15 minutes before heading for lunch

It’s raining. Deep sighing. It always rains when a) it’s haircut day and b) walking to town to meet friends for lunch.

Photo: My daughter – her doggie

Today it’s a walk to lunch day. Hey-ho, the lunch and chatter will make it worth while. Big coat and large hat will keep me dry.

Yesterday was my first experience of going to work in the dark, and coming home in the dark. Left the house at 7.20am, and left work at 4.05pm. A new colleague had said to expect this, and I’d rather pooh-poohed it. HA! how daft was I. Not sure I’m going to like this though. 

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone, and my credit card was flashed about a little. Hubster got a new food mixer and I got – ahem – let’s leave it at an overlocker. Anything else purchased was purely incidental.

Talking of Credit Cards, learnt today my card has been scammed. Well done to my bank for seeing some odd transactions and blocking them mind. Seems these bloody crooks have racked up quite a few thousand Rands of purchases. GRRRRRRRRRR! 

Got myself a Fitbit in the sale – not admitting to buying anything else. Explained to the sales lady all that was needed was a basic model that tells me how lazy I am. Well, money well spent, daily it vibrates, many times a day, telling me to move or perhaps I’ve passed out. Just received the obligatory vibrate, so best I get up, run around the house for a wee while before heading for lunch.

If you’ve fallen on this blog, it is all about getting me to write again. Taking 15 minutes a day – hopefully – and writing whatever comes to  mind. 

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15 minutes – a long time coming

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photo: mine – Boschendal

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photo: mine – view of Waterfront Cape Town from The Silo rooftop bar

Shew, since my last post plenty has gone on. Evidently not a single spare 15 minutes to blog though!  Unbelievable.

Well, most importantly was going home to Cape Town for 2 weeks – got back last Tuesday.  Going back is not so much a holiday, rather shifting a life from the UK back to SA, slipping into our old ways and patterns effortlessly.  Loads of eating good food, drinking good wine and seeing all our family and friends.

Hubster was barely moments of the plane when he began questioning the reasons for living in the UK again. Prompted by being gloved in the stunning blue of the sky, and space and familiarity. If it’s possible to be gloved in space.

Back in the UK there was an abrupt reminder of winter having arrived. And how dark it is by 5pm. Honestly can’t remember this from last year. We’ve already looked for the shortest day and willing the longer days to begin again.

Jobs to do today:

  1. blog – tick and done
  2. garden – shoes are ready, need to get a warm jacket and hat
  3. go to work
  4. catch up on Strictly

#needtodream

 

 

 

15 minutes out with a giraffe and frolleague

 

giraffe

photo from here

Funny how you think about things, but recently I reminded myself about a night out with a frolleague. The night itself wasn’t memorable with regards to where we went – bar in Greenpoint, Cape Town – for it was all about having a drink and just chilling. Anyway, what makes me smile about that night is how this frolleague must have been over 6ft tall, while I’m around 5ft 1 or 2 when extending my neck. She wore heels too so you can imagine how we looked. She tall, very blonde, very dynamic personality, and me short, dark and wearing flats.  Quite possibly she being the giraffe, and me being the keeper, tagging along behind

 

 

 

 

 

What the heck is this blog about?

Should you have fallen onto this blog, the purpose it serves is to ignite my love of writing once more by simply typing whatever is on my mind for 15 minutes and stopping

15 minutes with deaf ears, colleagues, M25, M1 and a breathing duvet

I should have had loads of 15-minute blogs by now. I’ve worked many through my mind all eager to hit the old keyboard and then nothing.

So trying to do a recap of a few:

  1. One was about a colleague who rents a room in a house with several others. Colleague explained that on walking into a room where her housemates are they burst out laughing at her. Are these people not miserable examples of human beings?
  2. Another was about the same colleague who was told it would not be possible to attend college in the UK as her English was not good enough, and this despite holding a full-on hour or more conversation in English and handing over English coursework etc.  I give this young person much credit, for at the end she said something along the lines of “well let’s see if you understand this then. Please call your supervisor I’d like to speak to them instead.” Suffice to say she was accepted by said supervisor immediately
  3. Sat on the M25 and M1 today for so long I might as well have got out, hitched a bag over my shoulder and strolled home. Jeepers, what a way to spend a day off. Stuck in traffic no matter the route chosen. Took me 2 3/4 hrs to do a 1 1/2 hr trip.  Good job there were rhubarb and custard sweets in a little box at hand to work my way through. Mind you, they did leave my mouth all claggy like. Note to self, take water with next time you travel
  4. Have completed 2 online hearing tests recently – as you do. One just now. The first one told me I had some hearing loss and a proper test would be good. I scoffed because the hubster is the one with the hearing problems. There be no-wax build up in his lug-holes, it’s just good old going blooming deaf. And how do I know? Holy smokes, the homeowners 3 streets away have taken to treating our house as podcasts. As in taking up seat in their lounge, flinging open the windows and just listening to our TV. OK, a slight exaggeration. OK, OK, a complete exaggeration! Truth is the volume on the TV breaks the sound barrier whenever he has the control. Second hearing test tells me no problem with my hearing, get on with your life and get the hubster to the test rather
  5. Much chatter on the radio today about switching the central heating on this weekend. I don’t know what the fuss is all about, ours has hardly been off. We will be inching it up though 🙂
  6. Hubster is away for the weekend. Doing some gardening and stuffs with his sister. I will be watching the TV at a low level. Working the graveyard shift Saturday and Sunday and with luck getting some yoga in
  7. Hubster and I are fed up with our duvet. It be cuddly, it be soft. And it be bloody boiling hot. Much googling later and it seems not so much the tog, rather it is not a breathable one. Who would have thought to ask if a duvet breathes or not? John Lewis here we come. Yep, we’re going all out, to heck with the cost, give us a duvet that breathes.

Photo credit: I am not sure and I apologise but had to use it because it is so darn cute and cheery

NB I do my utmost to use photos flagged for free reuse.

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What the heck is this blog all about?

Should you have fallen onto this blog, the purpose it serves is to ignite my love of writing once more by simply typing whatever is on my mind for 15 minutes and stopping

Fifteen minutes after the weekend and Scroll Free September

Monday morning reflecting on the weekend. It was busy. It was good. There was a lot of fine eating, good wine, and very good company. Started Friday, ended Sunday. Today I woke, smiled and thought, “oh joyfulness, a day to relax.”

THWACK to the forehead, smile collapses to the ground. Nope, I’m working today. The graveyard shift.

Hubster has headed out to help fix a shed roof, leaving me to fling the vacuum around and spray some polish. Done that, now there are a few minutes to ponder the Scroll Free September that is upon us. Must say my feelings are this is a good thing. And that despite my own love of the world wide web and all that goes with it. Jeepers, I waste a huge amount of time on it. Just sort of flaying around and missing out on life. A bit like taking endless photos when you’re away or out and about. Seeing the world through a lens.

It will be hard to not visit WWW completely because so much of life is done there, bookings, accounts etc, but my plan is to not do the really specific social media things, facebook and twitter. I’m 3 days late starting, but here goes.

Hubster is back, walked in and said, “what have you been doing this morning, my darling?”

“Oh really, you didn’t see the house is sparkling clean and your socks and underwear are packed away! What are you, so exhausted you can’t see further than the ends of your eyelashes?!!!!!”

Hubster’s response, as in backtrack, backtrack, backtrack

Time to get ready for work.

 

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photo: Mine, looking into the garden through a little bit of Home in my UK house

 

 

 

 

 

What the heck is this blog about?

Should you have fallen onto this blog, the purpose it serves is to ignite my love of writing once more by simply typing whatever is on my mind for 15 minutes and stopping

 

15 minutes with Radio 2, getting older and the Wombles

Today at work my younger colleague kindly changed her normal radio channel to Radio 2.  The pair of us have been on the early shift this week starting at 6am. And after her morning coffee and my cup of hot water, we settle down and colleague streams her fav channel. The music is pretty much as expected, loud, good beat, sometimes a load of noise and meaningless, sometimes great, but whatever it is, it keeps you going and often I hear myself singing and humming along.  Anyway, a day or so ago, my colleague asked me which channel I listen to. Radio 2, I said. Today then, through no prompting or complaining from me, she streams my channel.

“That’s kind, and thank you very much,” I said. Very touched she would do this.

“I like old music too,” she said.

I laughed good and hard at being advised of my age and said she must change back whenever she wanted. We lasted, probably, about half an hour until the Wombles song came on, at which point she reached for her mouse and said it was time to change.

Can’t say I blame her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fifteen minutes – day trip with the colleagues

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Odney – photo –  mine

Funny how the idea of a work road trip brings up such mixed emotions. Elation at a day out and leaving the desk, and familiar mouse to gather a few hours of dust. Panic – shit, who will I sit with on the bus? I don’t know them all that well. I’m not a great small talker, will I by virtue be bored shitless? Clothes, can we ditch the uniform for civies? How joyous to not wear my Business Dress shirt that likens me to a member of a local ten-pin bowling team. As in too big, in need of darts all over, and how can I forget the official shade of blue.

As it was the bus was OK. All official with its logo. Instructions to buckle up before we drive off, and even stronger instruction for no moonies on the motorway – jeepers who do I work with?! Everybody took up position, rabble in the back, graduating to the quieter ones and our leader up front with the driver.

We were off to the company Heritage Site, about an hour and a half away. Our leader having been there before, relayed how deciding to not leave her doggie at home, booked her into a local doggie day-care – at great expense. Lovely dog was provided with paw massages and facial, and our leader was provided throughout the day photo updates to her mobile of lovely doggie running freely amongst fields and orchards.

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Heritage site – photo mine

Along the road, newly married and about to be married colleagues shared how they were/would be ovulating during respective Honeymoons completely unaware of how their voices were travelling across the bus.  Needless to say, much laughter and blushes when I turned back and said, “Thanks for sharing, Ladies.”

“Members Only,” the signage said at this beautiful place we arrived at.

Heritage site, though small, holds a wealth of information along with an extensive fabric library, items conserved in various methods, physical and digital.  And if you were looking for bedtime reading, they have copies of the company magazine that’s been going for over 100 years and is the longest running in-house magazine – I stand corrected but think our lovely Archivist said in the world.

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Like a little boat trip – photo mine

As you enter there is a memory of the Oxford Street branch, bombed during WW11 – a small tin mangled, chared, with coins melted to the bottom. Very poignant.

We saw print blocks used for fabrics. An example piece called Tree of Life is on the wall. This beauty required over 300 blocks to produce and needed well over 3 years to complete. As you can expect these were pricey items, not for the regular man in the street. Jeepers one of the blocks I could hold was so heavy. Apparently, the printers knew exactly which block to use in sequence. Any mistakes, well the fabric was discarded at huge cost.

The entire place, not only the Heritage Site, for it is on a private members only estate, is idyllic. There are walks along the Thames, footbridges to take you across to further lush and extensive grounds, rowing boats available, accommodation, spa, the lot. You can even take your dog, and indeed we saw a furry friend swimming in the Thames, the ducks oblivious.

Back to the Heritage site, our Archivist – Hannah – was wonderful, sharing great snippets of company founder’s links to the Zoological Society and how after taking on a pair of gibbons to assist with breeding, founder managed to create quite an upset with his local villagers.  Apparently while he believed gibbons do not swim, he’d overlooked how they do wade, and in fact did so, deciding to take a pleasant stroll through the village.

We also saw some items pertaining to Queen Victoria, one being a rather solemn black, bejewelled funeral bonnet. The other was far more romantic. When she was sent a fabric print to agree to for Balmoral, Vicky added the silhouette of herself gazing across the printed forget-me-nots towards a silhouette of Albert. When the example was returned, these were incorporated into the print run, and yes, there they were, feint, but there.

We left in glorious sunshine, all keen to return. Let’s hope we do.

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Time to say farewell – photo mine

 

 

 

Might have cheated here a bit, this was written on the bus and needed a bit more than 15 minutes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fifteen minutes with a cold sore, hangers, goats and cows

goat

(Photo from HERE )

Flipping heck. If there is one thing that really gets my goat going, it’s waking up and finding myself staring at a cold sore. Bad enough though they are, mine always reside beneath or within my nose. Slap bang in the middle of my face. The hubster can’t look me in the eye, preferring to travel towards my poor old nostrils. And if he does this, then everybody else I meet, pass, talk to will be doing the same.

My lovely daughter tells me not to worry and that everybody gets them. I know, but man oh man it does make me a grumpy old cow.

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(My photo)

Fifteen minutes with a cold sore, feels like fifteen months with a cold sore.

Did a sort out of my cupboard recently, chucking out things that I like, but not so much they will be missed. Must admit I can’t ditch a denim shirt that’s not been of the hangar for about 3 years.  Got a jacket or 2 like that too. Need to be brave and chuck them. Motivation, buy something else to put on those empty hangers.

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(Image from HERE )

Flipping heck number 2. The hubster was in the garden with his slippers, stepped in poop and walked it through the house! Suffice to say the air is not good on so many levels

 

 

 

 

 

Purpose of this blog should you have fallen upon it:

Having fallen out of love with writing, yet deep down really wanting to, decided the best way was to write whatever comes to mind in 15 mins and then stop

Fifteen minutes – and it be Sunday with a wild life roundup

I’m not sure why it’s called SUNday, because there is no blooming SUN today! Googled the reason and lost interest when each reference went off into Roman Times and Germanic terms. Evidently, there is no need in my day to be educated.

sun

photo from here: HERE

In the last week or so, I’ve seen a deer, fox and hedgehog. Hedgehog was in the garden outside the back door, and the fox and deer as expected were crossing the road as I headed either to or from work. Whenever there is wildlife about I find myself smiling and cheerful.

hedgehog

Quite fond of a hedgehog we started putting out some mealworms and water, with some success. Hubster erected some make-shift retreats out of old wood, bricks and an old chopping board. All was pretty good, however, we decided to upgrade facilities and today installed a proper hedgehog shelter, allowing us to create a bit of a scamper-way through the beds, round the mancave, into a selection of homes, and then out through the hedgehog highway.  This all sounds as if street planning was needed, and perhaps rather OTT, but no, it’s a simple set up, very basic and rural and with luck will be helpful.

hedge house

Photo from here: HERE

Back to Sunday then. Hubster is going to do some planting and me, well lucky me, I’m off to work. Food is good there, and chances are a roast could be on the cards.

 

 

 

Purpose of this blog should you have fallen upon it:

Having fallen out of love with writing, yet deep down really wanting to, decided the best way was to write whatever comes to mind in 15 mins and then stop

fifteen minutes before I leave for work

30th July 2018 – it be Monday

Writers Block – write anything, just write you dummy

That’s all I have, fifteen minutes to put something down on this blank page. No idea where to start. No idea what to say. How about I think about what work is going to be?

Hmmm, well, it’s a 2pm-10pm shift. Quite a change for me. And that’s an office position too. I never really associated late shifts with office work before. Have you? Office hours have always been 8-4 or 9-5. Where is Dolly Parton when I need her.

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If my mind is correct we have an outdoor meeting between 2 and 3.  Up the road at a pondy sort of place. Is pondy even a word? Who knows, leaving me only to hope the context is correct for this blog.  Of course, the weather is not playing along, after endless and long days of heat and blue sky, so today we return to grey, damp and blegh. Reason for the meeting? Colleague leaving tomorrow. She’s fluent in French, going to Uni in France to study Spanish. Go figure!

Do you know I actively save every kind of flying creature and, crawling ones too? Flies the lot. Shew them out through doors and windows, urging them to “come along, out you go.” Hubster smiles and rolls his eyes, and will take over shewing if I’m dashing out the door.

Ok, that’s it. 15 minutes almost up.

Just enough time to add tags and categories and publish. Feeling content I’ve done it.

One last thing. Not sure who the killer will be on Unforgotten. Loads of red herrings there.