XMAS FRIDAY + 1

Well hope you are all recovering well from Xmas. Hope you all enjoyed it as much or as little you wanted to. I’m really aware of the heightened feelings around this time. It is a time to enjoy with the people you love but it is also a time to remember those that aren’t with us ! I,m well aware of the unhappiness that can bring but you must believe that those not with us would want us to be happy. Life is ongoing and must be lived for the day, who knows what will happen tomorrow. Life is for our children and i was reminded this year how true this is. I enjoyed it so much more as I have a very young grand daughter now. The period before cynicism sets in is wonderful. Unfortunately Xmas has become more and more materialistic. I,m sorry to start off on such a low note. I just feel for the less fortunate at this time of year.

Anyway a lot of the country is now suffering bad weather. Snow and ice and low temperatures. You will be pleased to know the beach has been cold (sub zero) but we have had no snow yet! Everybody who has a dog has been walking it on my beach in the last few days. There have been packs of hand bag dogs all dressed in coats they got for xmas. The hardier brigade like mine are still swimming even though the water is down to about 5/6 degrees. To be fair there has also been humans in the water in their Xmas Day and Boxing Day traditional dips. I’m afraid you won’t be getting me to volunteer. It is a time of year you can’t recognise whether people on the beach are men or women, they all look the same in hats scarves anoraks and boots. You can however still recognise their dogs.

There hasn’t been a great deal of local news this week. That becomes apparent when a headline in the Newcastle Sunday paper states “Ferret dies in arson at allotment”. Wonder if it will make the national news?

Interesting facts you might not know are lizards can’t breathe and walk at the same time and people are more likely to co-operate with you if you give them something warm to hold. Now there’s something for the imagination!!!!!

Back to the north East of England and famous people from here. George and Robert Stephenson who invented the first locomotive and build the world’s first railways. Joseph Swan who invented the light bulb and his mate Lord Armstrong, engineer and inventor who lit the first domestic house with those bulbs using hydro power. Lord Collingwood who was Lord Nelsons assistant at Trafalgar and who won the battle after Nelson popped his clogs. Earl Grey who was a British Prime Minister and who had the tea named after him. Thos. Bewick wild life illustrator and the two Scotts, Ridley and Tony, film directors. Jeremiah Dixon, famous for being 50% of the Mason- Dixon line. And many many more

Enough for 2014. my next blog will be in monumentous 2015. Have a good one and will see you on the other side.

This weeks poem is attached as usual        HOMECOMING

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THE FRIDAY BEFORE XMAS

Hope you,ve all done your Xmas preparations and are ready for the annual bun fight. It has not been a good week in Pakistan or Australia and we should be thinking of those worse off anywhere in the world no matter what religion !

The weather on the beach has been, warm, cold, warm, and windy and cold . All very strange for December but gratefully received. It is the shortest day of the week this week and then starts to get lighter every day. It is lack of daylight more than bad weather I find depressing. Bad weather you just wear appropriate clothing. Bruce and I still go out as usual. Having been collecting washed up bits of glass this week. It’s amazing how much is washed up.

This weeks incorrect fact is that you can see the Great Wall of China from the Moon. Wrong!!!! You cant even see it from half way. So you can’t see any man made object from the moon. So there.

For you older people read on, but younger please close your eyes.

Being an oldster can be good. You receive a state pension and probably a pension from your employer. You receive £200 for fuel allowance, mine usually went towards my ski-ing holiday and a £10 gift voucher for Xmas. Bus travel is free and it is also almost free on the Metro system, which is the underground system on Tyneside and Newcastle. You are also entitled to cheaper prices for the cinema and I pay 20% less for my football season ticket. These then are all the material advantages but the biggest bonus of all is the young people think we are ALL doo lally (I think thats how you spell it) We actually aren’t but dont tell them that. We just pretend to forget things or do really silly things. Its like a 2nd childhood we can get away with murder when we really try. I know altzeimers and dementia are awful but we haven’t all got have we? So you oldsters just keep mum and we can keep getting away with all sorts of mischief. ( if my daughter every reads what I write I’m in real trouble)

Back to the North East from last week. Famous musician from Tyneside are Sting, Mark Knofler of Dire Straits, Bryan Ferry Brian Johnson singer of Ac/Dc, Neil Tennant 50% of Pet Shop Boys, the Animals and Lindisfarne (Lindisfarne or Holy Island is an island off the Northumbrian coast) Painters who painted in the area were Turner and LS Lowry. I said last week the dialect is quite different to other parts of the country means we have many different words. Some of these are dunsh (crash), plodge (wade), cowpe (fall over),hoy (throw} , hinny (friend), tippy tappy (walk) boolin (walkin) canny (good) neuk(sheltered place), stottie (type of bread) ra (road)  Theses are just a few “Geordie” words.
Finally things have improved somewhat from last week, my daughter is better, boiler is fixed, vacuum cleaner is now sucking so strongly i have to keep it away from small children and animals. Dog did get better but I’m now on my way to collect him from vets as he has done something to his tail.
Have a wonderful Xmas without stress and find what should be an amusing poem attached.Vintage Model
 

THE DAY BEFORE SATURDAY, AGAIN

I’m here again blogging away as if I’d done it all my life instead of a few weeks. I have picked up several waifs and strays as followers so we are nearly a football team now. Thanks for being there.

Well this week has been a funny week on and off the beach. Weather apart from today has been cold, wet and windy. Just the way Bruce and I like it . Not many other dogs or people. It is OUR beach and we dont like fair weather people who walk dogs and we certainly dont like dogs that wear coats. They should stay in their handbags! Labradors and Spaniels are still swimming even though it is freezing. There are some exceptions to dogs wearing coats, old dogs and greyhound or whippets ( who look cold in the middle of summer)  Bruce has been ill this week , it’s his own fault he was eating seaweed. Other dogs eat it and seem to be fine but he copies them and is sick everytime. Stupid boy!

Off the beach has not been good, my boiler is leaking, my daughter has been ill and my vacuum cleaner has decided not to suck. And for those of you who know anything about poetry my creative writing class tutor said my latest poem about 20 lines long may have been better as a haiku!!! What a cheek.

I dont have any gripes this week, could easily make some up but cant be bothered.

Some of you who like football may have noticed the two football teams I mentioned last week, Blyth Spartans and Newcastle both had good wins. So there have been some good things this week.

Xmas is now nearly upon us and for once I am well prepared. Xmas tree and decorations up. Most presents purchased and Xmas cards ready to be written. Now I have a grand daughter who was born on the 23rd Dec I am looking forward this year to her birthday and and Xmas day. This year she will probably enjoy playing with the Xmas paper and the boxes the presents are in rather than the presents themselves.

My mother died when I was young and my Dad was only 52. He always missed her most at Xmas and while it can be the happiest time of the year for most people it is the loniest and saddest for many others. We need to always remember that! That’s the sermon for today.

Some of you may not know the North East of England well. It is the most Northerly part of England below Scotland and the people are different to most other parts of the Uk. The Roman Wall runs right through the middle of it and it was , when it was called Northumbria the most religious and learned place in England. It consists of Nothumberland , Durham and parts of North Yorkshire. People from the Newcastle area are called Geordies and have a dialetic which is different to other parts of England. The language is a mixture of Anglo Saxon, Celtic and Norse words. Northumberland has many castles, beautiful beaches and is the least populated in England. I will return to this subject of my home area in the future. It has a unigueness about it , the people and and the place.

This weeks poem is attached. It is a love poem, unusual for me.Revelation

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ITS FRIDAY IT MUST BE BLOGDAY

Other week in my life has slipped by without any great effort. A week of writing , book launchs, football , medical check-ups ( nearly said check-outs) Writing was a struggle, Book launch (not mine I hasnt to add) not so good results for the Mighty Magpies this week and the medical check-up told me I,m very well apparently. But there are two big football matches, tonight it is Blyth Spartans in the FA cup and Chelsea are at Newcastle tomorrow. I will watch Tv tonight and be at the match tomorrow. I again stress Im old but my enthusiasm for football (sports in general is undiminished)

But what has happened on the beach this week. Well temperatures have dropped a lot and the tides have been very high bringing in a lot of seaweed. Colder for us humans but for dogs they still go swimming in the sea. My daughter had her labradoodle hair cut this week poor thing looks like a shorn sheep. Great timing!!!.

Might as well have my gripes of the week now. My local council said they would have to cut their budgets by £14m this year but by £50 over 3 years.  They also announced they were increasing there expenses from £7800 to £9700 an increase of 24% Are these people for real. To say the locals are revolting is an understatement.

The other gripe is that George Osborne and his band of Toryboys are upset that the BBC have said his cutbacks are savage. Of course they are. Whats he expect them to say. They accuse the BBC of being left wing but dont mention 90% of the press are bordering on Xenophobia.

Ok so thats enough of that. Sorry to bore you. While I remember, in my medical check-up doctors and nurses have been alerted to the rise of Altzeimers and dementia so are checking up on us oldies. They ask various questions and get you to recite the months and 1-20 backwards that sort of stuff. I told the nurse my brain was full and I was forgetting stuff now cos I couldnt get any more in. Anyway she concluded I was fine (dont know how I got away with it) and said she would see me again soon. So I said have you not forgotten to take blood samples and my blood pressure which she had. Was she embarrassed!!!!

Had a thought on the beach today, can you still get aniseed balls? In fact cinder toffee, mint imperials, penny sherberts(ok obviously not) gob stoppers etc Its all sophisticated stuff these days. No wonder kids are fat. When I was young I held the Blyth Grammar School record of 2hrs 20 odd minutes for one mint imperial. A packet lasted weeks. The only aniseed taste you seem to get now are those namby pamby herbs you get, what are they coriander and other such stuff.YOUR COUNTRY NEEDS YOU 2nd draft  Todays poem I hope is self explanatory For those people who read this stuff, thanks. And if you don’t sod you.