Saturday, 29 January 2011

Back in Ole Blighty

Back in old blighty and its cold!  Having spent almost 10 days in Malaysia at 30 Deg C every day just a touch chilly! I think its Saturday having been in a moronic state since I flew into Birmingham on Thursday evening and was met by the coldest wind when I came out of the terminal building! Talk about coming down to earth with a bump - oh cruel, cruel wind!!  The baggage claim took almost an hour, somebody's bag had contained some highly spiced liquid in a jar or somesuch. Said object had obviously broken in transit and the air around the baggage travellator reeked with very strong curry odour.  Bet the bag owners on the tavellator next to said contaminated baggage weren't too chuffed their bags were also contaminated - thankfully mine escaped the smell of Asia because it was one of the last to come off the travellator every cloud has a silver lining - hence my prolonged wait. 

Since then I've been like a zombie come mid-day, trying to go to bed at the right time impossible because falling asleep in the most inconvenient circumstances. Finally sleeping O.K. but habitually waking up at 2. a.m. raring to go with nowhere to go to - except falling back into bed, trying to act like a normal GMT sleeper whatever one of those may be, but pretty darned impossible when my brain and body is still living and working on Malay time. The millionaire assures me that eventually all will return to normal.  I hope so otherwise today I'll be shopping and falling asleep at the checkout not even remembering why I'm stood there!!  Ah well back to normality and off to work this morning I just hope my eyelids stay in the upward position otherwise could be very embarrassing this morning!!

Monday, 24 January 2011

Work in KL

Actually did some work today and achieved much.  Very busy schedule changing throughout the day and met some really important folks it appears and visited their posh establishments - obviously prospering.  One of the offices has a games room for the staff, executive bathrooms for the management team as well as individual bathrooms (not just your bog-standard - pardon the pun - loo) for their staff comprising of executive showers, bidet units and so on!!  Guess Malaysia is the up and coming place to be right now!!

Mind you everyone drives everywhere in KL (its too humid to walk apparently) so the traffic is an absolute nightmare - England's traffic chaos is nothing compared to over here!!  Everyone drives how they like and signalling is an afterthought - just glad I was a passenger and kept my eyes closed when an imminent disaster approached!!  We are a very civilised nation by comparison it appears with driving etiquette - mind you I haven't yet seen one road rage episode over here which says something about the Malay drivers it has to be said!!

As I write this the Muslims are being called to prayer over the tannoy just across from my hotel.  Its kind of haunting in a way, but strangely calming - just wish I knew what he was saying.  He calls them to prayer about 3 times a day, I'm getting used to it now, something we just don't hear in the U.K. More work tomorrow so going to bed on a prayer it would seem now blogging off.

Sunday, 23 January 2011

KL Delights Part 2

Consisted of a city bus tour & savouring the delights of the city I'd not yet seen & there were many!

At the start of the trip I thought they'd rolled out the red carpet for me, the police escort were standing guard and then the special detectives pulled up.  I finally guessed this was a little over the top for me, a humble working lady, when the Prime Minister of Malaysia appeared with his entourage because I felt sure they hadn't turned out for me at the same bus stop!!  Ah well just get on the Hop-on Hop-Off bus instead its less conspicuous anyway!!
He's the guy with the flowing skirt on in the middle!
I got off the bus at the KL bird park.  Its the World's largest Free-flight Walk-in Aviary and what a thrill that was.  I walked (and was used as a roosting post on occasions) through the most interesting bird filled gardens I've ever seen. It's home to 3,000 birds both local & foreign absolutely fascinating.  You walk amongst them they come and perch on your shoulder and they will pinch your lunch if you're not careful!! 
3 Birds!!

My lunch mate!
After spending a good 3 hours in the aviary gardens, moved on to the national orchid gardens swiftly followed by the butterfly garden.  It was hot, humid and lovely warm rain and I enjoyed every minute of it.  Back to reality - no more play now just work all next week!!

Check out the brown leaf its the underside of a butterfly!

Bet you said "wonder what it looks like with it's wings open - well its the big guy top left!

One of nature's finest!

Saturday, 22 January 2011

The delights of KL

Lord Murugan Statue Batu Caves
Entrance to China Town
Some of my steamed breakfast just a few of several dishes we consumed!
My student friends who spoilt me today with me!
Chinese Temple with Chinese New Year Lanterns

KL in the evening from the hill top restaurant.

The delights of KL (as pictured)
are:  meeting up with student friends and having a really great day!
Well I think its a delight but my over-filled stomach has other ideas having tried Malay, Chinese, Indian & finally Western - couldn't eat another mouthful if I tried!
Experiencing the natural beauty in a forest park.
Looking out over this beautiful city both day and by night from a hill top restaurant and enjoying the company.
Visiting the Batu Caves climbing the 272 steps and seeing the Indian culture presenting their offerings to the 140 foot high Lord Murugan statue (although the smell in the caves is one I wouldn't relish returning to!).

Anyone lost a tortoise??
 Visiting China Town & a beautiful Chinese temple festooned with red lanterns for the Chinese New Year and its gardens with a tortoise (well terrapins really) how many??? pool. (Pic only shows one side of the pool there were twice as many on the other side!)

Finally returning to my room to have a steaming hot bath - absolute bliss!!

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Malaysia morning & night before!!

Morning in Malaysia

Gosh how lucky am I?? Don' want to brag or anything just sharing a good thing with you. Fabulous views from my room, 30 deg C today and a breakfast to die for this morning - more food available than I could ever have imagined.  A shower room big enough to hold a party in -  mind boggles !! Short lived as it is I have to begin work this afternoon but what a way to go to work.  Aint complaining I love my job!! 

A few pics to share just to make you green with envy!! Petroneas Towers by night and day view from my room and the moonrise shots I spoke about in my last blog oh and one from the onboard screen to prove I am really here !! Sorry forgot to turn some around so you're gonna have to turn your head sideways - will do better next time!! Only sad thing about all of this is that this all used to be Tropical Rain Forest and compared to how much is left and the tower blocks I'm surrounded by - give me the rain forest any day.  I just hope this country wakes up before any more of it is lost forever.

Now to work.

In Malaysia

Well here but not sure what day or time it is??  I think it may be Thursday now over here but still Wednesday over there!!  I can't believe just how lucky I am.  Flew with Emirates and what a treat that was so stuffed with food don't want to eat for a week.  Bags of room and actually very happy cabin staff who just can't seem to do enough for you.  Stopping off at Dubai Airport for transfer what a jaw dropping experience that was - I've never seen anything like it.  Every possible shop you could imagine and designer to boot you need a day at the airport just to look around all the shops unfortunately I only had 3 hours but I was good and didn't spend any money - not yet - there's still the return stop off of 3 hours - wonder if I can hang on to my pennies or should I say millions long enough to shop there on the way back?? To top it all off I have this fabulous hotel room big enough for 10 and a bathroom to die for!!  Shame I haven't got the millionaire (hubby) to share it with.  My room view of the wondrous Petronas Towers at night is a sight to behold, absolutely stunning and only a couple of hundred yards from my room!!  But totally exhausted now and don't know whether to try to sleep or sit up all night or is it day?  I think its about 4.30 over there in the U.K. and its 12.30 p.m here but I'm so wide awake don't think I'll get a sleep.  Think I'll raid the bar 'fridge there's everything in it!!

Tomorrow well I think it'll be tomorrow I'll download or is it upload some stunning photos I took from the aircraft of the moon rise - absolutely breathtaking!!  Nite nite or is it good morning??

Monday, 17 January 2011

Grandma Ventures out

Tomorrow I fly out to Malaysia on my first official business trip for 10 days.  Mixed feelings, concern, long trip 12 hour flight on my own, excited at visiting another new country, grateful for a boss who has the faith in me to trust that I will do a good job and a hubby (the millionare) who gives me the courage & support to know that I can do it - on my own! How lucky am I?

With thoughts of Bridgett Jones The Edge of Reason I must remember NOT to accept nice presents for me to bring home.  I don't think I could come off so lightly as Bridgett & definitely will not be sporting a black bra which may buy me fags in return whilst in Gaol - I don't smoke for a start!!

There are lots of things about this modern world I'm not so chuffed about, but lots of things I'm grateful for too. At my time of life (almost 60) to be able to take advantage of such an opportunity is something I would never have thought possible as a child or an adult.  As we often say "You never know what's around the corner".  2 years ago at this time, I was out of work with no vision of where, when or if I would get a job again at my time of life.  So never, never, ever give up, fate has many things in store for us - we just need to be patient and count our blessings!! 

Whether I'll be able to catch up on this blog is another adventure for me, so wait with baited breath dear readers and see what happens - because I have'nt got a clue!!

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Grandma & fashion "gear"

"Is it me" how many times have I asked that question when I've had a frustrating day clothes shopping!  Now I'm not a frumpy sort of grandma bordering on 12/14 size, not obese and definitely not stick thin - so why are all the clothes in just about every shop I went into yesterday geared for those sorts of shapes??

Upon spying a very smart pleated skirt number along with matching jacket, blouse etc., and making a beeline for the article, I was very disappointed that said skirt was only about 10 inches in depth. Most definitely in the "brief" market i.e. one step too far and nothing but the best rear end clad in a suitable thong (I would guess this is what the designer had in mind)would be revealed & suited to such a lovely skirt - how sick am I??  The range was just what I had in mind, so why don't they supply this line with a range of skirt lengths to suit the customer i.e. pelmet length (as in this case), knee length or calf length either of which I could have got away with and looked as equally smart as the female clad in the pelmet!! 

I move on to other shops in the vain hope that I will eventually come across something.  I'm not fussy, just something classy, modern, feminine and fashionable.  Where are the dresses these days why does everything have to be trousers, cut-offs, skirts (all too small and cut too fine or so loose they look like a tent on me) and blouses or jackets with un-even hems that look like someone has made a mistake on the machine!!  Even your average pair of jeans cannot be found anymore, skinny fit (not at all suitable for someone with nice shapely legs because you can't even get them past your ankles!!)  and the zip so darned small & fiddly you mustn't have any tummy at all because your skin is in danger of getting caught in it!!; they either have ironed-in wrinkles, which you have be sure you don't iron out (so why bother to put them there in the first place is beyond me), have designer tears or holes in them or faded patches where you definitely wouldn't want them to look faded!!  Not only that you have to take out a mortgage to buy some of this gear!! 

Today I'm definitely a grumpy old woman.  If anyone (which I sincerely doubt) in the fashion industry would deem to read this blog please, please, please bring out a range of clothes that your "average woman about town who is a grandma or just a normal curvy shape" can wear and squeal with delight over because she is spoilt for choice.  I would love to have a nice fashionable (not frumpy dress covered with buttons, frills and all manner of sparkly bits) dress that fits in all the right places and shows my figure off to its best advantage, or a good classy skirt that also fits in the right places  & is neither so short it shows off my knickers which are definitely not thong shaped at my time of life nor so long it makes me look like a I'm still trying to grow up.  A blouse that the buttons don't pop off of the first time I wear it or bust darts that are completely in the wrong place for a woman who is trying to uplift her chest not emphasise the inevitable sagging that comes with age!!

Please let's have some factories back in the U.K. that can make good quality clothes that fit the average European woman at a reasonable price.  Not all these foreign imports that are obviously made from a petite population where the shoe size is not right, the clothes size is not right and they fall apart after the first wearing!!  Please someone HELP us before its too late!!! 

Now I can go about my chores with a vengeance having gotten that off me chest - mind you it still doesn't help that fact that I never got any of the clothes I was looking for and I shall have to repeat the exercise yet again!!  Oh perish the thought I may never go into another fashion store again - hooray!!

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Gizmo, Geek & Grandma Part 2

Well the day dawned and on getting into work I switched on the computer and uh what's this??  In the bottom corner of my "desktop" screen (see I'm getting the lingo!!)  low & behold are 3 little bubbles with pictures on them and my computer is -  wait for it - talking to me and asks "do you want to scan" - where the hell did that come from?  No wait, its got to be something to do with the new scanner and the instructions that were "down" or was it "up" loaded yesterday?  Stupidly I talk back - (even more embarrassingly) - out loud - and say "no thanks".  What on earth am I doing talking to a machine - get a grip grandma for goodness sake!! Thankfully it didn't reply - I would have been really spooked!!  Thank goodness no one else was in the office at the time, so I shuffle a few papers and hit the escape key to stop "it" asking me questions!!

I finally pluck up the courage to try out said new scanner, carefully placing test copy on the glass after plugging the connector into the computer server (got that too now -  my I'm getting good at this) - but hang on a minute where's the plug for the scanner?  I search high and low.  Resorting to aforementioned Enclopaedia Britannica alias the manual (purely because I don't want to appear any more stupid than I already am by asking The Geek where's the plug!!) and finally after some time searching through said manual to find the basic page i.e. what bits should be in the box it came in - I discover there is no plug!  How the hell does it work I ask myself with no electrickery to power it??  Even more PDF (if you remember Pretty Darned Foolish) today!!  Still just try it by using the only lead that's here!  I press the PDF button as instructed yesterday (the only one I feel safe pressing at the moment) and guess what?  There is this almost indetectible swish and bravissimo a picture appears on my screen - upside down mind you - but there it is!!  So thanks for all of those kind readers - if I have any who carried out said prayer request and presented me with my first picture on my new scanner - couldn't have done it without you!!

I congratulate myself on a task excellently carried out and set about saving said document - just in case!!  New technology is a wonderful thing - but just how does it work without electrickery?  I just can't grasp that yet at all - don't think I'll venture down that route at this early stage!!

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Gizmo, Geek & Grandma! - Part 1

I've just had a new scanner installed at work - my other dinosaur finally gave up the ghost before Christmas at last.  The "IT" "Geek" came to install it for me after it had been "PAT" tested, he installed it with the "Disc Drive" in "the Driver" I think, asked if I used "PDF" mode and demonstrated its capabilities whilst talking to his IT colleague about Ipods, iBusinesses, Blue Tooths, Blu-rays, Adobe ......... lah di dah di dah!!

I sit amongst all this and wonder what the hell is this world coming to - have I missed out on a bit of my English lesson or have we developed another language and someone forgot to tell me about it?? 

When I was at school, PAT was a boy or girl's name or something you did when you indicated your lap was safe for the cat to sit on with a gentle pat on the lap; Disc Drive - well never invented actually although it reminded me of times in my youth when someone was a bit tipsy and said "Disc" followed by a loud hiccough instead of  the word "Disco" which we were driving to on the back of a scooter; "the driver" well self-explanatory he or she was the person who got us to the Disco wasn't quite so tipsy as the rest of us and the only one who wasn't seeing double, thus just about capable of doing the driving; PDF - well I could only think of Pretty Darned Foolish - which is what I'm feeling now because I haven't got a clue what this new language is all about!! Where does that leave "Ipod, iBusinesses, Blue Tooth - well I have'nt got one in my mouth I'm glad to say - just a nice new white one, Blu-ray - can't imagine only memories of Stingray and the wonderful puppetry that I watched (along with the children of course!!) spring to mind, Adobe - well that's easy - isn't that Spanish or Mexican or something for somewhere to live??

The Geek is enthusiastic about my new scanner demonstrating all it's capabilities in full, graphic detail complete with IT language - and leaves me - well - no better off than when he took it out of its box!!  He's left me with a manual to read so I can get to grips with it should I have any problems!!  Manual - well its more like the Encyclopaedia Britannica!!  I stare at the machine and the Manual of several 100 pages - oh Lordy - all I want is to be able to produce copies of papers for my boss and email (I get this word now) them!!  I'm loathe to press any of the buttons in case it goes into overdrive or whatever it is but press I must.  Suddenly I'm missing my old dinosaur scanner and a deep sense of grief has befallen me.  Ah well Grandma - not long 'til retirement - just grit your teeth and see what comes up on the screen - fingers crossed its the paperwork I put on the glass for scanning - if not I may have to consult the Geek - no that's a fate worse than death itself!!  I wouldn't mind but the Geek bless him, is younger than my son - was he born with this knowledge? - I need to catch up big time - actually don't think I'll bother, I like being un-IT-initiated - you know normal!! Please say a prayer for me and I'll let you know if it worked - later!!!

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Countryfile, Countryside & Camera

Does anyone else out there watch Countryfile?  What a great programme that is filled with snippets of information I never knew, like how many rare breeds of cattle there are, how poultry farmers are under threat from EU regs.,  new nature reserves being set up right beside one of the busiest motorways in Lancashire and what migrating swans eat in the Winter - potatoes of all things!!  Adam one of the presenters of the programme is the farmer breeding rare cattle and we got drawn into the vet's testing of his cattle herds for bovine TB.  The anxt we felt on his behalf when one of his herds were found to have the rotten disease now preventing him from selling the cattle for the breeding programme and only good for slaughter - all that love, dedication and financial loss - we don't know half what some of our farmers have to put up with.  If you're a nature lover good to watch this and learn!! 

Then on taking the dog for his walk, once again thanked my lucky stars for the world in which we live, the countryside I'm able to see and the company I'm with namely The Millionaire, No. 1 son and of course the dog - who has a mind of his own - no matter what commands he's given!  Fantastic moonlight, sunsets (forgot the camera AGAIN - oh but what joy discovered on fishing the camera out when I got in that it has special functions for Sunsets, Moonlight, Flower and Snow shots - all the things I take in abundance and didn't even know it had those functions, teach me not to read the mammoth instruction book - doh all those shots of these latest snowfalls, eclipses and sunsets agh!!!! )

Thankful for living in this part of the U.K. very underestimated & taken for granted by many - no I'm not saying where it is - don't want it changed - like it just the way it is!!

Painter or Pet carer?

A day of decisions with lots to do and not enough time to do it all in - no change there then?? Apart from the usual chores which didn't warrant a decision - just must do's unfortunately interfering with a precious weekend!!  When faced with the choice of starting a long overdue new picture or carrying out the usual clean of the budgie's cages - unfortunately the budgies lost!!  I apologised to them with the promise of carrying the said task out later - they responded vociferally as usual and chirruped that it was O.K. and prepared to wait just a little longer for said clean cage apartments - I bribed them both with a new well stuffed millet seed spray which they seemed more than happy to accept as compensation for said delay and tucked in whilst I began the long overdue painting - several months overdue in fact!  Moments later whilst embarking on said painting I realised I'd forgotten everything I'd been taught already by the professional art tutor at the great residential art course I attended back in July - (given to me as a Christmas present last year by "The Millionaire" alias hubby). Scratting around for my notes from the course I found them at last and berated myself for not checking the notes before starting the painting. I'd forgotten the basics but undaunted I carried on and rectified my earlier mistakes - made in earnest because I was too eager to begin my most favourite hobby.  The course had taught me the basics of impressionist style particularly Edward Seago and how to complete a full oil painting in an hour and a half!!  Nearly 3 hours later I'd achieved something akin to the picture I was attempting to emulate but nowhere near finished!!  I'm reminded of my tutor who said he and his partner - a water colourist - try to paint something at least every day to get to the standard he aspired - and was still aspiring to!!  Lordy I've got a lot of painting to do if my New Year's resolution is to come to pass!!  I guess diligence to the task will pay off - one day an "after Seago style" painted by an anonymous artist may appear on the Antiques Roadshow and realise a fantastic sum - in your dreams sunshine - but persevere nevertheless - one never knows!!!!

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Wii Anxt

Trying to get to grips with the Wii craze is I thought supposed to be fun!!  Having attempted various forms of Mario exploits I'm wondering how my family have become such experts - not least my 9 year old grandson JB to name one and No.1 son!  Signs of a very misspent youth perhaps??  Or just IT expertise that seems to come naturally to the next generation. 

I dwell on the days of my youth when I spent many a happy hour building dens and then playing some imaginary game with all my mates who lived on my Close - such simple pleasures!!  We built dens in chalk pit cliff faces (somewhere where we were absolutely forbidden to go of course - but made all the more exciting because we ignored our parents & did it anyway!!) with a hole in the roof to let the smoke out for when we built a fire in the den and cooked toast on a stick over the fire which always got burnt because we put the bread too close to the flames or it got covered in soot because the fire was too smokey - but it was the bestest toast ever!!  None of this twisting and gyrating with a plastic rubber covered hand gizmo which never seems to do what I'm telling it to do - and I'm sure my controller is not working properly - or why else would Luigi keep getting his backside burned in the lava?? Hey ho - got the pants beaten off me again by No. 1 son and The millionaire coming a close 2nd or was it 3rd!  Who cares - I think I'll go and build a den somewhere - at least I know I'm in control then - and my toast will be far better than theirs - in fact they probably wouldn't even know how to build a fire with just leaves, paper and sticks and some spent matches!!  Now who's in control eh!!!  Age does have its compensations after all!!  Sucks boo to you lot I'm going off to burn & enjoy my toast!!

Friday, 7 January 2011

Winter's Walk View

Another piccy to pour over and one I'm going to paint - one of my hobbies oil painting - enjoy

Sun rise

As promised pic attached of sunrise from my window - how lucky am I to be blessed with such glorious sights each morning.  The darker ones are of the partial eclipse this week although I could see it my camera was too far away to pick it up - incidentally the white dots in shot are of the snow which also began to fall at the same time!!  How bizarre - a partial eclipse on a Wintry morning early in the New Year 2011 accompanied by the first snow of 2011!!  Nature - still a mystery - and long may it continue!!

Twelth Night

On this day (i.e. 6th January not today as I write!!)  37 years ago I was delivered of a baby girl at 6.50 p.m. in the evening.  She was late and should have been born 25th December but decided to make it 12th night instead - luckily for me otherwise all my Christmasses up until the present day would have been decidely more expensive!!  JG as she is now is married and has offspring of her own and I spent the day with JG yesterday to try to cheer her up.  Big Guy (her hubby) was away working (who incidentally did'nt ring until very late on in the morning to wish her a Happy Birthday - something JG was not too chuffed over - that's men for ya!!) she was at work herself in the afternoon and her offspring all at school.  Decided it wasn't going to be a good day for her so ventured up to the frozen North to make her day a little bit more interesting and less "worklike".  Think we pulled it off, the kids had a great time planning the surprise tea for when she got in  - even though I had sworn the youngest at the tender age of 3 to secrecy who then promptly told mummy that we were planning a surprise tea when she came home from work and she wasn't supposed to know about it "cos it was a secret mummy"!!  Doh grandma for letting AG toddler in on the secret - you'd think after all these years I would have known better wouldn't you??

Singing candles, mummy's favourite foods & drinks, surprise presents and spray string all led to Mummy's tea party - which she recalled - she could'nt remember the last time she had had a birthday tea for herself, as she had spent the last few years arranging birthday teas for her offspring.  I don't know who had the most fun, me and her offspring or Mummy herself.  All round I think JG's 37th birthday was a bit of a different occasion and one, one hopes she will look back on with fondness and smile about.

When I recall that little bundle - well not so little at 9 lbs. 2 ozs in my arms - I am amazed at where all those years have gone and what has happened in that time.  It's incredible to recall - so very much has happened.  I married had children, divorced, re-married and gave birth again, lived in different parts of the country, met oh so many people, have had different jobs and visited so many countries throughout the world on fantastic holidays both with and without family.  Loads of natural disasters, Mobile phones, the internet, Cameras everywhere we go, Live Aid, Children in Need, Wars - STILL - Afghanistan (well not new at all that is it??), Falklands, Iran/Iraq, Ipods, computer linked TV, phones and games we play with together on the tele the same as the board games we all played.  Space station, Google Maps & Google Earth - and the ability to write this blog  - all things that are now at my fingertips that weren't 37 years ago the list is ever-growing - just absolutely amazing!!  And have you seen that latest robot on the tele recently - scary or what - just too much like a human being to be comfortable around - George Orwell - would be saying now - "See I told you so!!" and wouldn't be far wrong - look out Commuter Space travel only a whisper away now!!

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Sun & Moon

In my lifetime over this last month I've been blessed to see a lunar eclipse and a partial eclipse of the sun this morning - just before the snow started to fall again!!  I watched the sun come up once again and Mother Nature never ceases to amaze me with beautiful skies night and day.  If only everyone took time out from their day - only 10 - 15 minutes to watch these daily cycles taking place, sun, moon and the stars - how more appreciative of the world around them they may be.  God bless mother nature and thanks for the gift of eyesight - one of the senses I for one all too often take for granted!!

FOOTNOTE - 5th January 2011
This was drafted yesterday and I was hoping to add a picture of said solar eclipse but not clear enough to publish.  However will add some other glorious sun shots soon to accentuate my thanks to Mother Nature and for those of you to look at when you don't have time to in your busy day.

The wonder of science dentristy - part 2

The miracle continues with me venturing into the Dentist technicians workshop this morning and offered a plaster-splattered seat (dry thankfully) whilst he built me a new tooth!!  I gazed around at the bunsen burner roaring away on the desk and mused if this was for my benefit or just to heat the room!!  If it was for my benefit not sure I was going to stay as visions of the Demon Dentist played around in my head and where he might place the said bunsen burner flame - didn't bear thinking about - but he looked too nice to be a demon dentist - but one should never be fooled by appearances!!  I decided I'd stay put at least for a little while.

He placed some horrible moulding stuff on a temporary plate into my mouth and assured me it would only take a few seconds whilst he prodded and poked the mould to see if it had set!!  My mouth felt like it was stuffed with a McDonalds McFlurry only harder and nowhere near so pleasant to the palette!!  I could feel the mould setting and had visions that my entire topset would come away with it - meet Grandma the new toothless wonder!!  Not a pretty sight.  He then set about building me a new tooth out of all sorts of strange looking powders and within 30 minutes there it was in place all shiny and new and here was the Grandma with a complete set of teeth once again - even matching up the colour with my original teeth to make sure it didn't look obviously different - ah what joy!!  Now I could kiss my family members without the embarrassment of having to pucker up a lip that would sink into a black hole where a tooth used to be!  I'm sure everyone would have noticed the difference - not!!

Within 30 minutes all was done, dusted and paid for.  I am still thankful for this 21st century and the wonders of modern science.  To be able to go and have such treatment, efficiently, speedily and relatively cheaply is something I needed to remind myself of.  Here in the U.K. we bemoan our NHS and medical treatment generally but we are so much better off than the rest of the world in this aspect that this morning I have had once again to count my blessings.  I was reminded of this too at lunchtime today when I could eat properly once again without half of my delightful luncheon disappearing into a cavity without having to fish it out with toothpicks or another suitable implement that would do the job that one's teeth usually does.  My goodness don't we take our teeth for granted and glad to say I've got one back again.  Thanks Mr. Dentist technician - not at all a Demon!!

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

The wonder of science dentristy

Having swallowed a noticeable front tooth whilst enjoying the delights of a tropical fruit & nut selection over the Christmas period (not realising I was swallowing my tooth and not just a tough nut!!), I have to make efforts to replace the toothless smile with a "toothfull" smile!!  I visited a dental technician today with some trepidation recommended by an ex dental technician.  The establishment was tucked away in a backstreet underneath a very dark archway and behind a very non-descript door - unknown to many who would seek a dental technician out these days without the exhorbitant costs of being referred by the local dentist!!  The site that met my eyes was strange to say the least, four walls white washed from floor to ceiling, moulds on desks of various sets of teeth and plaster splashes in abundance!!  Reminded me of "the demon barber" initially but wondering if this nice man would turn out to be "a demon dentist technician" instead!!  I have to return tomorrow to have said tooth replaced in full resplendent glory and I will be able to smile again without a horrendous gap showing and I will be able to pronounce my "F's" without sounding like "Fl's"!! - ah joy!

The wonder of all this little exercise is that I met with him today, he informed me it will only take 30 mins., to build a new tooth and I can have it fitted tomorrow all within an hour!! In fact if he had'nt been booked up today (guess lots of others had also over indulged in tropical fruits & nuts over Christmas!!) I could have had my new tooth immediately!!

I have to say in today's world full of negativity and slaggings off - I find such science a miracle to be behold and I for one am glad to be a part of the 21st century - historial reminders of teeth being pulled and replaced with ugly pliers and no anaesthetic spring to mind!! 

 However -  if I don't return copies of my will are lodged with suitable family members!!

Monday, 3 January 2011


Being a collector of Suzi Cooper ware I visited an antiques fair today only to find a Suzi Cooper set on display in first class shape, no chips, no wear signs and a lovely style. I knew this was special, negotiating for a suitable price I decided enough was enough and I was not the mug the vendor had perceived.   I'm sure the vendor paid a lot less than me but certainly folks need to make a profit but being ripped off is not an option just after Christmas!!  Back to the drawing board or car boots I think but even now as typing the temptation to return is still there and negotiate a further reduction!!  Sometimes one has to cut her losses and just put the money away for another day and hopefully a better price - still the bitter sting of disappointment lingers - but time to banish it and hope that fate will put another opportunity my way - well within my price range!! These days I've learnt when I see something to get it there and then, having been caught out on many occasions for returning only to find the thing I wanted had gone and kicked myself afterwards for not going with my initial gut reaction  - but not today!!  Perhaps someone's looking out for me and saying - "no you can do better than that"!!  Thank you guardian angel - I think!!

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Family, family, family.

As we role on into another year full of expectation and surprises no doubt, I'm excited at the prospect of facing a New Year and silently resolving to stick to my resolutions this time for sure!!

Having spent Christmas & New Year with various members of my family I'm reminded once again of the value of their worth.  Despite all the media drivel that is written about Christmas and New Year being one of the worst times for family fall outs etc., I would argue that its also a time for family togetherness - whether through duty or desire!! Why is everyone so negative about this time of the year, we need boosting up - not bashing down - there's too much of it around these days!!  In a nutshell my family are great with all their different personailities why the hell should we all get on together all the time - not possible - but as long as we do most of the time that's O.K. isn't it surely?? and I guess most families are the same??

My matriarch has always been there for the bad and good times, infuriating, frustrating, supportive, then surprising and ever loving.  My patriarch now conspicuous by his absence and his silent support that is all the more profound now he has left this world for a better place one hopes and missed every day.  A brother who has his own new life challenges to face and his ever supporting wife throughout it all.  All of my children all challenging but loving in different ways who will always be my pride and joy along with their respective offspring who never cease to surprise me with their vast knowledge way ahead of all of their tender years. A husband who is always one step ahead of me and supportive in more numerous ways than I could ever relate and he too ever loving.

Meeting up with a 90 year old relative who is still smiling, healthy, happy, and walking 3 miles every morning in all weathers what a trojan and one for whom I have the greatest respect and admiration, never bemoaning her lot and just grateful to still be alive at 90 and having the company of my matriarch whenever possible only "wishing they lived much closer to each other, so they could keep each other company".  

I am truly grateful for all of these people in my life and the part they have and will continue to play in it.  In all their funny, infuriating personalities they have helped shape me into the person that I am now and I love them all for it.  All mushy stuff but true nevertheless and families are something to value so hang on to them in 2011!!