AS: Cool Britannia (sort of): the British thread 2019



  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    That is indeed fortunate, BF - lots of churches these days seem to lurch from one financial crisis to the next, and having to do major work like that would send them into a complete tailspin.
    I woke up to a world rather whiter than I'd like this morning - we got a few inches of sn*w and freezing rain last night - and groaned at the prospect of shovelling it. Imagine my delight when I looked out at the front of the house and saw that some dear, kind soul had ploughed the drive and a bit of the path, so all I had to do was clear a bit of the deck, the steps and the rest of the path, which took me no more than about a quarter of an hour.

    I have some wonderful neighbours.
  • How kind, Piglet
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    Was it the ones you sold the snow blower to?
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    No - it was the bloke next door to her. He's been known to do our drive after his own before; I suppose today it looked more obvious because there's no car there any more.

    I think he quite enjoys exercising his snow-blower, but I still think he deserves a knighthood. Or perhaps canonisation. :smiley:
    It's possible one of the couples who looked at the château yesterday might be interested: they're apparently visiting their bank ...
  • Piglet wrote: »
    It's possible one of the couples who looked at the château yesterday might be interested: they're apparently visiting their bank ...
    If owls had fingers, I'd cross mine.
  • @Piglet hoping and praying.
  • Oh Piglet, I hope it means a sensible offer - wouldn't that make a wonderful early Christmas present!
  • DooneDoone Shipmate
    Truly hope so Piglet 🕯!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Thanks, all!

    I'm off shortly to the travel agent to book my flights to Scotland; my efforts with Skyscanner, Expedia and whatnot were somewhat fruitless. The only flights available seemed to involve either very long waits 11 hours) between flights or not long enough (a couple of hours at Heathrow when I don't know if I have to change terminals). When I did finally hit on one that would do, the bloody thing wouldn't accept my debit card (see TICTH thread).

    I hope the travel agent can do a bit better!
    It's a glorious, sunny day (7°) so maybe some of the sn*w will Go Away.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Tickets now booked!! <yipee!> :smiley:

    Interesting itinerary - Fredericton - Toronto - Dublin - Glasgow on the way out, and Glasgow - London - Montreal - Fredericton on the way back, but no horrendously long stops, and none that are too short to be useful either.

    I'm beginning to get excited ... :)
  • Great news, Piglet!

    Now, I'll keep my wings crossed that your luck holds out with the house sale.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Thanks, Pigwidgeon!

    Now I must start getting organised for going away: I need to make sure there's someone to clear the sn*w that will inevitably accumulate (ugh!) and someone to check the place every so often to make sure pipes aren't frozen and that sort of thing.

    Not to mention packing ... :flushed:
  • Ugh - the P-word! The worst bit about holidays (except perhaps for the hanging-about-in-airports-which-could-be-anywhere-on-the-planet).

    Might your estate agent be able to recommend a house-minding service, if kind neighbours are not to be had?
  • @piglet that sounds a crazy itinerary! Regarding the advent arches, do you use timers or do you leave them on all the time? I have one for each of the upstairs windows and use a timer because the light stops me sleeping. But when I was in Norway during advent I noticed everyone had theirs lit all the time (well, all the time I noticed! I wasn’t looking in the wee small hours)
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I actually don't mind packing - it's all part of the anticipation! It was always my job when D. was alive*, and I even used to iron his shirts before packing them - it seemed to make the suitcase look neater and hold more. I wouldn't bother with my own, as most of them don't need ironing at all.

    As for the candle bridges, I imagine they'll be safe enough staying lit all the time - they're not very high wattage. I've asked the lady across the road if she'll take a house key and keep an eye on the place, and I wouldn't be surprised if someone from the choir offers to do the same.

    * I'm reminded of one occasion when I forgot to pack his pyjamas - he was Not Pleased. :mrgreen:
  • That reminds me of a trip to Italy about 25 years ago, where my husband’s pyjamas accidentally got removed when our sheets were changed, and I had to explain this to the hotel staff in Italian. It is still one of the few Italian sentences I know!
    (Our rule on holiday is that we each pack our own clothes, but he does the driving when abroad, and I communicate in whatever language is necessary. )
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I haven't even begun to contemplate packing yet - that's a task for next Wednesday. :mrgreen:

    I have, however, had to do some shovelling - the "2 to 4 cm" of sn*w we were promised last night and this morning was more like 4 inches. Part of the deck and all of the path are now clear enough to make walking safe; the drive can wait - it's not as if I have to get a car out of it.

    It's not likely to go anywhere though - forecast temperatures for the next few days are all in minus numbers, so I suspect it's here to stay.

    I hope Edinburgh doesn't get an Arctic blast when I'm over - I'm really looking forward to not having to struggle into boots, scarves, gloves and coats every time I go outdoors!

  • We pack our own stuff but one time we were going away I grabbed the shoes and put them in the car.

    Drove two hours to go to a wedding.

    Realised in the morning that I’d packed one of two different pairs of black shoes for Mr F.
  • Was booked at a church to "preach with a view". We decided to combine the trip with a visit to my mother. On arrival at her house I carefully took out my suit and hung it in the bedroom to avoid creasing.

    On Sunday morning we left early ... of course, it was only when we were 50 miles away that I realised the suit was still hanging in the bedroom and I was still wearing my tatty Saturday trousers!

    Fortunately the church liked their Minister to wear a gown, so one was lent!
  • Your anecdote rather implies, BT, that you did not remove your tatty Saturday trousers overnight, but I'm sure that can't be True.

    Incidentally, I have tatty Monday-to-Saturday trousers, one for each day. Matching tatty pullovers, as well - my family is not noted for its Sartorial Elegance (except for Cousin S, who is A Nactor).
  • Hope all my fellow Shipmates in London are okay and not near London Bridge right now.
  • Bishops FingerBishops Finger Shipmate
    edited November 2019
    For those who haven't heard, latest from BBC News:

    Breaking news/ongoing situation, as they say.

  • Your anecdote rather implies, BT, that you did not remove your tatty Saturday trousers overnight, but I'm sure that can't be True.
    No, I unthinkingly put them back on on Sunday.

  • :lol:

    I hoped that was the case - but see how useful Liturgical Vestments can be... :wink:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Quite so - cassocks and surplices cover a Multitude of Sins.
    I've had a rather nice day (apart from going base-over-apex on a patch of ice at the foot of the drive).

    A former organ student of D's and his wife came and picked me up this morning and we went to the Cathedral so that he could collect what he wanted of D's organ music - I can't think of anyone else who D. would rather leave it to. And I managed not to get weepy when I saw D's handwriting on the copies.*

    We then had a v. nice lunch in a local restaurant and a very jolly time.

    * but failed miserably when I opened a letter from a friend in Belfast enclosing a copy of the Belfast Cathedral newsletter with an obituary in it ... :cry:
  • I read that at the time and I thought it was a perfect, pithy tribute.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    It was indeed.
  • I thought that my time in the scouts would be my last spending nights under canvas. But no.

    The roofers came yesterday and took half our roof away. Two weeks ago in heavy rain, the lighting circuit in the house was taken out, water dripped from a light fitting, so it is new roof time. Only half the roof, the other half will have to wait until we've saved a few more pennies.

    The temporary roof is not doing a good job of keeping heat in and there is a good layer of frost this morning.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    edited November 2019
    Goodness @balaam, that’s hard in the cold and frost. :astonished:

    Today we have the whole family coming round. It’s our Christmas get-together as we are in Heidelberg from the 10th December until New Year. All their presents and cards are ready.

    So I must get off this iPad now and clean the nose art off the windows! :lol:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Crikey, Balaam - you could do without that at this time of year!

    Apart from doing a spot of laundry, I've had a very lazy day today; I'll make up for it tomorrow as we've got two services - the usual in the morning and the Advent Procession in the afternoon.

  • Third fine day in a row.
    On the first two I managed to get some tidying done in the garden, and today got a line full of washing almost completely dry. Another dry, bright day forecast for tomorrow, so I will try and get a load washed and pegged out before we go to church.

    That still feels a bit naughty, but weather suitable for drying washing come along quite rarely at this time of year, so I grab the chance while I can.
  • We had a lovely day on Saturday - Mr S and I, Miss S, SiL and the grandsons drove to Cardiff (in separate cars - what a pain that is now!) to spend the day with Master S, DiL and the little Welsh cousin. We all went to see Dippy at the museum, which was completely wondrous* as there was lots of other dinosaur-type stuff for The Intrepid Grandson Mk I to look at, and the babies just loved looking at one another and waving their arms and smiling.

    Master S said afterwards that he couldn't decide which was the best moment of the day - the look on TIG's face as he saw Dippy for the first time, or the view of him chasing his Grandpa with a sequinned colour-changing diplodocus afterwards! (and that's not a phrase I ever envisaged myself penning before now)

    Mrs. S, happy :heart:
  • @Roseofsharon if I were to put out washing these last few days it would have frozen solid. Never above freezing and -10C at nights. But glorious and crisp. We had a lovely walk in the hills yesterday and saw and heard the Capercaillie on all sides. Privileged.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    It's an absolutely glorious day here: currently -5° and not a cloud in the sky. There is, however, a special weather statement on Environment Canada's web-site promising rather a lot of sn*w on Tuesday and Wednesday. :cry:

    Never mind - Advent Procession this afternoon, and before that, I think a bit of what a Facebook friend calls a "snoozette". :sleepy:
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Strictly that should be 'bijou snoozette'.

    Temperature barely above freezing all day here. We've had to drive up to Perthshire: Trossachs very beautiful - while visible - sun begins setting by 2.30, dark by 4.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    There's a little bit of me that's looking forward to the really short days - I'm definitely a hyperborealian piglet!

    I must stop messing about on here: there's someone coming to look at the house in about an hour and a friend's coming to pick me up and get me off-side shortly.

    Trotters crossed ... :)
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    The house viewing yesterday seemed quite positive - they asked for a copy of the estate regulations and whether the lawnmower was included in the sale.
    In other news, it's a filthy day. There's been freezing rain/ice pellets off and on since early morning, and now it's snowing, and due to continue until early evening - if we end up with less than a foot I'll be surprised.

    I'm supposed to be going to supper with friends this evening, but as they live at the foot of a long, quite steep drive, I shouldn't blame them if they were to call it off.

    I hate snow. :(
  • Freezing rain is worse. On Sunday night it froze on the trees around us and took down a huge bough of an old spruce that had been planted to celebrate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. This took down our electricity supply cable, which took down the mast attached to the house along with a piece of the roof. I was very irritated. My dear wife is not a worrier, as in, "Oh, just get the candles out!" It's not quite two years since we were attacked from the other side when the river rose with the express intention of writing off our car and nobody else's. For the first time in my life, however, I can say we've - so far - had exemplary support from our insurance company, and things are already looking better, with the electricity back and the roof temporarily sealed up.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    That's a total bummer, ST - and you're right about freezing rain - it comes straight from Hell.

    Our weather yesterday didn't turn out quite as badly as it might have done: by early afternoon it had pretty much stopped precipitating*, and when I went out to clear the deck and path, the snow was really quite light and fluffy, so it didn't take me that long. I've arranged for a bloke from the estate office to come and clear the snow when I'm away, and he did the drive last night as well.

    My friends didn't cancel, and we had a very jolly evening, with excellent food (and many cuddles from their cute wee dog). :)

    * having threatened to continue until late evening
    Hair has been cut, packing has commenced (sort of), and laundry is in progress.

    I might just be organised by the time my flight goes tomorrow afternoon, assuming my suitcase can accommodate sufficient winter clothes for a five-week holiday.
  • Presumably though you'll be able to at least wash some of them during your exile?
  • Safe travels @Piglet :heart:
  • Hope you have a good journey @Piglet. I'd have thought not being able to pack enough winter clothes would be a good excuse for a bit of retail therapy.
  • DooneDoone Shipmate
    Safe journey Piglet!
  • All the very best for your trip, piglet!

    Goodness me it’s cold here. The local news (via fb) reports that a homeless man has been found dead in a local churchyard this morning. The temperature was subzero last night. It’s so desperately sad. There are many homeless people on the streets of the town these days - many more than in previous years.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Thanks for the good wishes, everyone! I'm currently sitting on possibly the most uncomfortable chair on the planet in the Aer Lingus departure lounge at Dublin Airport waiting for my flight to Glasgow.

    Flights so far, so good - at least we got a proper drink and a decent meal on the transatlantic flight, which was sufficiently empty that I got two seats to myself. I didn't really sleep properly though - just sort of dozed for an hour or two.

    Looking forward to seeing the Edinburgh mob, and having some Quality Bear Time*, i.e. a nap.

    * I never pack my suitcase without a Small Bear for soporific purposes. :)
  • Very wise (the Soporific Bear, I mean)!

    Best wishes to you from all Shipmates, I'm sure. We do understand that in many ways this will be a difficult Christmas for you, but with friends, and family, to help out...hopefully, the trip will go well.

  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    edited December 2019
    Speaking of bears-

    When I was a child I didn’t have dolls, I had teddies. One special teddy called ‘Oldie’. My brother had an Oldie too and we both had a Newie. We played for hours with them using a special language known only to us called ‘Teddy Talk’.

    My Oldie is still with me but we thought my brother’s had long gone.

    My brother’s daughter has got back in touch after 20 years and she has the other Oldie! I had a little weep when I met him again 💕

    Here they are. My Mum knitted the clothes. :heart:

  • That is lovely @Boogie . My brother still has his bear, which my grandmother made a pair of trousers for. I had a much loved rabbit, that my mum 'disappeared' when it became too disreputable. Not sure that I've ever forgiven her.
    Hope you are having a lovely time with your family in Edinburgh @Piglet, and that the last leg of your journey was trouble free.
  • Have a lovely time Piglet 🙃❤️🙃
  • la vie en rougela vie en rouge Circus Host, 8th Day Host
    I want a sympathy trip. After resolutely refusing to eat anything I offered him all day, Captain Pyjamas ate like a champ when husband en rouge came home. And then was sick all over me.

    Oh the joys of motherhood. 👼
This discussion has been closed.