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Yesterday evening we drank a very nice Bacchus dry Brightwell Vineyard white wine from nearby Oxfordshire, was delicious, and had a wonderful bouquet.

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Well, I’ve served my ban from the forum - who knew that Alamy had its own correction facility? - and paid my debt to society. During my time in the slammer I got a facial tattoo, learned how to play the harmonica and ‘enjoyed’ a brief and not entirely consensual relationship with my cellmate, Knuckles.

 

Has anything happened since I’ve been away? Last time I saw the news, some TV guy called Trump was trying to become president. A joke, right??

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Hmm. I thought I saw you in here yesterday, John? How has Knuckles been keeping himself? 

 

A proper harmonica or a blues harp? Toots passed a few years ago, but he remains the sultan of the harmonica. 

 

 

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6 hours ago, sb photos said:

Yesterday evening we drank a very nice Bacchus dry Brightwell Vineyard white wine from nearby Oxfordshire, was delicious, and had a wonderful bouquet.

 

We had a tour and wine tasting at  Brightwell Vineyard a year or so back, present from our daughter. They produce some very nice whites.

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8 hours ago, John Morrison said:

Well, I’ve served my ban from the forum - who knew that Alamy had its own correction facility? - and paid my debt to society. During my time in the slammer I got a facial tattoo, learned how to play the harmonica and ‘enjoyed’ a brief and not entirely consensual relationship with my cellmate, Knuckles.

 

Has anything happened since I’ve been away? Last time I saw the news, some TV guy called Trump was trying to become president. A joke, right??

 

No joke. It happened. So did you get a pardon or serve your full sentence?

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I had a singing bus driver. The bus that passes in front of my building and that I use a lot in my cat-sitting often doesn't have many passengers and can be really empty these days of people working from home and going off to live in their country places. Today I was the only passenger and had a twenty minute ride with a driver who was enjoying a few songs. He sang "Stars Fell on Alabama", "Faraway Places with Strange Sounding Names", "Dream a Little Dream of Me" and a few others. It was quite delightful and a change from the gloomy mood of a lot of us these days.

 

Paulette

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1 hour ago, NYCat said:

I had a singing bus driver. The bus that passes in front of my building and that I use a lot in my cat-sitting often doesn't have many passengers and can be really empty these days of people working from home and going off to live in their country places. Today I was the only passenger and had a twenty minute ride with a driver who was enjoying a few songs. He sang "Stars Fell on Alabama", "Faraway Places with Strange Sounding Names", "Dream a Little Dream of Me" and a few others. It was quite delightful and a change from the gloomy mood of a lot of us these days.

 

Paulette

 

Nice story. Reminds me of the time we took my father for a trip to Dublin not long after my mother had passed away.  Not surprisingly he wasn't in the best of spirits, but we took a ride on a tour bus whose driver's wit and repartee kept us  all amused and entertained throughout the journey. Turned out to be the high spot of the weekend.  We also visited the Guinness brewery, and I do like Guinness, but I recall thinking, that despite rumours to the contrary, the drink they served there tasted exactly the same as that served in our local.

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27 minutes ago, Bryan said:

 

Nice story. Reminds me of the time we took my father for a trip to Dublin not long after my mother had passed away.  Not surprisingly he wasn't in the best of spirits, but we took a ride on a tour bus whose driver's wit and repartee kept us  all amused and entertained throughout the journey. Turned out to be the high spot of the weekend.  We also visited the Guinness brewery, and I do like Guinness, but I recall thinking, that despite rumours to the contrary, the drink they served there tasted exactly the same as that served in our local.

We went to Dublin a few years ago to see Art Garfunkel in concert. Spent the evening before in a bar listening to a fabulous Irish band, and drinking rather a lot.  The next day we got the Dart train to the coast and cured our hangover with fish and chips and sea air before the concert. It was good to hear Art live as  Simon and Garfunkel’s ‘ Bridge over troubled water ’ album was a reminder of our courting days but with hindsight the night at the pub was more fun!! 

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I think I've cleaned up my iMac's Magic Keyboard II's right hand shift key enough that I don't have to buy a new one next time I'm in Managua.  Shall see, but looks OK so far.  Used canned air, Residual Oil Remover, paper towels, and Zeiss Lens Cleaning Wipes.  Saves me $100.  Keyboard looks clean again, too.  My desk has a glass top over the keyboard shelf so I can keep the cats and some spills off it and still see the keyboard but over times, it does get cruddy.

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28 minutes ago, Bryan said:

driver's wit and repartee kept us  all amused and entertained throughout the journey. 

 

Talking about wit, once at Xmas time in London, we were in a very crowded lift at a Tube station. The lift has 2 doors at either end, one for entry, one for exit. Of course there were cheaters who entered through the exit to be first. The booming voice of the lift attendant was heard "Happy Xmas everyone, except those who entered from the back, I hope your turkey burn".

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9 hours ago, Bryan said:

We also visited the Guinness brewery, and I do like Guinness, but I recall thinking, that despite rumours to the contrary, the drink they served there tasted exactly the same as that served in our local.

 

In the early 70's after touring Scotland, then ferry to NI and a quick trip to Belfast, I drove down to Dublin for a few days. I too thought Guinness tasted the same as in the UK, and also wrongly thought it would be cheaper. They were interesting times, and annoyingly I've never found the few rolls of B&W film I processed when back home. I've searched again recently without success for frames from a Sinn Féin rally outside the GPO building, thinking of archival uploading, but not found. Only shot on an Olympus Trip, but was adequate at the time.

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This morning I had what I was told is my last broken-arm visit to the Aintree University Hospital fracture unit. The doctor and a therapist gave to some tests and explain what I already knew: it will be a while before I am perfect . . . and I will probably never be perfect again. So be it. Who the hell is perfect? 

 

On the way out to the taxi, I found a letter from the NHS in my mailbox instructing me how to make an appointment for a vaccination. 

 

So, 'twas a good news morning, health wise. 

 

Stay well, everyone!

 

 

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2 minutes ago, Ed Rooney said:

I found a letter from the NHS in my mailbox instructing me how to make an appointment for a vaccination.

Good news indeed!

 

I got a text from my local medical centre - basic message: "Don't call us, we'll call you" - which reassures me that I'll get a call when my turn comes...

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Local, John? Good on you.

 

I have booked both my jabs online, the first one next week, the second in April. Both will be at a resort hotel pharmacy, a 24 mile taxi ride from me, about the same distance as the hospital I went to this morning. No, I don't plan to take any trains or buses. Those taxi fares are the only money I've spend on my healthcare since I arrived in Liverpool and joined the NHS.

 

I can't say enough good things about the NHS.  

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Great to learn that you have your jabs scheduled Edo, but I'm wondering why you have to travel so far to get them. Locally people are being vaccinated at the town's primary care centre which is next to the library and shops. 24 miles is taking you to the outskirts of Manchester! Or maybe I've misunderstood your post and that's the round trip - but still a fair hike.

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2 hours ago, Bryan said:

Great to learn that you have your jabs scheduled Edo, but I'm wondering why you have to travel so far to get them. Locally people are being vaccinated at the town's primary care centre which is next to the library and shops. 24 miles is taking you to the outskirts of Manchester! Or maybe I've misunderstood your post and that's the round trip - but still a fair hike.

Absent knowledge of our GP system I expect Ed has taken what he was first offered. I understand it is possible to have a choice but it may involve a wait.

Or perhaps he just fancies a trip out to a nice hotel- I probably would! Not that you can do anything hotelly there like have afternoon tea. But you might be able to do in April.

Sorry Ed, you can speak for yourself perfectly well, but I have heard about this in the press- there is a choice but you have to know how to exercise it.

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25 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

Absent knowledge of our GP system I expect Ed has taken what he was first offered. I understand it is possible to have a choice but it may involve a wait.

Or perhaps he just fancies a trip out to a nice hotel- I probably would! Not that you can do anything hotelly there like have afternoon tea. But you might be able to do in April.

Sorry Ed, you can speak for yourself perfectly well, but I have heard about this in the press- there is a choice but you have to know how to exercise it.

 

Bryan, Mark has it exactly right. Thanks, Mark.

 

My option is to take the closest choice offered me now. I don't expect the restaurant to be open for lunch. My regular surgery is a 12 minute walk from my building. It's been shut down since last spring. For me, this is just a bump in the road that will cost me about 40 pounds. The NHS has bigger problems. 

 

My friends in the States have been unable to find a vaccine anywhere.

 

Edited by Ed Rooney
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It's pretty chaotic at this point in NYC. West Virginia is the place to be it seems. I have my appointments in FEB and MAR but very little confidence that they won't be cancelled for lack of vaccine.

 

Paulette

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15 hours ago, spacecadet said:

OH was in One Of Those Moods so a nice half-bottle of Rhône with the sausage and chips. After we'd finished the Merlot.

Is the wine you like dry? I’m not a wine connoisseur. I do know I like Zenfedel and sweetish wines. Like when you bite into an apple, sweet.  
My boss treated the whole office and spouses to a fine steak dinner at a supper house once at Christmas. There was a glass of red wine by my plate to go with the steak. I took a sip and nearly spewed it out. So dry I puckered. Not what I like. It wasn’t even cold. 🤢🤮

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I've just had an article about me on Chinadaily website. A photo I took that got 2nd prize in a local competition for expats in China has been highlighted as promoting the city (Jiaxing) I live in. Rather happy to get this kind of exposure, now I need to quickly upload the image and others for people to see.

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The contractors completed their work felling a line of trees around our allotment site. I was really impressed by the skill and professionalism of these people. They removed all of the wood alongside a cycle track/path on one side of the site, to prevent it being placed on the track as a hazard, while they left it elsewhere. Despite the fact that many of the trees were overhanging the gardens, and space very tight due to yet more trees, no real damage was done to our fences and structures. The place has been transformed, my garden is going to see at least another hour of light each day, while parts of some plots will receive direct sunlight for the first time in years. 

 

I love trees, but, when planting, you need to think carefully about the long term consequences. 

 

Finally, and nowt to do with trees, after two miserable days of heavy rain, the sun is predicted to shine today !

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I went to the supermarket today and as we are in lockdown (except for essentials) and have further restrictions coming into force this evening, I expected it to be busy. I really did not want to go over the weekend when it will be busier. Was very pleasantly surprised that it was virtually empty. Lots of the bits I wanted were on offer and when I went through the till I was given a swish cool bag with products inside as I had spent more than 75 euros. (I spent 77). When I got home and emptied the bag it was all sensible items you would normally buy, like kitchen roll, fabric softener, pasta etc. (the leaflet gave the prices of the items in the store and it was 15 euros worth plus the bag) When checking my receipt I saw that I had also saved 57.75 on my shopping as not only had I purchased many items on offer, but the store is also running a refund on VAT for some purchases for this month so 16.79 of the 57.75 was vat refund. Yay.  150 euros worth of goods for 77, happy bunny. :) 

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