Tickets, passport, money

There was a slight air of panic when we couldn’t find the large suitcases (they were in the loft), but I’m about to go upstairs to pack.

That should take three minutes.

I’ve downloaded some stuff to my tablet, I’ve got a lot of books, and I’ll also take my Kindle.

Dresscode for the week will largely consist of long shorts, t-shirts, and anti-antiperspirant.

And comfortable walking shoes, obv.

After two long-haul flights tomorrow, we will be here:



Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things

We are watching Game of Thrones (or GoT as we cognoscenti call it).

Well yes, we’re only on S1 E4, but that’s hardly the point.


It’s all gone a bit Pete Tong.

Sean Bean has a big book to read, his wife is on a walkabout and has just accused a dwarf of plotting to kill her son (I don’t think he did, I believe he has been framed), the lad with the broken back dreamed about a three-eyed crow, Daenerys Targaryen has just beaten up her brother (who we all hope will come to a very sticky end very soon), and everyone else seems to be shagging in the whorehouse down the road.

Frankly it’s all a bit too much.

I can’t even remember the names of half the cast of characters.

I’m sure at some stage or other it will all start to coalesce, and make perfect sense.

It just hasn’t started to yet.

Is it me?

Doggy tales

We have new bicycles!

Sam uses hers to occasionally commute to work, but apart from a very brief lap of the neighbourhood, I haven’t used mine yet.


Young Masher is prone to flashing his bitch around, because he knows I am jealous of him and his canine friend.

Don’t get me wrong, I love our cats; they have made the house in to an even more homely place (if that’s believable).

But what my heart is hankering for is a dog.

A four-legged friend who I can train in the useful skills, such as making a nice cup of tea, sending down the village shop for a bag of sweets (or biscuits). That kind of thing.

And walks. Which may include me on my bike and the dog doing the walking.

Of course, I’ve had dogs before so I know the probable reality of the situation.

Dog doing what it wants to do, when it wants to do it. And not doing what I want it to do for most of the time.

The time isn’t right for us to go down the doggy path just yet.

But I can live in my little fantasy world just a little longer.

But one day, my friend, this could be me… Erm.



And relax…

Be it ever so humble, there is no place like home.

Within 35 minutes of landing back at base, from the frozen wastes of Brighton, I had the fire roaring away, the family had decided on pizza for tea, and Sam had sorted out a Brendon Fraser film for us to watch whilst consuming the aforementioned Italian fast food.

Being home is fantastic.

I enjoyed being away. I got a good haircut and beard-trim. I tried on and decided to buy an outrageously snazzy (and most unlike my normal style of) three-piece suit. I had a fantastic time in the sauna which, I am convinced, did me more good than the rest of the three days we had down there put together.

But stone me it was freezing; much colder down there than up here.

I know we are due for a big Siberian freeze (Huge Norm, or some such meteorological name), but them southerners can keep their bloody cold weather, thank you very much.

The party revellers (of which there were a few walking past the seafront at 2am today), sounded loud and boozed up. And it was -3c out there at that time.


What’s the matter with these people?

Speaking of the matter with people…

In the open pedestrian walkway, opposite our hotel, a rough-sleeper (which is what we now call homeless people, apparently, because the phrase ‘rough-sleeper’ doesn’t have the same negativity for politicians that the words ‘homeless on your watch’ do), shivered in a sleeping bag and a duvet.

It cost me £60 to park the car in a warm and cosy underground car park for three days.

That money goes to the Local Authority, who run that car park.

Frankly I would rather have parked the car out on the road and given that £60 to the rough-sleeper.

But the Local Authority doesn’t allow parking out on the road in Brighton.

It’s too unsightly, perhaps?

But not as unsightly as a homeless person shivering in a walkway by a car park.

When it’s -3c at night.

So yes, it’s lovely being home.

But right now, I have a nasty taste in the back of my mouth, and it’s nothing to do with the pizza we had earlier.

Bookses, my precious



In a tiny alleyway in The Lanes in Brighton, I stumbled upon a Treasure Trove of book-related goodness.

I became a fan of PKDs writing (and imagination) in my early teens.

The fact that his work continues to be so enduring, decades after his death, speaks volumes for the scope and scale of his imagination.

Season 2 of The Man In The High Castle is due to start soon.

I’m looking forward to seeing that exactly the same amount as I am keen to see Bladerunner 2049.

We are in Brighton!

Bed view

If the photo needs mucking about with, I’ll do it when I get home. The phone is a less than perfect tool for this kind of stuff.

This morning, after breakfast, we all (five of us) went out for a local wander about.

It was beyond freezing.

After a couple of hours, I sloped back to the hotel and spent time being very unwell.

My cold and flu symptoms are showing signs of being beaten.

But a return to liquid tummy is very unwelcome.

Everyone else has been out for most of the day. I’m jealous.

But I hope that tomorrow will be a much better day for me.

Mobile, innit

As I type this I am in a car.

It is Wednesday evening, just gone 19.15, and we are speeding (in a not breaking the law kind of way) down the M1

For we are on a road trip!

It’s going to take about another two and a half hours to reach our destination.

We are all very excited.

I might have a small doze, to contain my excitement.

There are two girls in the back seat, jointly listening to Little Mix on shared ear buds.

They are singing. Aloud. To Little Mix.

My cup is actually running over.

Not quite right

I don’t want you to think I’ve run out of imagination or owt, but the only thing I have to blog about is my health. Or lack thereof.

I could tell you about my fun-filled first day back at work, but you really wouldn’t believe what I could relay.

Maybe I’ll save that. For another time.


For the last few hours I have been alternating between heavy dozing and attempting to cough up a lung.

There was a while, about ten minutes ago, when I thought I had achieved lung removal. I am happy to report that both lungs, and a considerable amount of snot, still live inside me.

Taunting me with their continued existence.

It’s likely that I shall sleep alone tonight. And frankly who couldn’t see that coming?

Even in another bedroom I’ll probably disturb all sleep in the house.

Even the cats have moved out of the bedroom.

Can’t blame them either.

Even the teenaged son of our neighbour, who seems to spend every single evening SHOUTING AT THE TOP OF HIS VOICE into a mobile phone, at his friend(s), hasn’t stuck his head above the parapet this evening.

I’m really over this whole being unwell chapter now. I just want to return to healthy.


I enjoy a bit of a quiz.

Monday evenings tend to have a lump of frenetic mental energy from 8-9pm. Only Connect followed by Universally Challenged University Challenge.

I can usually get a few (maybe ten or more) UC ‘starter’ questions, and do fairly well on the follow-on questions.

But Only Connect has a very healthy record of making me feel inadequate. Sometimes I don’t even understand the questions.

While UC can leave me feeling a bit smug at times, Only Connect just leaves me frustrated.

*pauses to consider how I seem to be lining myself up for a part in The Detectorists*

There was just a question on Only Connect where the answer was ‘Airport Terminals’ and frankly I didn’t see that answer coming.

Must have been foggy, obv.

Anyway, that Victoria Coren Mitchell is a bit of a bright smartypants.

I’ve just googled her. Professional poker player, no less.

Roll on University Challenge. At least then I can get some self-esteem back.