musings (201) fun Monday (76) friendship (64) K9 (13)

Saturday 31 December 2011

Gate of the Year

I said to the man who stood at the Gate of the Year,
"Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown."
And he replied, "Go out into the darkness, and put your hand into the hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light, and safer than a known way."
May that Almighty Hand guide and uphold us all.

“He'll be coming and going" he had said. "One day you'll see him and another you won't. He doesn't like being tied down--and of course he has other countries to attend to. It's quite all right. He'll often drop in. Only you mustn't press him. He's wild, you know. Not like a tame lion.” 

Quotations from C.S.Lewis
“Safe?" said Mr. Beaver."Who said anything about safe? 'Course he isn't safe. But he's good. He's the King, I tell you.”

Dark days dwindle into the past; taking with them friends who are no more...
Each year Christmas and birthday cards become fewer...tempus fugit. But I shall not turn this post into maudlin memories. Far better to concentrate on new beginnings...

That is what I wrote last year, and it's unfortunately even more appropriate now. 
As the Christmas card list shortens and the memories (tristesse) are summoned by the turn of the year. 
Farewell my dear friends, I cherish memories of times that can be no more. 
How long will it be, I wonder, before the folk missing from the list exceed the list itself?

Monday 26 December 2011

an homage to the season

Christmas Day has been and gone, lovely, peaceful just 'being'. With the warm weather the Lenten roses (hellebores) are coming into flower. So fragile looking yet promising of Spring.  

Wednesday 21 December 2011

Tuesday 13 December 2011

Saturday 10 December 2011


Today was M(1)s birthday (65), so M(2) decided she must not spend it alone. She hatched a plan, getting M(1) to take her to the library before it closed at noon, and asking me to play chauffeur.
I collected them at 12.30 and we headed for a pub lunch. This was followed by a trip to a nearby garden centre for refreshments. We had a good look round and found a craft outlet. So yours truly purchased a crochet hook to do Tunisian crochet (something I've wanted to learn for a while).
Everyone was in typical silly mood as is out wont so much fun was had by all.
M(2) still does not like the Christmas fracas, and announced triumphantly that she'd bought stamps to send her cards and they were ordinary, not the special grumble-time ones. I bought a couple of calendars, one of the Snowdon area for Dutch friends who live in Belgium and another for our 'twitcher' neighbour. 
Then I was berated (jokingly) for having a birthday on a Bank holiday, making celebration on that precise day problematic. As I said, I was well aware of it having got used to a birthday that is always a Bank holiday with no chance of anything arriving by post on the day. So, it was resolved we'd agree to go for a meal some time later next month.

Wednesday 7 December 2011

the Gas man cometh

Flanders and Swann sang comical ditties of their own composition and this is one of my favourites.
So, what has got me remembering this?
On one of his intermittent visits 'north' our neighbour arrived last weekend to find no power in the house. He arrived at our door, torch in hand to ask for help. OH dutifully went with him to see what could be done. Result? Power back on but no heating. Next day a shivering H was huddled by a log fire but his house remained cold.

OH suggested he:

  • head back south to his (warmer) other house 
  • phone the gas people
  • arrange for them to visit
  • give them our details and OH would do the necessary when they arrived.

Neighbour has a repair.maintenance contract with them and emailed us the details.
So, this morning I want shopping for groceries whilst OH waited in for the gas man. What a pleasant surprise when I returned to find their van parked outside. OH soon returned with good news, gas supply checked and approved, boiler and pump inspected. Pump declared faulty and replaced. Central heating checked out and fully functioning once more. Success!

Monday 5 December 2011

First Monday DECEMBER 5TH

Sayre says "It seems like everyone celebrates something in December. 
For the next FIRST MONDAY, tell me about what you celebrate, how you celebrate, and what your favorite tradition is during your holiday season."

"Lighten our darkness we beseech Thee oh Lord!" 
Counting down not just to Christmas, but to the shortest day...and looking forward to days lengthening once more.  
I'm looking forward to seeing M's nativity figures which will soon be on display. Note...the crib always remains empty until Christmas Day. Today, this is my favourite tradition, also seeing the Nativity scene that is on display in a nearby shopping centre.

Sadly, the Clitheroe Nativity scene I remember as a child and which was always a Christmas Delight has been targeted regularly since 2007 by mindless morons...figures have been stolen...It is doubtful whether the display will be put on in future...

On a brighter note...
Carols! Particularly Benjamin Britten's Ceremony of Carols...

Sunday 4 December 2011