Wednesday, 30 September 2009
Tuesday, 29 September 2009
This morning I had to sit and rest because I was still tired, so I read a book for an hour in the arm chair, then fell asleep. This is very unlike me as I usually have bags of energy. I am wondering if I should carry on donating blood, but my next appointment is not untill March so I have plenty of time to think about it. I might ring them up and ask about it.
This afternoon two men came to wire in the electrics to my new boiler. The timer box is in the airing cupboard above the hot water tank, and the thermostat is on the wall in the hallway. The young man explained how it all works, but I am still going to have to study the instruction booklet, it seems very complicated. I shall be too scared to put it on, after hearing some of the horror stories of the enornous bills that people get. There's no way I am going to pay that much. I shall try and keep my quarterly gas and electric bills down to less than £40 each in the winter, and less than £30 in the summer. I can see I'm going to be testing my will power this winter.
Monday, 28 September 2009
Save all your plastic bags, they come in usefull for cutting the pieces for your design, you can really go to town and personalise it. The more colours you have the better. You can also make up several of these panels and sew them together, it gives you a very strong piece which you can make into a bag.
Sunday, 27 September 2009
Thursday, 24 September 2009
But today I have a Priority E-ticket to go and see Justin Lee Collins hosting a game show called Heads or Tails, on Tuesday 13th October, at the Granada Television Studios in Manchester. I'm really chuffed, it will be interesting to see what goes on behind the cameras, the bit that doesn't get screened.
There are a lot of rules and regulations to keep to, I won't be able to take photo's, and I have to wear something colourful. It says the audience is a very important part of the show, we have to come ready to enjoy our visit, but we have got help them to facilitate this by following the directions and instructions that the staff may give us. Does that mean we have to leap up and down clapping like demented seals at feeding time, when instructed to do so? When I have occasionally caught bits of these game show type programmes I always wondered what the audience have been taking to cause such hysteria, now I shall find out. I will report my experiences on here.
Wednesday, 23 September 2009
Tuesday, 22 September 2009
I still have some potatoes left, a few carrots and onions, four cabbages, and a few spriggs of broccoli, but the beans are all finished, and so are the courgettes. It's time for the Autumn tidy up to start I think. I don't relish the job of pulling the dead plants up and stacking them on the compost heap, but it has to be done.
My tomatoes have been a long time coming but now I have them in abundance, I am eating several every day. There are a lot of green ones which will never ripen, so I'll be cutting them up, cooking them for a few minutes, and freezing them in margarine tubs. These will be handy for adding to my winter stews. I know most people make chutney but I don't like it. I've still got some huge cucumbers which are a great accompaniment for my cheese sandwiches.
With a bit of luck I should be getting some brussel sprouts as the plants look strong and healthy underneath the net curtain covers. That definately did the trick with keeping the dreaded butterflies from laying their eggs all over them.
I am not looking forward to the nights drawing in and limiting my time outdoors, the seasons seem to go by so fast.
Monday, 21 September 2009
Saturday, 19 September 2009
I set off at 10.50am and walked for three hours then stopped at South Ferriby for a rest and a bite to eat, my feet were already getting a bit sore then, I had done 8 miles. After changing my socks, I decided to get the bus to Barton, what a relief to sit down.
There were some very interesting people to chat to at the gallery, fascinating to watch them at work. Artists painting, a young lady was weaving with a very complicated looking loom, a graphic artist was designing the cover for a book, and people were happy to explain how they made their designs. I was so busy talking I didn't notice the time, and as the sun was still shining I thought it would be a good idea to make the most of it and start walking back along the side of the river. I walked the five miles to South Ferriby, and found there was a bus due in ten minutes so I sat on the bench and waited fot it. The trouble was, it didn't go into my village so I had to get off and walk the last two miles home, it was getting dark by now and to walk on a road without a footpath is a little bit crazy, I had to keep jumping onto the grass verge as yet another hothead sped by me.
The last half hour was a real struggle, I wanted to collapse in a heap, then I saw the lights of my village, so head down and go for it, I got home at 8pm. I still try and walk the same distances now as I did thirty years ago, well there's no harm in setting goals is there. My poor feet feel like they are on fire, hardly surprising after 15 miles.
Friday, 18 September 2009
As I laid there I felt a bit guilty, it was an awful lot of water, seemed such a waste on one person. And to send it all down the plug hole when I had finished, oh dear, should I save it for flushing the toilet or watering the garden? Maybe not this time as it's getting late, but perhaps I could bath in the daytime and scoop it out with a bucket.
It seems strange turning a tap on and getting hot water. When I washed my dishes earlier, the first thing I did was to boil the kettle, then it dawned on me, old habits die hard. I'm not sure I like the idea of heating a whole tank full of water when you only need a bit in a bucket or bowl. Seems daft to store hot water, for it only to cool down and heat up again, and again, and again.
Now I've got this white box on my kitchen wall, saying 'Look at me, I'm going to cost you a lot of money.' I think I might switch it off, and carry on boiling the kettle to wash the dishes. And why soak your whole body when you only want to soak your feet? I wonder if I should switch the water on once a month to have a bath, and go back to the old way of washing bits of me in the kitchen sink.
All these decisions I have to make now, it was much simpler when nothing worked, no heating no hot water. Now I have to decide how cold I need to be before I put the central heating on. How much money do I want to spend, is this goodbye to my very cheap bills, will I be crying every three months when that dreaded British Gas envelope drops onto the door mat. I don't think I can cope with all this, I think I'll move into a cave.
Thursday, 17 September 2009
The lady on the phone said they would be here at 8.30, they arrived at 9.45, but I mustn't grumble. After closer inspection of suitable places to position said boiler, it was decided to ignore the first inspectors report which recomended it go in the airing cupboard in my bedroom. The kitchen wall which is an outside wall was a far better choice, logical I thought.
Once the plan had been established they set to work, moving furniture, taking carpets up, pulling floorboards up, removing the gas fire in the front room and sealing off the back boiler behind it, then replacing the fire. When I cleaned up afterwards I noticed that the carpet was wet, someone obviously hadn't been very carefull, but mustn't grumble.
My three cats made a hasty exit when the deafening noise of the drilling started, there was dust everywhere, but mustn't grumble. The hot water tank was too big to fit in the space in the airing cupboard where the old one had come out, so at this point they stopped work to make a phone call to order another one for tomorrow. Another error by the first inspector, I can't remember seeing him measure it up, but mustn't grumble.
So tomorrow they will be back to finish the job. They plan on power flushing the radiators out, that sounds fun, lots of swishing water.
Wednesday, 16 September 2009
I got to the Youth Hostel at Haworth at 5pm.
You meet some very interesting people at Youth Hostels. I was there four nights, and one of my room mates was a lady in her sixties who was walking from Edinburgh to Manchester. Another was a young lady from Tiawan, on her way to Newcastle University to start her course. Then there was the couple from New Zealand who were touring the UK for five weeks, their daughter, who now lives in the UK was also staying there with her friends. Another lady I got chatting to was in her seventies and goes hosteling regularly, she loves it.
I sat in the lounge on the Friday night, studying my maps and working out which footpaths I was going to follow, and got chatting to a friendly chappie. After an hour we were getting on great, so he asked me if he could come along on my walk the next day. I said yes, nice to have some company.
It was a fantastic day, we ambled through Haworth main street, had a look at the church then set off. I did the map reading and oh dear, we got lost a couple of times. We had a bit of everything, tramping through fields, sloshing through boggy moors, scrambling up steep banks, climbing rocks, and marching along the road. I couldn't resist stopping at a lovely country pub and partaking of a half pint of Theakston's Old Peculiar, my favourite ale. We had such a laugh. The highlight was when we sat on a big rock on the top of Penistone Country Park, it had fantastic views. Suddenly overhead we looked up to see the Red Arrows passing, what a bonus.
On the way back I needed to dive behind a bush, as you do, so my friend walked on. I noticed a lot of scraps of paper strewn about and saw that there was a letter and some membership cards. I was just thinking that some people are so inconsiderate littering the place up, when I noticed a handbag with most of it's contents still inside. I was shocked and wondered what had happened to the woman who owned it. I picked all the bits up and found a wallet with bank cards in it, and two cheque books. My friend came looking for me as I had been gone a long time. We decided to take it straight to the police station, but found it was locked, so I used the phone on the wall to talk to someone. It transpired that the bag had been reported stolen from a car, they said they would contact the owner and she would ring me to arrange to pick it up. I got a phone call half an hour later, the police said the lady was about to go on holiday and a police officer would collect it the following morning. I was relieved to hear that she hadn't been attacked, and pleased she was going to get her bag back, even though she had probably lost some cash and had cancelled her credit cards. Here are some pictures from our day out.
My walking friend, Lester.
The main street in Haworth. The steep cobbled street is lined with flower boxes at the front of each house.
We had a look at Haworth Railway Station. We don't have time to travel on a train today.
Haworth Church at the top of the main street. the Bronte's are buried in a vault inside the church, except for Anne who was buried at Scarborough.
The Red Arrows have just flown over the top of Penistone Nature Park.
On the Sunday I went back to Saltaire and picked up a free directory of all the houses which were open to the public. It's a bit like the Open Gardens idea when people invite everyone to come and have a look round, only this is to come in and view what crafty things they have made, or pictures they have painted. It seemed very cheeky to step into people's front rooms and have a nose around, but they were all very friendly and keen to talk about their craft projects.
I had a look round the huge Mill built in 1851 by Sir Titus Salt, it stands near the the River Aire, hence the name Saltaire. He also built all the houses nearby for his workers, and the church, and nearby Roberts Park. The whole project took 25 years to build. The Mill now houses art galleries, shops, and restaurants, many of David Hockney's works are displayed there. I hadn't taken much notice of his creations before, but now I am well and truly hooked, the man is a genious.
The former Congregational Church built by Sir Titus Salt. Typical narrow cobbled streets.
Later in the afternoon I had a walk to the Shipley Glen Tramway, but unfortunately it was closed, so I carried on further up onto Baildon Moor, I just love spectacular views.
Thursday, 10 September 2009
I started off with how I started the Lady Truckers Club, the events I organised for them, my radio and television appearances, the three times I went to the Women of the Year Luncheon at the Savoy Hotel and met royalty, and the publicity shots I did in France with Sir Alistair Morton in the dining car of the euro tunnel train.
Then I went on to talk about my appearance in Hunt for the Tightest Person in Britain on Channel four in January. I took along some of my bags to show them, and read out my list of money saving tips. I'm sure most of them didn't believe me when I said I put my widdle on my compost heap, and one woman said 'you don't really cook a meal in a saucepan and eat it out of there as well, do you.' Yep, I answered, 'why mess up a plate as well, it just makes more washing up, and I hate washing up.'
The whole night was hilarious, someone asked me where I come from because I sounded just like Pam Ayres without the poetry. I just tell it like it is, open my mouth and surprise myself sometimes with what comes out.
Anyway, I've got to get a few things together now, because I'm off to Yorkshire in the morning. I'm having a frugal holiday. I have booked myself into the Youth Hostel for four nights, at Howarth, near Bradford, Bronte country I believe. It's a Victorian Mansion, here is the link
Very reasonably priced as well, I have a bed in a dormitory and I shall be getting my own food. I am looking forward to exploring new territory, looks like there is a lot to see in the area, with some great walking. I'll catch up with you when I get back, hopefully with some great photo's.
Wednesday, 9 September 2009
Tuesday, 8 September 2009
Monday, 7 September 2009
In the meantime, as I have a lot of time to spare, I have been making some more bags, can't wait to tell you about them and show you the piccies. So don't give up on me, I'll be back as soon as I can.
See you later, off to get the bus back, on my free pass of course.