Friday 17 November 2023


Everton Football Club has been 'fined' 10 points by the (English) Football Association for financial overspending. This puts Everton into the relegation zone.  They are by no means the only club facing such sanctions.

Do I care? Of course I don't, even though as a schoolboy I was an Everton supporter.

However, I do despair that with the atrocities in Israel and Gaza and the war in Ukraine both (and everything else of importance) have been knocked off the evening news top spot in favour of the punishment of a football club.

Thursday 9 November 2023

The Old Shop, Bayble

Yesterday afternoon I did a shift in The Old Shop, Bayble. I had rather assumed that I had blogged about it before but, if I have, it's not coming up in any searches. The Old Shop, Bayble is a not-for-profit community association, staffed entirely by volunteers. Any profits go to support local community projects.

The aim is to contribute to community life by keeping a much-loved historic building in community use, helping to reduce waste and show-casing locally produced crafts and many other interesting and unusual items.

A mixture of new speciality goods, eco products, crafts and "nice things to buy" as well as quality used clothes and other items you might find in a charity shop/op shop/goodwill store are available to buy.

You can also enjoy a cup of freshly ground coffee and 'home made' cakes and treats. A range of fine teas and ever-popular ices and vegan sweets are also available. 

A small sample of some of the beautiful woodturning and wood products of one of the volunteers

Wednesday 25 October 2023


In a recent post Rachel made the point that, for her, 'One Task a Day is Enough'. Obviously when Rachel talks about 'one task' she is talking about something that is consuming of time and energy both physical and mental. 

Unlike many people I know and admire I have never been single-minded in anything.  Eleven years ago (I really can't believe that it's that far in the past) I wrote a post about ARADD (Age Related Attention Deficit Disorder) with a very amusing video. It was entitled 'Just a Thought'. Only one of my regular commenters today commented then so it may be worth a wee look although many of you will, I'm sure, have seen the video.

My latest visitor, Anna, has returned home after ten days here when we spent most of our time socialising, walking (when Storm Babet let us) and generally having an enjoyable and relaxing time and we got some gardening done too. Unlike many of my readers once I'm engrossed in looking after guests, I can't usually find time to blog and may only read blogs without commenting. 

So this morning was a day for catching up with laundry, ironing and housework and so on with a wee excursion at coffee time into Blogland. 

This afternoon I'm doing my stint in the Old Shop, Bayble. I've never blogged about it so I'll do that shortly. It's very quiet and very cold!

I've spent a lot of this evening on the telephone.

I was going to say that I have no idea how some of you fill your days with so much and still blog. But many of you are organised of mind and body and it is obvious from the fact that you can build a house or do a day's work at the office, feed the family etc etc and still keep us all up to date that you can concentrate properly on things as you go and thus achieve many things in a day.

I struggle to think and chew gum simultaneously. No. I'm not being self-deprecating nor modest. I am just someone who knows my abilities and limitations and lives with them. I have other strengths but concentrating on one thing at a time is not one of them. 

As a result this simple post has been written over a period of 14 hours. 

Anyway be happy and, above all, wake up tomorrow.

Tuesday 10 October 2023


I'm not really a 'pet person'. I kept mice and later white rats when I was a child and admired them for their characters and intelligence. They lived in very large cages and had pretty good lives with lots to do considering that they were in captivity. The rats were incredibly smart and worked out how to open the hasp and staple door lock by removing the peg. 

I inherited a cat at one stage. I can't remember his name but he was generally known as BP (short for Big Puss because of his considerable size). He died of kidney failure just a few days before my first trip to New Zealand. He probably knew something was up. He was at least 16. Until then he's never been to the vet apart from innoculations etc in early life.  When he came into my house for the first time and tried to come into my bedroom I said 'No' firmly and put him outside the bedroom door. For the rest of the many years he lived here he would lie down at the bedroom door but he never crossed the threshold.

Big Puss aka BP

However the piece de resistance of an animal outsmarting me was a border collie named Bobby whom I looked after for a friend  while he was away. I'd been given instructions on his walk routines and routes (he lived nearby) and at the allotted times he would sit at the front door and wait to go for his walk. He would walk to the intersections to see which way we were going on any particular day and the second he got an indication he was off. It was all very organised and routine for the first two walks on Day 1.

However, at 5pm on the dot he was again by the door and indicating that it was walk time. So I assumed I'd not understood my instructions and this walk was repeated when he went to the door at 5pm each day.   I never did understand how he knew the time down to the minute for each walk. I don't have any such routines so it was all a bit alien to me.

On the day when his owner was due home we were on the 5pm walk when his master returned in his car. He said it was very good of me to add in an extra walk but he hoped Bobby wasn't going to expect this in future because he wouldn't be home from work to give him it.

I could almost see Bobby grinning from ear to ear at having completely outwitted me.

I've never trusted an animal since!