Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Dog & Cat Law

1. If I like it, it’s mine.
2. If it’s in my mouth, it’s mine.
3. If it looks like mine, it’s mine.
4. If I can take it from you, it’s mine.
5. If I had it a little while ago, it’s mine.
6. If I saw it first, it’s mine.
7. If you have something and put it down, it’s mine.
8. If I chew something up, all of the pieces are mine.
9. If it used to be your’s, get over it.
10. If it’s broken, it’s your’s.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011


Just warming up after an evening of club kayaking. Loved it and learnt a lot. Went with the Irish student vet who said earlier in the day she was "proudly non sporting" after tonight, her first time she said she is hooked and wants to do more. The Italian vet who is seeing practice and has problems going straight on the water, it was her 2nd time. She improved a bit (maybe?)

Was great was in a hardshell not been in one of those since l was a kid. I have my eyes on one will need to go down to cornwall though to confirm so later in the year.

As l was only there for 1 session l was given choice of capsize drill or not...of course l stayed which ended up with me being first over. B-L-O-O-D-Y H-E-C-K! the water was cold.
When l got to the side l had a sever attack of giggles and couldn't get out so someone tried to haul me out, l was laughing so much he dropped me back in the water and made me go awaayyyyy to the ladder and climb out :-))

2hrs of fun, all equipment hire, excellent BCU tutoring and only £5 can not beat that.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011


Watching the people enjoying the river made me wish l could be out on the water as well but l didn't see how. I had kayaked when l was a youngster back home at a holiday camp l used to go to, l spent hours out on the water & loved it. I hadn't allowed for the fact that Brian was at work behind the scenes.

I had been at a fairly local practice, only 60mile round trip/day for about 4 weeks and had a couple weeks more to go on return l got speaking to one of the vet's vet as he had mentioned his "new boat". It turned out this was an inflatable kayak, my thoughts were the plastic play things you see on the beach, boy was l wrong. Reading up it turns out one make (one of the cheapest ones) has done the Amazon River 2xs in the 60s, they are no toy.

He bought his off Amazon so l looked into it. There was problems with the one he had, it was on for messing about in l wanted a multi use more serious kayak. Finally l found one that l liked & decided to save up for, not cheap at just over £300.
talking to him after he had his first outing he agreed with my assessment & said he was looking for a better one for himself the other was great for using with his young kids.

With saving up in mind l met up with some friends by chance a couple of weeks later and told them what l was doing. I was told a friend of a friend was selling a brand new, unused canoe for £500 and it cost £1500. I contacted J and arranged to buy & collect it. The canoe was to big & heavy for me, it took 3 of us to lift it on & off the car roof for a start so l took it the next day to Brookbank who put it up for sale for me and we did a deal on the one l wanted blue not red & bits: paddle, buoyancy aid, dry bag, pump, dry holder for phone, wet suit bottoms, neoprene socks & gloves. I want to canoe year round and felt l may as well get the items up front.

It took about 4 weeks for the sale to get sorted, to get my
British Canoe Union membership through so l could access inland waterways, rivers & canals plus problems with mum before l could get out on the water.

My first trip was 3 weeks ago l went out on the Leeds Liverpool canal but miss read google and the ended up at a lock with a 10ft drop to high to get out of or down to. It was chucking it down with rain and even the ducks & fish had looked for shelter. So l tootled around on the top end of the canal between locks getting the feel of handling in the wind that blasted across the water and the rain that drenched me, a good intro.
One narrow boater that went past well wrapped laughed and said l was crazier than he was. I know l was certainly wetter & colder than him so l guess he was right about crazy, but l was having fun.

The following week was clear blue skies, l found a new easier launch place and set out. After about 3.5hrs paddling l had this sudden thought..."l got here l now have to get back!" by the end of about 6hrs my back and arms knew it.
Was a fantastic day though and people were surprised to see a canoe so had lots of chats as l went past and hellos.

Thankfully l read up on paddles and got a good one that l can tour with. Warnings said distance with the cheap ones don't work as you get rubbing as the paddle connecting bar twists.
The kayak is very light l want to try with the skeg think that will help. As it isn't ridged the canoe twists enough that you may not notice but your muscles can feel the strain after a long day l love it though.

Fired up by this & liking the dark l decided to do a night tour & chose the opposite way as there was less homes. I set out at 19:00 got back at 23:00. I played the music saved on my phone and as the sun set played Brian's favourite song, which l had also played at his funeral "Wind Beneath My Wings" the music faded as the sun dipped & with tears pouring down my face l turned the music off & paddled in the silence with the dark descending, everyone home & the silence of the canal with glinting water to myself.
It was very spiritual & l have decided that as l like walking in the dark so kayaking in the dark is also my favourite time.

Scenes from Leeds Liverpool Canal

Night Descends

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

New pet ideas

I have been requested by my neighbour to think what breed he could get for a new dog as he has given in to requests. They had a lab who passed a few years back. l am a mongrel person and they may yet go for that but want to do the best from the start.
There is always kids 3 & 8 and various friends of theirs around the house. So must be child friendly,
Will be walked but not miles a day,
As few known genetic problems as possible,
Will be petplan insured
Easy to train
Easy to keep clean/groomed

My suggestion of a flat dog fitting in well was looked on with eagerness it fitted all the boxes bar training and even that is possible to a degree... it always knows when food is about. I said they would need to get a licence which may be a bit more difficult but hey it is an excellent breed and crocodiles can be very pretty.

So far though l am either mongrel or Border Terrier biased as my initial suggestion has been declined.

Feel free to add any but so far l have discounted pretty much the whole breeds book of suggestions on the vetnurse site. From genetic problems, thick/long coat, dodgy on temperament, excitable, to much exercise, to big/small and to.....

Once the choice is made l will update you on it.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Life Continues Part 2 "The Break"

The first anniversary of Brian's passing was a time l was not looking forward to but it was as inevitable as the tides. We had always talked about going to the Hay on Wye book festival but in the way of things kept missing it. Around September he gave me a poke and l looked it up. It was to be held for 9 days ending on the 5th June the day after Brian's passing.
Looking up accommodation there was a camp site just next to it so l mailed them, crossed fingers knowing l would get in as it was so early and as l had such a strong push l knew l was booked whatever happened.

A couple of weeks before the event l asked a friend if she wanted to come with me, she lost her husband about 14years ago and would be a support if l needed, and she cooked, a major consideration.

I decided to contact the site organisers and see if l could fit on a smaller site, again all went well and they changed me to a cheaper site so £107/7nights as opposed to £140/7nights. They were excellent with their organising and the loos etc were all kept spotless. The rest of the year the field is full of sheep and not a camp field.

It was my first proper away in CB and the drive thanks to Tom was clear and well directed. We found the site and went to our slot, l turned on the gas and we celebrated with a coffee.
The "over the hedge" to the festival was a bit of a cheat yes it was but you had to walk about 1/2 mile around the field & houses as there was no way through the hedge, not that that mattered the exercise did me good.

The festival was not at all what either of us had been expecting. It was full of all sorts of talks which l had known about & not booked due to cost, coffee places, a few charity stands and odds and ends and very few books.

Being a book lover this was a bit weird calling it a "Book Festival" however Hay on Wye more than made up for that they are full with second hand book shops about 40 of them. I found 8 books from an author l was looking for. If you love books then get over to the town sometime they are amazing.

Getting talking to Celine & her Husband who had a stall in the town Mara Sculptures with sculptures from Zimbabwe we found that the small stand a gallery from town took at the actual festival cost 30K. We were more than a tad taken aback until speaking to the people who supplied the coffee at the camp site and were parked next to us we found that a coffee stall at the festival was 130k that was just a gobstopper.No wonder the costs of things were so high.

A big bug with me and l am sure many others was that 02 doesn't work in the area, in fact l never got 02 back until we were well out of Wales. I contacted them afterwards and got a weeks refund for it. Luckily Ann has 2 phones and l put credit on one and managed to stay in touch with Mum.
I could get intermittent use after midnight with the odd text in or out. On the last full day l found if l went down through the camp field (huge area) down the road about 30yards, over the style, through the field of sheep, over the next style, past the thicket of trees, up the hillock full of nettles l could get a signal.
All other suppliers worked, according to 02 they are in the process of sorting out signals but if you are on 02 & not been to Wales be aware the signal is either patchy or impossible. I lump in all Wales as after talking to people apparently it is like that all over at least North Wales. When we have been in the past l am not sure if we noticed as it was just quick day trips.

On the 4th of June l went on my own down to the river, found rather a dangerous path that was vertical and slippery and spent the day hidden from view by those on the river and people from above.
I was found by a loopy border collie who threw himself down the slope at high speed slurped at me with a big grin and hurtled back up the slope when he was called.
I wished the many canoes going past had quieter occupants and would have loved to be out there on the water but as l don't own a boat or anything this was impossible.
There was a rainstorm at one point, l scrambled under a tipped over oak with a thick roof of leaves and stayed nice and dry.
After about 7hours l went back to the camp site and spent a quiet night before we set off home on the 5th.

As we drove home on the 5th l decided to side track and go via Langar to spend a short time there. It was nice seeing friends again and l went for a quiet walk round the airfield with Brian, and memories.

Life Continues Part 1

About time l got my finger out, l enjoyed blogging but it has gone so far into the background it has become defunct after speaking to a good friend of mine David who has been a very strong support to me l think it is about time l came back and stated to make it a part of my life again. I enjoy writing and it may not be grammatically or spelling correct but it makes me feel better and l think some folks enjoy it.

So much has gone on in life it is hard to know where to start but will give it a go and do it over several postings so l do not turn out one overly long tome that no one, including myself will read:

Work has gone on apace but not much at the night place they are owned by a major group who are going nuts about wages paid so they make the staff swap or do without help, as staff leave or go on maternity (a common thing for some reason in veterinary work) they are not replaced.

Most of my work has been in the day time and l have been all over the country. Apart from Wales or Scotland, pity l like both those areas.
Latest trip was to Malmsbury and staying in Tetbury at their flat there, what lovely towns they are especially Tetbury, full of flower baskets and an annual Tetbury in bloom contest that most of the town enters. Add that to the Cotswold stone and old style means, nightmare to park, pretty to visit probably nightmare to live bet they are full of listed buildings.
My best job was about 2.5miles from home. I was able to leave a few minutes before opening up in the morning, few minutes to get home and slept in my own bed.

My accounts are the bain of my life. When l say l am about to do my accounts there is 3 whhooshes of air as Brian His guardian Angel and Mine head to the corner of the room and the table and chairs there. While muttering about who let her loose on paperwork & oh no there goes a quiet night.
"No dont touch that figure nooonoo, oh good grief, finally you got that sorted, we told you it was wrong column"
"Now change that decimal point it isnt 9000 it is 90 no no LOOK there THAT decimal, would you please stop looking over there and stressing and sort that decimal point out?"
They carry on like this during the 4hrs or so it takes me to do about 2 lines of accounts

The presentation for the Royal Aero Club Awards was amazing, 2 of my friends went along to support me Craig & Kev.
I ended up buying a dress from Asda and have to say l did look smart for once and even had shoes on, very "not me" my usual garb being barefoot and casual.

It was a long day l drove to near London left home 2am caught the tube into London, met Craig and spent the day with him. he was fine that l was barefoot all day. We went into hard Rock Cafe next to the RAF club had a coffee and l changed into night smarts & we met Kev & his girlfriend.
What a night it was lovely to see so many people l knew getting awards, Stuart, Al & Pixie, not to mention those l didn't know or knew by sight who got awards other skydivers or for other disciplines in the air.
Afterwards l retraced route and got back about 2am after no sleep for 24hrs and living on adrenaline. While driving down l discovered a new website they were discussing on radio4 l use the site quite a bit now called Moodscope

Brian's will is finally sorted. It took a letter to my MP who contacted bob diamond big boss at barclays who contacted the managing director at clydesdale, barclays partner finance to get them to sort it and send me a letter of apology.
Unreal how they have behaved l am not interested in their apology just wanted it sorted. That was finally closed about 10 days before the first anniversary of Brian's passing.