Archive | January, 2015

January Lingers

24 Jan

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I think it is fair to say that January isn’t the best month to spend in the UK. Everybody seems to be hibernating for a start. And who can blame them? With the frantic Christmas preparations and celebrations over, diets and “dry month” resolutions still  being kept, the icy weather seems to be the finishing blow that knocks any desire for outdoor activity.
The market is reduced to a mere handful of stalls none of whom seem to be doing much in the way of trade. This is not helped by the fact that they’ve been moved from their usual position on the High Street as most of it is currently dug up. Hardly surprising, then, if everybody chooses to huddle up at home, venturing out only for work and the necessities. Even the social media feeds seem quiet. I guess nobody has much to write about.

Our car was bought to tow a caravan, a job it did extremely well. It is also excellent at shifting “stuff” around the continent as our itinerant life style dictates. It is, however, simply too big for me. I have never developed a sense of where the car starts and ends, being unable to see either front or rear bumpers or corners. This is why I backed into an invisible plastic bollard. I do question the wisdom of putting said bollard there in the first place but that’s another rant.
I can’t blame anyone else for knocking the wing mirror off, though. The problem with being a two-car-single-driveway family is that the vehicles have to be juggled around depending on who is going out. When this occurs during a dark and icy evening the temptation to manoeuvre without really clearing the windows is great. Gateposts can get in the way.

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January Begins

11 Jan

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Returning to the UK on New Year’s Eve meant I only experienced the icy remnants of the Boxing Day snowfall. I was glad to see it go as the weather turned milder. “Milder” I say. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t hugging the radiator with a passion Neil can only dream about. Maybe I could have ventured out in the car but turning the ignition key merely produced a groan. I wasn’t going anywhere.
Now I know there are many women who aren’t phased by engines, just as there are many who could whip up a pair of curtains on a sewing machine, frequently the same woman. I am not that woman. Quite frankly I flatter myself that I’d have better success restarting a human heart than I would a car battery. Thankfully, I count myself very fortunate to have a son who produces a battery charger, reads the instructions and says “It’s not rocket science”. OK, so sparks flew at one point and I worried I might have to quit bragging about what abilities I might have. The car started. He also fixed the toilet.

The nearest I got to a resolution this year was to keep up some exercise while I was at home and away from the gym facilities I’d got used to. Alex has a cross trainer that I’ve always considered something of a torture device. But needs must. With it set at the lowest resistance possible, I had a go. At the best of times this is an activity that should not only be done with the curtains drawn but also with the lights turned off to avoid any possibility of a silhouette traumatising the neighbours. It was abandoned when the cold I must have picked up on the flight developed. Limbs flapping about is one thing, blowing snot bubbles down the nose while struggling to breath is quite another. So much for resolutions.

Christmas Photos

4 Jan

So, this is where I bore everybody with photos from our Christmas. Indulge me. I’m back in the UK now and I’m really not coping with the cold. Just call me Blue Nose.

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Tables all set up on the terrace for Christmas Lunch.

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The chocolate fountains. Now, turkey and sprouts or straight for the chocolate? Well, what do you think? How well you know me.

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After Christmas in Abu Dhabi a few days down the road in Dubai. This is the marina beach.

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Early morning shellseeker.

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Not where I expected my first sighting of camels to be.

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Dining in the street.