Tuesday, 30 June 2015

30th June 2015 - Heat Wave and rubbish

Thought for the day:"Sometimes, I question my sanity. Sometimes, it replies."

And so after a year of strange weather we now get a Heat Wave coming up through France and into the UK. Today, Wales had its hottest day of the year so far - with temperatures ready to climb.
Manchester was hotter than Morocco today.

Personally, I rather like it - sitting here contemplating a nice Gin and Tonic before dinner. Window open - though I think it may be hotter outside than inside! Certainly the cellar is the coolest place in the house.

And the end of the Glastonbury Weekend. Didn't really miss it this year. Couldn't see any performers that I really wanted to see. The headline acts were not my cup of tea. Watched some of the Who, which was alright - but not enough to brave the foul weather for - because of course it did rain last week!

 Somehow most of the photographs are of young ladies in the rain ...  Can't think why !!

Though the occasional "other image " sneaks through..

But still my abiding memory of Glastonbury is the amount of rubbish that a group of people can leave ..  having decided in the past to wait and bring the car into the festival after it was all over.. you get a clear view of our disposable society...  though with tents coming in at less than £10 at Tesco - you can see why people cannot be bothered to take them home..

I understand that there is a mountain of single wellie boots collected every year. One enterprising soul has decided to collect them all - match them up and send them to needy countries... 

Sounds like a plan...  So I drink to this enterprise and suggest we all give it a bit of Welly !!


Monday, 29 June 2015

29th June 2015 - Of Greeks and Groceries

Thought for the day:"A Bad attitude is like a flat tyre - you are going nowhere until you change it"

So, the story in Greece becomes more frenetic, and as we have family in Crete, we are following the news with slightly more interest than we might in other circumstances. Sadly, as with many other problems, there does not seem to be a solution. Banks are shut. Pensioners, we understand, can withdraw up to 60 euros, but only if they can get to a bank - and have cards. Even those in work are unlikely to be paid - as no cash is available for wages and no-one can access their accounts. It is frightening how quickly a modern society can go from viability to crisis.

And back in the UK, I am shamed that my problems are that the fancy wireless speaker that I bought did not charge the battery, and an hour in Tesco trying to work out how the store could replace it - when it was bought on Tesco vouchers with a double up option. They started by suggesting that they could only refund half the price - or have another item worth the vouchers I had spent - still half price, which did not really seem fair to me - after all I wanted a working model of the item that I was returning that was currently failing to work. A few phone calls and it was all very simple - I would have to go to another store tomorrow - because Llanelli is not an "order" store... but a new speaker was in the delivery and would arrive after 3pm tomorrow if I go to Swansea...

Meanwhile, a new HUDL and case and pointer were duly delivered to Llanelli as a Birthday present for Susie - in fairness she did not have a Christmas present or birthday present last year - but the voucher booster also meant that these items were also half price... which is good value  really ...

So while Greece goes to the wall - we are able to ensure deliveries of luxury items within 24 hours.. somehow that is a little shameful - just saying ..

Sunday, 28 June 2015

28th June 2015 - iStill don't know

Thought for the day :" Don't make me repeat myself. . . Cause I can't remember what I just said"

So, I did not get an iThingie - but this is about as close as I get - a bluetooth enabled remote speaker for phone and laptop and stuff like that - except - in the best spirit of iDon't-get-it it doesn't actually work as specified. It works fine if plugged in and paired with the laptop with no probs and is happily playing from  Winamp across the rook at the moment and the sound is pretty good - but it is meant to be a battery operated recharging iThingie. And as far as I can see the battery is not charging - or at least when I take the power source off it does not switch on - Yes I have been on line and downloaded the manual - in 27 languages of course - and checked to see that there is no security thing on the battery to stop it charging until bought - and you have to get a screw driver out to get to the batteries when they finally die so there is no real way that it should be anything other than plug and play...

But if you unplug - it does not play !

Well - charge it for another 24 hours and then see - if the worse come to the worse it can go back to Tesco - though if you buy ion line you don't actually get the slip that says when you bought it ..  I am sure there are ways around that.

In other news, we were up early this morning as I had a phone call form a prospective house buyer. Not through the estate agent which was interesting - but through another website - apparently homes for sale dot com or similar. They had my mobile number so it must be one that I have put on somewhere .. I can only find the official ones though ..

Sadly, after clearing the house, and switching on all the lights (it is a muggy day today and the house looks much better in the sunlight) and sweeping and scraping the mud from the paths in the rain, and carrying stuff to the bottom of the garden - I get a call asking if they can come a little later - and then they ask the price.. Apparently wherever they saw the advert - the price was not on it as they decided that they can not afford the £189,950 I have it listed for ...  Oh well..

But just in case you may wish to relocate to Llanelli - here are the details :

Can't find the Dawson's storyline - but this is the old John Francis details :

Still looks quite good to me .. I would buy it I think !!

Oh well - a day to get other stuff sorted then - some scrambled eggs for breakfast .. yum...

Saturday, 27 June 2015

27th June 2015 - iPhones, iPads, i Don't know !!!

Thought for the day :"I'm having some vision trouble today. I can't see myself doing anything. "

Okay, it is Saturday and the Provincial Mark Meeting went without anything untoward. I was deputising as Organist, but as it happened the main organist turned up and I was not required. And there we find how the technology has increased over the years...

There I was with a full keyboard - takes up a lot of room with a stand and all the leads, and then the large speaker case - 800 watts it claims, and the bits and pieces, and the pedals and the music stand...  and there was John with a couple of small bags - no bigger than a large handbag - and that included his music..

So - it seems that the Apple APP syndrome has moved into a different phase.. As he had an iRig keyboard. Just two octaves and lighter than a toy piano that Schroeder might use...  an 8 inch by 12 inch iSpeaker / amp which turned out to give 40 watts of volume!!. Yup - it is the i-universe. As he plugged the keyboard into his iPad. Plugged the battery operated amp into the iPad and proceeded to load an app that said ORGAN  - and bingo - a full church organ sound in the room !

It did have some restrictions - though in fairness they may be because he was not sure how to mix the apps - he found that he could not display the music while playing the app... Solution? Took a photo of the screen with music on it with his iPhone and used that to play...

Was sort of impressed to be honest - but not enough to invest in anything "i".

Meanwhile - uploaded a vid from the Vale - Peter (chasethestorm.com) Scott used his camera with a microphone attachment and it came out quite well.

Also some piccies from the event...

Crimson Moon

Some Meads

Best to stay Balanced

Crimson Moon at Night
So, chateau 41 to finish the day  - Cheers


Friday, 26 June 2015

26th June 2015 - Of Justice and Avengers

Thought for the day: "I wake up every morning planning to be more productive, then a voice in my head says "Ha Ha !!  Good One!!" and we laugh and take a nap.."

Enjoyed this little snippet form the net...

This Rude Customer Had No Idea Of The Consequences.

(When I was born, there were serious complications, and doctors had to step in to keep both me and my mother alive. They tore all my muscles and damaged a lot of nerves in my neck. I went to a physical therapist for many years. I hardly ever notice it now, 20 years later, but once in a while, after lifting heavy items for a long period of time, my back acts up and it hurts a lot. All of my coworkers know this, and despite this, I’m a very hard worker. 

A customer in his 40s walks in, skips right across the line, and to me, where I’m currently working on a problem with a coffee machine. He sets an empty can of gas, the steel type, down on the floor next to me. I have equipment all over the counter and floor, trying to figure out the problem with the machine. It is also worth mentioning that I live in a small town, where everyone knows everyone. I have hardly ever dealt with rude customers because of this, and it’s well known that we can take abuse until a certain point.)
Customer: “I need you to go out to your gas cabinet and fetch me a new one of these.”
Me: “Sure, let me just clean up a little here.”
Customer: “Do you think I have time for that?! Do you know who I am? I have other places to be!”
Me: “All right, then.”
(I shuffle all the pieces and tubes onto the counter, hoping no one will brush them off and step on them. I run out to the cabinet, open the lock, grab a new can, and head back inside. Right as I walk into the store, I get insanely painful cramps in my back, I manage to scoot over to the customer and set the can down, obviously in pain, but I smile and shrug it off to my coworkers.)
Customer: “You teens are so useless these days! All you do is stare at your phones and your computers! Look at you, you can’t even carry a can of gas! You’re all useless! Now hurry up, for f*** sake! I’m going to a very important job interview over at [local entrepreneur, with the owner’s name as a company name]!”

(The other customers have been startled at his behavior by now, but at the mentioning of said company, many of them snicker.)
Me: “You know what? My neck was nearly broken when I was born. I have worked at [Gas Station] for three years, and never have I had a more rude and pretentious customer than you. I want you to calm down so we can finish this transaction. You’re startling the other customers.”
Customer: “Does it look like I give a s***!?”
Me: “That’s it.”

(I pick up the phone and dial a number. My boss is looking at me with approval.)
Me: *on the phone* “Hey, Dad, I want you to know there’s a man in his 40s, drives a green Honda CRV, who said he’s heading over for an interview with you today. He has been a real pain in the butt, and if you hire him, I’m not giving you grandchildren.”

(The customer’s face goes pale. He looks at me, the other customers who are now laughing at him, and scurries out the door, leaving both his old and the new can behind. My dad didn’t hire him, either.)

In other news...

Steed (Patrick MacNee)- Died June 25th 2015
I post this for three especial reasons - one I always enjoyed the Avengers in all their versions and cast members - but Steed was always a key anchor of the show - but secondly because so many of the episodes were filmed at my old School, Haberdashers' Aske's in Elstree, near the main Elstree Studios where they were made, and I found my early fascination with film making and how sets were constructed and how the storyboard was created and filmed.. and thirdly for my German friends - as I remember travelling across to Germany to find that this was a popular show in the sixties called "mit Schirm, Charme und Melone" which translates as "This an Umbrella, Charm and a Bowler Hat" - who would have thought !!

And wuith those few thoughts I leave you to the rest of the day ...

Thursday, 25 June 2015

25th June 2015 - Red Caps or White?

Thought for the day: "Narcissism is such an unattractive quality. It looks good on me, though!"

Found an interesting thing to muse on today.. I was buying my customary Diet Coke in the bottle and also on this occasion a box load of cans - I use them a lot in the car...  Now- up until now - I have always recognised the difference between "Full Fat Coke" and "Diet Coke" when serving by looking from the top.. It is simple - the coke bottles with the white caps are diet and the ones with the red cap are real! When there is lemonade - they are white cap as well - but as the bottle content is clear there is no confusion.

But today I looked at my 3 litre bottle of diet and saw that it has a red cap!!
And - as I happened to be opening a can of diet I saw that against the grey can - the ring pull itself was also red!!

I wonder if it is a mistaken batch, a special order for Farm Foods, or a change in marketing...

Watch this space I suppose !!

Meanwhile maybe a glass of Chateau 41 to keep the wolf from the door...


Wednesday, 24 June 2015

24th June 2015 - The Origins of Fitta'n Elfie

Thought for the day: "Lying about my age is easier now that I have trouble remembering what it is."

Fitt'n Elfie
It is a sad story to tell. Young Fitta'n Elfey did not really know his background. He was unaware of the start to his sad upbringing. He was from quite a proud family and that was part of his downfall. His mother, Fitt t'Bust was always a popular lass as a youngster. She was outstanding in her field, and was well noted by the lads who chased after her. They loved the way Fitt t'Bust would carry on jiggling after she stopped, and would take all sorts of opportunities to drop items in her way so that she would bend over to pick them up, leaving plenty of flesh showing on her ample bosom. She was generally unaware of the ploys but enjoyed her popularity with a simple approach...  She was not really renowned for her intellect it must be said...  but for her profile!

But one of the most popular lads was a cousin, Fitt f'Nuthin. He was always hanging around her and complimenting her and dropping sweets and flowers, and generally courting in his own individual way. He also was not the brightest glowworm in the cloud, but he meant well and she grew to like him. And in the end, he asked her to marry him and she blushed bright green - as most Goblins do, and said an eager yes..

They say that they made a really charming couple as they strolled across the fairy ring stamping on the ants and bugglywigs and blowing raspberries from their backsides and making faces at the congregation - the way you are meant to at a Goblin Wedding - for the Fitt's were a very old Clan of Goblins from the darkwoods. 

Everything went very well for the couple, Fitt t'Bust bloomed and Fitt f'Nuthin was the proudest Goblin in the neck of the woods. A couple of other cousins came to help build them a house. There was Fitt f'Purpuss and Fitt f'Wurk and they built them a fine home while they went on a honeymoon arranged by Fitt f'Travul... A lovely honeymoon with mead and a place to stay on a Greenfield Site.

They even had a personal trainer to help them relax, Fitt'n Well made the whole honeymoon a pleasure, while the evenings found Fitt f'Nuthin becoming better acquainted with the finest attributes of his new wife...

Yes, they had an idyllic start to their life together. Now, no-one knows what went wrong. Whether there was a bit of jealousy from the other Goblins and some underhand magix, or whether it was a natural but unfortunate outcome... but all was well until they had a small baby goblin - their first!  They had looked forward to this moment and had made plans for the upbringing of their little offspring, but when Fitt f'Nuthin first saw the baby - he gasped and pointed accusingly at Fitt t'Bust.. for the baby was white - or rather a pinky colour and not a healthy Green One at all!!

Fitt t'Bust protested her innocence, and even the feeble brain of her husband had to agree that he had really not left her alone long enough for any other form of liaison !!  So they called a family member to help them out ..  Fitt z'Avidle the doctor came and examined the baby..  

"Definitely a Goblin" he pronounced after looking at the child.... "but the wrong colour!  Not a hint of Green here at all!! " He consulted his medical books and came up with no answers, but then decided to go and call on the wisest goblin of the Fitt Clan - who was a little pompous, but knew everything!!

When Fitt'n E'nosit examined the child he recalled that once back in the histories a similar thing had happened.. "What we have here" said the wise goblin, "is a case of  de-pig-mentation and could have been as a result of eating too much bacon  - but all the colour has gone!! You have an Albino Goblin"

Well!! What should they do!!  They were proud Goblins from a fine family and a fine clan. The Fitt's had ruled the darkwoods for such a long time that only the trees could remember - and many of them were senile!.  If they kept the child it could turn out to be an embarrassment like Fitt'n Nerdy who covered his whole body with brown cloth except for his pot belly sticking out and lay down and pretended to be an unripe acorn... totally unacceptable behaviour for the Goblin Rulers of the Darkwood..  His continued presence in the Darkwood would shame the whole family and clan.

It was decided that he could not stay in the Darkwood.. but unwilling to set him adrift in the big world with no idea of his heritage, they tied a bell around his neck, with the inscription "FITT'n" on it, and took the babe to a a place outside the Darkwoods.. there they found an elf couple who had never had any children of their own, and left the babe upon their doorstep ...

And so it was that the little child; he with the pointy ears and the bright red hair; he without a trace of Green about him; he with a little bell about his neck with the name "Fitt'n"; was loved and brought up by those elves as though he were their own elfling...

True, his mannerisms were often not those of a high elf. True his voice sounded a little course to the refined elven tongue. True, his red hair was a little shocking. True, they hid him in a box in the basement when guests came to visit. But he grew up in a family knowing that he was an "elf to be reckoned with" because his "parents" told him so. They taught him to be Elf Sufficient.. to stand up for Hims Elf .. and to seek his own Elf and Happiness...

And so, when he grew to age - Fitta'n Elfie made his way into the world ...  but he never knew why he was so attracted to the colour Green - and anything that turned out to be a Green One!!   And in fairness - no-one ever told him ...

And that is the story of Fitta'n Elfie ...   so I raise my glass to him ...  Cheers!

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

23rd June 2015 - Fitta'n Elfie In Khanate

Thought for the day: "Don't jump to confusions."

And as I wait for more pictures to come back from the VALE.. I can introduce you to Fitta'n Elfey, a strange creature - but as an Elf he is able to exist in both the Khan's Camp - mainly Orc, Goblin and Undead, and the Duke's camp - human.

He is not the most intelligent individual - tends to take things rather literally - but is good for fetching and carrying and is able to hold a tune or two if pressed - though his songs also tend to be fairly simple - and occasionally concentrate upon the colours of Goblins and Orcs - that would be a green one !!


Here we see him in the Crimson Moon rather than the Dark Side - but he tends to spend more time with the Khanate... 

"it is I... Eclaire !! "
 Have a good day... Cheers

Monday, 22 June 2015

22nd June 2015 - Vale and Family Values

Thought for the day:"I before e except when you run a feisty heist upon a weird beige foreign neighbour"

Well, back from the VALE,  and we are getting better at our take downs - both bars packed away and ready to go in four and a half hours. Granted that the threat of the big black clouds on the horizon and the habit of a sudden squall across the glade was a fairly large incentive.. the choice of bringing the canvas back to Wales to dry out or pack away dry if we worked fast and hard...

I am sure that the VALE has its own met system, thought Ginga has formed another opinion. We were accompanied on this occasion once again by Woodrow, aka Rubbish Pete, aka Chasethestorm.com. Her theory is simple.. he is not so much a Storm Chaser as a Storm Bringer. I would not really mind his flippant remarks about it "being quiet",  that "there is no wind", "peaceful isn't it", and no - that was not an Only Way is Essex "Innit" - at least I do not think it was!   No I would not mind those comments, however ill advised, but he just has to walk out with his camera and there is a clap of thunder. Just has to walk into the dunes and there is a deluge of biblical proportions - if only for a few minutes. Still, I look forward to seeing his photos - I seem not to have got my camera out this event...

But, not a large system, but friendly and fun. The Crimson Moon provides a nice location for the Duke's Camp, and the Dark Side provides a darker, more atmospheric location for the Khan's group of beast and undead. Just wish it was not so far to carry everything up a hill !!!  getting too old for this lark...

Watching out for some photos posted by others...  None appeared so will have to use a couple from my phone ..

 The Dukes Camp ... 
 Drunken Monk teddies on guard..

The Khan's Camp - a little more sinister - a little more "undead" and Orc..

From inside - if you want service - just ring the bell  (it is outside)  - loved the shadow - had to take this one
Staff - Hard at work ...

But, the quick take-down allowed me to get home by 11.30pm and to sleep in my own bed. Up early to empty the Bothy and move it from the yellow lines before 9am, but all sorted now - though I will have to go to the warehouse and unload Bertha later - but for the moment, a nice cup of tea and wade through 123 emails... 

Meanwhile - a few thoughts from my favourite re-enactor...

Musings from Mr  Morgan the Barber Surgeon..

It's very difficult to fall out with W H Smiths. After all, Smiths is as much a part of British culture as Gregs, Halfords and Mr Whippy. But today I was astonished at the level to which they had sunk in order to flog a few more magazines.

You see I was in the W H Smiths reading room, the magazine section, looking for that bastion of heritage and adventure 'Skirmish' magazine when I found my gaze diverted by an orange plastic trough hanging from one of the shelves. Now this was in direct line of sight blocking all the other more worthy publications like Cannon Balls Monthly, Ships Rigging Weekly, Experimental Fighter Aircraft Daily and Military Momentarily. I wouldn't have minded had it contained Steam Engines Hourly but it had some gaudy celebrity rag telling the brain dead the exact location of Kim Kardistan or whatever her name is and that of her infernal enhanced boobed brood that infests every channel of the telly these days. 

I have no interest at all in what they're up to or what Ginger Spice is having for tea on Thursday or when Peter bloody Andre's having his ear wax reamed out. If someone has an overriding need to know how to ink in ones eyebrows Egyptian fashion well, quite frankly, that's up to them but why does W H Smith think that information of this sort is a priority for the sort of person who would invest in this months issue of Classic Bayonets of the Franco Prussian War...er, Monthly? Come on Smiths, get with it. Horses for courses.

On the other hand I owe a pint to my friend Davey Sharkeye who's a pirate (arrrrrrrrr) who recommended a certain waterproofing for tents. Old Sharkeye (arrrrrr) waterproofs everything with this stuff including Mrs Sharkeye, also a pirate (arrrrrrrr) and tis good indeed. In fact I have to admit I got a tadge carried away with it, now not only is the tent waterproofed but also my coat, hat, garage door (where coat was hung to be waterproofed) grass on the croquet lawn of Morgan Mansions, the front portion of the boots that I was wearing when I was waterproofing everything else and Ernie next door. Topping stuff Sharkeye (arrrrrrrrr).

So - a glass of Chateau 41 - (Susie has put another load on - what a wonderful wife ..)
and a good night to you ....