The Bells, The Bells. & I Wuff You.

Sunday 16th Nov 2014

I was pretty tired last night and couldn’t read for long. I think my light was out before 1.00 pm.  I slept until 4.24 am and was up with the larks, or rather I was up before them to make their breakfast. At least there was chance to make a start on the mail, and what a bunch there was. Last night’s blog seemed to have a very good response. Of course I had to get a tissue out and dab my eyes as so many thought it funny I’d almost choked to death  but we live in an odd world. Not one iota of sympathy that my tablets were wasted, that my wall was a mess or that my toes almost pointed up.

It was getting towards 7.00 am when I realised I was tired. It was the bruised forehead that gave me my first clue. Anyone watching would have thought I was trying to do a karate trick of breaking my desk in half. I just hope there were no garbage emails as well. I haven’t heard of any to date. I went through to the kitchen and played sneaky by turning the tank on first to see what I could catch them doing. Thinking about that statement now, it sound like I’m a voyeur but I’m not. Everyone was swimming about slowly with the exception of the Royal Bodyguards the dumb plecs, and his Majesty Big Al who upon seeing me swam lazily towards me, casually flicked his tail in disgust and swam slowly away again in an ‘I’m nor scared of you’ pose. I have the feeling I’m in the fishy equivalent of the dog house again.

Shoulders slumped I turned away and put the main light on and took my meds. Fresh ones, not those from the wall. I made a coffee and took it through to the lounge. It didn’t take long o drink and so I close my eyes for a minute that became an hour. It was almost 8.30 am before I went back to the bedroom to work. There was a lot of concentration going on so any early noise didn’t penetrate but finally I realised Mike was up. It was only 9.20 am, it was Sunday. I went through to make him a drink and he told me I’d been snoring away quite happily at 3.15 am when he’d been woken by a bang and padded round the house looking for the source. Unusually I’d heard nothing. He hadn’t even gone to bed until 2.00 am which made the puzzle of him getting up even bigger. I came back to finish the message I’d been working on when I’d heard him and then joined him.

We nattered aimlessly for a while…a long while since we didn’t get dressed until about 10.30 am. Then at 11.00 am we were on our way out and heading for Prestatyn. Once we reached there I suggested going to the Tesco Supermarket to look for something and while there Mike bought me tea and coffee pods for my machine and also bought sweets for The Ivy. We went to the shop I wanted to pick up some hessian Christmas sacks, some gift bags and a couple of small stocking presents for Reuben. I couldn’t understand why Mike was piling the bags on his arm until we were at the till and he tried to pay for them. There was battle royal as no way was I letting him pay for my shopping especially when it involved gifts for others.”Right” he said, “I’m paying for lunch then”. And he did even though I tried to. The Ivy was very quiet when we went in and Tariq was talking to us about doing Sunday lunches in the future though Shella isn’t keen and prefers to do different meals for those who don’t want the traditional. I can understand both camps as can Mike. We both like the traditional meal but there are plenty of places serving that. We probably won’t move no matter what they serve though a lot of the specials don’t appeal to me. I did drop plenty of hints that the Hotpot from last week was a welcome addition. By the time we left the place had started filling up quite nicely so maybe Tariq will have a rethink.

We left and came home so Mike could start his journey back to the Midlands. Ah, I’ve just figured out why he isn’t very tall, surely the Midlands is when the Baggins’s live in Tolkien’s book? Just a sec, I need to start running about now. He was calling it at World of Pets on his way to see if they had any female fighters like mine since they’re so colourful. That left me on my tod to try and catch up. A monstrous job given how long it had been since I touched it. 152 were waiting. I started at 3.00 pm and finished at 5.58 pm. At that point I needed a break badly and went through to watch some TV. I ended up with a Sherlock Holmes film starring Rupert Everett. I watched it while demolishing a piece of strawberry and rhubarb tart that Mike had had less than half of yesterday. There’s enough for my tea tomorrow too.

At 8.00 pm I turned off, went through to take my tabs and found the fish light still on. I waited till Big Al turned his back before turning it off then I legged it to my room. Someone had been very busy again so there was another pile waiting but as most were very complimentary I was in a forgiving mood. I finished those at 11.00 pm to start the blog and have no idea how many are waiting now. I may just have an early night as I’m being MuJo’d tomorrow.

Two very clever pictures doctored by Yvonne using an app on her phone called Cut Me In. Brilliant.

The trip to Paris Ju and I never got.

The trip to Paris Ju and I never got.

A change of venue,

A change of venue,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monday.

I didn’t get my early night after all but Somnos must have known he was risking his kneecaps to mess with me so I didn’t wake until 5.27 am today. Naturally today being the day of the visit I might have forgiven him for waking me a bit earlier. As usual I made the trek to the loo then came back and started on the mail. I needed to clear as much as possible. At 7.00 am I went to feed the fish. All of them moved to the back of the tank except Big Al who was joined by Little Al presumably for lessons in intimidation. It was the wrong morning to try glaring at me. “Boo” I said and watched Little Al skitter to join the others who seemed frozen in the water, little fins going ten to the dozen just to stay in place. Big Al had not moved of course when I’d spoken the first time. “Well, do you want feeding or not” I asked in  very uppity voice. The others seemed to take heart from this and started to swim about normally. With a last glance Big Al turned as slowly as possible and swam over to Little Al as if to say “That’s how to do it.” I placed some food in the slot and resigned myself to warfare again. No more walking in and asking how my little fishes are. I couldn’t decide whether to turn quickly or to go slowly as had Big Al. I was resigned to doing it with dignity whatever. I didn’t quite full that off though as my feet turned one way and my body the other so even with my feet now pointing away, my body was still facing the fish. I almost had to unscrew myself from the floor to re-adjust my spinal column.

I took my sprays, had a pre-food tab, took my normal meds, smoked a timing cigarette and put the toaster on. As the toast was doing I prepared a coffee. The toast was nice with lashings of butter I could have floated a yacht in. It took two kitchen rolls just to clean my moustache and fingers. If I’f had anyone to kiss I’d have slid off them. I took the two post-food tabs with my coffee and went back to work. I couldn’t work for long though as I needed to be dressed before Pauline ( the cleaner not the shop) got here. I’d just made it before the front door opened meaning I needed a change of clothes already. I asked for some help to change Mike’s bed but as I couldn’t find nails we settled on just the bedding. That went quite well. Then I asked if we could do the lounge with visitors due this morning. I returned to work to try and catch up. Next thing I know is the sound of breaking glass. I have a tall stand in the hallway that takes tealights. About a dozen of them. Some in clear glass and some few in red glass. Pauline had run the hoover into the base of the stand and one of the red glasses was broken. I have two spare clear glass ones but no red ones. I don’t use real tealights there as it’s directly beneath the smoke detector so I shall have to check and see if the battery driven ones are intact before Christmas as they serve as my hall decorations. I have one group of lights intended to go round the lounge window for festive cheer.

Pauline left at 10.10 am and I came away (screaming) from the computer so I was ready for MuJo as they arrived. I went through to the lounge but decided against smoking in there so wandered into the kitchen and turned the fan on. It was about 10.45 am when they arrived. I saw to drinks and then listened to the story about why they were visiting today which is very unusual for them. They have a very full week ahead of them and they didn’t want to miss another week which is nice. The suggestion was we went to the Bells( of St Mary’s) for lunch for a change and then into Prestatyn if that was OK. I didn’t want to tell them I’d been there with Mike yesterday but I didn’t mind another visit anyway. Then John asked when was the last time I’d been there and I had to confess which started another round of ‘where shall we go then’ talks. In the end I managed o convince them the original plan was fine and we set off about 11.20 am.

It wasn’t too crowded when we got there which was nice and we had a choice of seats. It was my turn to pay and no-one argued this time for a change. We ordered 3 carvery meals and each had a coffee or a soft drink and the bill was still less than £20.00. You’d expect to have a poor meal for that money but not so. I do like the Bells, they might not allow me half a cow on my plate but they’re not mean with it, but everything else is help yourself which is great since I’m partial to my potatoes. And before anyone (anywhere) says anything, I had leeks and carrots too ( No way was I having sprouts or cauliflower cheese-ugh). Muriel had Turkey and John had Gammon with Turkey. There is also a half chicken option and even a fish and chips. Mike and I have said for a long time we’re going to go there for breakfast since that’s another help yourself meal and If I’m lucky they might do fried bread. The meal was very nice but we all left their full and headed down the road to Prestatyn. First stop the pound shop where I did buy a couple more sacks and a few other things. We then went for a coffee before John went to guard the car and Mu and I had a wander round M & S. Before heading home we had a trip to ALDI where you’ll be surprised to know I bought nothing.

At home they didn’t stay long as it was starting to get dark. It was about 4.00 pm. After I’d waved them off I scorched the path in my speed to get in and start work again. I’d been away 6 hours and who knows what I could expect. Well I got 183 and knew I couldn’t stop work until they’d gone as there would be another batch waiting from 4.00 pm onwards. No break for TV programmes until I finished at 6.55 pm. I went through to get some strawberry and rhubarb tart and watched a couple of episodes of MASH. At 8.00 pm I came back in and had 102 from that 4 hour stretch. I finished those at 10.15 pm and decided to do this early  because I may decide to leave the post early tonight and try for sleep if I start yawning.

Talk to the hand pussycat

Talk to the hand pussycat

Tuesday.

It was 5.08 am this morning when I swung my legs out of bed and groped for my slippers with my feet. Years ago if Yvonne had been around she’s have gone “Yuk, tarantula toes” before I got my slippers on. It’s been so long since I saw my feet they might even have a comb-over by now. Anyway, I didn’t have he light on yet so I wouldn’t have sen them even if I could. I have a light cord over my bed but I never use it in case I tug the emergency cord by mistake. It’s a pain having to explain to the control what a divvy you are  and believe me I speak from experience. I did a sharp left by my chair and turned the light on as I left the room to head for the loo and my rendition of  Ol’ Man River complete with sound effects.

When I eventually got back I slipped my dressing gown on as there was a little bite in the air and then sat down and got ready for battle. The machine didn’t take too long to warm up and I was soon in the thick of it. I didn’t dare open the photograph one loopy woman had sent me as it would have meant putting teatowels over all the pictures in my room, especially the one with the teddy bear. My wife was no prude but I’m not sure she’d appreciate me getting both barrels at this time of the day, and as for my parents and grandparents, well…. nuff said?  I did also have a new psychic who is quite sure I won’t bother to answer this first message. Well she got that right  so why didn’t she wait until she was sure I would answer? If she’s thinking of wearing me down with messages she doesn’t know how many times I applied the Chinese Water Torture to myself in case anyone ever wanted me as a spy. I never broke down as I have infinite patience right up to the point when I haven’t.

Most of my mail was of the normal variety. I won’t say boring as it certainly entertains me. The trouble is there’s just so much of it. I took my normal 7.00 am break in order to make myself suffer feeding the fish. We seem to have undergone a sea change today though as Big Al is following Little Al around like a lost lamb unless of course Little Al is having exams and Big Al is following him round to score him. I’ll have to wait and see if Little Al tries to stare me down. Morecambe and Wise were floating about aimlessly looking pretty and Sharkey was having fun nudging a couple of the plecs though he gets no joy from the bigger one, all he’s likely to get there is a broken nose. There was no rush on for me today as I’ve asked Yvonne if she minds me skipping my Chester trip this week. I’ll miss her of course but at least I’m guaranteed an argument free day. I’m so under the thumb. For anyone who doubts this, please read the 100% factual My Barsetshire Diary.

After feeding time for the fish it was feeding time for me. I wasn’t having breakfast, just my usual array of meds. Pills and potions galore, you don’t need a meal. I made myself a coffee and there seemed less sediment coming in the water today, mayhap they’ve sorted the problem. I took the drink  back to my room but before I restarted work I got dressed. About 10.00 am I was starting to flag. I could tell that as I’d leaned so far forward I could see under my seat. Trouble was the computer wasn’t down there. It wasn’t easy getting back up again either and I contemplated shouting the postman for help when I heard him deliver . I played that scenario out in my head first and realised the front door was still locked. If he wasn’t to break it down he’d need to come in through the lounge window. That was possible of course using he handle of his bag to pull the catch but then he’d set off all the window alarms and the police would come. They might anyway since my neighbours were bound to report a burglar. By the time they got here I’d probably have straightened up and then be charged with wasting police time.

The postie had brought me a book I’d ordered though it was a lot smaller than expected. Women tell me they have a lot of that in their lives. There were no measurements given on ebay though, but it’s still a nice book. I have one (somewhere) already which is a lot bigger ( women say they hear that a lot too) full of family history though it does need updating. Talking of books, my next email was from one of those companies that offers cashback on all purchases made through them. I signed up a long time ago but I’ve never done anything with them, I don’t know why. I also had an email from The Works who were offering free postage on a £10.00 spend and many of the prices were excellent like 5 books for £10.00 when they were £3.99 individually. When buying through this firm I was offered 21% cashback so it seemed to good a chance to miss. I still needed some stocking gifts and this was a great chance to lessen the list.

At 11.45 I ceased work and went to see about lunch. Braised beef steaks, baby boiled potatoes in herb butter and some mixed veg. It was ready in time for me to  watch my lunchtime antique programme. Halfway through I dropped my tray off in the kitchen ready to be washed and came back to watch the rest. I saw some but somehow I managed to miss the end. Instead of going through at 1.00 pm I didn’t wake until half past. I washed the pots, put the washing machine on then realised I hadn’t changed my bed and added the bedding to the current load. I’ll have to do it in the morning. The work had mounted up again and it kept me going until 4.30 pm when it was almost time for Ugo and Reuben to come. An email from Yvonne tells me she told Reuben he was seeing me tonight and he went to the door to try and get out to come then. They both missed their morning mooch around the shops this morning.

Ugo arrived and couldn’t get in as I hadn’t unlocked the door all day. Wen I opened it Ugo was on the low steps folding the trolley and Reuben was on the top step with his hand out waiting for me to old it and bring him in. That must be the last time he allowed me to old his hand. Once I got him in the lounge and removed his coat, nay, even before I’d removed his coat there were ten pairs of hands picking things up.  Ugo asked if I could cope and he’d go to pick up a meal. “Sure” I said. What an idiot. How long since I had a child this size around me. He ran me ragged until finally I picked him up and showed him the fish. I knew he wouldn’t be worried by anything Big Al could do. When Ugo got back we’d gravitated to the mirror so I could ask who was there. I put Reuben down and we moved to plate the meals up. Ugo was seeing to the sausage and chips he’d got Reuben and giving him pieces. Reuben was going from the kitchen to the lounge, depositing the food on the rug and returning for more. Ugo went through with his meal and sat with Reuben on his lap trying to feed both of them. Reuben didn’t like that and threw a paddy. As he was put down he swept everything off the table with his multitude of hands and somehow turned the TV channel over. Being told he was a naughty boy didn’t seem to have much effect. I had my sausage and chips once enough time had elapsed from taking my pre-food tablet. Reuben was still none too happy but brightened up when Ugo brought down a little toy dog that said “I wuff you, woof, woof” when pressed. A wonderful gift from delightful young author Patricia Carrigan whom I adore like a granddaughter. A little light came on where the heart would be which matched the light in Reuben’s eyes when he saw it.

They weren’t there too long after that as Reuben needed his bath before bed. No way was he going to give up the dog so I suggested he take it with him and I hope Ugo had a quiet journey . I had a quick tidy up and then came through. Except for taking my tablets I’ve been here ever since stuffing coffee creams down my face and working.It’s now 11.00 pm and time to have one last go at the mail so I can have a little read tonight.

Wednesday.

You’ll be pleased to hear today’s epistle will be short. Last night I turned the light off at one and fell asleep. I was up again at 1.35 am. Nothing could get me back to sleep there so I thought I’d try my chair in the lounge. I don’t know how long it took but I did nod off there. When I woke it was 4.51 am and it took my ages to see that because a) my neck was at a 90 degree angle, and b) the only light was from a lamp outside and I had to look at my watch as I hadn’t brought my clock through.  Guiding myself down the passage towards my bedroom with my neck at that angle wasn’t easy and I kept hitting it on doorframes etc. I rubbed it with Fiery Jack ointment to ease it and then nipped to the loo. For anyone who’s never encountered Fiery Jack before, let me tell you something I should have remembered of old. Wash your hands FIRST even though you’ll be washing them straight afterwards as usual. Also, carry tissues as the tears will be streaming down your face. Washing only makes it worse. I once had a bad back and after easing my back decided to relax in a hot bath. That’s what I should have remembered today to.

When the pain subsided a bit I was able to gingerly go back to start work. All I can say is there was plenty of it and kit kept me going until lunchtime. I had to stand up and move about a bit for comfort and for the postman’s visit where he brought some jewellery I’ve been waiting for.  After lunch I knew I was tired and allowed myself an hour though I didn’t sleep the whole time as the chemist brought round the missing bit of last week’s prescription. Very shortly after that someone came to read the meters. They’re supposed to make an appointment so Yvonne can arrange for someone to be here and the man told me he’d got data that said two appointments have been made, one today, one tomorrow. How stupid to send someone out to read the two meters on two different days. I let him in to do the gas meter on the understanding he moved any obstructions himself which was agreed by British Gas. He was happy to do so and put it back too. I had to get ladders for him to read the electric meter which is in a high cupboard outside. He was soon gone but I am cross that they didn’t make an appointment to do it. I went back to work after that until 4.30 pm and only gave up then in case Lee came early.

Dil and Matt arrived at 5.30 pm and I’d just made drinks when there was a text from Lee to say he couldn’t make it. It seems the traffic was very bad which is no surprise as it was rush hour. I enjoyed having the boys round and there was plenty of laughter, especially when Matt tapped the table for luck and a chunk fell off underneath. In Yahtzee Matt won three games, Dil two and I had just one. My bottom lip came out but no-one cared. In Nomination which most of you know is MY game, I was last. The scores weren’t a million miles apart but I lost. The bottom lip quivered, but no-one cared. In Crazy 8’s I wiped the floor with the opposition, winning comfortably. The bottom lip retracted to be replaced by the smuggest of smug grins, everyone cared and hit me. They left at 9.30 pm so I locked the door in case anyone had left a coat behind or their keys and started on the tidying up, the washing of the pots and the taking of the meds. It was about 9.45 pm when I came through and started work on the accumulated mail which I managed to finish for 12.10 am  The blog is shorter than usual so I can go to bed before I’m due to get up again.    P.S. I leaned down a moment ago and snapped the microphone off my headset so I’ll have to buy a new one this weekend.

Thursday.

I woke at 5.21 am which was quite good after last night’s late night.I was convinced I wanted to go back to sleep but it just wasn’t happening so I had to apply some of *Granny Weatherwax’s ‘Headology’ to convince myself to move. First and foremost was the promise of some breakfast a little later. I swung out of bed with such momentum I almost overbalanced. I was of course reluctant to admit that knowing some smartar*e will say how they knew I was an unbalanced individual. However I shall trust my judgement and suggest I don’t follow people capable of such slanders.

* Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg are part of Terry Pratchett’s Witches trilogy. Fantastic reading.

After logging on this morning I found myself logging off again compliments of a Windows update. Those thing can be a menace if you don’t notice the warning bar at the bottom and it closes down on you mid-sentence. This morning all was well since I noticed in time. It just delayed me. Still, I used the time to change my bed. Once back in again I started on the mail. I’m convinced I must be getting someone else’s as well by mistake. When I come across one by that devilish Sally Cronin talking about Chocolate muffins, I almost wish I was. On a ‘be nice to everyone’ day too. I swear that woman has a food fixation aimed at seeing me drown in my own saliva. You can’t tell her off though as she’s too nice.

I stopped work when I noticed it was 7.15 am. The fish would be waiting. Going through to the kitchen as fast as my legs would take me I saw the congregation massing round the front window. With spoken apologies ( in case they like the timbre of my voice) I opened the lid and put some flake in. Morecambe and Wise dashed to the surface to start eating. I put some little pellets in for everyone else and watched both Sharkey and Little Al dash for the nearest ones. I knew the grazers, the plecs would get to them eventually. Big Al just stayed where he was. I felt sorry for him in a way since he looked like the preacher where everyone had left during the service, or the General whose men have gone over to the enemy. I’d no sooner gathered those thoughts and was asking him how he was than he turned slowly , faced me and spoke. Since I don’t speak fish I have no idea what he said but I’m sure the bubbles came out blue. I told him it wasn’t my fault but he didn’t seem inclined to listen for as soon as I spoke he turned again and with a waft of his tail was gone. He didn’t go to eat but to sulk in his corner. I’ve no doubt he’ll eat when I’ve gone. You really don’t expect such language from a fish, I’m shocked.I suppose he could be talking about the deserters rather than me though?

I had my sprays and assorted tablets, made my coffee- forgetting my promise of breakfast, and returned to the desk. It doesn’t take long for the mail to accrue but in all honesty it wasn’t too bad. By 9.00 am I’d decided to take a break and venture to my chair in the lounge. I’d just got comfortable and was ready to drop off when there was a knock at the door. I came round unsure of quite where I was and also wondering why Ju wasn’t answering the door. She was very much on my mind after reading a very gentle piece by my friend Kim Gosselin about holding her mother’s hand as she passed away. Hmm, I think I have a leak, it’s raining on my face. I think the postman must have thought so too when I opened the door. “Caught you mid-wash did I?”he asked. There were two parcels, a small one for Mike and a larger one for me, that seems very fair. As I was closing the door I noticed some mail on the floor and found another smaller parcel for me too. Mine were yet another watch ordered for Christmas and two books for the same reason. Mike’s well that’s a MYOB until he opens it and shares.

Since I was awake again I went back to work and stayed there till lunchtime. I was a bit surprised at no answer from Mike after texting him about his parcel but no doubt he’s busy today. I enjoyed my lunch and after I’d washed the pots attempted to watch the rest of my programme on TV. I think someone drugged my Pepsi. It was 1.25 pm before I woke and came through and even then I think I was on auto pilot. I seemed to start a message from someone, nod off and come awake quickly to continue. Lucky it wasn’t emails or I may have written something odd. One young lady displayed a poem which she wrote as part of a threesome ( her description) and I could have had a lot of fun with that. I was tempted to ask where she kept her pen at the time but luckily a snooze took over and I was better behaved when I came to. Not that I’m into threesomes, it even used to embarrass me when the cat was watching. If staring was an Olympic sport he was a Gold Medalist.

By 4.00 pm I was clear again and went to watch a bit of the afternoon film. For a change, even though it’s Christmas it wasn’t a war film a cowboy or  a Cecil B de Mille biblical epic. Just a gentle enjoyable comedy. When it finished at 5.00 pm I had something to eat to have the second set of diabetic tabs. It was getting on for 6.00 pm when I finally had a message from Mike in response to mine of this morning. He’s looking forward to seeing his parcel when he gets here. Watch this space. Doh!! I wandered through to the bedroom and have been steadily keeping pace with incoming mail as much as possible. I fully intended to be through watching my Big Bang Theory at 8.00 pm as I didn’t want to miss another episode like I did last week. I doubted I’d stay in there after that unless there was something exceptional on though as Mike isn’t due until about midnight. I did watch my Big Bang and as usual it made me smile as I made my way back to work.  At 9.00 pm there was another text from Mike saying he was half way to me but the fog was bad so stopping for a wee and a coffee  and he’d be here about 10.30 pm. I just let him know I’d have the kettle on.

It was just coming up to 10.00 pm when I had a heart attack as Mike walked through the door. He was sniggering as he explained that as he approached Chester the fog disappeared and he made good time after that. A rough translation of that is I went somewhat faster than the law suggests. I hadn’t put the kettle on so I rushed and did it then and made him a coffee. His life hasn’t gone smoothly this week and again he has to fly over to see his Dad tomorrow and sort out the care package. It seems the carers are not doing what they’ve been contracted for. It’s not an easy thing to deal with from a distance. He invited me to go over to Manchester for lunch with the family on Sunday and his sisters are going to throw him another little party to remind him how old he is. At almost 11.00 pm I left him and came through to see to the blog and finish as much mail as I could. I must go out tomorrow for lottery tickets and cigarettes so not too late in bed I hope. A midnight deadline.

Friday.

4.51 am didn’t seem like an unusual time to get up and so I swung my legs out, donned my dressing gown and made my way to the loo turning on the computer as I passed by. By the time I cam back it seemed like having to get up at that time was a cruel and unusual punishment only I wasn’t sure what it was that I’d done wrong.  I’m no terrorist despite the fact I might put the fear of cat into the fish sometimes and I’m no thief despite the fact I might join the queue for more hugs despite having been hugged before. That’s only like trying to diddle the tax man though, a national pastime. Talking of hugs, one of my friends this week said that hugs of the virtual variety are definitely on the increase on the web thanks to my efforts. I’m thrilled at that and just think what an epitaph that could be.’He Hugged The World and The World Hugged Back.’ Who could ask for more. I know a lot of authors, bloggers and reviewers meet up so maybe the Hug aren’t always virtual. Anyhoo, I opened my mail box and was surprised Mike didn’t hear the strangled cry There were loads.

Only one stood out for me today that had been sent by a friend to inform me that Prince Ludwig von Pommern has titles for sale in Pomerania and Livonia . He sent me this as it was an area covered by us once or twice before on a website we had for frauds. There no longer exists a Pomerania nor a Livonia and nor is there a Prince Ludwig. The area was once part of Prussia but after Wilhelm II abdication became part of the Free State of Prussia until 1945 when it was gobbled up to be part of Germany and Poland. Please, find below a link to a Special and Limited Edition of 12 new Noble Titles with Ranks of Count, Marquis and Baron, featuring some of the most ancient geographical locations of Pomerania, Livonia and East Prussia.
This is a limited edition, and NO OTHER TITLES OF THIS KIND WILL BE OFFERED TILL THE END OF 2015. Just as well really as he usually has a Count of, a Marquis of, a Baron of the same place meaning the area is flooded with nobles. That doesn’t happen in real life as the titles would vary according to the size of the place and a Baron might hold a small place in the large lands of a Count to try and simplify matters. So Christmas is coming and the fakers need some pocket money again. The Prince in question is the husband of an American business woman whose previous husband also sold titles for another area though these days claim to award them to deserving people.

Other than that the post was fairly normal, just plentiful. At 7.00 pm I went through to feed the fish and found Big Al in his corner with his back to me and Little Al hovering round his tail like a supplicant. Morecambe and Wise wasted no time in finding their food and Sharkey attacked his unopposed. No words from me would make Big Al turn round let alone go for his breakfast. I gave up asking and went to take my meds. This was the last set in the box so I knew the box needed filling up before the evening. I didn’t feel like doing it just then so made my drink and took it through to the desk. It was to early to consider making one for Mike. The work seemed to be going down slowly but I still hadn’t complete up to 5.00 pm and didn’t dare refresh yet. By 8.00 am I was at that point where I did it. That was a mistake. I had to plough into it again in order to clear it. At 8.30 am Mike’s alarm went off unexpectedly. I thought he was setting it for 9.00 am. He didn’t move however so neither did I. When it went off again after 10 minutes I went and made a coffee thinking he must be ready to move but he was still in bed when I went through. Telling him there was a coffee there I returned to my emails. Another ten minutes went by before the alarm went off again and this time he got up.It was now ten to nine.

I finished the message I was writing and went through to see him. He thinks I’m pale ( but not interesting) at the moment and probably unwell. He’s offered to go to Pauline’s for me before he heads off to Manchester.That means I can be a slob and not get dressed again today. He was on his way to Manchester by 9.45 am. I’d asked him why he didn’t stay there the weekend and spend time with his sister over from Canada and he thought I was trying to get rid of him. It seems he still loves coming up here to relax and have fun at the weekend so he should be back sometime this evening. It’s a long way to go just to avoid doing my hair.

The Postman brought just one measly letter this morning which wasn’t worth getting out of my seat for. I was on my way back when there was  knock and a courier driver stood here with a package which could only be books. Great, that completes the gifts for MuJo. Having bought a replacement dressing gown last week I’m now informed the one they rescheduled for January will now be mid-December. They never responded to my request to cancel and choose an alternative which is why I bought one. So, I ( will) now have a spare. At lunch time I decided I’d better do my drugs and was halfway in when there was a knock at the door again-it’s like Picadilly Circus here today. This time it was one of  the wardens who came in and sat down. I excused myself for a minute to carry on with the tabs in my hand before I forgot where I was when maybe my state of undress startled her and she said she wouldn’t interrupt me if I was in the middle of a job. As long as things were OK she was happy. I never got chance to sit down with her and tell her how black my life is and how unhappy I am. That would have had her leaving faster than she did.Perhaps she thought the dressing gown was for her benefit rather than as a statement of ‘I really can’t be bothered’.

Having now wasted the quarter hour needed for my pre-food tab I decided to just have soup today though with some bread and butter. Mushroom soup as my choice today because looking at the pantry that was the ONLY choice. I ate as I watched Bargain Hunt and despaired of their choices and then watched them pick up profits on two of them. My defence is even the auctioneer had given them low valuations so he was surprised too. After that I washed the post, STAYED AWAKE and came back here. I struggled to stay awake and answer emails or make comments but I made it until 4.30 pm when I decided on a short break. I turned the TV on and fell asleep. It lasted just over an hour and I woke up wondering where all the antiques were. I watched the latter half of the quiz that was on and then started on Eggheads and had some tea at the same time.  The programme was just finishing as Mike came in. I put the kettle on for him then went to have a shower but Mike came through and did my hair first for me. That meant no hands over head and I was fine. After the shower w had an hour of old MASH episodes. I’d just got to my room to check on ebay when Mike shouted Mastermind was on. No way was I missing that so went back through.

At 8.30 pm I had to start work or I’d be up all night. I was really feeling rough. Sure I was going to be sick and none too sure about the other end either. I couldn’t give in to it however because there were 87 emails to deal with. They really kept me going. Once done I started on the blog before the messages had chance to pile up again. I needed an early night but wasn’t going to get my wish. In the end I had to admit defeat an packed in for bed at 11.05 pm.

Saturday.

I don’t know whether I was pricked by conscience (Mike would be quick to say Impossible) or whether there was some revenge because I jumped ship early last night but this morning it was 3.09 am. I was quite prepared to call the gods a name but realised they don’t have parents in the traditional sense anyway so it might not be an insult. I paid a quick slow visit to the loo, it’s all stops and starts these days, then came back , tried to make myself comfortable in the chair and turned the computer on. All the creases weren’t out of my bottom from last night so I tried stuffing a cushion underneath only to find my knees wouldn’t fit under the desk. I knew at that pointy I was just expected to suffer but I didn’t say anything about in silence.

Naturally most of N.America had been asked to write to me while I was asleep so my inbox was groaning at the seams. Untypically there was only one message I could see that could be tossed to the winds. A bank informing me that with regret they’ve had to suspend my account. I wouldn’t trust a bank that doesn’t know who it’s customers are so out it went. By the time 5.30 am came around I was flagging badly and needed a break. I went through to the lounge and promptly nodded off in my chair. It was almost 6.30 am before I came to. As I was closest to the kitchen at that point I fed the fish. All seemed well since the only ones I could see were Morecambe and Wise which probably meany Big Al had arranged a Union Meeting for bottom feeders. I privately cheered that I didn’t need to face him this morning and went about my business. That meant taking my morning meds and making my coffee. It was a quiet time to arrange to move things from one coat to another since it’s looking a bit grey out and I was intending to wear my duster coat if that was the case.

I boiled a kettle for 7.00 am and when I heard Mike’s alarm go off for the first time I mad his coffee and took it through. He ignored me like he had the clock but I persisted until I at least got a grunt. It was time to put the food rubbish and the recycling stuff out. Dressed in my Welsh flag lounge pants and a teeshirt I ran quickly up the path to place them at the end. I’d have looked like a rabid Nationalist of anyone had come around just then. Still, I might have been cheered for my patriotism. Back inside Mike’s alarm went off a second time. With a very deep sigh I got ready to go and remind him the drink was there. Before I could do so I gasped, he was up and moving around, after a fashion. The sound of shuffling feet and muttering followed him to the lounge. I sat down and tried to clear some more messages. Very soon though I needed to get dressed and then went through to see how Mike was getting on. “OK, OK, King of subtle, I’m going” he said leaving me confused at what he meant though I was glad to see him heading in the direction of his clothes, some of which I was holding in my hands.

While he dressed I attempted three or four new messages but he was ready quite quickly and stood in my doorway singing “Why are we waiting.” Just as well it wasn’t ‘Who ate all the pies’ as I was feeling pretty low about the size of my stomach which in turn was hanging pretty low now.  When I’d gone out with the rubbish it had been damp and dismal so the duster coat and a waxed hat seemed a good idea. With the coat flapping round my ankles I felt the bees’s knees. We were supposed to be going to Rhyl this morning so I was a bit surprised Mike turned the wrong way. He tells me he changed his mind and decided to go after the shopping but I’m pretty sure he just forgot. We didn’t do too badly and were at the supermarket for 8.15 am. As usual I hit the cash machine, these big sledgehammers really work. Mike worked his way through the trollies till he found a freebie. Then we were ready for battle. Inside the doors 8 cans of pop on a special offer, potatoes, flowers for Ju then a wander to look at the sale clothing for youngsters. I did say Mikes’ only 3’6″ didn’t I? Ouch, Ouch, 5’6″ then, we all make mistakes.

The gents section saw some jeans reduced from £15 to £4 for Mike and a cardigan I quite liked at £16 to £8 which a member of staff reduced to £4 as we stood there, no way was I turning that down. Pity it’s not my size really. Then we actually moved along and bought some food. Not much as who can afford food these days, but the bread was cheap so I might have bread sandwiches next week. By the time we’d done it was time for a coffee, the only good thing to come out of MacDonalds for me. Then it was time to head for Flint. A couple of items in Home Bargains (Loo Bloo only purple) then across to see Ceri and the crown with their sweets. Another coffee for me and the usual for Mike with a drink. A swift visit to the frozen food shop for pizzas and it was off home. I was the poor slob who had to put the frozen food away again. I had my final book from the postman waiting which we both glanced at as I was explaining how a good family record book can help with the tree. Then at midday it was time to head off again. I got outside and had to put dark glasses on. Dressed in my duster ( no hat) I looked a right lemon. Dressed for Winter in the middle of Summer

This time he turned in the right direction and we headed off towards Rhyl. There was some discussion about stopping ion the way to eat or perhaps to stop and find somewhere in Rhyl. My common sense version won the day “Stop or die” so for some reason Mike kindly pulled up at the Bells of St Mary’s where I’d been on Monday with MuJo. We both had an excellent roast dinner before carrying on the journey. When we arrived in Rhyl I directed Mike to go round the roundabout, past the end of the High Street and then to take the third road on the left. Turning right meant a soaking as we were on the seafront at the time. He took the third left just as I realise I might possible have miscounted. “Not this third left Mike, the next one” I cried but too late, he took it. Luckily for me it had a right hand turn which took us to the road we wanted which I said I’d known all the time. We managed to find a parking place quite close to the aquarium. I was still wearing the duster and Mike put his jacket on and we walked into a sauna.All the humidity from all the tanks and we were wrapped like mummies. The sweat was dripping off us. Mike was here to find out about some lamps he wanted for his tank at home. Is that what he asked about? No, way, we had to explore the contents of about 100 tanks first fish by fish. All the time boiling away before he finally asked about the lights which they didn’t even stock. I had to be dragged away screaming as I fancied a couple of beautiful synodontis and some more assassin snails.

Synodontis_Eupterus_3

Synodontis catfish

We were finally on our way homes again and I had no fish or snails. All I had was panic at being out so long ( over 8 hours) and not having finished the morning’s post before I left. We got in about 4.30 and after setting up the i*on and i*oning board for Mike I came through to work.216 messages which included the unfinished from this morning, Oh joy. Mike left me to it until after his football  than came to get me at 7.00 pm to watch a programme with him. We like quizzes. I did us something to eat while we watched so he doesn’t report me for neglect.I was allowed back at 8.30 pm but a little later he came through to tell me of a film he’s found to watch. I agreed to join him soon but it was 10.00 pm before I made it. It was a good film and kept me there till 11.15 pm when it ended.  Thereafter it was time to abandon the mail so I could do the blog post. I am after all at your service.

Sorry Mummy, didn't mean to trump!

Sorry Mummy, didn’t mean to trump!

I wish you all a wonderful new week and send you loads of Hugs. xxx

 

 

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46 Comments

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46 responses to “The Bells, The Bells. & I Wuff You.

  1. Dressing gown meets Big Al – a headline too grand to mess with it … 🙂 That is, except the Prince von Pommern, of course … 🙂

  2. Have a wonderful week David, enjoyed immensely.

  3. Great fun to read – though the Wednesday incident with Fiery Jack had me a tad concerned…… 🙂

    • Hi Pauline, thank you so much.. I’m glad Orlando let you come back and I’m delighted you enjoyed it. Please don’t ever be worried over my antics or little stupidities of life, they’re my own fault for not fully engaging my brain. 😀
      xxx Hugs Galore xxx

  4. Cooking with fresh chillies can have the same effect as Fiery Jack on certain body parts. Ouch. Have a great week. xx

  5. Have a super week and thank you for the entertaining read. I’m somewhat taken by Yvonne’s phone app and loved those photos. Sending you extra squidgy hugs this weekend. XXXX

    • Thanks so much Carol. Yes, she seems to get all the best apps. I gather it’s very easy to merge two photograph on this one and erase what you don’t want,leaving what you do- pure lies.
      I love the squidgy hugs thanks.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  6. Great to see you ploughing through all the Christmas shopping already. Have a great week.

    • Thank you Rosie. You can be sure I’ll still keep panic buying if I think I haven’t done enough. The stockings will cover the beds.
      I will have a great week and I’m hoping the same for you.
      xxx Ginormous Hugs xxx

  7. -giggles- We have an ointment called Tiger Balm and I can well imagine the effect it would have…in the wrong spot. 😀

  8. Oh, my godfathers, I just can’t stop laughing with the “talk to the hand, pussycat” photo. That is purely rich, David.
    And you are way ahead of me on the Christmas shopping. I think I may just have to send my list to you to be sure it all gets done.
    Have a warm and wonderful week! Big hugs, xxooxx
    PS. I totally agree. Your epitaph is a stellar one. 🙂

    • Hi Shelley, that picture just lent itself to the comment, I couldn’t help myself. It;’s only panic that got me where I am. You can certainly send me your list or I can send you a DIY course on being panicked.
      I hope you also have a wonderful week.
      Humongous Hugs go with you.
      Thanks. I think it will probably read ‘Old Git’.

  9. What a week! Are you close to being done with all the Christmas shopping? I agree with you about Kim’s posts this week. Very moving…Never tried Fiery Jack but discovered that even the tissues with balm on them can be trickier than one imagines…To be appropriately dressed in this country if you go out for a day one needs to carry a suitcase with all possible options included….Maybe it’s best to aim to be wrongly dressed all the time and say it’s intentional. Have a good week!

    • Yep, main shopping done and dusted Olga though I will perhaps see little things ideal for stockings. I like the old traditions.
      Kim’s post certainly moved me.
      Whatever you do, don’t buy Fiery Jack unless you’re prepared to spend 3 hours scrubbing your hands afterward or use rubber gloves to go to the loo..
      I think you’re right, I shall say it’s intentional, from now on and be part of the Nation of Eccentrics. They probably think so with my waistcoats anyway.
      Have a wonderful week,
      xxx Ginormous Hugs xxx

  10. What a lovely treat to read about your week, after a hard day of writing here David. I hope you don’t get any more bumps and bruises! You have to take care of you, because what would we do without you? Mega hugs right back to you. 🙂

    • Always there to perk me up Teagan. I hope the writing went well and you’re ahead on count for this last week.I’ll be glad when it’s over, we’re missing you everywhere. Without me Sweetie, you’d carry on just being the sweet person you are. Life goes on.
      xxx Humongous Hugs xxx

  11. Talk to the hand pussycat. 😆 What a riot. No sympathy for almost cocking your toes up. How sad. You poor dear. I thought I was appropriately sympathetic. But if not, please accept my sincere apologies. Especially for the ruined walls. Such a a shame. 😀 Here you go, have some extra big squishy hugs to make up. ❤ (((HUGS)))

    • Sometimes Reuben lkends himself to comments but this time Yvonne is responsible and she did the photograph on her new app ( I hope).
      Fair play, I didn’t need or deserve much sympathy. I’d rather have turned up my toes giving someone a laugh.
      The extra squishy hugs are most welcome. I hope you’ll be glad of mine too.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  12. The dialogue between you and Big Al is genious. Can I foresee a[nother] children’s book? As always you convey levity and and joy in your days, which surely is a good exmple to us all 🙂

    • Oh no. Not another book. Don’t you think you’ve suffered enough?
      I try to see the positive side to a situation so my days sound light enough to raise smiles. I’m not sure it’s a way would suit everyone though.
      Always lovely to see you here. Hugs to you and the G.O..
      xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  13. Awww…sheesh, gonna have to recover from your lovely, albeit super-sad ‘cut-in’ pic with the Eiffel and your precious wife…then I’ll come back and read the rest. I am so terribly, terribly sorry for your unrealized dream of going to Paris with her…the tears are making it hard to read on…my own precious parents were robbed of their dreams, similarly. It’s so unfair. I ask WHY???? WHY must the most wonderful and deserving people suffer such tragic and devastating circumstances? Why can’t the awful people get their due deprivation and the good be allowed to enjoy the reward for living honestly, working slavishly,committing to causes faithfully , and conducting themselves humbly and with simple joy and gratitude — why can’t they receive those simple, hopeful yet well-earned dreams as their due? It breaks my heart that I am not privy to the reasons for why things turn out so unfairly…
    I’ll be back… Big huge, tear-soaked hugs being sent to you, my dear, dear friend… xxxx CJ xxxx

    • You have to look at the positive CJ. Ju escaped for a rest.
      I’m so sorry the comment caused you some distress with the picture. We didn’t have a specific plan for Paris, it was just meant to convey that we missed doing things together. We may never have done them though. I know Prague would have been hard to top.

      As to why the good die young and the awful often remain….I can’t answer that. It should have been me instead of her but my time will come.
      Whenever you come back you’re sure of a welcome and I hope it won’t be tearstained, especially if I caused it.
      xxx Sending Humongous Hugs xxx

  14. “…to the rhyming and the chiming of the bells, bells, bells.”
    Even Poe would tell you to get more sleep, David, or at least don’t bang your forehead.
    The picture of you and Ju is so lovely, a real keeper. And wouldn’t she love Reuben and the “talk to the hand” picture?
    I don’t know why the good die young, but I’ve heard many theories and sentiments. I do know that we just don’t know how much time we have ourselves, or with the old and the young we love. Every day counts.

    • You’re spot on Marylin. Ju would have loved Reuben and maybe she cold have protected me from him.
      We have to live every day as though it’s our last so we get pleasure from it and give pleasure from it. I can but try.
      xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  15. I smile when I read your weekly posts. This one I smiled even larger, envisioning you and Big Al and your one-on-one intimidation tactics. So far, I believe Big Al is winning.
    I liked the fantasy Paris picture of you and Ju, but perhaps that’s because I believe in fantasy and romance, and in dreaming of a loved one, and meeting up with her/him in that dreaming realm.
    Sweet dreams to you, and a xohugehugxo.

    • If I made you smile Pamela then I’m working well. That’s all I need to do.
      You’re not the only one who thinks Big Al is winning, I do too. It’s embarrassing being faced down by a fish.
      It’s very rare that I dream and rarer still that it’s of Ju but I tend to see her in the corner of my eye during the day or wake up wondering why she isn’t there but she must be in another room. I’d like to believe that Paris will still be possible one day soon.
      xxx Sending Gigantic Hugs xxx

  16. You made me laugh when you waited for Big Al to turn his back before turning off the light. He’d be mad if he knew you did it each night? Better watch that one. “Talk to the hand, pussycat.” That’s the perfect caption and a photo that could easily go viral. Have a fab week, David. Hugs are floating your way. 🙂

    • Hi Mary J. I’m pretty sure Big Al doesn’t need any excuse to be angry though it might make him angrier.
      Maybe I should post that photograph on twitter on it’s own to give it a chance to go viral. That might be fun.
      I hope the rest of your week is perfect. The Hugs arrived and are appreciated so much.
      xxx Hugs Unlimited xxx

  17. Peter Skellern, now there’s a blast from the past! LOVE his music and adore the Grimethorpe Colliery Band, always brings a lump to my throat hearing them play. Sorry I’m so late catching up with your week, we’ve been back in Blighty for 5 days celebrating Irishman becoming a ‘doctor’. Humungous Hugs to you, hope your week is going well. Carlotta xxxxxxxxx 😀

    • I thought Peter Skellern might get more comments since I too love it and think the band play a great piece. It’s a great record. Sorry about the lump to the throat though.
      5 days back in Blighty and you didn’t come for a cuppa, shocking. Where did Pete get his Doctorate from and what in? I bet you weren’t far away though I also bet you had a lot of catching up to do.
      I send you Hugs Galore and hope they keep your week going well.
      xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  18. It’s hard caring for relatives who don’t live near. I do hope it works out ok for mike and his dad.

    • Thank you Kate. It’s just as well Mike loves driving ( or as I put it, low level flying). They’ve just agreed that from now on Mike will travel to me on a Thursday late afternoon, stay overnight to rest then visit his father for the full day on a Friday. I now feel like a halfway house.
      Hell be back here on a Friday evening ready for our shopping expedition on a Saturday morning. He’s still close enough to get back to his Dad’s over the weekend if needed.
      xxx Huge Hugs xxx. I’m hoping for much improvement in the ankle and your mobility.

  19. Hi David,
    I must really stop reading your posts on an empty stomach!!! I’ve had no breakfast just a few cups of coffee and am now regretted no breakfast after reading about your bargain carvery deals and talk of lovely lunches!
    And how could you not like cauliflower cheese! Its amazing and I could have it with every meal.
    Your descripition of your encounter with Fiery Jack has had the tears streaming down my face. My husband has always been very careful with cooking with chillies. It only took him once with feeling the warmth of a chilli in his eyes after preparing food and then rubbing. He wont do it again.
    The Works shop is a bargain for Xmas presents. I picked up 5 very big and chunky books for £15 this week. My new favourite place.
    Well you mentioned titles for people and I thought that you would be very good with a title. Lord David I think. Its got a great sound to it.
    I do have a question, its about Big Bang Theory. What do you think of Penny’s haircut? Its a debate in our house, I like it, my husband hates it, what do you think?
    Well not many sleeps to Xmas, as scary as it sounds. I’m just looking forward to my Xmas dinner.
    Have a good week,
    Take care,
    Kim

    • Sorry Kim, I complain when others talk of food too. I’ll give myself a smack.The carvery is great and I think during the week it’s only about £3.75 a go.but no more talk of food just in case.
      I’m glad my episode with the Fiery Jack made you laugh.It made me hop from foot to foot. Funny how it affects some people. I do feel sorry for your husband and the chillies. That’s a real ouch episode.
      I joined one of those money back sites online. They dealt with the works so I got the books, got free postage because that was the Work’s offer and then money back too. Brilliant.
      I wasn’t sure whether you’re joking about the titles since I thought you knew I’m actually Lord of Bouldnor, not that there’s a manor there and the only perk these days is granting a market.Still, looks nice on the passport…if only I went somewhere.
      I like Penny’s haircut but I didn’t like the outfit she wore when the three girls went to Vegas and she had to study. Far too revealing for me. I like a bit of mystery.
      Yes, not long to go now. I”m off out soon to post my cards for abroad for which I need a bank loan. Next week I must start wrapping which I hate.
      I hope you have a wonderful weekend and a great week.
      xxx Massive Hugs to all xxx

  20. As always, plenty going on…
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

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