Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Life on Wall St.

When The Nearly Two Year Old wakes up in the middle of the night The Diver takes him into the spare bed. (Hadriana is allowed her "beauty" sleep and is also on hand for The Princess's demands of a new hot water bottle and fresh CD to be put on in the middle of the night.)

The Diver said he woke up yesterday morning (around 6am) to find The Nearly Two Year Old sucking his thumb and staring at him. "Dad, Dad" he intoned until The Diver fully awoke. Then The Nearly Two Year Old launched into "Mum, Mum" (indicating that he wanted to be taken into the other bedroom). He then tugged at the zip of his sleeping bag wanting to escape from it. Said sleeping bag is unzipped. The Nearly Two Year Old is on the move.

The Diver says that he must put on some clothes. The Nearly Two Year Old then drags over The Diver's apparel: socks, underwear, shirt, jeans, specs, and then the coup de grace, he hands him his watch, which The Diver is hurriedly forced to put on. The Nearly Two Year Old crawls/walks out of bed and gets to the top of the stairs and points wordlessly. The Diver carries out his orders as instructed.

Once downstairs The Nearly Two Year Old pulls up a child's folding chair, sits down, starts sucking his thumb once more, points at the TV and says "Bob"! The Diver switches on the TV as directed. The Nearly Two Year Old then smiles beatifically at The Diver and settles down to watch.

The Nearly Two Year Old for President, I hear you say? Reckon he could sort out some teething financial problems in no time...

Saturday, 27 September 2008

Family Walk along the Wall (Gilsland to Willowford Farm)

This is a walk we did recently. It goes from Gilsland to Willowford Farm. I hadn't done this bit of the Wall before and it was a joy to do.

We have so much to do at the moment that it is good to get out and feel the tension melt away.

We have to get and sort out plans for an extension to our B&B, get it before the planners, get it built. We have to do up a house in a town close by and get it rented out p.d.q. (various things have not allowed us to do this for nine months). We have a website to build for the B&B, we have a website to re-do for the Red Sea Scuba Diving Business which we part-own and manage from here. We have to keep an eye on the gardens (both houses), not let either deteriorate too much in all this rain! We need to go on courses to keep our B&B skills uptodate and I'm almost finished with wrestling with the accounts for it. (Yippee!) (I'm also thinking of teaching Latin to children and beginner's level for adults. Maybe combining that with the history of Hadrian's Wall?) There are Dive Shows to go to, letters, meetings, housework, committee meetings for various things in the village and normal life to attend to. I'm not complaining, I'm sure everyone is just as busy, but these walks help take the strain away.

Oh the joys of muddy wellies and splashing in big puddles!

Ed, the dog, enjoys the walk too. Back in 1998 The Diver was bringing all the staff in from the Staff house in Hurghada, Red Sea, when one of them spotted a small red/brown puppy running after the pickup! And so..."ED" became part of the Easy Divers family....and ours. Lucky us.

Thursday, 25 September 2008

A Grand Day Out at The British Museum

Hadrian meets Hadriana: "It's up close and personal now pet!"
Hadrian surveys his new subjects outside The British Museum.

I think it is definitely worth going to the Hadrian Empire and Conflict Exhibition if you have the time, the inclination and the odd denarius (coin) or two!
The exhibition covers Hadrian's whole life, love(s), reign, and grand living quarters (his sumptuous villa/entire town at Tivoli). To his final resting place (Mauseoleum)/Castel San Angelo in Rome.
On the way home in the car. I read this letter from The Daily Telegraph (06/09/08):
Poor gallery layouts undermine visitors’ enjoyment SIR – Like Catherine Adams (Letters, September 3), I also went to Getty Images Gallery after seeing it on your website and was amazed by the clarity and atmosphere of these photographs, as well as the accessibility of the exhibits. I then went to the much-vaunted Hadrian exhibition at the British Museum and was very disappointed – not by the content, but by the display layout. Small exhibits were in cases at waist level. Labels were displayed at knee level with subdued overhead lighting, with the result that, as soon as a visitor leant over to look into the case, no one else could see a thing. He could not read it either, as his shadow was cast over the label. Fortunately, on returning home, I caught Dan Snow’s BBC programme Hadrian, which gave close-ups of the exhibits I had struggled to see, and I watched from the comfort of my armchair. Chris Green, Prestwood, Buckinghamshire
I have to say that the exhibition was jam packed and agree with a lot of the sentiments expressed here. That is a pity because there were a great many interesting exhibits - including some of the famous Vindolanda wooden tablets. I also did see Dan Snow's marvellous programme and I am hoping that I recorded it somewhere. If you can't get to the exhibition...try to see Dan's BBC programme on Hadrian. Well worth a visit!

Saturday, 13 September 2008

"I live(Freudian slip)...love your blog" awards

An award kindly given to me by Tartetartan and Dulwich Divorcee. (I would award this back to them...but I think they have it several times over....)
After much thought and a big roll of drums...Ta da! I award this wonderful award to the following bloggers:
1.FatFrumpyandFifty She is based on the Cumbrian side of Hadrian's Wall and I can assure you that she is not FFF! We met up for a coffee at the very attractive Tullie House (which I must explore further) in Carlisle. We had a good, long chat and even discovered we knew the same person in the next village. (There is more than one person in that village. Oh! you know what I mean!) FFF has a treasure trove of experiences to (hopefully) blog about so I look forward to hearing some of those tales in person and in blog.
2.LakelandJo A recent find and am enjoying hearing her experiences around and about this area and the Lake District.
3.Rural Villager I adore her blog and try to follow it as much as I can!
4.EastAnglianTroy Another recent find and I wish EAT well in his blogging adventures!
5. expatmum Another blogger from the North whom I have met...I enjoy her stories from the Other Side of the Pond and in person...
6.Reluctant Memsahib An "African" treasure. An absolute treasure. Do have a look!
7. BlogfromtheNorth Another chap who has lots to tell...well worth the visit. Just check out, for instance, what he has to say about the late great Humph (Humphrey) Lyttelton (didn't realise until the other night he was SO talented...jazz trumpeter, very funny man and artist). And...
8. The Lehners from France who will shortly not be in France but back in YUK.
9. The Other Side of Paris based in France (as opposed to Texas)....check out his "chateau"....(!)
who are extremely recent finds (and because I hate following rules..... :-))
"Rules" of this award are to: link to the blogs awarded and nominate seven! You know who you are! (Also let them know as well. It's only polite to do so after all your hard work.)
There are lots of other blogs which I would nominate as well but I'll save those for another time...(large hadrons collision - allowing...)

Thursday, 11 September 2008

A big thank you to Tartetartan

A couple of days ago I was awarded this wonderful award by Tartetartan and I have to admit that I am still thinking of which 7 other blogs to nominate....(a condition of accepting this rather nice award). I'm really rather rubbish at all of this so whilst I think on I would like to make this award to:
1. Test Match Special Team because it is very English and Henry Blofeld "Blowers" is so, so, very PG Wodehouse. So here you are "you dear old thing".
2. Northumberland/Cumbria because every time I look at their lushious, verdant sceneries they are show stoppingly brilliant (even in the rain).
3. The blogging world in general because I love to rake through other people's lives, experiences, off white washing and so very nearly clean jokes.
4. The English Language because I am absolutely 100% fascinated by it.
5. Britain because it ain't the full penny without the other bits.
6. The British Sense of Humour because I wouldn't be able to get through the day without it.
7. The creator of "Wallace and Gromit", Nick Park, because that man is a genius. "Cracking good, Gromit!"
8. The British "clubs" of this world...without whom I would never have met...(ahem)...the other half.
9. The "Spanish Inquisition" scene in Monty Python......"Surprise and fear...fear and surprise.... Our two weapons are fear and surprise...and ruthless efficiency.... Our three weapons are fear, and surprise, and ruthless efficiency...and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope.... Our four...no... " (Did I say 7 points? I meant...err 8 points, or was it 9 points...no...darn it! I didn't expect a kind of Spanish Inquisition! (Ed: didn't realise that the scene was set in Jarrow. It was where Hadriana was born. Eh! Lass..."Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition! Our chief weapon is surprise!.......")