with neither of them I don’t think I’ll be rushing into that. The annoying ones were purporting to be from two big supermarket chains and started  You haven’t collected your voucher from ASDA/TESCO yet. When you click on them it comes up blank and you’re expected to press a box for more information. It’s only then I noticed they don’t seem to be coming from the firms but from individuals. Since I already have a virus on here I don’t really want to start sneezing.

Mike managed to get up about 9.30 am again and completely unaided. I stopped working and went to make his drink and chat to him. When he’d done we decided to start on the tank. I was the poor sod who drew the short straw for sucking on the pipe to start the water flowing so I ended up with a mouth full of manky water and snails. Blecchh. Mike removed all the ornaments trying to avoid pulling out any of the last four fish in there. I pulled the weed off and as many snails as possible to dispose of them. We don’t want all of them out as they help the water clarity, and we don’t want to kill off the assassin snails either. He carefully hoovered the bottom to clear as much old food and fish excrement as possible then we started filling the tank again with the now cleaned ornaments and fresh treated water. I recovered one assassin from the mounds of weed and hope that the other one was still in the tank somewhere. Big Al was zipping back and forth agitated by Mike’s movements in the water. I advised Mike to count his fingers afterwards. I couldn’t be sure if the three plecs were all there and safe but I know I saw one of them.

That took us to past midday and though I know I should have cooked I really didn’t feel like it. I offered to treat Mike somewhere. That was a bit of a mistake as neither of us was capable of making a decision. In the end we were heading up towards Holywell when Mike saw the Mill on the Hill and said “What about there?” Since we saw a sign about Sunday lunches, we thought we’d try. When we’d parked up we noticed that to have a Sunday lunch required waiting till Sunday so we settled on something sooner and had a nice home-made burger that came with Bovril’d potatoes. They were actually quite nice.


Back outside we were next to the Holy Well of St. Winefride and Mike asked a couple of questions. The story surrounding St Winefride is patently a myth but there are records enough from 1300 years ago to show she existed as did the other main characters. There are records to show she was buried in Gwytherin before being taken to Shrewsbury ( for those of you who’ve seen Cadfael). The Lourdes of Wales as the well is called is still in existence though I firmly believe the spring that feeds it is different now. There are ample signs of the healings from the crutches left behind though I won’t speculate as to what the healings can be attributed to. Anyway, since it’s only 60p a head for gentlefolk of our age I took him round.

From there we went home again and were in the house by 3.00 pm. That gave me an hour and a half to work before Antiques time and Mike chance to look up ebay. I paid for something I’d won while I was out, and then started work. I was 5 hours adrift and there were a lot of messages. When I went through to watch TV at 4.30 am  I was still only at 2.00 pm in the mail box. By the time I got back here at 9.00 pm I was 7 hours adrift and almost wetting myself. I broke off at 11.00 pm to do the blog and now have to go back to it for a while. Night All. x


After the third beep it will be 3.00 am precisely. I nipped to the loo to download a river and a smile of relief spread across my face. It must have started a chain reaction as the moment I set foot back in my bedroom I heard Mike leave his and go . What a trailblazer I am.  I’ve never understood how he can go without actually waking up though. Imagine the fun if I ever decide to cover the top of the loo in cling film……..

I turned the computer on and started work. There were a few left over from last night where I hadn’t refreshed the screen and downloaded the last of them but there were far more for this morning with Halloween greetings coming in early from Australia and other places in the Southern Hemisphere.  I responded likewise though I’ve never been a follower of the Halloween traditions having always followed the UK traditions of Guy Fawkes night for November 5th with the fireworks and bonfire. It reminded me of the days when I and my friends would be carrying a dummy made up of old clothes in a wheelbarrow and station ourselves outside a pub in the early evening calling ‘Penny for the Guy’ as people came and went. Usually those going being the most generous. We could often buy quite a few fireworks and sweets with our ill gotten gains before the dummy was finally placed atop the bonfire for burning. The tradition seems to be dying off now and Halloween replacing it, though the bonfires and the fireworks still take place.

At 6.30 am I went through and turned the light on in the tank. I managed to see two of the plecs today and Big Al certainly seemed to be in a better mood. Maybe the weed was crowding him.  I took my meds and prepared my  mug for a drink but before I made it I did all my drugs for the next week in the appropriate pots. That all took me to 7.15 am so I made my drink and took it through to the bedroom. I just carried on working trying to keep apace with what was coming in. I texted my niece to see how she is after a small operation yesterday and during the course of our conversation found out what she wanted for Christmas, which I knew was going to be music. As time went on I received a text from Mujo to see whether Mike and I would like to meet them at Betws y Coed as it was set to be a fair day. I replied I’d have to ask Mike ( when he woke) but I was pretty sure the answer would be yes. As it was approaching 9.00 am I made a coffee to take through and as I stepped into the room he woke up. Perfect timing. After giving him 10 seconds to gather his wits ( few as they are) I relayed the message and he agreed. I sent a message to Muriel and said we’d meet them about 11.00 am there. After getting ready and me crying bitterly as I wasn’t up to date with the post we left the house about 10.00 am and after a minor detour set off. I suggested a journey which took us to Bodelywyddan, towards Betws yn Rhos but diverting to Llanfairtalhaiarn, on to Llangernyw near Gwytherin ( of St Winefride fame) and on to Llanrwst  then on to Betws y Coed itself. It’s a beautiful place nestling in the Snowdonia range and has a fantastic little railway station where you can still take a trip on a steam train. We were able to park almost next to where MuJo were waiting and I passed over her birthday presents to go in the car. It’s her 65th on Bonfire night which is Nov 5th making her one day Mike’s elder, a point he never lets her forget. We had a nice wander down the parade of shops by the station until approaching midday we came to a cafe for lunch. MuJo insisted I’d paid last week and it was their turn. To be honest I couldn’t remember but I insisted I would do the afternoon coffee and cakes. After lunch we carried on and did the last few shops where Mike was thrilled to bits to be able to buy me a Christmas present though I wanted to buy it myself and not put him to the expense.

We left the parade and wandered into the small town centre which I love and visited a few more shops where we were frequently open mouthed at their London prices. We walked round an art gallery displaying the works of some very talented people. I was quite jealous.  Finally we started heading back towards the parade where MuJo also bought me a Christmas present after nagging me to point out things I liked. It was hard to find a balance between something not so cheap they’d be offended and not so expensive I couldn’t live with myself. I think I managed it. We went for a drink and in Mujo’s case a cake each, huge and sticky in John’s case. Then at about 3.30 pm we said goodbye and Mike and I made our way home. This time driving to Glan Conwy and taking the expressway. The day was taking it’s toll on me and I was half nodding most of the way. Everytime my head dropped I’d wake up again and it must have been funny hearing me trying to continue any conversation where I’d left off. We got home a little after 4.30 pm and dashed in to see the final day of the week’s antique hunt. At 5.15 pm I excused myself and came through to find over 200 messages from the almost 8 hours I’d been missing from the screen. I had to work like heck until 6.30 pm when I went for a shower after Mike had washed my hair then he took my place in the shower while I went to make something to eat. I sat with him until 8.00 pm then unable to contain myself longer dashed back in here to carry on battling. It’s ben a hard slog but I’ve broken the back of it now.

Reuben's new shoes that light up as he walks.

Reuben’s new shoes that light up as he walks..

More new shoes.

More new shoes.



You may think me idle in comparison to my usual recorded times but I didn’t get up until 5.57 am today. I turned my light off last night just before 1.00 am and must have fallen asleep fairly quickly. For some reason ( probably in a bottle labelled MAX) my bladder hadn’t and decided to wake me none too gently at 1.50 am. On going to the loo I found Mike was still up watching TV ( Heaven help him at 7.00 am) and then I had to have a cigarette because I couldn’t nod off again. When I did get up my bladder was still ready to remind me who’s boss in our partnership and help me pass the equivalent of the Thames. I was surprised Mike didn’t wake up screaming “Man the lifeboats, women and children first.”

I made a start on the mail and have now decided to hang a notice from the screen to the effect that there’s a vicious dog here to keep the postman from delivering any more. It’s not even the idiot frauds anymore since I can generally just dispose of those to the waste bin without reading, it’ some retweets of tweets that have me puzzled. Do I keep thanking/answering the person who wrote the original tweet, do I write and thank anyone from the original tweet who now answers it and includes me or do I thank the person who did the retweet for doing so even though it’s not my tweet they’re retweeting. I’m all of a twitter now.

At 6.45 I strolled through to the kitchen to clear my head. I turned the main light on an went over to the tank and put that light on too. My pal Big Al stayed near the front watching me and seemingly listening as I spoke to him. I think the war is over. If not, at least a truce is in place and I don’t think it serves any purpose to count up the battles won and lost do you? I was also fortunate to see all three of the plecs. Everyone survives. I came over all warm and wondered whether I should change my hopes of letting them pass on and putting the tank out of commission or adding a few more fish for colour. Wimp ! I took my meds and made myself a coffee. Before I could take it back to my room Mike’s alarm went off. With a plaintive sigh I made a drink, took it through, placed it on a bedside table and informed him it was there for which I was rewarded with s aeries of unintelligible grunts. I returned to the kitchen and emptied the rubbish bin and the food waste bin, collected the waste bin from my room which went into the big bin bag, saw to the ash trays and took the rubbish out ready for collection.

Coming back in I saw Mike had turned over and gone straight back to sleep as expected and he’d turned his alarm off altogether. Never one to shy away from a challenge I gathered my deepest voice from the soles of my boots and growled ” Don’t forget your coffee, it’s going cold.” You can add the Welsh accent if you can imagine it. Mike shot up in bed and said “YesrightOK, I’ll turn the music off now.” If anything it was a dead cert it was Queen he was listening to in that little head of his and since I couldn’t share it I had no sympathy for him having to turn it off. He did even turn over properly and go towards his drink. Job done ! I went back to the kitchen to claim mine and take it through to my bedroom to do a few extra messages and then to get dressed.

I know some of my readers are of the gentle sex so I suggest at this point you sit down as I don’t want to shock you. I know also that some may mock and suggest I’ve started writing Christmas fairy stories but I promise this is true. Mike was dressed and ready to leave by 7.40 am and we were at the Supermarket by one minute past eight of the clock. So, what d’you think of that then. Yes, Amazing Stories made an offer for the sole publication but I wanted to disseminate it as widely as possible. One the way out to the car he even cracked a joke and claimed to be awake. None of the cash machines contained money this morning though one lied and said it contained only £50 notes. I had to use my card and ask for cashback. We actually managed to whiz round the shop this morning as I wasn’t concentrating too much on food. I wanted to start buying my selection boxes and a few other things which did include mince pies. We had time for a nice coffee afterwards, well a coffee anyway.

Once the car was packed we took the road to Flint. Actually it was already going there so we gave it a lift. Mike was pleased to be able to pull into a parking bay in front of Temptations. He was really upset a few weeks ago when someone else used his bay. Typical Mike he had to dash off to unload his bladder despite the sign saying the loos are for customers only. We won’t be customers for half an hour yet, some people have no patience. I took a very slow walk in the direction of my favourite shop until he caught up. I found a few stocking presents there and Mike found a tape measure he wanted. We were going to walk down to my next favourite shop when Mike detoured me into the pet shop first to look at the fish. There were some really nice ones in from glass fish to Siamese fighting fish of which I could only have more than one if they were female. There were even some quite small Big Al’s and a lovely red tipped shark I quite fancied. Even the weather loach looked good. Maybe I know too many politicians but I’m quite happy with bottom feeders. Because I knew we were going for a drink to torment Ceri soon, I managed to come out empty handed. We did get to my second favourite shop next where I picked up a few more gifts and a jar of sweets for The Ivy later.

Next stop Temptations where Mike teased Ceri about her love life and suggested she’d be better off with him and he wouldn’t even move in with her ( her fiance just has). He teased Kyle about his hair while at least Kyle still has some and we drank our coffee one of which was free today thanks to our loyalty card. Mike thinks it’s like being paid to come in and terrorise the staff. Once we’d finished we left, had a quick peek in the shop next door and then headed towards home. Since we had no frozen food Mike suggested we bypass home and carry on to the Ivy. I was happy to do that. It was fairly busy in there and Tariq, Angela and Rob were all on the counter as we walked in. I put the jar of sweets on the counter and went to slip my jacket off at our table. As soon as Tariq had finished serving he came for a hug and dragged us off to look at the frame he’s done on one of Mike’s pictures. His supplies hadn’t arrived in time to do the second one. The frame was really nice and set the picture off well. Mike was pleased which was good. As we went back to the table Tariq went to make our drinks while Mike and I decided what to have. I went for a beef and mushroom panini. It should have had melted cheese and horseradish sauce but I asked for those to be left off. Mike had some sticky ribs in a BBQ sauce which he enjoyed. We managed to talk to Angie a bit and just a quick hello to Rob.

Lunch over we had our hugs goodbye and headed for home. It was getting on for 3.00 pm before we made it. I quickly put away the shopping. Mike answered the door to the post van and brought in 3 parcels I’ve been waiting for. Then it was time to attack the post. OMG 182 since I went out. By 6.00 pm I was down to 20 but had to take a break. It was time for TV. I stayed with Mike until 8.30 pm just after an excellent programme on William Marshall who is credited with perhaps being the original Knight or Chevalier always living up to the code of conduct and being a prime mover in Magna Carta. Fascinating stuff on a man who served 4 different monarchs. But, as 8.30 came I had to return to work. I’ve taken a break from messages to see to the blog and will return to it soon.

My eldest grandson Danny and his girlfriend Stacey.

My eldest grandson Danny and his girlfriend Stacey.

My youngest grandson, smart boy. Gets more like his pops every day. lol

My youngest grandson, smart boy. Gets more like his pops every day. lol

Have a Great New Week everyone. Hugs Galore.


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