Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Carry on Camping

At the moment I am sitting in bed watching a programme on BBC Four about camping. I had totally forgotten the joys. Back in the mid eighties I remember how at a moment's notice my husband and I [we were newly weds back then] would decide on a lovely sunsoaked weekend after work at the office to pack up our small two-man tent and set off for Saundersfoot, West Wales.

There was no worry that we'd taken enough food and clothing, we just threw things together and off we went. The place we stayed was in Step-a-Side [what a quaint name!] and consisted of a bare farmer's field with a toilet block!

The farmer came round early each morning shouting out 'Rent money!'. It cost just £3.00 per night. We had a small gas stove which we used to boil both kettle and frying pan for such delights as fried eggs, bacon, sausage and beans. There's nothing like eating alfresco!

We took my daughter to the same place when she was eighteen months old, along with my mother [a ready made and willing baby sitter.] Unfortunately, we lasted only a day as after setting up a much larger tent this time it was a wash out!

I think I'd like to try it again sometime in the future, even though I love my home comforts these days!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas and the weather

View from Rhydycar, Merthyr Tydfil, overlooking the old Glamorganshire Canal. Some of the icicles suspended from the bridge were 2 feet long!

Had a lovely Christmas day yesterday the snow was still deep and crisp and even! Got up early to clear the decks in the kitchen before putting the turkey into roast. Then I peeled the potatoes, carrots and parsnips and prepared the pigs in blankets and stuffing. Nathan, my son, presented me with a fabulous laptop which I am using at the moment. I know I'm well behind the times not to have one before now, instead, making do with an Alphasmart!

My hubby bought me a lovely white gold and diamond pendant, my daughter, Leyna, gave me some fluffy white slippers and some toiletries.

My mother and brother joined us for Christmas dinner and I have to say it all went like a dream. Everything cooked to perfection and it was the first Christmas day in years when I didn't get stressed out!

The afternoon was spent chatting and listening to music [my new Michael Buble CD]. My nephew, Ryan, called later followed by Leyna's boyfriend, Lee, then Nathan's girlfriend, Helen. It was lovely having everyone together.

In the night we snuggled up to watch some Christmas tele: 'Come Fly with Me' David Walliams and Matt Lucas, was so funny, followed by 'The Royle Family'. Bliss.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Girls' Night Out and Father's Day BBQ

Had a marvellous weekend. Had a rare girlie night out on Saturday night with my old friend, Trisha. When I say 'old' I mean she's a friend from years ago not an OAP lol. It was a fantastic night. I bumped into people I hadn't seen for years and met some new interesting ones too. Spent the remainder of the evening dancing myself dizzy at The Three Horse Shoes pub.

Nathan and Helen

Then had another great day yesterday at my daughter and her boyfriend's new home. Leyna and Lee hosted a barbeque for Father's Day. The sun shone all day and I had the best time. It was the most relaxing time I've had in ages.

Leyna and Shelley


Following the barbeque we played a game. I don't know what it's called but everyone writes down the name of a famous person either fictional or real and pins it on the the person next door to them and they have to guess who that person is. It took me ages to guess I was 'Sooty' lol. I knew I was someone to do with children's TV but for some reason kept thinking of a TV presenter not a puppet. Mind you the glass of Magners and the warm weather might have addled my brain!

Afterwards we went for a family walk with the dogs across the leafy Taff Trail behind their house. I really think I am at my most contented when I am surrounded by my family.

Happy Father's Day, Col!
Me and Colin
[notice my 'I am Boss!' badge.]

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Stuart Cable R.I.P

I was shocked to hear the sad news that former Stereophonics' drummer, Stuart Cable, had died yesterday morning. So far, the police are saying his death is not suspicious and some websites are suggesting he may have choked on his vomit. Whatever happened, he died far too young.

I saw the Stereophonics at The Millenium Stadium in Cardiff in 2001 and they were awesome. He was still the drummer back then. The atmosphere that night was electric as fans performed a Mexican wave around the stadium and waved huge inflatable daffodils whist the Phonics played 'Just Looking', 'More Life in a Tramps Vest', 'Local Boy in a Photograph', etc. It was one of the best concerts I've ever been to. Coincidentally, one of the band members', Richard Jones's brother, Jason, was working on the electrics on our kitchen at the time and got us a signed autographed pic of the band. Jason rang Richard, who was in London, from our kitchen while Handbags and Gladrags was playing on the radio and had just grabbed the number one slot.

The press have made a lot out of suggesting that Stuart and Kelly Jones [the front man] had a huge rift that hadn't healed, but that doesn't appear to be the truth. Kelly Jones spoke on the BBC Wales news last night saying that they had patched things up a few years ago and had planned on meeting up in a couple of days.

There was a huge rift of course back in 2003 when Stuart was asked to leave the band due to commitment issues. That must have hurt, but he appeared to be over it and had several projects on the go, most recently with his BBC Radio Wales show Cable Rock and playing drums with his new band, Killing for Company who supported The Who last year.

A post mortem has been held, but by all accounts it will take weeks for the results following toxicology reports.

I'm wondering if he will be cremated at Llwydcoed Crematorium as my mother-in-law is one of the organists and she may well end up playing for his funeral. If that's the case, she will be in great musical company if Kelly at el show up!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Back in the Saddle

Well, I decided it's about time I got back on the horse again. The blog writing horse that is. I've been so busy with my Open University course: The Diploma in Literature and Creative Writing. Then of course there was all the awful stuff that many of you know happened to me last year. I don't want to rake all over the ins and outs of it again, done enough of that this past few months...let's just say things are much better and we're working at things.

I finally sent in my last assignment to the OU the other week. So now have more time to write other things beside assignments. The big final assignment was to write a thirty minute play. Something I really enjoyed doing. I've always fancied script writing and one of my previous writing tutors suggested years ago I try it. I might even send the script to the BBC as a calling card, they accept stage plays of that length.

I'm trying to be positive about life and think about the good things that came out of the bad of last year. I made two new friends who I don't think I would have otherwise made. Both are very precious to me, I love the bones of them. I also learned a lot about myself. Mainly that I'd been coasting along in life oblivious to what was really going on under my nose. The drifting apart in the relationship I'm talking about here. Now I am much more switched on and aware of things. It's made me realise that the rug can be pulled at any time. A piece of paper doesn't hold any relationship together.

If I could turn back time, would I do so? Maybe if I could have prevented all the bad stuff happening. But then would I have learned something from it? I guess not.

I'm far more cynical now and perhaps the saddest thing of all is that I don't believe in fairy tales any more. But maybe that's a good thing...