Saturday, 13 July 2019

Spoilt for choice

Justin case you thought I had stopped breathing (if you had noticed my absence that is), it is my diluted delight to inform you that my life has been so dull recently that it seemed ill-mannered to inflict the details on you.

Nevertheless, here I am again, still with nothing much to say but determined to say it anyway.

In this neck of the woods we have had no rain for so long that the gardens are crackling from their lack of moisture, added to  which the humidity is (for me anyway) frankly, Hell.

My gloom has been lifted by the amount of TV sport I have absorbed in the past couple of  weeks.

Never remotely interested in sport for the bulk of my 84 years, I have grown to love cricket, 6 nations rugby and Wimbledon more or less despite myself.

Having sung at a wedding at St. M's this morning I returned home in time to see the magnificent Womens' Final at Wimbledon, and tomorrow on my return from church I will have one eye on the Mens' Final and the other on the England/New Zealand World Cricket Final.

What on earth I will do on Monday I can't imagine.

Never has my "Old age" free TV licence seemed more valuable.

Sadly from next Summer I will have to pay for it.

Oh well, progress I suppose!

Will have to leave this non-report and go to water the garden.

Back again soonish (I'm afraid).

Saturday, 1 June 2019

Highly Recommended

Once again Prince Donald has opened his treasure chest of wisdom with some "advice" for the poor uninformed citizens of the UK.

"Boris" he trumpets, (pun intended), "would be a good choice for Prime Minister".

The sheer bloody impertinence of the man is breath-taking. 

Having established such a haven of peace, business acumen, successful inclusiveness on his own shores, he now feels he is in a good position to advise other, failing governments around the world on their best way forward.

Admiring, as I do, the excellent Mr Johnson, I can only hope that the recommendation and verbal support of this supreme orator will be sufficient to ensure that he never has the faintest chance of being voted into the top job.

Are we really not in such trouble already that we need 'help' from the Blond Buffoon to add to our political miseries?

I have some advice for you Donald.  Butt Out.

Thursday, 9 May 2019

........."On the other hand Lord"

Anyone who remembers "Fiddler on the roof " will recognise the title of this blog and the context.

The terminally undecided main character was always weighing opinions in the balance unable to decide  between them.

That is the story of my life.

Never more so than at present, when having just given up one more of my regular weekly voluntary positions, I find myself wondering if I should have gritted my teeth and carried on.


But, no, there is a time when we have to make up our minds how much of the time we have left should be spent doing things which we no longer enjoy and some of which are becoming chores rather than a pleasure.

Now I am down to just two activities per week at St. M's.  Wednesday 'meet and greet' and Fri and Sunday choir member.

I suppose at the age of 84 I should be content with such a limited amount of activity, yet i find myself wondering what I can now find to fill the time I will have to spare.

Although I no longer do any real gardening and have someone once a fortnight to try to hold back the advancing army of weeds etc. I still potter a little and can never make up my mind whether to be pleased about rain (ruining my lovely tree peony, pictured above), but feeding and replenishing all the drought stricken other shrubs.

Likewise putting out yet more peanuts, bird seed and suet feed-balls for the birds, I detest seeing the evil little squirrels getting the lion's share and at the same time am glad that they at least are not a vanishing species.

Watching the antics of the worlds' politicians as well as our own home-grown ones, statement and counter  statement, arguement and counter argument claim and denials I feel as though there are no absolute certainties, no total truths, no one particular viewpoint which undeniably the right one.

It seems that the older I become, the less certain I am of anything, so that if I live to be truly ancient I will by then no nothing at all.

Is it time I fell off the twig?

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Reflections

The four days from Maundy Thursday to  Easter Sunday with hours and hours of singing seem like a distant memory already.

We sang some very difficult and lengthy pieces which took us out of our comfort zone.  The comments after each service were very complimentary and helped to compensate for the hard work.

The Saturday evening whjich included either 13 or 15 Confirmations by the Bishop (can't remember how many) was a particularly happy time.

Sometimes I forget just how old St Mary's is, but the traditional Easter and Christmas services bring the ancient stones to life in a way the normal Sunday ones never seem to and the excellent accoustics make the music even better.

This Saturday evening the weather was perfect and the sun poured through the glorious West window with its amazing colours in a way we seldom see.

We had six readings (mine was no 5), and six psalms as well as a sung eucharist.

Altogether a huge undertaking, but well worth the effort.

A lot of the time attendance at the normal services seems a bit routine, but the taking part in the really big ones (when they are well done), is pure joy.

It is nine years since I was baptised and confirmed and I have never had cause to regret the decision which caused me such a change of direction from my old life.

My life  is much more tranquil than ever before.  Deo Gracias.


Thursday, 11 April 2019

Protest Songs - Hat-tip to Jean at Tregear Vean

Reading one of my favourite blogs this morning I was reminded of my own history of singing on protest marches.

The photo on the left was on one of the Anti-bomb CND marches back in the late 50's or early 60's.

My neck and shoulders (face hidden by the poster ) are bottom left.  The singer/guitar player my youngest brother.

All  three of my brothers and a group of fellow singer/Socialists spent many summers, marching and singing anti-bomb, pro peace songs.

The Aldermaston March was the biggest of these events and always culminated in a rally in Trafalgar Square, where The Hiroshima Song and others would be relayed to the thousands in the crowds.

While very serious about the purpose of the protest, we nevertheless enjoyed the singing, and of  course it helped us to forget our aching legs and feet.

The marches were always lead by amixture of politicians, clergy, actors and writers and often the addresses over the public address system in the Square were of the finest calibre.

While it is true there were also hundreds of police present, both on the march and in the square, it was rare for any serious trouble to break out and mostly relations between "Us" and "Them" were fairly friendly.

I can't help wondering if today's youth could be persuaded away from their phones and gadgets long enough to register any interest at all in the issues of the day.

And if they could, what would they sing?

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

Really Weird Scam

There have been so many reported scams in blogs I hesitate to add yet another, but this morning's effort was truly weird so I thought I'd better air it.

The phone rang, I picked up the receiver and there was an automated call, an American voice, female and , one I have heard before.

This time the speech went something like this: The reason for this call is that someone has taken out legal action against you, if you want to talk to your case oficer the number is...

That was when I realised what was  happening and I put the phone down.

As i said, a very weird one

My previous calls also automated and the same voice were some months ago and warned me that my internet connection was being cut in a few days' time.

Ialways ignore these calls but must admit to feeling slightly rattled by this one.

What on earth do they hope to gain?

The curious (OK nosy) side of me would quite like to know what would have happened had I been stupid enough to ring the number they gave me.

There appears to be no limit to list of tricks the wicked are happy to play on the unwary.

Saturday, 16 March 2019

Tempus Fugit (or something)

Today is my 84th birthday.

I can't believe  it - until I look in a mirror.

Putting my birthday cards up on the shelves of a bookcase I was struck once again by their dimimishing numbers.

As more and more friends family and contemporaries fall off the twig I find myself looking nervously over my shoulder.

Many of we survivors say the same thing as we move closer together to  fill the gaps on the twig.

There are many good things about ageing in this day and age, unlike 100 years or so ago.  We have bus passes, free TV licences (at present), and are given priority when using emergency call-out services, but, the price is high.

Failing health is for many/most of us a major factor in our daily lives but for some of us, myuself included this is not the worst problem.

Maybe I am generalising but I have heard quite a few of my friends say that loss of confidence in dealing with everyday issues is becoming a barrier to living life as  it should be possible to  live it.

This morning my birthday gift from my household demons was to  be greeted with a flood in the garage.  It took a second or two to realise that my freezer had thawed and was continuing  to do so.

Spotting that the light on the plug was not on and that there was none on the freezer either I knew It was time for urgent action.

One of my neighbours was at home so I begged some time from him to clarify the problem.  He checked the plug and wall socket and told me the freezer was basically 'dead'. 

Removing around 100 pounds worth of food and putting it into black  sacks I realised that I do not really need a freezer at all.

I keep buying things and filling it up but seldom use anything from it and can, with care,  manage perfectly well without it.

Now the problem is going to  be disposing of the freezer. 

Oh the joys of being an ancient crone unable to drive and with limited muscle power.

Happy Birthday Ray.!.