Showing posts from September, 2021


  Sunday was a beautiful day. Looking at the forecast, it could well have been the last summer's day as winter fast approaches. What better way to spend it though, than on the patio eating lunch outside with friends. In contrast the weather yesterday morning was demented, with the rain falling in torrents. At least I'd had the forethought to check the likely conditions a couple of days ago and a rendezvous with an old friend was hastily altered from a day walking in the countryside together to a trip to York. With the media's non-stop reporting of petrol shortages (1st world post Brexit problems that you seriously can't make up), it seemed better to travel by train. It appears that these days the Transpennine Express actually lives up to its name. Gone are the abysmal two carriages pulled by a diesel engine that I recall from those pre-Covid days and instead a five carriage high-speed train now dashes down the East Coast mainline. A day out by rail; normality really is

Eating Out

In celebration of his recent birthday Mister E and I have been sampling "street" food in a couple of  different ways. Eating out is one of the things that we have particularly missed during the various pandemic associated restrictions, so indulging ourselves seemed the perfect answer. Of course, dining isn't always about the food and sometimes, especially in the case of street food, the ambience alone can be the highlight. The big day included other exciting plans too, like the purchase of a can of paint from a local hardware store and parking in a multi-storey that we had never visited before (even the little things can provide a novel episode, not least on the upper floor of a carpark when you walk round and round trying to find the stairwell to exit on foot). Then, and simply because it fitted with our schedule, we made a decision to sample the fare from the town's newly refurbished covered market complete with street food stalls and bar. Don't get me wrong we


    ( Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay ) It was with some amusement that I learnt Abba is not only releasing an album but will also be undertaking a series of live shows in London next year. That's not bad for a group now in its seventies that hasn't performed together for almost 40 years. Except, they won't be appearing in those live shows themselves but in virtual form with digital versions of the group members as they once were.  I'm not sure I'd like to be reproduced on stage as I was in the seventies, unless there's some kind of bonus that arises from being able to dance in platform shoes. However, you have to admit that it's a somewhat novel way of maintaining your youthfulness and I suppose demonstrates the next and inevitable step from video to hologram and beyond. Perhaps we will all one day spend our later years entertaining in virtual form, letting our avatars do the hardwork whilst we sit back and enjoy retirement. Incredible as that may seem, at

Bitten by the Bug

No I haven't taken up a new hobby. Instead I'm becoming slightly exasperated. There was a time when I associated fly bites with holidays in warmer climes, now it seems that the insects in our garden have decided to turn on me. Worse still, it's now September and with a couple of days of unseasonally high temperatures, the local fly life is back, determined to outdo even Dracula with its blood sucking fetish. Okay, I know that here in the North of England, we've enjoyed a warmer summer than usual but that still doesn't mean Yorkshire has grown a population of mosquitoes and whilst midges have always been a nuisance, I can't recall ever reacting to their bites particularly. I swear my new enemy is the common house fly but when I looked them up, discovered they can't bite because of overlapping mouth parts. Well, all I can say is their suck is pretty painful too. Also whatever it is that keeps getting trapped on the inside of my sandal strap and then thinks its

Space Invaders

  Do you remember when Space Invaders first came out? It was a long time ago because I was at university at the time. So long ago that I had almost forgotten about those little green men moving across the screen in our pre-home-computer days. Strange that I now look back with nostalgia at something which seemed so futuristic at the time but is primitive by early 21st century standards. I guess that's what happens in retirement, you begin to look back fondly at the most ridiculous innovations of the past. If I'm not careful I'll be describing the merits of dehydrated potato (Smash) next and I never did enjoy that! My memories of Space Invaders were unlocked during our Lakeland visit as a consequence of what I shall refer to as a Covid incident. Whilst we pretty much kept ourselves to ourselves, socialising only with the eldest and his fiancĂ©e who joined us for the week and exchanging fleeting greetings with strangers we passed on the fells, I had cause one morning to join a