Sunday, 30 October 2011

Clock This!

It's an appropriate title in more ways than one on this day when the  clocks get turned back by an hour.

Instead of half six this morning, I was up and about when the clock faces were telling me it was five thirty. 

Now here's a less than perfect snap, taken  at 5.30 this afternoon, and what happened to the twelve hours in between?! Not a lot, as a good portion of it was taken up by my sneezing and blowing my nose, accompanied by sporadic swallowing of mugs of hot, fruit tea to ease the tickle of my tonsils.

This week's creative writing class came with a free gift of a cold, I think, as the tutor complained of feeling one degree under as we clustered round the tables, wielding our latest magnu(s)m* opus. Or opusses, or opi...What is the Latin plural? Tell me somebody, do.  * thanks RWP.

Anyhow, several of the time pieces scattered about the house are clever enough to  adjust themselves. But not this one. It came as a free gift with some catalogue purchase, years ago. It sits atop a wooden, six drawer storage unit, full of Useful Things, which live beside my computer. It objected to my disturbing it, as usual; I have got used to its complaints. 

After adjusting the hands, I popped its plastic dome back on, but could tell it wasn't happy, as the second hand went on a go slow, before shuddering to a grinding halt. 

"New battery needed!", says I, hopefully but unconvinced. Then I noticed the short hand had no control at all - it fell from the fifteen to the twenty five mark in a flurry of movement. So what did Jinksy do? Why, unpicked as much of it as possible, and reassembled it in reverse order. End result? Success! Its happy quartz tick is tocking merrily, and its 'arms' have now found enough strength to keep its hands under control!

I think this will have to link to Susannah's 'I Saw Sunday', don't you?

Friday, 28 October 2011


Today, I wanted to drop a coat into the cleaners, but was told they were not taking any more incoming goods, in readiness for the whole business to be shipped right across to the other side of Havant, close to the enormous, revamped Tesco supermarket.

Havant itself is a dying town. Every time I wander around, there seems to be another shop that’s closed, its windows plastered with glossy photographs of what a shop could look like, if there was one still there!   It makes the place appear attractive by disguising the empty premises, but it makes shopping  a bit of a nightmare.

Everything is being geared to the needs of car owners. Little old ladies like me have to like it or lump it – or perhaps that should read ‘learn to yomp it’, for I can see hiking boots becoming compulsory footwear for shopping…Unless you want to go to Tesco's, when you can take one of these...

...which happens to fit with today's Sepia Saturday subject!

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Productive Procrastination?

I guess by now, nobody is ever surprised at what peculiar subjects I choose to blog about from time to time. Here's one such. Having begun tipping out the cupboard under my stairs on Friday with a view to a massive recyle-or-bin-it project this weekend, I'm now going to confess. A large portion of my Saturday was involved in - ready for this? Shortening a scarf. There... if you were in doubt as to my sanity, this is probably a clincher in the thumbs down department.
This crochet creation I manufactured a year or two back had  s t r e t c h e d to an unprecedented length - enough to be a danger to life and limb if it unwound itself  to hang down on either side of my neck, instead of remaining neatly wrapped around it.

So, despite having a hall floor dotted with heaps of 'stuff', I decided action was needed. I laboriously unknotted the  hand tied fringe, carefully sliced about eight inches worth of stitchery from the remaining length and re-attached the now wonky looking tassels. Anything, in fact, to avoid dealing with the 'stuff'.

Today, I have not only avoided it again by constructing this blogpost, but for good measure, have also opted out of ironing, cooking and cutting my hair... Wonder what else I will manage to ignore before bedtime? Procrastination is an art I believe I have perfected...

I've decided to belatedly link this to Susannah's I saw Sunday, for it will certainly make all the other contributors think themselves so industrious, by comparison! Well done, Blog Pals!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Well, Well, Well!

Some of you may remember my earlier post about a free newspaper that lost the fight with my letterbox a couple of weeks back? The saga continued last Thursday, for I caught the paperboy in the act of cramming the next edition through.

I quickly opened the door, and called to him "Cooee! Can I have a word please?" as I beckoned him back to my pathway. Calmly, and pleasantly, in the circumstances, I gave a swift demonstration of how his life would be easier if he followed my simple method of folding the paper widthwise to make a short, stiff bundle , easy to push through the toughest letterbox flap.

He was a fairly good looking youngster - but spoilt by the scowl on his face, and his grumpy "So what?"attitude. "It's only a free paper, what does it matter?"
"True, but you are getting paid to deliver it, and the people who advertise in it are paying for those ads. Besides, you'll find it far more satisfying if you always try to do your best, no matter how ordinary you think the task is that you're given." He went off muttering.
But this evening, this picture shows he may have been listening despite himself. Of course, I shall have to look out next Thursday, to see if it is the same lad - I hope it will be...Then I can thank him.

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Old And Battle Scarred?

I'm talking about the photo, although probably I would now fit into that category, if I'm honest. However, this is another of my Bro's 'Candid Camera' shots which has survived the rigours of its trip to New Zealand, and its immersion in his flooded basement at some point. It's badly discoloured and spotted, but I've gently touched up the faces, so that my daughter and I don't look as though we have some kind of white measles.

I was searching for a suitable picture for Sepia Saturday this morning, and happened upon this relic before looking at the subject they'd chosen. Imagine my surprise when I discovered I'd actually chosen a compatible theme - sort of. 'Wars, cooking, chairs or fires', were the subjects on offer.

Fires I can discount totally - the one in Mum and Dad's sitting room would be behind you, as you look at the screen! But how's this for the rest?
  • I was born in the war.
  • There's a high chair  and a piano stool in view.
  • What looks like remains of a Christmas Pudding sit on a dish in the foreground, in the shambolic aftermath of some large family gathering.
The cards and presents on the top of the piano suggest the Festive Season.The year has to have been 1968, when daughter was just one year old (bless!) and still tiny enough to wear a matinée jacket she'd had since birth!

On the tray of the highchair, that striped, fluffy thing was Wol, without whom we never went anywhere. He was made from strips of sheepskin glued onto a roll of corrugated cardboard, and had a dear little owl face with two large beady glass eyes and a cheeky expression, if only you could have seen it in this photo.

You will understand the colours are totally false when I tell you, at that age, daughter's hair was the brightest of bright copper - like a new penny- while mine was never more than mouse...

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Tall Story Time

She peered out towards the clothesline, where the washing hung limp and soggy above the lawn. "Blast! Those clothes will take ages to dry - not a breath of wind, and the sun’s got no real warmth, this time of year.”

There were multi-coloured post-it notes stuck round the frame, and they fluttered in the draft coming through her kitchen window with  more enthusiasm than the clothes on the line. But as she stood muttering to herself,  shimmering golden shapes suddenly bloomed in the middle of the garden. 
“Good lord! Is that several skinny men playing ring-a-roses, or one fellow rushing round so fast he blurs and looks like a group?" She rubbed her eyes, and squinted to see better. Yes – at least three! “Whheeew! Angels or Aliens?” The words squeaked out in a breathy whisper from a voice she didn’t recognise as her own. The hairs on her arms and neck felt as though they were on the move, and the word ‘horripilation’ that had been in last week’s crossword, flashed into her mind. “Even my bloody goose bumps are so scared, they’re huddling, and my heart rate must be off the scale.” 

Despite this initial panic, the longer she watched the light beings, the calmer she felt, for there was no sense of threat about them. In fact, she began to see beauty in their twisting and turning, and almost before she realised, she was stepping out of the back door and moving on hesitant feet towards them. Telling herself “Come on girl you can do this!” she determined to somehow make ‘them’ or ‘it’ understand she meant no harm, hoping to goodness, they’d feel the same. 

Her “Hello!” was as much a thought form as a spoken word, but it seemed to have the desired effect. Their whirling slowed, and two fine gold strands  stretched towards her hands, while a third touched her forehead, making her feel light headed for a moment, before she became aware of rippling musical tones which cascaded over her skin as though they were living creatures. “Come, join us!”they seemed to say, and her body responded to their music, until she too was part of the graceful ballet being danced on her lawn in the sunshine. She felt as though lemonade bubbles had replaced her blood, making her fizz and sparkle from the soles of her feet to the top of her head – and beyond. All sense of time had disappeared.

Eventually the bubbles settled, the dancing slowed, the music faded and the golden entity of which she’d been a part lifted itself skywards, leaving her standing on her lawn, somewhat bemused. The world had returned to normal, and the day had moved on. The sunlight no longer touched the washing. 

Already she was thinking she'd imagined the whole thing.“How could I have wasted so much time daydreaming? Now I’ve got all that damn, damp washing to manhandle indoors and drape around the kitchen.”

But as she lifted her hands to remove her red skirt and her husband’s green shirt from the line, she felt a slight tingling in her fingertips, as they touched not only dry, but perfectly smooth, uncreased clothes, ready to wear… She looked up at the sky, and said ‘Thank you!”

This is my post for the In Tandem #14 prompt.

Monday, 10 October 2011

How could I resist?

What? A poetic form called a 'Mirrored Oddquain', which Imaginary Garden brought to my attention. Although it was posted Sunday, I only got to see it this morning, which kind of gave me the subject for my attempt at writing one. Apparently  it needs 32 syllables all told, in the sequence  1/3/5/7/1  1/7/5/3/1, so here goes.

a Monday, 
the week is coloured
according to the weekend

the next Sunday, we can paint
over the picture,
make it all

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Sleepy Time Gal?

A nightmare dilemma - duvets are too hot, or too cold. Betwixt-and-between bedcovers need adaptability to cope with the see-saw temperatures of an Autumn night.
160 characters for Monkey Man, brought to mind by my trials and tribulations with finding a comfortable temperature for sleeping - should I be lucky enough to sleep, of course! Hehehe!