Monday, December 23, 2013

Enjoying a bad time

Daydreamer  once told me not to blog during insomnia, but its nearly true morning. The first car doors have slammed outside as neighbours go to work, and wheelie bins have been clattered out to the street for the last hour as the recyclers of Filey forward plan the next week.
Ive not given up this work of love formerly called Bridteacher, but have been doing Fileydaughter for the last 8 weeks or so . 
Daily trips to the Hull Royal Infirmary to see aged parent, and now to Castle Hill hospital Beverley to see most aged and failing parent have actually had much joy in them.
Three weeks ago eldest daughter and I took my mother to see her Plastic Surgeon  . He duly signed her off and we celebrated with  a trip to the nearby Waitrose at Willerby. She loved it and the bowl of chips in the cafe. Her poignant remark as she trolleyed past the vegetable aisle with its pristine boxes of green things she had never seen before was 
"well I dont need this aisle, I'm not doing any cooking now" 
True , but it was the first admission of progression to the idea of ready meals, and all guilt of bringing them to her flat and suggesting she tried this one looks nice and you like chicken casserole and a dumpling don't you ,Mummy! were dispelled  in an affirmation of good practice and common sense.

The children are p****d off with me for sharing all my concern about Mother on Facebook, and tagging them . They are embarrassed that I have had to share my daily trips on the train to Hull with them , their friends and my friends. I am sorry children. I normally blog , but have not had the time , and my smartphone is great but too small for  my thumbs and not fast enough for the data.  

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Use it

 Everyone through the automatic doors triggers a counter in Filey Library. NYCC can then tell just how many people are using the facility. I do not want Filey (6500pop) Library to close. I do not know how nearby Hunmanby (3100pop) manages without theirs now . So I am urging everyone to use their local Public Library and Information Centre, your feet make the stats. Filey Library and I C is responsible for all I do online. For in 2000 I was helped by librarian  Chris Robinson to do the BBC WEBWISE course on How to e mail , that got me started. Our local library runs my Reading Group, and  is a place of real calm even when really busy. Its where one goes for 
  • Bus Timetables
  • Maps
  • Which online
  • Books
  • use of the Printer
  • Computer courses
  • a coffee after the Doctors or Tescos
  • local information 
I just cant imagine not having access to my local library so I am going to make sure I trip the censor as often as possible.
Beverley has some something which needs using too . Visiting aged parent on Friday , and walking from the Station to M and S for her Small Farmhouse White I found pounds of Cooking Apples that had just fallen from a tree in an open space. Thank you !Beverley!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage day 10

Not exactly a wall of separation day, in the sense that the real thing is quite upsetting, and unforgetable. Today  I was reminded briefly of the aparteid wall which separates the West bank from Israel. Rather, a wall keeping the Palestinians behind a vast managed ghetto like fence, manned every so often by armed soldiers. I willnever forget when our tourist coach was held up for an hour , our Palestinian Christian guide kept for hours, as we tried to get into Bethlehem.

Today I found a different separation barrier as my A to Z made it seem easy to get from King Street, Hammersmith down Weltje Road.There was no way we could get across the Great North Road , as a huge barrier ran across it.

I had planned a stroll down to the river , a bite to eat at the oldest pub in Hammersmith, and watching sunset on the Thames. We walked slowly back to King Street , and had supper at a Polish restaurant.  I had Gherkin Soup  and Colin had Spinach stuffed pancakes with a dill sauce  and salad followed by a pastry of Poppy seeds , honey and cinnamon, and we both had the best coffee weve had for ages. 

Our tour group will be on their way home to Heathrow now. I am sitting on the bed  here listening to all the planes flying in, and have prayed for a safe journey home for all and I am pondering on how to get easily to the river bank .

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage Day 9

I am hoist on my own petard.
For the last 25 years when my children reached the age of choice, I have  served food for a variety of dietary requirements.

  • I have cooked vegetarian , avoiding all traces of animal fat, and every hint of cow heel in the jellies
  • I did dairy free for some years , soya milk, soya everything including icecream, sunflower oil and proficiency in label reading
  • Gluten free was my next triumph,  I was trained that even oats contained the stuff, and that most of the pasta was awful, but spelt was ok
  • I am presently doing  Sugar Free for diabetic spouse and am finding this the hardest as the poor man has been forbidden many fruits that have been staple for him , like grapes
My food producing for the masses has always had a Margaret Protocol: We all eat the same food. 

So now I am at the crossroads of my culinary adventures, my dining out and my reputation as a non fussy visitor.

On part 2 of our progresses North to South, and South to North, I have got us Ist class tickets on East Coast Mainline , cashing in on my Rewards Points. The food is all complimentary. I cant even eat the sandwiches. I am having a Cup a Soup , brought from home, and 3 Jamaican Water (0fat)biscuits. I have joined those I have railed against ,behind my hand ,for years. 

Simply Not true

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage day 8

Today is the day I am not going to be eaten by the Lake Galilee midges. I have packed for our return trip down south. 
The 3 packs of insect repellent wipes, 2 tubes of extra strength Jungle formula Mosquito cream , and my antihistamine cream are consigned to the history of the loft storage, along with the box of bunting from 2012, and 20 reels of florist tape and wires from the days when brides did not have hand tied bouquets.

Burgess Hill Premier Inn  via St Pancras is first stop, then 3 days in the Hammersmith one. I am looking forward to getting to know this Polish Suburb of Greater London, and the place where William Morris and the Pre-Raphaelites hung out and designed gothic nostalgia and revelled in Medieval Revival . I am going to lead spouse past and maybe into an historic pub, The Dove, and and stroll along the river path. The River Cafe is already fully booked, so we will do Polish, already a favourite cuisine from 40 years of going to Daquise. I will have to be careful as I nurse my fat intake , but Polish food  is gentle on the digestion.(IMO).

King Street Hammersmith

And My day today, my pilgrimage to the Surgery for the result of my scan. I prayed that anything and everything wrong would show up, I had already spotted the gallstone on the Screen 10days ago. Nothing more thank God. So I will manage it and say goodbye to chips.

Monday, September 09, 2013

My Alternative pilgrimage days 6 and 7

Incognito days waiting for a diagnosis are bittersweet. I had the joy of a morning alone in  the kitchen yesterday and I mean it. The Archers omnibus(radio4)  and Private Passions (radio 3) are perfect for a morning cooking Roast Beef and Yorkshire Pudding and Bramble Crumble . The mornings pleasure was not as It would have been 6 months ago as there was no Desert Island Discs seamlessly completing the time. I did not miss going to church , as Songs of Praise was really good. 
And so today.

I have booked a play for Colins Birthday , at the Lyric Theatre Hammersmith , when we are back on our royal progress of the Premier Inns. The play will be a surprise to us both . I dont know its name , only its starting time of 7.30pm. I have already clocked that the Lyric does food and wine, and for back up we may have his birthday lunch at the Polish restaurant across from our  Hammersmith hostelry. 

Saturday, September 07, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage day 5

This is not a forward journey completely. Today I have been backward. I have just listened to' Lark Ascending ' played  by Nigel Kennedy at the last Night of the Proms. I had barely time to get over the sublime voice of the counter tenor in the wonderful Chichester Psalms  when on strolls Nigel Kennedy looking like a tramp. So I had to close my eyes to listen to the music. I was back in the 1950s and 60s walking every Sunday after lunch up East Carr Lane from our  house in Saltshouse Road ,Sutton on Hull to the Holderness Drain and back. We often stopped and listened to the lark ascending , real time , big time.

Friday, September 06, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage day 4

This has day has had some unexpected pleasures.

220  to Kings Cross from Hammersmith 8.30am

In the height of what I imagined was RUSH hour, our  bus to Kings Cross took 15mins less than  transport for London Journey Planner said. I could be the Margaret on the buses equivalent of all the trainspotters at Doncaster station. I update my collection of bus maps every year, I know all the symbols of the bus map, I know where all the termini are, and I always try to start a journey with a husband and a suitcase from one. The fact that we were so early for the 11:08 from Kings Cross to York was neither here nor there we had so much enjoyment from watching people from the mezzanine.

So unique are we that apart from the occasional identical twin sightings (and Scarborough is good for those), that time passes very quickly when used wisely by people watching.

Todays best Group Spot, and I make no apologies for this pic, they were asking to be noticed, was this group of men off for a pre wedding get together with their friend the bridegroom in the onesie. He looked so much more respectable and stupid than the bridegroom in a Mankini we saw in York last year.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage Day 3

TODAY was to have been our free day in JERUSALEM .I had planned that we would go to the Burnt House. So Colin and I went to a house which had had a large fire instead;OR RATHER to its gardens.In the still sweltering heat of the metropolis we took the cool travel option,  the river Thames.(Richmond to Hampton Court)

I have been around the surrounds of Hampton Court Palace dozens of times. I have escorted elderly aunts, pushed prams,treated foreign visitors and in desperation tried to interest teenagers.I have been in springtime to see the daffs, walked dogs along the path from Kingston Bridge and prepared endless sessions for teaching the Tudors. I dont like the Tudors but its Colins favourite historical period, and he reads every book going, from Terry Deary to Hilary Mantel. Today he also wanted to see the restored William and Mary gardens.
All I can show you are some hot photos, of red flowers , desert flowers, and acres of boring formal gardens which had to be viewed but not enjoyed as the aesthetics of them would have been ruined if a seat had been placed near enough to view the vistas. The one seat I did find was so hot I could hardly stay there. The fountain looked cool but wasnt , and there was no way from straying from the gravel paths on to cooler grass borders. Not complaining really,I am glad that all the Italian and Spanish tourists felt at home.


Hampton Court, resored South Wing

I have been praying every day for David Cloake the vicar of St Phillip and St James Whitton, so said a special one today as we sailed past Strawberry Hill and into Teddington  Lock.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage Day 2

Nothing about this photo gives a hint of how bittersweet was the afternoon. And it so reminds me of our visit to Masada .I dont like heat, I like sun, I like fresh British Summer sun in Yorkshire, with the bracing air. I have never been as hot or uncomfortable as we were by the Dead Sea on that Herodian Palace Fortress, until TODAY that is. 
The sun poured down relentlessly on us in the Middle Tier of Sam Wanamaker's Globe watching HenryVI. The groundlings were in the shade. I thanked God that I had remembered my hat, my fan, my complete cover up in Linen and 2 bottles of water. I was about to walk out when the interval came, and I stood in the air near a glassless window frame  and watched the scene below. Spouse appeared beside me with a glass of homemade lemonade, cost a fortune, worth every penny. 

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

My Alternative Pilgrimage Day 1

Well, the rest of our Holy land group are in the air right now. We have prayed  that they have a good flight. That is the only part of my missed trip that would have been no joy for me. 

We have not travelled far , just from leafy Hammersmith to leafy Putney. Hammersmith Bus station is fantastic. I thought Croydon last year was good, and Hull is good, Leeds is awful, Doncaster worse, but the atmosphere at Hammersmith is seriously calm and hopeful. People smile, the station is clean, and the electronic displays accurate. 
So today started with an appreciation and thanks for London Transport.
Staff at Premier Inns have been trained well . The customer does indeed know they are going to have a good sleep guaranteed and the service personnel make them feel genuinely welcome . So today I am grateful to the receptionist who encouraged spouse that we walk  to the London Wetland Centre. I had already planned the 2 buses, and was delighted that my not the walking sort of husband decided that the stroll along the towpath from here would be worth doing .And so it was. I lived for12 years not 2 miles from the Thames at Putney and yet had never walked along the towpath towards Hammersmith Bridge. The London Wetlands Centre for Day 1 of my Alternative Pilgrimage taught me that in the middle of the chaos and bustle, dirt and noise, colour and friction here is a place for reflection and quiet.

Even so, this is not always,so I am  going to be trite.
“Happiness isn't something that depends on our surroundings...It's something we make inside ourselves.” ― Corrie ten Boom

Monday, September 02, 2013

Not far south bound

Today was the day that I started my journey as far south as I normally go , not being much of a flyer. We booked our return trip to Israel over a year ago,OUR THIRD TIME THERE.  I have bought enough fly repellent for our hotel by Lake Galilee, and enough new summer tops for evening formal dinners to keep even a seasoned traveller happy. We dont usually go as far. We are happy having urban break: But Israel is such a special place to visit for me.
We enjoyed our first trip to Birmingham very much in June. I am the mistress of the free bus maps, and my spirit of adventure has been so enabled by the use of the  instant internet on my smartphone.

  •  I am able to look up birds and wildflowers I don't recognize
  •  Check opening times of interesting museums,gardens and shops spotted from the front seat of the top of a double decker
  • Check the weather forecast on rhe wonderful BBC weather app
  • send photos direct to Facebook with an accurate GPS so my children can check that we are having a good time, and know we are where we say we are
I love being surprized by new places. We are on our way to Hammersmith now via Kings Cross on East Coast Mainline. Even though I lived in London for my years, just over the bridge in Wandsworth, I dont really know Hammersmith. I know Shepherds Bush, Barnes and Putney, and even the White City Estate of 40 years ago is a fond memory.  I can no longer find on a map the White City Stadium, where the father  of  my college roomate lost his money on the dogs every single week, and his wife pawned her engagement ring every Monday to redeem on Pay Day.
Spouse and I have had to cancel our trip with Baptists and the retired principal of Spurgeons Bible Collegeto the Holy Land. We cancelled yesterday , as my insurance was withdrawn.  I have already read all the Psalms of Ascent , and got Dr Constables Bible notes on the Psalms ready downloaded.. We have just done the whole of  the book of Exodus in EDWJ.
BUT I doing what a friend in our homegroup calls being positive.
 So, watch this space . I am on holiday in this country, using our existing train bookings , and hotels well placed for Heathrow , Terminal  1. We have added 3 nights in Putney, a  night with daughter In Burgess Hill, and 3 more nights in Hammersmith . We will go home for 6 nights, so will be able to watch Last Night of the Proms. I have booked extra  train train journeys creatively , and First class using my saved up Reward Points  with East Coast Mainline. Funny really, I have been trying to spend them for 3 years, but not , UNTIL this morning worked out how to do it.

Cant write any more as the sun is in my eyes, and there is no way Im going to draw the curtains on my fellow travellers. 


Saturday, July 20, 2013


Broad Beans , Chard  and Garlic
I cannot keep up with the Chard ,it comes and comes ,but is easily cooked and frozen. Aged Parent can eat it as she cant get much down (so she says) , and it slides down. It was a good job I watched  Gardeners World  last night, as today I realised my Garlic has the same fungus  spots as Monty's did, so I lifted the lot and left to dry. We however have been eating potatoes for 3 weeks, as the First earlies were ready then.
Arran Pilot

I only have an eighth of an allotment. It is enough for us, we have not bought any veg for 2 weeks. The secret is to grow what u cant buy or is expensive in Filey. I am trialing a row of Florentine Fennel round at Kiaora, and they  are going to be fine, now I realise how to grow them that is! Next year  I will put them on my Allotment plot.
One of the joys of having a small piece of allotment is the pleasure for me in solitude. I have a chair, a stash of fig rolls, I take a flask, and no watch. Except when it is really hot, and then it becomes a chore , I can potter . This week I filled all 4 baths with water from the hose. It took me ages to work out how to connect all the bits of piping across the plot , without knocking Bernards Cabbages over , or treading on one of his pieces of Perspex glass for the greenhouse he is reconstructing. I think  my Great grandfather ,the water engineer would be proud of me. I learn by doing , and by making mistakes and putting them right, a kineasthetic learner ,I  never read manuals, or watch others. 

The walk to my plot takes 10 mins from home. I have perfected the shortest route. It is my thinking time. Soon I will have to re do my walk for Plantlife, I have already noted all the wildflowers in my linear path, but will go again and add to the database as it has been an odd year and plants  have flowered very late this year, and  I have more to record.I realise that the allotment is actually on my Square. My walk is from the roundabout to Filey Field. However some of the wildflowers south of the railway line , and near the station have been really  good this year.

Allotment Goosegrass 

Mullein , Allotment drive

Bird foot trefoil-railway side

Allotment Sow thistle
lovely mix at Tescos
Tescos  Dock

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Death in the afternoon

Spouse and I have just been to visit  friends in Osgodby, just south of Scarborough and  less than a quarter of a mile inland. We are 4miles south of them and 200yards inland . Spouse sat in the garden with P and I was indoors with D, and as we drove off home my beloved remarked,

  • not that they had a gorgeous garden
  • not that they had a huge garden room with all mod cons including TV
  • not that everywhere was so clean and tidy,which it was
BUT that one couldn't hear a single seagull.

Here in Filey Old Town all the neighbours have started speaking to one another in a new and confidential way, a gentle probing sort of a way, a testing the waters sort of way. WE all seem to want to know what we think about the plague (my word ) of Herring Gulls that this year have ingratiated themselves on our roofs, or dormer windows, our chimneys and even our flower beds. The cacophony is unbearable. We cannot ring our Community Police Officer as we do when  few neighbours are brawling and screaming outside our dwellings when high on skunk. These neighbours have been as quiet as mice this year, or else have grown up . No,not  only are the gulls high on something  over our heads, but are divebombing our cars, our lines of clean laundry and our roofs. C and I and all our immediate neighbours would like a CULL . 

The  reason we are probing and testing in our inter locutions is because we have to be very careful. We  have friends in Filey who think the Gulls are lovely, are wonderful parents(which they are) and are fascinating to watch all day (if they are so inclined). Not in my backyard. I would be very happy if they went back to where they have come from, Bempton or Filey Cliffs. 

Side of Union Street, Filey

This last picture was literally the last. One of them strayed  into the road , as when I passed their flower bed 10 mins later , there was  grey roadkill  2 yards away.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Well, I've been Fileygardening!

Amongst other things that is!. Today is the first day of all day rain, so I don't have to go to the allotment and water. We have been away of course, and Im so scatty I can't remember where. Oh! Yes , London doing a try out of some more Premier Inns, and then it was half term and all the children were here, BUT that was a month ago, so can't recall what has held me up from this my Primary Blog.
The Filey Parish Blog is not MY own personal blog, I just keep it up to date as best as I can , and keep the stats going with posts. That Blog will come to a natural end one day, as something more efficient is found to serve the Parish. I'm just a steward really. This blog is the casualty. What a stupid statement that is. If no posts are forthcoming here for 4 weeks it doesn't mean I havent written them in my head. I've done some good ones cerebrally

  • about Bernards Greenhouse
  • about the way many allotment holders belong to a sociological sub culture. The 2 Ronnies were right.
  • about the merits of buying books over getting them from the Public Library
  • about the feting of actors who are themselves in everything they do (yes, I went to Rutherford and son at the Stephen Joseph)
  • about how I still think sandals with socks is ok
  • about the passage of time ,when all that disturbs is the 2 hourly train passing your small corner of England that is for ever Asparagus and Groundsel, with much Orache (which I will pick as spinach one day)
    This is how I tell the time on the allotment

Monday, May 27, 2013

Dreaming of Horsetails

First sight

My allotment partner mentioned the word of a strong herbicide today. I was thrilled. Ever since my first sight of Horsetails I have been unable to get the wonderfully ancient living fossil out of my mind. I know all about them , I have taught about them, I have seen them growing and marvelled at them ,but never before actually had them growing  on one of my allotments . 
This plot is not mine alone as you know. I am not able to decide the fate of the enemy. I have really been lying in bed and wondering how to get rid of   Equisetum Arvense the organic way .
Sneaking up between the raspberries at the bottom of the plot there is no way I can dig down a metre and remove the rhizomes. It didn't help me when my  neighbour 2 plots south told me that horsetails even appeared underground in Coal Mines.  I was not happy that Japanese knotweed had appeared at the end of Queen Street, just below the Fishermans Lookout. I am on Doomwatch with it. But with  the seemingly irrepressible Horsetail there are Chemical herbicide solutions. My neighbour 1 plot south said that Creosote was good. I have been through the shed thinking that Elijah Lynn whose chemicals we inherited ,might just of left a little 25yrs ago. Spouse is a careful hoarder of the could be useful. He is also a wise husband and must have listened to me when I suggested we did a massive clear out when we moved from Kiaora. I have been telling myself that Creosote is the best organic solution. I did Organic Chemistry and seem to recall somewhere that it is a coal tar derivative. Its Illegal now. I have been looking it up,online . No wonder Jeyes Fluid is not as good as it was. I have been thinking of people in Filey I know, who might have a little left judiciously in their sheds. I was working up to asking Bob Hall , a 96yr old retired wood work master who I know from Wednesday Morning Prayer at St Oswalds. You see where this is going. I am dreaming of Horsetails and their irradication from my life, from my mind. 
Until today that is, when my allotment partner, who is Organic, mentioned the beautiful word  GLYPHOSATE.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The view from the taps

My new header is just that , a view from the taps. Colin says its very dull, as headers go, so it will just have a short airing in the cyberworld, whilst I concoct something more pleasing for my very own Waldemar
Last week Colin surprised me by getting me 2 rolls of hosepiping and all the fittings. My allotment is not near the taps, but all the plumbing is ready to put in place . I had to get permission to run my water line across next doors plot and for it to stay there for those special fill the bath days. Ray the plot holder before Bernard and I,  has passed on to us a piece of land with all mod cons. In each corner of our produce plot is a bath. According to the legend by the taps , one may use hosepipes to fill  water cisterns on even days only. There is clearly a strict regime and rulebook behind the Filey Allotments. I dont think they realise yet that Maverick Margaret has joined them , for I'm sure I'll never know  whether it said odd or even unless standing over the standpipe. Colin will be relieved that I don't need him to walk to and fro carrying cans a furrowlong or how ever an allotment is, might be a chain or a perch. Somewhere in my memory of Cavendish Road Junior School is the fact that 22yards makes 1 chain.I think thats to do with Cricket pitches though.

Sizing of allotments

Friday, April 26, 2013

Thank you! Scotland

The taxi drivers
of Glasgow are wonderful. So are the people who work for Calmac and Scotrail, not to mention the Buchanan Street Premier Inn and the wonderful staff of the St Columba Hotel on St Columbas isle of Iona. 
My sister*and I have not  Cheshire mouse hunted or Fileygardened  for many days. We dont actually remember what day of the week it is,  and have seen no TV or listened to the wireless since leaving home.
Port Ban
Sue and I have been to Iona with our aged parent as all my Facebook friends will know. I have not blogged our  adventure. You do not want to know the fine details or the menus or the itininary. We sent pictures to the family every day using the wifi in the hotel in Iona. 
Sue and I snatched moments when aged parent did not need us . We took it in turns to take a walk when we could. Sue managed the Staffa trip on the day the boat managed to get away.
I managed to go corncraking several times, but heard and never saw. 
The taxi driver across Mull, David Greenhalgh  made the journey so interesting for us, pointing out Hen Harriers, Buzzards, The Great Northern Diver, moraine, and a crannog and  Telford bridges .
Am home now and tired.Have already booked for next year!

*Just before leaving home Sue found a mouse invasion in her roofspace.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Here in Leyburn

I am sitting in Penleys cafe and Bistro doing a @simonrudiger.No wifi in our holiday cottage and no signal for the mobile. It is the Starbucks of Leyburn  with its free wifi.Im not doing any Filey Parish Blog posts this week, but want to access it so I can see the blog posts of (hopefully) others , as I want to hear about the installation  and induction of our new vicar tomorrow. I am missing the Flower Arranging at St Oswalds today, as the parish Church gets ready to welcome Andrew in style.  
I am remembering when REV Mary was installed and inducted. She fell down the Vicarage staircase and broke an ankle in the week before, and had to attend  her own BIG DOand ring the bell  in a wheelchair. 
Jervaulx Abbey

Monday, April 01, 2013

St John Eliot

I have had such a feast enjoying Baroque Spring  for the last weeks, and it finishes today with the Marathon Bach Concert from the Royal Albert Hall. 

A Passionate Life  a biography of JS Bach  on BBC2 on Saturday night was the highlight of my Easter. Even the humanist Phillip Pulman surprised me with a positive quote about God . Today the Marathon, which I am hearing through  Radio 3, the wonderful Goldberg variations are just about to start. In the BBC clip during the scene shift I thought I heard George Martins name mentioned sans hearing aid, reminding me of my favourite Beatles song , In My Life' which was heavily 'bached' by him. 

Money from son for recent birthday is spent  . It was supposed to be for a kneeler for the Allotment. I have pre-ordered my favourite Bach Cantata instead , which should arrive by Ascension Day, if not well before as is released tomorrow. 

Friday, March 01, 2013

Cardoons or Globe Artichokes?

My new gardening year is beginning to take off.
 Reighton Nurseries are just the real thing. A family business where the "rooms" go on and on . If it lives in Reighton it will live in Filey,so exposed and windy is it there on Wolds Edge. 20 years ago we bought a Eucalyptus  tree for 10p. They are still only 50p. I will coppice it in a corner of my new plot. St Oswalds will always have some. 
My mind is going round and round.I am letting my enthusiasm run away from me. In my minds eye I see happy rows of Clary and Cosmos , growing perfectly for the stone Altar. I see lunches in the yard where we tuck into salads of rocket and beetroot . I see my drawers full of lavender sachets , and in 3 years I will be giving Asparagus away to all my friends .
Tomorrow however the double digging starts in earnest as Imogen and Nick will come and help me. I will take a flask , Colin will have the small boys and I will do my best with the couch grass.

Mine is the RHS 

My allotment partner has got a greenhouse from someone and is busy levelling the ground for it.
It just doesnt get any better.
I have 

  • 6 Asparagus Crowns
  •  pack garlic
  • Arran pilot First earlies(chitting nicely in the spare room)
  • 3 packs green manure seeds
  • 5 packets Chard seeds
  • pack Romanesco seeds
Tonights dilemma to lull me to sleep will be Cardoons or Artichokes?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Fileygardener becomes a real one again

This is me a few weeks ago with Bernard my allotment partner .A year ago we were talking gardening after church and I said I would love an allotment again (22 yrs since my Surrey one). So we agreed that we would share one  as neither of us could manage a full one. A year later and we have it. 
Colin and I went to see it and I was overwhelmed! It is fantastic. It had been maintained up until back end, the soil is good loam, and it has a shed, two baths for rainwater, an incinerator ,an apple tree, gooseberries, raspberries, and 6 crowns rhubarb. Bernard is already negotiating the transfer of a greenhouse. He is going to be a great mentor for me, as I am a gardener of the slapdash sort , and he is neat rows and level ground, and everything in its place.
My mind is reeling with plans. 
On Friday I went for another look with all the grandchildren. (4 ,aged 6-9). They already know lots and were asking for their own bit for sunflowers, and doing the I Spy Garden book. I had forgotten just how enthusiastic small children could actually be, spotting wheelbarrows, chickens, cabbages,lawnmowers and compost heaps. I nearly forgot ; we have 2 compost heaps.  Today after lunch Colin and I , 2 small boys, Daughter and her Husband, the Filey domiciles, came for  a look. I and N have offered to dig my portion over for me.(!!) So I showed Nick how to do Double Digging. We will all go on Saturday next. I will have to give further instruction on removing all couch grass rhizomes. I saw that Bernard had already started a heap of not allowed on compost heap. We'll have a burn up in the incinerator when its dry. Daughter has asked for pumpkins. I am planning Asparagus bed and  a Lavender hedge. 
I am nestling up now with my Chiltern Seeds catalogue. I wonder if I'll get done if I try a few Echiums.

Monday, February 11, 2013

My Mouse is not dead

This is for you Daydreamer. I had such a shock when I saw the thumbnail blogroll of your post I went straight to see what you had put .

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Mag and Nunc

I miss them but could easily put on a CD .
In the midst of an extremely busy weekend I just caught a snatch of this setting of the Nunc Dimittis on the BBC Morning Service for today . I remembered then that it must be Candlemas and checked the lectionary. I rarely get to hear any beautiful church music these days, its doesn't matter a bit . For many years I worshipped in churches where the music was indeed sublime, I ironed surplices for all my family, I got to church an hour before time so that chorister husband and children could do run throughs of anthems.  
Stumbling back into my very own Music Appreciation Society has recently begun as I start the routine of a new life in this little home. I have been playing my favourites again when spouse is out, and I have mental space to do my own thing. Last week I was back into all my Jacques Loussier Play Bach, next week I might be up for Handels Theodora. Today I will get to know this setting of those wonderful words from Luke 

28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss your servant in peace.
30 For my eyes have seen your salvation,
31 which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.”

Sister and I are busy arranging a Simeon and Anna trip for aged parent. She has wanted to return to Iona for many years . My sister last took her 10years ago, It will take 2 of us now .

Even to your old age, I am He,
And even to gray hairs I will carry you!
I have made, and I will bear;
Even I will carry, and will deliver you.
Isaiah 46 v3

Sunday, January 27, 2013

In bed with the Major General

'the plaid'

This was supposed to be a few bon mots about 25th January. I was going to talk about the Haggis in Morrisons and the wee drop of Drambuie I have been keeping to go with my Burns night thoughts. Its the 27th now and the moment has passed but I am not going to waste my 'tartan ' pictures.

Aunty Eva, Aunty Alice(died 1986) ,Aunty Bessie
My dearest of aunts , Alice Susan Bruce  was the curator of all our Scottish relics, heirlooms and in some ways ephemera. I always remember her on 26th January , her birthday. So forgetting Burns night has enabled me to write about something much more personal.
My great great grandmother Mary Mckinnon Elder married a Bruce , and passed many family things to her her grandaughters 'the Edinburgh aunts' (Eva and Bessie Borthwick) who passed them to my Aunty Alice. My aunt passed the Major Generals plaid  on to me several years before she died. 
The huge piece of black watch tartan (5 yds by 2 yds)was supposed to have belonged to Major General Sir George Elder who died in Madras in 1836. We have the Inventory of all his possessions on his accidental death,(fall from his horse) it is not there. His effects were sold in India and the monies returned to Scotland. Of course I have no way of knowing it was his. The oral tradition about it might have been blurred. It might have been given by him to my Great Great Grandmother who was his niece.  We will never know. When I was given it in 1982, it was all wrapped in brown paper, and had not been opened for decades. 

For the last 30 years Colin and I have used it. It is thin and extremely warm. When it is very cold we say 
Shall we go to bed with the major General tonight?