Friday, 29 October 2010

Sound advice

Here we are being instructed in the art of sound engineering. This is one of the studios at WEC's Springhead Park House near Leeds where we have spent the week on a media course. I am deleting the duff-stuff to make a clean programme watched by Ruth Mark. She told us to make mistakes on purpose to give us editing experience. I missed one deliberate mistake on an item involving someone called Luke. I added a new surname for him and we hadn't time to clean it out. Sorry for anyone who gets a CD asking them to pray for Luke Skywalker...

Monday, 18 October 2010

Diamond Dodos

That is it, we are officially getting old! We were away all day today and stopped for some lunch. The diamond club for over 50s was free to join and you get a full meal for £7.25 - we were starving and it seemed a good idea but then we began to notice the barmaid could be our daughter.The galling thing was they took our word for it that I was over 50 actually they may ask for my diamond card back if they realise I am only just 50! Oh well the food was delicious and although we ate our main meal at luchtime like old people now it is 8.30pm Les can happily go to bed....zzzzzzzz

A tale of two Janes

This weekend we went to visit Jane Macrae a friend from Orkney who is removating a beautiful bungalow down here in Hampshire.  I was telling her that I had inadvertantly walked over Jane Austen's grave as we walked out of Evensong in Winchester Cathedral. It turned out Jane Austen's house was in the next village. We went in today for a visit and were well pleased with our time there in the village of Cawton where she spent her most productive years, and wrote or revised all her successful novels. I never realised how many of the stories were inspired by her own experiences but I know now. Her kitchen was clean too!

Friday, 15 October 2010

Trafalgar Yacht Services

So here we were at the seaside for our half day. Ice cream paddling chips you know the routine.However as we crossed the river we saw a familiar sign "Trafalgar Yacht Services". We had contacted them by email last year trying to retrieve the original bill of sail for the boat we have Blithe Spirit. You must have these papers before you go abroad or else pay the VAT again at todays rates. The lady who works in the Trafalgar Office was a girl when Westerly Yachts went bust and thankfully she retreived various drawers of important documents from decades ago - including our papers from 1981. We were so surprised to see this was where they hang out - Les walked in and asked for Caroline, who was the only person there..... It was good to be able to thank her for saving us hundreds of pounds should we ever take the boat to Spain.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Went to the beach as soon as we arrived in Fareham, we were just in time to see the sun go down and the new luxury liner sail past after being named and launched by her name sake Queen Eliazabeth. We all expected her to be the QE3 but there you go there is no third queen Elizabeth yet!

THe night was warm and everybody was really friendly - hearing our accents they all wanted to point out that the tub sailing out in front of her was the Waverly - fresh from her career of taking passengers to Bute.
After sitting on the front for a wee while  we saw the vessel ditch her tugs and sail between us and the Isle of Wight - before long all her steaming lights came on and she was lit up like a Christmas tree - very pretty but too dark to take pictures. We understand she sailed for the Canaries - too late they failed to take two would be Spanish Missionaries on board...

Friday, 1 October 2010

Cowans' Culinary Companion

Simple living needn't take lots of gadgets. One tool can do many things. In my recent travels I have learned to make good toast with hair straighteners (browns both sides simultaneously) I have neatly chopped a large onion with my nail scissors for soup and I have always been able to fry an egg in an empty shoe polish tin by holding it over a burning almond. (Blame the girl guides for that one.) It needs to be a tin of Kiwi polish and you need to eat it out the tin as it sticks. I have also managed to make a clootie duff in a pair of clean boxer shorts. If you don't want to be found out remember to put the mark made by the seam underneath. when you serve it. I have rolled pastry with the cling film roll and I have shrink wrapped the mast of the boat with what was left of the cling film, although that wasn't strictly culinary more chandlery! Despite all this I wish I had the contents of my loft.