Catch Up On November

Dear reader

I have had such a busy month that there isn't time to blog on Mr Him.  Never mind, lets leave him behind as I tell you what I have been up to.

Sadly first of all my father died.  This was expected for several years and so is taking its time to sink in.  I still cannot believe it.  Colleagues are surprised that I am at work but as I told them that by speaking for 5 minutes here and there to several people in the office it lets the grief out in dribbles. If I was at home I would distract myself and not talk about it.  At least at work people ask me and so I talk.  There are hugs too.

Christmas will be hard. In some ways I want to create new routines but the girls don't as our routine is Xmas to them.  Its what they expect.

Well, other than that I have been on the London eye with 3 other lifestyle bloggers and felt left out due to not having the right boots.. see here and there are pics of the Thames and London from above so do have a read.

Dear reader,  I'm sorry that you are having to borrow posts from my other blog but my father's death has taken its toll on my ability to write in the way that you are used to, for the time being.  I would like to say a special thank you to Mary the Pouting Pensioner who offered me a room whilst my mother was ill and to Stephanie of Hastings Battleaxe who has helped me to find a suitable location  for the wake and recommended a florist.  

It is moving that as a blogging community that we become true friends when in need.

Two Have a Breakdown

Dear reader 

On Saturday Mr Him and I set off to meet with Mary and her husband. The day was of 2 halves.  Our blogs were to be of 2 adventures followed by a joining up at lunchtime. Mary was going to go to visit Rudyard Kipling's house and I was to have a breakdown and then we'd meet for a nice lunch and Vino and be driven by husbands.  

Our part went to plan.  Just 15 minutes from our destination (Batemans)  our car broke down in the middle of Storm Brian thereby causing Mr Him to become a hero. This is something that I like to let him do now and then and gives him a story to tell over lunch, and that, of course, was my plan. 

Mr Him called out the AA. I called Mary. We had a bet on who would be most useful.  Having summoned Mary for a lift to the  pub for lunch from the car park in which  we were stranded I declared my call to Mary was the most useful.  

However, thirty minutes later the AA turned up and ' fiddled' with our car. We were off again.  I called Mary to abandon pick up and meet us at the pub. As the  AA escorted us to the pub to make sure the car was now working   Mr Him declared himself the winner.  His call was most useful.

The pub that I found by chance was a little gem from the 13th century.  It was rather like entering  Brigadoon in that it didn't appear on Mary's Sat Nav nor TripAdvisor.  As anyone trying to find Brigadoon would do Mary obtained directions from a hairdressers shop. (I had obtained directions from a bakerery shop.) 

I ate a hearty beef and ale pie. 

I drank a hearty wine  (glass)

Mr Him had a hearty fish and chips

I drank another hearty wine (glass) and then being heartily 'stuffed' we shared desserts in our couples.  Mr Him and I had a rum bread and butter pudding with icecream. 

As usual we had a darn good chinwag and not much talk on blogging.  We talked of life in general. I always very much enjoy my meetups with Mary, my older twin by blah years, and her husband.  

Im looking for the return of Storm Brian.  

Pop over to see Mary's day here  and visit my video of my breakdown here on YouTube. 

Historical, not, Sites

Dear reader, last week not only saw me entertaining by bar stool leapage but I also showed my Kenyan colleague what he kept calling historical sites, not hysterical sites please note.  All well and good and very  kind of me, wasn't it to show him these 'historical' sites! Well, yes except these sites were Martian burrowing cylinders, time machine clocks and Martians. 

I kept explaining that they weren't in fact histortorical but I think something was lost in translation!  I suspect he will have some interesting stories to tell of England, the Martians and time travel. Just thank goodness he wasn't visiting during our draft apocalypse!

I have written before here (ckick on link on here) of the role of the town that  I work in had in The War of the World's but many of you weren't readers then so do click on the link to see more.

To whet your appetite here are some pics I took last week of 'historical sites'. There are no bar stool leaping hysterical sites.

A martian looms over the town

this sneaked in and is historical in the context of Status Quo

Time machine clock in a pub.  The outer circle is books

Draft Apocolypse

Dear reader

We practised the apocalypse this week.  No doubt you have heard of Britain's trial run  with the Yellow sky of Doom.

I don't know about you but when my kids were young, and I too, we drew the sun yellow.  Children in Africa often draw it red. I didn't understand why until 6 years ago when we were in Tenerife and we experienced Saharan sand in a wind storm.  The sky turned an eerie yellow and the sun appeared bright red. This had been a one off experience for us.  Until this week.

That very same eery yellow sky and red sun befell us in England.  It was like a partial eclipse.  Birds flocked to roost and office workers abandoned tasks to take pictures.  It was unexpected. People admired the 3 pm sunset at the same time as being hastag 'scared $%%^less' as one of my friends put on facebook.  We hadn't got a memo saying the apocalypse is nigh, nor that the trail run of Armageddon was happening that day.  The weather forecasters hadn't warned of yellow sky from the west or a front of red sun causing human disturbance.

The phenomenon was widespread.  My family working in other counties, my  friends in other parts of Britain were seeing the same phenomenon.  It lasted a good 4 hours.

So how did I experience the event?  It was a warm day. 

12.30 - 1.30  I had gone out of the office at lunchtime. The wind was strong and warm, the sort of warm wind you get closer to the equator but not in England.  The sky was normal. 

1.30-2.30 I returned to the office and got down to spreadsheet endeavours.  

2.30  a colleague started mumbling of yellow things.  I handed him sticky notes but he pointed at the window.  The sky had a yellow tinge in the distance.  

2.35 By the 5 minutes the yellow cloud moved closer to us.  As it got nearer  it also got darker.  Birds started flocking to roost.  

2.45 Colleagues stopped work and looked, and talked.  

2.50 Amy worried about her washing she had left out on the line. 
2.55 Nancy rang her husband, who was in London in an office and who said his colleagues were all at the window taking photos.  This clearly was not just Woking.  This was widespread. 

3,00  I rang Mr Him.  He said the sky where he worked was yellow and tasted funny.   I looked at the BBC website.  This sky was all over Britain!  

5.00 By the time I left the office at 5 the sun was red.  Bright red.  

Here are some links for you to see how we did with the draft Apocolypse.

Almost Canarian Potatoes in Farringdon

Dear reader, on Thursday I had the pleasure of eating almost Canarian potatoes in England.  Almost as they weren't cooked in salt or their skin.  What was the similarity then?  The sauce.  This orange Spanish Mojo sauce.  (You know how much I love my Canarian potatoes, and it's the sauce that does it for me not the volcanic soil or salt.)

As well as almost Canarian potatoes I also almost had a slippage on a stool due to height and lightweightedness of stool combined with tightness of my skirt in a ratio that caused hilarity.  The result, I couldn't get up on said piece of furniture. This was much to the amusement of my colleague from Kenya who I was entertaining at work that week. I can tell you I was onto a winning formula with my various small leaps onto the stool so if you need to entertain colleagues from overseas  do remember the stool trick. It's good for a good half an hour. 

The Canarian potatoes and stool escapade occurred in a Spanish Tapas bar in Farringdon London called Iberica. Myself and my Kenyan colleague were meeting two business contacts from South Africa.  It was the South Africans who had found and booked this gem of a restaurant or Tapas bar. 

The location was excellent for me as I was able to get a direct train home from the doorstep.  I suppose the reverse can be true and I can get a direct train there too from my doorstep . Now there's a thought! Canarian potatoes just an hour's train journey away.
The wine was absolutely superb.  As velvet as you would expect in a high quality Tapas wine bar. We finished with a digestive which was a lot like a sherry.  (Might have been a sherry.) 

We ate small boards of cured meats, hams and some cheeses, and almost Canarian potatoes. 

There were no dogs allowed, for those wondering.

The loos, restroom, ladies/gents was a place to make friends  (in the nicest possible way) as cubicles for each were in the same room but not either side of the room.  Instead interspersed or alternate, and no one knew where to go. Conversations were had with the opposite sex from other tables in this room as one played 'where's the gents?' And  'umm, am in the wrong room. ' One man called out for his wife, I think he was in fear that I was chatting him up over the paper towels.

There are no pictures of the restroom but here is a picture of a shabby chic lamp, looking upwards into the shade, with its ripped and burnt material and melted candle light holder effect.

Catching Up Whilst we Wait for Numptiness

Dear Reader

I have been chastised for not updating this blog recently.  I apologise but in defence I  have been adding to my 'other' blog, the boring one.  My lack of contribution here, dear reader, is due to lack of numptiness of Mr Him, and my family.   In some ways its restful, as you can imagine. 

Whilst we wait for numptiness to return you may wish to distract yourself with these boring offerings  here, just scroll through the outfits to get to the scenery bits, the last being most interesting (dreams.)

I also filled some time last Sunday copying a local Tesco advert, here 

Plus I did cook a meal and here is the videographic evidence.   Most likely I did this by the delegated method. 

Cooking with Hello Fresh

I am  currently attempting No Spend October and Coach to 5k and have written about both here .  You will see that I have had my first tantrum!

Finally, let's consider what numpty means here.  I hadn't reaslised quite how apt!

A Luncheon in London

Dear reader,  

I have a pictorial treat for you today.  On Thursday I was lucky enough to be invited to a 'lunch' at Plaisterers Hall in London.  Plaisterers Hall is one of the livery or guild halls.  I have written of another Livery hall that I have visited here. (I have to say though that my favourite to date is Butchers Hall but I wasn't blogging at the time so didn't take pics).

And about Plaisterers Hall here .  

As I arrived on Thursday I saw remains of the old London Wall, but as you can tell from the video Here , I have difficulty saying where exactly are the Roman remains, and that was before drinking wine.  Later there would be no hope.

I ate in unusual elegance, which reminds me that I must speak to Mr Him.  

To set the scene let me take you on my journey. 

Below is St Mary Le Bow which is mentioned in 'Oranges and Lemons' the nursery rhyme  more on this here

I had a quick pick me up looking almost opposite the above bell tower, in Nespresso. 

Plaisterers Hall has an almost Wedgewoodesque ceiling

 I obviously couldn't take photos of the guests and meal but here is my napkin after I had indulged in game terreine, stuffed chicken breast, chocolate eclairs and various cakes, coffee and a chocolate truffle.

I also sneaked a video of inside for you.  here

Woodstock or Zen

Dear reader

A few weeks ago Miss 22 decided that she'd like to build a 'Zen Garden '.  She bought little white stones and a small bamboo fence. She weeded and planned.   I had thoughts  peaceful activities such as meditation and a bit of upside dog going on. Well upside down dog may have gone on but I doubt it was anything to do with yoga!

You see I awoke on Sunday to find Woodstock had happened in my garden.  

It all started when Miss 22  and Miss 18 gathered some friends and  variously they headed to the woods for sticks to burn and the supermarket for ribs and donuts.  I suspected when I saw the remnants the next morning that that wasn't all that was bought. 

Mr Him and I headed to bed unawares of the carnage  going on at the end of our garden.
The next morning I drew curtains to find the refuse of  Woodstock incarnate.
I'll let you enjoy in the video.

I soon set them to clearing up. It got this far.

Happily, later in the day the remnants of Baby Woodstock had been cleared up and we had Zen once again.

The House that Would Not Blow Down

Dear reader, you may be wondering what Mr Him has been up to recently. Have things been quiet on the Mr Him front or so diabolically bad I can't even write about it?  Up to recently the former.  However I've now concluded that he's the sort of neighbour you want living 3 hours drive away.  Maybe you had already guessed that from previous posts. I was in denial I think. 

My discovery materialised this week. I know, I know, how could I have not known for that long!

Let's start at the beginning.  Once upon a planning permission long months ago a house was built next to us. Right next to us. So next to us we could see through the lounge onto the patio from our bedroom window. It was made of brick. However much Mr Him huffed it would not blow down.

I had blinds put up in our dining room. Mr Him huffed and puffed more when I instructed him that the dining room needed painting to be in keeping with the blinds.  Even this furious puffing did not blow the house down. 

I bought 15 foot high bamboo as a screen to our patio and dining room.  Mr Him huffed as he planted it in pots. The house did not blow down.

I ordered a mature 15ft high budleja.  It arrived and was 12 inches. Mr 26 and friend huffed and puffed as they maneuvered 12 inch high budleija.  The house did not blow down.

I ordered a 10ft high palm tree.  Mr Him puffed in great gusts  as he planted this with Mr 26 help. The house did not blow down.

I ordered a 10ft high photenia.  Mr Him huffed and puffed and refused to plant it. The house did not blow down.

Two weeks ago a couple moved in to the house.  Mr Him invited them over for pizza takeaway.   We planned and prepped like we had never done before.  (We bought food rather than make it.)  I was the hostess of the mostess this time. In preparedness I even tried out a new lipstain that had me looking like a cross between  Morticia and Betty Boop. Luckily I managed to remove it before they thought they were walking into Addams Family Mansion.  I stopped Mr Him putting the Time Warp on as welcoming background music. 

We had a good night.  They are a great couple.  They loved our dogs and said  'you must bring them over sometime. ' Now you and I know that when people say that they don't mean it.

Not two days had passed before Mr Him was knocking on their door with said dogs to visit newly built, newly carpeted, newly decorated house that would not blow down.  He tells me they gushed and aaarhd.  He tells me they were pleased, especially when Luna marched in through the house heading to kitchen to see a mother in law. 

I say Mr Him's the sort of neighbour they'd want living in another darn town.  They must be in fear of us not leaving them in peace.

Mr Him has a new hobby now.  A blog reader said they imagine a Bridget Jones voice from me. Mr Him says 'more like her mum.' Still when I said that I even have my own Mr D'Arcy Mr Him started plans on building a lake in the garden, so he could emerge from it occasionally. I said 'don't bother, Mr 26 and I can plunge you in the bath now and then if you like.'

Back Home and the Meta-human

I'm home now and its back to wearing a rain mac and tights.  Here in the UK people are talking of summer just starting.  Really?!! It's because schools have only just broken up so August is thought to be 'summer'.  We actually had a heatwave in June though this year. That was 'summer'.

Whilst we were away our ginger cat missed Mr Him so Miss 22 made, (her words) Mr 26 pay him some attention. 

A 'giant' Budleja arrived, for which I'd ordered a trolley to move it. Turns out it was a foot high!  It took 2 men and a trolley to maneuver my 'giant' Budleija.

Miss 22 built what she called Temple Palace with her washed bedding.  
Then abandoned it, apparently.

Miss 22 also built what appears to have built   a runway in the garden to help us home.

I have now returned to work and dealt with a wagon load of emails. Delete delete delete. I've also ate a wagon load of cake.  One email even said, ' welcome back, I hope you enjoyed the chocolate cake. Can you fill in this spreadsheet please. '  That was from someone on another floor! And I didn't even know the sender! My cake eating reputation had gone viral, and I'd only been back a day.

Despite not getting sunburn on holiday I seem to have managed it at home.  This was most surprising considering I was in bed at night sleeping at the time. Now some may say the sun shines out of Mr Him's whatsiname but I'd prefer it didn't.  The result of Mr Him's radiance was that I had a very sore and inflamed red face. It didn't occur to me that I needed factor SPF extra strong in bed sleeping with him. Has he turned into a meta-human.  He says not.  He says it's the new glycolic acid exfoliating serum that I had put on that night. Hmmmm.  Nice try.

Gran Canaria - The Wrap Up

Last year I did a post on what we'd miss. Funny how things change depending on where you are.  This year I will miss the 2 weeks I've had with Miss 18. She's been great company.  Gems that had us laughing were;

Me. 'Norwegian airlines put famous people on their tails '
Miss 18 'can't they get a private jet or something '.

Mr Him 'You've got a good tan miss 18'
Miss 18 'yes I know, right, I'm jealous of my own back. '

Mr Him hasn't really had any moments of ridiculous this time. Thank goodness. 
There is nothing we did regularly enough to say I'll miss that but let's give it a go.

The clear sea...the water is so so clean, the sea bed gently slopping. I'll miss swimming in that sea water.

Sea water skin...I'll miss how the salt and humidity make my skin 20 years younger.

The sea ferry to the other local ports. A really good value ferry called Salmon.

The view of blossom against sea and sky

Mr Him's outfits...not

The mirrored lift in the first hotel which gave us lots of hideous sights

Looking forward to

Seeing Miss 22 and the animals.

This year both apartments had washing machines so I can't have that on the list
Rain....yes I'm looking forward to rain on my skin, cloudy grey skies, and wearing my jeans.

Eating healthily.  This year we ate out more. It shows. 

Miss 18 is looking forward to sinking into her own soft bed.

Decent wine.  I haven't had a decent wine and only one nice Sangria.  I did buy a cheap bottle of Cava for the apartment.

Most Sangria has been on tap and lemonade based. We were spoilt in Tenerife last few years.

Shade.  Our last hotel was a suntrap with very little shade. It would be so easy for them to have more umbrellas. There were none by the bar area.

Leaving behind any thoughts of engaging with my inner goat

Not needing to reserve a sunbed in my garden.

My own kitchen.

My lounge and TV

My normal routine.  Does that sound wrong?  We spend so long in our routine and yearn for holidays then......

Anyway here is the holiday video. our Gran Canaria Holiday

Catch Up On November

Dear reader I have had such a busy month that there isn't time to blog on Mr Him.  Never mind, lets leave him behind as I tell you wha...