Consider the woodlouse

My lovely friend Linda (and her husband Keith) furnished me with a very large bundle of their carefully forced rhubarb. Huzzah thought I, I will make some rhubarb jam.  I’ve never been a fan of rhubarb, when I was growing up there was never enough sugar with it and consequently it forced the human face into a myriad of contortions.  However… if I make jam, the problem is solved as there is plenty of sugar involved.  See exhibit a. ( below ) 

The unpredictable fierceness of the new hob ensured that, rather than a batch of jammy goodness, I made a batch of new fangled (previously un-invented)’rhubarb yuk’.  What can I say?  Mr Williams said not to waste it as ” he would put it on his breakfast cereals”.  However, the jars are still there in the pantry, all present and correct; but to be fair to him he did find a use for it.  It made a stunning anchor for the dust sheets, whilst painting the kitchen ceiling.  I dropped the ball there a little as I should have taken a photo of him for my ‘Lessert Spotted SAAB male part three’ feature.  

Mr W came home from the shops last week with a present for me – a window cleaning sponge on a stick!!!!  To be fair, the last present he purchased was a Coach handbag, so I’m happy to take one for the team.

Whilst gardening this week I came across a lot of  woodlice (woodlye, a ‘crusting of woodlice’ – I wonder what the noun for a collection of woodlice is).  These little chaps are mostly forgotten and hated, after all their only claim to fame is appearing in ‘All creatures great and small’ as baby armadillo.  I hadn’t realised that, like hedgehogs, they curl themselves into ball when sensing danger.  This explains their common names of pill bug and roly poly.  I’m designating these my favourite isopods crustaceans – remember other isopod crustaceans are available.

I emote – therefore I am

I didn’t fall down a ravine, die of exposure on the moors or get sucked into a bog.  Unfortunately I had already purchased and worn in the walking boots.  The art and craft weekend at Halsey was great, but the nearest we got to the great outdoors was the front lawn.  Grandad’s COPD was outclassed by the gentleman who arrived atop his happy shopper scooter and I soon realised that there would be no yomping and that I should have just spent the boot money on another handbag.

At Pod’s Cottage Grandad dabbles with painting, when he disappears off to paint he tells us he is off to ’emote’.  He makes a lot of mess doing this so is encouraged to emote in the shed, the garden or some else’s house.  The tutor at Halsway soon had him sussed out ( he has lots of focus on small details) and instead of watercolours of the house and grounds, got him working on a larger scale.  At one point he was working on a large piece in charcoals using the charcoal tied to the end of a long stick.  I was just happy that someone was encouraging me to make mess, there was lots of rubbing in and the session culminated with me doing a fine impression of a Victorian chimney sweep (albeit a very affluent, rotund sweep so not suitable for sweeping at all).  Apparently there is lots of charcoaling happening at Pod’s Cottage; there is also lots of Mum going around with a damp cloth, wiping off handprints.

I think Halsway Manor suited Gramps as meals were announced with a gong and the tea urn arrived at regular intervals.  There were also no limits on the number of biscuits he could have with his tea (unlike at home).  The staff at the Manor were lovely, the atmosphere great and the catering somewhere between a holiday camp, school dinners and the quiet seaside hotels of my childhood.  We were entertained by the folks on the Nyckelharpa course.  The first day of painting was difficult on the ears as the beginners were only repeating the same three or four notes, but by Sunday we didn’t mind them joining us on the grass.  The musicians came from as far afield as Germany and Chile. 

On Friday night, Fightclub (Knit Club) celebrated it’s eight anniversary and moved to a new venue at the Friends Meeting House.  This venue isn’t strictly new as it is where the club first started.  Unfortunately an addictions group also met on the same evening and some of the older ladies were offended and shocked by having to step over bodies on the floor, so the venue was switched.  I’m made of sterner stuff, I have teenagers and therefore am quite used to stepping over bodies.