Friday, January 20, 2017

Friday


The noisy invalid, perfectly able to jump on the sofa or walk upstairs but she practically moans all the time!  Back to the vet tomorrow for bandage change - joy!  God knows what it all will cost.


Went to the gallery yesterday and I bought these two vases, I had seen them months ago, or similar, and fancied single roses in them, one problem is the inside  which is porous, so water penetrates through, LS says rice water should seal them.  Anything I fancied, yes but too pricey, small jewel like painting of birds and flowers, just love the use of gold in paintings....

Changeable weather;  Today, the day of America's fate;)  LS said this morning it may not be so bad after all (think he was trying to cheer me up) it will be a bit like the 1960's, things will be upended something might come out of it............




Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Wednesday 18th (two days to go ;(

Well due to a large area of depression I have been quiet, the weather is the dullest grey imaginable.  But things do happen, yesterday we went to Helmsley for a cup of coffee at the Walled Garden cafe by the castle, unfortunately it was closed, but found a lovely little cafe in the town centre, dog friendly, and good coffee, somewhere we shall be going back to.  A few tourists mooched around Helmsley and I bought some gruyere cheese from the delicattessen but no emmenthal cheese for fondue.  There are things missing from this part of Yorkshire and also aubergine is one of them.

We had been to the vets, Lucy has been limping around with her old war wound, on the pads of her foot.  The vet said it was a common occurence in cocker spaniels, so tomorrow she goes for a small operation on her foot and to have her teeth cleaned.  LS said 'wow, we have a whole day off from her' our mad as a box of frogs silly dog, but we will both be worried ;)  And what a commotion there will be after the operation and having to keep a dressing and sock on her!

Also just finished Carr's A month in the Country,  the jist of the story is about a young man just back from that terrible first World War, he is paid to restore an 500 year old painting in a church.  He sleeps in the belfry of the church and has a friend Moon who is an archaeologist and is digging for the grave, in an adjoining field, of a knight killed about the same time as the painting.  Our narrator uncovers one of the most common paintings of the time, The Day of judgement, those ascending and those descending, and amongst the people is a prominent person with a scar on his face.  He is villified at the time by the villagers, and is a bit of a mystery.  Of course as the book ends the person in the grave that Moon uncovers turns out to be him, they find a Muslim crescent on his chest - our knight is a heretic, sold his soul to save his skin.


St.George and the slaying of the dragon on the left and St.Christopher on the right

It reminded me of Pickering church with all its vast walls of paintings, the stories of what happens to the wicked writ large in paint, I have written about these paintings in a earlier blog, they remind me of the picture books you read to young children.  The tones of morality of course are not for children but naive people who could not read.  It struck me that Banksy is the street artist of our lifetime, his morality shines out like a beacon on street walls, we are reminded in vivid terms what really makes the world turn around....
Too many Banksy's to choose from. Ironic.



Saturday, January 14, 2017

Saturday

IMG_0351
Could we see your passport sir. This is the United Fields of Donkey Land (UFDL) and although we allow the free movement of animals (including humans) throughout the UFDL, a small contribution to our carrot coffers would be appreciated.

LS sent it me last night, the donkeys live in the village of Minions in Cornwall by the way, not too far away from our friend Sanctuary, and sadly we did not have any carrots....


Just a video against fracking from my favourite singers, who are definitely getting older but still bounce to a veritable anti-fracking song in Sussex.... If you want more go to 'Seize the Day'
but for 'Frakka Hakka try....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abtx3tXjRwE&feature=youtu.be

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Wednesday 11th January



the river bank slightly disintergrating
The wind is blowing dried leaves round the garden, it is not gale force at the moment, maybe later.
Yesterday we went out to coffee with friends in the village, J had ordered sale books from Folio and they arrived in two boxes whilst we were there.  He has this collection, not sure he reads them all, though he says he does.  LS collects as well, pretty as they are, I have the fairy tale books, books are for me something to read, their outward appearance is not a matter of vanity, perhaps that sounds snobby when it was not meant to be.
Today, there is a funeral in the church yard, the grave is near the house, the grave digger came yesterday to dig the hole, the heap of soil looms large near the wall, must admit that this is the first time a chill went down my spine,  expect it was the nearness; as it is only local people that end up in the church there are hardly any burials each year.
The events committee met on Monday evening, LS is a member we are to have the quiz night on Valentine's day, and the barbecue in June.  LS wants more events in the church but it seems you have to belong to a different committee for that.  Funnily enough on Saturday the person who mows the church yard came down  to cut the branches of the great yew that overhangs our pathway and it is under this yew that the burial will take place.... 
Saturday we had gone to the pub and fell in talking with a couple, Shawn the youngish man lived in a static near to the pub, and it turned out that once his family had owned it, but due to a family debt it had been sold to a cousin and then of course sold on.  My mind immediately springs to the fact that the young cannot afford to live in their ancestral places because of the ridiculous cost of houses, there are about two dozen houses in the village, 3 bungalows are for the elderly (presumably what in the olden days we would call council) a pair of semi-detached next door to the bungalows again look like council, and then the rest of the village. Cottages (which of course are always highly priced) the big properties and our three new houses, all built with profit in mind.  There is something not right in this country allowing the price of houses to get out of hand, but there we all  rush eager to fund our old age, perhaps decent social pensions would not go amiss.......
The government are talking about 'garden cities' once more, and are probably casting their eye to prime development spots in our protected countryside, here I am talking about virgin unbuilt land such as the moors, but of course the reason why is because certain people in small towns and villages do not want 'attachments' of modern developments in their pretty villages, sometimes we get very territorial and we need a way to get round all this.

So I have one book on loan from J, looks interesting, set in Yorkshire in a church.


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Sunday memories



Capturing a moment in time a few years ago, maybe I will probably never see this walk again out on the racecourse at Lansdown in Bath, but for a moment the world was heavily crystallised into cold white frost and it became a wonderland.  There are moments of perfect beauty that nature will unfold for us and we occasionally have the privilege of participating in - but it was very cold that day.

This was  my daily walk with Moss I would follow the line of trees, sometimes my old buzzard would be there, and I would brood that what lay below the racecourse were  Bronze Age barrows, lives lived thousands of years ago.  It was here at the beginning of the 20th century the Lansdown gold 'sun disc' was found, nothing terribly spectacular, some speculated that it was the base of a drinking cup, perhaps a bit like the Rillaton gold cup in Cornwall.  

The racecourse was on high ground, and the 'edge' of the Cotswolds ended here just outside Bath, so the barrows looked over the valley to the Severn Estuary and Wales.  Yes you could even see the two bridges that crossed the estuary and if the day was clear enough you could look in the opposite direction to Avebury a mere 30 odd miles away.  You would not see the stones of course but that ugly Lansdown monument to a lord who had pretensions to 'owning' the land as far as you could see - as if!

The racecourse was also the place for a fair in the 19th Century, I can just imagine the people of Bath hauling themselves up the steep Weston Lane to partake in the festivities.  Moss who you see in the last photo, was my companion, though until Suki got too old, she would also accompany us.  Suki was scared of the hot air balloons that lifted into the air, often on early on a Sunday morning.  I had seen them rising from the city and they would head for the racecourse occasionally coming down. The basket would hit the ground several times, and then would tumble over, people hanging on, no one seemed to get hurt and you could almost feel the palpable feeling of excitement and possible relief to be on terra firma, the recovery jeep would have been following to transport them back.

Sometimes we would wander  up to Kelston Round Hill to me a mystical place, a rounded 'tump' in the middle of the landscape, the fifth photo down.  Deer would be in the fields and the little muntjacs that haunted this part of the Bath landscape.  I suspect that one day the Bath racecourse will be built over, its last traces of prehistory obliterated by more modern needs, but what I will remember of that place is finding the 'wild' remnants of the landscape. the place where the deer slept and old walls tracing a past history, and even old megaliths.

Also of course, the ghost stories someone told me of the 'Roundhead' soldier that marched down the path one evening, a Civil War escapee from the battle  at Langridge.  I have traced the 17th century banks and ditches of this war, stopped in solomn silence to read  on the notice board of one Royalist friend fighting and seeing his old friend a Roundhead killed.  My ghost, I kid you not, was he real? was spied early one foggy Sunday morning a Scottish man complete with kilt and hat walking along the path, Moss went berseck as first the hat appeared and then the kilted man strode into view through the fog and he strolled by with a pleasant 'good morning'!  Maybe he was just out for an early stroll I will never know...










Kelston Round Hill


Moss and co

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Saturday

Yes the wheelbarrow did arrive, always look forward to spring after Xmas ;) Also apart from some wool arriving, this for my grand daughter, she wants a gray blanket knitted with large needles, apparently you can knit with your arms according to her.  The third thing to arrive was a box of tea, we have both given up on teabags but unfortunately the supermarkets have given up on loose tea.  So nowadays I send off to Twinings in Belfast for a dozen packets of 'English Breakfast' and half a dozen 'Bergamot'.
My tea makes a remarkable journey which I can view online via the tracking.  Leaves Belfast friday night, arrives at the West Midland airport, trucked to the depot there, makes the long drive down to Teesside dept, where it then arrived at our house lunchtime.  And that of course is not even calculating the time it has been picked in India? processed and then sent to Ireland for packing, what would we do if the world suddenly stopped and yet of course that is exactly what is happening to people in Syria, so I should be very grateful to the commercial world I rely on but can do little for those people caught up in war....except nag for better conditions for them.
Well in my small humdrum world, I have finished the third Rickman  - The Remains of an Altar, rather bloody murders, Watkins (author of The Long Straight Track) John Mitchell (dabbles in esoteric things) and Elgar, made their appearance in one form or another.  Rickman is so clever blending history, and just possible, might be true, fiction together that one hardly knows what is truth and what isn't..
A neighbour turned up yesterday afternoon, going to Tennants the auctioneers today to bid on something, not sure if I could stand around in auction rooms for hours waiting for something to come up.  He did say that they have in their foyer, a whole series of the original paintings for the saucy postcards we all used to read with such delight, but without the funny quips underneath, which are place alongside though.
Poor old chickens are in till 28th February, more or less guessed as much, the strictures are more strict now by Defra
"We have taken several actions to reduce the risks - to help protect poultry and captive birds from avian flu. If you keep poultry – whether on a commercial scale or simply a small backyard flock – you are now required by law to keep them “housed” (under cover and kept separate from wild birds).
This requirement (the Prevention Zone) will now be extended until 28 February 2017. We have banned gatherings of poultry across the UK."
It seems that the spread of the Avian flu in France is resulting in the whole culling of wild ducks in some districts, and various cases are starting to appear in this country.  Though I notice that the Chief Vet has said you can let them out for cleaning for a short time....


Friday, January 6, 2017

Friday, the day the wheelbarrow arrives!

Early morning and  the dog is crashing around downstairs, she had a 'freaky' day yesterday and it has left her full of energy.  Not so me, a migraine all yesterday has left me washed out....
Another birthday will turn round on Monday, my choice of meals out has been fish and chips, strange choice I know but I miss the Silver Street chip shop just round from the old cottage in Whitby.  We should be exploring the town whilst the summer visitors are away, but only go in for  shopping days...
Sometimes I think to change my personality with a new batch of clothes,  Gudrun is a possibility but even I could not wander round in brightly ethnic clothes layered one on top of another, and of course for a muddy stroll in the country they are not exactly practical, there again amongst the Goths of Whitby I would hardly strike a different note........
The day before the headache I had been studying Orkney, prodding my consciousness as to whether one could live in such an environment with that windy stormy weather that is so capricious and then in plain little four square houses with no trees, that would break my heart.  The landscape has its own beauty, but the act of living where everything has to be fetched from the mainland and fresh vegetables must be at a premium would be difficult.  A map shows how scattered the islands are, prehistoric burials and probably settlements all perched on the edge of the land next to the sea.

National Geographic map

Yet these faraway flung islands in Scotland are now taking centre stage as the Neolithic centre of Great Britain, the two  circles that encompass the Ness of Brodgar settlement point to a way of life that is maybe not  sophisticated but must have been very well organised.

Wiki @ S Marshall - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Has Stonehenge been shunted off its podium, cannot answer that one but it is later in date and of course somewhat different, and if we must look on competition as the driving force of mankind perhaps they did it better in the far North in the early stone period than they did in the South - now that is a turn around for the books...  Of course diet might explain it, next to  bountiful water plenty of fish and animals to hunt on land, cattle of course.  Not forgetting that there was more land around to move from the continent across those wild running seas.

But no matter how much you look at the map, compared to the great bulk of the rest of our island, it was the very tip of the land mass these people settled.  What pulls my heart is not the archaeology of the place, but the ruggedness of the land itself, the rocks, the stones erected so labouriously.
The exquisite corbelling of the Maes Howe tomb, surely an architectural wonder of the world, though I notice it has been restored, in the 19th century? so many questions.....

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

A nostalgic look back

Early 14th century print of mounter



I have been uploading photos to the new external hard drive and came across one called The Studio.  A few years back I had taken photos of LS working on one of Michael's scroll which was in a pretty damaged condition.  Now LS was a conservator before he retired, one of the reasons to retire because of the tediousness of bringing scrolls back to life.  A few days ago LS had bid on a print of a 14th century mounter, which was successful and it made me think of him working.
The lady below is a 'lady of the night,' hence the tissues in her mouth, the scroll is pretty crumpled, and you can see in the second photo down, the strips of thin paper to reinforce the creases, all had to be taken off and new ones applied.  The use of water on scrolls to remove the fine tissue backing papers is usual, and the reverse procedure of putting on new tissue papers damp and tamping them down with a fine brush the next part.  All in all on your knees, typical Japanese style is hard and somehow LS had fallen out of love with conservation!  Michael was a great collector of scrolls and icons, he brought to the house once half a dozen large boxes of icons, mostly Russian, which had been in storage for 30 years, all unpacked and then packed to go back into storage.

  



removing fly muck


Michael is helping with the tedious job

all silks removed



Finally restoring detail to the scroll
 One of the things I delight in are the boxes of dyes and minerals that he had collected over the years, some of the paint materials used are precious such as pearls and turquoise.


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Hello 2017

Let us hope that all the miserable stories do not permeate this year as well, though of course they drag themselves on unwilling feet into the New Year.  But HAPPY NEW YEAR to everyone.  

Well we did not stay up for the festivities but watched the three Bronte sisters on BBCi player, two hours with the three sisters and their lamentable brother Bramwell was very enjoyable and Haworth Vicarage is only 12 miles from Todmorden where my daughter lives.

We sat in front of a blazing fire, we had actually been out earlier in the day at lunchtime to a pub at Great Barugh, (means high hill I think) apparently across the road to the pub there is a square enclosure which is probably a Roman camp, on the road from York-Malton- and maybe the Camps at Cawthorn.



Think it is the time to take down the decorations, as it all becomes a long Christmas .........................
The other day in that little triangle of land from the copse a grey partridge appeared, in the photo you can also see a dozy pigeon, (we have at least a dozen of these in the garden) and the little dove sunbathing in the warm sun.  Thought at first she had been attacked by the hawk, but she was perfectly well when she flew away.  First time I have seen partridge (think that is what they are)


Well a brief interlude interrupted by the Australian visitors and their two gorgeous children who have come for some eggs, and be introduced to the hens, freedom on January 5th??

We did vaguely welcome the New Year at 12 oclock, fireworks at the pub, woke Lucy up and she came flying upstairs landed on my head trembling with fear, and when I finally wriggled away from her, she slept with us until she became less fearful and she trotted downstairs again.  David, the grandpa of the children, spent three hours up with their dog.  One day they will ban fireworks which will probably be a good idea.

Good bye Christmas

Saturday, December 31, 2016

fog (and notes)


“This valley bounds North-East Yorkshire on the south and separates it from the Chalk Wolds of the East Riding. More or less enclosed by higher land, it is a low lying basin, the average altitude of its almost flat floor being less than one hundred feet above sea level. Its length from east to west is about thirty miles, and its width from north to south varies from five to ten miles. The Limestone Hills overlook it on the north; the Howardian Hills on the south-west; and the Chalk Wolds on the south. The Vale narrows toward the east where it debouches on to the coast at Filey Bay. In the west, the narrow Coxwold-Gilling gap, about fives miles long by one mile wide, links it to the Vale of York or Mowbray."
(F. Elgee, 1930. 3)

“When I went to school I learned that the Vale in which we lived had once been a lake, but long ago the sea had eaten through the hills in the east and so released the fresh waters, leaving a fertile plain. But such an idea would have seemed strange to my innocent mind… I seemed to live, therefore, in a basin wide and shallow like the milkpans in the dairy; but the even bed of it was checkered with pastures and cornfields, and the rims were the soft blues and purples of the moorlands” 
(Read, 1933, The Innocent Eye).

I was going to start with photos of the foggy mist we have had encountered over the last few days, there are already dire warnings over the radio about the fog down south and here in Yorkshire.  But then I got thinking, really we have mists and fog round here because it is the Vale of Pickering, once upon a time a lake, home to the famous mesolithic Starr Carr settlement.  The Vale is surrounded by hills and the land is drained by many rivers, except the Derwent which at one point reversed its flow. See Note below...


She met an Irish water spaniel yesterday, not impressed.






You will see that our walk takes us along a bank, this is the protecting buffer against the river flooding onto the fields. This bank is on either side of our river Seven, the other side stops the river from flooding the village.  The river people have just finished shoring up the banks of the river just along here which are deeply shelving.  The river rises on Rosedale moor, one day I shall go and try and find it's place of beginning.
One of the links below in the Statements of Significance of the Land has the archaeologist referring to the ritual significance of its watery landscape, giving a 'sacred' meaning to the Vale, the backward flowing river Derwent being one such phenomena - mmm.  Could this be the 'Land of Deira' the Dark Age kingdom next to Bernicia, not sure, but the story of the Christian princess from Kent coming up to marry the king and converting him could well give rise to the early establishment of the Saxon churches round here, somewhere it states that nearly every settlement you see in the Vale has a probable Saxon beginning.

Notes;
"Patterns of landscape significance continue through time with an excavated complex at West Heslerton, which is articulated in its final form as a Roman shrine, associated with both a well and spring. Though the earliest phases were unexcavated the assumption is that there was an earlier prehistoric use. An increasing number of Roman ritual sites within the Vale of Pickering seems to confirm that the Vale was sacred from early prehistory, perhaps on account on the ‘backward’ flowing river

 From the 8th century the Vale of Pickering is associated with the people of Deira, and may have formed its heartland, as the Vale has the highest density of early churches in the UK. There are a remarkable number of 7th and 8th century religious communities found on the borders and approaches of the Vale of Pickering (at Lastingham, Gilling, Stonegrave, and Coxwold). Within the Vale the survival of architectural or sculptural elements such as Anglo-Saxon carved stone and/or the reuse of Roman material (sarcophagi etc) and archaeology attest to the significance of sites such as Kirby Misperton, Sherburn, Hovingham and Kirkdale. These may all be associated with prayer houses or burial by Deira’s ruling elite. If the Vale of Pickering is the heartland of Deira it may account for anomalies in the faunal record at West Heslerton, where the lack of market age cattle in a huge animal bone assemblage may result from their being used in the payment of tithes or taxes. 

Bede describes monasteries situated in the wetland. This description chimes well with the probable situation in the Vale of Pickering in this period, with evidence suggesting a significant causeway linking Pickering to Kirby Misperton, and another similar causeway at Sherburn. This would again suggest that a number of these places in the Vale were occupying positions within the earlier sacred landscape. The sense of place and ritual associations of water within the enclosed valley, which were established as early as the Mesolithic, continue: the parish churches established at this point continue in use (albeit much modified) today.


River Derwent note; Before the last Ice Age the waters of the upper Derwent flowed east and discharged into the sea at Scalby, near Scarborough. The River Hertford, the present middle Derwent and the River Rye flowed east and discharged into the North Sea near Filey Brigg.[5] During the Ice Age these outlets were blocked by a tongue of ice which extended down the North Sea basin carrying with it large amounts of glacial detritus. As the ice melted the detritus was deposited to form the Wykeham moraine and permanently blocked the eastern exits of the watercourse. Water from the melting ice and the North York Moors formed a lake in the Vale of Pickering which expanded and deepened until eventually the water escaped by overflowing at the lowest point at Kirkham. The water cut a gorge through the Howardian Hills as it drained away southwards, breaching the Escrick moraine just east of Wheldrake, and joining the Humber glacial lake


http://www.northyorks.gov.uk/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=22213&p=0

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vale_of_Pickering

Thursday, December 29, 2016

29th December




  Two old photos..
  
A blistering hot day with Moss my old dog in Bath

Solva, the woods opposite the Cambrian Inn


A fog descends on us like the 'peasoupers' I experienced in Wolverhampton as a child when hurrying home from school.  But yesterday as the fog lifted by lunch and the sun came through, the world became crystallized by the hoar frost that lay on the land - so beautiful.  The world is and can be a very beautiful place, nature makes it so.  Sadly I did not take photos of the walk, just marvelling at the crystals that formed on each blade of grass, and the spider webs caught up in the tracery of ice..
So the 'Grim Reaper' is taking his toll this winter, each morning more news comes after each death, celebrities we have known.
A small story from before Xmas, there was a burial a couple of months ago and the headstone was erected recently, also about two weeks ago a stonecarver came and cleaned up the stone next to the new arrival so I went to look.  Now I could be making this story up but I came to the conclusion that two brothers had been laid side by side with a gap of 80 years between them.  The first a toddler of 19 months had died in June 1936, the second much older person had been born in August 1936 and had died in June of this year..  There is a story everywhere you care to look, I marvelled at the longevity of love for this little mite so many years ago, no photo because there are names.

Still reading Rickman's 'The Fabric of Sin' in which is mentioned Garway Church, which incidentally does exist and was built by the Knight's Templars, the tower is joined by a short passageway, obviously it was defensive, all photos from Wikipedia....

The story is set in Herefordshire on the Welsh/English border, and this church is not far from the more famous Kilpeck Church.


The 'green man' looking not very green, no foliage for a start, and his fingers seem to be in his mouth, and is that a cord and tassels, or maybe a snake?


Now this below is the dovecote, on private land, apparently according to the story it has 666 pigeon holes inside?? not sure I believe that, it looks rather harmless.


http://greenmanenigma.com/theories.html

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

27th December

The world is still dark outside, and the house quiet, Lucy has had something wrong with her paw for sometime, so walking has been stopped the last few days.  She of course brings it on herself by scratching at the door of the hens, think she reckons they have better food than her! Too dozy to wake up for opening presents but she does at last and is happy with the snowman.



Well I had  Phil Rickman's books, one already read the Susan Lulham, it did not have a satisfactory ending though, you have to get the next book written from this novella.  Nigella always appears at Christmas for me mostly cookery books from my daughter, and she also bought me Kaffe Fassett 'Glorious Needlepoint' plus a large saucepan for cooking all the pasta they need when they come!

Sometimes I think Rickman has been crossed with Steven King and a historian...

Christmas day was spent in the morning talking to family on the phone and then lunch time next door to the pub. The girls offer a free drink, though we always try to pay.  Neighbours from across the road came in with their family, all over from Australia, two darling little girls skipped around, the fire crackled and the world was at peace.  LS, or Paul, is over the moon living in this village, all that I can ask for says he............ 

Two storms have rattled through, rain on the wind, which blows from the West with such ferocity, luckily the leaves are down from the trees.  Note how I can always know the way of the wind, it is because we live next door to a church, facing east/west.......

Which reminds me of two articles I have read online, the first is about trees and the fact they are living organisms, able to communicate with each other, and also feeling pain, the link is here.   And the second is only of interest to those that love megaliths..

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Xmas tidings

 Happy Christmas everyone, may your family and friends be with you on this day, and may the New Year not be as eventful as 2016.  Love Thelma xxx



Saturday, December 24, 2016

The Day before Christmas

The North wind doth blow and we shall have snow,
And what will poor robin do then, poor thing?
He'll sit in a barn and keep himself warm
and hide his head under his wing, poor thing.


Well a simple nursery rhyme about the robin is something that went through my head this morning, though the Darkling Thrush by Hardy would seem more appropiate to the wet, windy and cold weather... I just love Hardy's mournful gloom his books a great favourite when I was younger.


The Darkling Thrush
I leant upon a coppice gate
When Frost was spectre-grey,
And Winter's dregs made desolate
    The weakening eye of day.
The tangled bine-stems scored the sky
    Like strings of broken lyres,
And all mankind that haunted nigh
    Had sought their household fires...

The rest of the verses are in the link above.

But enough of the weather, and those poor birds at this time of the year, I have fed them, and there is as yet still no snow. But is it not appropiate for Xmas Eve, that we do gather by the fire.  Yesterday a visit to the dentist, all clear thank goodness, the sound of the drill in another room made my stomach turn over!
The other day Weaver of Grass (Pat) had problems with which charity to give to. I am not sure on this, I suggested the 'White Helmets' of Syria who do a much needed job of rescuing the wounded from the buildings that have been bombed.  A volunteer group of Syrian people seemed right.
But it made me remember last weekend when we were watching Peter Pan, and my daughter seemed very knowledgeable on the story of J.M. Barrie, she revealed that actually she had the Wiki entry on her phone.  Well said I, thank goodness I gave a donation the other week to Wikipedia, it is a non-profit organisation and educates people all round the world. 
It is difficult to choose a charity at Xmas, we are beset on all sides for pleas for money.  Home charity is the 'Salvation Army' or 'Shelter' of course for taking the homeless of the street but do they do it all the year.
Medecins Sans Frontieres is of course another one, as is the Red Cross or Save The Children.  Whatever their are plenty out there and don't get me started on animal charities, pictures of ill abused animals are there to set your heart off, as are of course the terrible pictures of children suffering.  Should we feel guilt? the answer is of course yes, but perhaps also we should be nagging our governments as well, after all they have the biggest pots of money.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

22nd December

"What is he who dreaming sees, and after 'dreaming the imprinted passion Remains, and to his mind the rest returns not, such am I, for almost utterly Ceases my vision, and even distills my heart the sweetness born of it."
- Dante, Paradiso, Canto XXXIII

Qual e’ colui che somniando vede, che dopo ‘l sogno la passione impressa rimane, e l’altro a la mente non riede, cotal son io

For Littlestone, who has nagged so much for me to take photos of the restaurant! And also Pat, thank you for the Solistice poem, LS also put one up as well for the Solstice, a Seamus Heaney one, Heaney of course did an archaeological course in Ireland.




Lunch out yesterday, LS's birthday treat at The Plough Inn at Wombleton.  What does he have? the same as always, tempura prawns with a salad and a side bowl of fries, me I try the cashew nut/fruit curry, good though rather sweet, Lucy shared my poppadum.  We have to lunch in the bar above with Lucy but I have now taken photos of the restaurant bit, rather empty yesterday.  There are a few pubs like this round the area, gastro-pubs I suppose they are called, the girl who served us spoke highly of our pub  the Sun Inn next door and was going with her boyfriend for New Year.  It has quite a reputation the Sun Inn, serving massive meals for the locals, who will of course include farmers and putting on 'events', all run by Harriet, under 25 years old, Lucy, 16 years old and still at school, and William their brother who helps out. Gastro it may not be but their pies are greatly sought out ;)


The Wombles of Wombleton

Inner dining room

the other end