A walk along the River Itchen in Hampshire
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
I got back from a camping trip a few days ago. I found a very special place to stay and so I'd like to tell my tale to my fellow Sunday Scribblers who have the word place to consider this week. My trip also fitted perfectly with this weeks' Sunday Whirl words....except one which still hangs in the air unused!
Deep in the forest something stirred – me! Many years ago one of my passions was getting back to nature. Having gone quite a while without sleeping under canvas I decided it was time to once again experience the magic that is camping. I’ve always thrived on discomfort as followers of my travels will know; characters building you know. So, armed with the latest pop up tent, I ventured alone into the woods and found myself in a perfect place; a sun dappled clearing just meant for me.
In this special place I immediately I felt at one with nature. After wrestling with my tent I sat back, beer in hand and glowed with contentment. There I was, just the creatures of the undergrowth and me. The occasional hum of a bee, the stare of an inquisitive deer, a swarm of little midgey things and twigs dropping on my head thanks to some overhead squirrels.
I remember as a child listening to a song to which the words went ‘If you go down to the woods today, you’re sure of a big surprise’. Well, it wasn’t a teddy bears picnic which was to provide it, but a rude awakening in the early hours of the morning when torrential rain, lightning and thunder came storming overhead. With the first crash made me jump out my skin; well, out of my sleeping bag to be precise. I quite enjoy a good storm when I’m watching it from a window, but from within a canvas chrysalis it’s a whole different matter! But I survived and the next morning as I trudged around my mud pit, surveying the scene and soaking up the tranquillity, I thought to myself, this really is heaven.
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Saturday, July 12, 2014
You may recall that my friend Rosey and I share the same birthday; a couple of days ago in fact. Well I was speaking to her a few minutes ago and when I asked her what she did on our big day, she told me she decided to create a bucket list. I asked her what she put on it and she said that only made the decision to do it, and that she hadn't actually done it because she can’t think what to put on it! “Apart from one thing” she said. As no further information was forthcoming I ventured to ask what the ‘thing’ was and she said “Buy a bucket”. So I asked her why she wanted a bucket and she said it was to put her list in. I pointed out that it was only called a bucket list because…then I stopped because it occurred to me that I didn't have a clue!
So I went on to ask her why she needed buy a new bucket when she’s got a perfectly good one down at her allotment. “Two reason” she said. “Firstly there’s a hole in my bucket”. “Dear Liza dear Liza” I sang out, and I got one her quizzical looks in response. “Yes” she said “I've got a hole in my shed roof too and put my bucket on the floor to catch the drips and when I went back the next day the bucket was empty and the floor was wet. That’s how I know I've got a hole in my bucket”. “Dear Liza dear……” I started. She stopped me in my tracks. “You've got a whole lot of holes going on” I said.
She seemed to ignore my remark and went on to tell me that she wanted a bucket with pink roses on it. I asked why and she said “Duh”. Clearly I was missing something. “Pink roses. Rosey Pinkerton. Get it?” “Got it” “Good”
“About the list” I said.” Have you got any ideas?” She said she would quite like to learn golf. “And get a hole in one!” I quipped making a reference to our earlier discussion. She said she would like to dress as a man for a day and go to a gent’s loo! “And maybe one day go into space” she said. “Just be careful you don’t fly into a black hole!” I said. My remark got the silent treatment so I put on my serious face and suggested that a few of us should meet up at The Bicycle Arms for a brainstorming session and that’s what we’ll probably do next weekend.
Suddenly she remembered a joke about a hole. As I've told you before, when she tells a joke she often doesn't understand it herself which makes it all the funnier for the assembled audience. This one however she seems to have got as she giggled all the way through it. She said “A man walked past a hole in a wall. He heard a voice going ‘Eight eight eight….’ He looked through the hole to see where the voice was coming from and got a poke in the eye. ‘Nine nine nine…’said the voice.
To read more about My Friend Rosey click on pic!
To read more about My Friend Rosey click on pic!
Labels: my friend Rosey
Tuesday, July 08, 2014
Sunday, July 06, 2014
I wrote this for The Sunday Whirl.
No one saw him, but then very few people did. Not during the past few years. Ebenezer Drewett watched from the back of the Ancient Chapel as Father Flaggarty wandered this way and that, his arms piled high with prayer and hymn books laying them on the pews in anticipation of the arrival of the Faithful Few. He lit the lone candle at the centre of the simple alter, crossed himself then reached inside his cassock for his cigarettes. Just time for a quick one before once again carrying out the mission he was entrusted with.
Ebenezer Drewett watched from the back of the Ancient Chapel as the Faithful Few meandered in, pecking one another on the cheek and exchanging hushed pleasantries. Florence ‘Muddy’ Waters, James ‘Boozer’ Butterfield, Tommy ‘Two-timer’ Taylor and John the Wobbler. Here they all come he thought to himself. He smiled as the nicknames they’d been given in the past floated back into his mind. It was all so long ago.
Mrs Simmington started playing the wheezing organ; too loudly at first startling the Faithful Few. There was a green hill far away they sang in differing keys at varying levels of volume. Ebenezer Drewett shook his head as he remembered all the deeds they needed to pray for in the hope of eternal salvation should such a thing exist. Hypocrites the lot of them.
‘The Blood of Christ’whispered Father Flaggarty as he administered the blessed wine to each of the kneeling Faithful Few. James Butterfield was looking forward to something a little stronger, and Tommy Taylor offered up a silent prayer in the hope of sometime soon gaining the affection of Miriam Ramsbottom who knelt meekly beside him. They had no idea that Ebenezer Drewett had discovered all their secrets. How could they?
‘In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost’ said Father Flaggarty. ‘Amen’ muttered the Faithful Few before wandering off.
Ebenezer Drewett stayed unseen at back of the Ancient Chapel until it was empty. The last sound he heard was the clonk of the weatherbeaten door as Father Flaggarty headed off to the Inn.
When Ebenezer Drewett went outside into the falling rain he could just make out the image of an Old Woman sitting cross-legged beside a gravestone. He moved towards her. She wore a ragged grey cape, and a white stick rested on her lap. As he approached, the Old Woman slowly turned her head towards him. Her face was as grey as the gravestone and her eyes little more than empty sockets. 'But nobody sees me' said Ebenezer Drewett 'and in any case Old Woman you are blind'. Her bony fingers started feeling the carved out lettering on the crooked headstone. ‘Ebenezer Drewett RIP’ it spelt. ‘You shouldn't be here' the Old Woman said. 'You don't deserve to Rest In Peace'. With that her eyes began to glow blood red. She slowly raised herself up and took Ebenezer Drewett by the hand. ‘Come with me’ the Old Woman said. ‘You don’t belong here. Leave them be’. That was the last time Ebenezer Drewett ever went to the Ancient Chapel.
Saturday, July 05, 2014
Written for Sunday Scribblings 2
'Reach for your dreams’ the voice in her head whispered. ‘Reach, just reach, and one day soon you will achieve all you desire’.
She wandered in the meadow, the long grass caressing her feet. ‘Reach for the sun and cast aside the clouds’ the unseen voice murmured. All around, butterflies danced and birds whistled sweet melodies. A waterfall splashed a thousand sparkling crystals into the air, and the warm breeze raised the slender branches of a tree and it's leaves pointed skyward. Her heart was filled with blissful hope. She reached higher and higher, hands held open in eager anticipation. ‘Reach high, reach far, and you shall reach paradise’ the unseen voice breathed. The suns’ warm rays kissed her palms. Then she tripped on a rock, fell and broke her arm. ‘Woops’ the unseen voice sighed.