Saturday, 4 July 2015

Try, try and Triathlon again...

A month or so back I started my working week late on Sunday, staying with my SiL and brother in Buckinghamshire. Doing this puts me in early morning proximity of my head office which is 125 miles from my house ordinarily.

Given that we were all together on Sunday we took advantage of London proximity and watched the World Series Triathlon at Hyde Park. The British Brownlee brothers absolutely nailed it and the crowd went bonkers! A completely happy Sunday of shouting and larks.


The Fifteen

A year and a little while ago,  my (now) sister in law married my brother. It really was a terrific day with the family better off for the outcome!

This weekend we all came together to celebrate the event and to just be together as a family across the generations.

We had all been together in January for Ma and Pa's fiftieth wedding anniversary and at that bash we all agreed how pleasant it would be to come together in the summer, just for the sake of it.

This we did, and we did it well after a minor role by yours truly as social secretary. We should have been seventeen but alas, we were two down a couple of days out. We  arrived in Goodrich across last Friday and Saturday and there was much delight, running around the garden, swapping stories, raising glasses and eating mightily. The weather was perfect!

Saturday, 13 June 2015

An active Saturday.

After a week on the road with only moderate mileage,  (map below showing phone signal pick up between masts) I came home last night fully intending to strip off. My wallpaper. However, the call of The Barley Mow was too much and I felt I deserved a pint of terrific ale. Having satisfied that need, I came home to make dinner, watch the Isle of Man TT Seniors and go to bed. A fine Friday.

This morning with the stripping still to do, and an appointment with the back yard, I woke at half four, listened to the radio until half five, watched a few you tube vids and sprang into Saturday just before six.  Here's the photo story.

It is a little after ten now and a day of idle stretches before me.



Tuesday, 26 May 2015

On axe...

With my burner now in and ready to burn, clearly it needs fuel. Things to make it go, you might say.

My brother and I had totalled one short axe a few weeks back, using it as a conduit for the force from hammer blows to split logs.  It worked on you tube but we didn't quite have it down and the axe had to go in for  a new handle (sorry dad). With wider research on technique and a bit of on line shopping,  I happened upon a wood splitting set from Screwfix and set to this bank holiday Monday with the result below. All managed with limbs intact to boot!


Saturday, 23 May 2015

Woodburner - day 2 and lighting.

Friday saw the completion of the burner install here in BS5. There are some decorative tweaks yet to complete but all in all, the wood burner is functional and fitted - and very, very toasty.

It was a right caper being here for both days of the fitting and I asked tons of questions.

Here he is....Bernard the burner via a time lapse and a series of stills.


Thursday, 21 May 2015

Wood burner Install - day 1

A very exciting day has made its way to Blog BS5. I have finally got to the installation point for a wood burner here in the house.

The house is  about 115 years old, so naturally it has a chimney, and today after a decade of residence I stuck my head up there and took a look. There it was, quietly and reliably intact, ready to take a new lining for many a happy fire to come.

Here are some images of the day 1 install. There is solid wood, slate, iron, brick, render, cement, history, fascination and  all manner of conflagratory potential.

More updates on day 2, and at the weekend, maybe even a real fire movie.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Walking Week!

Almost a week ago I left BS5 to spend a Sunday afternoon driving 245 miles up to The Lake District in Cumbria. Walking Week had finally come around - this had been in the diary for ages!

I work for Rohan, a retailer  for 'Outdoor, Adventure, Travel'. We sell top end clothing to suit that strap line and the week was all about days with Store Managers trying out gear and just getting together to do what our customers do. Each lunchtime a set of Managers joined us at Windermere railway station, we had an afternoon walk, dinner together in the evening, a morning walk and then back to the station to start all over again,  Monday through to Friday. I have thirteen Stores and a mix of guests were from my Area. It was relaxed and informal and whilst no great distance was covered (maximum walk 6 miles), the elevation was full on!

We were based in Hawkshead on the edge of Windermere. We walked Red Screes, Tarn Hows, Grizedale Forest, and a load of other steep climbs. It was fantastic!  We also made a video to show later in the year. Larks a plenty, healthy, fresh air...and paid to boot!

I had never stayed in the Lake District before but I will go again. It was my birthday in the week, and the last few years I have been on a dull work  errand but 2015/43 was memorably different and I am grateful.

Top stuff!

Thursday, 30 April 2015


This week was a terrific family week. A run of days away from work, free from distractions and noise. We had planned it awhile, the success all down to my older brother and sister in law who just got it all spot on! We had a few days in Criccieth on the Llyn peninsula.

Ma and Pa and we three sons with our sister in law, Anna. And Toby and Quaddy and perfect weather.

Greg and Anna  have visited the house five times before and this was my third visit, but this time it was all of us as a family. We met them there, driving up last Sunday in no hurry at all and in a car full of silliness.

Day 1 was just unloading all the stuff we took (a lot of which poured) and settling in and catching up. Day 2 was action packed with a visit to a rabbit farm which also had chickens, pigs, goats, peacocks, horses, sheep and a donkey. We went to the childhood home of David Lloyd George and took a look into the past. After that we had a quick tea stop and then.....steam train action between Porthmadog and Beddgelert! Slow roast lamb for dinner and lots of wine.

Day three was the fantastic, near endless beach at Black Rock Sands. It is about 2 miles long and you can drive on it too! We walked miles and miles and miles across that day and the week and there was never a moment short of ease, relaxation or just simple togetherness. We also had fish and chips from a fantastic little place just nearby with a brotherly pint ahead of collecting the order.  I could do all that again and again with the Welsh welcome of the village and the endless, simple fooling about.