Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Bridteacher was always Fileygardener really

One of the first graphics I ever used in the cyberworld, Alices sketch of a Cardoon
I started my Bridteacher blog in 2006 as an outlet for my rants. This was before the days of built in stats , and the platform was not as easy as it is now. For one thing I didn't have broadband   or a digital camera. I had no idea how to insert images or even understand those magical 640x380 numbers. It has come full circle.  I dont bother always to scale down my huge files in Gimp, I fully understand what copyright and file sharing mean, and yet am best friends with Google images. I certainly never read the blogs of anyone else in those days. So Bridteacher it was .
I had dabbled with Frontpage in 2001, and what remains of my first efforts are still there to behold. Lycos has long gone . My first efforts would not pass the last module at Yorkshire Coast Colleges web-building course ; All that going right across the screen , and dubious links. Simon Rudiger my mentor on Filey Parish Blog had a real aversion to broken links. I think they show the human side. My first efforts were styled Fileygardener. I have decided to go back to that defining title. The bridteacher url will stay. I am doing this for me. You will find me if you want to truly look.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Who wants to be a millionaire

I haven't seen anything new yet. 
We are warm and cosy in our sitting room .  We are alone with Kiaora Cat and our television set.  Samson  is still sporting his festive red ribbon, and though not watching TV is listening to the Cole Porter songs with us, his back arched against the radiator.
 We have not had the car out for 5 days.I have used 5  drums of salt clearing a path to the dustbin. Scarborough Borough Council do not usually bother to grit our Filey roads and paths. This year has been an exception. A week ago a slight sling of grit on the footpaths was applied. 
We have registered -1 to -14 for a week. It has not been above.  I have dripped clothes dry on the shower rail, removing my Thermal long johns quickly when the a crunch on the ice outside the  back door announces callers.
The ground is definitely hard as iron so the carol words have been ringing true this year.I realise that most of the carols lyrics bear absolutely no  resemblance to real life conditions for most of my Christ masses, but this year never a truer word and all that...

Filey has been true to 'In the bleak midwinter', We have never sung it so many times. I looked thro all the lyrics on my Bethlehem  Carol Sheet and have been reviewing the words. I have been remembering 2 wonderful trips to Israel, and the heat of Jericho, Bethlehem and Jerusalem.  We decided that the Nativity on BBC 1 must have been filmed somewhere with a moorish background, as the windows were islamic looking. Canon Edward suggested this first.  He was right.  It was filmed in Morocco (BBC iplayer)
I am so used to singing all those familiar carol lyrics without thinking . I so agree with Ruth Gledhills comment last week in the Times
 'After half a century of sitting through church nativities, I am bored to tears with Mary and Joseph and plastic baby Jesus . My heart sinks at the thought of those eternal carols  yet again........It (the BBC nativity) turns out to be one of the best written, cinematically magical tragi-comic religious dramas ever broadcast on television.'

So whilst I sit here unable to get anywhere , with family plans on hold, watching evergreen wholesome films, my highlight of the season* so far has been the BBC offering. I will be happy to watch it every year.

*Not for purists , but Christmas for me starts with 9 lessons and Carols .

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Insomnia Blog 3

Once again.
I have prayed through an alphabet of names. I did Kate Middleton for K, could not do anything for U so did Ursula Andress. I hope she is alive, as I dont pray for dead people.
I have been downstairs and made Horlicks and eaten Cashew nuts which were to go with Christmas drinks.
I have perused a map Of Bradford Buses incase @nickbaines  wants to know anything , but realised he will have a limo and does not have a bus pass to get to Bombay Stores or Saltaire, my 2 favourite places around Bradford.
I have finished my James Patterson novel. It was awfully good. The truest words I have ever written.
I have looked at the Mac Box Set sent me as a gift to update this old thing, but think its beyond me at 2 in the morning, although Time Machine sounds so alluring.
I have my warmest gilet over my dressing gown.
Ill have a quick look at Facebook and see if @garryrutters awake. No , but my sister has put the date wrong on her wall post.
Shall I put the slow cooker on  and  do a stew. The thought of waking up , hopefully at 7ish to the smell of beef is more than I can bear.
I will look through my Redwall novels . No I want something funnier. Sweet Thursday or Just William then, or maybe Cold Comfort farm again. Ive just remembered A Marcus Didius Falco on the shelf, heavy to hold in bed, but funny from page 1 with a map.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Miniature marinated Figs-dynamite at dinner parties

Who could be without a jar of these delicacies? 
We have been pondering the jar. We have been enjoying the implications, intended or otherwise of the dynamite in the jar. 
Longtime Readers of Bridteacher will know that we do not give presents at Christmas , except to the school age children in the family. We do not give cards either except to friends far away. 

So  we have had so much enjoyment and hilarity opening the the unchristmas present from Rachel and Robert. A thank-you for the use of our beach hut .

We have enjoyed the unchristmas present so much I am sharing it with all my friends. Firstly R and R had no idea that Figs are a long standing joke  in our family. If we see them , green in the greengrocers, we always buy one for  Colin.  More than that, when he was told to eat  for health after his Heart Attack, and then Diabetes diagnosis, he cut out cakes and biscuits, puddings etc and stuck to Sister  Rose's diet sheet very carefully.  Apart from the fruit that is. He took it into his head to eat lots and lots of fruit. The sideboard would groan with it, fresh and dried. Our children would indulge him with medjool dates from Waitrose, and packs of figs. So much so that Sister Rose had to explain that there was too much sugar in his now healthy diet . So the figs are going to be a real feast for him. More than that , the size of them belies indulgence, unless he eats them all in a sitting.

R and R did not stop there in their inspired generosity. Every base has been covered . 
  • Ginger sauce for me and great grandma
  • Stilton and walnut biscuits beloved of Imogen
  • A musical tin box filled with biscuits that the small boys will adore
  • Mulled wine spices for Homegroup Candlemas Party
  • Dave Walkers hilarious 'The exciting world of Churchgoing' for everyone ( NB most of my family read The Church Times)
  • A box of after dinner Trivia Questions. (How could R and R know that my family are games nerds?)

The unchristmas present was accompanied by a Christmas Card of MY FAVOURITE SORT a Burne Jones pre-raphaelite Angel, and all this in a week when I don't know whether I'm coming or going. Who says God has not got a sense of humour. 

See you all at the Beach Hut  !

Friday, December 10, 2010

Changing the template

Filey Samson
I changed the Template on Samsons Blog about 3 months ago. The new template is almost the same as the old one,Black has muted down to Charcoal gray  but otherwise its much the same.  Ive been looking at my daily blog dose, and realised that I dont actually choose a blog to elevate to Google Reader Status by its 
design. I only go by the content. 

Google Reader

You get to spot the Blogger Template after a while  and that makes one feel comfortable . Not everyone can mess around with the html and make a work of art  from a design page. Works of art too might be fantastic for some people and not for others. Recently I have been bowled over by the beautiful photography on the Visual Theology blog.
The man is a brilliant practitioner , graphics, and word content.  I have been round galleries for 50 years looking at Photographs, from those of Julia Margaret Cameron to Judah Passow, and his touch me . I dont have to be trawling Time Out for exhibitions as long as someone blogrolls good visual blogs for me. 
Conversely I have followed the blog of a methodist local preacher in Harrogate for years. She has as far as I know, never made any blogrolls except for mine , but I love her day to day banality. She talks so very Dear Diary, and I love her very normality. She could be me in other words. She has not posted for ages. I hope her husband is not ill again. I care so much that I will probably have to ask my friend Alison at Kairos church  Harrogate to see if she can find out.
So the question I am asking today is this-Is a fantastic template important for my Blog?
This question has hidden questions
  • Do I want to be blogrolled , and as popular as Rev Lesley , (who is now being overtaken by the Vernacular Curate)?
  • Will any more people read my blog if the template is a design miracle?
  • Are personal  blogs the future or will the Johnny Laird Daily be the new black?(Why is his copy of the Message not right way up on his profile of Twitter)
  • Am I jealous of all of them?
The answers are Yes, No, Don't Know , and Yes.

The answer to todays big question , Is a fantastic template important for my blog, No. 

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

I love it!!

I wonder if being a child of 1947 makes a difference. I was born during March of that year,one of the worst winters up until now. I have just started the faithful Volvo, idle after our week away in the metropolis.It is chugging away on the drive . Tomorrows trip to hospital with aged parent might not happen, but it could as I am ready. I know that if they cancel she will want a trip to the Beverley Tesco store. She ,and all of us can get cabin fever if stuck indoors too long. They have just started to grit the Filey roads, and  men are clearing the pavements as write, 12 days after the first snow and ice When I say I love it, I don't mean the ice on the pavements and the danger on the roads. I love the clouds, the sky, the snow itself, the warmth of my home, the excuse to talk to strangers, the way the light is different and the common bond which wraps around each of us.

The gritter above has a snowplough at the front. Being behind it in the National Express Coach on Garrowby Hill was as good as Hull Fair . It was out of my control, the bus, the gritter and the decision making. It is the dilemmas which make inclement weather stressful. I love the phonecall which says 'your meeting has been cancelled'. I do not have to agonize and ponder,cogitate and plan.  It is all done for me.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Advent 2010 and being a Sloane

Pete has done a great job . He has fixed the Parish up with another online Advent calendar.
 I am in London  staying near Sloane Square, and for the last time in what has been for Colin and I a wonderful retreat pad. The flat is to be sold now, so we will be back to Youth Hostels. We left Filey in thick snow and it has finally come to Chelsea. As you know I am a great fan of public Libraries, and my ticket for this one in Westminster is a treasured possession. So I am here amongst the brave and well shod seeing what todays offering on the Advent calendar is like.  Pam has done her first one-and I love it.Thanks Pam.  Thanks Google Docs too-you make everything easy and we can all look and see when to sign in for a slot, and the carol that others have chosen so that we do not repeat it.
The shops in the Kings Road and Pimlico and Sloane Squares flagship Peter Jones are all decorated in the best and worst of taste for Christmas.  No expense has been spared. I cant get the memory stick to work here in the Library so will have to post my pictures later.  But believe me, there is definitely a return to Christmas involving the Christian Story. As crib sets fly off the shelves in John Lewis(Oxford Street) and Peter Jones and the window displays everywhere astound the visual senses I am thinking of the helter skelter in Sterchis of Filey, and the comatose Santa in Katy Malones and thinking Advent is my favourite thinking time.

So tell all your friends to look at the Parish Online Advent Calendar and encourage them to start their thinking times too.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010