Thursday, 29 December 2011


A few weekends ago we made our annual trip to Wimereux in France with our good friends Michael and Penny. A good chance for some Christmas shopping and a nice stay at Hotel du Centre with a warm welcome and excellent food (and wine!).

Needless to say, there was one hopeful stowaway.

Wimereux promenade - not as cold as previous years, but still pretty bracing.

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Saturday, 24 December 2011

Happy Christmas

Thank you to everyone for following the blog throughout 2011.

Merry Christmas and a very Happy 2012!

Only one more sleep to go...or perhaps six for Poppy?

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Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Quick - just in time for Christmas!,Product.aspx?artnr=34-6723

What do you think?

St.Saviour's Christmas Tree Festival

Visited St.Saviour's Church in St.Albans on Sunday to see their Christmas Tree Festival.
Very good it was too - there were 93 trees!

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Thursday, 15 December 2011

The next generation

Oh dear, if he doesn't buck his ideas up he'll be delivering newspapers for the rest of his life?
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Monday, 12 December 2011

Rochester outing 4

Nice view with the cathedral in the foreground and the castle in the background.

We finished with an organ recital by Roger Sayer. We were able to see what was going on via the screen which had been set up especially for us, with a video camera on the keyboards and foot pedals.

Roger Sayer kindly joined us afterwards for questions. You can see the screen better in this photo.
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Thursday, 8 December 2011

Rochester outing 3

Our tour was due to end at noon in the High Street - how's that for timing?
And right outside a pub too!

Rochester Cathedral crypt during our second guided tour of the day.

Nice photo do you think?
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Monday, 5 December 2011

Rochester outing 2

Here's Rochester's Norman castle

They were getting ready for a re-enactment weekend.

Views from the castle of the River Medway.

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Thursday, 1 December 2011

Museum outing to Rochester

A little while ago SWMBO and I arranged an outing for the Friends of Redbourn Museum, to Rochester.
We had a very good trip round the M25 and arrived at exactly our scheduled time, had refreshments at the visitor centre, then we split into three groups and had walking tours of the city.
Our guide was this very enthusiastic "Lady in Red".

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Saturday, 26 November 2011

Heston Blumenthal's Waitrose Mince Pies

If you wonder why the pies don't smell of Christmas Trees and taste of Christmas as promised, it's because you haven't read the instructions properly and you will later discover the sachet of pine sugar in the box where you have left it.
Oh well, I suppose I now have twice as much "Christmas Taste" for the next batch of pies we get!

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Thursday, 24 November 2011

Ocado - didn't you read my mushroom post?

Had an Ocado delivery last night and was tempted by their Mumbai Spice Banquet Box (Yes, being lazy). Unfortunately they chose to substitute this with their Punjabi Thali which contains Mushroom Rice! I would normally pick out the bits of mushroom but this contained mushroom paste which made that a little difficult. So, no rice for me. I could easily have cooked some but as the box came with two naan breads, I decided I didn't really need rice. The Mumbai box is apparently available even now, so I don't know what happened.
The 'couldn't deliver an alternative' section was quite unbelievable. I ordered Hovis white sliced bread and they reckoned they didn't have any other white (sliced?) bread to replace it with. I ordered double cream and they had no alternative - what about single cream or a second long-life double cream which I had ordered and received anyway?
Needless to say (you know me) they have received an email and I will let you know what their response is.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Shaggy Parasol mushrooms - or are they?

These mushrooms suddenly sprouted (as they do) in our garden.
They were very spectacular, and the flat version in the bottom photo was the size of a small dinner plate.
SWMBO got the books out and identified it as a Shaggy Parasol which was confirmed(?) when it bruised orange/red when cut.
The book advised trying a small amount (which must be cooked) first, so I fried up a couple of pieces and stood by the phone "999 ready" as she tried it.
All was fine and she will probably have a larger amount this evening.
Unlike me, SWMBO likes and can eat mushrooms.
If I even have a button mushroom, there are dire consequences involving toilet roll...
Nuff said!

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Saturday, 19 November 2011

River Weaver 2

Huge salt works near Northwich with lorries endlessly entering and leaving the site - possibly 24 hours a day?

Back at the lift to travel back up to the Trent & Mersey canal

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Thursday, 17 November 2011

River Weaver

Being released on to the River Weaver

Waiting to enter Hunt's Lock No.2

Ramblers rambling over Hunt's Lock

Leaving Hunt's Lock and heading for Winsford
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Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Anderton Lift 3

Man taking photo of man taking photo as he goes up, and we go down.
Caisson going up on hydraulic ram.

Down at River Weaver level.
We have booked our passage back up for tomorrow.
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