Wednesday, 31 August 2016

The Legs Game

I know you have heard me talk about"the Legs Game" that we play on car journeys and I couldn't remember if I had ever explained it to you. What you see above is a score sheet from our day out with the Bluefunnels on Saturday.
This game was taught to me at a Games Fair in Reading way back in the 1980s by a man called Don Turnbull. He was the head Honcho for TSR(UK)Games who manufactured Dungeons and Dragons.
Anyhooo he said that he played this travelling game to keep the other occupiers of the car quiet

Each person takes a turn and they have the very next pub that is on the left-side of the road, with the entrance on the road you are travelling. If it is on a corner with the entrance on the side street it doesn't count.
You count the legs in the name. So, and this is the technical bit, The King's head has NO legs. The something ARMS has NO legs. The Badger has four legs.
The more advanced ones can be argued over but the official thing is as follows
For groups such as the cricketers, the coach and horses the fox and hounds it is the minimum number required to make the wording correct.
For example: The cricketers. You need a bowler and a batsman to play cricket. That's all so only four legs. The coach and horses? eight legs because the minimum is two horses - and NO "My Lord Admiral you cannot have two for the coachman and eight for the people that might be inside"
The fox and hounds is one fox and two hounds, no more.
Then we come to things like The Prince of Wales Feathers - no legs for that because it is the feathers it is named for.
Badger's wood? no legs because it is the wood not the badger.

This game certainly generates conversation and ensures that we rarely travel on Motorways - my scoreline is the zero. The lord Admiral won and his lady was second.

I hope you have enjoyed this introduction to the wonderful world of travel. Enjoy your next journey!

Monday, 29 August 2016

Me on Monday - Educational journey

We went out with the Bluefunnels on Saturday and everyone knows that we always have an adventure with them.
The Lord Admiral drove because when he has his new knee it will be several months before he can get behind the wheel again. Their new car has loads of whistles and bells - and warning bleeps when you stray out of your lane. We hear that one quite a lot because there were so many other whistles and bells to play with and the Lord Admiral likes things like that. Lady B was sitting in the back with me so she could nudge his seat to keep him straight.
We went to The Rest Cafe here in Newport and had a delicious breakfast and then, with the Lord Admiral driving and Mr M directing we headed west. We took them to Aberglasney. There was a short stop at the West End Cafe in Llandovery because we needed a loo break so we had to have a cuppa and the gentlemen had an "iced slice" simply because they had some.They had never been before and thought it was lovely and Aberglasney was jolly good too. We had a cuppa in the tea room and admired the gardens while dodging wasps. As I am seriously allergic to wasp stings I kept my head down and let Mr M do his usual thing of giving the wasp one warning to go away and then... well, they usually go.

I expect you are wondering where the educational bit comes in, yes? We talk about stuff all the time in the car. All sorts of stuff and during the course of these conversations I learned that the slighted tower at Caerphilly castle leans more than the leaning tower of Pisa, I learned that we must never eat at the Don Cafe (as I don't know where it is I shall avoid all cafes called Don) and the third thing is that I learned that we now have a Hungry Horse Pub in Newport! Yeah!

From Aberglasney we went over the hill and round a bit until we reached Gorslas and then we stopped at the Cwmcerrig Farm Shop. OH this place is fabulous. The produce they have there is just awesome and they breed and grow their own meat too. The also have a restaurant.............. pause while I wipe the drool from my lips. Mr M and I had the pork dinner; three good slices of beautifully roasted pork, a maximum of four roast potatoes, a choice of about six other vegetables and then gravy. good thick pork gravy.............oh yum. Lord and Lady B had pie. Minced beef for his Lordship and beef and ale for her ladyship.Then we shopped. Did I say the produce was awesome. The whole place is so good I forgot to take pictures
Our Journey home took us past the Gleesy Spoon so I took a picture for the "signs" album and we stopped at Aberdulais Falls for a loo break and a cuppa. I think my picture of Lord and Lady B is really good. She is NOT giving him an earful of grief, she was laughing at something he said - OH OH I can use this as my "someone Laughing" picture for the Scavenger Hunt.

My thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me coming back to write more

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Me on Monday - Hugging and kissing grandchildren

This was what I did on Monday this week. Can you think of anything better than cwtching (like hugging but with a Welsh accent) your newest grandchild on a Monday evening after an afternoon of delight with her big brothers? I can't.

Did I learn anything? oh yes, seeing how much the boys have matured since I last saw them, seeing how much they delight in Mr M and how they stay close to him and soak up every word he says.

All this after a weekend meeting the newly discovered cousins and finding out how spookily alike we are. According to Mr M, who watched us for more than half an hour, "You two are like peas in a pod, You were moving your hands and wearing the same expression..."
What we were actually doing was trying to find the birth registration for an elusive ancestor so we were in front of the computer and trying to think of how else to word the searches.
There were many hugs and loads of laughter, lots of coffee a few snacks and then a chippie supper. What a wonderful weekend! what marvellous people. I can't wait until they come to visit us

My thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me coming back to write more

Monday, 15 August 2016

Me on Monday - Sadwich?

Several new things to report on this Monday. You'll have to hope I remember to mention them as we go through.
We like a treat on a Saturday and mostly we go out for breakfast and then find somewhere to aim for in our meanderings. I would tell you where this cafe is situated but we intend taking the Lord Admiral and Lady Bluefunnel there on the next day out. If I say that I couldn't eat all of my breakfast and Mr M left a suasage and a slice of bacon you can see how much they give you. Delicious!
New cafe for Saturday breakfast
 We headed kind of northwest-ish, I think. I forget now. We avoid motorways because you can't play the legs game and we went up a road we have never been up because the person driving in front of us was a............. nincompoop! Mr M said "I am not following him any more! I will just want to shake him warmly by the throat" We finished up in Builth Wells which is more northish than westish and we took the Llandovery road even though we had already said we weren't going there. We went to the Cambrian Woollen Mill. Which is for sale and I wish I had the money to buy it.
Bacon what? Should I tell them or just photograph it and laugh
 It is the height of the tourist season and we had almost driven past because it looks closed when Mr M saw the twinkling of the "open" sign in a window. We stopped for a cuppa because we prefer to use local places rather than chains as we like to keep our money in the area. That's when I saw the blackboard. Now forgive me if I am being old fashioned but does that look good to you? no, nor me. I think it shows that the people who are running it are tired and they just haven't got the energy any more.
New technology
We moved on, discussing what we would do if the place were ours and then we needed another "rest" room. We decided to get something to eat to save having to cook when we finally got home and the choice was services food or MacDonalds using the new electronic ordering boards. No choice really, Mr M loves trying new electronic technology. The fact that he didn't have his glasses so I had to read the instructions and press the right bit of screen wasn't a factor. This was New!! and it was fun and we haven't had MacD since ooooooh Wednesday last week. What can I say? I am nearly 70 I can, to quote my father, eat what I like at my age!

So there we have it, new cafe, new back road now travelled and new technology and all on Saturday. On Sunday we did very little except talk about stuff and sleaze around.

My thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me writing

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Me on Monday - Still excited

Bernard, Veronica and great grandson Oliver
On Monday I was a little distracted - We had Cousins in our house!
Kind of sounds like we were infested but it wasn't like that at all.

Sandy and  Bob are over here for a family wedding before going on a cruise. They came to our house to look at the family tree and to read some of the information I have dug up about those elusive actors in the last 20 odd years

Sandy, me, Miss Boo and Bob doing the Pat Duckham Pose.
 Thats a whole other story
Miss Boo just love "uncle" Bob and watching him talk to her shows us just how lucky his grandchildren are to have him as their grandpa. My Cousin Sandy is still just as sweet and gentle and kind as she was when we were children and my Dad would take us to visit her Dad (brothers) and us kids would be outside playing. My mother would take extra clothes for me because she knew that I would be the one to get wet or muddy while Sandy seemed to stay pristine clean and only needed to wash her hands before we sat down to tea. Sandy's Mum always seemed a little overwhelmed by our family. Probably, now I think about it the reason would be that when my Dad said he was going to see Steve there would be other siblings that would want to go and as the only ones with a car they would come with us, all piled into the back of whatever van my Dad was driving at the time. No need for seat belts as we were packed in like sardines.

Anyhoo, I put the word out and Bernard and Veronica responded. I have always looked up to my cousin Bernard as a kind of older brother figure and when he married Veronica - way back in the mists of time - I just knew she was right for our family. There is absolutely no nonsense with her. If you are being an idiot she will tell you, if she disagrees with you you will know and you can defend your position or shut up, she doesn't mind. She is happy to disagree and will accept it and move on but if you lie to her or are rude or disrespectful then you will cease to exist as far as she is concerned. I love her honesty and her strength.

Miss Boo is now old enough to learn about all these people. She has met them before at family reunions but having just a few in the house gave her the chance to learn them. She was also totally enamoured of Oliver. She took him all over the house and told me afterwards that she just wanted to hug him and cuddle him because he is sooooo gorgeous. UNfortunately he is two and hugs and cuddles are rare gifts from him at this age.

So that was me on MOnday. Laughing, we do a lot of that at family gatherings, talking, sharing the old family stories so that they can be handed down to the next generation

My thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me writing.

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Misc Grey Bits - a Story

This is Louisa. She died of a brain anurism ten years ago and she was my cousin. At one time she worked in a laboratory that tested water. She could really tell a story. This is one of hers.

The storage room where they kept all the glassware and equipment for the lab was very untidy and so Louisa and the cleaner began to sort it out. They had a bin for broken or damage stuff, they cleaned off the shelves and decided that alphabetical was the way to go. In each catagory they sub divided by size. This was fine until they came upon items that had to be in the store room but were not for use in the lab - they were unidentified.

Louisa designated a box at the end of a row of shelves as "The Miscellaneous Box" and they put all the unidentifiable bits in there. Most of them were grey. It became the Misc grey bits box

Can you see where this is going?

I knew you would.

The box remained at the end of the row of shelves for the next five years, until the lab was closed and the testing moved to another part of the UK. By this time there was a phrase that had become part of our family language.

"File it under Misc Grey Bits" and we still do.

Today Louisa has been in my mind because I was sorting out a drawer in the kitchen and thought to myself  Where shall I put this? oh I'll file it under Misc Grey Bits" and there she was with that wicked grin and the droll sense of humour that would leave your ribs aching from laughing.

Missing you girl

Monday, 1 August 2016

Me on Monday - pictures

 You have probably realised by now that Mr M's hobby is driving and mine is being with him so most weekends we go out to do something - deliver books to a grandchild, find some mixed herbs, look for new sandals because mine fell apart in Amroth. That sort of thing and usually we travel for a while to achieve this.
Then we are free to do what we want and usually this consists of Mr M saying "Where do you fancy going?" and me replying in a whining voice "I don't knoooow" Then he will say "Hurrrumph" or something similar and point the car in a random direction. Then he will suddenly say "We haven't been up this road before" and all hurrrrrumphing is forgotten as we are embarking on an adventure.

We went out for lunch on Saturday. To the Oyster Catcher in Penarth Marina - well not exactly IN the marina that would be silly - and wet - but close enough to watch the boats in the river and the people all around. The traffic was horrendous so when we had eaten we went up to the roundabout and headed for Penarth sea-front. We knew we wouldn't be able to park at that time on a Saturday but we had to drive slowly anyway because everyone does so I could take pictures.

 The Balmoral was moored to the pier! How exciting! She is one of two paddle steamers that have regular runs in the Bristol Channel during the summer. She goes from Penarth or Barry or sometimes even Newport if the tides are right and she travels across the Bristol Channel to Ilfracombe (in this house for reasons that are now totally obscure it is pronounced Ill - frack - comm - bee) So there she was and I got all excited and suddenly there was a parking space so Mr M parked and said "Someone playing by water - loads of people fishing" and I had the chance of another scavenger hunt picture so I nipped out of.......... ok I clambered slowly out of the car and tried to scurry down to the lifeboat
ramp so I could take pictures.

There she was. A Mum playing with her child by the water. As I raised the camera she threw a large stone into the water and I thought "Please do that again and let me catch it" and she did!

We then headed kind of north west -ish and Mr M asked the satnav to find a Morrisons so we could get fuel. It took us to Porth. We had never been there before so that was interesting. The Morrisons there doesn't have a fuel station so we stopped to use the loo and have a cuppa and learnt that the people in Porth don't use the trolley cupboards either. You know those huge things that you can put your trolley of shopping into while you go for a cuppa? well, in Porth they are actually in the cafe so Mr M started to laugh and told me to look. Outside the row of cupboards were four trolleys full of shopping. By the time I turned and picked up the camera it was too late, the little old ladies had scurried down the aisles and reclaimed their shopping. The disappointment was lessened when we were nearly home and Mr M said "look a car with astroturf" I managed a picture of that.
Apparently it has been parked there for several days and Mr M had seen it when he came home from work.

My thanks to Sian at FromHighInTheSky for inventing this meme and keeping me writing