The Untied Kingdom? - the British thread 2021

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  • SarasaSarasa Shipmate
    Warm here, but rain forecast for tomorrow. A bit of a lazy day, apart from a stroll into town to have a hair cut. My best friend was supposed to be visiting tomorrow and I was really looking forward to it, but she's cancelled as she is feeling dire. Hopefully we can re-schedule for later in the summer. Friend cancelling does mean I can accompany my husband on a couple of visits to possible care homes for his mum. He's suggesting a picnic between visits, but sounds nice apart from the fore mentioned rain.
    Good luck with the scary piece of work @Heavenlyannie. Sometimes conflict is necessary.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    @Firenze - the app that came with my mobile, Accu Weather, has been rabbiting about rain and thunder warnings for a day or two, but there doesn't seem to be any sign of either yet.

    It was certainly very warm in Embra; I was expecting a rush of heat when I got off the (shiveringly air-conditioned) train in Linlithgow, but it wasn't as bad as I expected - there was a slight breeze that made it almost comfortable.

    Supper was a piece of quiche, a slice of roast beef and some salad, followed by some CHEESE.
  • Tea here was a very simple shop bought steak pie, with a side order of mushrooms in cream.
  • Ethne AlbaEthne Alba Shipmate
    Sea-mist here, almost until midday and we have not seen a sunset (beautiful or otherwise) for two days now.

    An early slow cooked turkey for lunch started my day and a rich glass of red is finishing it.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    Sea-mist? Oh, how I miss the sea, I really do. While we wait, here's a funny little tune called 'Sea Monsters' from late 1970s Prog Rock which I happened to come across. (The whole album is quite soothing, I find, but you may beg to differ.)

    Weather still very mixed here, but at least maximum 23 or 24°C, which is not unpleasant.
  • Baptist TrainfanBaptist Trainfan Shipmate
    edited July 27
    It wetteth. Rain downfalleth. Glad I cut the lawn yesterday.
  • We still haven’t had any of the rain or thunder promised in the last few days. It’s predicting a little drizzle this afternoon.
    Off for my walk soon and then I might sit and read in the garden. This afternoon I will do some pickling of courgettes.
  • SarasaSarasa Shipmate
    We've had rain, which is great as we haven't had any in ages. Shame we forgot to put the garden table and chairs away yesterday though.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    edited July 27
    Wesley J wrote: »
    Sea-mist? Oh, how I miss the sea, I really do.

    So do I! I’ve only seen it once this year and that was the Bristol Channel. We have booked for a week in Menorca in September (touch wood).
    Nenya wrote: »
    My ideal view is of rolling hills, fields and meadows.

    My brother is so lucky - they have this view from every window and can’t even see another house!

    (Cleverly edited to look like I predicted @Nenya’s words. :lol: )
  • NenyaNenya Shipmate
    We've had a very little gentle rain overnight and this morning. We need more. But not till later this afternoon as I'm having lunch with a girlfriend and seeing someone else for coffee this afternoon; I would like to do both these things outside.

    We're having bangers'n'mash for tea; I got some meat-free sausages in my delivery from Sainz Breeze and am looking forward to trying them. I am not a huge fan of sausages and one of my problems with them is the occasional crunchy bit of gristle which, if encountered, puts me off my whole meal. This shouldn't happen with meat-free ones, should it?

    I love the idea of wildflower meadows at your brother's farm, @Boogie ; I can picture them in my mind! When we talk of moving house, Mr Nen talks a lot about how he wants A View, which to him involves water. My ideal view is of rolling hills, fields and meadows. We used to live by the sea; I didn't like it at all and would never choose to again. The hurricane of 1987 didn't help, of course.
  • DormouseDormouse Shipmate
    edited July 27
    We have booked a week's hollybobs, staying in a windmill! It looks lovely, but the only thing that worries me is midnight forays down a steep flight of stairs to the loo. My knees aren't wot they used to be. Looking forward to it! A bonus is that we'll be away from our village for the annual Fete - the funfair sets up directly outside our house, so the noise can get unbearable. We used to go to stay at a friend's house for the Saturday night, but he has now moved away (damned thoughtless, I call it!)
    Pulled pork for dinner tonight. With jacket potatoes.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    edited July 27
    Like so many, waiting for the rains. Currently thick, grey, windless.

    Also waiting for grocery delivery, and to see if I have circumvented the rationing of fizzy water. When I created the order it was capped at three items, but when I revised it I appeared to be able to bump that number up. Or maybe they got more in.

    The locksmith otoh has been. Did we realise that door handle was a 100 years old? Well yes, so is the rest of the house. Coming back Friday to fit zippy new lock.

  • Returned from Cardiff yesterday, having been looking after the Little Red-haired Welsh Cousin while she struggled with both a cold and a new baby brother, to find Mr S looking vaguely distraught and one of my hanging baskets of tomatoes sitting on the floor in the courtyard. He'd watered the garden for me, and then the rain we'd been predicted arrived, so waterlogging the basket that it wrenched itself adrift from its moorings, landing with exemplary precision on a conventional tomato plant peacefully minding its own business beneath. Plastic pot was shattered, but luckily the plant wasn't badly damaged.

    Bless him, he'd still managed to cook my supper...
  • They have forecast Fire, Hail, Snow, Rain, Wind, Tempest and I know not what else for Arkland for many days now...

    ...not a drop of rain so far today, some warm sunshine, a light breeze...but Clouds are beginning to Gather.

    PIE N CHIPS N BEER for lunch, post-Pilates.
    :yum:
  • TheOrganistTheOrganist Shipmate
    Today is the last before setting out on the boat so I'm busy packing, leaving instructions for the friend who's coming to stay (they arrive in time for supper) and loading the 4x4 with gear. And watching the olympics, of course.
  • Ethne AlbaEthne Alba Shipmate
    edited July 27
    @Wesley J , great musical suggestion!

    Have been attached to either a phone or the computer since half eight and it is nearly half four. Have no idea what I have eaten today, but think it was nice .
    Going to bed now.

    Rain is still falling on our grateful garden and a pot of sweet peas is beside my bed

    Night all!
  • SarasaSarasa Shipmate
    We were out most of the day, visiting two care homes with my mother in law's future care in mind. We had a break for lunch in between, which we spent in the grounds of a stately home between the two places, having a picnic. The rain thoughtfully held off, until we'd just arrived at home number two.
    I only eat meat free sausages @Nenya and some are better than others, so experiment if those don't seem great. Drat, now I fancy toad in the hole.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    It was actually a rather nice day in the bit of north-west Embra where I earn my crusts* - and remained so (although it was getting steadily muggier) until after I got home. I've heard some distant rumblage, but there hasn't been any rain yet; I think it's due to start about 10 o'clock. To be honest, a good thunderstorm would be just what we need, to clear the air.

    I have fond memories of watching thunderstorms from our house in Fredericton, where we could see the storm making its way along the river. :heart:

    Supper (again) was beef roasted by Tessie's and salads, some made by me and some by St. Michael.

    * Ooh - that's just reminded me - tomorrow's pay day! :smiley:
  • NenyaNenya Shipmate
    We've had some nice gentle showers today. I was indoors for my lunch and my meet-up this afternoon, but we were near open doors both times so it was ok.

    The meat-free sausages were good - quite tasty and definitely no gristly bits! Mr Nen didn't make any comment so I suspect he wasn't particularly impressed. :wink: Toad in the hole... mmm...
  • After a heavy shower this afternoon, Arkland has enjoyed some lovely evening sunshine (of course, it's dark now...).

    Much to my surprise, my rather gruelling Pilates session today left me feeling somewhat less fatigued than usual (no pain, no gain - I know!). Each week, The Torturer pushes me just that little bit further, but it does all seem to be keeping me rather more mobile than I'd otherwise be.

    I shall have aching muscles tomorrow, You Mark My Words. However, nothing urgent needs to be done, so I shall stay below decks and eat Lamb Chops. There is also CHEESE - Cheddar with Garlic and Herbs... :yum:
  • A few spots of rain came down earlier but nothing exciting. I did some reading; a book on positive psychology in learning.

    Cheese and potato pie for tea, with puff pastry topping.
  • Having my hair cut tomorrow. Once again it has suddenly gone from being manageable to being unbearably shaggy.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    [...] Much to my surprise, my rather gruelling Pilates session today left me feeling somewhat less fatigued than usual (no pain, no gain - I know!). Each week, The Torturer pushes me just that little bit further, but it does all seem to be keeping me rather more mobile than I'd otherwise be.

    I shall have aching muscles tomorrow, You Mark My Words. [...]
    The Torturer will turn you into an olympick gymnast yet, you'll see! :)

    As a matter of fact, it's brilliant to know that stuff helps. Sometimes the most unusual methods provide considerable relief. Onwards, upwards, BF! :)
  • edited July 28
    BF, I go to Pilates come hell or high water (both mercifully rare around here) to ensure that I can continue to 1) get up the staircase at S Cottage; b) get in and out of my car and c) lift my grandchildren, all of whom are the sort that acquaintances say 'My, he/she's a big * boy/girl!'

    *not fat - hefty, perhaps
  • I find yoga helpful for similar reasons; it really improves flexibility and movement. I can also reach further than before, which is useful if you are very short.

    I don’t have anything planned today other than more reading for my studies and a little housework.
  • all of whom are the sort that acquaintances say 'My, he/she's a big * boy/girl!'

    *not fat - hefty, perhaps

    My daughter is one such - 5 years old and skinny but apparently heavier than her peers. My wife has gone to lift one of Little Miss Feet's friends out of our van and nearly hurled him across a car park because he was so light by comparison.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Finally, rain. Not the theatrical thunderstorms as promised, but a steady drizzle. Not that the garden minds I shouldn't think.

    Mr F and I are going into town presently to look for summer sandals (so that should be wet weather locked in for the next month or so).
  • PuzzlerPuzzler Shipmate
    I have appointments with the Dentist and the Hygienist this afternoon, long overdue, of course, because of Covid, so I am hoping there is not too much work to do.
  • PriscillaPriscilla Shipmate
    We’ve just had torrential rain for about 5 minutes. It was so dark, I had to put the light on!
  • Arkland, too, is presently enjoying short-but-sharp showers...which, alas, have discovered another Leak From Above, this time in the forward cabin which I use as office/study/library.
    :grimace:

    The culprit is the decklight - a sort of dormer window *on the flat* - which is protected by a fabric cover, partly translucent. Some of the seams have failed - the cover must be well over 20 years old - so I shall have to replace it. This sort of thing has to be custom-made, and is usually quite expensive.

    Meanwhile, a clear tarpaulin (happily already in stock for just such an eventuality) will be brought into use!
  • BF, I’ve always wanted to ask; what kind of boat is the Ark? What colour and features does it have?
  • BF, I’ve always wanted to ask; what kind of boat is the Ark? What colour and features does it have?

    It's a Dutch Barge (a *Luxemotor*) built in 1927, and about 68 feet long by 14 feet beam (whatever that is in metres!).

    Originally a general cargo vessel, with sleeping accommodation right at the stern for the skipper and wife, it was rebuilt in 1957 as an oil tanker (!) to serve a fishing-fleet in the north of the Netherlands. Later, the area of the former hold, which was the oil tank, was converted to living accommodation, the steelwork being built up to provide at least 2 metres headroom throughout (tall people, those Friesians). The interior is panelled, mostly with Dutch tongue-and-groove, or varnished ply.

    From the bows, moving aft, I have:
    Storage area under part of the foredeck, with anchor chain stowage;
    Fore cabin (the one with the Leaky Decklight);
    Short corridor, with double berth (partly open, in Dutch box-bed style) on one side, and bathroom on the other;
    Open-plan living area (saloon) with galley (kitchen), which has a coal-fired range, gas cooker, gas water heater, fridge, and washing-machine (also a microwave). The cupboards were all hand-built, and the worktop is surfaced with antique Delft tiles;
    Short stairway to deck;
    Wheelhouse, with engine room under (engine is not the original, but a DAF lorry engine from about 1970).

    The present wheelhouse replaced the original, along with the former sleeping-quarters behind it (they must have been very cramped).

    Features are few, apart from the typical shape and design of the hull itself, but include a hefty hand-operated crane which was used, I think, for hefting barrels of oil around...

    Colours are Boring. Hull is black, steelwork is now all Red Oxide, with a dash of Blue on the wheelhouse. I did have the wheelhouse in a typical Dutch colour - a sort of light Tan Brown - but got fed up with trying to paint a straight line between it and the Red Oxide!

    :smile:
  • MrsBeakyMrsBeaky Shipmate
    We are in Lyme Regis for a week. We spent our honeymoon here 45 years ago and it's lovely to be back. We've had some great downpours interspersed with glorious sunshine. The way the changing light plays on the cliffs is just wonderful 😍
  • Thank you, BF; it sounds lovely and I think a crane is quite a feature!
  • It is - and it works! Though to be honest it could do with a bit of TLC (and oil).
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Spent a morning tramping round 7 or 8 shoe shops in the city centre. Scored a pair of silver sandals for me, but the inexpensive trainers of his dreams still elude Mr F. Possibly because 'inexpensive' and branded trainers tend not to live in the same universe.
  • Bishops FingerBishops Finger Shipmate
    edited July 28
    Reminds me a happy ( :grimace: ) morning many years ago, spent with Mrs BF tramping around umpteen boutiques (do they still call them that?) in Sheffield city centre.

    Nothing for me, but I lost count of the number of times Mrs BF asked me *Does my Bum look big in this?*

    I refrain from revealing my answer(s), as TIACW.
  • Wesley JWesley J Shipmate
    [...] I lost count of the number of times Mrs BF asked me *Does my Bum look big in this?*

    I refrain from revealing my answer(s), as TIACW.

    This is one of those cruel trick questions ladies set up for a gent - if you say no, they claim you're a liar; if you say yes, they claim you don't love them. - You just can't win! (All from own experience!)

    :D :D
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Wesley J wrote: »
    [...] I lost count of the number of times Mrs BF asked me *Does my Bum look big in this?*

    I refrain from revealing my answer(s), as TIACW.

    This is one of those cruel trick questions ladies set up for a gent - if you say no, they claim you're a liar; if you say yes, they claim you don't love them. - You just can't win! (All from own experience!)

    :D :D

    You're thinking too binary. The correct responses are "you look lovely dear" or "I'm not sure it quite suits you".
  • Bishops FingerBishops Finger Shipmate
    edited July 28
    KarlLB wrote: »
    Wesley J wrote: »
    [...] I lost count of the number of times Mrs BF asked me *Does my Bum look big in this?*

    I refrain from revealing my answer(s), as TIACW.

    This is one of those cruel trick questions ladies set up for a gent - if you say no, they claim you're a liar; if you say yes, they claim you don't love them. - You just can't win! (All from own experience!)

    :D :D

    You're thinking too binary. The correct responses are "you look lovely dear" or "I'm not sure it quite suits you".

    Despite what I said earlier, my only response to the many times I was asked was indeed *You look lovely, dear*.

    It seemed to work...I was far too much of a cowardy-custard to make the second response...
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    KarlLB wrote: »
    Wesley J wrote: »
    [...] I lost count of the number of times Mrs BF asked me *Does my Bum look big in this?*

    I refrain from revealing my answer(s), as TIACW.

    This is one of those cruel trick questions ladies set up for a gent - if you say no, they claim you're a liar; if you say yes, they claim you don't love them. - You just can't win! (All from own experience!)

    :D :D

    You're thinking too binary. The correct responses are "you look lovely dear" or "I'm not sure it quite suits you".

    Despite what I said earlier, my only response to the many times I was asked was indeed *You look lovely, dear*.

    It seemed to work...I was far too much of a cowardy-custard to make the second response...

    Discretion is the better part of valour...
  • AravisAravis Shipmate
    Last time I asked that question, my husband’s response was “You can’t expect to keep your figure forever once you’re in your forties”.

    I’m now in my fifties but haven’t asked since!
  • 😆
    Not much done today, I read a little of my psychology book then watched the BBC iPlayer programme on eugenics (I’m interested in disability which comes up a lot in it).
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I just don't try on things in which I think my bum's going to look big. It does rather narrow down the possibilities (but not, alas, the bum).
    Apart from a not-very-impressive spitter of rain on the way to work (just enough that I donned a raincoat to walk to the station, but removed it once I got there), I didn't really notice much in the way of rain today, and by the time I left the office it was really rather nice.

    There's now a coolish, refreshing breeze ruffling the tree outside the window, which makes a nice change from the stifling mugginess of the last few weeks. Having said that, the overnight temperature is still supposed to be 13°, which I think of as quite warm - I might still need to toss the quilt away and sleep just under the sheet, as I've been doing for quite a while.
  • Penny SPenny S Shipmate
    We had two cloudbursts today, one in West Norwood, and then one between Sydenham and Mottingham, then got back home to dry roads.
    The West Norwood one, at the bottom of two hills found some blocked drains, and nearly, but not quite, reached the door I had been enquiring about sandbags for. I, parked alongside, had to move up the road because I was hub deep in the water. Fortunately, poking around in the gullies had it gulping itself down and it was soon gone.
    We were driving through the other one, roads awash, and at one time I pulled in, as I didn't feel safe in the traffic and the spray. We were going the same way as the cloud so getting out of it took time. Poor learner driver in front of us having to learn how to drive through shallow flood water/ deep puddle.
  • Slightly chaotic wedding rehearsal this evening, due to working around the Covid restrictions, being unfamiliar with the new legal procedures, and it being my first in this church.
  • SarasaSarasa Shipmate
    After rain being promised all day it finally arrived with lightening and heavy showers at about six. By eight it was sunny again so we trotted off for a bit of a walk round the neighbourhood.
    We've just bought a food processor, not having had room for gadgets in our previous kitchen. My husband made tapenade for lunch, and I made a spinach and parsley pesto for the potatoes we had for tea. It's going to be really useful.
  • la vie en rougela vie en rouge Circus Host, 8th Day Host
    Some men like women to have curves, so to speak.

    I don't really do asking husband en rouge whether a particular outfit enhances that part of my anatomy, but if I did, I'm fairly sure he'd think that a prominent posterior was a plus.

    He's an excellent cook, so he keeps me in curves and it all works out.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    Lots of drizzle today - the lawn is grateful!

    I got my winter kale, chard and cabbage planted the other day (seeds) so a downpour is not required!
  • SarasaSarasa Shipmate
    We've been trying to tidy up the end of our garden, and its so much easier to dig after a bit of rain. Our landscape gardener neighbour gave is a quote for digging the are and planting it, but decided we'd rather spend the money on getting to do the things we really can't do ourselves, like replacing some of the decking with raised beds and paving.
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