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The Beach

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Eddie Mair | 06:23 UK time, Friday, 20 July 2007

What is the Beach?

It’s a place to go when the stresses of your real life need relieving. Sometimes it is fairly quiet and you might feel like you’re the only one around, but you can leave your ‘footprints’ for others to find later on. Othertimes it is the home for a real party, with constant gossip, leg-pulling, rumour, innuendo, chit-chat and weirdness.

If this were a forum (and it sort of is because we post responses to each other, not just to Eddie, hence our term for ourselves 'Froggers', a combination of forum and blogger) then the beach would be the off-topic area.
It's a tropical location, no matter the time of year it's always warm and pleasant there.

Sunrises and sunsets are spectacular, the evenings balmy. It has a number of different locations; the Nick Clarke waterfront bar; the smokers corner; Fido's Run for the dog-walkers; the Naughty Step and many others.
How do you find your way around? There is no direct answer to the question.

The beach is a moveable feast, literally. It will be renewed by our Lord and master Mr. Edward de Mair each Friday morning. This is because we have found in the past that when the number of posts exceeds about 600 the entire thing becomes unwieldy and unstable. A case of the beach turning to quicksand.

Froggers often leave bottles / glasses / trays of their favourite tipple on the bar for others to sample, not to mention big / small eats.

There is a herd of camels who frequent the sands, which froggers are very fond of. There are sun-loungers, so you can take it easy and catch some rays. Quite often the late-night attendees will have a barbie.
It's a fun place, with only one real rule; Be nice to each other; we are ALL chums here. New Froggers are ALWAYS welcome.

The real debate happens on the other threads. The beach is a place for banter, whimsy, relaxation and friendship, where jarring comments are not particularly welcome. There are certain very mild protocols, which you tend to pick up as you go along. So slip your shoes off, feel the sand between your toes, relax and enjoy yourself.


  1. At 06:48 AM on 20 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Aaaahhaaaaahhhh. . . . nnnnnnhhh. (Turns over in hammock).
    Nice here, innit?

  2. At 06:56 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Ah, just what I need on a grey July morning, a nice, fresh, sunny beach to stroll along. Thanks Eddie!

  3. At 09:16 AM on 20 Jul 2007, jonnie wrote:

    Why are cats and dogs coming to mind?

  4. At 09:19 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Stephen, Leader of STROP wrote:

    I've had a thought (hello all by the way - thought I'd visit earth again). Do the Met Office provide weather forcasts for the beach?

    It would make pleasant reading after checking the warnings for the UK!

    Now if someone could point me to NC's Bar...

  5. At 09:21 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Stephen, Leader of STROP wrote:

    I've had a thought (hello all by the way - thought I'd visit earth again). Do the Met Office provide weather forcasts for the beach?

    It would make pleasant reading after checking the warnings for the UK!

    Now if someone could point me to NC's Bar...

  6. At 09:37 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    Hi Fred, Hi Robbie,

    How lovely to be on the Beach and to leave the dreary Sussex weather behind!

    For a change I'm leaving a selection of English cheeses with freshly baked bread - in honour of the English Cheese Competition. Prominent amongst these will be the Keene's Cheddar and Cardoon Goat's Cheese which Mr. Humphrys raved about this morning (amazingly how quickly we can produce these things here, isn't it?) along with a selection of other cheesey goodies.

    To accompany these I've left a couple of bottles of Nyetimber wines - Enjoy!

  7. At 10:06 AM on 20 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Right! It is now 10.00 and there are no posts showing on the beach except from FF and myself. I don't believe that no-one else has been on the beach AND I can smell coffee! I suppose I'll have to get up and see what's happening then.

  8. At 10:07 AM on 20 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Morning all! Friday brekfast of bucks fizz, fresh fruit, homemade bread and some lovely organic butter.

    Frances O (previous Beach); what kind of thing do you write? If you really miss the classes can I suggest Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg as a great touchstone and The Artists Way can be useful too. As for getting stuff out there - magazines and competitions are a great way of testing the water and getting your name out there. And self publishing is always an option. Good luck with it - from a fellow scribbler!

  9. At 10:07 AM on 20 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Right! It is now 10.00 and there are no posts showing on the beach except from FF and myself. I don't believe that no-one else has been on the beach AND I can smell coffee! I suppose I'll have to get up and see what's happening then.

    Hmmmm - frozen solid.

  10. At 10:09 AM on 20 Jul 2007, madmary wrote:

    Yay! It's not raining here!

    Morning all! Nice to be back on the beach.


  11. At 10:10 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Oooh lovely. Scrambled eggs anyone?

  12. At 10:17 AM on 20 Jul 2007, jonnie wrote:






  13. At 10:23 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Never fear Fearless, it's grey and chilly up here in July too and it's nearly 10.30, so not much hope of improvement. In which case I aim to spend as much time as I can down on the Beach today.

    RJD, that hammock's left netting marks all down one side of your face - perhaps we need a mirror here rather than hoping to use the rockpools. Which reminds me, did someone say that a waterfall had sprung into life while I was away? Should I go and investigate?

  14. At 11:11 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    I think this may be the reason for the problems today, but it's worth a look!


    And I commend the Eddie link to all froggers - Very Mairish!

  15. At 11:16 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    Well, the weather's clearly got into the wires.

    However: it could be the webpage that's to blame.

    Froggers, go look! It's lovely, and the new Eddie bio is very Mair-ish.

    Well done, Eddie and co.

  16. At 11:17 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Brian Christley wrote:

    Who is going to investigate the leaks to the media from the Crown Prosecution Service on Thursday evening 19th July 2007?

  17. At 11:23 AM on 20 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:





    Friday bloggage? Whats the cyber equivalent of a high fibre diet?!

  18. At 11:26 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Hello everyone.

    I'm not a well bunny, spent large parts of the past two days in July throwing up and camping out in the bathroom.

    I'm just going to crawl into this hammock and feel sorry for myself if that's ok with you guys.

    No flowers.

    :o( []

  19. At 11:52 AM on 20 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    It's lovely up here in Scotland!


  20. At 12:16 PM on 20 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Val P - Not sure about this idea of having mirrors about the place - the sight of myself in the morning will only depress me. As for the waterfall, I haven't been there but apparently it does exist. I think Wonko found it and Ap has been there for a shower!

    Wonko - Sorry to hear that you are unwell. Any requests?

  21. At 12:40 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Got to say I like the new web-page, Eddie :-)

    Right, off for a swim (maybe literally, given what it's like back in July!)

  22. At 12:43 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Stephen (4&5) Hello! I did say hello and remark on another thread that we hadn't seen you on Earth for a while. How are you?

    Witchi (17), Hahaha. We could try linking to the Daily Mail website -- they seem to manage to churn out continuous s***... :-)

    Wonko (18), Get well soon. Hugs.

  23. At 12:55 PM on 20 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Appy (22) - can you imagine the, er, dialogue that would take place?? Actually, I think we may have seen some of that already!

    Wonko - all the best old fruit; feel better soon (( ))

  24. At 01:04 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    RJD - Thank you, I'd like an informal ceremony with plenty of mourners and excessive weeping. And please play "Refugees" by Van Der Graaf Generator as the curtains close. Oh yes, and have a damn good booze up on me afterwards at Nick's.

    Seriously, some weak, warm sweet black tea would be appreciated...

    Thanks for the hugs Aperitif, they help a lot.

    :o( []

  25. At 01:09 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    O see we are heading for a record number of eddie posts today. And he is not even on a train. Thanks big sis ,I see they have updated eddies front end :-)

    And I must say it was time for a re vamp.

    Fresh baked bread on bar to make your own sandwiches with. Ham Cheese, salad etc. Careful with the Bread Knife its Sh(ow!)

  26. At 01:53 PM on 20 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Wonko - Tea as requested. And I will comply with all your other wishes with one small exception.

    I determined some time ago that if I were ever charged with the final arrangements, that no matter what the departed had requested for the final music I would make a switch at the last minute. I'm afraid as the curtain closes we will all be listening to Jerry Lee Lewis singing "Great Balls of Fire”!

    Have a good rest now.

  27. At 02:15 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    It would be Queen and 'Fat Bottomed Girls Make the Rocking World Go Round' for me pls RJ, but academic as I presume we'll all have to go to the Froggers Anthem?
    I swear I've just seen a lifeboat on the A40...
    um what is a cubit?

  28. At 02:19 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    RJD - Curses! I shall haunt you from the grave for that! Wooooooooo! Be a chum and at least play it during the service. Thanks for the tea.

    Reminds me of a story I heard when I lived in Lancashire. A woman rang into a radio 'phone in to talk about her Mother's recent send off. Her Mother had always loved the singing of Gracie Fields, and had requested that "Sally" (which was her name I believe) be played at the appropriate time. Sadly there was a mix up with the music. As the curtains closed the chapel rang out to the sounds of: "Give a cheer as you wave me goodbye..."

    Only in Britain...

    Thanks Witchi for the hugs too - posted before your good wishes appeared on the Beach.

    I'm going to be quiet in a corner now...

    :o! []

  29. At 02:32 PM on 20 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Cubit (noun) - Small extension for a snooker player's tapering rod to faciltate access to balls.

  30. At 02:34 PM on 20 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Musically send offs - I'd quite like Lydia as performed by the Muppets.

  31. At 02:40 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    tee hee hee

  32. At 02:57 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    I'm a traditionalist when it comes to the send off music... I'd like The Ying Tong Song :-)

  33. At 03:06 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Humph wrote:

    Cubit (verb) - To package the ingredients for a single serving of Oxo.


  34. At 03:28 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    Somebody come and find me when Aperitif next appears here, please? I'm off behind the bar practising grape-peeling, having rashly promised to peel grapes as a signal of admiration for the defence of 'disinterested'.

    At the moment it's rather hit-and-miss but I'm sure I'll get the knack of it eventually.

    Is anyone interested in the failure peelures for putting into fruit-salad? They seem to be producing an incredible amount of juice, so much that it's dripping off my elbows, so they'd make a good base, if mixed with the right sort of alcohol.

  35. At 03:36 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    "the right sort of alcohol"

    As long as it's Ethyl, is there a 'wrong' sort?

  36. At 03:53 PM on 20 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Chris -

    How about we use the grapes to make our own Beach 2007 vintage? I always fancied ago at squsihing grapes between my toes.

  37. At 04:14 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Phone call to say I've been shortlisted. Interview 10am next week. Here we go again.

  38. At 04:29 PM on 20 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    JG - is that for the job you really want??

  39. At 04:47 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    witchiwoman, brilliant thought! I only brought a couple of bunches, but the vines over byond the dunes are covered in 'em, so all we need now is one of those flat-looking barrels to stomp them in. They won't need peeling for that, will they?

    Ed I, if the alcohol already tastes of liquorice I don't think it would mix very well with fresh grapes. Likewise I simply don't fancy a fruit salad made using Stout or Bitter. We could try the Dubious Rhubarb Liqueur, though. Or how about Peach Schnappes? Or Raspberry Liqueur?

    I'll start making a fruit salad on a base of peaches and grapes, and peach schnappes, and maybe some raspberries. I know there's some home-made vanilla ice-cream to go with it, in the freezer, I put it there earlier.

    Come one, come all! Fruit salad on me. (All over me, in the case of the grape-juice.)

  40. At 04:47 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Mr Fish (34), Eh? Perhaps I need to look at other threads and come back?...

    Jason (37) Ooooh, break a leg again! You'd better get this one, or we'll have to start on your arms next :-)

  41. At 04:53 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Best of luck, Jason.

  42. At 05:09 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    What day next week, Jason? Try not to get too stressed-out over the weekend....after all, you THE man for the job! Wishing you well as ever. x

  43. At 05:12 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Fishy Chris, I've been and looked and now I understand. How very kind, but you can stop peeling now, unless of cousre you're enjoying it? :-)

  44. At 05:12 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    What day next week, Jason? Try not to get too stressed-out over the weekend....after all, you are THE man for the job! Wishing you well as ever. x

  45. At 05:20 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    RJD (29)

    Don't !
    i'm trying to listen to Mr Straw....
    You are awful....!


  46. At 05:25 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    Bless! Sit quietly and enjoy your glass. Tell more later.


  47. At 05:25 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I'm back!!!!

    (Don't ask... the spectre of paternal heart disease is banished forever but the maternal politics have been grim...)

    Invisible sun is officially over invisible yard arm here at Fifi Towers, so pull up a glass and have some of Tesburyson's mid-range rioja everyone, to celebrate my watery return to what passes for Real Life.

    Jason, congrats on the interview! Brilliant news, especially for the young folks that will benefit once they finally award you the floody* job!

    * Fifi Rhyming Slang

    Fifi xxx

    Malicious? After a WEEK since my last posting?


  48. At 05:34 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    Welcome home, Fifi. Good news about your Dad.
    I'll have a glass of that wine, please - care for some crusty bread and paté to go with it? There's enough for everone to have a big chunk.
    Hugs to (((((Wonko)))))

  49. At 06:05 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Ooh, Ed ... you answered me before I commented!

    That's what I like about this blog.

    E (ddiemair) S P


    Fifi ;o)

  50. At 06:10 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Selkius Piscinus wrote:

    Aperitif, tell'ee what m'dear, you eat the ones that ended up in one piece (all three of them) and we'll put the rest into the fruit salad?

    Or maybe add them to the vat we're stomping for wine, but I think the skins are meant to be involved in wine so that might not be such a good idea.

  51. At 06:21 PM on 20 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    Over here on the beach, only three forms of water are allowed:

    Fresh - in drinks
    Frozen - in drinks or ices
    Brine - in the sea

    Precipitation is banned!

    Meanwhile, after speaking to Jonnie yesterday on the CransleyCam, apparently the music currently playing is the iTunes selection he pipes out to his guests...

    So far, I've heard Sinead O'Connor, The Carpenters and plenty of Boyzone.

    At least he hasn't subjected them to Spice Reunited...yet! It could potentially discourage burglars - but then again, it could also discourage guests...

  52. At 06:27 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Welcome back Feefs! You have been missed. I think you can be happy that you missed a lot of flaming on the blog by some newbies.

    Can I ask my fellow froglets for some advice? I'm thinking of buying a laptop in a few months time (to celebrate my mid-life crisis point), and I'm toying with getting a non-Windoze machine. Instead, i'm thinking of going "fruity" with an A**le. Anyone got any experience with them (particularly M**books)? Are they worth it? If I'm going to get one and customise it a bit, do you recommend getting more memory at the expense of having the DVD-burning capability? Any comments gratefully appreciated :-)

    Time for me to open a bottle of Shiraz-Merlot, I think, and sit down to enjoy the Now Show !

  53. At 07:00 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    No1 Son (yes he's still at home, having come down for a few days.....) has just shown me this on youtube

    I don't know if any of you have ever played the game Monkey Island, but this is a "well good" (apparently) version of the theme! It seems to me nice and piratey for our island. Makes a change from Harry Potter anyway.......

  54. At 07:37 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Peej wrote:

    welcome back Fi - glad to hear about your dad - cheers !

  55. At 07:44 PM on 20 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    Just out of curiosity, is anyone planning to buy THAT book? At midnight? :)

    My advice: unless you have children, don't bother - if the stores have ordered correctly there'll still be copies available 12 hours later at noon - and probably some left by 4pm :)

    I bet some newspaper book reviewers are getting ready for a night of speed reading...

  56. At 07:49 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Interview is for Friday at 10am. It is for the job I really want. Whatever that might mean!

    I was in that particular school for nearly three hours this morning and it would be really good to be there permanently. The kids are very challenging but the staff are great (as are the kids underneath it all).

    Two of the "worst" boys in the class I would be in came up to me to ask if it was true that I had applied to be their teaching assistant. I said it was.

    "Do you really want to work in our class?"
    Yes, I do - do you want me to work with you?
    Will you be good for me if I get the job?
    "Yes, we will."

    Well, they sounded like they meant it.

    (They didn't punctuate quite as well as that, though.)

  57. At 07:52 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Feefs (47), Welcome back -- great news.

    Thank you Selkius Piscinus (50), They just rounded off my dinner nicely!

    Val (53), I've never even heard of "Monkey Island" but it was a charming little ditty. Why do all the You Tube posters say it's wrong? Have they not heard of artistic interpretation?

  58. At 07:55 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Gillian that sounds gorgeous!



  59. At 08:01 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Peej, et al, thank you so much; I feel missed, and loved, and luvverly!

    Jason: sounds as if you are the right man iwth the right touch at the right time. Don't be afraid to quote at interview what you've told us ... if they're afraid of the implications of the contact, you wouldn't have been able to be effective there anyway. And you WILL BE!!!

    Feeling very mellow now. Can you tell?


  60. At 08:17 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    FFred, re the piece of technological fruit. Check the prices of memory upgrades from third party vendors like Crucial dot com and the like.

    Am no expert on that flavour of laptop but Mrs G swears by the interface. She swears at Windoze.

    On most laptops it is easier to add memory later than a different optical drive but some have modular replaceable units that you can upgrade to. Do some goggling online to see what applies to you appleys.

  61. At 08:44 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    I wish to complain, it has taken me 4.5 hours to drive 9 miles - and that after being let out early for bad weather.
    WHY didn't the BBC warn me. I could have found a pub and just marinated for 4 hours.
    Yours, grumpily, just about to get outside a quintuple Auvchentosan. The rest of the bottle is on the bar. I shall be under it

  62. At 09:01 PM on 20 Jul 2007, madmary wrote:

    Best of luck Jason! You won't need it, you'll be brilliant!

    I wont' be getting the HP book at midnight although I might get it later in the year. I rather enjoy the escapism of the books. I shall have a Harry P Christmas I think and read and watch the series.

    As I've been missing for a while I've brought a couple of bottles of nice wine and some nibbles.


  63. At 09:07 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Hi Fifi, so glad about your news. Hello everyone - just back from windy village common where the cricket pitch is puddly and the marquee flapping in the wind. The hog roast was, perhaps fortunately, gas fired, and most people were huddled in the bar. I should have worn a winter jumper, so we came away early having done our duty by the fund raisers and caught up on the gossip.

    That was my sister's village by the way on PM this evening. Must ask her if she knew they were about to be a non-village.

    Right off to pin out a cashmere shawl. Couple of bottles of decent village red from the hog roast on the bar.

    Oh, and yes Mittfh, I am getting *that* book. HP is not a patch on lots of other childrens books but it's a rollicking good read and the books did get better as Harry grew up, so I'm expecting a relatively adult climax.

  64. At 09:11 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Aunt Dahlia - how absolutely miserable. Here have this nice soft towel to dry you off, and then I've tied our new striped hammock between these two palm trees. Yours for the first go....and relax.

  65. At 09:26 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Truthyness wrote:

    Rats! Forgot the towel!

  66. At 09:40 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    Just been catching up on the fun and games last week- sounded quite heated at times.Not nice...

    Nice to relax at the beach after sprogg's graduation.i found it quite draining ,emotionally. Still. all ''done and dusted,''-on to pastures new.

    Lots of returnees from holls- hope you all had fun, sun etc.

    Fifi- good news- take the comfy hammock and stay mellow.

    Good to see you Belinda.

    Well, think I'll just sit here, do some more catching up before I have a dip in the sea and find somewhere for a nap.


  67. At 09:50 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Hello folks. Have stayed home tonight rather than go out for office drinks as you-know-who will be there. She has somehow got hold of my mobile number (a curse on the head of whosoever gave it to her!) and left a voicemail and a text. Yikes! Thank goodness for the beach.

    Hugs to all who need them -- Aunt D and Wonko especially I think.

    I'm feeling cakey again -- twice in one week! Anyone fancy a piece of this very large Black Forest Gateaux?

  68. At 11:45 PM on 20 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    SchwarzwaldKirschTorte? Mmmmmm my favorite. Nice cherries.

  69. At 12:58 AM on 21 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Appy - but you're a savoury gal, I remember that from the Chocolate Run last year. Can that really be nearly a year ago?? OK if she's starting to leave voicemails and texts, unbidden, then you really need to have words. As you know, it needn't be nasty just ask her what she thinks she's doing?

    Jonnie - can I pick your brains about Schipol Airport please? No1 Son flying in on the 10th, first unaccompanied flight ( I know, he's not exactly underage, but has only flown once before, 7 years ago, en famille). Any 'how to get to the bus stop into town' type tips etc? Ta J.

  70. At 08:24 AM on 21 Jul 2007, Truthyness wrote:

    Dunno if it's legit to post links on these boards... but while everyone's basking around thought I'd pitch in with a spot of Hectoring (groan!). Has anyone signed THE petition yet..? If not watch out! time's moving apace and the deadline's November 21 2007. http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/radio4theme/

    Only 128 signatories so far :o( ... an indication of the number of Radio4 early risers prepared to put up a fight.

    That theme tune is broadcasting history. I simply cannot reconcile to the day without it. It links past (distinguished?) to present (less so? ... discuss.). What's wrong with maintaining the connection? What's right with severing it?

    If there is ONE good reason for axing it, apart from doggedly adhering to politically correct notions like: knowledge is superfluous ergo, by association, so is history and wonderful atmospheric music linking us to it.

    And what do we get instead? Nuthin.

    Consider asking the Chinese or Japs to do away with their tea ceremonies; or silencing the lark! Does a jeweller sell his gold without the carrat.

    And so what if those distinctive ballads are unusual to a teenager. Forty years ago (ouch!) to me as a kid they sounded pretty mysterious too, but gradually their significance was revealed.

    But this is the chill out zone so I'll slope off... (Exits humming)

    Daa dah da dah da daa da
    da da dah daa da da da da daaa.*

    Just remembered the reason for this post... searching for a link that broadcasts the tunes, any suggestions?

    *For the few listeners/bloggers still trusting the Beeb, prizes will be awarded to the first who can put a name to the hum!

  71. At 10:18 AM on 21 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    The best improvement made to Radio 4 in reecent years was when they got rid of that awful theme. I used to switch off the radio for 5 minutes as soon as it started.

  72. At 10:42 AM on 21 Jul 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    morning peeps, just popped in from July for a dip in the surf before a spell of DIY for #2 son.

    I did way too much scrambled eggs and crispy bacon this morn (Saturday treat) so left them on the bar.....be quick though.....camels on the horizon...

    .....now has anyone seen my Speedos?..
    ..Gillian can you knit me another pair?......


  73. At 11:05 AM on 21 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    RJD (71): I concur. It has the same effect on me as the Archers theme.

    Now if they started the morning with Anarchy for the UK by the Sex Pistols....

  74. At 11:33 AM on 21 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    It could've been worse (with thanks to Mittfh)


  75. At 11:46 AM on 21 Jul 2007, Truthyness wrote:

    71, 73,

    Wonder if either 71 or 73 ever got up to listen!

    My point is, follow the wisdom of the hippocratic oath and "do no harm". Barwick Green gets much more air time and hits a much wider audience, so it is easy to understand that it irritates more people... Though you'll notice they've never dared change that!

    Besides the silent majority may yet swing it (i.e. reinstate the theme) Thus vigorous lobbying around the boards will be pursued...

    Hasta la c u

  76. At 12:09 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Truthyness (70&75), I think the Prime Minister has got more important things to think about. I also think it's bad form to come the beach and question the word of two of its much loved regular contributors -- RJD and Jason Good. If they say it made them switch off the radio then who are you to question that? The beach is meant to be a friendly and lighthearted place; please join in in that spirit.

    A, x.

  77. At 12:33 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    Just a gentle suggestion that you might be the one being too serious here on the strand....
    (((♡♡♡))) despite our differences elsewhere, I still love ya.

  78. At 12:42 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    DIWyman(72) You've seen the extent of my knitting skills -how much more embarrassment do you want me to inflict on you?
    I suggest you speak nicely to Anne P. who should be able to produce a pair to your own design!

  79. At 12:48 PM on 21 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Truthyness (75) - Ever occur to you that the silent majority is silent because the could care less about the darn theme?

    As for the Archers theme, I think you'll find that it has been changed and caused quite a stir.

    And for the record, there are very few mornings that I don't hear the transfer from World Service to Radio 4

    Jason (73) - Not sure about your choice, but it would certainly wake people up!

    Ap (76) - Morning. Daughter No2 of to Santiago de C - I'm not sure I was actually awake when I left her off at 5 this morning. And no, the parents weren't invited! They will be dancing live on TV so I'm going to try and see if I can tune into the program via the internet.

  80. At 12:58 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    "the spectre of paternal heart disease is banished forever"

    This has been troubling me since I first saw it, but everyone else seems to consider it good news. Please do confirm that the spectre hasn't been banished in the only truly 'forever' way.


  81. At 01:11 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Ed (77) I disagree, but I still love you too. :-)

    RJD (79), I find that 'live' is the best way to dance ;-). What's the spanish/norn-irsh for "ooh la la"?...

  82. At 01:31 PM on 21 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Ap In Norn Iron it would be - "Boys a dear, wud ye look at thon"

  83. At 01:45 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Well that then!

    Enjoy your internet viewing. I'm in the office :-(

  84. At 02:00 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Ed I (80) : Sloppy use of the word 'forever', for which I apologise.

    The quacks definitely found he has a heart, and the good news is that it's in perfect working order, arteries all clear.

    So, whatever is causing the problem, t'ain't t'art.

    Now on steroid inhaler twice a day, to see if it banishes the breathlessness (and the slight wheezing I could hear over the phone last night).

    Probably being off the beta blocker will give him back some of the lost energy as well.

    Modern medicine ... it sure has its down sides at times.

    Cheers for your concern though, Ed luv. Have a frug from Fifi, I really do appreciate it.

    ((( Ed I )))

    Fifi ;o)

  85. At 03:09 PM on 21 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Welcome fifi, and thanks for clearing up our concerns, as my first thought was the one and only forever!

    hi to everyone! Another cracking day on the beach! and nikki noodle is now 100%, he must have had a touch of the sun, methinks, not sure what happend, must be over exposure to something, or else a positively starlting lack of something to drink!

    so, who's knitting is this? :-)

    And, Molly, surely not? Again?! honestly...

    I must thank RJD for the heads up, but i think i'll wait until the internet is finished, before i start to look at it 'live', i mean, development's fine, in theory, but until it's all printed off, and you can hold it in your hand then its not really real, is it?!!!

    Hey ho, another silver lining. Gillian, that'll need stiching up or DIY will be showing us his metal!

    Coo, Ap, that sounds v good, being in the office AND working! I often fail on one, and indeed, on both at times!!




    thats better!!!!!!!!!!!

  86. At 03:15 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Hey Nikki Noodle :-) Nice to see you and glad you are 100%.

    Thanks for your cheering post too -- your commemts to RJD gave me a LOL moment. And I needed cheering -- I'm only in the office to get some work done whilst 'she who disturbs' me isn't here!!!

  87. At 03:53 PM on 21 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Ap - Well if you're in the office shouldn't you be working instead of frogging? :o)

  88. At 04:00 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Truthyness (75): My eminent colleagues have pretty much said it all. I will only add that about 7 years ago I heard most of Radio 4 between 11pm and 7am for over 9 months as I struggled with insomnia.

    RJD (79); It would certainly kick things off a little, don't you think? It could be their rendition of God Save The Queen on weekends... What would amuse me most is using the once most anti-establishment of groups for such an establishment purpose. John Lydon would hate it and, although I don't much like or dislike him, I do enjoy him expressing his annoyance at things.

    On call in an hour. I hope the weather remains this bad as the darling youth of Derbyshire seem reluctant to offend in the rain. I could really do with a relaxing evening in.

  89. At 04:48 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    Appy, I'm getting worried about you. This woman - or the effect her behaviour has on you, is tantamount to bullying. And up with that you should not put. There is an organisation called the Andrea Adams Trust who have a v helpful website which I recommend you have a butcher's at.

  90. At 04:52 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    I am RJD (87), I am! Just dipping in and out as I go.

    Jason (88) Surely God Save The Queen should be at bedtime? I do hate it if I've drifted off to sleep with the radio on timer only to be awoken by the national anthem. I wouldn't mind so much if it were a jolly punk tune :-)

  91. At 04:59 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Thanks Aunt Dahlia (89), I suppose it's crept up on me and I was a bit naive and didn't realise what was going on. Talked it through with a very wise woman (my mother) last night and she made me realise that this girl does fancy me and her behaviour is bordering on sexual harrassment and I really have to do something about it, not just hope it will go away. Have found the website to which you refer. Will bookmark it! :-)

  92. At 05:08 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    I too have been working. So hard the s*dding printer has broken down at a critical point. Now I could take to drink, but I did that last night... what the heck, it hasn't stopped raining all day, all the lights are on, am just persuading HWMBO that getting some logs in would be a good wheeze, and I have brewed a vast West African curry for supper, I shall leave a tantalisingly small amount on the NC bar, just to whet (may be the wrong word to use today) your appetites.
    Come on someone, make me laugh......

  93. At 05:16 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Aunt Dahlia (92): where are you ticklish? I'm not sure if I can quite reach from here but, here goes... Tickle!

  94. At 05:20 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    Oh well, its the drink then.........

  95. At 05:35 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Aunt Dahlia (94): They say it reaches the parts other froggers cannot.

  96. At 05:39 PM on 21 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Aunt Dahlia - Can't promise to make you laugh but as you are having a curry, I thought you might like to see the latest Curry Chart.

    20. I'm a Bhaji Girl - Aqua

    19. Sag Aloo - Black lace

    18. Poppadum Preach - Madonna

    17.Korma Chameleon - Culture Club

    16. Bhaji Trousers - Madness

    15. Dansak Queen - Abba

    14. Korma People - Pulp

    13. Tikka Chance On Me - Abba

    12. When I Phall in Love - Nat King Cole

    11. You Can't Curry Love - Diana Ross and the Supremes

    10. Tears On My Pilau - Kylie Minogue

    9. Brothers in Naans - Dire Straits

    8. Dansak on the Ceiling - Lionel Richie

    7. Tandoori Deliver - Adam and the Ants

    6. Love me Tandoor - Elvis Presley

    5. We Don't Have to Tikka Clothes Off ? Jermaine Jackson

    4. Bye Bye Balti - Bay City Rollers

    3. Bhuna to be Wild - Steppenwolf

    2. Tandoori Deliver - Adam and the Ants

    1. Livin' Dhal - Cliff Richard

  97. At 06:07 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Humph wrote:

    Sorry Aunt D (92) but what does HWMBO mean? I have heard of HWMBOA, as in Be Ordered Around, but I am not sure what HWMBO means.


  98. At 06:38 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I've just been catching up ... it took all afternoon! ... and have the following to say:

    Appy : yes, your mother is right. And so is the HR frogger (was it Peej?). Playing dumb will just drag things out, alas. And don't be fooled by the passive-aggressive tactics .. it's predatory and only looks like anything other than that because it's another woman doing it.

    Nikki : oh dear, sounds as if the Rat Race is treating you the way it used to treat me! (before I sacked the rat) Give me a shout if you want to talk off-lilypad.

    Jason : I agree, you're the one in a strong position this time, and armed with this and the experience of the previous interview you should feel more confident this time around. Oh, and yes you ARE mad... but in a lovely way!

    Val : did you have the right clothes after all? I remember packing 'mares before you went, and worries about being warm enough.

    RJD : welcome back matey.

    Annasee : did you do the outdoor gig after all? BTW I have at last listened to your starring moment on the wireless ... all very articulately expressed, by the way. And not just MPB either!!!

    Now, I'm just back from Tesburyson's with nibbles, shiraz (what else??) and the makings for tomorrow morning's bacon butties. Who's for a bowl of Sensations?

    Fifi xx

  99. At 06:43 PM on 21 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Aunt D -


    If you're looking for colour from mid-summer until the first frosts of autumn, then dahlias are hard to beat. After years in the doldrums, these colourful beauties are back in fashion, with the dark-leaved 'Bishop of Llandaff' leading the way" bbc website

    A relation, surely?! And how delightful to be described as a 'beauty'!!

    tee hee!


  100. At 06:45 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    RJD - grin. The ants got in twice...how about Vindaloo by Fat Les?

  101. At 06:56 PM on 21 Jul 2007, stewart m (for two nights only in birmingham) wrote:

    I'll add my olives from the bradford twice a year outdoor market. Also got some Chilli beer to try. Standard and HOT!!! Rare breed cumberland sausage and creamy lancaashire cheese also.

    The olives are a bit moreish. SWMBO busy reading HP 6. So I'll have an evening to myself once kids are in bed. Off to the new cylcle path for half an hour with kids as its not raining

  102. At 07:40 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    RJD, you're just trying to curry favour, as you know I will not rice to the bhait.
    Humph - stewart for two nights only in Birmingham, has given you the clue - S/He Who Must etc

    NN, how did you know about what I got up to in the Doldrums, I thought I'd paid for silence over most of those regrettable incidents, anyway it was all grossly exaggerated, except the one where he swore he was the Bishop. The rest is so, so true.
    Thank G*d for radio.

  103. At 07:47 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Oooh, Stewart M, you are spoiling us!!!

    We had to make do with steak and a rather spicy savoury rice which has made SO's head sweat.

    Rare breed cumberlands for me every time, given the chance!

    Fifi ;o)

  104. At 07:51 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Dahlia (102) : Now then, you know I raita pun as much as the next girl. But I'd consider it a bhoona fuel draw a halt to this asap!

    Fifi :oD

  105. At 08:22 PM on 21 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Thanks, feefs, had a double whammy last week (back in July) with this year's rating and next year's targets leaving me wondering if I had been hoisted up the flag pole to be dangled by the proverbials in a force 8 gale.

    If I have or if i havent - boof?!! silly people; I very nearly got myself concerned for a wee while, until I realised the REAL point of it all is to go to places like the beach, either here or in July etc, and if that is going against the tide, then thats my thing.

    "some of us are flotsam, and some of us are jetsom"

    another great quote - slightly paraphrased.

    Thanks stewart m the olives ARE great !!

    I'll see your nibbles - and I shall raise you a pyramid of samosa triangles !!


  106. At 08:34 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    * Hastily turns around ... then realises n-n said 'nibbles' and turns back again *

    Nikki, I had the experience of having targets trebled, and budgets obliterated. All because the company directors had had an overdose of testosterone and bought up an American publisher they couldn't afford, and whose magazines they couldn't make profitable.

    All MY fault, apparently.

    In the end I left. Never regretted it, either.

    Fifi ';o)

  107. At 10:17 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Hi Feefs - as per usual, I could have left half the clothes behind. Even though we did have the predicted thunderstorms for the first couple of days, they were extremely well-behaved, ie restricted themselves to overnight behaviour, and also pretty spectacular to watch, what with being caught in the bowl of the mountains. We got stuff like 2 hours of lightning - which you can enjoy if you're not trying to save your pc from self-destructing like what I have had to do so often at home this "summer"

    Groan -- it all seems so long ago. Work has been relentless this week and to make matters worse, I was feeling all virtuous and catching up with something urgent today - a Saturday for heaven's sake - then when I went to post it (having stupidly done it all longhand first), it turned out they didn't want it any more.......grrrrrrrrr. If I hold out this glass, will someone fill it with some kind of liquid anaesthetic please?

  108. At 10:29 PM on 21 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Jason (100) _ Yep, Adam there twice by a mistake of editing, Substitute entry then:

    It's My Chapati and I Cry If I Want To ? - Dave Stewart/Barbara Gaskin

  109. At 11:02 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Hello. You are all very lovely. Good night.

  110. At 11:10 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Val (107) : Oh well, at least you're not underwater right now! [ TOUCH WOOD ]

    How are you doing with your deadlines and stuff, dear?

    I worry!


  111. At 11:16 PM on 21 Jul 2007, truthyness wrote:

    Ed ! Hello : your PM sig tune has caché. What a coup. And thank you, I like the beach tho am primed to watch out for sandstorms now;-)


    Apéritif, 76 and/or Basking Sharks... (or even Pastis 51!!!) remind me now, your beach ... that's in North Korea right?

    Mes hommages... watch out for the nets, see you over on the boules piste (spell that as you like)...

    Talk to yer...


    79, Nice to know you're one of the larks RJD, tho to be honest I get live beeb an hour later over 'ere. Curious to learn what channel you catch Ambridge on, 'cos the melody's pretty much more of same on LW give or take the odd bit of streamling. And that's the point, a rap version of Greensleeves, "House" style lyrics for Hector & Lysander & co might have hit it. I mean had there been some debate or consultation with the license payer.. .This is the age of participative society, (see this blog) happy to discuss... nice talking... take care...


    As for the 5.30 sig tune, petitions abound, as many already know, thousands of supporters have signed. Only it is a blast signing the new PM's one too, especially as he is clearly, a very early riser, and now there's one point we agree on!!!


    Did I hear apéros mentioned... cos I'm parched and would kill for a perroquet... must be all that sand and dust, wonder if there's a beach hut open...

    Peace, love ... mi casa es tu casa.

  112. At 11:28 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Val -- arggh!

    Going to bed now though. See y'tomorrow!

    Fifi xxx

  113. At 11:56 PM on 21 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    What can you mean, n-n? I'm perplexed!
    Think I need to do one of your little jiggs to clear my mind..care to join me?

    my daughter had a similar situation arise last year whilst doing a holiday job. She took a very direct approach with the girl- difficult but it worked. After a frosty couple of days things became 'normal' again and no mention was made by either girl.
    I do feel for you- good luck!


  114. At 08:44 AM on 22 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Morning all, there a shiny object up in the sky in July can anyone suggest what it might be?

    Selection of teas and coffees on the bar, and I'll make full Scottish breakfast on request.

  115. At 09:30 AM on 22 Jul 2007, stewart m (i was not in birmingham but forgot to reset the name thingy) wrote:

    morning all. I see all the olives have gone. almond croissants and chocolate on bar. coffee brewing. Tomato juice anyone? swmbo (easier to say SO) on page 250 of hp7. looks like I'm looking after kids today.

  116. At 10:09 AM on 22 Jul 2007, Humph wrote:

    Can I just say on the radio 4 theme that when I used to be awake early enough to hear it, I quite liked it, but I do not think that its removal is a cause for a campaign. I did, though, mis-read JG’s post (73) to mean that he wanted to replace the Archer’s theme with Anarchy by the Sex Pistols. Having not spotted my mistake, he’s suggestion (88) that their “God Save the Queen” could be used instead - the once most anti-establishment of groups for such an establishment purpose resulted in me choking on a piece of cheese sandwich.

    Aunt D (102) there is my problem. There are shes who must be obeyed. There are hes who may be ordered around. But I am pretty sure that no-where on this whole wide earth is there a he who must be obeyed! It just goes against the natural order of things, somehow.

    Fifi (106), if you mis-heard n-n’s nibbles, what did you think that he meant by I shall raise you a pyramid of samosa triangles?

    FFred (another thread) I have read the first book of both the Thursday Next and Jack Spratt stories by Jasper Fforde and thoroughly enjoyed both of them. I lived in the Reading area for about 14 years and it was great fun being able to picture the various places mentioned in “The Big Over Easy”. I will be starting “The Fourth Bear” later this week when I have finished my present book.


  117. At 10:54 AM on 22 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Fifi - can I just give up now I wonder. I've just received a reply email to my slightly stern one of yesterday, only to discover that they are (choosing?) to misinterpret what I said. The problem is there are too many bosses - Report Development and Marketing...and I've found meself stuck in 'tmiddle.

    Now I remember why I gave up paid work 20 years ago. Harrumph.

  118. At 12:32 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Truthyness wrote:

    Humph, pleased to meet, (116) If I might continue... on one hand it is possible that beach bums may not, by their nature, be inclined to much activity of any kind, On the other the state of relaxation sand and sea induce might spark action in another place at an another time. Elsewhere, lots of sigtunecarers have pulled out their fingers and campaigned. I was wondering why the cut off date for the PM's petition was Nov 21? What happens after? Does he axe Damazer if he hasn't got his way? Hé hé! nice thought! Does he resign from office on the grounds he's not fit to rule Britannia with out it? Or might he shut down the Beeb altogether and be done with it and just have the 5 minute medley streamed in a gloriuos continuum throughout cyberspace for all the world to hear? Could be worth (for any of the over active amongst us) writing in for answers!

    Peace, Love... urgh it's bucketing down again 'ere... curses, and I've lost me wellies looks as if I'll have to pass on that market!.

  119. At 01:15 PM on 22 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:


    Well, as was about almost a week since my last, are you really telling me (and the entire froggers beach!) that there isn't anything embarrassing that you've done that you can't think of??!?!?!??

    tee hee!! thought not!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    and sorry I misssed the litttle jiggs last night, I had already crashed and burned, and was safely sound asleep in a hummock, (its like a hammock, but it sort of hums you to sleep), owing to a rather insufficient tollerance to the ol' ambre necter.

    (apologies to all for the copious idiosyncratic spellings (CIS's) in this post - must get the New Blog Prince to add a spell checking facility...)


    PS can I echo (109) where appy wrote something to the effect of the lovilenss of you all?!!! -liness of you all?!!! - you all?!!! all?!! all?! all?!!!


  120. At 01:50 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    n-n, if you use the latest FireFox, there's a built in spell-checker that works on the boxes here. It underlines al the "questionable" words as you go :-)

  121. At 02:32 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    SO went shopping just before I got back from Scotland, the sweetie! One of his purchases was a pack of 'Sicilian' sausages. Lots of yummy things like garlic, sundried toms, mozzarella, basil.

    Virtuous grill-up anyone? We also have drycure bacon, free range eggs, cheery cherry toms, courgette, shrooms with garlic....

    We'd better ALL have the garlic though!

    Fifi xx

  122. At 02:35 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Yeh ff but it dun't kno the difference between al and all! Hee hee xx

  123. At 04:09 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Truthyness wrote:

    111. Oops, typo, correcting!
    cachet.... duuuh!

  124. At 04:19 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Right - specially for Gillian :o) I've struggled through the vagaries of the flickring place and put up a selection of snaps. Sadly my ineptitude found me sending quite a few more than intended, so don't feel embarassed about falling asleep halfway through! By the way - can anyone tell me how to delete photos from there? I can't seem to work it out, a little knowledge of technology is a dangerous thing!

    Fi - those sausages were fab, hope you have another panful on the go? oops, they weren't all for me then? and shall I have room for the seafood risotto this evening? Excuse the greed, blame a friend of mine for suggesting earlier that I take a glass of wine into the bath to de-stress from July. (That was after I got an email from the boss of bosses telling me off for working on a Sunday! Big brother is everywhere on the internet eh? Sheesh, some folk are never happy)

  125. At 05:47 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Val, you're in luck. I found another pack at the back of the fridge ... must have been an offer on at Tesburyson's. No wonder my fridge smells so garlicky! I warn you though, I've had the most wonderfully corrosive garlic burps all afternoon. ;o)

    Fifi xx

  126. At 05:52 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    I have sad news.

    My courgette was ravaged overnight by marauding Hells Slugs on chopper bikes, high on crack cocaine and sea salt.

    I have ceremonially buried it in the compost heap and have employed 24 hour security for it's siblings.

  127. At 05:57 PM on 22 Jul 2007, eddie mair wrote:

    Jason (126) I have sad news also. My courgette was ravaged overnight too.

  128. At 06:06 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Jason (126) and Eddie (127) : Further sad news.

    My courgette, a bought one, will be ravaged later this evening in a delicious chicken stir-fry.



  129. At 06:56 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Jason, Eddie - there's a plague of the b*****s, also snails, and unless you do stand guard overnight and pick them off by hand (yuk, no thanks) the best I can suggest is beer traps.

    My garden is now dotted with little green objects full of the golden nectar, and rapidly also full of fermenting slugs. It's saved some things, but I've lost lots, even lettuce growing in a box in the greenhouse. And there's blight on the potatoes.

    Thanks heavens we're not actually dependent on what I grow to save us from starvation.

  130. At 07:16 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    Is it me or should (127) be at the naughty corner!? Its me isnt it. Oh well I'll be off then.

    My strawberries (well the two ripening ones) are also half eaten.

  131. At 08:08 PM on 22 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Ap (109) "Hello. You are all very lovely. Good night."
    You're quite nice yourself, you know!

    And for all you lot who have had their courgettes savaged, the ones I got in Sannesberry's are fine!

  132. At 08:26 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Stewart M, I pride myself on having a pretty filthy mind. And I never spotted that!

    But since you mentioned it ...

    Budge up on the naughty step will ya? I've brought stir-fry for two, and a well-chilled sauv blanc.


    Fifi ;o)

  133. At 08:49 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    eddie (127): far too much information, but I hope you and your partner enjoyed it!

  134. At 09:59 PM on 22 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Val P (124) - Well you did post a few pictures didn't you? Enjoyed them all and they remnded me of a holiday at Lake Como a few years ago, although I have to say that your place looked a little bit better.

    Question: Which country and place have you most enjoyed a holiday?

  135. At 10:26 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    Fnarr Fnarr

    By Heck fifi I'll take that as a compliment.

    Cab/Shiraz anyone

  136. At 10:32 PM on 22 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    apropos of nothing really, I had ten (10) TEN swans in my garden this afternoon, 2 large white one, a male and a female i think, and eight (8) EIGHT ! large ungainly brown cygnets, all nearly as tall as their mother ( if she was their mother) ( if it was a female)...

    They walked up from the river, and lounged about on the patio, sunning themselves for about 15 or 20 mins, before waddleing back off in a line to the river again!

    How fantastic is that?!?!

    Didnt have a camera, sadly.



  137. At 10:32 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Jason, Eddie, very sorry to hear about your beloved vegetables.

    Have much to do tonight so just a quick "hello" from me to all.

  138. At 10:46 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    Enough about the Courgettes now. Though I always hope :-)

    I've just plied SO with some more wine. No shirt ironed for me tomorrow as she is making a great effort to finish HP7 before bed.
    Her penance will be that we will go camping with some of eldests daughters school friends in Sept. Eldest will just be 7!
    SO not really a canvas girl. I'm not that much of a canvas freak but think we will cope for two nights. Tent and portable stove bought today. I baulked at the electric hook up kit as that was just a bit too much to spend when this may be just a one off event. If its a sucess than a further £80 is possibly worth justifying. Kids think that the idea of camping will be great. That may all change if its still raining in September.

    RJD 134 Is your question open to anyone.
    If so Zimbabwe 10 years ago was a great holiday. Safari on banks of Zambezi. helicopter over Victoria Falls, we baulked at white water rafting. Climbing Mn Inyangai. Followed by Malaysia, Penang Then KL and Cameron Highlands visiting a tea plantation.
    European destinations is Venice is favorite then Paris then Rome
    UK you cant beat Northumberland

  139. At 11:02 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    RJD: If you're happy to open up your question to more than Val...

    Peyia, near Paphos in Cyprus, every time we've been. It's expensive but the people are sooo lovely.

    And the time I borrowed a guitar, and a friend who was staying with us for part of our time there brought a set of guitar strings, and I did a wee singalong for a GB coach party at a local taverna ... oh it was good!

    Fifi xx

  140. At 11:03 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Selkius Piscenus wrote:

    The people I met in Finland tell me that trolls aren't necessarily nasty (think Finn Family Moomintroll, it seems, or house-elves) and I think the only bridges we have on the beach are the ones we build between us if we've had misunderstandings, and that means there's nowhere for the nasty sort of troll to happen around these parts, so I wanted to make a small suggestion. What frogs don't like is pike, as far as I know. We might consider calling the things that arrive and try to eat the Frog, pike instead of trolls?

    Only a thought.

  141. At 11:04 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    RJD - Corsica, driving up a mountain to swim in deep forest-fringed river-pools as the water cascaded down the mountain from one pool to another, to another. Really hot weather, really freezing water, a picnic of French munchies and children a lot younger than they are now! Absolute bliss!

  142. At 11:16 PM on 22 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    Val P (124) Thanks for the pics - beautiful! I hope the memories they brought to mind (and of course the glass of wine!) led to a lovely, relaxed Sunday afternoon.

  143. At 12:00 AM on 23 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Gillian - Never been to Corsica but always wanted to go! I think you have just raised its appeal!

  144. At 12:08 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Gossipmistress wrote:

    Val (124) lovely photos! I don't know why you want to delete any, but it's v easy - just sign in, choose the photo you want to delete and choose 'delete' from underneath the photo (it's in blue).

    Well what have I missed? I see Eddie & Jason are still on the Naughty Step and they seem to have secured the Pimms. And what is Jason wearing on his head??

    RJD (134) it's a close call between Torello (near Amalfi southern Italy) or Dorset as a child!

    Sorry I've not been around much - work has been, well, unrepeatable really, and am just gearing up for the Cornish Music Festival I help with, which starts next week. So if anyone's around St Endellion between 30th July & 7th August, call in and see me! It's a full orchestra & choir & fab soloists in a tiny little church doing all sorts, including chamber music & a full opera! So I may not be around after tuesday for a few weeks if I can't find a computer to borrow.

    In the meantime, I have 180 people to fit into 166 beds...hmm maybe I'll just go for a lie-down in this hammock first Zzzzzzzz

  145. At 12:24 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Hi guys - yes Gilianian, the glass of wine did the trick, then we had supper with bro and wife, and further glasses of wine did more tricks.....

    Holidays, RJD, gosh - it would have to be the Balearics, 20, single again, carefree etc etc.

    Hmm, enough of that, Paxos in the early 90's (though I think, Molly, it hasn't changed much?) with SO and 2 tinies, and friends with similar family. Beautiful place, beautiful people.

    Or maybe Venice? Like walking onto a filmset every time you turn a corner, 1980 then 2004, but no change, timeless. Manna for the eyes.

    Ach, as I've said before, I hate lists and I hate choosing. Any holiday is great, even if it's just a day away from the mundane. Had a great weekend near Stockport recently, and that was all about friends :o)

  146. At 12:34 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    RJD: looks like many of us are delighting in your challenge, you lovely man you!



  147. At 12:38 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    It's 12:40 and we're watching DamianII. Scary!!!


  148. At 01:25 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    RJD & all,

    My son and his SO just got in the canoe and towed a wee inflatable full of stuff down river to a south facing solway beach (about four miles) and camped for a week. They enjoyed it so much they did it again this summer.

    East or west, home is best (and cheapest!)


    Brilliantly hot today (Sunday) and we had a dozen folk for a bbq, badminton, t.tennis and considerable liquid fare. Schadenfreude for all the soggy southerners ;-)

  149. At 08:31 AM on 23 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Some great holiday ideas here.

    My best was was in Connemara in the West of Ireland when the children were young. Two weeks of sun, empty beaches, playing in hayfields, walks in the hills - just magic!

  150. At 08:41 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Of childhood holidays, one spent on the Solway in a huge Victorian Scottish Baronial house that had become a wonderful shabby family hotel.

    Lots of children allowed to run free. In wet weather we had a treasure hunt, found secret panels (cupboard under the wide staircase, bit disappointingly full of junk!), polished the lino floor by pulling each other feet first at high speed across it, took turns to bang the huge temple gong in the hall to call everyone to lunch.

    One day they made us all sandwiches and a large party made expedition to a nearby beach only accessible on foot, and the highlight was seeing a hedgehog run away from us on its hindlegs - no wonder there are tales of little people. Magic.

  151. At 09:06 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Here's my suggestions for holidays:

    UK: Go narrow-boating on the Oxfordshire canal & Thames. All really relaxing, plus some very good pubs along the route.

    Ireland (particularly enjoyed Cork when I went there, plus all round the southern edge).
    Riga (Latvia) Very welcoming
    Tallinn (Estonia) Just got back from there. Loved it
    Prague (Czech) A bit too overrun these days, unfortunately, but still worth a trip

    Further afield:
    Vancouver. I managed to add five days of holiday to a business trip. A gorgeous place :-)

  152. At 09:49 AM on 23 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Morning - just had a quick scan through so sorry if I missed anything pertinent -

    Fifi - thats such good news! Big hugs and fingers crossed the inhaler sorts things out.

    Appy - has she been bothering you much over the weekend?? it is possible to get her number barred by your operator if it gets too much. Take care xx

    Have left a Brown Betty of Twi***ngs Everyday on the bar, along with some fresh coffee and caff free alts. And I may nip out in to July for some saffron cake- any takers?

    PS Haven't checked the rest of the blog yet, is it back to normal out there??

  153. At 10:08 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    What a lovely task!
    For me, a field of poppies in Charente near our dear little campsite. Feeling a little queezy.
    Three guesses- not the wine...

    Val P- adored Paxos- lovely Villa Eliot- unchanged, I'm sure. I'll try and post a picture.If Marc agrees.

    You're right, Val- they were all wonderful in different ways.

    n-n- It's a fair cop!
    Lovely , lovely 'picture' of Summer swans.


  154. At 10:35 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Good day one and all!

    I'm feeling better after a fairly relaxed weekend. Many thanks for all the kind wishes, they helped a lot.

    Just stretching out on a sun lounger for the moment...

    ;o) []

  155. At 10:37 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Oh, forgot to say:

    Welcome back Feefs, and best wishes Jason - you'll get this one I'm sure.

    ;o) []

  156. At 10:54 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Can I add this pot of green tea to the elevenses tray? I've also got a selection on muffins and danish pastries for those who want them...

  157. At 11:29 AM on 23 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    My holiday didn't pass censor. Second try.

    My favorite place to holiday is a bit of a sad and predictable one. It is Walt Disney World, Florida. Not "Orlando" or even "Florida" - just the bit belonging to the mouse.

    Why? Well it's where Mrs G and I had our honeymoon accompanied by "her" kids who were then 9 and 7. We went back October 2006 with "our" daughter, then 7. Mrs G and I went back alone for a week last year to celebrate my 40th. We are going back soon with a big bunch of the outlaws.

    The real "why" is it is a brilliant place to spend time with your kids. It takes a bit of researching and planning to get the best out of it.

    I apologise in advance for single-handedly bringing on global warming...

  158. At 12:44 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Anne P (150,

    Of course, I know Orchardton House very well, it being within walking distance, and the growing-up place of my son's best mate and later (while an artists' studio and living complex) of many mates including his SO. Many a party, many a bang of the gong, many a walk to the beach(es).

    The B****ws are now housed in the stable cottage complex and have the walled garden as an outdoor theatre, where we recently saw Arthur Miller's "Broken Glass", set in the weeks following Krystallnacht. A brilliant place!

    Sadly the big house is now owned by an English troll (truly so), who has built a high fence all round, keeps huge aggressive dogs and is at war with her neighbours. A perfect example of how not to integrate. Has changed the sign at the roadend to read Orchardton Hall, no less, and hopes to re-sell for a huge profit.

    Prospective purchasers beware: You'll need a fair bit of extra cash after the price, just to sort out the much-delayed maintenance tasks. Your new neighbours for miles around will welcome the change of occupant.


  159. At 01:52 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Thanks for that Ed I. Yes that is the house - bit out of my price bracket I'm afraid. Hope you end up with a better neighbour though.

  160. At 02:21 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Anne (& any others interested)

    Next event

    For interest, David Bower played the deaf part in 4 weddings. Isolte, his SO, is a Cuban dance person. The event will be well worth travelling further than we'll have to, especially if the weather's fine.

    Link to theatre at my name above.


  161. At 03:43 PM on 23 Jul 2007, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    FF (52):

    (Yes, I know, but this is a huge beach and I've been watching all my sandcastles get washed away...)

    I can thoroughly recommend the "Fruit" as a good computer, I currently have... um... one at work, two active at home plus one Powerbook laptop which has been used most days for over four years and still gives satisfaction.

    The Bacmooks were a wee bit iffy when they first came out; a few had heat problems and the like - but they seem to have settled down now.

    I second the notion to get extra memory from a *good* non-Fruit supplier, but you have to make sure you get the right configuration when you order your Bacmook. A single one-G stick should let you buy a cheap one-G stick elsewhere and stick it in. Getting two 512M sticks put in at the factory means losing one of them to replace it with your externally bought 1G stick. (Note: I'm not sure how many slots the Bacmook has at the moment, it may have more than two, but the principle applies.)

  162. At 04:16 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Just to echo The Stainless One about non-PC computers...

    My Osteopath recently gave up on a very expensive laptop that he'd had nothing but trouble with since day one, running XP. He bought a book of the fruit and has been singing its praises to me at every visit since. All the other protective rain gear type computer owners I have known have sworn by them - instead of swearing at that. I would also definately agree with the concensus about memory versus optical drives. Memory is relatively cheap and easy to fit retrospectively, optical drives as an add on can be problematic, so best to have it in there from the start.

    Of course results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion and other technologies are available! However, I'm seriously considering buying Mrs Wonko a (second-hand!) book of the fruit for her Christmas gift, providing gold reserves permit.

    ;o) []

  163. At 04:24 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Survived day one at the post office. No complete disasters, as far as I know, but no doubt someone will helpfully ring me tomorrow from head office to tell me I've done it all wrong.

    The worst of it is, there was no internet access! My laptop got into the wi-fi network OK, but refused to go online. Even the resident computer wouldn't go online, so there was no chance of a Plan B.

    A very unproductive and boring fortnight looms.



  164. At 06:53 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:


  165. At 07:48 PM on 23 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Well done fifi ! First day?! How many stamps ??!

    Oh, sorry, you were delivering ?!!? No wonder you couldnt get on the internet, the cable probably didnt reach...

    (tee hee!)


  166. At 08:33 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Many many stamps, n-n, including some of the Horry Patter ones. There are 7 different ones, one for each of the books. They're a bit of a nuisance to account for on the computer though.

    Thank goodness I wasn't delivering. We had torrential rain and thunder today!


  167. At 08:37 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Frances O wrote:

    Hi, beachfrogfriends, anyone got a spare hug going?

    I heard today that (yet another) friend has died.

    Granted, I have been lucky enough to have friends older (and younger) than me, but it does hurt.

    That's at least two funerals for this year*, then, after the two last year.

    $odding angry with stupid death tonight.

    *One has been given until September.

  168. At 08:52 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    fidi, Are you doing car tax as well? My receptionist had a long wait today when she went out for stamps. Car tax was the reason. I trust it was not 'cos of you making the computers go down ;-)

    re Bacmooks and Fruit computers in general. THey run of intel chips now so will The pomme company consider selling the operating system. I suppose they then loose control of the hardware essentially what happened with IMB and DOS (which as we all know became windoze)

    Should do some work but a 10% Trappist beer is calling me to prayer.

  169. At 09:02 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    Frances O. (167). always hugs here. Big squeeeeze from me.

  170. At 09:22 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Big hug Frances (167). So sorry.

    Witchi (152), Much better today thanks, She was only around for an hour and I politely but firmly got on with my work. I know it won't be that easy when she's there all day but it was a good start.

  171. At 09:42 PM on 23 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    For Frances O:


    nikki noodle

  172. At 10:21 PM on 23 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Oh, Frances, I do feel for you. It's horrid and stupid and unfair.

    (((frug frug frug)))

    Appy, it sounds as if you've got a handle on the situation now. Just stay firm now. She'll get the message.

    Stewart, no road tax for me. Just bills and pensions and lots of parcels. My brain is bleeding. And I have to do it all again tomorrow...

    I think I'll just have a wee snoozette on this new stripey hammock, with this lovely glass of shiraz I found on the bar.



  173. At 11:43 PM on 23 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    In case you've wondered about my lack of contributions over the weekend, let's just say I bought a book in Morrisons for £4.99 (RRP £17.99) and read it. All 607 pages worth.
    Well, about half of it on Saturday, a quarter on Sunday and a quarter this evening.

    Now, having prioritised that above dinner, I'm hungry and tired, yet in my infinite stupidity have postponed dinner whilst I catch up with the frog and facebook :)

  174. At 12:01 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    Would you believe? Malicious!

  175. At 12:19 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Oh chums, ain't it awful to want and want something one knows one cannot have?

    Paas me a large gin to kill the yearning?

  176. At 08:41 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    Most of us find ourslves in that place at some time.
    But life is so short and full of surprises.
    Take heart.
    Your posting made me cry.


  177. At 08:44 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    (((((FRUG FRUG)))))) for Frances.

    Appy, I think it's probably a little early now for the gin, but I've put it aside behind the bar for when you feel the need...

    SSC & Wonko, thanks for the feedback. I think I'll be going for the mid-range with burning capabilities, and look to add the memory later on. At least I'll be able to save about £50 on it, as I've found out that work have a scheme giving discounts. Bonus!

  178. At 09:07 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    Frances O

    Awful. Sorry. Big frug.


  179. At 09:24 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Appy (175): You know you only have to ask.

    Okay, okay, I'm taking myself to the naughty step.

  180. At 09:46 AM on 24 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Frances and Appy big big frugs to both of you (((((( ))))))

    I hope today is a little brighter in both your worlds x

  181. At 10:40 AM on 24 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Early elevenses all round - cake, coffee and doughnuts for them wot like 'em,

    ...and tea and chocy biccys for the rest,

    ...and i really fancy a rather large mushroom omelette and chips, oooh she's gorgeous!!



  182. At 11:05 AM on 24 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:







  183. At 12:09 PM on 24 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Rain? What is this all about? This is Northern Ireland - we don't do rain in July! Think I'll stay here for a bit. Any doughnuts left?

    Ap - Cheer up or I'll kidnap your teddy bear!

  184. At 12:15 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Oh dear, sounds like there is a severe need for frugs all round.


    Hope all in need of said frugs feel better soon. I'm having a bit of a day myself back in July.

    To help all and sundry in this regard luncheon today is chicken breasts poached in a white wine and thyme stock, wrapped in bacon with a herb crust, served with caramelised onions and red cabbage and saute potatoes. Afters comes in the form of crepes made to order with a variety of sweet fillings with real vanilla ice cream.

    Tuck in...

    ;o) []

    PS I won't be frogging for a while after tomorrow - I'm going to be staffing at the 21st World Scout Jamboree and won't have a lot of time to visit the Beach. Have a lovely time y'all and I'll see you somewhere around the second week of August.

  185. At 12:39 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Sorry guys, I shouldn't have posted that last night -- Frances is much more in need of frugs than me. I had a much better day yesterday by dealing firmly with the office pest (although she wasn't here for long) and also making a small change to my working arrangements which, if it happens as it should, will help with that as well as other things.

    Things are good today (the office pest isn't even here yet -- hurrah!) and my yearning post wasn't really meant to be too serious. Think of me yearning for Capatin Jack and you'll get the right feel.

    Molly (176) Sorry for making you cry. You're right -- it does pass.

    Fearless (177), Thanks! Can I have some with my lunch d'you think?

    Jason (179), Bad boy. One day I shall and then what will you do??? ;-)

    Witchi (180) Thank you.

    RJD (183) You leave my teddy bear out of this! I do have a lovely little teddy bear actually. He was a gift from a very special friend and, if I were to lose him, there could well be yearning there too...

    Seriously now, more hugs for Frances. Death of a loved one is the worst thing in the world.

  186. At 12:49 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    That was deeeeelish!!!
    What's for supper, before you go?


  187. At 12:51 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    That was deeeeelish!!!
    What's for supper, before you go?


  188. At 01:16 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Help yourself, Appy :-)

    Have just looked outside in July, and it's warm and sunny!!! Now, bear in mind that where I am is less than 5 miles away from one of the Oxon "hotspots" mentioned on the news yesterday (the one beginning with A for those who are interested) and the only signs I've seen all day of the flooding has been the tide mark in the carpary from all the leaves and other such debris that were in the "lake" that was the carpark on Friday. In fact, I came over this way from home on Sunday, and you wouldn't have thought there was any danger of flooding even then...

    Ah well, time to wander back to July :(

  189. At 01:19 PM on 24 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Ap - From one little bear to a story about quite a large collection:

    A man meets a gorgeous woman in a bar. They talk, they connect, they end up leaving together.

    They get back to her place, and as she shows him around her flat, he notices that her bedroom is completely packed with teddy bears.
    Hundreds of small bears on a shelf all the way along the floor, medium sized ones on a shelf a little higher and huge bears on the top shelf along the wall.

    The man is kind of surprised that this woman would have a collection of teddy bears, especially one that's so extensive, but he decides not to mention this to her.

    After a night of passion, as they are lying together in the afterglow, the man rolls over and asks, smiling, "Well, how was it?".

    She replied, "You may select any prize from the bottom self."

  190. At 01:31 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Appy (185): what I always do - run away and hide!

  191. At 01:40 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Molly - glad you enjoyed it!

    For supper I was considering a game (pigeon, rabbit and venison) terrine to start. This to be followed by Pork medallions with mustard mashed potato, buttered fine green beans and served with a cider and bramley apple sauce. Or lamb chops with dauphinoise potatoes, carrot and swede mash with a red wine and recurrant sauce.

    Haven't quite decided about pudding, currently toying with summer pudding served with creme anglaise or a trio of chocolate and strawberry tartletts with pistachio ice cream.

    Orders please...

    ;o) []

  192. At 01:48 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    Frances, I don't have an email address to do this 'quietly', but I'm really so sorry to hear your news.

  193. At 01:51 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Wonko (191): Seriously impressive menus.

    Tonight I am cooking "Netty Surprise", named after Annette, my Sister-in-law, by Mrs G as she said it was a surprise that she could cook anything (aren't Sisters lovely to each other?)

    It is chicken breasts stuffed with Le Roule substitute and wrapped in straky bacon, baked in the oven. To be served with potato wedges and peas. Followed by rhubarb and ginger crumble and custard.

  194. At 01:58 PM on 24 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Wonko - I don't suppose the Scouts will be lucky enough to find you in charge of catering at the Jamboree?

    I'll have the game terrine and then the pork medallions. Tartletts for pudding, I think. Blimey, I've just had my lunch and I'm hungry already!

  195. At 02:35 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    RJD - order duly noted, table for 7:30pm good for you?

    I'm not doing the catering, no. I'm not sure even the best chef could cope with 40,000 young people, 15,000 adult leaders and staff and probably another 50,000 day visitors! Given that there will be people from all but 6 Nations present, making something everyone can/will eat can be quite a challenge!

    What's done is that the youngsters camp in units (typically 24 Scouts and 4 Leaders), and they cook their own food, the ingredients for which are provided from central distribution areas. Staff and Service Team are centrally catered. Each sub-camp will have a day where they give everyone else a flavour of their own country, and usually means food!

    Oh, I've just noticed I didn't offer a choice for the starter. Grilled langoustines with lime and chilli dressing I think.

    ;o) []

  196. At 03:00 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Jason - that sounds like a good hearty meal you've got there! I'm a strong believer in simple food, well cooked and well presented - and plenty of it - is what you need. Glad you like the menu!

    I've always enjoyed cooking, but I could never work in a kitchen as I'd hate the pressure.

    ;o) []

  197. At 03:11 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    RJD (189) Tee hee!

    Jason (193), In this part of the world "Netty" is a coloquial term for a lavatory. I suppose it would be quite surprising to find a well-presented two-course dinner in there...

    Ooh Wonko (195) Could I have some of those langoustines with lime and chilli dressing please? They sound divine.

  198. At 03:33 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Frances O wrote:

    Thank you for the frugs, dear froggers.

    Have had lots of 'talking therapy' with friends, which has helped a lot.

    Am a bit less bitter today.

    Witchi - will post a bit later about my scribbling (your 8) (not you're 8). Thanks for the suggestions.

  199. At 03:49 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    My pleasure Appy, here you go. There's a green leaf salad, fresh ground black pepper and a little mayonaise on the side if you want them.

    ;o) []

  200. At 05:25 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Frances O wrote:

    Thank you for the frugs, dear froggers.

    Have had lots of 'talking therapy' with friends, which has helped a lot.

    Am a bit less bitter today.

    And a bit more better?

    Witchi - will post a bit later about my scribbling (your 8) (not you're 8). Thanks for the suggestions.

  201. At 05:56 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    Wonko- not bad, I suppose. For a Tuesday.
    A table for 8 available?


  202. At 06:27 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Appy (197): Two courses? Two courses? Oh dear. That would explain the silence when it was all on the one plate...

  203. At 06:46 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Now why have I got this piece of ginger root, unused and sitting on the chopping board. Oh...erm, it was just rhubarb crumble and custard. No ginger.

    The summer holidays have already sapped my brain.

  204. At 07:49 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Well, day two in the post office was considerably less stressful than day one. The sunshine helped quite a bit.

    I can't believe I didn't check the Beach before heating up my home made chilli though! Wonko, you are a chef par excellence, and you'll have to hurry back soon to provide yet more temptatious delightifications!

    I'll just have a touch of the ice cream on its own, if I may. Mmmmmm!


  205. At 08:32 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Well would you believe, the first and almost only decent day in July, all set to get on with weeding the allotment and then get emergency call which meant spending the whole day indoors in a seriously overheated house waiting for doctor to attend aged parent. Eventually, though not without additional phone calls help was forthcoming, medical assistance obtained and emergency declared over for the moment. Weeds will just have to go on growing and at least I finished knitting a sock.

    Phew...sorry about that...trivial compared with the problems of others, just needed to get it off my chest.

    Will try to catch up properly later.

    ((((frugs)))) to all who need them and another bottle of my sloe gin on the bar.

  206. At 09:46 PM on 24 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    A slightly quieter day than usual for me - I managed to clear my support call list twice :)
    (I work for a business-oriented IT company)

    It helped that there were several quick calls, such as Vodafone 3G card playing up (sorry, we don't support that - but here's the contact details for Vodafone [not telling them extracting useful information from them is like extracting blood from a stone]) or Windows crashes on startup (raise an engineer visit to reinstall Windows).

    Then you get the bizzare:
    "The electricity board are cutting off our supply in a few days time - what do we need to do to the network?" (Well, you can either turn everything off yourself or wait for the electricity board to do it for you)
    Customer called stating their internet access had gone down - then only after Telewest have confirmed the line is dead do the company mention they've had a new roof and the contractors cut through the line - which is now hanging out of the window - could that have anything to do with it?
    "I keep getting these popups and they're really irritating" (Hmmm, what have you been downloading? Your computer's infested with 58 different adware/spyware applications...)

    There, that's off my chest.

    Now to exchange my suit for shorts, don the shades, grab a Pimms from the bar (don't worry, I've added another 5 bottles to the stock) and soak up the sun on a nearby dune :)
    Just don't expect me to give any computer support whilst I'm here :)

  207. At 09:59 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Oh, Anne. Parents, eh?

    (((frug))) right back atcha!

    Fifi xx

  208. At 10:16 PM on 24 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Oooh, great excitement here at Fifi Towers:

    ...TWO hedgehogs!!!! pretending they're not on the patio, burying their snouts in the herby border.

    I quickly switched off the PIR light so they wouldn't run back to the safety of the shed before scoffing the rest of Daisy T Cat's leftovers.

    Haven't seen the wee hoggies for months, and I'd say these are this year's babies judging by the size.

    Big smiles on the faces of Fifi and and SO tonight.

    Fifi ;o)

  209. At 11:22 PM on 24 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Aperitif (185)

    Sometimes words do not say anything, as you know ((x)).


  210. At 01:33 AM on 25 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Thank you Wonko (199), how lovely!

    Jason (202) Hahahaha! At least they weren't in one "bowl"... You do entertain me :-)

    Anne (205), Big hug.

    Mittfh (206) Tee hee :-)

    Mr Noodle (209), Thank you. You are kind.

    Champagne for everyone! I insist!

  211. At 08:25 AM on 25 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    mittfh (206): It is jolly bad form to discuss IT support problems and make reference to stupid users in a public forum, you know.

    Now that is out of the way, supporting teachers can be completely maddening. Everything from "oh, does it matter if the plug is turned off" through "but I already changed the ink cartidges" (yes, but you didn't put the right colours in the right slots and you didn't take the wrapper off that lets the ink out).

    I particularly love interactive whiteboards. The LEA decided that teachers should use their "Laptops for Teachers" laptops so that they could prepare their work at home and deliver in school "seamlessly". Except the whiteboard drivers are fussy and fail next time you use the whiteboard if you start the laptop without it connected. And then there is the problem of sound - which hole to stick the plug, controlling the volume at the laptop, controlling the volume at the amp/speaker, ensuring anytihing is plugged in...

    Three of my favorites war stories. The best was a local secondary school moving into new, swish PFI premises before I went freelance. They had employed an expensive consultant to work with the education authority, the school and the developers to sort out all the IT stuff. Big building, three "network rooms" full of patch panels and switches. Among the minutiae of ****-ups was the biggy - no one had put any electricity into the network rooms so you couldn't plug anything in!

    A close second. A local authority "expert" supported one of my schools in setting up an IT suite. Fair enough, he was free to the school whereas I would have costed an hourly rate to do it. He procured some really nice PCs, the head chose a lovely set of furniture. The problem arose when I was asked to set up the PCs and join them to the network. What network?

    Hastily they got a company in to install a network as an add-on to the existing one. 20 network points well over 100m from the main network. So they used one Cat5e connection rather than fibre.....

    Finally, a school had 30 laptops delivered for teachers. They sat in the head teacher's office for an age. Finally I asked him when he was going to let me start getting them ready for issue so I could avoid dealing with 30 at once. "They are ready," he pronounced, "there is nothing for you to do to them."

    They were issued. The following week everyone wanted their machines adding to the network, have these bits of software installed, etc. Then the problem was spotted - they had been supplied with a "standard" image and it had a virus, no recent windows updates, chronically out of date anti-virus and no automatic updates set up. Every single one was infected with a work that then infected the entire school network.

    Had to shut everything down, clean each machine in turn and then bring the network back up. That was when I discovered that a teacher had another computer in a sideroom that no one knew was hooked up to the network. It reinfected everything and we had to start again.

    Right in the midst of all this a teacher brought me some software she needed installing "this break time" on 30 machines to teach with in under 20 minutes. She seemed unpursuaded when I told her that she may not even have machines to use. "Oh, but I must. It's in my planning."

  212. At 09:28 AM on 25 Jul 2007, Belinda wrote:

    Oh dear.

    I've just been asked to take more leave from work as I am "not quite up to par" as yet. It seems I was too optimistic when I reported that I could work and undergo the treatment at the same time. I suspect my goof last week where I had an entire and very personal telephone conversation with a patient, only to realise afterwards that I was talking to completely the wrong person, had something to do with it. :)

    So from tomorrow, I am back as a whining lady of leisure until my brain comes back from the planet zog.

    Big frugs to Appy, Frances, Anne and Fifi and her post office. I also never sent my condolences to jonnie over his thief, so I hope that everything is ok.

  213. At 10:20 AM on 25 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Belinda - optimism is good! But do take care of yourself petal x

    Any of Appy's champers left, could do with a pick me up this morning!

  214. At 10:46 AM on 25 Jul 2007, Gossipmistress wrote:

    Just popping in to say goodbye for a bit...off to Cornwall (St Endellion) for 3 weeks. In fact for the next 2 days I'll be doing this .... squeezing 180 bums into 166 beds, without putting 2 people who don't know each other in a double bed!
    After that, 2 weeks of rehearsals & concerts then a week off - bliss!

    If I find a computer I'll drop by! Enjoy yourselves in the sun on the beach, have a few Pimms for me, look after yourselves, have fun on the naughty step Appy FFred, Val etc & I'll see you soon!!xxx

  215. At 11:11 AM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    It's that long since I've been on the naughty step I have forgotten what it looks like. I wonder what I could do to get sent there again?

  216. At 11:12 AM on 25 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    GM - I shall try and pop down. I say that every year and something always pops up. But now I have more of a reason to go! :)

    Hope it goes well bed wise, sure the music will look after itself!

  217. At 11:13 AM on 25 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Sorry for Chef's sudden disappearance yesterday, that cruel, heartless virus that's going round called "work" intervened!

    Molly - Not bad, not bad!? Well, I'll just have to do better today I guess... You're a hard task master! ;o)

    Feefs - You're very kind, hope the ice cream was still frozen enough when you got some. Glad to hear you had a better day yesterday by the way. Hope today goes smoothly!

    Anne - Frugs for you, sorry about your stressful day. {{{{FRUG}}}}

    Mittfh - Your stories remind me of the possibly made up case of the person who rang up "technical support" sitting in the dark. They wondered why their PC wasn't working. The support person eventually got out of them that the electricity had gone on the whole street, so unsurprisingly nothing electrical worked!

    Jason - love those stories too, they sound entirely typical.

    Belinda - You sound like you need a Frug too - {{{FRUG}}}}

    Gossipmistress - have a good break!


    ;o) []

  218. At 11:14 AM on 25 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    Well I daresay you're all dying to know how dire it is her in Gloucestershire. Vile, isn't the word. The three main economic centres- Gloucester, Cheltenham and Stroud, have no water, so there is no way people can go to work, if they can get there. An we get irate people on the phone demanding to know why they can't speak to the person they want to speak to. I think they think once the main water subsides, life goes on. It doesn't. Everything is disrupted, disjointed and uncomfortable.
    We still have water, but are eking it out, knowing that others in the village will have filled their baths, and every other container, against the inevitable. Our main routes East are closed, we may have to learn Welsh, and frankly the short term profit driven management of all the bodies concerned in handling these disasters means we are at the total mercy of who either don't, or cannot care.
    We really are turning into a third world country.
    Yours, in despair.

  219. At 11:45 AM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Aunt Dahlia (218) - Ah, cheer up Grumpy! Sure at least you can still come on and grumble to us!

    No matter how bad it is, you know that it will eventually get back to normal and once again you will be living in one of the nicest parts of the country. I have many happy memories of travelling to see the now Mrs RJD when she lived in Cheltenham and then Gloucester - wonderful countryside and you will get it back.

    And you're not really despairing are you? Not Aunt Dahlia! Any more of this and I'll tell you a joke!

  220. At 12:16 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:


  221. At 12:42 PM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Aunt Dahlia - I think that you will find that the correct spelling is AAaaaaaRRRRrrrrrggghhhh!!!!!

    And remember, if the water runs out there is always whisk(e)y.

  222. At 12:53 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    rjd, Just make a comment about putting two folk in a double bed who don't know each other. See gossipmistress at 214. Or mention eddies ravaged courgette! See you on the step

  223. At 01:16 PM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Stewart M - I read that about putting 180 bums into 166 beds. I reckon that means finding 14 pairs who are very friendly.

    As for Ediie's ravaged corgette, I think somebody sent Eddie himself to the naughty step for that one!

  224. At 02:04 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    A note from the DG: "We have taken steps to ensure this sort of thing doesn't happen again."

    Which steps?

    Well, the naughty step was one of them. Sorry, lads. You can't escape there any more.

  225. At 02:22 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    RJD, I think we're all in need of a joke right now. Even I have a dose of the glums today....and I've nothing to be miserable about!
    Oh, pass me that whiskey please - you might want to turn your head away, RJD, while I dilute it with soda!
    Now where did I leave my Tom Holt book?

  226. At 02:29 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I'm online at the post office! Look!

    (waves a sheet of Horry Patter stamps at computer)

    Turns out, there is a teeny weeny Restart button on the wifi thingy ... one prod with a kirby grip and we were back in the land of the living. I have R4 playing on the laptop (walls too thick for radio signals) and I'm now WORKING.

    Well, I will be once I've posted this.

    {{{{{ Dahlia }}}}}

    ..... and ......


    RJD: while you were away, some of us repented of our continually sending you to the naughty step, and resolved not to do it any more so you wouldn't get annoyed with us. Seems we were too hasty! ;o)

    Fifi xx

  227. At 02:43 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Izzy T'Me wrote:

    Hi All

    There is a very obvious need for (((((((frugs))))))) - sorry to hear all the miserable news.

    I went to stay with my sister, just outside Evesham, last Thursday. We were incredibly lucky as we didn't go anywhere on Friday morning (having changed our plans) and then couldn't go anywhere for the rest of the weekend. The lake in the garden failed to reach the house, which was a mighty relief. So very sorry for all those (Aunt D et al) badly affected by it all.

    On a brighter note, having limped home eventually, I went to see Richard Thompson last night - as always, he was fantastic.

    Off to the Cambridge Folk Festival this weekend - don't think it's going to as bad as Glastonbury but plenty of rain forecasted, what fun we're going to have in our tent!! Wish me luck! I guess Wonko is going to need some too.

    Will frog with news of the weekend next week...

    Love Izz xx

    P.S. Jason - my Basil is being ravaged on a nightly basis. Poor Basil, poor courgettes. :o(

  228. At 03:00 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Jason (211) Oh dear but ha ha!

    Belinda (212) Frugs to you too. Glad you're feeling positive but do take it easy!

    Mistress (214) Have a great time! Why not shove 'em all in three in a bed and let them sort it out for themselves?

    Gillian (225) Hugs to you too.

    Fifi (226), If RJD deserves the naughty corner then there he must go (whether it has a step in it or not Jason!) I only cautioned against the use of "RJDStoppit" as an alternative to "oo-eer" or "fnar fnar" or whatever, when he wasn't even there to have started it let alone 'stoppit'!

    I'm "working at home" today. Can you tell???

  229. At 03:03 PM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Re the floods. It might be bad here but there are always people worse off than ourselves. Just noticed this on the newsline:
    Crawford, Texas -- A tragic flood this morning destroyed the personal library of President George W. Bush. The flood began in the presidential bathroom where both books were kept. Both of his books have been lost. A presidential spokesman said the President was devastated, as he had almost finished coloring the second one.

  230. At 03:08 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:


    I am feeling poor today as I have just emptied bank accont for HMCR :-(

    But SO and kids off to inlaws and I have two days in an empty house !! play time!!!!

    I will meet them in Morpeth on Saturday (me via the Chuff chuff) to visit my parents for a day.

    Not sure what I'll do once home from work till then. I should be good and do the household stuff.
    But I think I'll be off out for a beer Friday night. And I'll be late at work Thursday to make sure I have space for my new toy. Fundus camera arrives Friday. I'll take a piccy of it and with it and post somewhere.

  231. At 03:20 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Humph wrote:

    Re Jason (224) I always knew that there was an advantage in calling it the naughty corner. We did not have naughty steps when I was a wee slip of a lad. Far too modern and trendy, if you ask me. And of course, we know that they do not cut corners at the beeb.

    Oh poop!


  232. At 03:23 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    I see Eddie was teasing us a bit with the "50k" comments thread. I think I need a glass of Rioja to compensate. Anyone see the corkscrew about?

  233. At 03:28 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Appy (228): I'm "working at home" today. Can you tell???

    As it is your first post and 3pm...yep, you just got up, have only got your jimmer-jammers on and are attacking that first brew of the day with gusto...

    I hope your colleague hasn't driven you to this.

    I just watched High School Musical with daughter aged 8 going on 18. Two of the songs made me cry. And it wasn't because they were terribly sung. I must be getting soft in my old age.

  234. At 03:30 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Selkius Piscinus wrote:

    I keep trying to cheer myself up by trying to remember the rest of the song that has the refrain "we don't care where the water goes if it doesn't get into the wine", but I can't, and I can't even remember who it's by: does anyone happen to know?

    In Bristol at the moment, the water from the main shouldn't be allowed get into the tea either. I don't know what has happened in *this* area to make it necessary, but they seem to be putting in even more bleach or chlorine or something than usual, and it tastes absolutely vile and smells like a municipal swimming-pool as it comes out of the taps. I never expected to be brushing my teeth using bottled water, but this morning I cracked because I couldn't face putting the draught stuff in my mouth.

    As for having a bath, no self-respecting fish would want to swim in this stuff, but I suppose needs must when the devil drives.

    I do know that this is trivial when compared with the sufferings of others further up the Severn, but in a funny way it's a sort of expression of solidarity to weep with those who weep, if I can't be rejoicing with those who rejoice. Here's to all of us having potable water again as soon as possible!

    *raises glass*
    *sniffs experimentally*
    *establishes that the clear liquid in the glass is vodka, not water, and takes a swig*

  235. At 04:02 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Wonko wrote:

    Hello all, last post before I go!

    I leave a parting gift of Moroccan style lamb, baked in a tarmarind and apricot sauce in a traditional tagine, served with saffron cous-cous.

    Frugs to all in need of them - {{{{[]}}}}

    Izzy - have a great time at Cambridge, hope it stays reasonably clear for you!

    See you in August!

    ;o) []

  236. At 04:05 PM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Humph (231) - I was always more comfortable with the naughty corner rather than naughty step but I'm afraid a step is what we have!

    Jason (224) - Steps they may have taken but I'm afraid that the naughty step remains!

  237. At 04:24 PM on 25 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Mr Fish

    Wine and Water by G.K.Chesterton

    Old Noah he had an ostrich farm and fowls on the largest scale,
    He ate his egg with a ladle in a egg-cup big as a pail,
    And the soup he took was Elephant Soup and fish he took was Whale,
    But they all were small to the cellar he took when he set out to sail,
    And Noah he often said to his wife when he sat down to dine,
    "I don't care where the water goes if it doesn't get into the wine."
    The cataract of the cliff of heaven fell blinding off the brink
    As if it would wash the stars away as suds go down a sink,
    The seven heavens came roaring down for the throats of hell to drink,
    And Noah he cocked his eye and said, "It looks like rain, I think,
    The water has drowned the Matterhorn as deep as a Mendip mine,
    But I don't care where the water goes if it doesn't get into the wine."
    But Noah he sinned, and we have sinned; on tipsy feet we trod,
    Till a great big black teetotaller was sent to us for a rod,
    And you can't get wine at a P.S.A., or chapel, or Eisteddfod,
    For the Curse of Water has come again because of the wrath of God,
    And water is on the Bishop's board and the Higher Thinker's shrine,
    But I don't care where the water goes if it doesn't get into the wine.

  238. At 04:25 PM on 25 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    HI PEEPS !!

    yes i am loud and bouncy today - so, get cracking fifi and appy , youre both working, and RJD?! Was there a book that got shrunk after it went in the washing machine?!?? tee hee!

    Aunt Dahlia, we hear you, stuck there - with the Bishop of LLanduff (?!) - waving to us over the waters, like a silver bird perched on a golden branch! Send us another smoke signal, to let us know you're hanging on...

    Izzy its absolutely years since i went to the cambrigde folk fesitval, but then it was more or less the cambridge beer festival with a side dish of folk....

    Goodluck GM , and look after yourself Belinda, is Gillian still on the wishkey and shoda?

    I think that it is high time the clouds parted, so here on the beach, whilst the sun is out, and the birds are calling, i think i am going to go on a trek round for some fruit and whilst im there i;ll see what fish (or crabs) i can find.

    And if that dosent work, then we'll just have to do some cloud busting later on....


  239. At 04:51 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    My hair had a step in it in the early 80s.

    And it was darker.

  240. At 07:37 PM on 25 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    Wonko (217): after diagnosing the power cut, the urban legend probably then enters mythical territory:
    "OK, I've got it sorted. You need to pack your computer into its box and take it back to the store you bought it from."
    "Oh, is it that bad? What do I tell them?"
    "You're too stupid to use a computer!"

    I have a strange suspicion that there's more than a grain of truth behind tales of cup holders, foot pedals, and missing "any" keys (the myth goes one major IT company changed install messages to "Press space to continue" after being deluged with "Where's the 'Any' key?")


    Anyway, back to beach matters, it's about time we had a beach BBQ. To cater for Veggies I've set up two - one with meaty burgers and sausages, and the other with Linda McCartney / Quorn burgers and sausages.

    Just one problem: the camels are showing far too much interest in the BBQs for my liking...anyone care to take them for a walk?

  241. At 07:55 PM on 25 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:


    I with you on the BBQ, even if I'm gonna have to call you Ben!

    I'll get some wood/gas/charcoal/chippings/fuel...


  242. At 08:12 PM on 25 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    I've just had a brainwave. Anyone got some of those old beach sunshade thingies (4' high wooden poles with fabric draped between them) - we could use those to screen the BBQ area from our gluttonous dromedaries.

    And if you look behind that dune over there, you might find a spare deck chair or two - now be good girls and boys and don't fight over them :)

  243. At 08:22 PM on 25 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    Righteo, if you have difficulty with my nick, feel free to call me "Ben"...

    Courtesy of a CransleyCam [1] request from Gillian, I've found a variety of kebabs in the food hamper, so I'll put those on the BBQ. Oh, since I've got a veggie BBQ as well, might as well publish the obligatory disclaimers:

    Meat BBQ contains meat. Both BBQs conatain soya and nuts. Relishes contain celery, eggs and milk. Buns contain wheat. Wine contains sulphites (apparently). Cola contains caffeine. Diet drinks contain a source of phenylalanine. If you keel over as a result of eating anything, blame yourself :)

    Just remembered: the poles and fabric thingy request is of course for a windbreak. Why ever didn't I think of the term at the time?

    [1] Now playing LS again - at last!

  244. At 08:40 PM on 25 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:


    I s - t h i s - e n o u g h ?!!

    *lays down piles and piles of combustable inflamatories*

  245. At 09:08 PM on 25 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    (Gapes at the pile of fuel)

    OK, I think that's enough to last several beach refreshes - and to feed most of the PM audience (yes, including those offline members).

    Nikki - feel free to grab a burger or two and relax in a deckchair whilst you recover from your efforts...

  246. At 09:15 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Frances O wrote:

    Oh, lord, seems like frugs are needed for lots of people, so here are some


    for Appy, Anne P, Aunty D, Belinda and anyone else I've inadvertently scrolled past.

    Can I just say


    about all the injustices that life flings at us?

    Feeling v down again. The ex's cancer seems to be flaring up again. Why the bloomin heck does Fate keep piling Pelion upon Ossa?

    Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

  247. At 09:17 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Frances O wrote:

    Oh, and Wonko, Izzy and Gossipmrs, have wonderful holidays.

    I have very pleasant memories of one Cambridge Folk Fest I went to, when (thanks to a dear friend) I could get backstage. Oooh!

    Good luck with those bums, Gossy - who knows, you may be the cause of some beautiful relationships.

  248. At 11:09 PM on 25 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    Mift, that was ONE speack-tack-you-lar bbq...!

    am i stuffed or am i stuft??? I grabbed slightly more than a burger or two!!!

    hummock, here I come!! Hang on, who's that:

    Frances O,
    I am sorry to hear the news you write.
    Your eloquence and erudition are testament to the beauty and finess-itude of life's riches - and that of which you speak is truely injustice and unfair. Rage and hurl at the storming sky, and I'm with you, in the darkness and black night, and the utter frustration. Yet grant me this, that even the flickering candle lights....

    Now, I'm going to throw another one of these on the fire!!! OOOOH - Sparks !


  249. At 11:37 PM on 25 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Hi guys,

    Hope everyone is feeling as chipper as I am this evening! I have had a lovely evening dining out with four old school chums. No yearning, no worrying about dodgy people in the office, just jolly good chat. :-)

    Please find a bottle or three of the Pinot Grigio we were drinking on the bar. It was very good!

    Enjoy, x.

  250. At 12:05 AM on 26 Jul 2007, jonnie wrote:

    Ben alerted me to the dying embers down here - I was pre occupied with Facebook

    Frances can I echo nikki's sentiments!

    and lots of positive thoughts to go with them



    To both of you

  251. At 01:23 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Truthyness wrote:

    Aunt D,
    Can Poetry Please? or Coleridge console? :

    And every tongue, through utter drought,
    Was withered at the root ;
    We could not speak, no more than if
    We had been choked with soot."
    Alone, alone, all, all alone,
    Alone on a wide wide sea !
    And never a saint took pity on
    My soul in agony.
    My lips were wet, my throat was cold,
    My garments all were dank ;
    Sure I had drunken in my dreams,
    And still my body drank.
    And the coming wind did roar more loud,
    And the sails did sigh like sedge ;
    And the rain poured down from one black cloud ;
    The Moon was at its edge.

    It is so long that anyone reading the saga to the finish might well find the crisis sorted and the waters receded by the time he raised his head.

    And lurching from the sublime... to the jocular:

    Holy Water Joke:
    You know how to make holy water? You take some regular water and you boil the hell out of it!

    Barman joke:
    A man goes into a bar and asks for a glass of water. The barman pulls out a gun, and points it at the customer. "Thank you" replies the customer and walks out. What happened? asks one of the regulars and putting the weapon away, the publican replies: "The customer had hiccups."

    Chinese Proverb:
    When you drink the water, remember the spring.

    Thinking of all the poor wet, damp, soggy sould weathering this crisis.

    Mi (dry) case, es tu casa.

  252. At 01:31 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Selkius Piscinus wrote:

    RJD, gawblessyerferaGENtleman, that's the one. No wonder I couldn't remember it, thought it was a song, even had a tune that seemed to fit.

    Now I can sleep sound among the seaweed.

  253. At 08:40 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Oh Frances, that's rotten news. Friend of mine is undergoing 4th chemo, and although he's been officially 'given' 6 months to a year this time, he's confounded them so often in the past 3 years that they almost don't bother mentioning prognosis to him any more.

    I hope your ex is as lucky. ((( )))

    Last day in the PO this week, but an earlier start at 8.30. Already I've had my first customer!

    Truly gruesome committee meeting last night: accusations, counter-accusations, outright lies, name-calling, tears and mass resignations (including mine), followed by heads being knocked together and grudging retractions of the worst of it.

    Thankfully I was mainly a bystander during the maelstrom. And in the end, I think this chronically appalling committee may have turned a corner. Festering ill feeling has been given a much-needed airing.

    Now, aren't you townies all jealous that you don't live in a village like mine?

    Fifi ;o)

  254. At 09:04 AM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    I will go and catch up in a minute but have to get this off my chest. Am having a miserable time in July.

    OH's not well. Apparently he's all swollen ('hands the size of footballs') and can't walk. Can't do anything to help and am v worried - he's off to the docs today at some point, so am waiting to hear what the result is.

    Parents divorce, which we all thought was so very nearly sorted (after 3 years of faffing and obstruction on Dad's part) has all gone completely pear shaped. Poor brother is acting as a go-between and am really feeling for him; guess thats one good thing about the fact that Dad and I haven't spoken for months! But its not pretty and unfortunately due to ridiculous behaviour on Dad's part it will effect both mine and my brother's homes. Its very wearing and today....well, I just don't want to be at work (family business so both brother and dad are around).

    Sorry to splurge this all out but am feeling v weak and vulnerable; I'm not a teary sort but I think one wrong word and I may just lose it.

    I'll be curled up in the hammock with a big cushion; could some make me a cuppa with a spoonful of honey please xx

  255. At 09:38 AM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    More frugs to Frances ((( )))

    Fifi - does sound as if things are finally getting there; well done for sticking it out

    Jonnie - Facebook (on other thread) I'll be your friend! Search under Victoria Old....I'm the one with the ears! :) (thats for anyone else too!)

  256. At 09:41 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    Witchiwoman and Frances O

    I've brought a Birthday Breakfast Banquet for everyone.......fresh fruit, full English, croissants, pastries and muffins. It will still be there for elevenses, if no-one can face it just now.

    Yes, it's my birthday....I'm twiddling my thumbs, waiting for daughters to emerge from their beds...I haven't even caught a glimpse of any pressie yet, though husband and sister assure me there are some. I'll give the lassies 10 more minutes.......

  257. At 09:57 AM on 26 Jul 2007, RJD wrote:

    Happyappy Birthdayday Gillianian!!!!!

  258. At 10:00 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Hey, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Gillian.

    Thanks for the lovely elevenses, just the thing.

    Wonder if Eddie has got his computer rebuilt yet.

    (((((frugs))))) to all those in need.

    I'm on Facebook too (Anne Powers in pink with silly pink net 'hat') if anyone else needs a friend. Weird stuff this social networking but quite fun, though hugely time consuming if you don't watch out - bit like the Beach really!

    Must get back to sock knitting.

  259. At 10:03 AM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Gillian -

    Brugs (birthday frugs) for you! And thanks for the brek...just the job. Hope you have a lovely day x

  260. At 10:06 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Selkius Piscinus wrote:

    Fifi, my Ma lived in a village with committees (which she always said she was committed to, for which she ought to be committed) and she used to listen to The Archers every day and get furious with it and shout at the radio. When we asked her why she listened if it annoyed her so, her reply was always "Because it makes me so glad I don't have to live in Ambridge."

    Just imaging being on a committee with all those Archer women! Argh!

  261. At 10:07 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:



    Oh I wish you a wonderful day, and I wonder what conclusion you've come to vis a vis celebrations? I haven't even listened closely enough to the news this week to see how Stratford is faring? If you can't make it to see Henry, just join us on the beach tonight, and I'm sure we can produce a Birthday BBQ!

  262. At 10:18 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Oh Witchi Honey, how about some of this Green Tea? I've dug out the teapot and feel like I'm in the 70's again with leaves and strainers etc. Had been using bags, but I heard a prog the other week about how the bags only have sweepings in, and if you want the proper restorative effects (and the better taste) then it's Leaves or nothing. Thinks, maybe that's the secret of my (until v recently) apparently eternal youth? All those Odd Teas (as Mum used to describe them) I drank in my 20's?

    I'm putting on my Sending Only Good Vibes Hat today, and will be thinking of you, and Frances O and all the rest of you dear people who could do with some better stuff going on in July. Oh yes, and I've resolved to stop moaning about the work - I should be lucky I've got it. (Even if my eyes have developed a droop from lack of fresh air, and exercise and too much peering and squinting - sigh).

    Off to the uncle's funeral now - hope they don't laugh at my hat.................

  263. At 10:28 AM on 26 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY ! Gillian!!

    and best wishes to feefs on the last day (already?) (or is it just last day this week?)

    and ww: (())

    Putting even more stuff on the bar, it looks as if we're going to get quite a crowd for elevenseses...


  264. At 10:38 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Val P wrote:

    Before I go - Fifi, what are you doing working at a Post Office? Did I miss something?

    Jonnie - may I contact you with a couple of questions about your knowledge of Schipol Airport?

    Oh yes, and The Work made me register with Faceb**k too this week - part of a Marketing Campaign (part of the Deadlines), but I think I'm very dull on it as I haven't had time to look....

  265. At 10:39 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    You kept that quiet, Gillianian! Hippo Bathday from me too :-)

  266. At 10:46 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Ah, Witchi ... I feel for you! I don't blame your brother for trying to mediate but it's a tough role at the best of times - and all the harder when it's family and you're not supposed to take sides.

    And poor old OH! Sounds like an allergic reaction...? Or swollen joints maybe...? I hope the GP can sort him out quickly.

    Nice steaming cuppa here for you, made with honey as requested. Careful now, it's piping hot.

    Harry Burpday Gillian! Any sign of those presents yet?

    It's pension day, so lots of interruptions from the post office today.



  267. At 10:52 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    Hi there, Gill! Have a great day.....

    A card is winging its way as I type.


    Big Sis xx

  268. At 11:03 AM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Thanks all so much for frugs and refreshement. Its amazing what effect a few positive thoughts from caring bods can do!

  269. At 11:05 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    Happy birthday Gillianillian
    and hugs to all of you have real problems.
    Today is a much better day. I have to put into practice all my NLP tactics, think positive and it will be so.
    So, all will be well and all will be well, and all manner of things shall be well...


  270. At 11:25 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Frances O wrote:


    And thank you, n-n, jonnie, feefs, witchi, Gillian and Anne.

    (((((((((((((((( )))))))))))))))) to you, witchi. This is the downside of loving people, isn't it?

    Right! Must be time for some birthday celebration drinks.

    Wonder how Eric's doing back in July?

  271. At 11:37 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    I don't even know if I want to venture onto the beach what with all y'all's various troubles. ;-(

    ((((((♡f♡r♡u♡g♡s♡)))))) to all in need and happy burfday Gill!

    Warm thoughts and dry ones to all the flood-afflicted, deflation to the swollen, remission to the afflicted, reconciliation to the estranged, ...


  272. At 11:38 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    Happy Birthday Gillian. The other lads and I will do our usual swimming trunk routine. We have a new syncronised swim routine to show you.

    Are we all giving you the bumps later?

  273. At 11:53 AM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Stewart - is that for Gillians eyes only?

  274. At 11:59 AM on 26 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Happy Birthday, Gillian!

    And chin up, witchi. Are those ears real??

  275. At 12:15 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Stewart M wrote:

    whitchi, I don't charge for looking ;-) Not sure about the rest of them though! But this is malicious

  276. At 12:27 PM on 26 Jul 2007, jonnie wrote:

    Gillian - Happy Birthday :-) I didn't forget but was distracted by n-n and witchiwoman offering to be my friend on Facebook.

    Frances :- I'd say it was the upside of loving someone in a strange sort of 'through thick and thin'. It's all about caring and sharing really - life I mean - and I'm a firm believer in ' the end the love we give is equal to the love we get.

    Was that from Abbey Road?

  277. At 12:29 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Gillianian wrote:


    Thanks for all your good wishes. We're still at home, though Stratford -upon Avon is open for visitors! It's absolutely pelting down with rain here, so we may leave our visit until after lunch. We shall definitely make it to the theatre this evening though! ;o)

    I am honoured to announce that apart from HP7 (HURRAY!) I am now the proud possessor of Andy Cragg's ''Bronze Chairs'' picture. I am soooo happy to have it, and grateful to my husband (who knows the peril of ignoring my hints!) for buying it, and my sister for collecting it. It's up on the wall above my computer in the Hall.

    Stewart M(272) Can't wait! Once us girls have finished this Rosada Cava we'll see what we can do to reciprocate!

  278. At 12:33 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    For Val, and those others who may also be wondering what on earth Fifi's doing in a post office ...

    I'm providing holiday cover in the village PO while my pal is on holiday. Mon-Thurs only, thank heaven, and now that internet is restored I can even work a bit between customers.

    Another week to go (well spotted, n-n!) and then I can hand the keys back and hope my pal can sort out the 2 mysterious discrepancies I've so far created in the accounting. Oops! (Still, loads better than last year's effort....)

    I've rustled up a rather lopsided birthday cake in my pal's kitchen, just cooling on the side. Anyone good at icing? and I can't find any candles either. Once it's finished I'll bring it to the NCMB to add to the burpday goodies.

    Fifi xxx

    PS Val, if you want to email me your Schipol questions, I can pass them on to Jonnie. He can then reply either via me or direct. (He's very quiet at the mo.)

  279. At 01:01 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    Jonnie......And in the end, the love we take, is equal to the love we make, aaahhhAAAAAHHH! dooohh, DOOOOOHHH,DOOOOOHHHHHH

    Val P, you can e-mail Jonnie through the Cransley web-site.

  280. At 01:13 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    This birthday cake is ready for decorating now. I'm thinking Royal Icing would be best, in order to build up the droopy side and fill in the dents.

    I can't bake, did I mention that? Strictly a savoury gal, me.

    Anyone up for a bit of sculpting?


  281. At 01:16 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Anne P. wrote:

    Fifi, I've left a box of multi-coloured cake candles and a large jar of hundreds and thousands on the bar.

    Gillian is there any way we can see Andy's picture? Sounds lovely. Enjoy HP7.

  282. At 01:18 PM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Jason - sadly not, but if I ever had a spare £5k knocking around I'd be tempted....

  283. At 01:20 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Annasee wrote:

    Happy Birthday Gillian! I'll be sending a little something along to your inbox shortly, as soon as I've got the War Office to organise the technical side of things....
    Have a fantastic day.

  284. At 01:25 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Gillian wrote:

    Fifi(280) That cake's marvellous....how clever of you to make it in my exact shape! Don't worry about the dents, they just make it more life-like!

  285. At 01:46 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Open Country on R4 today is from my neck of the woods: Rockingham Forest.

    People and places I know are on the wireless!


  286. At 02:24 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    witchi (282): If I ever had a spare £5k knocking around I'd be amazed!

    Besides I can resist anything. Except temptation. And cheese. And chocolate. Oh, and beer. Or wine. Or whiskey (no more than 3 measures in a sitting). Roast dinners. A quick snooze. Surfing on the internet. Buying books...

  287. At 03:05 PM on 26 Jul 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    hi peeps.....back in circulation, been working in Halstead / Braintree.....will catch up with you all later. In the mean time, coffee and doughnuts o the bar....cafine and sugar boost to see Thursday through...

    Oh and Fifi (285), I caught it at lunchtime too. Good prog.....so thats why you have a black face....all that charcoal?

  288. At 03:05 PM on 26 Jul 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    286 - I can relate to most of that. Except the chocolate and roast dinners! And may have to add raisins and champagne (not together of course but it does remind me of 'races' as a kid; glass of lemonade, couple of raisins and see which one floats up first...it really works!)

  289. At 03:15 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Humph wrote:

    Somewhat belated birthday greetings, Gillian. I have been wondering about your age. You say (256):

    I'm twiddling my thumbs

    which is obviously some sort of code about how old you are but it is not a code that I feel able to break. Normal rules of etiquette prevent a gentleman from enquiring of a lady on that subject so I will just have to go on wondering. I hope that you are enjoying the day.

    H. x

    Icing (n): A karaoke machine manufactured by the Apple corporation.

  290. At 03:26 PM on 26 Jul 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    *************** GILLIAN *****************

    ************ HAPPY BIRTHDAY ************

    ...now you are the same age as me, and that is..........??!!!!


  291. At 03:33 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Jason Good wrote:

    Witchi (288): I am guessing you don't eat/drink them first? Hic.

    Humph (289): Icing - excellent!

    On call tonight. Mrs G not back from work until an hour after my on-call starts.

    17yo step-daughter employed to be here for that hour when the rest of us have to have tea in case I get the call. Mrs G to have plated up leftovers on her return. So step-daughter turns up with boyfriend in tow.

    What's happening, then?
    "Dunno. Mum says she might take us swimming later."
    What's Tom doing about tea, then?
    "Ummm.... Can he have tea here?"
    Yes, but it'd be nice to know.

    So the tea I have planned is 4 portions big. Cannot be padded out.

    So now I have to find something for Mrs G to cook for herself in case I'm not here... I have mentioned that she "doesn't do cooking", haven't I?

  292. At 05:12 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Molly wrote:

    Gillian-just a quick

    just heard a huge crash- my open window in the wind I fear.
    back later.


  293. At 06:27 PM on 26 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    Crikey, looks as though the party's already in full swing! And I only found out about Gillian's birthday courtesy of a flyaway mention by EM...

    Anyway, courtesy of Nikki, there's still plenty of BBQ fuel left, so I'll stoke it up and get the first batch of food on the go.

    Now, what's your preference cake-wise? Sponge, fruit, madeira or something else?

    And I've stocked the bar with a selection of wines - each available in both glass and plastic bottles, so we can perform some "highly scientific research" (hic!) in lieu of Ed and the team (see Glass Box).

  294. At 06:31 PM on 26 Jul 2007, mittfh wrote:

    A quick test to see how many CransleyCam regulars are paying attention: watch out for a suspiciously named guest...

  295. At 09:37 PM on 26 Jul 2007, madmary wrote:

    Happy Birthday Gillian!

    I'd drink a toast but like Jason I'm on call too!

    I'll raise my teacup to you.


  296. At 10:06 PM on 26 Jul 2007, nikki noodle wrote:


    I can report that the 'research' is in full swing...!


  297. At 11:19 PM on 26 Jul 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    Hello everyone,

    Happy birthday Gillianian!

    Hugs Witchi and Frances.

    I have drunk too much so will just lie down over here and try not to say anything silly :-)

  298. At 12:11 AM on 27 Jul 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Unlike Appy, I can't help saying something silly ... I love you all!!!

    * slumps into hammock, disturbing another frogger ... oh well ... too bad" *

    Night all. No p'st'office tomorrow.


    Fifi ;o)

  299. At 01:53 AM on 27 Jul 2007, jonnie wrote:

    Oh it's far too late to wander on to the beach especially as there are 14 mouths to feed in a few hours but I've just had a lovely chat with Gillian on the cam thingy.

    I was sooo chuffed that her (SO) Keith bought her andycraggs 'Chairs' artwork - and she was so thrilled about it, bless her.

    Alas, our conversation degenerated in to a trial version of Flickr! I'll say no more:-(

    Thanks to Mittfh and nikki -noodle I'm also not so lonely - but as I've suggested to Gillian, this Facebook thing is quite fun and very easy to work. I'm surprised that BigSister hasn't ventured yet - though she may have:-(

    On a different tac, I'm interested in listening to this audio diary today at 11 on Radio 4 -- it sounds very moving, the one about the boy with ME.

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