Thursday, February 06, 2014

from herself

hello readers

this is a sad post for me to have to write and i have been putting it off for quite a while.  before christmas joker's health got to the point where it was time for him to make the final trip to the vet and for us to say goodbye to him.  he was cheery and kind right up to the end but it was the right time for him to go.

dave was sad to start with but has coped well and is back to his usual self. us peeps were very sad but also grateful that we were able to do this last thing for joker and didn't have to let him suffer.

so there won't be any more posts on joker's blog, although i'll leave it up on the net. thank you to all our friends all over the world from me and from joker, whose spirit lives on in so many ways.


Friday, July 06, 2012

which came first...


dear readers, today's post may have more sensitive souls cringing into their cornflakes so i would urge anyone who is eating to finish their nosh first before proceeding.

herself has a rather fine van called dan, which young dave and i are happy to be transported in.  as with all mechanical creatures, dan the van develops rattles and squeaks from time to time which need to be attended to before bits fall off and cause problems.  herself has some tame mechanics who are happy to oblige.  they have been with herself through a variety of vehicles, from the rather fancy arthur the audi, via the decidedly less fancy skoda to dan the van.  herself likes them because they do not assume that being a lady means a person has no understanding of big ends.  

anyway, dan the van was dropped off for his service and picked up later on, having had a proper once over and a new tyre.

"i had to open the windows to air it," said one of the tame mechanics, "it was a bit high in there.  i would suggest you get yourself some fabreze!"   herself rather sheepishly paid the bill and made her escape.  when i heard of this upon her return home i could only concur.  the back of dan the van can get rather eye-watering, especially for a chap of my advancing years.   the main culprit is undoubtedly young dave, who, as my regular readers know, has an unattractive propensity to roll in dead things, rotting things, and the products of digestion.

herself was suitably chastened by the fact that even a very oily mechanic could not stand the smell in her van and got busy with a bucket of hot soapy water.  her labours were accompanied by a lot of groaning due to her bruised rear, the cause of which was a tumble from the magnificent bonzo.  eventually dan the van was finished.  however, the smell had quite clearly not abated.  herself decided it must be a stray apple core under the seat and resolved to set my boy to work searching for it the next time he was seen in a vertical position.

fast forward to a couple of days ago and a trip to the beach with our good friends the terrors.  she had just got us all out of the back and onto the beach when she realised that she did not have enough bags to collect four sets of little offerings.  back we went to the van.  herself opened the passenger door to collect some bags from the glove pocket in the door.  no sooner had she scooped up a handful of bags than she dropped them on the pavement and leapt back several feet.  her pale and horrified countenance made me look more closely at the bags.   they were moving.  out of the corner of my eye i could see that young dave had also noticed this, and while i was merely exhibiting a scientific interest, young dave was mentally tucking in his bib and getting ready for a nice snack.

fortunately herself also noticed this and bundled us back into the van so she could give the writhing bags her full attention.   the aroma in and around the van had got noticeably worse since the bags had been retrieved and on closer inspection herself ascertained that the cause of the movement was around 500 writhing maggots who had clearly been feasting on the remains of an egg.  how the egg got into the glove pocket is probably going to be lost in the mists of time, although i suspect it came from one of my boy's chickens.

herself peered into the glove pocket in the door, then leapt back in horror.  there were many more writhing maggots in the door.   having pulled her fleece up over her face and donning plastic bags over each hand herself scooped as many maggots as she could out of the door and onto the pavement.  she then tried squirting mosquito repellent into the glove pocket, to no avail.  in desperation she found a bottle of sun tan lotion in the other door and poured its contents into the passenger door glove pocket, thus drowning the remaining maggots.  she then collected up the carnage from the pavement and found a bin.  for someone who watches crime dramas about forensic science so avidly i have to say she was decidedly lily-livered about this whole affair, but i suppose we all have our weaknesses.

for the rest of the day we had to drive round in the van with drowned maggots slopping around in a sea of suntan lotion.  eventually herself procured some kitchen towel and removed the worst of it, although a few drowned maggots still remain to be removed.   a joyous task for today!

the moral of this story, dear readers, is not to spend too much time worrying about whether the chicken or the egg came first...

Monday, June 11, 2012

its all pooh

dear readers, i have been prompted out of my silence by discovering a half-written post about a most blogworthy sunday morning.

the sunday in question was a lovely sunny day, which was just as well as it was the day herself had arranged to move rather a lot of the magnificent bonzo's magnificent pooh from the field where he used to live to her friend mary's allotment.  (for the benefit of my overseas readers an allotment is a strip of land you can rent to grow vegetables on if you don't have the space in your garden.)  herself no longer has a towbar on her vehicle as uncle gary has taken over custody of the 4 wheel drive and we now travel in style in a blue van called dan.  she also no longer has a trailer as she rather rashly sold it when money was a little tight.

the lack of any means to move the pooh did not deter either herself or her friend mary.  mary has a trailer but no towbar, so there only remained this final part of the puzzle to sort out and the pooh would be on the move.   herself and mary have several friends with towbars and the shortlist was narrowed down to two.  of these, one had problems with the rest of the vehicle which meant towing anything was unwise, so the lucky winner of the pooh-towing contest was the magnificent bonzo's football coach who is called crisp.  crisp has a truck of generous proportions which herself rather tactlessly said had the look of a drug dealer's vehicle when she first saw it.  personally i would have thought someone involved in nefarious activities would be keen to avoid attention but herself is not known for her common sense.

anyway, at the appointed time herself and crisp called at mary's house to collect the trailer.  it was at this point that the first flaw in the plan became apparent.   at some point in the truck's former life someone had obviously shunted into the back of it, bending its rather fine bumper somewhat.   this meant that there was a smaller gap above the towbar than was ideal and the handle of the trailer did not fit into the gap.   herself went into mary's house and came back with a box of spanners and some wd40.   with a bit of wrangling the bumper was persuaded to wait in the garage, the trailer was connected to the truck and they were on their way.  mary has an injured shoulder so was not allowed to be involved in the actual shovelling operation.

when herself and crisp arrived up at the hill, herself thought it would be wise to call in on mrs collie, the magnificent bonzo's former landlady, to let her know what was occurring, lest she thought someone was stealing the pooh.   other than young dave i am not sure who would be interested in stealing pooh but there you are.  mrs collie's house was full of people who had stayed the night having been to dinner the night before.  they were creating a feast for breakfast and the kitchen was a hive of activity.  this did not deter herself from making a pot of coffee and liberating some leftover banoffee pie for herself and crisp.

eventually they could put off the pooh-towing no longer and went out to the muckheap.  some vigorous shovelling and raking later the trailer was full.   it was not until the intrepid pooh-shovellers attempted to tow it back onto the track that it became apparent that the trailer had a puncture. regular readers will know that this is not the first time that such an event has occurred.   there was the occasion of the wood in the wood.  and then there was the occasion of the camping trip.  so the idea of a puncture was not entirely new.

ever the optimist, herself took out her patent tyre-pumping up gadget from her van.  this plugs into the cigarette lighter thingy. herself pulled the van up next to the trailer and got ready to inflate.  the fatal flaw with this operation was that the cigarette lighter thingy in herself's van was inoperative.

"never mind," she said to crisp, "we can plug it into your truck!"   this plan was unsuccessful as well due to the wire not being long enough to reach from the truck cab to the trailer tyre.  the trailer could not be unhitched due to the weight of the pooh.  herself's van was full of scrap wood and her jack was under the floor under the scrap wood so changing the wheel presented something of a challenge.

as the pooh-shovellers were debating what to do next a group of people came by, accompanied by some dogs.  herself, as is her habit, stopped to chat.

"is that little grey dog called merlin?" she asked, pointing to a doppelganger for young dave, who we have met before.

"no, he's pagan," replied the owner.  i'm not sure what relevance the little chap's spiritual beliefs had to anything but there we are.  anyway, eventually herself was persuaded to return her attention to the flat tyre.

"i know," she said, "i'll see if anyone has a car jack and we can jack up the trailer and change the wheel for the spare!"   with that, up she sprang and sprinted into mrs collie's house to pester the poor long-suffering hungover people.   amazingly, a jack was located and with no further ado the trailer was levitated and the wheel changed.

the journey back to mary's allotment was slow but uneventful and the pooh was duly deposited.  there only remained returning the trailer, unhitching it from the truck, re-fitting the bumper to the truck and then having a cuppa and all was well.

somehow i think it might have been simpler to persuade the magnificent bonzo to position his rear end over mary's vegetables from time to time...

Monday, April 09, 2012

anyone for golf?

watching some deer

at last i have managed to pin herself to the keyboard.  this is because she is rather tired and not in a rush to get out of her chair.

herself's friend crisp has been having a fitness regime for some time and now and again invites herself to join him and his terriers on their early morning walk.  while an early morning walk might sound quite gentle and relaxing, in fact it involves marching up and down a very hilly golf course, punctuated by crisp doing energetic exercises involving benches.

i have not been on one of these walks before as i have been a little under the weather with my feet and my teeth but after a recent visit to the evil vet i am back to rude health and can yet again give those youngsters a run for their money.

the plan was to meet at 7am at the golf course. the day dawned damp and grey but i was not going to miss a walk after all this time and nudged young dave into action. our walk was rather bracing, due to the horizontal rain and biting wind, but otherwise uneventful, until we got to the far edge of the golf course.  by this time herself had been instructed in the finer points of golf, in particular not to loudly ask inane questions when a golfer was trying to line up a shot, and young dave had been dissuaded from helpfully retrieving the little white balls for people.

as we were passing a clump of woodland, the terriers disappeared from view.  this is not an unusual occurrence, particularly in terrain full of rabbit holes, so herself and crisp continued.  however it became clear that not all was well when we could hear noises that were clearly not the terriers coming from the middle of the wood. 

on returning to the wood herself could see a young deer lying in the undergrowth being attacked by the terriers.  young dave and i were able to restrain ourselves (young dave because he did not know what to do and me because i am too old for all that bloodthirsty stuff).  crisp got all four of us canines on our leads and herself went to see what condition the deer was in.  it was obviously injured but could walk and after some discussion it was decided that it would stand a better chance being left where it was for its mother to come back for it.

herself dropped young dave and me off at home and having changed out of her wet stuff went to sort out the magnificent bonzo.  there she spoke to a lady called rocks, who has some experience with animals and said that the deer's mother was unlikely to go near it if it smelt of dogs and that it would probably die without help.  herself rounded up a wheelbarrow, a horse rug and a towel and arrange to meet crisp back at the golf course so they could take the deer to a vet.

the walk from the car park to the deer seemed even further the second time, particularly when pushing a wheelbarrow, but eventually they arrived at the wood.  the deer had moved some distance from where it had been but herself eventually found it.  the deer's eyes were covered and it was gently rolled onto the horse rug, and carried out of the wood to the waiting wheelbarrow.   the walk back seemed even longer, going into the wind with a heavy load in the wheelbarrow, but after about half an hour they were back by the car park.  it was only when herself went to reach for her keys to open her van that she realised she had left her bag in the wood when they were picking up the deer.  this would have been bad enough but the bag contained £250 which herself had got out of the bank to pay for some work that is being done to the house by her friend shorn.

it was decided that the priority was to get the deer to medical attention and so it was loaded into the back of crisp's car.  or rather crisp's mum's car, which is a small hatchback not really designed for carrying deer.  the first port of call was the RSPCA, which is near to the golf course.  as today is a bank holiday the RSPCA was closed, but crisp managed to locate a lady who in turn found a man who told them that there was no vet on site and the deer had to be taken to a local vet.  

after further travel the vet was located and the deer taken into the consulting room.  when it was unwrapped it was clear that the injuries were not going to be easy to treat and as deer are not known for coping well with the stress of captivity it was decided to put the poor thing to sleep.  herself and crisp sat and had a sombre cup of coffee and said goodbye to the vets and the deer before heading back to the golf course and setting off a third time for the wood to fetch herself's bag.

this time they were resigned to being soaked to the skin. not having a heavy wheelbarrow load they made better time, but on arrival at the wood herself could not find her bag.  crisp was on the edge of the wood having a quick cigarette so herself shouted to him to ask him to ring her phone so she could hear the bag.  the phone went straight to voicemail, no doubt because of the poor signal among the hills, so herself had to search the wood, bent double to avoid the hawthorn trees and brambles.  miraculously the bag came into sight and even more miraculously still had the money in it (although i cannot imagine who would be wandering around a prickly wood in the pouring rain apart from a mad old fool like herself).

the walk back to the car park was even wetter and colder than the previous one as the weather had worsened but at least an end to the whole thing was in sight.  herself phoned home ahead of her arrival to ask himself to put on the hot water so she could have a bath.

my boy was still asleep when herself got back but had grasped through the fog of drowsiness that an adventure had been going on in his absence.  part of his course at college is called 'deer management' so he might have been useful this morning...

Sunday, March 04, 2012

some small dogs

dear readers, as i have been having something approaching writer's block, or more accurately my typist has been having typist's block, i thought i would try and keep you informed of my activities by posting pictures of what has been going on. here you can see a selection of small dogs. from the left oyu can see daisy, rosie, bob, harry and misty. the latter two have been our guests for a few days while their human, crisp, has had a knee operation. i have been a little jealous of their comandeering of herself's lap but to be fair i cannot cram my elderly and rather creaky frame into the correct shape to sit on a lap these days so i should be more magnanimous.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

when is a door not a door?

dear readers, i am not going to bother apologising for my absence.  reading over old posts i see nothing but grovelling apologies for not having managed to get herself to sit at the keyboard for me.  by now all my faithful readers will either have abandoned ship or concluded that i am a dog of very little influence.

what has persuaded herself out of her cave is the saga of the door.  the peep's friend shorn is currently without wheels (for those readers of a literal bent, this does not mean that shorn usually has wheels attached to him.  it means he has no car.  just so that's clear.)   he is managing fine without wheels on the whole but occasionally has large things which need to be transported.  luckily herself has a van. 

the large thing in question on this occasion was a door.   shorn is a songsmith by trade but in order to keep a roof over his head to keep his guitar dry he does things with wood and pipes in people's houses in return for which they pay him.   the job he had to buy the door for was a bathroom in a rather nice part of town.  herself had arranged to collect him at 2.30 to take him to the door shop, after which they would travel to the house where the door was to be fitted and then back to shorn's house.  herself had made it clear that she would have to leave from there at 4.15 in order to fetch my boy from college at 5.

things did not start well.  herself was sitting at the computer looking at lurchers in need of homes (something that always makes me a little nervy) when her phone rang.   it was shorn.

"have you left yet?" he asked.  herself admitted that she had not.  someone with even the most rudimentary knowledge of mathematics would have deduced that she was unlikely to be on time, given that she has no helicopter.  for once fortune was on her side.  shorn explained that he was going to be late as his daughter's christmas play had overrun.  his daughter was playing a playing card which required wearing a wonderful costume made by shorn and mrs shorn and therefore leaving early was not an option.

"no worries," said herself, turning to a web page with irish wolfhounds on it (a sight which had me covering my eyes with my paws), "there's plenty of time."  this assumption showed a spectacular lack of memory as to how things tend to pan out around here.  'plenty of time' tends not to be how it works.

herself arrived at shorn's house just as he and the shornlets arrived home.  mrs shorn had just popped to the shop to get a few things.  after a cuppa, shorn rang mrs shorn to see how long she would be.  the shornlets are too small to leave unattended.  mrs shorn said that she was in iceland.  this seems to me to be a long way to go just to get a few bits of shopping but i am only a lurcher so i may have missed something.  the shornlets were duly deposited with a friendly neighbour and the door-buying commenced.

the door shop had only one door of the required size.  luckily one was enough. a philosophical discussion followed as to whether this was the last door or the first one which occupied herself and shorn until they got to the till.

"this is really embarrassing," said shorn, "i've forgotten my wallet!"  herself pointed out that this was a more usual ploy in a restaurant but luckily she had her handbag so was able to pay for the door.   the door was inserted into the van.  while the van is commodious, it was slightly too short for the tailgate to shut, so a piece of rope was employed to keep the tailgate down.  previous journeys with the tailgate tied down have taught herself that the only way to avoid being asphyxiated is to have the windows open.  in summer this is lovely.  in december it is less lovely.  in fact it is freezing.   luckily young dave and i were at home in the warm, having been left behind to make room for the door.

eventually herself and shorn made it to the part of town where the door was to be delivered.  the road was located fairly quickly.  however, it was a very long road and the houses all looked very large and very similar.  shorn telephoned the customer but she did not answer her phone so they drove up and down looking at the houses.   shorn knocked on a few doors to try and see if they were the door people.  he came back to the van, where herself was shivering.

"no luck so far, but i've found a nice man who i could perhaps leave the door with until i come to do the work.  by then i should have got the door number."  herself suggested that it would make more sense to take the door back to shorn's house.  he was not keen on this plan.

"i won't be able to get it back here tomorrow unless i carry it - in this wind i'd take off!"  with which he went off to try more houses.  herself drove slowly down the road, keeping pace with shorn, and wondering what they must look like to local residents, with a door protruding from the back of the van and a decidedly dishevelled look.  just as herself was about to put her foot down shorn came across the lady whose house he was looking for.   the door was duly delivered. 

all that remained now was for shorn to be deposited back at his house and herself to hotfoot it over to my boy's college.  even this did not go smoothly.  herself could not find the hinges nor the receipt.  what she did find was a lego pirate which she gave to shorn.

"this was from my desk at work," she explained.  "i thought you would like it!"

the lego pirate was missing his hat and had a gap where his brain would be.  i am not sure whether this was the case when he had started working with herself or whether his lack of grey matter was symptomatic of herself's condition.  either way shorn seemed rather puzzled by this gift. 

"don't worry," called herself as she got into the van, "all will become clear in due course."

well, that's ok then...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


dear readers, this is 2e.  2e is currently our guest, while her peeps visit new zealand, a place that is a long way away.   because it is so far away they will be gone for 3 weeks.  2e is a friend of mine and young dave's from the farm where the magnificent bonzo lives.  as you will see from the photograph she is very small.   i have concluded that 2e is actually her size rather than her name, and that small dogs such as this are measured by placing them in a bra and seeing which cup-size will most effectively contain them.

2e's small size does not prevent her from moving extremely fast.  she is one of the few dogs who can keep up with young dave, a feat which involves her little legs going at double the speed of light.  i have rather a soft spot for her as she bears quite a resemblance to young dave when he was a pup.  she has a similar habit of hanging on an old chap's beard, which is endearing, although rather eye-watering.

before 2e came to stay mrs 2e came round to have a look at the accommodation.

"she can be a bit of an escape artist," she said.  herself assured her that our garden was dave-proofed when young dave was smaller than 2e and that she would have a job finding any gaps.

this might have been the case, had 2e not had the back legs of a frog. she is able to jump up to face height.  in addition she has the climbing skills of a cat.  on day 1 of her visit there was a knock at the front door.  my boy answered.   it was mr next door. 

"have you lost a dog?" he enquired.  my boy did a quick head count and saw that our guest was nowhere to be seen.  he went round with mr next door and confirmed that the small dog performing the wall of death with young ruby in their living room was in fact supposed to be in our living room.  my boy is difficult to surprise, having lived for his entire life with the peeps, but he was at a loss as to how 2e had managed to gain access to next door.   2e kindly demonstrated her route by trying to repeat the exercise, which involved climbing onto the veg patch and through a tiny gap in the trellis that runs along the top of the dividing wall.  it was decided that the trellis would be re-enforced for the duration of her visit.

on day 2, herself was spending a happy half hour moving soil around in the garden when there was a knock on the door.  it was a neighbour from two doors up in the other direction.   this neighbour owns the house where until recently there were two small dogs.   there is now one large dog, of a breed known as a rotten-wailer.  this fellow is large, black and brown, and pretty scary.  the neighbour informed herself that 2e had made an appearance in her garden.

herself went round and followed the neighbour into her garden.  sure enough, there was 2e sitting looking thoroughly pleased with herself (that is, with 2e's self, not herself's self.  glad that's clear.)  the rotten-wailer went up to her to have a sniff.   this triggered a ferocious response from 2e which by all accounts was entirely disproportionate to her size and showed very poor judgement in terms of self-preservation.  luckily this particular rotten-wailer still has his tail and his owner grabbed hold of it and hung on while herself whisked 2e up into the air and had a firm word with her on the subject of manners.   further fortifications were added to the garden perimeter and so far seem to have been effective, although the peeps are now rather more watchful of our small guest's movements. 

as well as being an accomplished escape artist, 2e is rather adept at interfering with himself's use of his laptop.   the laptop is known as the square pet, and is loathed by young dave on account of its unattractive habit of hogging himself's lap when young dave would rather be there.  he sits and glares at it and has, with an intellectual skill he does not normally demonstrate, learned which set of key strokes precede it being closed down.   when himself presses the escape key to close down his game, young dave shuffles into position and the minute the square pet is removed young dave takes its place on himself's lap, throwing himself on his back for a tickle.

with a little encouragement from young dave, 2e has developed a method of inveigling herself into the gap where himself places the mouse, next to him on the sofa.   she then sits on top of the mouse hand.  it is still possible to operate a mouse with a small dog on the back of your hand, but it does make it extremely difficult for himself in the fine motor skills department.

i just hope she doesn't discover how to do internet shopping...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

onwards and upwards

dear readers, it has been ages since i wrote, for which i can only apologise.  as you will know, herself has not been herself lately.  she has been off work since january with the collie-wobbles.  this takes the form of an allergy to a number of things, including supermarkets, crowds, people standing too close behind her, people shouting, people looking angry, or in fact just being people.  as you might imagine this has had a rather debilitating effect on her, and indeed on the whole household.  

the only way she can cope with a supermarket is with a minder.  my boy has proved to be particularly good in this role.  he has years of experience of supermarket fear.   when this was at its worst herself came up with a strategy for getting the shopping done, without having to leave my boy at home, where he might have got up to untold mischief.  as my boy was already conditioned to the smell of lavender being relaxing, all herself needed to do was find something in the supermarket that smelled of lavender and my boy would calm down.   so she and my boy would enter the supermarket, dash to where the bubble baths were displayed, and heave the top off a lavender one, whereupon my boy would inhale deeply and calm down.  my boy tried to persuade herself to try this but as the peeps now shop at lidl, which tends to have an unusual approach to layout and a rather random selection of products in the personal hygiene field it was not a success.  they had had to content themselves with shopping at the speed of light in order to get out of the shop before dizziness and queasiness make it untenable. 

there does not appear to be much likelihood of herself returning to the legal world and she therefore was referred to a person called an occupational elf in order to be assessed for retirement.  the elf said she was not mad enough to retire.  a second elf was asked to give a view and came to the same conclusion.   however, herself cannot do her job and so she is likely to be dismissed.  call me old-fashioned but i can't help thinking there is something illogical about all this.    it does give us more time with her and the magnificent bonzo is getting ridden pretty much every day so every cloud has a silver lining.

i am hoping now i have persuaded her to get back at the keyboard i might be able to keep in touch rather more effectively than i have been doing.  i hope you are all well and keeping your peckers up.  (for the benefit of my reader in canada 'keep your pecker up' is not as rude as it sounds).

Friday, July 15, 2011

horsing around

bonzo, originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
dear readers, today's post concerns the equine member of our family. as regular readers will know, the magnificent bonzo resides with uncle gary. he has a lovely stable with a little round window high in the wall, and a huge field which he shares with some other hosses. a hoss could not be happpier. young dave and i help herself with stable duties. young dave is a dab hand at clearing a pile of manure in double quick time, and i sit and supervise from the comfort of the sawdust.

in the winter, the hosses go out in the field in the day and come into their stables at night. in the summer this arrangement is reversed in order to keep them away from the flies in the heat of the day and to prevent the magnificent bonzo's magnificent pink nose from burning in the sun. when the hosses come in in the morning they are usually very tired and lie down for a kip after breakfast. the reason for this tiredness has not been altogether clear, although mrs rose, who lives by the field, has heard thundering hooves in the night.

a couple of days ago the gardener at the big house called over to herself.

"your hoss has been attacking the trees!"

it appeared that the magnificent bonzo had been seen going at a eucalyptus tree in the field with more than a little energy. he had pounded at the cage that was supposed to protect it from harm with his hooves until it had given up the ghost and had then munched through the tree, leaving it more of a bush. there had been several witnesses, all of them amazed at the ferocity of the attack. herself was rather concerned about the effect of munching eucalyptus. in the antipodes there are little bears who live in trees and eat eucalyptus. they become drugged by its chemicals and fall out of the trees. i suppose we should be grateful that the magnificent bonzo ate the tree before climbing up into its branches - i suspect having a beast of his size fall out of a tree onto you might hurt.

the next day herself noticed that the magnificent pink nose was a little runny, and that one of the eyes was also a little damp. she concluded that it was unlikely to be remorse on the part of bonzo and decided that perhaps he had a little cold and had been attempting to treat himself with herbal remedies from the trees. when she saw the gardener she shared this theory with him.

"perhaps i'll bash him over the head with a tree to help with his headache," said the gardener, only half joking. it appeared that a second tree had falled foul of the magnificent bonzo's charms. this time it was a london plane. a brief search of the interweb brings up the following on plane trees:

"Legend has it that in ancient Athens there was a long avenue of Plane Trees that became a popular meeting place for Greek philosophers. They used to pace the long avenue amidst heated philosophical discussions, and so they appointed the Plane Tree the emblem of ‘genius’. Apparently the Plane tree offers a remedy to heal general ills, simply chew the bark straight off the Plane Tree. For a cold remedy, the bark should be boiled first."

it would appear that the magnificent bonzo is something of a genius. and his cold has completely gone...

Friday, July 01, 2011

car, bra, hoorah!

dear readers, in an effort to keep up the newly re-established writing habit, i have persuaded herself to write about today's adventure.   the background requires me to refer to matters pre-dating today.

as i have mentioned before, herself is a little flakey at the moment.   the collie-wobbles do not help with ones confidence.  earlier in the week she was round at her friend kt's house for coffee.  kt has an issue with her paperwork.  herself offered to help tame the paperwork and in return kt is going to provide advice to herself on a number of things, including style.  this came about because herself happened to mention that she could not bear to look in a mirror and that she did not have any full length mirrors in the house.  kt promptly steered her to a mirror which had the effect of making herself cover her face and squeal.   it was obvious that she needed some sort of boost.  an appointment was made for today for the paperwork and style session.

when herself called to make sure things were still on, kt told her that she had no wheels as her car had died.  she was going to try and hire a car for a few days while she bought a new one.  herself offered to drive kt to the car hire place and it was agreed that the outing would incorporate a trip to marks expensive to purchase certain foundation garments.  these are necessary in order to avoid looking like a sack.  those of you with long memories will recall that on a previous occasion herself was taken to marks expensive by her maamship for exactly this purpose.  the garment purchased on that occasion no longer fits and was abandoned by herself some time ago.  

when herself arrived at kt's house she found kt on the phone.  more accurately she was on two phones, as you can see from the picture.  this was something to do with the car hire plan.  herself suggested they just get in the car and drive around until they found a car hire place.  on the way kt updated herself with the full story and explained how she had to buy a car very soon or there might not be any cars for sale anywhere (kt makes herself look patient).  herself took a lofty tone about the whole matter.  only someone who drives an old skoda would dare to get lofty about buying cars.

sure enough, they found a car hire place soon enough.  the only trouble was that it didn't have any cars until tomorrow. kt was reeling from herself's discourse on the merits of patience so she agreed to pick one up in the morning.   they then turned towards marks expensive.

i will not dwell on the whole bra-purchasing saga.  it bore a distinct resemblance to the previous visit, with the added complication of herself's current heebie-jeebies in shops.  there was some amazement when herself came out of the changing room in the bra.

"you look like you have lost half a stone!" said kt.  there is some scientific reason why hoiking up the ladies should make you look thinner but i am not sure what it is.  whatever it is, herself looked less like a sack afterwards.  as they were walking back to the car, herself mused in wonder at the size of her new bra.

"i'm a 38d! that's quite big! no wonder the other one was too tight."

"my dear," said kt, "you're practically a porn star!"

i'm not sure i'd go that far. mind you, it depends how far the re-style goes...