Wednesday, 31 August 2022


Good evening. It's been a lovely sunny day today, so I took the opportunity to go out. I did a short walk in a place I haven't been to for a while. Here is a taster of what I saw.  It's too late to do a post tonight so I'll get onto it tomorrow. 
Don't forget, it's check in day for the International Walking Group tomorrow, so there will be a separate post for that. 
We'll catch up soon. Toodle pip.   ilona

Tuesday, 30 August 2022

Survival tip - change your eating habits.

Cutting corners on your food budget is not as daunting as it sounds. If you are prepared to make some changes to your eating habits you can knock £'s off your shopping bills. All it needs are a few tweaks here and there. Change from Brands to supermarkets own name foods. Cut down on cooking time. Keep meals simple and basic. Eat everything you buy, no waste. Check the dates of the food stored in your fridge, freezer, and cupboards. Have a look at this video. A stew made with potatoes, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, courgettes, and noodles. Packet sauce mix and seasoning to taste. Three meals for less than £5. 

The possibilities are endless with this type of meal. Any combination of ingredients you have in the cupboard or fridge can be turned into a wholesome stew. Give it a try and make up your own recipes. 
Thanks for popping in. Toodle pip.   ilona

Monday, 29 August 2022

Cash or Card. (edited)

 Cash is being phased out over the next five years. I don't think people realise exactly what that means to have no cash at all. All transactions will go through a bank account. Banks are closing branches. Everything will be online. Small businesses will have to be geared up to accept cards. Those that do not will go out of business. That is what the Government wants to happen. Crush small businesses, move everything over to internet shopping, get things delivered. 

What about those who are not on the internet. How do they pay the person who comes to clean their house, or tend to their garden. How do mums pay for babysitters when they need to go out. How can you give kids pocket money to spend on sweeties in the local shop. There are still a thousand ways where paying with cash is preferable. 

The alternative is bartering. Skill swap. I will dig your garden if you will pick my kids up from school. I will do your washing if you take my dog for a walk. An hourly rate for swapping skills could be established which would be beneficial to both parties. 

When cash ceases to exist, everyone will be at the mercy of those who are rich. They will call the shots. They will decide what you can spend your digital currency on. They will block any transactions which they deem to be unnecessary, for whatever reason. 

"We have five to 10 years to fix digital payments before cash becomes unworkable, and need to start planning how to get the new system working for all."

"Millions of older people rely on cash for everyday spending and to pay carers, cleaners and those who shop on their behalf, and many others need cash for other reasons - for example, local traders, for whom cash is often core to their operation.

Yet just last month the Post Office handled over £800million in personal cash withdrawals, the most since records began five years ago.

Article in the Daily Express. 

To stop this landslide you may wish to consider changing your spending habits. If you don't use cash, it will disappear. 

Catch ya later. Enjoy your Bank Holiday Monday.  ilona


To all those who find it amusing that I don't do internet banking and I try and pay for as much as I can with cash, plus those who are happy to pay with a card or phone, here's a horror story for you. Charlotte Morgan had all her belongings stolen from her locker in a gym she is a member of. She recalls in detail the chain of events which resulted in her losing over £5000. They hacked into her account and went on a spending spree. She is now embroiled in a dispute with her bank, Santander, who refuses to accept that their system is at fault. Read about the chain of events since the theft, and how she is coping with it. Cyber crime is happening all the time. Criminals are using sophisticated equipment to rob their victims. Be vigilant.  

Sunday, 28 August 2022


With a belly full of chicken this is where Mayze can be found in the mornings. Her favourite sunspot, on the table on a soft cushion. Fully recovered from her nasty cold. She is a sweetheart. 
Have a lovely Sunday. Toodle pip.  ilona

Saturday, 27 August 2022

A local walk

A walk in the sunshine yesterday. I see that Trevor has been tidying up Angie's bench. He has filled the planters with white flowers, put fresh flowers in the vases, filled up the water containers for the dog bowl, and put some peanuts in the bird feeder. All looks very nice. 
The hens are seeking some shade and having a dust bath. 

This cottage always has flowers in the front garden. 

A stack of hay has been burnt to the ground. I wonder how that happened. 

Today I went to Go Outdoors I needed some maps for a future trip. I wanted to buy some gas cylinders for my camping cooker, but they were sold out. I think people are buying these cookers to use in the home, in case the mains gas gets cut off. 
It's been super warm today, I had to delay Billy's walk until 6.30pm, when it had cooled down a bit. 
Cheerio for now. Enjoy your Sunday.  ilona

Dick Emery Bank Holidays

Saturday Fun Day. It's a Bank Holiday weekend. Get yourself a coffee and don't spit it out while you watch this. Dick Emery, comedy genius. 
They don't make 'em like this any more. 
Catch ya later.  ilona

Friday, 26 August 2022

Seven Bridges walk at Studley Park

Sunday morning and I was keen to get in a decent walk before I went home. A cheese sandwich and a coffee was quickly consumed and I set off from the car park with some snacks in my bag. I followed the B6265 out of the city, and took a footpath on the left to Studley Roger. 
It's a pretty village, and this garden intrigued me. It was full of artworks made from junk. Some of it hidden by the foliage. I like the way they have stripped the lower branches from the trees, presumably to give the smaller plants room to survive, and let some light into the house. I stood for a few minutes searching for the quirky junk art.  
At the end of the village is a gate to a long driveway, the back entrance to Studley Deer Park. A long tarmac drive takes you through the archway into the park. Free entry to walkers, bikers, cyclists, and cars. 

This is the Choristers House close to St Mary's Church. 

I followed the signs for Visitor Centre and Fountains Abbey. There is a courtyard with a shop, toilets, restaurant, and the reception area to pay for a ticket if you want to visit the Abbey and Water Gardens. Here are the prices. I decided not to go in because I didn't want to spend all day there. How do you fancy a table and two chairs, for £270. A bit pricey. 
I had a walk around the lake. It was a lovely day. 
There is a tea room where you can sit outside. I always take my own drink with me.
A herd of deer appeared .
Have a look around the lake area. 
Off I went in search of the seven bridges. 
The first one is a wooden bridge. This is where the water runs away from the lake. 
This looks like a nice walk. 

No more water, the bed is dry.

Time to head back to Ripon to the car. This is where it got tricky, which way to go. A bit of guesswork was needed, follow my nose and hope for the best. I came across a couple coming in the opposite direction and they pointed out which turning I should take. I could see the Cathedral in the distance, going the right way then. 
After a bite to eat I said goodbye to Ripon. Back home for 6pm. Another great trip. Where to next?
Today I did an extended local walk. The eight miles has taken me to the end of the month target of 666. How is your walking going? Check in day is Thursday next week. 
Thanks for popping in. We'll catch up soon. Toodle pip.   ilona

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Rocking it at Brimham

Good morning. And still I press on with the photo's from the weekend. I chose a more scenic route out of Pateley Bridge to go back to the car at Brimham Rocks. Up the hill, take the road for a short distance, then off on a track to the left. Heading for Knott Side, Blazefield, The Raikes, Cliff Top, and White Houses. A good choice, some lovely views. 
So far up the track is a viewing point. There is a big rock which has been made safe to stand on by adding a railing around it. 

I stood for a few minutes admiring the views when my peaceful haven was disturbed by chattering voices. Several senior men on a group ramble had stopped to take photo's. That was a surprise, I wasn't expecting that. We exchanged banter and I left them to it. 

There are a lot of footpaths around that area, it's quite confusing. I hoped I was going in the right direction for Brimham Rocks. At one point I wasn't sure where I was, and when I came to a junction it was a guess as to which path I should take. Time was getting on and I didn't want to be out late. I came to a farmhouse and knocked on the door. A young lady came to the door, and said, follow that track and it will take you to the car park at The Rocks. That was a relief. I came to some rock piles and thought I was there. 

Then I came across a couple of climbers, and I took some photo's. The man at the bottom holding the rope said there are a lot more than this, and pointed to where I would find them. I got back on the track and continued walking in the direction he suggested. 

YEAH, I found them at last. The Rocks are over a massive area, a lot of it hidden by trees. When I arrived in the morning everyone was heading out of the car park and following the signs to go and see them. I was glad I didn't do that, and went a long walk instead. When I got back to the car park it was nearly empty. It was the right decision to view the Rocks later in the day when most people had left. 

I must say, they are are impressive and well worth a visit. 
Maps available at the Information Centre, with a big map on a board on the wall outside when they are closed. Go to their web site to find more information. 

I was back at the car at 7pm, had a bite to eat, then drove back to Ripon arriving at 8pm for a second night there. What a great day that was. Checking the mileage on Bikehike I walked nine miles. I was ready for my bed. 
I made a plan for Sunday. The car can stay here while I go for another walkabout. More pics about that to come on the next post. 
Thanks for popping in. Toodle pip.   ilona

Wednesday, 24 August 2022

Let's go to Pateley Bridge

Saturday morning saw me up bright and early. The weather looked promising. Water heating for a coffee, and an egg custard to go with it. See to my ablutions in the public toilets which were open. It's not easy to brush ones teeth when the sink is a metal structure set into the wall, and automatically dispenses soap, hot water, and hot air. Wet flannel taken into a cubicle to wipe one's nether regions. I managed. 
Then I was ready to move. The plan was to drive to Brimham Rocks, some seven miles away, and have a look at that, then go for a longer walk. I arrived at the car park and was studying the pay machine. A lady came up and got herself a ticket with her plastic NT card. I was reading the instructions, said I was studying the prices and would I be able to pay with cash. Straight away she said I have two cards, I can get your ticket. Oh wow, I was beaming from ear to ear, what a kind thing to do. She saved me £9, the lovely lady. 
I had decided that I wanted to walk to Pateley Bridge, and could view the Rocks when I came back to the car. There are lots of paths coming out of that car park, it's very confusing. I soldiered on, went round in a circle, before I got going on the right path. 
The countryside is very beautiful in those parts, the scenery is quite spectacular. I always have the camera ready to whip out. 

After a trek along a very rocky path, I came across a cottage and the lady of the house was pottering in the garage. I stopped to chat, she was very friendly, I liked her. A good half an hour later we said cheerio and I was on my way. I followed her directions to the river, and all I had to do was follow that to Pateley Bridge. 

A stile with a dog flap. Pull the string which lifts the flap so the dog can walk through it. Saves having to lift a dog over it. 
You never know when you might get a surprise view. A mystery house. Always have the camera ready. 

At last I arrived in Pately. It was rather busy with tourists, walkers, cyclists, and bikers. A popular place at the weekend. Look at this cute garden decorated with lots of small ornaments and toys. They call it make a wish, and there was a plaque saying how much they have raised so far for charity. 
The main street in Pateley.

I walked up the hill to look at a church. Lovely views. 

At the top, a church with most of the front covered in corrugated sheeting. It looks a mess, but I'm sure it will look better once the renovations are finished. I heard music coming from the open door. 
A lady is playing the organ. I didn't stop to chat. Time was getting on and I still had a lot more walking to do. 

After a Magnum ice cream treat I went on my way, heading back to the car by a different route. I wonder if I can get lost again. 

More scenery pics on the next post. Thanks for popping in. Toodle pip.   ilona