Random Jottings Of Gildersleeve

My Photo
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.

Monday, August 31, 2015

We're In The Money...

Well, over the weeks you lose more than you win when going out playing bingo and having an odd drink but last night in a variety of ways I won £48*&lt:-P partybut felt obliged to buy my fellow Bingo cohorts a round of drinks. But even doing that I still covered the cost of the night and taxi fare. And was still £27 in pocket which as I have been spending a little more lately is welcome.

Again I have a fair bit of the buffet which I brought home so that saves me some time and cost of buying of food.

Not much planned for today I have to admit and bus services(Its bank holiday)means that I will stay close to home.

Yesterday went according to plan and I was entertained in Durham through the afternoon. The weather was kind. If it stays that way the final event of the weekend will hopefully be a success as it takes place in Barnard Castle with the backdrop of the ruins of the old castle. And a town still with a historic feel. But it won't surprise you if I say that is not one bus to Barnard Castle on a Bank Holiday and a quick look at a travel website suggests that if you want to go there on a Sunday for a day out there is one bus for the whole day.

It becomes ever more apparent why many people end up spending so much time at home and don't go out and that most routes just take you to shopping centres and malls. Its just luck if that town happens to have a parkm a museum or an historic place of interest to visit.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Catch Up Time...

I've found a way to get rid of my grass cuttings(if slowly)The laying down of fabric on the lawns has been delayed. I'll explain why later in this entry.

Thursday and Friday I had my supermarket shopping done early on the morning between 6am and 7am and it felt great being up and about at such an early hour. The weather was sunny and quite warm too.

OK I had not emptied my wheelie bin in a month but lots of rubbish was got rid of on Friday. Being up so early and with a few tasks completed I even went back to bed for a few hours.

I'm still generally in a good place emotionally.

Some people feel that vitamins and minerals are a waste of time but I take some even though hopefully you should get all you need from your meals via fruit, vegetables, meat and fish. I don't take many but today(well Saturday)I found some bargains.

A new vitamin/mineral tablet on offer in a reputable retailer which has more of both in their tablets(or possibly capsules)which means I can drop some that I have been buying. That saves money.  It is on promotion so is half price at present(that saved me approx £5)then because I purchased other items on a three for two offer I saved another £5 so it was like getting one item for free. The other item contains ginger, glucosamine and Chondrotin but it also includes items I usually buy seperate such as fish oil and again I no longer have to do that. Therefore I am saving money again.

So I am quite happy how that has turned out. Whilst the promotion is on and I can buy at half price and in theory get one one item for nothing I may buy some extra, Its worth the overall saving.

What I am now taking

What I have dropped

Debating what I can weigh the garden fabric down with, I need stones so may have to raid my rockery for some. Its been suggested I get myself a trowel for planting my flower bulbs or a bulb planter that I can use when standing up. So I may look into that in the next day or two.

I think that there will still be some of the oven/grills I was after in the shop so I will possibly buy that on Monday after I have been to the afternoon bingo. Buying the vitamins at the weekend meant that I had no reason to go out later in the day on Friday so I did not buy the lottery ticket either. I probably wouldn't have won so saved a couple of quid.

Saturday I traveled to Durham, a little later than planned but I was there by lunchtime. I caught the tail end of a street performer but some are appearing again later today according to the website but it would seem that they have changed the plans. The next act had to cut his performance short due to a really heavy rainstorm. That's when I went shopping and found my vitamins etc...when I returned the next act had been on and almost finished. I settled down and watched the remaining acts. 

Many of them are calling into Durham on the way back from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the two countries that seem to have the most "Street" entertainers are from Australia and the US. 

My favourite act was Adorkable Derek from Texas in the US. He was a comedy mime act, he worked with members of the audience, adults and children and ended by climbing a very high pole and doing various dangerous acrobatic stunts.

The event in Durham has been going for around nine years and I think I have been attending the last three or four. Before that I had no idea of its existence. I hope to be there again today.

Its the bingo night and with buses running a Sunday service its fortunate that the entertainment is starting a little later but coming home I may virtually be walking through my door and going back out again. So I may have to prepare my buffet early in the day before I go out and keep it in the fridge or somewhere cool. And grab it when I get home. Its mostly easy(no preparation)Crisps, crackers, tomatoes, cheese, cake so all I have to do is some quick sandwiches/buns. That's what will take the time.

Think I'll have another coffee and a couple of hours sleep and then get ready for another interesting day.

Update:The weather stayed fine all day in Durham on Sunday, quite warm too. I got myself a good view too. The votes were counted at the end of the day and considering the variety of acts over the weekend of which many were physical demanding my favourite  mentioned earlier came in at second place. So I'm not a bad judge.

Third place was taken by an escapologist who only appeared today(one performance)and an African dance/acrobatic group came first but again they only appeared today so audience figures may've been swung by the numbers present today so for Derek to get second place from appearing yesterday he did very well.

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Weather Is Behaving Itself...

No excuse for not catching up on things. Still on for a couple of days out in Durham over the weekend unless I see everything within the first day. Then potter around at home on Sunday. Monday could be a quiet one. I will probably play bingo with friends and see what special radio programmes are on over the Summer Bank Holiday again in between housework tasks. We have a special turn on Sunday night at the club(said to be a good)He/she/they perform and dress in the style of popular pop act of the 70's I believe.

I had gone to bed at a normal time earlier and had two or three hours of deep sleep, so deep it felt as though I had been drugged. It may've only lasted a few minutes but I seem to have had a very complicated dream or nightmare and I had to get up. I may stay up for a while, have a coffee and see if I can get my head down again for a few more hours.

Thursday was quite a good one, if long...I had a handful of items I wanted and being awake early, I was in the local supermarket by 6am and home, having breakfast and another couple of hours sleep by 7am. The sun was shining, the birds were singing. It was quite pleasant.

Today is wheelie bin collection day so I'll get that sorted, head out into the garden again, get some more of that fabric down on the lawns and though I said I would not, I may start to plant some of my bulbs.

I have had a quick look at that small oven/grill on the way home tonight, it looks a good little buy, its not very heavy. I may pop out and buy that today too. Oh and though I rarely buy one its a Mega Friday on the Euromillions Lottery so I will probably buy a lucky dip ticket for that too.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

What An Inexpensive Week...

regarding purchasing of food or meals. Simple can sometimes be OK. It also helps not overeating by snacking or having smaller portions. Even if you enjoy your food. That's not such a bad thing. It can also help that occasionally you are alright eating the same items for a few days at a time.

Today started(Well, I'm really talking about Tuesday now)earlier than planned. I awoke after I assume dreaming something unsettling and that cause some anxiety. So I actually got up around 4am, Had a coffee and a little snack. The day improved from then.

Plans changed and I did little of anything at all. We had another good night at our music club. Numbers were down a little but that changed nothing, Sorry to see the nights drawing in already and it being dark so early.

I thought that I may have something for supper* when I came in but I feel OK and think that I shall wait until tomorrow now. I'll probably mess about on here awhile longer and have another coffee. I've had plenty of sleep so again I'm OK on that score. Debating whether to stay close to home on Wednesday or whether to get out and see where I end up. Nothing planned.

Shopping is out unless you include the oven/grill I mentioned in an earlier post. Otherwise all I need is some medicated talcum powder, medicated cream of some kind, glucosamine tablets and bleach for the house. Which for me is quite a small amount.

*Found myself nibbling at plum tomatoes.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Oh My Goodness...

I've just parted with almost £18. Debating if I need to spend more or have enough of...some fabric that you put on a garden for a variety of uses to restrict weeds(often in borders)You can lay it down, make slits in it and put plants in those holes but the rest of the fabric can be covered in bark chippings etc...seemingly moisture will still get through to the soil but sunlight does not so weeds die off and stay dead.

There are other uses. Well I am laying it down on the lawns I cleared at the back of the house using lots of elbow grease, strimming it with a strimmer and weed killer. And being so late in the year I may leave it down during Winter and sow new grass seed in Spring next year. In the meantime it should stop old grass and weeds growing between now and then. I am assured that it can be reused as and when required. I have three rolls each being 8metres by 1.5metres. I'll see if I can get away with the three rolls I have at present. I can move it around the garden to suit its purpose. Still wondering whether to use it in the border in the front garden.

Not planning on starting that task tonight . There's not an urgency to get this done as quickly as possible.

I'm still slow and had to catch a taxi home. The rolls of fabric were not that heavy so carrying the shopping was not really a problem but I decided I wanted a ride home even though again we're only talking a couple of streets. That cost me approx half the cost of another roll of fabric.

Not much to do meal wise  as there are still plenty of "nibbles" from last evenings bingo buffet.

As I expect it to start getting dark within a couple of hours I'm staying in and resting, listening to the radio. I will decide about tomorrow when it happens. I'm still in a reasonably good frame of mind.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

I Took A Look At The Vintage Vehicle Event...

But there was only a handful of cars, I went on one bus and returned on the next. I could see them from the roadside as I alighted from the bus. I had to wait 25mins for the return bus. As I came home I passed by the freezer shop on the town and purchased bread and milk, some cooked meats for sadwiches and salads that saves shopping for a few days.

I wanted to walk home but gave in and climbed into a taxi even though its only a ride lasting a couple of streets. But when I can afford to and I benefit I'll do it(that's why I try to budget my general spending elsewhere)Had I waited until tomorrow or thought that I would be calling at the shop I may've walked slowly because I could've used my shopping trolley or rucksack.

No win at the bingo and its been raining again but nothing like last evening and the taxi driver tonight told tales of a music concert held at Hardwick Country Park in Sedgefield. Chaos regarding arrangements for getting home(He said)but we also had that very bad rainstorm with lightening and hail with winds on Saturday(mentioned in an earlier post)I don't know how the actually musical event was affected(if at all)I assume that it would be.

I have plenty of food left over for snacks over Monday(from the buffet)so that makes meal planning easy for today and beyond.

I'm thinking fruit and cereal for breakfast(more like Brunch)as I will probably have it nearer lunchtime. Resting with a favourite music programme and coffee now. But more importantly in a good place again mood wise.

I hope I can manage a few days out whilst the weather is reasonable this week and fingers crossed plans for next weekend(Public holiday weekend)and hopefully images will be posted. I am thinking of something special for Monday but that may take some planning, it could cost a fair bit but could be worth going through with it. I'll be less secretive if I decide to go. If irs successful I think they may have another go in the New Year. I hope they choose a different weekend and not always a public holiday.

I may stay home instead as I will already been to a two day event in Durham. Two days if I decide to pace myself and miss some acts on the Saturday but if I have seen everything I may not go back Sunday.

Mini Oven
I have another little gadget I may purchase this Thursday for an emergency and could use as a spare little cooker that I can use outside of the kitchen either in my bedroom or if I convert the little bedroom into a kind of mini kitchen containing a small fridge, microwave, kettle, toaster and oven/grill. Handy when you are having light meals/snacks and its the middle of Winter. And you have little or no reason to go downstairs. Its also well priced...under £20.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

The Day Went Well...

It turned out different in some ways. I was two hours later than planned but it went like clockwork. Withdrew money from the bank. Purchased theatre tickets for shows in January en route(Joe Brown concert...A new show they say and I left it so late to book/the seats went so quickly I am in the Dress Circle not the stalls. Given time its a fair bet I could see this show at another theatre and be nearer but you never know so I see them when I can.

The other is a Viennese New Year concert that I have seen these past three years and doubt it will be much different to others)Certain favourites will be played but they do vary the selections played. I journeyed to Marske to a kind of event I saw advertised but though I hope it was a success I had seen everything within 5 minutes so I caught a bus back to Redcar.

I sat and watched the sea roll in. Peaceful and restful. To be honest it seemed pretty quiet for a Saturday at the beach and also in the shops. It was warm and sunny but sun did not manage to burn off low cloud and fog over the sea.

Therefore I only took a couple of images...Perhaps I'll take more on another trip. I did post some others quite some months ago.

I had a little shopping trip in town and found some large containers but that look like those beakers with screw tops on them so they can be used to store liquid and dry food in, They are OK for microwave use too. And can be used as...beakers(4 for £1.99) Four little containers(300grams each) again that can be used in the microwave with strong lids(again for storing food)same price. Either ideal to take out for a picnic in a cool bag/box/rucksack or OK in a fridge. For £3.99 a decent food flask with thermos type lining which can keep food hot or cold for up to 9 hours. Also has two internal containers. Quite pleased with them.

I went back to the sea and sat awhile longer. Then caught a bus back to the bus station in Middlesbrough just missed the connection to Darlington to get me back to my town but another came along 20mins later. So all was fine. And in Darlington I found the connection to my town waiting for me.

Popped into the supermarket here for cake and crisps for tomorrows usual buffet for my bingo group and as I walked home finally it rained and once indoors some lightening too but nothing to really speak of and as its so warm hopefully it will cool things a little.

Oh also purchased some double sided adhesive pads for fastening/securing items to walls/into albums etc...that's because as went out for the day I found my doorbell in two pieces(the main part)was on the path outside the front of the house and it had been raining. Luckily the casing was not damaged but the inside was wet. I soaked the dampness up with a tissue. It did not seem broken internally and when the button was pressed it still lit up but no ringtone.

A bit more work and it started working again. I have secured it again and it seems good and solidly attached but that's why I purchased the pads for the future.

I'm resting and have had coffee. I may still cook myself some fish and chips with mushy peas before the end of the night too.

Update:As the night has gone on there has been much rain, a little more lightening but not as much of the latter as some areas near me. I had around four hours of deep sleep missing some programmes I was listening to. I may still get some more yet. Probably have another weak coffee in a few minutes. I've had some toast.

I'll stay close to home I think...do some housework. prepare the buffet, not much to do. I'll pop out later and see if the vintage vehicle event is still on or has been curtailed. If still on hopefully I'll miss any showers. I'll see if I can get any images.

Got A Little Mixed Up...

The event on town of vintage vehicles began on Friday...but not really. The vehicles started to arrive but its mainly today and Sunday that they are on site.

The singer who is appearing in the evening I am fortunate that he plays my music club quite regularly so I have seen him a fair few times already. I am hoping to have a look on Sunday.

Today, I am leaving early for a bus ride(two hours)much quicker by car but this includes three bus changes and waiting around in a bus station. The same coming home but I am going to the coast to place known as Marske.

They have an event planned promoting local businesses/food and entertainment(there's a brass band too)it runs between 10am-4pm so if I am not tired and its interesting enough and the weather is kind I can see it all.

Sadly, due to bus issues even if I wanted to stay into the evening I am unable to, I have to be away no later than 6pm otherwise my journey involves more miles and time being added to the journey and where I can be home by 8pm it will be nearer Midnight.

If I had more money/won the lottery there is not much I actually want. As long as I have decent food, a roof over my head, am warm when its cold the only thing I would add to my wish list would be that I can stay out later when I do go out and be able to afford the cost of a taxi as/when buses are not running and I am not talking of doing it that often or talking advantage of being able to. It is a popular area but other areas on the coast not that far from here I can catch a bus upto a couple of hours later and less hanging around in bus stations or trying to connect to other services. I'm going anyhow.

So have to be out of here by around 7.30am. Luckily being a Saturday there is a bus that early(it would not be so on a Sunday)

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Still Unsure What's Going On...

with the camera and memory card. I will have to sort it all out soon as I have other events I want to take the camera to. The easy option may be to buy a new memory card as then if its the camera I can still use the new memory card inside a new camera. I don't want to buy one but if that's what I have to do. I am fortunate that at present I can.

Seems pointless attempting a repair if its the camera.

Yesterday was slow. I wanted to go out but the weather was "Yukky" and by 8pm it was so dark and dismal but I did go the local supermarket just for a break and came home with shaving stuff and a marmalade. That exciting. Coming home it was around 10pm and most houses were in darkness or people were already going to bed or perhaps doing what people do in bedrooms these days.

The streets were deserted. It had been raining but turned into that misty spray type rain that hangs about in the air and gets in your face. There was a cold wind blowing and it could've been a November day.

Its messed up the task of gardening...again. It could even mess up weekend plans for me and those putting on outdoor events. We shall have to see.

So its housework. Possibly making the effort of having something nice to eat. And lots of coffee or tea. Bingo tonight.

Thinking of booking a couple of theatre shows for the new year. Once paid for that's it. There isn't too much attracting me at present so some money saved there.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

A Good But Long Day...

Made it to a political rally and listened to Jeremy Corbyn speak in Middlesbrough Town Hall, it was arranged at short notice. I'm biased he talks sense to me. Is something that has been missing in politics. The weather could not have been worse. Torrential rain all day. They say that 1,000 people were in the audience. He received a standing ovation too.

For all the rant about public transport when it works as it should it works well. All the connections worked reasonably well but I guess that's OK when its not evening or Sunday service.

I was back in time to attend the regular music club on my town too. Even having a window of 15 minutes between buses so I could do a quick shop. If it stays like this I will remain home today. Its too wet to garden(again)and it needs to dry out anyhow. I wondered if the retailer I purchased my flower bulbs from would have something else in a larger branch but they had not even put out their stock as in my town.

I hope the weather improves by Friday as there is some kind of vintage vehicle/bus event on the town in the afternoon and the following day(Officially its free)but I think its to raise money for the Scouts organisation. By bus its only five minutes away from my home(its behind the building I go to on Sundays for the Bingo)

I'm not sure if my camera or the memory card has failed as it kept misbehaving tonight and I thought that I had lost all the images I took today at the political meeting and at one point everything else.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Feel Like A Bit Of A Rant...

on my old favourite of public transport.

I am hoping to go to Middlesbrough today via Darlington. Two big towns in the North East of England. I can catch a bus practically every twenty minutes there and back(that may too often)but OK that's how they run.

However, after approx 19.45 the only way to Darlington is to take a detour, change bus routes a few times, adding many extra miles and hope the connections are on time. An approx 45 minute journey then takes 2hrs 20mins. Perhaps longer.

I don't mind the service being less frequent after a certain time but surely they could run perhaps a bus hourly so you do not have to leave quite so early. It stops you from staying longer and seeing some event that may be taking place especially in the Summer.

You then think I'll catch a local train instead but after 19.55 there are no trains until the next morning.

Yet the trains travel past Darlington to my town and beyond. If you could manage to reach Darlington  there are buses approx every half hour to my town until approx 11pm. But its that first step that is the hurdle. One of many examples. I have a friend that lives in the Middlesbrough area and after quite early on she cannot get a bus back to her estate which is reasonably close by. So even the locals are not taken care of. And this is not a rural area.

Monday, August 17, 2015

I Know I Feel Like My Old Self...

when I don't feel the urge to go out and am happy to stay indoors. That's where I am at present and when I can say that I accept that its so and I don't analyse why. I welcome those times.

No one won the bingo yesterday night but I did win £10 on a domino card and so my night out only cost me £4. That was as though all I paid for was a shared taxi to and from the place and the admission fee. The win has meant that my other regular events are almost free this week.

I came home with much of my buffet so that allowed me supper and today snacks and I still have food to use that I did not even take with me so I have benefited and not lost out financially either.

I am fortunate that I can(and I may not always be able to)but I did discover that a big retailer has started selling flower bulbs so I paid out £28 on a variety of tulips, crocus and others. I suspect I will need many more but they'll give me colour for many years to come when planted and I can now see what else comes into the retailer and buy anything else I need as and when. And I have up to December to plant them. Most will start showing their faces from March to May and beyond. And soon I'll have chance to plant flowers again in the tubs for the Autumn.

Some will go into tubs and containers and be transferred into the garden. At the right time I can lift them and divide.

Its Monday so a night of radio listening and resting. I have plans for Tuesday and Wednesday but I won't go into greater detail in case they don't come off. And its something to talk about later.

Hopefully I may have something nice to eat before I go to bed, if not I'll try and have a decent breakfast and perhaps take something with me on my day out.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Sunday Already...

Its the early hours but I have not one but two beans and sausage bakes in the oven and in approx 15 minutes I will be having them for a late supper. What have I done since the last entry?

Well, politically(and this will mean very little for anyone not into politics)and reading possibly abroad but on Friday night I was in my town's Working Men's Club as they are known(my first time ever I think)and I was watching a speaking event by one of the candidates in the Leadership campaign to choose the new leader of the Labour party.

I have all but made my mind up who I am choosing and I have paid my fee for the privilege of doing so whether my vote makes the difference or not. I am trying to have an open mind and listen to the other candidates. Because my area had the last Prime Minister of the Labour Party in recent years and who was massively successful but divided the country especially after he left office because of some very big world events(War)and he was seen as copying or being similar to another Prime Minister but for the Conservative party.

The leadership campaign has thrown up many anomalies and three of the candidates are seen as being similar to each other, The outsider is at present attracting many ex party supporters or people who felt ignored and forgotten and see that the party could change direction and be what they feel it no longer represents value wise.

So I saw Liz Kendall who is trailing behind everyone. For me she is too much like the other parties not as I see Labour or want it to be. I heard passion and a good speaker but no real meat on the bones of policies she would bring.

I haven't seen the other two Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper but I may try and see her on Monday(she's speaking in Durham)Andy isn't anywhere but Jeremy Corbyn who was the under dog and now leads is speaking on Tuesday and I may try and see him for the second time, I saw him at the Durham Miner's Gala but it was a very quick speech.

Who knows what will happen, what the right decision is for the party or the country at large. We have a difficult time ahead upto and beyond 2020.  Politics is a personal thing to each of us and some will agree and others be against my take on things. Interesting times.

Today I have nothing planned. I may stay home or just take off. The only official task is what I have been doing for some time. The bingo and entertainment in the evening and putting a small buffet together. I'm doing a little less this time...Cherry or plum tomatoes, cheese, crisps, possibly ham or turkey baps and a small treat perhaps a small cake. If I put that together early I won't be rushing things and I can come home a little later if I am out at all.

All I have to do is wash and shave. First buses leave my town around 8.30am(I think)I would just have to decide where to go and how far.

Friday, August 14, 2015

I Have Paint And Brush...

Well whatever you call the stuff you put on fence panels. I do wonder if I have enough, some is a golden colour, the other is very dark. If I'd known it would show up again at half price I may've stuck to one colour. Anyhow, I am in two minds(I will have to be quick)whether to buy extra as its on offer again and I can have two cans for £10 rather than £10 for one. If its not used immediately its there for another time.

The neighbours put a very dark brown(almost black)fence down one side of my garden. The original fence that the builders put at the very back of the garden is very dark. I'm thinking before all the shrubs grow I could repaint the back of the fence they put in that faces me and also the back fence. That may use two cans at least.

The rest that I am responsible for is more of a golden colour and that would use the other two.

Rain stopped the garden plans on Thursday but the other tasks were completed.

I have to get the bin out this morning and that's probably all I have to do officially. Wondering if I should go for a ride out, Summer is speeding by too quickly. Still on for my day out on Saturday.

When I came in from Bingo I had a ready meal but did not add anything to it and it hit the spot, Chicken and mushroom hotpot in a creamy sauce. I'm pottering about on the web but not tired I have had plenty of sleep this past week but I may have a lie down and if I doze off that's fine.

I have had toast and coffee and am fine. My knee is behaving itself too.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

I Have Been On Twitter All Night...

I wasn't paying attention to the time. Well an odd time is acceptable. And if you feel well and happy...go for it! I think I'll have a coffee and turn in for a few hours,

Update:Have crept back onto Twitter tonight and may have a late one but I have slept for ages so I am not tired.

I have decided later today(Thursday)to tidy the house(may take an hour)trim the hedge at the front of the house(just needs a small amount of work)better than it getting out of hand. The lawn is quite short but I'll attack that too,

The shrubs in the back garden are doing well. Especially those against the fence the neighbours put in. Wondering if I should trim and leave them as they are or try to move them so there is more space between them, I am seeing colour(blooms)greenery and golden foliage.

I will get the weedkiller out again, the grass is quite short still.

I think as I have improved I will attempt to paint the fences next week. I have some fruit plants I may put against a fence too which hopefully offer me and the birds some food eventually(Tayberry, Blueberry, Raspberry and Blackberry)I want next year a cottage garden area that will attract birds, bees and butterflies.

If I can keep the garden so I only occasionally have to mow lawns or have someone do that little task for me that will be fine by me. Perhaps I'll consider a little table and take a chair into the garden too. And enjoy my work.

I'm feeling good and its been quite a good day but I did go out this evening and filled three hours somehow. Did some people watching, a little shop ready for Sunday's Bingo buffet, I purchased one of my fruit plants.

If the weather is good I do plan to find somewhere to travel to and spend the whole day out. Initially, there is a day of Roman Historic events at a park. Its not free but £5 isn't bad. Getting there is not such a problem but if I don't catch one of the early buses that come this way, it will add to the cost as it may mean catching a taxi. Unless I decide to go to the coast or find another event.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Its A Happy But *Unexciting Tuesday...

I'm feeling good, Mind is behaving and the knee issue is almost sorted. No inflammation, virtually no tenderness. The sun is missing outside but its warmish. I have some tasks to do around the house(light housework)and not much else.

If I am Missing in Action hopefully its nothing more than the day going by very slowly.

Update:Still in a good place. The weather is OK, its dull as we reach 5pm and cooler. I've tidied upstairs...again. It became untidy when I looked for lost payment cards last night when I wanted to pay my bills off.

I don't feel particularly hungry but probably should have something to eat. I could make a meal from scratch, I could combine a ready meal with other ingredients but I think I shall just get a ready meal out of the fridge and have it as it is. Its food, I can do it in the microwave in minutes. Save on the washing up, save using the main oven and it only cost me £2. The other day someone said you've spent £18 on ready meals!!! But that's 9 meals, that's only £2 per meal. I haven't eaten them all yet nor had them one day after another. And if they last across a month and are supplemented with other meals I don't think that is too bad.

*Unexciting can be good. Being content takes some beating.

Scrub That...

Still doing well and able to sleep. Another person(who works in a pharmacy)suggests a reduction/change of Statin(if that could be the reason for the knee problem)so I'll give it another couple of days. It happens quite often that a change of drug is considered and works. Its been suggested a better time to take Statins is at night.

So I was having a lovely snooze and woke around 8pm(perhaps I was dreaming?)but I was a bit uneasy so as it was still light outside and my mobility was improved I went out and paid my rent at the local off license just before they switched the Pay Point terminal off. I have another bank card which works at the bank so I went to ATM and printed off a mini bank statement. All this is possible at the bottom of my street.

To avoid shopping later today I purchased some basics before the discount supermarket closed. Sea salt, cheese, bread and cheese straws.

I felt as different again when I came in. I made a mug of coffee and listened to my radio music programmes.

They've been going on about the closure of pubs and nightclubs and asking for help to see that they can be saved but we have to realise that times change. Sometimes for good, sometimes we have to adapt or after a time they become popular again. They blamed television for the demise of the cinema years ago, it was also blamed for the reduction of the popularity of radio and going out to pubs, clubs and restaurants.

Now the reason will probably be given as the internet. I can think of many reasons...Many places of entertainment/social interaction are too expensive in comparison to incomes of the many. The hours many find themselves working and again many companies are more strict about employees drinking and coming to work the next day(health and safety)in my own area most of the nicer venues are in neighbouring towns and for me that would mean using taxis/public transport not always inexpensive, not always available for going to, coming home. I have seen larger towns practically dead as early as 8pm-9pm and pubs practically empty. The only two days that seem to be busy are Fridays and Saturdays.

Priorities have changed for many, they get entertainment at home. They can buy cheaper alcohol and share it with friends at home. Also tastes change.

My own town and the immediate area after 10pm there is one 24/7 supermarket open and any local pub will be closed by 11pm(if not before)

And locally(it may different in other parts of the town)but you'll be lucky to see anyone staying up much past 10pm. There is not even the flickering of a TV screen in a dark bedroom. Recently, I am often the only person who stays up in the early hours. At best I am sometimes kept company by two other neighbours in houses in a street at the back of my garden. Otherwise everywhere is in darkness.

I'm not really aware of the 24/7 society I keep hearing of. Though I think we have a couple of factories that work through the night. Not that many though.

The area is pretty dead between 11pm and 5am or even longer unless you are stacking shelves/accepting deliveries in the early hours. Even the train service on the main line seems dead through the night and if I wanted to go say from Darlington to Bournemouth by coach(unless its a holiday)I have two choices leave and travel through the night or be prepared to arrive around Midnight. Years ago I remember leaving at a more reasonable time and having more than a couple of journeys.

We seem to have gone back over the older I become.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Improvements Continue...

It would appear to be gout. And I know that we are all different but one of my taxi drivers suffers gout and he mentioned about how it affects his joints and it matches what I have had these past days. He then told me that he takes a Statin tablet and a side effect of it is...inflamed joints and yes, I have been taking a Statin for perhaps a fortnight.

I shall have to see if that is to blame and whether I am taken off it or given an alternative. Or that my body will settle down and get used to it. My knee is warm but nothing like it was, the redness reduced and not so tender to the touch. Only one dose of painkillers today and I suspect I will be taking no more. Movement is more freer.

The weather is quite pleasant now...a little windy but the breeze is welcome as its quite warm and humid. But sadly there is nowhere I wish to go so late in the day.

Better than earlier in the day when we had some heavy but brief showers. By the time you attempted to get a brolly up or seek shelter you were already soaked. I decided on a taxi for the trip to the bingo with my sore knee and the rain but as there were so few at the bingo today by the time I paid for my books, the taxi and I had to share a taxi home today I was 70p out of pocket. At least I won a house where the prize money was the biggest amount on offer and it filled a few hours.

I did my small shop at lunchtime too, some strawberries, cherry tomatoes and milk. If I caught short for bread I won't worry about making my own for now(perhaps get back into that in the Winter when I am home more)I do have some bread buns.

I have to pass the supermarket tomorrow night when going to the music club so I can call in and buy that then. I will avoid the garden again until I am sure the weather can be relied on and my knee is better so I shall probably just listen to the radio and take it easy. I am feeling reasonably happy too.

Just have to decide what to eat later. Lots to choose from both fresh or ready meals, fruit, veg or grains.

Sunday, August 09, 2015

You Can Speak Too Soon...

The pain and agony became worse as the night wore on...I managed troubled sleep(if you can call it that)and at 9am gave in and took painkillers, gout meds and put on more cream.

I don't like giving in...the weather isn't bad. I so want to go and see that event in Durham. There's still a couple of hours to make up my mind. I think I will have to admit defeat. The way I feel I may call off the bingo tonight.

At least there are no shows planned until September and the next "Big" event in Durham falls at the end of August when hopefully I'll be OK again.

You never know what is best, light exercise or resting. I am happy that the painkillers etc...have taken the edge off.

If I can think of anything else to add...I will.

Update:The bingo is on, nothing else. So far no extra treatment since earlier. Less than yesterday. I did rest and managed a few hours proper sleep. The weather has stayed fine even if the sun isn't shining. Being sensible may see me improve quicker.

I know if you are passionate about sport they have as much right to access the media but the local radio service is carrying an after the game phone-in and the football team is now in a lower league division. I have left the radio on the station ready for the music but its one of the worst phone-ins I have heard even though I appreciate I am not interested. It appears no other game falls on a Sunday thankfully.

The callers have little or nothing to say and just repeat what the previous caller said and don't even offer what could be called "Armchair" fan solutions. "We're not scoring goals" "We've got to get into a better position on the field!" Stating the obvious. Best call has just happened when the person said "Pessimism is a live and well!" But before he could expand on the point the host of the programme went into a long winded response stopping the caller from being able get his views aired. Its only the first game of the season and at least it was a draw.

I'll shave around 5pm, put a new shirt on and get the buffet together for tonight and do some more music listening.

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Almost Ten Thirty PM...

and I am ready for bed. Its been a long day. It turned out that I did not need to go my friend's home as early as I did but because I was "running" late and not comfortable I decided to use a taxi. There was a possibility that they were going on the hospital visit in the afternoon but in the end they went in the evening.

It saved me walking to a supermarket for milk. Then to the bus stop, then walking to the house. The taxi took me to within half a street of where I was going, I popped into a convenience store for milk so was there within seconds.

I'm still not right and I cannot say what has improved matters individually or collectively. But over the day I have had five painkillers. And they are strong! The first of the drug for gout(I doubt that would work that quickly)I found some gel I had been given among other ingredients it contains(Glucosamine, Indian Frankincense and Horse Chestnut)and put two small applications on the troublesome knee.

The knee improved and the hot feeling reduced. Its creeping back a little now as I head for bed but if it continues to do the magic I'll give it a try again tomorrow, The pain reduced and the knee is not as tender to the touch.

I now have another tube of a slightly different formula(Glucosamine, Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid, Rose Hip and Arnica)If any of the above has helped that's fine by me. I am only allowed a five day course of the gout medication(a course of ten tablets)and there is the suggestion that drug is less successful when you are on a Statin.

I am not flinching when rising from a chair or if I kneel or have to attempt getting up from the floor but the tenderness could be moving to the side of the knee now, It still looks red. I may drink some cherry juice too.

But I should sleep better tonight and if the weather is good tomorrow, the treatment continues to work I shall do what I missed doing today. There is a free event on the green/around Durham Cathedral connected to the exhibition of the Magna Carta. The people are dressed in medieval costumes and also showing skills of the time.  As it starts a little later I can leave here not as early and its all due to be finished by 4.30pm which gives me time to get home and ready for the bingo in the evening.

If its any good I'll take some images and perhaps post some on here.

Update:Three hours of restful sleep so far. I had a drink and am turning in again but though its been difficult here is an image of that knee and its redness as best as I am able. The heat is still dissipating. The following site gives many ideas of what the causes could be(some worrying/some not so worrying)but seeing gout has been mentioned, that is what I am sticking with...or possibly pseudogout and haemarthrosis.  NHS Choices Seeing I have had it since Thursday and its improving I am not thinking bad things.

Friday, August 07, 2015

What A Horrible Dull Day...

At least I am indoors. I struggled out late in the day. The knee is not improving. It aches, it throbs. I will see if I can find some muscle cream or take some pain killers.

I came back with a couple of rugs and three fruit shrubs from Aldi's. I tried to check my bank balance when out and for the first time in my life...the ATM kept my card. It did not warn me or ask me to re-enter my pin number.

Work is out for the weekend.

My night is dedicated to one of the few times I bother to switch on my TV and from 9pm until the early hours I am watching a documentary and concert dedicated to Frank Sinatra. The concert is a new one live from the 2015 Proms at the Albert Hall in London with the John Wilson Orchestra and Seth McFarlane singing Sinatra.

I shall drink coffee/tea perhaps have something to eat or have some biscuits. Its a change.

Thursday, August 06, 2015

What A Softie...

I have done little today and think that's how it will be for the weekend. My knees give me trouble at the best of times but at present they are very tender and hurting when doing nothing.

So the garden is out this weekend, not planning a trip anywhere but I have food(Fruit, veg, meat, fish, cereal, bread, milk, fruit juice, tea, coffee and water)Have I missed anything?

I gave in and purchased some microwaveable ready meals too. How easy is that? I don't have to eat them every day and can supplement with other meals/ideas. Having said that it means the main evening meals are only costing approx £2.

Did I mention the dog my neighbour has next door. I know that I have...the one that howls when she's at work, the one that often howls in the night. I thought that it was quiet these past few months but I haven't seen her to talk to but tonight she was doing the garden as I went to the bingo. So I asked. It passed away on April 8th. She has no plans to get another with working full time. I wish it no harm and I know how people get attached to their animals. But if she's working I think its only fair that no animal is left for hours and from my point of view I was tired of hearing it through the walls.

The other event...there was a motor biker riding around a small amount of ground at the bottom of my street where there is some greenery and old trees tonight and he thought that he was being clever, no crash helmets, he had a young child hanging onto him. Someone was there with a digital camera taking a video of the incident and telling the biker he was going give the video to the police and this made the biker ride around all the more, even going up to the person with the camera and talking to the him. Also being defiant.

As I came home tonight, a police car was outside the house of the cameraman so I guess they are taking a statement/looking at the video. It may get on the local police website/twitter feed/into the local press...we'll see. I have seen someone have their bike taken away before(not for riding in this area)The land is not that large and is surrounded by houses/flats. He did not pick an area where he'd be less likely to be seen.

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

I May Have A Virus...

I awoke on Tuesday sweating but once up and about I felt fine. Its been a long day with my friend and I must admit to being tired and ready for bed. Finally, going to bed now and I have slight sore throat. I hope I shall feel OK when I wake and I also do not sleep in as it is the day of my trip.

If I still feel sore I'll try to find something soothing to ease my throat. So far no cough and no cold. If I think the place we are going is worth taking some images of/it is allowed I'll post some later.

Update:I think I am going to be OK, I have had some sleep and I have time for at least another three hours. Just have to shave. I will buy some milk before I catch the coach(an advantage of living so close to a 24/7 supermarket)saves me shopping after I come home. The weather seems fine at present but we're on a coach and where we are going there isn't any walking to be done. So rain should not affect the day, as we are under cover.

Update2:I slept longer before going and it was so easy so buy the milk on the way home. I am tired so am taking it easy. It was a good day but long. The food was acceptable(as good as the meals I cook for myself at home)and the journey there and back to the venue went well. The "Live" entertainment was basically a "DJ" he sang to backing tracks(as most people do)but often seemed to be off key.

As most of the people are there to dance, socialise and celebrate Birthdays etc...few were paying that much attention anyhow. Honestly I see better entertainment at my music club for free and the bingo club on a Sunday.

But having criticised...it was a change and a different way to spend an afternoon. I would consider going again.

Monday, August 03, 2015

How Did The Day Look When I Woke...

Not much different to be honest to what I expected.

I could not wake up. How sleepy was I? Well, I won a house at the bingo(only £3)but I missed it. However, I did still win another house and a line. Smiley

I gave up on the possibility of an unusual night of cinema happening locally because I have seen the film on TV but the only difference is that probably the only existing member of the cast still living is doing a question and answer session before or after the film "Carry On Screaming" That's Fenella Fielding.

I have decided to stay in. Pace myself and it makes a difference if you feel reasonably positive. Its coming in dull again so I don't know if it is the nights drawing in or we're heading for another downpour. Sunny nights are nice but if the weather isn't great you don't mind staying in so much.

A quiet night of radio listening ahead and I am thinking of having a ham salad for my evening meal.

I gave in today and purchased a salad spinner which I thought will last years and be useful for washing salads and fruit. I also purchased a replacement pocket wind up LED torch as the one I have seems to be failing, a new mousemat and a dry erase board with magnets but I'm using that for putting my bingo books when I play in future. Taking the salad spinner out of the equation it only came to £4.50 which seems reasonable.

I have been thinking about my fish and chips tomorrow and what I decided I would have when I go on the coach trip on Wednesday(I had to sign a plan a few months ago)and I have a feeling I picked fish and chips so I may be having it two days running.

I am not eating much because I may've said already I find it a struggle to eat big meals and I tend to go for hours between meals or graze throughout the day. So if my ham salad is nice tonight I can wait until tomorrow lunchtime and see that meal as breakfast and dinner combined.

Did I say I tend to choose large shirts/jumpers/t-shirts these days...I like the extra room but I have tried medium lately and think that they still fit and that may offer me more choice and variety. And when they are only from a charity shop and costing £1 it is OK if I am unable to wear them that often if at all. After I am larger than I used to be. But not obeseSmileyI won't be doing this anytime soon.

Sunday Was A Nothing Day...

The day passed but how I have no idea. It rained off and on so I left the washing on the line in the garden. Its only a shirt, underwear and a teatowel.

The weeds are dead I believe and will be easily cut/removed. I whacked a couple of them and they fell apart. What I need now is decent weather and a day or two where I have nothing happening.

At 5pm yesterday it was so dark and horrible I had to put a light on indoors and consider putting on an extra jumper or shirt.

I thought I had left enough time to get ready and put my buffet together for the night out but I was still cutting it fine with only minutes to spare.

None of us won but I did win a domino card and despite numbers being down I won £10 so the night only cost me £3(that's the cost of the shared taxi between us there and back)so it was an inexpensive night.

Much of my buffet came back with me and as I did not eat much at the club it was like my supper. And I still have some for later today. I could have breakfast(fruit and cereal)and around lunchtime finish off the buffet as a light snack.

Then its an afternoon of bingo...again. A chat, a mug of tea and a biscuit, scone or a piece of cake. A couple of hours of company.

Tuesday keeping my friend company(I get free fish and chips)so I won't be eating much from tonight and probably nothing on Tuesday morning. Music Club in the evening and then the coach trip on Wednesday. So the earliest I can really try and catch up on anything is Thursday.

I usually have tea when I am at my clubs or out somewhere but since Mum passed away I make coffee but tonight I actually had tea so I will probably vary my drinks again. And I could very well go back to having something like hot chocolate again for an evening choice.

I'm getting some pains, they could be caused by the statin I am now on but I'm still giving it a trial. It may have nothing to do with it, when you have pain already how do you know. My left shoulder is giving me a bit of trouble so I think that I may consider going to bed and resting, have a tea and take a couple of painkillers.

We'll see how the world looks when I wake up or its time to rise and get involved once more.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

I'm Not Sure That I Am Doing This Right...

I paid approx £3.50 for a chicken and cooked it in the slow cooker but for almost the same price in the discount supermarket Aldi's and its only a little bit smaller I can buy a cooked chicken. No cooking and all done for me. I may start to look at it differently. I'm saving the cost of the energy too. If I buy one when I need it I don't even have to store it in my fridge.

I said that I have coolers to take food if I am out on a day trip. Usually I eat little or I am near a shop but I have a big(ish)cool bag(purchased perhaps two years ago)which you put blocks you have frozen in the freezer but now I have smaller/cheaper versions and which one I choose will depend on what I am taking and where I am going.

These are already insulated with a kind of foil but I can add those blocks and one actually contains a gel that freezes between the layers of the bag(requiring no blocks)The selection below cost me £5.50(one says its worth £25)I paid £2.99 but who knows? I got some spare freezer blocks, they came in at around £1 for three. If I can find those I have already I have seven. And some really tiny one's(3)which cost me 79p and are not solid and would work better in the smaller bags.

At least I have all my food sorted for my home and the buffet on Sunday. If I make the effort Saturday is the day to travel because the buses run more or less as they do during the week Sundays are limited which is a pity.

Lets see what I decide to do.

I mentioned the sad news about someone at my music club. Today by chance I discovered that the person who looked after me and Mum for a number of years and was Mum's odd job man and gardener has passed away. I could not find mum's address book so I generally only knew him as George. But there were enough clues in the thank you notice in the free newspaper of the town for me to release that he has passed away. I did not even know he was ill. He helped me even on the day of Mum's passing at the care home. That was just over three years ago. 

Update:I've spent ages looking to see if I could see any reference to his passing or funeral in the local press and gone back as far as six weeks and had no joy, so the the thank you is all that I know. Maybe they did not place a notice in the papers. I know I didn't just in the free paper of the town. Even the Co-op said with few if any friends/family alive anyone who knew Mum were living on the town or had been contacted by phone so a notice in a regional paper was un-necessary.

You'll also know from this update I did not go anywhere. That leaves a decision, do I go out tomorrow. Knowing that its Sunday service. How far can I travel, the first bus is around 8.30am and I have to be home no later than 7pm. Pushing it I could allow two hours there and back and that would give me five hours at my destination. We'll see.

Tuesday I'm baby sitting*...well, staying with my special needs friend again as his Father goes into hospital once more for a big and dangerous operation delayed from a few months ago and someone needs to keep him company as the rest of his family will be taking his Father to the hospital.

I am out on Wednesday at a place called Millstones near Harrogate(I have never heard of it before) which was arranged by the little bingo club I go to(they've paid the cost of the coach/bus out of funds)but it still cost a fair amount for the day out(but we get a three course meal, entertainment and some bingo)and the trip there and back. And as we paid approx 15 weeks ago that's only like £1 a week and that way you don't miss it so much. Its a change, all we can hope is that the weather is good. They have a gift shop but I am not planning on buying anything for myself unless I am thinking of possibly a Christmas gift and have to keep it until then.

*Wrong choice of word but I won't change it to put myself in a good light. See the comments that accompany this post. When written I wasn't even associating the term to him and I probably meant to write something like house sitting.