Sunday, 26 June 2016

Hurrying towards the end of June

Moving on swiftly from yesterdays slightly maudlin post.

This is all the other stuff that's been going on here......................

My Wednesday post had a list of things to finish and I'm pleased to say the owl cross stitch and the watering can have both been turned into cards. The puzzle is gradually being pieced together but the book pile is only going down slowly and the lavender bags are still waiting

  A small silver 9 year old Fiesta has entered our life.
 We've been a one car family for several years, ever since the County Council stopped paying a car allowance and forced Col to use a hired works van for bridge inspections - (How hiring a van was cheaper than paying a mileage allowance I have no idea).
Several times in our married life we've  had long periods of only owning one car, simply because we couldn't afford to run two cars. While Col used the car for work I would use my bike, local bus or we would only go shopping at weekends. We've had spells with two cars - usually two very old cars, especially after we moved to Knodishall when we were miles from everything. Now the Hyundai we bought in February 2015 as a replacement for the gas-guzzling Jeep Cherokee, needs a new clutch - the 9 roundabouts, 3 sets of traffic lights and a dozen other stop-starts between here and hospital have worn it out! It really ought to be swapped for something smaller and more economical for town life except that when Col is better and we get around to towing the caravan to all the places on my long list we will need it again.
Hence the Fiesta, I would have liked bright red or blue but Hey Ho! Just got to get used to all the differences between the Tuscan and the Fiesta now and I'd only just got the hang of the Tuscon after the Jeep.

I've  finished another Angela Thirkell book - Northbridge Rectory - it's my favourite so far. This is the new reprint by Virago Modern Classics of the 1941 book, the 10th in her Barsetshire series which were written between 1933 and 1962. I probably wouldn't have enjoyed them before the age I am now - are younger people reading them? So many of the people she created I can recognise from the village I went to school in during the 1950s. I remember elderly spinsters living with even more elderly fathers, sisters eeking out a living by sharing a house, cooks and cleaners and huge families and slightly strange, scholarly, old men. They all appear in the world she created. Each book is a story in it's own right but often mentioning people in previous books.
 Northbridge Rectory mainly revolves around Mrs Villars, the rectors wife and how she and the rest of the village deal with the 8 members of the Barsetshire regiment who have been billeted at the rectory. There is parachute spotting from the roof of the church, bird-watching ( Thirkell invents wonderful names for birds to save her having to research details of real ones -I think!), genteel tea parties. Nieces partying with the soldiers and the awful wife of the Major.All great fun.
VMC are reprinting 3 more  in November but Why oh why have they only done  the 9th -"Cheerfulness Breaks in" - in an e book edition? They've "forced" me to buy an old copy - damn that one-click Amazon ordering thing!

Yesterday I went here



 to listen to this

And very good it was too. Col said he would come too and go down to the beach hut while I was at the talk to check everything was OK, then after picking me up we collected fish and chips and went back to the beach hut for an hour of sea air. We were very excited to spot a seal, at least we supposed that was what it was - one minute what looked like a seals nose popped up and then after a couple of minutes vanished.

We have met our probable-soon-to-be new neighbours. Our previous neighbour has gone into a sheltered housing flat not far away. He is 85 and a nice old boy but had been on his own since his sister died a few years ago. The new people are a couple a bit older than us moving here from the other side of Ipswich to be nearer their daughter and because this is a nice quiet road.  So hopefully  no noisy parties!

We voted - 'nough said on that!

And I actually watched a bit of women's tennis from Eastbourne, it's got more interesting now we have a British lady doing well otherwise I can't seem to work out who's who - except for the Williams sisters who always look so fed -up when playing.

Later today- weather permitting - I'm walking to the library - with camera. I promised photos of Ipswich and so far you've only had the view over the town from the top of the next road!

Tomorrow is the start of two weeks of tennis - Yay! and I believe there is a football match too. Come on England! England!

Many thanks for all the words of support and prayers, I think positive thoughts from so many people is sure to help.

Back Soon
Sue

24 comments:

  1. So pleased to 'hear' you sounding a little more cheery this morning!
    I so envy you your beach hut, although we're right on the coast the nearest beach huts to us are 65 miles away, so a tad prohibitive!
    I too love Angela Thirkell books, but know I wouldn't have enjoyed them in my younger days.
    All the best to you both.

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    1. The beach hut is such a treat - one benefit of the drastic downsizing is a bit of spare cash!

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  2. I am another Angela Thirkell fan and after many years of searching in second hand books shops have got her entire output. I love the social attitudes so keenly observed. I'm so glad they are coming back into print. I have a spare copy of "Growing Up". If you let me have an address I'll send it to you.

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    1. They make me smile. Thank you for the book offer if you email me at colinorsue@hotmail.com I can reply with address

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  3. Wishing you a nice, relaxing day!!

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    1. Thank you it was quiet and I went for a good walk

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  4. I feel totally stupid, Sue ... Earlier this morning I put your blog into the computer search engine, as you do, and up came the one from 2014 (although I didn't know it then, as I'd not checked the date) about the perils of living in the country! And so, as is my wont, I gave a long, rambling response .. and then, on returning home from visiting our younger son and his partner, a little while ago, I logged on again to see if there had been any further responses and couldn't find the your post about the countryside. So I looked down the list on the right and found Country Living and sure enough, there was the post! How that came up this morning I haven't the foggiest!

    We have only ever had one car which we shared. I was fortunate, in a way, that my husband worked only 2 miles from where we live and he started work at 8.18 am each day, so I could take him to work before the boys were due at primary school, and then of course, they took the bus to secondary school, and then I had the car to get myself to work. I finished at 2.30pm (I only ever worked part-time after we had children), was at home for the boys' return from school and then they came with me - until they were old enough to be left on their own - when we collected my husband from work at 5 pm. It all slotted in nicely although, of course, some days I felt I was in and out of the car all day long! And when he had to go on business abroad, I had the car for myself without all the ferrying about. Nowadays, even if people technically could do what I did, just getting up a bit earlier to do this kind of journey, they all seem to want their own set of wheels. We have neighbours where there are two or more adult children and they all have their own cars, one family has had up to five vehicles parked outside and most have two or three. Our Close of 18 houses is like a used-car lot which makes a complete mockery of the Deeds (or whatever they're called now) which says that there is no parking on the road! But they were drawn up more than 30 years ago when cars (and people!) weren't as large, and each property has a garage and a drive, so there was then absolutely no need to park on the road. This is no longer the case. Most cars are huge and, we have found, the larger the cars become, so the people in them. Hope the Fiesta serves you well! If I had my own little runaround I think I'd opt for a Fiat 500! But Devon's hills would soon b*gger up the gear box, I fear! We still have a 16 year old Mitsubishi Galant (bought it when it was a year old with a genuine 900 miles on the clock) but it's a 6 cylinder model and makes light work of the hills and is still in pretty good nick for a car of its age.
    I tried Angela Thirkell but couldn't get on with her books. Current reading, Marcia Willett's latest novel, The Songbird, which is set in and around nearby Totnes.
    Margaret P

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    1. This bungalow and garage were built in the '40s - only a teeny car could get through the gap to the garage.
      I've only read 1 Marcia Willet - and didn't enjoy it so haven't bothered again.

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    2. Just looked in my book of books and see I've actually read 2 - Hatties Mill and The Dipper

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  5. Just catching up Sue. Pleased to hear that things are all set for the next stage of Col's treatment; I really admire your attitude to all that life has thrown at you.
    A little grey car entered our life on Friday, after 27 months of being a carfree family. Circumstances change and we have had to change with them. Driving again after that length of time felt strange indeed when I did it for the first time yesterday, but I've driven twice today and I feel comfortable now.

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    1. What a weird coincidence. I hope I get used to the Fiesta soon, the indicator is on the Wrong side!

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    2. Sue, our indicator is on the Wrong side (compared with our previous car, an Opel Manta coupe) and sometimes we put on the windscreen wipers still instead of the indicator! We've had our current car 16 years and we still revert to how the previous car was set up!
      Margaret P

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    3. We have 2 cars, a smaller 'work'car and the big family caravan towing 4x4. They are opposite set up and I swap cars several tines a week: I wipe my windows round lots of corners! I also have a twitchy left foot in the auto, as the other is manual... feel like a silent comedy actress some days and can imagine a laurel and hardy type theme song in my head.

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  6. We have been a two car household since I passed my test, just 26 years ago, at the moment we still need two cars there is no public transport around here at all and although I love cycling I can see me getting up the mountain with a bike, perhaps when Martin is here full time we may drop down to one car, we both drive 4x4's dont know yet that is another year way.

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    1. I tried biking in Wales once HaHaHa - got nowhere fast!

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  7. Love Angela Thirkell's books! Haven't read them all, so must put some on my to-read list!

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    1. I'm enjoying them a lot and glad they are being reprinted because I once had an old penguin 1940s copy - impossible to read with such small print

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  8. Adding prayers for both of you as you battle the next stage in fighting Colin's illness.

    Exciting that you now have a second car. I think you will enjoy the ease of getting about and parking.

    What a lovely day in Felixstowe - I am envious of "we collected fish and chips and went back to the beach hut for an hour of sea air" nothing like it is there?

    All the best.

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    1. I hate having two cars but, as with the house move to this bungalow, things will change when Colin is better. Felixstowe was grey and gloomy and on the way home it absolutely poured with rain. Not summer weather that's for sure

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  9. I used to live across the fields from Addenbrookes(in fact I worked there for a while). I am still attending the cardiac clinic on a regular basis. (the food on the wards is awful so please keep him supplied with cook home cooked treats. The park and ride at Trumpington used to have a bus to the hospital which ran about every 20 mins. Also I think if you have cancer you get special concessions on the parking. Please check with the hospital. I hope all is well with Col and I wish him every success with the treatment.

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    1. He will only be in addenbrookes as an outpatient on two days so should survive the food!!

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  10. Because of your recommendation - I'm not very adventurous in my reading - I thought I would look up Angela Thirkell on my kindle. We have a house filled with books; but because I'm now visually impaired I use the kindle so I can enlarge the print.

    Bit shocked at Kindle price though! Generally download cheap or free. Made a mistake a week ago as I downloaded 'Evacuation from London' thinking it related to WW2 - but it was about zombies.

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    1. A book on zombies would be a bit of a shock to me too!
      Angela Thirkell are not everyones cup of tea.

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  11. We're a two car family out of absolute necessity, I would never risk cycling on these up and downhill bendy, busy roads. We have a Mitsubishi for all the big jobs, towing duties and for LH to get to work in and mine's a little Fiat 500, I love it .. and it's surprising what I can fit into it ... 3 dogs for a start!!

    I'm looking forward to seeing some more photos of your new town, don't forget to take your camera out :-)

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