Cool Britannia (sort of): the British thread 2019

1515254565786

Comments

  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    I have been waiting for the rain. It has been seriously dark and louring since mid afternoon. There has been some thunder and a couple of pulses of rain, but not the cathartic, tarmac-bouncing, gutter-flooding downpour needed.
  • Ooooh, that sounded gorgeous!
  • AravisAravis Shipmate
    I was on the M5 somewhere between Bristol and Taunton shortly after 1pm and my car thermometer said it was 35 degrees. It certainly felt like it after the traffic took over an hour to move two miles, as the air conditioning has stopped working again (it’s quite an elderly car). I was disgustingly sweaty when I finally reached Exeter at 3pm.
    One thing to be thankful for, however; I’d agreed to give my 80 year old neighbour a lift to Exeter to see her grandson, but a couple of days ago she decided she didn’t want to go after all. I’m not sure she would have coped with an hour’s traffic jam in that heat!
  • DooneDoone Shipmate
    Aravis wrote: »
    I was on the M5 somewhere between Bristol and Taunton shortly after 1pm and my car thermometer said it was 35 degrees. It certainly felt like it after the traffic took over an hour to move two miles, as the air conditioning has stopped working again (it’s quite an elderly car). I was disgustingly sweaty when I finally reached Exeter at 3pm.
    One thing to be thankful for, however; I’d agreed to give my 80 year old neighbour a lift to Exeter to see her grandson, but a couple of days ago she decided she didn’t want to go after all. I’m not sure she would have coped with an hour’s traffic jam in that heat!

    Phew! Amazingly it’s dropped to 20C here now - lovely!
  • DormouseDormouse Shipmate
    Not sure how hot it got here today - I would guess low 40s. I've been indoors, shutters and windows closed, making cards to sell at church, to raise money for Phone credit for Refugees, an excellent tiny charity I support. I did have to do some baking though - the Bishop is coming to Clermont tomorrow, and we're having a finger food pot luck after the service. I made sausage rolls and vegetarian pizza parcels. The kitchen got hot.
  • PriscillaPriscilla Shipmate
    We returned from the FSW this afternoon. Penzance was 18C, journeying up the A30, it dropped down to 16C crossing Bodmin moor in the fog, but rose to 24C when we stopped at Cullompton services on the motorway. We got home at 6, and our part of the Valleys was a manageable 20C.
    Thank heavens for car air Conditioning!
  • CathscatsCathscats Shipmate
    Thunderstorm! Hail! Torrents! Lightning flashes! Cats cowering in a corner 🙁 And now all clear and smelling heavenly, mainly of honeysuckle.
  • Managed to remain reasonably cool by leaving the garden by 07:30 (having gone out to pick blackcurrants and rhubarb early, before they got zapped by the heat), and remaining indoors for the rest of the day.
    Careful manipulation of doors, windows and curtains on the variously sunny and shady sides of the house kept the temperature indoors all day to within a few degrees of the 23C it was at 06:30.
    We are in a bungalow, meaning no open windows at night :( so sleeping will still be difficult, but I am looking forward to a fresher morning.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited June 2019
    The sole advantage of having a lot of Wee Bitey Things™ is that most windows are fitted with fly screens, so it's all right to keep them open at night, which we do if it's not expected to go below about 14° .

    Pâté and red pepper jelly both made; after a disaster with the first batch of breadsticks (despite my following the recipe to the letter, they burned - they looked lovely on top but were as black as the ace of spades underneath), a second batch is now rising, and will be baked forthwith.

    Had a disappointing trip to the farmers' market this morning: I'd intended to get some Château de Bourgogne from the cheese shop, but they didn't have any :cry: so I made do with some German Brie and a big lump of Caerphilly for one of the cheeseboards.

    Dusting and hoovering have happened, and some rearrangement of furniture.

    I'm getting there - once the breadsticks are done, I won't need to do any more actual cooking, just a bit of setting things out on boards, baskets and platters.

    It's forecast to be a little cooler tomorrow - 18° with a chance of thunder showers - which will be a bit more comfortable while I'm flapping around like a headless chicken!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Breadstick update: I've just taken them out of the oven and they look fine. :smile:
  • I was in London yesterday, at the V&A with a group of friends, for the Mary Quant exhibition. How very reminiscent those clothes were, though they had actually been around for longer than I remembered! The courtyard at the V&A was lovely, with loads of small children playing in the pool, and we met - quite by chance - the family of one of the aforementioned friends, who were there for the Christian Dior exhibition. Appropriately, that cost twice as much as the Quant one!

    It was steaming hot and the tunnel to the Tube station was closed (why?) but the train back to the Deep Dark Forest was like a freezer - they had the aircon cranked up to max,and by the time I reached Gloucester half an hour late I was absolutely chilled to the bone <brrrrrr> Didn't last long though...

  • There's a free dress pattern available from that Quant exhibition. I've downloaded it and keep looking at, wondering if I'd ever wear it. Or if it would fit (as I'm currently using teenage boys' patterns as a starting point as the best fit I can find).

    The tubes weren't great yesterday, severe delays on the Central Line due to speed limits due to the heat, Overground out of order, various other problems. I went out with Yangtze last night to see one of her friends singing in a concert of Rossini's Petite Messe Solennelle, I know another of the singers and the conductor/musical director, and she had an interesting time on tube. It was interesting as this is a very good amateur choir and they used Robin Horgan to sing the tenor Domine Deus solo, and neither Yangtze nor I liked his voice as much as the amateurs.
  • That reminds me, I have a tea dress pattern kit at home which has a Peter Pan collar and I’m now wondering if I can make a more a line version as well. I might make the original this week.
  • It's (finally!) cooling down here. 29 today and 26 tomorrow.

    Yesterday evening went to the Opera to see Don Giovanni, which was my Christmas present a long time ago. The voices were fabulous, although we were a bit nonplussed by the minimalist staging. However they did provide a most satisfactory descent into hell using projectors to create the arms of the damned pulling the Don down to his just desserts.

    It made a very nice change from packing boxes. It was also air-conditioned 😊
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Down to 29° - eek! Our temperature is forecast to go up to 29° on Friday, and to say I'm not looking forward to it would be a woeful understatement.
    The party went off very well - although there were about 20 plus D. and me in a not awfully big house, it really didn't feel too crowded as we all milled between the kitchen and sitting-room. There was loads of food - it was a finger-food pot-luck - so I don't think we'll have to cook for ages! Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, so I hope it'll be something we can do again.

    The weather wasn't quite obliging enough that we could spill out on to the deck (it was a bit blusterous), but by the time people were starting to leave, it was quite nice, and the view showed itself off nicely.

    Anyone remember KenWritez's Pie Quotient? I think the principle could be extended to apply to wine after a party, and in this instance we've come out in credit - there seems to be a decent amount of white wine in the fridge, plus a bottle of posh sparkling cider ... :mrgreen:
  • caroline444caroline444 Shipmate
    edited July 2019
    @The Intrepid Mrs S and @Curiosity killed

    Anyone who braved the London Underground this week to get to an exhibition or concert deserved a right royal treat at the end of their journey The Quant exhibition sounds a lot of fun, and what a nice twist that they've made a pattern available.

    @la vie en rouge An opera house with air con sounds wonderfully civilized.

    @Piglet So glad your party went well, plus you were left with some welcome goodies!
  • @Piglet, if you're not too keen on CIDER, I'll find a suitable home for it. No, don't thank me - I'm just happy to oblige!
    :grin:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Virtual cider on its way, BF! I don’t dislike cider - it's just not something that occurs to me very often - and I'm reminded that my very first hangover was courtesy of some Autumn Gold (I know, I know - serves me right for drinking rubbish cider). I'm rather looking forward to trying this one though - I think it might be rather different from any cider I've had before.

    We had a feast of leftovers for lunch: spinach squares, cheese, bread, pâté, tomatoes and chocolate CAKE.

    It's Canada Day today, and nowhere's open, so we're vegging out on the sofa - D's pretending to watch Lord of the Rings (zzzzz) but is actually asleep (also zzzzz).

    We'll go in to town later for the fireworks.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    Happy Canada Day to Piglet with this - starts at 26'09"! :smile:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited July 2019
    Thanks, Wesley - how am I supposed to unsee that picture of Stephen Harper??? :astonished:

    Just back from the fireworks; they maybe weren't quite as impressive as some years, but good all the same, and it was a perfect night for them - 15°, dry and with hardly any wind. It was nice to be part of the crowd on the walking-bridge enjoying the display.
  • Not got much planned today, I have a few odd jobs to do on the computer and then I might do some dressmaking. I might also try my hand at spinning some cotton on my spindle.
    My youngest has a school trip to the Royal Society exhibition (a scientist father of an ex-pupil sponsors a trip every year) and he was pleased to see in the school literature that one of the stalls was one he was working on at his work experience job in trade show design.
  • I’faith, it raineth never save it poureth.

    To my extreme surprise, the Prefecture of Police has been quite quick with my application for French nationality, and called the Other Half and me in for an interview to prove we’re not in a sham marriage (I need that old rolling eyes smiley). And it falls on the same day we are supposed to be doing the inventory of the old chez rouge, because of course it does.

    They also want even more papers despite me having already sent them a stack an inch high. Including Captain Pyjamas’ vaccination certificates, for some reason. I guess they think being an anti-vaxxer is proof of anti-republican values.

    On the upside, their relatively speedy dealing with my file means I am pretty certain to be in possession of a French passport before the Brexit proverbial properly hits the fan.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    That’s great news @la vie en rouge .

    I am very relieved Boogielet1 and his partner have their German citizenship sorted before the nonsense begins.
  • Great news! @la vie en rouge
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    in just Paris o(
    I’faith, it raineth never save it poureth.

    To my extreme surprise, the Prefecture of Police has been quite quick with my application for French nationality, and called the Other Half and me in for an interview to prove we’re not in a sham marriage (I need that old rolling eyes smiley). And it falls on the same day we are supposed to be doing the inventory of the old chez rouge, because of course it does.

    They also want even more papers despite me having already sent them a stack an inch high. Including Captain Pyjamas’ vaccination certificates, for some reason. I guess they think being an anti-vaxxer is proof of anti-republican values.

    On the upside, their relatively speedy dealing with my file means I am pretty certain to be in possession of a French passport before the Brexit proverbial properly hits the fan.

    Brother and s-i-l moved near Carcassonne nearly three years and they are finding the French authorities thorough but helpful. S-i-l speaks social French, not Official French, but brother is competent and organised (he's basically an environmental lawyer, so he can handle red tape).

    They have lived in Australia and Swaziland, so I don't think heat is generally a problem, but 45c is stay indoors and don't do much weather.
  • I’m not surprised they’re finding the local authorities helpful. AFAICT, the French are considerably better prepared for Brexit than the British are. But that’s a subject for another place.

    Off to find the extra papers (which are now in a packing box which we’re going to have to reopen, sigh). For once I wish the French public servants could have been their usual painfully slow selves and not done anything until they got back from the beach in September.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    It must be a passporty sort of day - D's new (British) passport arrived today. Still pink, but with no mention of the European Union on it. :cry:

    Once we can afford it (if Dad's house sells), we're going to apply for Canadian citizenship - you can hold both.

    It's our wedding anniversary today (31 happy, wonderful years!), and we're going out fo dinner later. We'd intended to try a newish place that might be a bit posh for everyday eating-out, but they're closed to give their staff an extra night off after the Canada Day weekend*, so we're going to the Back Six, a restaurant at a golf club not far from the house.

    * I don't begrudge them - holiday entitlement here ranges from non-existent to woeful.
  • Happy anniversary! I'm trying to work out how piglet of menny hapy reterns fame would spell that 😋

    How much does it cost to apply for Canadian nationality? Clearly the €55 I paid here was more of a bargain than I realised.
  • Congratulations, Piglet and D.!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    ... How much does it cost to apply for Canadian nationality? Clearly the €55 I paid here was more of a bargain than I realised.
    I should say it was! I've just looked it up, and it appears to be $630 (about £380 or €425) each. That's quite a chunk of dosh to be parting with in one go (although small potatoes compared to what we'll be spending to go home in August for my niece's wedding).
    We had a v. nice dinner at the Back Six - we shared a tomato and fried halloumi salad, then I had duck with green beans and carrots, and D. had very decent fish and chips. For pudding we both had crème brûlée, and the whole thing was very nice indeed.

    Just as we got in, we started hearing rumblements, and there followed a really rather good thunderstorm. Sadly, for the rest of the week, we're getting temperatures in the high 20s and low 30s, probably with Humidex values off the scale ... :flushed:
  • Congratulation, piglet and D.
    A dull day expected here, I really need to get into a routine now term has finished. So I’m going to turn my work computer on and do some literature searches on models of disability with the aim of writing about them on my university blog. I don’t find writing easy so it’ll be good practice for me.
    Weather still much of a muchness here, around 20 and overcast with sunny spells.
  • MiffyMiffy Shipmate
    Well- I’m back in Blighty and appreciating the lower temperatures after the stay in sunny France, where my routine was basically: go out in the morning, come back, eat, sleep, dip self in pool, eat, sleep. Temps of 38c plus and my tendency to headaches don’t sit well together! Son- who was at a wedding in the SE of the country last weekend, is equally thankful to get home; he’s like me, his Scottish blood can’t cope easily with temps like 41c; I bet you none of the guests were in morning dress!
  • kingsfoldkingsfold Shipmate
    Piglet wrote: »
    ... How much does it cost to apply for Canadian nationality? Clearly the €55 I paid here was more of a bargain than I realised.
    I should say it was! I've just looked it up, and it appears to be $630 (about £380 or €425) each. That's quite a chunk of dosh to be parting with in one go (although small potatoes compared to what we'll be spending to go home in August for my niece's wedding).

    And $630 (about £380 or €425) is a bargain compared with getting British Nationality. A friend of mine has just got hers, and as I recall the cost was nearer to £1200 (ca $1509 (US)or €1330)....
  • That’s outrageous. Do they give your money back if they reject your application? They bloody ought to at that price.
  • O come now - only £1200 to become a citizen of This Great Nation? Cheap at twice the price - think of the Privileges! Think of the Benefits!
    :grimace:
  • Just got back from a lovely evening listening to a Senegalese band in the botanic gardens. It was a last minute decision to go so I cooked tea (garlicky roast potatoes with onions, peppers and chicken), gave the boys theirs and threw our portion into some Tupperware to picnic on, with gin and tonic in a flask.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Took a friend to the Malleny Garden so that we could see the collection of old roses in bloom. They are much smaller and untidier than the modern varieties, but otoh daintier, more scented, and possessed of a fragile charm.
  • PuzzlerPuzzler Shipmate
    Today I confess to being unable to remain my usual Kind and Patient Self with a client. Given a full to overflowing waiting room at CAB, I tried to persuade this Serial Complainer about All who Have Dealings With Her to compose a letter herself, based on one of our useful templates. She was having none of it and asked to speak to my Manager. He was really busy, so to save his time ( sic) I drafted her letter. She was pleased with it, so job done, but what a contrast to our usual clientele who are enormously grateful, apologetic for taking up our time ( we exist for no other purpose!) and really deserving of all the help we can give them. Rant over.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Firenze wrote: »
    Took a friend to the Malleny Garden so that we could see the collection of old roses in bloom ...
    My sister lives just along the road from Malleny House; we've driven past the entrance times without number, but never gone in. As we're going to have a few days in Embra when we're over next month, maybe we ought to give it a look (although our National Trust membership lapsed many moons ago).

    Just back from a wee jaunt down to Harvey, where the intention was to have coffee and PIE, but D. decided he fancied SOUP, so he had that and I had "frings" - fries and onion rings. It was all very nice, but once we'd eaten that, there was no room for any PIE.

    As the chips had made me very thirsty, when we got in D. built me a GIN and tonic - cheers! :smiley:
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    It’s an unstaffed property - and a small one (half an hour’s worth say) - so there’s no one on hand to check your membership (there’s probably an honesty box somewhere if you feel really guilt-ridden).

    Otoh, if you have only a couple of days there’s doubtless a stack of other stuff to do.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    I am deeply impressed by Heavenlyannie's commitment to period clothing, and have just found this article from The Grauniad, entitled 'I don’t see jeans in my future’: the people who wear complete historical dress – every day'. :)

    It's so heartwarming, and cool at the same time! :)
  • FredegundFredegund Shipmate
    I love that link :)
    I do have a lot of sort-of-Bohemian stuff, courtesy of a lovely shop in Leiden, but I don't wear it consistently. It wouldn't survive our garden.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Anyone interested in period clothing must catch A Stitch in Time on BBC with (the immensely striking) Amber Butchart. It's not available at the moment, but is worth looking for.
  • DooneDoone Shipmate
    Yes, a very interesting programme!
  • Wesley J wrote: »
    I am deeply impressed by Heavenlyannie's commitment to period clothing, and have just found this article from The Grauniad, entitled 'I don’t see jeans in my future’: the people who wear complete historical dress – every day'. :)

    It's so heartwarming, and cool at the same time! :)
    We were discussing a previous BBC article on the young Georgian man while we were at Kentwell; he is beautifully clothed. I am yet to swan around the council estate we live on in Tudor dress (though locals have seen us in our costumes as we drive to Manor in our gear) but we do occasionally pop into shops on route and have to remember to remove our knives from our belts. I see the occasional Tudor in Cambridge on a bicycle going to their re-enactment day job.

    I once went to a busy Thai pub restaurant for dinner dressed in 1860s clothes after re-enacting, full crinoline and bonnet, and nobody said a word! I’ve also turned up to a Christmas party in those clothes as I went directly there after a re-enactment.

    However, I do wear full flowing early 1970s Laura Ashley maxi dresses as ordinary daily wear as I collect them. If anyone goes to Greenbelt I’m very easy to spot.
  • @Wesley J Great article, and I enjoyed the video too. Wonderful that the young man shown has been able to make a living from his passion.

    @sionisais I thoroughly enjoyed A Stitch in Time too - and yes, Amber Butchart is striking - she presents herself with such individuality and flair. I hope we get more of those programmes at some stage.
  • I know one of the costumiers featured on A Stitch in Time, she is a Kentwellie and writes books on Tudor costume.
  • I love vintage – especially the 50s and the 80s (which sort of recycled the 50s). I have some fabulous frocks, especially a couple of very froofy outrageous party dresses from the 80s. But I don’t think I could carry it off every day.

    My wedding dress was made (by my Mum) from an original 50s pattern and it was an education in how much clothing shapes have changed in the meantime. It was designed to be worn with some very constricting undergarments, and despite me being hourglass-shaped, it was far too small in the waist. It required considerable alteration before it was anything like wearable. Fortunately my best friend is a professional fashionista/pattern-cutter and helped change the pattern or I don’t think I could have worn it at all.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    I love vintage – especially the 50s and the 80s (which sort of recycled the 50s). I have some fabulous frocks, especially a couple of very froofy outrageous party dresses from the 80s. But I don’t think I could carry it off every day.

    My wedding dress was made (by my Mum) from an original 50s pattern and it was an education in how much clothing shapes have changed in the meantime. It was designed to be worn with some very constricting undergarments, and despite me being hourglass-shaped, it was far too small in the waist. It required considerable alteration before it was anything like wearable. Fortunately my best friend is a professional fashionista/pattern-cutter and helped change the pattern or I don’t think I could have worn it at all.

    A few years ago Mrs Sioni and I went to the American Museum just outside Bath*. There was a Marilyn Monroe exhibition and I am sure some of the costumes she had to squeeze into contributed to her unhappiness. Women suffered in those days.

    *Can't recommend it too highly. Caught a Kaffe Fassett exhibition next time.
  • You must have looked wonderful, lver. I love a 1950s dress.

    We had a Georgian wedding, I had an empire line soft satin dress in ivory and pale gold and my husband made a pair of wool breeches with a front flap which he wore with a wonderful high necked waistcoat (similar style to the man in the article) and tails.

    Yes, it’s amazing how fashions have involved changing a woman’s shape, and occasionally a man’s (Victorian men sometimes wore corsets and Elizabethan men had doublets with wool stuffed peascod bellies overhanging their puffed breeches). I wear different corsets according to the historical period: Tudor requires a conical underbodice structured with reeds, my 1860s dress has an hourglass corset from a repro mid Victorian pattern, as well as a walking crinoline and wool filled bodice, and for WW1 I adapted a Georgian pattern for a soft corded corset into a Jaegar style hygienic corset (my nurse does not approve of tight corsets but most of the other women have long line ones which are very uncomfortable).
    Walking in the crinoline is amazing, it feels wonderful swaying as you walk!
This discussion has been closed.