Random Jottings Of Gildersleeve

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Location: United Kingdom

Perhaps you'll learn more about me as you read my blog. For anyone who translates my blog using the translator facility, don't forget if you wish to read the comments in your own language to click on the title of the post down the left hand side otherwise they will remain in english. Also I assume that the translation is accurate but I don't know, so please allow for errors.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Years And Years Ago...

I had an Auntie and Uncle who were probably similar to the stereotypical image of a suburban couple living and working in London. He caught the train to the city, walked across Waterloo bridge and managed a big departmental store(or that's what we were led to believe)in reality he probably was manager of a particular floor in that store and resembled the character Captain Peacock in the TV sitcom Are You Being Served.

I don't think my Auntie worked(by choice?)though I suspect she probably was involved on various local committees of various organisations(?)There was even an air about them and could've even been the characters played by Paul Eddington and Penelope Kieth in The Good Life. The house was small(two up, two down)as was the garden. They chose(?)not to have children but they had the obligatory cat. They drove a Morris Minor.

He went to work wearing a bowler hat, a pin stripe suit, carried an umbrella and newspaper. She wore tweed two piece suits. She talked liked Dame Anna Neagle. Looked a bit like her too.

Anyhow after all that background...the point is...they never owned a TV. They were to be honest a bit snobbish about television. I assume they listened to the radio and back then when I did visit perhaps the one and only time(I was very young)they had record player but I don't remember a great library of records and the only one I do remember which is a bit of a surprise was the comedy album by US comedian Bob Newhart about the lady being taken for a driving lesson by an instructor.

However, whenever they used to visit my Uncle's Sister in a neighbouring town to mine and stay for a week or two they were mesmerized by television.  Perhaps if you don't have something like a TV in the house you don't miss it or get taken in. For quite some time I fell out of love with TV and found it boring(perhaps I was not looking at the right programmes)and as Mum became ill we both started to watch less and less, And when she passed away I felt strange watching programmes we had shared. I also found it difficult to take an interest in any of it.

I go through phases now where I can easily find myself letting TV wash over me if I let it or I channel surf not really watching anything. Then occasionally I do get into a film and stay the course. I prefer one off films/programmes to watching series'

Again I suspect in time I will get back into some kind of regular TV viewing and find something that gets my attention.

I was going to watch a few things last night and gave up. I watched the first of a sitcom starring and written by comedian Peter Kay. I may watch the second one tonight but if I miss it I won't be that bothered. I was also going to watch an old Clint Eastwood film co-starring Shirley Maclaine "Two Mules For Sister Sarah" which I have long since forgotten but gave up on that too.

I did pop out to the supermarket to buy a birthday card for my friends birthday next week so that's one task taken care of. And when I came home I found a ready meal in the fridge(I'd missed)out of date but I cooked it well, smelled it, looked at it, tasted it and decided it was OK and it was. So I had mince, dumplings and gravy.

Oh and as for my Auntie and Uncle...they did finally give in and purchase a TV of their own. But we are talking quite late in the day and they have been dead for years. We in the UK first accessed satellite TV around 1989 and I don't think they were alive when that started(or perhaps my Auntie was around a little longer)but having taken so long to get a TV I doubt they would've stretched to that technology. And probably therefore they still were only accessing two public channels from the BBC, ITV and Channel 4.

Had they lived they would've probably managed to go as far as having Freeview which offers viewers in the UK more channels via a different delivery system for free. But then again my own Father passed away so long ago he missed out on satellite, Freeview and never saw a computer or the internet but I know had he lived he would've embraced the new technology and been on here.

Some of my references may be less understandable if the programmes have not been shown in your country or you are too young.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Tuesday Was Good...

I've pulled out items from the pantry and with am empty wheelie bin, today I shall put all that in
to cupboards and/or get it into the bin. May take no more than an hour.

Good night at the music club. I won a couple of small prizes(but you pay for them really)but it helps finance the club. One is a raffle and I won some some items in a box for washing in the shower/soap etc...and in the Tombola raising money for an intensive care unit at a local hospital a small box of chocolates.

I bothered with food today and am back in the swing of things...Had wild vegetable rice, a fish cake and hash browns for tea. Later today I may bother with breakfast and have porridge with fruit. Even I don't eat it today I think I'll cook and put in storage boxes a stew/casserole in the slow cooker(vegetables and some kind of meat)Could be Chicken thighs but I've found some boned and they only cost an extra 50p so I think that is good value.

I also discovered some slow cooked diced Irish Beef and the smaller 200g was not more expensive than purchasing the larger version so that smaller pack will be better for me. More likely to use it all up.

For lunch perhaps a salad or a big wholemeal bun with everything salad in it!

I've treat myself to some Jersey Royal potatoes too. I was in the supermarket at midnight but its only a couple of streets away and my mobility was a little better so I shopped then rather than later today.

I was eating mini ice lollies at 1am!

Think I'll have another mug of coffee and listen to the radio a little longer and look over my TV listings magazine. With Bank holiday coming up I was hoping something special is on the radio/tv but I don't think that there is...

Hoping Wednesday is as good as Tuesday has been.

Update:It can be dangerous to suggest what plans may be later on...yes I am clearing rubbish away. Yes I am going to make an effort on what I shall be eating but...its reached 5pm and I am only now thinking about "Food!" and it will probably be very simple.

Having gone through the TV magazine though nothing special is jumping out at me I have seen a few programmes and films(mainly old ones)that I quite fancy looking at and I may make an effort to sit in the lounge and watch on my larger TV even if that means my electric bill will increase.  And it appears that a national terrestrial TV channel belonging to ITV have or are starting to show the TV series Gunsmoke which I was watching quite a few of(not always in the right order)and I had stopped watching after doing so daily towards the end of last year and the start of this year.

Firstly via CBS Action and then another called True Entertainment. It helps if one channel runs a series in order and can show all of the episodes but these days they often switch across stations or some hold the rights to only some episodes so you have to chase them around the schedules.

Monday, April 27, 2015

I Almost Had My Jaw Drop...

earlier today, I shopped a little and all I purchased was bread, buns and...two salmon fillets. I'd spent £4.40 but then I thought the bread and buns will last me ages and I can use it for sandwiches, toast and have it with other meals...but the price of salmon???? Then I thought...its good for you. I think I'll keep the salmon back for Bank holiday(its not that far away)

You can have it in sandwiches, have flakes of it in scrambled egg, make fish cakes, have it in a salad etc...and I thought portioned out it suddenly comes down to £1 or less per snack/meal and suddenly that's not at all bad.

Its the birthday of  my special needs friend(the one who was in hospital)next Tuesday. We're having a little buffet at the Music Club, there just happens to be a good act on that night which will be nice for him but sadly his memory has been affected by his illness and time in hospital and he keeps forgetting its his birthday and how old he is.

The night has dragged a bit but as usually happens as it becomes later I start to feel more rested and my usual self. I've heard an interesting documentary on BBC Radio 2 about some of the music I grew up on and love composed in the Brill Building in New York. So much of that music still sounds good decades later even though no one is writing to that formula which it was. How did they sit in a building daily for around ten hours and come up with all those hits?

I am about to switch to topical comedy on Radio 4 about the upcoming UK election in May. I'm not hopeful of any party being good for me, I hope they'll be good for the UK but I will make a decision who to vote for. I do know who I will not be voting for and certainly not the parties that have been in the coalition for the last 5 years. My own constituency doesn't have as many as some areas. Other areas have held Hustings but my own area has not. I don't know if they make much difference to be honest.

If I had lived in another part of the UK(Wales, Scotland and N. Ireland)or if I thought another couple of "New" parties could make a difference and be voted in big enough numbers I could imagine giving them a try. I do think some of the make up of the main parties is different in the other countries that make up the UK and England where I live has lost its way somewhat.

I don't think the UK has a democracy, we make the best of what we have. Times could be changing but I'm not sure that I will be around if/when any change really does happen.

I often talk with someone who is well into his 80's and he says we've never really had a democracy. But its how things are. We are living in Interesting but scary times.

Sunday Was Good...

I came home with loads of fruit which I am determined to get back into the habit of eating as I used to.

The Remembrance Service at my local church for Mum and Dad was comforting but Mum was announced as Katherine instead of Kathleen but it still went well. No excuse as it was written out clearly for them. One year someone was not read out so errors do happen.

I won a house on the bingo tonight but was so busy watching the other cards I was marking I missed it! I realised quickly but the next number had been read out. I did win £10 on a domino card so I was only down £2 on the night but had I won the lot I would've been £25 up on the night. The two ladies I was with won three houses between them much as last week so for them it was another good week.

I had some ham rolls, cheese, crisps and little Lemon Bakewell cakes that I took a long and some Items I came home with and had for supper but the ham and cheese went down well. I gave a ham roll, crisps and a cake to someone who always comes over to talk with me and she's a bit special needs and she won't talk to everyone but she does me, bless her she gave me a kiss on the cheek and thanked me. I must have one of those kind faces who she senses my nature.

I've started clearing more rubbish into the wheelie bin and creating space for items that are not for throwing out so I am getting there.

I have had dates given for when I can expect my repairs to the house to be looked at too...after the tenancy visit that happened last week which went OK.

I'll take it easy today and then I'll start the ball rolling again over Mum's money and start to pull the garden into shape.

I said I have only a few events planned but I do have a local show at our music club in six days, another show in nineteen days which I will attend with two very good friends Joe and Andrea(who I know through the music club)but see elsewhere these days.

Each only costs £5 and that won't be missed as I have been careful what I spend and its only like putting aside £3 a week. The second may go up slightly if I have a drink and we will be sharing a taxi there and back but sharing brings the cost down. And you are taken from door to door.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Strange Day...

Slept well...I know that I dreamed and again I think I returned to a part of my life I was less than happy in(when I was working at my first job)but I still felt great upon waking.

I dozed off later on but woke later with that strange knotted feeling in my stomach so the answer was to get up, the weather isn't great but I popped down the town and purchased some bin bags for bagging up more stuff for the wheelie bin, paid my TV license(it had to be done)its now out of the way for another year. Oh and I purchased 3 jars of Ross' pickled onions!!!! Well they are on offer and they only cost me £1. Its ages since I had a pickled onion.

I could start the work now but I'll wait until tomorrow...then go to the remembrance service at the church for 4pm.

I may make a few ham and tomato buns for the bingo tomorrow night, take some cheese and crisps. I don't need a lot and again there are fewer of us because one of our group is back in hospital again. And as last Sunday his "Girlfriend" may decide to miss the night too. So we'll be down to three people.

I think its going to be a night of radio listening and pottering around on the internet. I may try and do something nice for an evening meal later but for now I have a remaining chicken, cheese and bacon slice which I am about to have but I won't be buying them again. They are more pastry than filling. The ones from the local baker/freezer shop is better value than the supermarket.

I gave in and purchased three more shirts yesterday at the charity shop, only 99p each and good brands...BHS, M&S and Next.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Having A Down Day...

Can't tell you why. I often find I am susceptible to these feelings and something does happen so will wait to see what suddenly comes out of nowhere and knock me sideways...but its not a bad, bad day.

Wednesday(the third anniversary of Mum's passing)was calm, peaceful and happy. So there's the difference.

Yesterday went well regarding the visit from the Housing Association but I detest those visits and unlike some such organisations my landlord seems overly officious and strict. Luckily, it went well and hopefully I will be left alone again for another year. It was more easy thanks to the continued support from my friend Andrea and I like having her here as a witness.

Back to Wednesday...I don't have many events planned for this year and I am watching my health and finances more but I did have a concert to attend that I had booked some time ago. A couple of weeks ago it was the US singer(but mainly songwriter)Jimmy Webb...this time it was Albert Hammond(who will be 71 years old in a few weeks)he's doing only a few shows in the UK and luckily Durham was chosen for one of them.

It would be easier to say what he hasn't done in the last five decades than what he has done. Writing songs for just about anyone and everyone in the business and if you love music its a fair bet you've some of his songs in your music collection or have heard them on the radio or used on the soundtrack of a film. Many songs, that if I am honest I have liked and did not realise he was behind them. I would need to study if he wrote the lyrics, the music or both.

He wasn't precious, very approachable and came into the audience and shook hands, didn't mind people taking images as some performers do. I could've got many more images than I have and wish I had taken the time to but I will put some into this post.

He also delivered for a reasonable ticket price and honestly he doesn't need to perform and playing smaller venues he's probably not making a profit so perhaps its the buzz of performing why he still does or he uses the larger venues so he can still perform in smaller ones.

He came on stage at 7.30pm and stayed there until 10pm. No intermission. A great night.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Day Continues To Be...

quite good actually. I'm not thinking deeply. I'm quite peaceful and untroubled. The sun is shining and it seems warmish. Indoors its 62f/16c so probably is even hotter outside.

I've just about completed all the tasks that I can before tomorrow. Just a quick tidy/dust of the kitchen and dining room so its gone quite well. I'll leave those last task until I come home tonight from the concert with Albert Hammond. I don't want to tire myself out before going to the theatre.

The vacuum cleaner has failed me but I don't want to buy one now, I shall wait until my finances are sorted in the coming weeks/months. Did you know that the word "shall" is going out of fashion and being dropped from conversation. I heard that awhile ago on a radio programme about the use of the English language.

I only have to get shaved(again)pop a shirt on, trousers and as its quite a nice day I may look for a light jacket to put on rather than a heavy one.

If I go out sooner for the bus I may for now buy a brush and dust pan and its the day my computer magazine comes out and the TV magazine so I may have something to read on the bus there and back(in the interval if the concert)If Albert comes out to the foyer after the concert(many do)and I am between buses I may try and take a couple of photo's. I'm not bothered about "Selfies" with me in the picture too. If I ever get around to having a tablet or a smartphone perhaps one day I will.

Housework Almost Completed...

I did it when I came in from the Music Club...only a little left to do which I will later this morning at a sensible hour but if any remains I'll complete it after the concert tonight featuring Albert Hammond.

The main task for today will be to see if I can get the vacuum cleaner working. The house is tidy/dusted and polished.

In my shopping list as I "Have" to spend money from Mum's estate otherwise I will see no benefit(it will go on bills otherwise)are:Beds, curtains, carpets, lounge furniture, laptop, tablet, microwave, vacuum cleaner, mobility scooter(perhaps a stair lift)garden equipment, decoration of the home. I have to prove purchases with receipts. I may be allowed a little holiday(just not a world cruise)*;) winking I have over the years made things last and am very much a kind of make and mend kind of guy.

I have been offered support and kindness from two very good friends(one will sit in with me on Thursday for the visit form my landlord and act as a kind of witness)and another is offering help to get my garden into shape. I am very grateful.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I'm So Sleepy...

Not that I am now up and about and I have tasks to do between now and Thursday. Also two music events...The Music Club tonight and we have an official turn on our little stage and tomorrow its Albert Hammond in Durham which just happens to fall on the third anniversary of Mum's passing(I did not realise at the time but am determined to enjoy it.

Last evening I attended a a murder mystery at one one of the smallest theatres I have ever been in...perhaps the smallest ever. But it had proper seats, lovely velvet type curtains in a blue grey colour, a fairly decent size stage and it only held approx 72 people in the audience and because we were so close to the stage everyone on stage was able to talk at a normal level, they did not need to throw their voices to the back of the room or need microphones to raise the level.

It was a play written by Brian Clemens who wrote many TV plays and series like The Avengers and The Professionals. It was called "Murder Weapon"

All the details are here  

It was great and the cast were very good. Five principles and two who made small appearances. I hope I shall attend other plays they stage.

I don't have many images of Mum and Dad or of myself but as the third anniversary comes around of Mum's passing tomorrow I came across this of my parents wedding day in March 1948 so I put it on my blog for no other reason than I felt that I wanted to.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Almost Sorted...

For the visit on Thursday now...I may report the house repairs to the person who calls then. We're only talking three days and recently phoned in repairs have been ignored.

I'm out of the house in approx five hours...play bingo and then head out to Durham for the thriller play at the little theatre hidden away from view. My first visit. Hopefully not my last. The Weapon by Brian Clemens.

I'll take a bottle of water, a packet of crisps and perhaps a chicken bun to keep me going until I return home probably after 10pm.

I only need a quick shave but at a push I could getaway without doing that if I have to.

Its a bit scary...my friend who was slightly mentally impaired but managing quite well has been affected by his stay in hospital and his short term memory has been affected still further(we all hope temporally)but its not looking good. Its his birthday soon and he's forgotten that and how old he is but he's here and has people around him that care and keep him involved in things. He tires easily too.

And like me he now needs help to be mobile. I can manage with a walking stick(s)but its a struggle and I'm as I have said thinking of investing in a mobility scooter or a power chair. He probably would not be allowed to use those so he is dependent on a walker and/or Zimmer frame both inside or out. So he has become housebound which he has accepted with good grace.

He was seriously ill and in hospital for a long time and kept in an enforced coma type state and those drugs can have affects. That plus two heart attacks, who knows what all that has caused.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

I Was Too Tired To Do What I Planned To...

which is a pity as really all it entailed was a bus ride and the destination was virtually where the bus terminates. A local food festival. But hopefully, I'll attend next year. And perhaps other events throughout the year. ..but I didn't feel "Human" until late afternoon.

But I'm ready for the bingo club this evening and the thriller at a little theatre in Durham tomorrow(Its a case of pacing yourself)and not setting goals too high. You do what you are able to.

I've had a ready meal(meant for two)but I found it was enough for one person to be honest. Diced potato, chicken, leeks and a creamy sauce.

I'm taking it easy, just have to get shaved and dressed, listening to an afternoon of easy listening music on the radio. And feeling reasonably "upbeat"

Update:Luck was on my table at the bingo but not for me...one of my group won two houses of bingo worth a total of £60 and another person won one house worth £30 and as a number she chose was the number that was called as the final number on a bingo game she won £35 for that so that £65 in total.I reckon with other games, drinks and taxi fares they were each approx £40 in pocket this week but as they don't win every week over the year they are probably lucky to break even or be down but its a bit of fun and a night out. I don't spend as much myself. If you are going to win you'll do so.

I purchased a ticket for a Ceilidh with a band I know for May 16th and luckily I can save the cost of a taxi because a bus passes by, both there and back but I may have to hang around to catch the last bus home. Its a fairly inexpensive night but it may go up if I have buy a few drinks through the night. I'll try and make what I buy last as long as I can. I do know the band that is playing and they are good.

I haven't that many theatre events planned at this time. Down considerably to the last three years because of a number of reasons...Some acts I have seen a couple of times and though I like them I want to save money towards something I haven't seen, some productions are too expensive or difficult to get to, some haven't been announced as yet and some are are simply not of interest to me. Also some shows are being staged more locally to where I live and are well priced around the £4-£8 price range. Or even better are free.

Saturday, April 18, 2015


It could be warmer and sunnier but its not raining which I'm sure will please the food festival taking place approx 7 miles up the road. Its taken me until 1pm to wake up enough so I feel ready to face the world.

Joints feel a little stiff and painful and occasionally I have had some numbness(pins and needles)in my fingers but that's a bit like trapped nerves as if I move into another position it goes away. I can only lie in certain positions for a short time before I have to shift to another in an attempt to find a way of getting comfortable.

I'll potter about until 5pm when I shall get shaved and dressed. Then take the shopping cart back to the supermarket and retrieve my £1 and head for the bus stop which drops me off practically outside the church where the Police Choir are appearing.

If the person I am seeing it with brings his son(I understand that he's coming too)I may be fortunate to get a lift home. If not...there is a bus at 9.03pm and 10.03pm depending on when the concert ends otherwise I will walk very slowly home. Taking lots of short cuts.

So I shall disappear and do some more little jobs and not waste the time I have. If I work today I can consider going to the food festival tomorrow.

Friday, April 17, 2015

A Few Jobs All Happening At Once...

I found some more plants available for my tubs so I have added marigolds and impatiens with the pansies  now.

On Monday I will have to report a fairly large repair that needs doing to my home. I have managed to make the job last practically 50 years but now it will even beat me. I think every house on my block has had to have this done, only with everyone else buying their home they've had to pay for the work to be done.

The front downstairs window has a surround of concrete and the top one is starting to crack and crumble away. And if not done soon a big piece will break off and drop to the ground. I could wait until Thursday and mention it to the person calling from the Housing Association but I may as well report it as soon as possible.

Its been a strange day weather wise. If you put a scarf on, you get too warm, take it off you are too cold. The sun has been out though and Durham looked nice. I attended the little music session and found out this evening the singer was performing at another place in Durham with a big band and the tickets were quite reasonable but public transport is not reliable or it ends too soon for the location the concert was to be held so I had to give up on that idea. I have seen the trio before and two members play in quite a few ensembles usually only the name changes depending on who is singing and whether a trio increases in size and becomes a quartet or whatever. Its light jazz. In July someone is appearing playing alto sax who actually played in Ray Charles' band. That may be worth seeing.

I reheated my soup in the microwave after getting home. It was quick and easy. If I'm up to it I may go the food festival that is happening in a neighbouring town but I really think this year I will refrain from buying anything because much of what's available though high quality is expensive and I don't need food.

I did spend a little but not a lot. Mainly salad items. I'll get a few meals from those items and I found some cheap nail clippers(misplaced the ones in the house)and found a pack of three in different sizes for £1.29. I spent most money on my plants. Twenty Marigolds and twenty Impatiens for £7.16. I wondered how I was going to get my shopping home without a shopping trolley or using a taxi but the shopping cart didn't have a brake on it and I only live close by so I used it and came home with everything in it and I'll take it back in the morning.

I have the police choir concert tomorrow evening.

One of my "Bingo" gang that we go with on Sundays I have been told has gone into hospital today but so far that is all I know...

My notice remembering Mum has appeared in the newspaper today and that was correct. There is a remembrance service next Sunday for people to remember their loved ones at my church so I may attend that next week.

I think that I shall have a rest now and a mug of coffee...

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Nothing Really Planned...

Its bingo night so just have to get tidied up. Home made vegetable soup about to go on in the slow cooker which I will add some chicken to later. If its ready before I go out I'll have some or wait until I return from the bingo.

I am quite happy, ask me later when I get things rolling again on my financial situation.

My little notice remembering Mum will be in tomorrows paper. I didn't realise at the time but the concert on Wednesday next week falls on the day Mum passed away. But after a day of reflection that may be a nice way to end it.

And as said previously, if I am OK health wise Its one of my busy periods...I have fewer theatre dates this year so am not out as much/spending as much. But Friday lunchtime there's a little jam session. Saturday its a police choir, bingo on Sunday, Am Dram thriller Monday night/bingo in the afternoon, Music Club Tuesday, Concert Wednesday and bingo on Thursday night. Three of those are in Durham, the rest are on my town and quite nearby. It also helps that we now have quite light nights.

Not much else to mention today. That can be a good thing.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A Kick Up The Bum!

I am about to face my housework and I'll finish it by hook or by crook. I am not stopping until its done. That is my big task of the day/week. Then a dust/polish between now and next week. I'll destroy some cardboard boxes so I can get that out for recycling on Friday then I can fool myself all is well and relax for a few days.

There's not much else planned/happening for now but I will have to get back into the chasing up of my windfall from Mum and buying items to make my financial situation better again(hopefully)

May make a stew/home made soup in the slow cooker later(vegetables based with added beef or chicken)

Thinking putting a memorandum notice in the local freesheet for next week to remember Mum by. Never thought that I would but I kind of feel that I want to. Its almost as if Mum never existed and there are so few things to remember her by though she's in my heart and mind. That is most important of all. With virtually all her own family and relatives no longer alive and me being the last of the line once I go there will probably no one to remember her or me for that matter. Keeping it simple.

"Three years since we said goodbye. I still miss you and always will. God bless you Mum, with Love" Her name at the start of the notice and my name at the end.

Tuesday's Gone...Wednesday Already...

I did little on Tuesday and felt great but today its back to the housework. That's fine...

As I believe I said previously I kept the meals simple and had chicken breast on Monday and Tuesday. Both were enough only 204 calories each. I had some Belgium chocolate cake remaining and finished that off too on Tuesday, I bet that increased my calorie intake somewhat.

Music Club in the evening...another good night. Don't think the weather was bad during the day, according to the weather people on the radio it was the warmest day of the year so far but I didn't think that myself. Perhaps it depended where you were and when I did go out this evening there was a really string wind to battle against, it was a struggle for me both because of the wind and walking was painful and slow. I managed but that was because of determination.

Monday, April 13, 2015

I've Done All That I Am Able...

For the visits of the meter reader and service engineers for the central heating. Doors are closed to rooms that they have no need to enter, only one room untidy(not in use)but loads thrown out and all clothes in wardrobes.

I think with a good go at it, it could be cleared by tomorrow. Wednesday at the latest, that still gives me seven days where I'll be free of having to do any work for the inspection.

I've run out of space in the wheelie bin.  So if what I have is bagged up they'll have to understand. I'll give both of those calling today up until midday and then I'll have to head out to my afternoon bingo club.

My utility company said they'd call between 9am-1pm but I have sent meter readings in a few times this week directly online. The service engineers are due between 8.30am-Midday(they could've called upto 5pm but I phoned a few weeks ago and told them I was not in after Midday and they said they'd call sometime in the morning so we'll see.

No shopping today *:) happy Just waiting to see if I have a small win at the bingo *B-) cool we do get a free cup of tea and usually cheese and fruit scones in the intermission and a bit of a chat.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Supper Taken Care Of...

Fish and potato wedges and a mug of coffee...a little rest and then work...Listening to easy listening music on Radio 2 as I usually do on a Sunday night. I'll switch to the World Service through the night.

I didn't win at the bingo. The turn was OK but loud and my ears are a bit dull afterwards and that is having worn earplugs!!! He was wearing them too.

Oh well, the week starts in the morning and as they can call anytime from 8.30am I better be up and ready.

Feeling Quite Super This Sunday Morning...

The weather doesn't look too good so no excuse needed to stay indoors and do something worthwhile like housework *:) happy but starting the day with a long lie in and listening to the Archers on Radio 4 then I'll get into the work. Its all about pottering about.

The lounge is done, the dining may take half and hour at most, the kitchen perhaps fifteen minutes, the same in the outhouse and then I can spend the remaining time on bundling the pile of rubbish in the bedroom until I go out tonight and if not completed finish that off when I come in from my Sunday bingo and turn night.

And still if some that needs doing I have ten days ahead of me before the visit from the landlord. And two wheelie bin collections between then and now. So most of that will have been taken away or anything remaining will be in the bin waiting to go.

I have some clothes to put hang up or put in the compartments of the wardrobe which will take only a few minutes. And I have also created some spare space in one of the inbuilt wardrobes in the house where I can perhaps put any extra clothes I may buy in the future. My bedding and towels are in another and my food store is in another(out of sight)

I may be able to move my little booze store into the pantry. Plus spare crockery and cleaning items.

Then its just case of doing the house up when the windfall comes through. I am waiting for my gardener to get in touch to tidy things up but if he fails to show if I take it very carefully and slowly I may be able to tackle it myself even if I am slow. I know someone who is virtually housebound and seriously ill and he manages to mow his lawns so as long I don't have to attempt heavy digging perhaps I can give it a go again.

Only have to decide what to have for my meal later in the day and what little treats to take out to the bingo tonight.*&lt:-P party

Update:My own bedroom is tidy and one of the others so that's even less work to do and when I said the weather seemed bad, it is...it is raining heavily.

Update2:I had to have a quick look out as I had run out of wooden coat hangers and I couldn't find any on my own town and I came back with some fly swatters too(5 for £1)I only need one. Why do I need five? Going to give the rest away. I found a big box of Demerara sugar cubes for £1 for my coffee(makes a change to sweeteners. A tube of high factor 45 sun cream for £1(hoping for a decent summer)and if I forget my hat being bald I need to put it on my head *=)) rolling on the floor and some thermal socks.

I found some cherry tomatoes, pork pies and chicken legs which will keep me happy all week or longer. And for my gang tonight some ready salted crisps containing the little blue bag of salt...remember them? I'll take some little Easter type cakes too. I haven't spent much in general and only approx £2 for tonight.

Now I can hang up the clothes I purchased yesterday and a few other items too.

Going to take it easy now and do a little more tidying up when I come in tonight and if its going well, I'll just continue until the end, I can sleep anytime I like and even go to bed early if I wish tomorrow night. Unless I go to another music event happening on the town near me but the guest comes to my club on a Tuesday quite often and that is usually free so I may just have a quiet night in instead.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Up And Moving About...

It keeps the mind active. Too late to go anywhere so pottering about. Plenty of time for that. Pulling strands together for the visit on Monday(mentioned earlier)and if done I have nothing to do until I get my financial situation sorted and get the house "done up" and my mobility scooter.

Which within reason means that perhaps I can get out and about during Summer.

I hear that some scooters are allowed on public transport but I don't envisage going that far unless I deteriorate even more and that is why I have thought about having a small scooter for a second one which will be accepted on a bus. Though if I was that bad I would probably give up. The sun is out but its not as sunny as during the week and could be changing. Therefore I don't feel too bad having to stay indoors and do some light work.

I may consider having a look out tomorrow,

I know that I'm feeling not that bad because I will make the effort later to have something nice for tea.

Update:Forgive me...I did pop outdoors for an hour's break and spent some money. Nothing outrageous...some bread, bread buns, broccoli, potato wedges and Rainbow Trout which was reduced. However, I did spend some money in the charity shop and for a jumper, two short sleeved shirts and three long sleeved shirts for £5.94. Good enough for me...

The blue shirts are in a small check pattern, the white shirt is striped and the short sleeved are in large checks and the jumper is just a fairly ordinary striped one. One is an M&S cotton shirt. I think there is an ASDA George garment, Greenwoods and some may be Primark, another brand looks quite expensive but I don't recognise the name on the label.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Lost My Spark...

a little but the overall opinion is that subconsciously I'm still grieving and its coming around to the date Mum passed away and even with my financial concerns when that date passes by I will pick up again. everyone is different and I have heard it said that it can take five years or more to come to terms with the loss of someone. And when its someone you are very close to...you'll cope but you'll never be quite the same.

Found some more clothes for the charity shop. I didn't buy anything today. Having a good final clear out of the outhouse now. I can work out there now the weather is warmer.

All will be clear for the visit on Monday of the workers servicing the central heating/checking the smoke/fire/carbon monoxide detectors etc...and the meter reader though I have already sent those readings into the website.

All I then have to do is a quick dust, vacuum(if the machine will work)and polish and I have ten days to get on top of that before the tenancy visit. If I am really on top of it all by morning...(I still have Sunday to do some more work)I may take myself off and ride around the N East on the buses and just go where they take me.

As long as I can catch a connecting service home in the evening but hearing the weather may be less than perfect and because I have tasks to finish I may put that plan off and do it next weekend or go midweek. I don't think I have anything lined up on Wednesday. Next weekend is out now I think about it because I watching a concert in a local church where the Durham Constabulary Choir are performing.

I can't go far on Monday(bingo in the afternoon)Tuesday its the Music Club in the evening. Thursday the little bingo club in the evening again. Lunchtime concert in Durham on Friday. So its Wednesday or nothing.

Had a quick ready meal of sausages, gravy and mashed potato that hit the spot. listened to a concert celebrating the life and music of Billie Holiday. Not a bad day and good news on the health front at the Dr's.

Thursday, April 09, 2015

Here We Go Again...

There's always something...I've had them for years(all my life?)but I have become aware of a couple of spots on the back of my neck. I don't normally see them and I don't know if I've clipped them with a razor taking off hair. TBH I've never seen them before but now that I have I'm going to book an appointment with a Dr tomorrow morning. My Dr is off until Monday and as there are workmen calling on Monday morning so I couldn't go the surgery then anyhow. Hope its nothing... perhaps I'll make matters worse going about them but...

Wonder which Dr's are on in the morning?

Update:I have an appointment for 10.50am its either something or nothing...wait to see if I am told to go for further tests.

Update2:Not overly concerned/not worried. He believes that I have taken the top off with the razor but said better to be sure and a colleague who was sitting in(new Dr for the practice)said that she had seen a five year old boy lose his life because some simple spots had been ignored/seen too late.

The Day Passed By I Don't know How...

Weather has been good but I haven't been out in it. I never heard a knock at the door but someone called to read the electric and gas meters from the utility company. They are returning on Monday morning which just happens to coincide with the morning the company working for the H Ass will be coming to check the central heating out so that's a happy coincidence. I'll be up and ready for all of them. But I have already submitted my meter readings as I often do anyhow.

I'm away to get shaved and ready to go to the little bingo club. Its been an expensive day in that the window cleaner called today and I owed for two previous visits plus today so that cost me £15 and then I am sharing a taxi tonight so another person can go to the bingo club as his lift isn't available tonight. So I have another £4.50 to find for a return taxi ride(I would've used buses both ways)Free.

Then there is the cost of the night(around £5)so I hope I win something tonight. The prizes aren't great but usually £3-£4 for a line and £7-£8 for a house so anything would be welcome*

I've had a ready meal earlier, it was OK and only took 8 mins in the microwave and was onion gravy, mashed potato and three pork and leek sausages. It only cost £1. I can something else later on...I may have some sweet and sour chicken, I have some chicken in the fridge and some Uncle Ben's Sauce in the cupboard. I can do that really quick in the microwave and eat it out of the same bowl that I cook it in. I have rice too.

Lately I've been buying chicken thighs and if chosen carefully you can get a fair amount of meat for little money. I've discovered six for £2 in Iceland and for £3(same place)eight to nine portions and they can sometimes have more meat on them. However, I'm giving six chicken legs a try in Aldi's for £2.24. I'm wondering what the difference is(if they are better value)for that I managed to get six and they cook well in a slow cooker.

*I won a house(£8)so was only £1 down on the night, Remember I was popped on by a pigeon a few days ago perhaps it brought me luck after all.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

A Bad Night...

Restless sleep, painful joints. Not in the best frame of mind. Throwing myself into some tasks. Then I may go and see my friend for the afternoon(I was invited over)but I can't stay that long because I have to catch a bus to see a concert I booked months ago and I must try and stay in the right mood for what I expect to be a special night.

The concert is given by American songwriter/performer Jimmy Webb who has written many songs for some of the most popular singers of the last 50 decades including Glen Campbell.

Update:I was cooked a small tea by the Mum of my friend before going to Durham for the concert. I don't know if I was feeling better or painkillers had kicked in but even if I was slow I was not in as much pain walking to and from bus stops. Or to and from the theatre. And I arrived with plenty of time to spare,

The image I took at the concert was washed out sadly but as I'd missed a bus home and I knew Jimmy was going to meet the audience after the concert and sign/sell CD's I hung on and took some photo's. I could've taken loads but settled on three or four. He was very approachable and had time for everyone but I just took my photo's and left. He was on stage for almost two hours without a break. I like all kinds of music but wasn't too keen on the opening act, Jimmy would've been enough.

Then again, the opening act was on a hiding to nothing considering that for some reason though there was a selection of guitars on stage none of them could get a signal to the mixing desk in the theatre and in the end an electric guitar had to be used to accompany the vocalist and I assume the set would've sounded different had different types of guitar had been used.

A master class of how to entertain with stories and peppered with songs from his vast repertoire. There were only four or five people in the bus station when I finally got there but it filled up when it was time for various buses to take us to our various locations. We had a couple of interesting people(the worse for wear)one lady was sat slumped bent over and another lady who'd had far too much to drink decided to sit down next to her and insisted on talking to her.

Another story I have no idea how it will end and whether it was true but an older lady carrying a Tesco Shopping bag asked if I phone the police because she was claiming that she had been raped at a neighbouring town so I started to take her to the security office at the bus station when a police officer happened to walk into the station and he took over. She didn't appear to be confused or under the influence of drink or drugs.

He took the lady outside to talk and not long after she started to cry. Eventually, she was put into his police car and he went somewhere whilst his female colleague kept her company. It was at least half an hour before she was allowed into the police car. Around 45 minutes after I had spoken to her and I was on my bus to come home he appeared from somewhere and went back to the car. I had earlier heard her say that she wanted to go to hospital to be examined.

What a way to end the evening...My bus dropped someone off approx two minutes outside of Durham and then there was only me on it for the journey back to my town approx 13 miles and 40 mins away. I was home around Midnight and realised that I had forgotten to pick up my computer magazine so popped in Tesco's for that and now I'm home ready for bed so I will have a little read and have a milky mug of coffee. Listen to the radio a little(The BBC World Service)

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

I'm Not Feeling Guilty...

and I feel fine but I've slept well. Don't remember any dreams. I don't feel tired, I don't feel down but have to admit that I haven't been out of bed that long. And I don't have any plans for the rest of the day(even if the sun is shining)perhaps I may go to the bank and try and arrange an appointment for another day and see if they are prepared to offer advice...good or bad. But I don't have to. The bank is only a few streets away anyhow.

I may go back to my bed and do some more radio listening...

Update:I didn't. In fact I'm off to the bank* Doubt I'll get an appointment today but perhaps I can arrange one. I'm not expecting a great outcome but if you don't talk, how does one know?

I'm awaiting contact with my gardener to pull everything into shape again. I owe £10 to the window cleaner(and if he calls again soon)that becomes £15. If I could reach all of the windows(I'd do it myself )still may look into it using one of those long poles but some you still cannot reach because of where they are/how they open. I don't think they need doing every month if I'm honest. Wish I could have them washed perhaps every two months.

A fly in the ointment...though I can understand the first appointment...they are coming next Monday to check the gas central heating(servicing)check the smoke/fire alarms etc...Then in approx 15 days its one of those annual tenancy visits that I hate. Especially as I dislike my landlord(Housing Association)as I've said before I've yet to meet anyone(anecdotal)who does like them.

*Bank was a waste of time and they suggest a charity that helps the disadvantaged in the UK(CAB)and to be honest they weren't much help the last time we discussed issues associated with my current situation.

Monday, April 06, 2015

I Can't Say Much Has Happened Today...

because it hasn't. The weather has been nice though. As said in the comments accompanying the previous post. I'm having a quiet night. There's nowhere to go and many shops have closed now being that its Easter Monday. Sunday bus service too but to be honest once you get past 6pm there's not much difference. I have a kind of soup/chicken casserole in the slow cooker to enjoy later.

Feeling reasonably upbeat too.

Oh I was pooped on my a town pigeon, that's as exciting as it gets...

The meal is quite nice if a little bland and even with kidney issues I did have to add a little salt,

Update:I'm afraid...I ate the whole lot. And it wasn't a struggle. I had a can of cider...relaxed a little online and then went to bed. And slept very well.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Having A Thoughtful Day...

I will do something a little more energetic tomorrow but today listening to nostalgic music on the radio. I may have some chicken sandwiches for tea. Its quite sunny outside but I don't think that its very warm but friends online seem to be saying the opposite so perhaps Spring has arrived and Summer isn't that far behind.

I almost went out but with few destinations and a Sunday bus service and many places closed for Easter Sunday I stayed home.

I'll make an effort to get shaved, change clothes around 5pm(ish)and I'll see what I can rustle up for the little bingo session for my little group. Keeping it simple...possibly some cheese and biscuits, a few Easter cakes and crisps...There is a raffle tonight but I can't find my tickets but I only purchased a couple of strips so I'm not too bothered if they don't turn up before I go. Just happy for now I can afford to go(its my most expensive night of the week)I can do all of my social events of the week for what I spend on one night on a Sunday.

Its OK if I break even by winning a bingo game or one of the other little games that are played. Prizes are modest. May I always be able to afford it.

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Slept Like A Top...

But I know there was "bad" stuff in my dreams which I don't remember. Slept the clock around and then looked at the clock at 11am and thought, "Go for it!" so I went to the M Scooter place. Was given a quick chat and a brochure of what they have available. Talked over financial matters again with Mum's bank about her estate(needed more details and questions answered)documentation from her bank finally arrived in the mail today.

Came home and was in good time to see the new Paddington Bear movie showing at a local church hall and all it cost me was £1. Cheaper than the local cinemas and easier to get to. Its showing at a Town Hall in 5 days but it costs £5 even there. And you have to travel there and back home.

I could've waited until it comes on mainstream TV but it filled a couple of hours and the quality of sound and picture was quite good. Projected onto a screen via a DVD player and large enough. The children present were quite well behaved too. We had sweets and drinks available at reasonable prices. Hot chocolate for 50p and children were given a free raffle ticket when they came in and a draw was held at the end for seven Easter prizes.

I forgot myself and worries for a couple of hours. The film was true to the spirit of the character and the books written by Michael Bond which many of us remember reading or having had read to us as a bedtime story.

Upon coming home I had a little "Drink" I don't make a habit of doing so, I have a beef casserole stew going in the slow cooker which I will have later. I have had a sausage roll and some bread for a snack. And a custard doughnut. And a few minutes ago a mug of coffee.

I think that I shall have a quiet relaxed doze in bed soon where its nice and cosy. I will study the brochure of mobility scooters too, I believe that I have almost all that I require to finally tie up Mum's estate and sort out everything but I expect we're still talking 4-6 weeks to be totally finished.

I'm going to try and stay positive and live in the day and not worry what the future may or may not bring.

Friday, April 03, 2015

Good Friday...

Change of plan.

I purchased a very small amount of Lamb and yesterday visited a retailer that I have heard much of but never ever been too before. It mainly sells all kinds of meat but in reality sells just about anything from fruit to vegetables to bread to cakes to cheese.

Its easier if you have a car because its on the outskirts of a sort of industrial estate though at a push with a shopping trolley and with an hourly bus service with a stop outside the premises it can be done. I'm thinking of investing in a new upright freezer and if I do that I could visit perhaps once or twice a year. Purchase all that I need perhaps buying in bulk will save me money too. Also cut down on how often I need to buy food. For now its just a thought.

I was planning on going to Durham Cathedral to attend some more Easter services but I don't feel up to it. I have slept the clock around. Had a reasonably peaceful and cosy sleep too. Also its cold, wet and horrible out there.

I've had a kind of feeling in limbo feeling. I don't feel down as such but nor do I feel chipper. But happily my mind isn't thinking too deeply nor thinking of anything in particular. But I do have a bit of one of those butterfly feelings in the pit of my stomach.

So I'm going to fill a couple of hours riding a bus and if its open as it appears to be visit a showroom that sells mobility scooters, beds, chairs and accessories and get some details, pick up a brochure if they have one. Find out what it all entails.

Yesterday, I cooked a full chicken and diced casserole beef. I was going to have some of it later but today(being Good Friday)I think I shall have some fish. Possibly have a beef stew/soup tomorrow. Eat the chicken between now and Monday and possibly consider having some of my lamb on Easter Monday. I must stay focused and keep an interest in eating as I possibly can.

I cannot see anything of particular interest on the TV and they haven't added anything special to the radio schedule for Easter either which is a pity. But by the time I return from my trip out it will be tea time anyhow and early evening. I am not planning on spending any money.

Tomorrow(and I suspect it will be packed)and may only be meant for children and families so I don't know if I will be allowed in but a local church is showing the new Paddington Bear movie and that's practically on my doorstep(and will be cheaper than it would cost to go to a fancy cinema)so I will see if I can manage to get a seat.

If the weather improves perhaps I can attend a service at the Cathedral on Sunday. Monday we're having a afternoon bingo session again.

And all being well Sunday night I will be at the usual little bingo and turn session at a club on the town. It gets me out for a couple of hours.

Right I better make tracks and go and see those scooters...plenty of buses available though during the afternoon(not so good after 6pm)but they run approx every 15-20mins during the day...well they do where I am going to...I don't need to get shaved(whiskers haven't come through yet)and I'll be dressed in minutes.

Update:So much for that plan...the internet said buses were running as normal...Wrong! Its a Sunday service and I nearly gave up and came home but once out I decided I'd go for it! Then the bus I caught decided to terminate a few stops earlier than usual(still have no idea why)Then I found though most retailers were open...the mobility scooter place was closed! Wasted journey unless you think I had a couple of hours outdoors.

Now I'm listening to favourite I remember watching on TV as a child and well into adulthood the Australian writer Clive James who as he is terminally ill and on borrowed time and only 18 years older than myself is remarkably upbeat and yet I'm not sure I'm doing myself any favours listening when you realise how infinite time is and how long any of us have. But as they say...tomorrow is another day. Perhaps I'll hop on a bus and try and go to the scooter shop again and maybe I'll see if I can see that film.