Monday, 28 July 2008

I love living here :)

I went fishing yesterday, after taking advice from my doctor that I should try and use my shoulder as much as I can, I found it didn't actually tax my shoulder that much, as the river is only about 20 feet across at its widest so no back breaking casting to be done. and despite my injury I currently hold the record for biggest trout pulled from our river :)... OK it's not massive but from such a small river it's gargantuan, and yes that is my Nokia 6070 next to it for scale :)

(I've just been reliably informed by my (less of the) nerdy fishing friend Chris, that it's a sea trout not a brown trout, and apparently they travel in shoals !!! so I will be pulling the rest out hopefully over the next few weeks !! :¬) )

We cooked it that night, so from river to pan in about an hour or so, with a nice fresh salad picked from the garden can't get fresher than that.... but in time honoured fashion during my fishing expedition..... I did injure myself, not on barbed wire whilst negotiating getting under/over/through it, or slipping on wet rocks, no it was far simpler than that, I was wearing canvas shoes and I was standing in the river fishing, and because the river was cold I couldn't feel my canvas shoes slowly eroding the back of my heels, so when I got out of the river and feeling returned I turned into an instant cripple, one of my heels was actually bleeding, and I wasn't looking forward to the 1/2 mile trudge up the track back to the house, but I got there.... eventually, got ZERO sympathy but they were impressed with my trout !! only thing now is I have to wait for my heel to get better before I can go fishing again (or in fact walking too far again)

We had some friends come down last night for a few hours after we had our barbeque which was nice, had a laugh and generally a good time, they left fairly late and we fell into bed quite tired after a hot sunny and busy day, I'm hoping to go back to work this week at some point, my shoulder still gives me jip but usually only when I lift my arm above shoulder height or rotate it too much.

Nothing much else to report, weather is brilliant (bit too hot for my liking), kids behaving etc, etc.

anyway I had to blog today to show off my whale of a fish ;¬)

Friday, 25 July 2008

I've been signed off work for two weeks .... :¬(

It's my right shoulder, apparently I have a rotor cuff tear see picture on left, it flared up after an Aikido training session, and I thought it had practically gone but it's come back, I went to the doctors and she said that by the sounds of it I had suffered a partial dislocation, judging by the type of pain I was suffering and where it hurt most and the lack of vertical movement, and apparently according to the doctor after I explained the rotation and movement used in the Aikido move we were practising at the time, there would have been a 90% chance of complete dislocation and it was only my tendons and muscles that actually kept the joint together, which have now of course been stretched :( so not a happy bunny at the moment :(....

So Andrea has to put up with me for two weeks, although I think she is secretly happy that I'm at home to be honest :) not much to report on the family life front, nothing untoward happening, no major fall outs, no beatings carried out, (well except "FlyerGate" but that's been sorted now)... just general family life. Freya has come out in an awful rash, we think it's down to a change of washing powder, we have switched back now so hopefully that will put an end to it, it really was awful seeing her skin all blotchy, but she is a trooper still smiling and laughing even though her skin must have been itchy, we've had her to the doctors and she is being slathered in aqueous cream head to toe every night, it seems to have lessened the eczema quite a bit :)

Hopefully she will be clear of it before we go camping in August to Shell Island

It's a truly massive place at 300 acres (see above) of sand dunes, grasslands, beaches and hopefully hot sunshine, I think we have the camping lark completely sussed now, all mod cons, well most mod cons, I simply refuse to take a chemical toilet, nothing wrong with the ones provided by the campsite and at least I don't have to empty them :) which is always a plus, the kids are in for a bit of a shock though, there is absolutely nothing to do except walk, climb massive sand dunes, take in the scenery, walk a bit more, maybe a bit of swimming in the clear waters surrounding the island and just generally relax and forget about the world for a week :) bliss.... they will be doing their own washing up was well which might come as a bit of a shock to them, no clean plate or cutlery then no lunch, dinner or tea :) (well they can but personally I wouldn't like my lunch placed over a dirty plate from the previous meal).... we are going up in the Jeep and the others are travelling up by train well most of the others, the shadow boy is travelling up with us but he will have his DS lite to keep him occupied (with headphones.....bliss again) and of course Freya, Chris is bringing his sea kayak and fishing gear (hopefully) so who knows we may well be eating sea bass at some point, it will be quite a camping extravaganza with 16 of us last count (I think), roll on the summer jollies, warm beer and good company :)

I'm off to Cardigan tonight for a farewell bash for my solicitors and good friends the Taylors, they are off to sunnier climes at last !! They are becoming fully paid up Lesbians (Colin included !!) and are moving to Lesbos to their retirement villa, (it's alright for some!!) we are sending them off with some bubbly and finishing off with a Chinese meal at the only Chinese restaurant in Cardigan, should be fun although I won't be drinking anything much because I have to drive home :(

Right I have stuff to do, like clean a kitchen and hoover and generally spruce the place up one handed before Mein Fuhrer comes back from Llanelli with my step daughter.....(now where is the Ipod with "I want to break free !!" by Queen) most fitting methinks :)

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Being born yesterday...... etc

It seems my step daughter skived off school yesterday and the day before, her excuse being it's the last week of school and all her friends are skiving off school as well, needless to say Andrea went ballistic after she found out from school, and grounded her, and has told her any more nonsense and she will be grounded for weeks to come, plus it looks like she will tapping the boards outside the headmasters office today with a possible exclusion/suspension on the cards, which looking at it is precisely what she wants anyway, because it would mean not going to school.

I have a feeling she thinks she will be swanning off to town with her "mates" to enjoy her suspension/time off on the run up to the beginning of the school holidays...... wrongggggggg....

She even tried the leaving her school bag complete with dirty uniform in my car last night no doubt because come the morning she would be using the old chestnut "ohhh I can't go to school my uniform is dirty...excuse"..... alas Andrea recovered it and washed it and ironed it last night.... no excuse...all bases covered... hence the being born yesterday title, I knew when I picked her up from town after work that she hadn't been to school even before Andrea told me, because when I asked her how school was, she had all the tell tale signs of lying and she is VERY bad at it.

If she does get suspended, we both support any decision the school will make on her, and not to make it an easy ride all internet access will be turned off at home (on the kids PC and her linux box in her bedroom).... we are not going to make her possible suspension a pleasurable experience by any means, in fact she will soon realise being at home with nothing to do and bored out of her skull will make school seem like an exciting alternative.

I think half of the problem is the crowd she has got in with in town, which is precisely one of the reasons why we decided to live out in the sticks, but what can you do ? you can't curtail her social life with her friends (well you can if she doesn't toe the line at home) and you also can't choose her "friends" for her, they are all decisions she has to make good or bad (mostly bad it seems to me at the moment) but it's all a part of growing up...

it does make me laugh when teenage stunts and skives are pulled, both Andrea and I did them all before and more, they seem to think it's all ground breaking stuff and the grown ups couldn't possibly have a clue what is going on...yeah right :)

I know what my parents were saying now when I was a teenager "you will have to get up early to pull the wool over my eyes ...boy" never a truer word said ;¬) what goes around comes around eh ?

Karma it is.....Karma I tell you :)

The only other thing of note is Andrea finding that sanding my teeth this morning with some wet and dry P600 paper was weird... ? God doesn't everybody do that ? ;¬) Truth of the matter is, I had a filling and the dentist had left the front surface rough with residue white polymer (the stuff they use now instead of mercury based fillings).... it eventually wears down/off, but it's a one hell of a lot quicker if you sand it off ..... nice smooth finish now.... next stop a respray bright white with racing stripes ;¬)

addendum: Just had an update from Andrea she didn't get a suspension, she has to spend the entire day with the assistant headmaster......unlucky !!!

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Bats and Idiots !!!

Right!!! the idiots first ... I was taking the xbox360 recluse to Aikido training last night and we noticed some very slow moving cars along the road peering into properties and stopping to look at walls, it took a while to sink in what they were doing but then it dawned on me they were treasure hunters, these are people who think it's fun to stop on blind bends and block roads whilst looking for cryptic clues posted on gates and walls and telegraph poles, each clue points to the next clue etc etc etc ad nauseum ....woohoo fun times !!!

anyway there is a blind bend at the bottom of our road and there is NOTHING ever on that bend except perhaps a depressed rabbit with its eyes closed and paws pressed together wanting to meet its maker "Frith" and end it all.... but this particular night there were three cars parked on my side of the road with the "idiots" wandering around outside a farm gate and on the road with car doors open looking for the next clue, needless to say I had to stand on the brakes or die, so after my blood stopped boiling I carried on..... gesturing like a wild man using the universal "Billy Connelly" sign language at the "idiots"... then to really put the cat amongst the pigeons a few more miles down the road yet another road block of "idiots" as other road users coming the other way tooted their way past, eventually I got to Whitland and dropped off the Xbox boy and started to make my way back, it was then that my cunning plan took hold of me and refused to let me go....

I stopped at three of the places where I saw a clue posted as I drove to Whitland and I simply drove up and ripped them off and threw them in my foot well, and considering you need each clue in turn to get to the next... they were buggered before they started really :)

funny that the cars dried up after that...

call me a killjoy.... who cares !! in one (actually three) swoop(s) I've reduced their carbon footprint by making them go home and watch Eastenders and probably saved a few of them from being horribly mangled by a head on collision with a combine harvester or worse...

The only other two things of note that night was catching my youngest step son guzzling lemonade straight from the bottle, I said to him "Get a glass !!" he replied with a defiant loud burp, so I picked up the newly opened bottle of lemonade and tipped its entire contents down the sink right in front of his agog eyes he asked "why did you do that ?" I replied "Well I like lemonade too, but I prefer it not to be mixed with other peoples spit to be honest"...(blank stare) ..... he knows now if he is caught drinking anything straight from the bottle it goes down the drain, no arguments .....Andrea agrees it's a vile habit especially when others are drinking out of the same bottle for days on end.... we've been telling him for months not to do it but its never worked... who knows maybe a bit of shock treatment might work .... now where did I put those electrodes ...... hmmmm ;¬)

and the other incident that night was of my walking disaster of a step daughter leaving her bag at a fast food emporium in Carmarthen complete with her school books and hair dryer and hair straighteners, which wasn't made any better by her ringing up and telling her mum just before xbox boy and I had to leave for Aikido that she had remembered she had left her bag at the junk food emporium whilst on the bus but THEN got off the bus mid way to her sleep over with her friend and THEN realised that she didn't have enough money to go back to said junk food emporium via bus OR to her friends and then to add insult to injury .......telling her mum that she had also forgotten her school clothes and had left them at home, needless to say Andrea was not impressed and didn't despite her best efforts recover her bag....the police have been informed but we aren't holding our breath....... rolls eyes

Now we get onto the really sensible Bats, all of a sudden we seem to be over run by bats the ones we have are called Leisler’s bat and we seem to be finding them everywhere, Andrea had one hanging from her work trousers this morning and the screech could be heard in Swansea (her not the bat), I released it seeing as nobody else will touch them.... I released one last night which had found its way into the kids lounge and there was one in the bathroom, so that's three in one night !! and there were another two previous to that...

they are dozy little things during the day, you can pick them up and put them outside without so much as a flutter, technically you need a license to handle bats, but you are perfectly within your rights to remove a bat from your house for it's own safety as long as you don't harm it prior to it's release and at £5000 a pop you really don't want to squish a bat.....

in fact here is a summary of Bats and the Law

All UK bats and their roosts are protected by law. Since the first legislation, introduced in 1981, that gave strong legal protection to all bat species and their roosts in England, Scotland and Wales, additional legislation and amendments have been implemented in all countries within the UK. For all countries of the UK therefore, the legal protection for bats and their roosts may be summarised as follows:

You will be committing a criminal offence if you:

1. Deliberately* capture, injure or kill a bat
2. Intentionally or recklessly disturb a bat in its roost or deliberately disturb a group of bats
3. Damage or destroy a bat roosting place (even if bats are not occupying the roost at the time)
4. Possess or advertise/sell/exchange a bat (dead or alive) or any part of a bat
5. Intentionally or recklessly obstruct access to a bat roost

*In a court, 'deliberately' will probably be interpreted as someone who, although not intending to capture/injure or kill a bat, performed the relevant action, being sufficiently informed and aware of the consequence his/her action will most likely have.)

There are a few defences in law; for instance, low-level disturbance of bats or obstruction of a roost access may be construed as 'the incidental result of an otherwise lawful operation'. However, it would be a matter for experts to ascertain whether the disturbance was considered to be of a low enough level to fall within this defence. Similarly, it would be for experts to ascertain that obstruction of a roost access didn't amount to damage or destruction of a roost. Depending upon the detail of the actions, it may be that neither incident would be 'eligible' for the incidental result defence in court.
Other defences include:

1. Tending/caring for a bat solely for the purpose of restoring it to health and subsequent release
2. Mercy killing where there is no reasonable hope of recovery (provided that person did not cause the injury in the first place - in which case the illegal act has already taken place).

Penalties on conviction - the maximum fine is £5,000 per incident or per bat (some roosts contain several hundred bats), up to six months in prison, and forfeiture of items used to commit the offence, eg vehicles, plant, machinery.

Monday, 7 July 2008

In real terms

what does that mean exactly ? I refer to a recent HM treasury spokeswoman saying "The cost of motoring and taxation in real terms is lower now than in 1999"... so what exactly is "real" terms ?

real to me means "oh hell I've just hit my thumb with a claw hammer and that really really hurts" or "I really shouldn't have put that much petrol on the BBQ to get it to light"

That to me is real, what the politicians mean by real is "yes it's costing the motorist more in fantasy terms, but in our world of altered reality it's costing them much less than they think it does, therefore we've brought the cost down for them"

what utter tosh, Where do they get their figures from ??? and which Swedish masseur pummels them into the answer (lie) they want to give the public ???

I could have sworn my car road tax has gone up three times in the last five years, and lets not mention fuel costs which the government creams off a large proportion for their own coffers, they are currently collecting five times in tax what the government in 1975 used to spend on the roads, and we aren't even coming close to having the road system we used to have, granted there are many more cars on the road since 1975 but equally their revenue is many more times greater because of it, if the Government didn't waste public funding like Severn Trent water patch up their leaking water pipes then maybe the UK wouldn't be in such a state !!!

and now Gordon the moron is urging us not to waste food I wonder how much that committee cost to set-up and give that answer ?? it's all just political posturing and one one-upmanship with the Tory leader demanding that anybody caught carrying a knife without good reason should be locked up, hmmmmm good plan send them to prison where they can learn to become proper criminals over night at the university of thug....

how about looking back at when it all started going wrong..... when the police were taken off the beat and put into panda cars and turned into pen pushers over the years instead of someone you would bump into in the town and you might even know his/her name ? or when you actually called the police they would actually turn up at your door, and when corporal punishment was banned in schools because it infringed the little darlings civil liberties and human rights ???.... yes.... well you law makers and policy pundits are reaping the rewards of that particular namby pamby policy now aren't you ? with 17 fatal stabbings in London alone this year, if kids are brought up to realise they don't have to respect a thing, which mainly starts in school by the way, or are given no moral compass early on in life, then sticking a knife in somebody because they got hacked off with them wouldn't mean a damn thing to them, neither would the threat of jailing them for carrying a knife... the damage was done years ago when they learned they could stand up to a teacher or anybody else, say anything they liked to them and simply got away with a suspension from school or less.

but we are far better off now than then... In real terms of course ;¬)

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Some visitors today

My sister and her family from London are down this end for a few days, I think to tie in with my Aunty Jean and her daughter Sue from Australia coming across, so we will have a bit of a full house, I've a feeling Ffion the xbox360 recluse's friend is coming across as well at some point, so it will be all men and women to the pumps for a few hours I should think, nothing much happening except I've been told I will get my 1st Anniversary present today, I have no idea what it is except it's taken 10 days to arrive...

work is in a bit of a lull today, I think we did all the IT fire fighting yesterday, it's been hell recently with servers crashing and falling over all over the place, it's the usual though after a roll out of security patches from Microsoft they usually break more than they fix !!! we have been spending most of the time mopping up the errors and putting things right it seems.... Roll on the weekend is all I can say, although I have a nagging doubt that I'm supposed to be putting up a stud partition for Freya's bedroom this weekend or was it the first week of my summer holidays..... no doubt I will be reminded at some point...

to be honest I can't wait for today to be over at work, I'm so tired today.... ahh well it's just turned 3:00pm so only an hour and a half to kill, I think I may have to get myself another coffee and start browsing the internet again from the start because I've just got to the last page

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

When I wake up in the morning, love
And the sunlight hurts my eyes
And something without warning, love
Bears heavy on my mind

Then I look at you
And the world's alright with me
Just one look at you
And I know it's gonna be
A lovely day
... lovely day, lovely day, lovely day ...

When the day that lies ahead of me
Seems impossible to face
When someone else instead of me
Always seems to know the way

Then I look at you
And the world's alright with me
Just one look at you
And I know it's gonna be
A lovely day.....

When the day that lies ahead of me
Seems impossible to face
When someone else instead of me
Always seems to know the way

Then I look at you
And the world's alright with me
Just one look at you
And I know it's gonna be
A lovely day......

Bill Withers