Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Zeppelin Talk

I spent a decent afternoon listening to Peter Jones telling us about Zeppelins and the Great War.  Around 20 of us were happily ensconced, fed tea and cheap biscuits and informed of the basics of dropping bombs from 17,000 feet.
From steam powered dirigibles to airships that could fly at such a height, higher in 1914 than any aircraft could reach, and cover over 2000 miles with 5 ton of bombs on board and while killing a mere 500 or so people during their short reign they did create mass panic and fear in the civilian population.  The mental outlook early in the century was one of technical progress and wonderful scientific achievement the thought that such creations could hurl death from far above went to the heart of the populace.  War had not touched the civil population since 1745 and the experience for those on the 'Home Front' must have been worrying.  However in comparison to the real war taking place in other arts of the globe this was nothing but pinpricks to the UK, some 500 men died every day on the western front!  
The hall is not great for pictures, the darkness is slight and the sun shining through at the far end of the hall was a pest however we got through it, most are regulars at such talks, and for £4 (£3 as most are over 65) it is a good afternoon for many.  

As the museums military expert in that I know nothing else and have read a book on the war I found I knew most of what was coming though I did not realise that the anti-aircraft guns, invented merely to fight Zeppelins, had a success rate of hitting the beast at 1 in every 8000 rounds!  Zeppelins are difficult to see in the dark and moving at 65 mph  are not where you saw them when your shell arrives 20 seconds later.  No wonder they were so hard to hit.  Hit they were and of the 103 that were made some 51 were destroyed.  With 20 men aboard, and most died as the beast fell to the ground in flames, this was a costly exercise but keep in mind it was less costly than the front line.  The propaganda offered by such terror bombing was worth the loss some would say and by 1917 the Gotha bomber was taking the place of hydrogen filled balloons.  These planes were more stable and better at dealing with windy conditions even if they could not get above 13,000 feet.  These aircraft continued the bombing campaign and like the Zeppelin menace causing many aircraft to be based in Essex to defend London and limiting their use on the western front.   
Considering the morning had been reasonably quiet and when busy all under control mostly it has been a good day.  No mistakes, no arguments, everything went smoothly, the girls all smiled without being after something and I made it up the stairs without calling for help.  A good day.

Monday, 15 October 2018

Maudlin Monday

There is nothing better than starting the day realising you have forgotten the niece's birthday.  Not only forgotten but forgotten from two weeks ago!  The same thing happened last year.  Is it any wonder she never talks to me?  So in spite of the mirk outside, making the place inside appear dreich, I was forced to enter Sainsburys in search of a gift card suitable for a woman who has everything and more.  Naturally I was there about 11 am when the whole town discovered it also had run out of bread and so we stood waiting at the checkout while grasping our baskets (men) and trolleys (women) as if our lives depended on them.  Noting the quickest checkout I joined in, the lass i front making space, and we both considered we would soon be out of there.  No!  Instead one of those women who question everything was questioning everything as we waited, the bill, the voucher ticket, the weather, she went on in spite of the checkout lass doing her best to subtly move her on.  By the time she left half the other lines had dwindled away.  Grinning cheerfully the next lass moved in and soon we were paying over the top for the directors fat pensions.  I once tried to get such a job as checkout staff but I am not sure my temperament would be suitable for that work. Working in the museum shop is very different but does have its moments, however I have not yet slaughtered anyone the way I would in a supermarket.

Anyway the card was purchased, a suitable note explaining (lying) concerning the reason for the delay will be included and my favourite niece will soon be ignoring me again. 
However the gift cards must be perused again soon as Christmas chopping is under way, cards being the easy way out of that chore.  However it is beginning to worry me regarding the shop cards that are available.  So many shops are closing down and others being taken over plus the Brexit disaster all combining to mean the cards might be worthless by the time I send them.  Will any company still exist?
I suppose there is always Amazon, that is one organisation that will exist as the man who owns it has more money than most governments these days.  After Brexit this government will have nothing and he might well take over, of course his money is already (allegedly!) running the 'Leave' campaign so he will not mind whatever happens.

I had a new type of spam the other day.  A nice chap claimed he had put  a 'trojan' on my computer a while back and had been watching what I was doing.  If however I did not put $500 into his account he would show everyone on my address book what I had been up to.  He implied this was something 'interesting.'  I was intrigued, however I failed to pass on money, anyone who has hacked me would at least know my name, but I was hoping he had sold my dirty secrets around the land but there appears to have been no response so far.  If you get the dirt on me let me know, I might want to look at it again...

Saturday, 13 October 2018

Nothing Happened

Nothing has happened since I got the new mattress as I have suffered ever since.
Working the next day, hard work even though not one visitor entered, running around sorting others mess before I even started.  Getting milk to discover it was already there and since then suffering aches in my knees that will not leave. 
Therefore I have gone no further than Tesco.
This is made worse as the sun has shone, in spite of strong winds which must have done Wales no good as they got the rain that goes with it, and I was stuck in here.
Worse also was Scotland's ignoble defeat from Israel, my inability to see it as I don't have SKY TV and no football on worth watching until Friday night and tonight.  
However I did meet the new Landlord on Wednesday.  By new I mean the daughter of my deceased Landlord who alongside her husband has taken over the running of the shop.  This went reasonably well and indicates good things especially as I dropped a note to her mum after dad died and it appears mum remembered me and liked the note.  I will not get evicted for a wee while then?
I wish I had invited her in for a cup of cheap tea, the place was tidy and it might not be so for a while again! Tsk!

There was a royal wedding this week, it took up most of the media for a not important royal and cost millions of public money.  Her father may be pleased but public money has never meant much to him, he ought to be a Tory MP, he has the makings.
But I ask, who are the folks that queue up all night to be there when it happens?  I understand women watching strangers weddings, questioning her choice of dress, bridesmaids and husband but why follow minor royals as if this was important?  What do people get out of following the royals?
Crowds gather wherever they appear, the event I understand, but those who are always there I don't?

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

Watching the Clock and Justice for Ashers

The Landlord I have known for around 25 years has passed on recently.  He was always good to me and there was rarely problems.  The staff who worked for him, under some pressure because of his miserly ("What 4 tea bags for 4 people? Use a teapot!") ways and constant interfering, pushing them to do two jobs at once when they were already doing two others!  However I did not suffer and now he has gone the houses have been taken over by his daughter and her husband.  
What changes she will bring running the organisation we have to wait and see.  However in the meantime there are legalities to be gone through, an estate agent must visit to value the house's and flats for probate, and depending on who you speak to there are between 180 and 300 properties, not counting the big 'pile' he himself lived in (but bodged up rather than splash out on).  
So today it was arranged for her to come with agent for valuation, this meant I stayed in just for the opportunity of meeting her or the assistant lass who does the work in the office.  This also meant I had to forego the opportunity to visit Southend, the home of the 'Essex Girl and Essex Boy' where my niece was playing piano at lunchtime.  Thus deprived of music and the opportunity to take a picture of the mile long pier while the sun shone I remained indoors.
Rising half asleep as always I breakfasted on stale bread forgetting the new loaf was available and spent time ensuring the place looked tidier than it actually is.  This meant placing items on rusty sinks, hiding blotches and piling things in neat piles rather than higgledy-piggledy.
So I waited. 
There are six flats, two unoccupied with the workmen (workman as the other has gone down to Mersea, by the estuary to work there while the sun shines!) redecorating and renovating the flats.  I was the only person in today as all the others are at work or play. 
So I waited.
I was ready by nine more or less and continued my day, without making any mess, while I listened out for the door.  By eleven I was becoming hungry and took the recycling bag out and spoke to John the hard at workman.  "He was supposed to be here at 9 am," he said from up a ladder.  We groused over this, and the rubbish outside and discussed what to do with it and waited, well he painted.
So I returned to waiting. 
Having found the new loaf from yesterday I made a far to thick sandwich with old turkey meat, and I mean old, and watched 'Match of the Day 2' as I gobbled.
I waited on.
Eventually a noise was heard, John failing to work out which key opened the door was getting desperate so banged on the front door.  He was there with the estate agent but no landlady, no assistant just John!  Well, thought I, this was not worth waiting for!
So the man did his job while we all chatted about things of great merit and then he left with John struggling to get the hall light to work and to find the key for No 5.  I helpfully enquired if he would be able to find the door on the way out but did not catch the response.
So I waited in vain.
I would have thought the new boss would wish to meet me, don't all women?
At least the second in command of the office could have come over.
Instead I sat here listening to radio programmes and wondering what I ought to be doing but failing to find an answer I wish to discover....I am still failing there.

Did you notice the clock date is a day out?

Justice is done!
Some time ago a man called on a in Belfast baker ordering a cake.  This was acceptable until he demanded it was topped with a message supporting gay rights.  Daniel McArthur who runs Ashers Bakery rightly refused as being Christian and profoundly disagreeing with gay marriage this was against his beliefs.  Gareth Lee, for it was he, sued.  Supported by the 'Equality Commission' in Northern Ireland (according to power sharing this is run by Sein Fein) he went to court and the local judge, a woman, found the Ashers had discriminated by refusing to bake something that disagreed with their beliefs and conscience.  This goes against the freedom of conscience that must be allowed in the United Kingdom.  This surely is part of 'British Values.'
Ashers appealed and eventually the Court of Appeal turned down their appeal but questioned the motivation of the Equality Commission in bringing the case.  Thus the Ashers went to what is now called the Supreme Court.  This was once know as 'The Lords' as the Law Lords judged sch cases but Tony Blair in his desperation to be president amended the name thus.  Today the Court gave the verdict that no discrimination because he was gay was involved.
 ''As to Mr Lee's claim based on sexual discrimination, the bakers did not refuse to fulfil his order because of his sexual orientation. They would have refused to make such a cake for any customer, irrespective of their sexual orientation.''
"Mr Lee had no claim against Ashers on the grounds of religious belief or political opinion."
In short the whole thing was a stunt.
Belfast, a divided city, a protestant baker approached by a gay man hoping to be refused, there are other bakers in Belfast.  Supported by nationalist equality commission he sues with £250,000 being spent by them on this case.  Four long years in which discriminating against Christians has been legalised has come to an end.  Gays discriminating against Christians is a common thread, a determined attack on any faith that rightly opposes gay marriage or abortion.  
This court judgement ends that discrimination.      

Give thanks to God for justice, give thanks as the repercussions will go far and improve many lives. 

Monday, 8 October 2018

Disruptive Monday

My routine was severely disrupted this Monday as the new mattress arrived.  
Before seven thirty I had stripped the bed and manhandled the old mattress downstairs, though to be fair it fell down by itself mostly.  Then when dumped by the bins, breathing heavily and using the bins to stay upright, the shopkeeper next door came over with grumbles re folks using his bin (which costs him money) and parking their van thoughtlessly where others park.  It looks like the new folks (from Newcastle way) next door might be trouble.
Having spent money almost immediately afterwards in Sainsburys (I went there specifically to collect the 'Lego' cards some kids are collecting just to be told it ends today!) I then returned to make space for the new mattress coming up the stairs.
The call from Cornells came about ten thirty and the man and his female assistant, a friendly pair, brought the heavy mattress upstairs.  Being gentlemen and understanding the modern woman's views of equality we let her take the heavy end.  Apart from the awkward turnings, the table I thought would not be in the way being in the way and the heavy breathing and beating hearts from at least two of us it was quick and successful. One mistake possibly was my glib remark to her after the beast was settled in place regarding lying on it, I suddenly thought that could be out of place...
His advice to turn the mattress every so often was highly amusing I thought as three of us had struggled with it, anyway that will not be for a year or two said I...
Anyway they left happily enough and drove back to the store.  A good store with a good reputation, since 1981, beds and chairs and friendly service.  No obvious pressure and helpful also.  Bought Saturday delivered Monday as one was in stock, not bad.  I can tell you that it works well as I happened to try it out not long after preparing it, a test that I required also.

Sometimes I wonder how I cope with the banality of daily life!  Today I brought excitement into my life, but not to anyone else's by obtaining my first cheap Christmas present and three cards!  By the end of the month not only will I have finished my shop I will also be begging on the streets for a piece of bread.  Still it will do my figure good...
Christmas shopping in October, my sister, now long passed on, used to buy most of hers in the January sales.  Everything was ready by February in her house.  My list is made up, already someone forgotten, and I am looking at the shops, now swamped with Christmas goods even if the plastic snowmen, fairies and assorted unchristmaslike dross is not yet on show.  

While waiting for the van this morning a couple passed by, he pushing a pram she struggling behind, possibly recovering from the child or working on another one.  His face, as well as the disposition on show during our brief meeting, reminded me of those face seen regularly on the Essex Police Twitter feed.  'Have you seen?' accompanied by a photo of one who would not succeed at the eleven plus but has managed to pass off ten thousand pounds worth of white powder somewhere on behalf of another brighter individual.  The faces who appear always seem to me to be of those from a less well educated level of society.  A friend who once served as magistrate and has had many dealings with such confirms this, they also tend to come from families of similar types.  Crime begins in the home.  This left me pondering how long that couple would remain together, what about the child, and what could be done for them, if anything could be done or they would allow things to help them.  Not everyone wishes to be out of the lifestyle they know.  

Sunday, 7 October 2018


Saturday morn saw me wandering about with a bank card in my hand.  I had decided to spend money on a decent mattress after all.  No chasing around all the shops I returned to the man who gave me the last dead one around 18 years ago and spent £270 on a new one.  This one is much firmer, although he forgot to mention how long the guarantee s for, and on Monday he will deliver and help me up the stairs with the thing. It will be fun as I can hardly get me up there and then there is the tight corner to negotiate!
But all that money.  
I came home and sat trembling at having to pay put more than I normally do.  The emergency fund was put to use and that too is shaking badly!  Ah well, it has to be done, and so it now has been done.  I hope this one will last 20 years, I will not care about a few sharp springs coming through by then, if I'm still here.

Quite who the dancers were I know not but they offered some sort of traditional English dance, found somewhere in drunken England's distant country harvest celebrations I suspect.  Whether debauchery followed as it did in the past is not clear as I hurried on before the rain came and left them to it.
The men played their tunes, the woman banged the drum in a constant and very loud beat and the people danced.  All very simple and while the drum would certainly go back many centuries I am not sure what instruments would be available in times past.  The accordion came into being in the early 1800's, the banjo of sorts appeared in the 1700's and may be based on instruments found in Africa long ago, but wind instruments go back well into ancient days, nose flutes (disgusting thought) were common in Greece as indeed were the people who played them and I suspect the two main instruments would have been found in many rural areas, possibly travelling minstrels would make a living touring the Harvest areas and leading the jollity.
This morning I was remembering the Harvest Festival back in Edinburgh concerning a time in the mid 50's when I saw a great display, including a whole wheatsheaf standing proudly there, a huge display and I realised that this was shortly after the end of rationing.  Folks then knew about rationing which ended in 1954 so such a display must have been wonderful not long after.  These days such churches are more concerned about those abroad starving or lacking fresh water than themselves and quite right too.  Our offerings today, and people brought a great deal, went to the local foodbank, another result of Tory austerity and the disgraceful removal of benefits from the needy.  I was told the local foodbank had increased demand during the holidays, free school meals not being available some folks could not feed the kids.  The Conservative leader and her party need to read the book of Amos and soon.    

Friday, 5 October 2018

Work Time

Once again the street is blocked by workmen digging up the road.  The two building sites, one on either side of the road, are constantly digging up the road for gas or electric pipes to be installed, removed, re-installed or just to block the road I think.  Speaking to one of the gang this morning he spoke of planting a tent and moving in.  Eight or nine times they have been here and things change with the delay caused by this, the changes I don't notice regarding mortgages has meant three planning to buy over the road have changed their minds as their costs have risen.  The building on this side still has problems however as while the sign says 'Sold' nobody has moved in.  I suspect an agent has bought the pot and is either waiting for prices to rise and re-sell or another problem has blighted the building.  More road works next week!
Update!  This afternoon people began to move in next door!  It may be there will not be any more work at this side of the street. maybe...

The work has come inside today as the old boiler is being replaced with a new glossy one.  Since 9:30 this morning they have been working away, creating dust, much less than the man who installed the thing all those years ago created, bored holes in wall, bored holes in cupboard, upset the neighbour - who I had to deal with - and left me tired and hungry and living on two small slices of bread and honey since 7:30.  Good job I am not one to complain!, As I type I notice how dust, thin and almost imperceptible, lying across this laptop this might take several days to clear up.  Windows are wide open hoping for through wind to clear the air.  Good job it was warm.

Before they left, after they had cleared most of the debris I was given the new thermostat.  As is the way modernisation means digital instead of buttons to press or turn and this leaves me wondering how to work this 'simple' mechanism.  A quick run through before they left and I informed them I knew what to do while accepting to myself that I was lying in my teeth!  I may need to borrow an adolescent when winter arrives.  Testing the boiler proved it works and with it sitting beside me I can alter the temperature, timing probably contact the FBI and the KGB at the same time.
My routine is ruined, I am still hungry but the water boils correctly now.
What can I break tomorrow...?


Wednesday, 3 October 2018


For reasons obscure the Dividend number from the St Cuthbert's Co-op, or was it the Leith Provident one, came to mind today.  This was the number offered each time we spent our money in the Co-op round the corner, one of the first small 'supermarket' types shops in 1953!  I suspect that like many others I mixed up the two numbers offering the wrong one one many occasions although this would be offset by other little boys and girls doing exactly the same throughout the area.  
The number however is significant.  This was our life!  We were that number and in so many ways we are nothing more than a number.  One brought into this life we obtain a National Insurance Number, this follows us forever, supposedly in safe keeping by the Civil Service.  For the most part this does not matter but under a totalitarian government, which this one is threatening to be, it could become dangerous.  The UK has never gone in for Identity Cards except when involved in major war and to ensure freedom a totalitarian approach must be temporarily invoked.  This does not ignore the Census which is intended to discover the population numbers.  A few years ago a major fuss ensued when such cards were proposed by someone or other and it was not just the £82 price that brought many to grumble, it was the state interference in our lives.  Yet we all have National Insurance numbers?
We are known by number in this computerised world, on goods we buy online as 'Customer Numbers,' we possess driving licences with numbers, insurance companies love the length of the numbers they use, our goods at home are all in possession of serial numbers, even football players have to possess squad numbers so they can be recognised!  Astro physics I am told is all about reducing everything to numbers, our houses have numbers on the doors (but not '13' as women will not buy a house with that number on the door), we identify the bus that runs late by its number and the very road on which it runs late has a number more than likely, and riches arrive at our house if we pick the right Lottery Numbers.  No neither have I.
We are not human, we are mere numbers in spite of what 'The Prisoner' used to say.

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

A Routine Day

I was worn out by ten minutes to ten this morning.
The door unlocked by my favourite boss who smiling pinched the bag of chocolates I brought and still smiling gave me work.  Naturally I was pleased.
Enquiring regarding the milk situation, usually I have to trek to Tesco for this, I found milk had been purchased so ran to make my tea while also doing one of the many other early morning jobs.
Kettle boiled cup ready milk not there in fridge, just last weeks which was turning green and yoghurt like.
Clearly my other favourite boss, not the one who opened the door or the one who bought the milk, this one must have taken milk to Hall where she was setting up for a meeting of old women who were having an adult 'Victorian Class' experience.'  I trudged all the way down to the Hall.
She did not have milk.
It must be on desk of boss who bought it.
I trudged all the way back and onwards to office.
She did not have it on desk.
"It's in the fridge," she said sweetly.
Indeed, having trudged all the way back it was in the fridge, not in the normal place, where the dead milk resided, but hidden away on a shelf behind foodstuffs.  
Tea made I trudged back to desk where I had then to leave tea and sort out the sand, the Saturday staff not doing so again!  I also had to check the other sand in the treasure chest, then I had to do the stickies.
Having done so and returned to tea I realised time was short and I had to change a bulb over the Roman artefacts.  Simple, trudge back for key, open cabinet, unscrew and remove bulb and replace. So where is the new bulb?  In the bulb cupboard.  This is a display case with doors on, why do they no all have doors on I ask and be used as cupboard?  Where is it?  In the gallery, not that one, not that one, round the back, not that one either.  Maybe it's in the war rooms, not there also.  
Time is pressing I will have to open up soon.
Is it round there, no, up stairs, no.
Oh there it is, moved to be right in front off me!  How am I going to see it there!!!  
Which bulb?  Back to the cabinet, get the bulb, search the many green boxes for the right one, there are lots of wrong ones.  Find right one, only one left by the way, that's organisation for you, return to cabinet, screw in bulb, lock away Roman gods, horse bells, and other left over items lying about since the 2nd century or so and close up.
Inform staff of lack of bulbs, discussion re bulbs threatens to continue for a while, run away.  
Annoy cleaner, woman, as I rush into Gents before she has finished cleaning.
On the way back I had to reset the table for the kids, put things back in place, ensure the lights were on, even though reaching the switches down below mean I canny get back up, and then rush to the WW1 cabinet to pick up the bits that had fallen down (Blue Tac does not always hold) and then get back to the front to open up.
I had not started and I wanted to go home!
My tea was cold.
We then, my colleague and I , sat for the rest of the day cutting shapes for a kids event.
One couple with granddaughter came in.
Oh yes the party of old folks arrived for their Victorian experience I went out and explained how they were to enter and the boss went out to explain they ought to enter differently from what she told me!  
After hours of cutting shapes the women, now roundly humbled by the Victorian teacher, came into the shop to buy things.  From empty shop to women everywhere for half an hour, then I went to Tesco.
I forgot my list and forgot what was on it.
A routine day so far...

Sunday, 30 September 2018

Sunday Thoughts..

Blethering this morning with two women, I was hoping to get a word in, the subject of counselling people came up.  One who was employed in similar business said that the biggest problem today was people being unwilling to 'take responsibility.'  I had to agree that she might be right here and wondered why?
Society, that means 'us' has brought us to this level from government legislation, teachers fancy ideology (often unwritten and confused) and parents who themselves refuse much responsibility and await others to take the blame or sort things out for them.
This is not new, Cain slew Abel and when asked about this did not take responsibility, he would have avoided such if he could but it was brought to his attention anyway.  People, including ourselves, are no different today.  However the social conventions that controlled us have been eroded by liberalism at every level.  The school pupil, sorry 'student' gets off with wrong doing with no punishment, the punishment for crime does not fit, politicians at all levels lie to us (see 'Brexit') and retain their positions, and the media leads us in celebrating badly behaved broken celebs and simplifying life into 'good and bad' with no moral base in between.
The result appears to be an attitude in many that when things go wrong it is not their fault it must be someone else who is responsible.  There is great difficulty in taking responsibility upon ourselves. 
Not everyone is thus imbued but there is that streak crying out throughout society and it continues to erode individuals life, sometimes with sad results.  
I of course am completely innocent.

The great thing this weekend is that the Heart of Midlothian remain top of the league.  Not only but also Hibernian, the wee team from Leith find themselves in second place and the even wee'er  team Livingstone are now third in the table.  The Glasgow media still speak of the blue and green bigots of course but the reality is their teams are guff and we know it.  
Things might change of course, their referees, SFA and media will do all they can to overthrow us but we can defeat them once again.

Saturday, 29 September 2018

Life is so Busy...

Unsurprisingly Saturday has been a busy day.  All that football to watch and things to do!
Early I was in Sainsburys being chatted up by the staff, as always.  Then I inspected the bins in a vain attempt to clear up the mess left when a neighbour moved out.  I have decided to add my aged mattress to it, after I by a new one, and call the council to remove the rubbish.  It might cost but is the easiest way.  The landlord might even pay me back.
After breakfast of leftovers again it was off to Tesco for the things Sainsburys do not have the chance to overcharge for.  On the way I sauntered into the museum to gloat to the staff regarding the busy afternoon ahead of them while I lazed at home.
They through me out.
Then I had to watch football for hours.
Life can be hard on a Saturday...

I did take time to venture out to one shop in the afternoon and passed the town centre with the 'Food Stall Day' underway.  This brings many people into the town they say but it does not bring them into the shops (nor the museum) to spend money.  The food providers are happy, many come regularly, and at he prices they charge I am sure they sleep well tonight.  However it is not for me as I would hesitate to spend such cash when I can burn similar cheaper at home.
Now after a hard day I am filling my head with old rock at too high a volume and working through YouTube to my pleasure and with wee earphones my neighbour's also.
This saves thinking and takes away my nervous energy easily....

It's Autumn, therefore these 'Boris the Spiders' are appearing everywhere often with huge webs taking ages to create.  It never fails to amaze me that such creations can be made by a wee beastie that has never attended a technical college or worked an apprenticeship.  Slender, huge and able to withstand quite some wind.  I wonder how long he will be there?  There was one in the corner of my window for several years.

Thursday, 27 September 2018

Hermes the Moon

I find all this very strange.  They call this the 'Harvest Moon' but for the life of me I have been unable to see any harvesting of any kind going on up there.  I have searched NASA but not even the Chinese have managed to sow seeds as far as I can tell let alone harvest anything.  Can you harvest Green cheese I wonder?  If you could the French would be up there like a flash. 
The name 'Harvest Moon' has been around for four hundred years or more,  the name being recorded in the 1700's suggests that is was widely used for a long time before that.  The brightness of the light, seen under a cloudless sky enabled harvesters to reap the crops late into the night.  They must have rejoiced at such long hours!  Indeed looking out at around three this morning the darkness was rent by the moonlight and it was clearly possible to manage many jobs sufficiently if need be.  Criminals must remain indoors at such times as identification would be enhanced by the moonlight, and stealthy approaches or leaving of a burglary might be difficult if you can be seen.
Early man, attempting sleep on the roof in ancient Sumer must have wondered about the moon and all those other lights flashing across the sky.  Little wonder they invented astrology, though in their day it did not involve a 'Tall dark man calling on Tuesday' of course.  These Magi calculated and understood so much about the sky above recording phenomena of all kinds and their records are still studied today.  The man on the Nippur omnibus must have wondered also when he had time to sleep what was going on above his head.  Ancient peoples however bright they may have been were somewhat rough and indeed cruel towards one another, recalling God calling for the flood because "The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."  Slavery, forced work and brutal treatment was common in those days and it is no surprise a flood took them away.  Christian influence has made many things better, even if it did lead to a 'liberal' society gone mad.  It is almost impossible these days to find any place far enough from the light to see the sky as it is.  After midnight most street lights are switched of here to save money and occasionally this gives opportunity, but only if the sky is clear.
All over the country people are desperately attempting to take photos of the moon.  Many are turning out as small blobs of white light, like some of mine, others are well posed and tastefully arranged suitable for framing and sending to newspapers for a moments glory.  I have enough glory so I don't bother.  

'Hermes' strikes again!  Or at least doesn't strike at all.
You recall I had one packet delivered, or not as the case may be.  An email to company brought response, packet delivered next day (Hooray) and a few days later a duplicate, from customer services, followed.  Contact made, promise of collection of duplicate was also made and Hermes awaited.
I still await.
Today I discovered many others in the town also awaiting Hermes.  Packets not delivered, packets delivered but not to the house they ought to have been delivered to, phone calls to numbers that tell you to contact seller, emails not returned, calls not helpful.  
One lady now claims the Hermes man is 'under investigation.'  
Does this mean the police or the company?  This is unclear.  Naturally the women all consider the police are involved.
I am not so sure.  Incompetence, poor pay, zero hours, long hours, foreigners straight of the back of a forty ton lorry, unable to read maps, read English, without licence, insurance or knowledge is more likely than anything else.  Whatever the company will not be paying large sums, has large overheads and poor management of too much work.  All adding up and if one man decides to help himself it will be difficult to sort things out.  The police may have better things to do.
So I await developments.
The town awaits eagerly, packets aplenty lie somewhere, possibly in Essex, possibly in a van struggling through the dark looking for a town he has never heard off while checking the map to find out where he is.  
This could go on for a while yet...

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Up on the Roof

Having spent an energy filled day weeding the front and attempting to clear up the mess left behind by neighbours who have left leaving their remnants behind, packed mostly in plastic bags yet spilled across the waste space, I had little energy to do anything else last night.  Add to this a little item I eventually finished for the museum re the armistice, it has taken three months, and what brain cells I have left were not functioning either.  For reason hard to comprehend the TV people failed to feature any football leaving me with no respite from my aches thus forcing me to climb upon the roof and howl at the moon.
This indeed made me feel a lot better but did not do much for the old lass in the bungalow next door who switched off all the lights and locked all the windows and doors loudly.  It must have been loud as the noise from all the dogs in the neighbourhood barking at the same time create what some call ' noise nuisance.'
I must confess I was a little stiff once again this morning when I had to attend to all the visitors by myself, my associate having flown off to Corfu for yet another holiday.  I realise that having retired and having some money to burn it is right for them to make the most of the years they have left, in her condition we do not know how many, but my couple of days in Bournemouth look weak in comparison to their world travels.  Not that there is any jealousy in any way, no siree!   
I might seek that moon again tonight.

I wonder if this bird understand the situation in the nation?  Sitting there in the sun in the late evening, resting from the labours of attending to her mate, stuffing her face and er, that's it, she now sits there high above the world allowing the fading sun to warm her before bedtime.  Do these birds not know we have an inept government?  Do they not realise we have no opposition?  Do they not realise the state of the nation?  They will find out soon enough for within a year most of the population will be eating the worms and grubs they are living off when Brexit comes in and the economy collapses.
Oh dear, I am back off onto the roof...

Sunday, 23 September 2018


Trapped by rain...bored, no football, nothing exciting happening...

Saturday, 22 September 2018

September Shopping

Tesco's September!  Shelves filling up with Christmas goodies, all overpriced yet 'must buys' for some.  (OK I may buy some also)  I understand that in Denmark they must wait until the 1st of December before Christmassing the shops, I think that ought to happen here but the greed of various governments will not accept this as too many manufacturers pay towards them.  
Tax also comes from Xmas gifts.  
I suspect the museum will once again soon prepare for Xmas, once the half term holiday is over the boss will spring into action while I once again seek out my 'Bah Humbug!' hat.  She threatened to burn it last time, or was it me she threatened to burn?  
Christmas comes but once a year and in my view it ought to be kept until December, a more suitable time, and if shops wish to install goods in preparation I would insist they make no mention of Christmas or the meaningless characters that accompany it until that date.  It would also save the councils cash with all those dreary Xmas lights.  
Maybe I am just a grump of course.   

The town of Langholm is now called the 'Home of Chilli's' because one man's fascination with these beasts led through his friends to many in the town, and now elsewhere in the world, growing chilli's for themselves.  This is a harmless hobby which has become a bit of fun for the locals and good luck to them I say.  However it got me thinking that before the 70's such vegetables were unknown to us in Edinburgh.  Peppers, courgettes and many other exotic veg were far from our ken.  Cabbage, peas, turnips and carrots as well as potatoes, often grown in dad's garden were the staple with tomatoes and lettuce appearing also.  During the 70's exotic items like peppers began to appear in the shops we used even though some middle calls retailers possessed such veg we never saw nor heard of them and could never afford them until the worst decade of the century arrived.
Now of course fruit and veg fly in from foreign parts, well wrapped up, disinfected and treated to make it appear healthy even though it is a year since much of it was picked, by machine probably, and sent on.  How our foodstuffs have improved as our health has deteriorated, how our wealth has increased along with choice yet we still live on chips, well OK I still live on chips.  
A wide exotic choice of fruit and veg is a good thing when we can afford it but there are questions to be asked about the treatment it undergoes before arriving on our plates.  There again I don't know why I complain I use frozen peas and Brussels as they are easier!


Friday, 21 September 2018

Friday Faffing

I note Chris Evans, paid £1.6 million for blethering on Radio 2, has had a couple of babies, or at least this weeks wife has.  He has named them 'Ping and Pong.'  Now my love for Chris is such that I suspect I have not actually heard a word from him for at least ten years and would continue this quite happily for another ten, however I make so bold as to interfere in his life by suggesting that anyone who names their child in a stupid manner be hung from the nearest lamppost upside down.
At the very least the social services ought to be involved as there is no doubt names such as this, plus the constant publicity that follows them will do them much harm.  'Zowie Bowie' you will recall became 'Anthony, known as Tony, as soon as he was able to change his name.  He may remain working in music but now nobody notices, what could he have achieved with a proper name?

Theresa May, rejected by most of her party, rejected by 27 EU leaders and indeed laughed at, following, she says, 'the will of the people' in spite of the people wanting a second referendum that will end this madness.  She and her associates, if she has any left, are out of ideas and desperate to succeed in pushing Brexit in spite of knowing it will devastate the nation for fifty years. Don't you feel sympathy for her?

Today is the 'International Day of Peace.'
Who decides this?  Who organises this?  Why did I only find out by chance?
Does it work in Syria I wonder?
Does it run into Friday evening when the pubs come out? 
Hmmm it appears this arose from the United Nations and has been running annually since 1981.
I had not noticed.
How many wars since then?  How many conflicts great and small?
Peace with God is available but only through Jesus Christ and his finished work on the cross.
Will folks allow you to say this?  
Possibly not as that would disturb their 'peace...'

Apple, that company famed for making money and watching your every move, have introduced a new 'iphone.'  This one retails at around £1400 and people in various parts of the world have queued up overnight just to be the first to buy this product.
Are they stupid?

At the UKIP party conference, yes they still have one, there are a variety of items on sale, as you may expect.  Chequers Fudge and a UKIP branded thong are available but the best seller appears to be the condoms with Nigel Farage's face upon the packet, for when you have a 'Hard Brexit.'  
This is being advertised as the best way to avoid pregnancy!