Murder on Tyneside

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Sunday, 31 July 2011

Saturday - A Lovely Evening

Yesterday was very quiet. I forgot about Zara and Mike's wedding, so missed it. I still can't believe that I forgot about it. That is not like me at all. Something is happening to me, which I am not comfortable about.  Some people say these things happen as you grow older. But, as I am sure I have mentioned before, I have a problem there. I don't want to grow older. I never wanted to grow older. Yet, some well meaning person put my name down when I wasn't looking and now I am stuck with the whole concept. If only I could find the list of names, I would scratch mine out! There is absolutely no justice!

Anyway we had a lovely evening, which made up for the missing the wedding thing. We were invited around to a friend's garden for drinks. Very civilised. We all sat in the garden sipping our drinks and chatting until the sun went down. Then we picked up our glasses and went indoors, where we continued with the conversation, the laughter and the drinking. I have to say, we all had a really lovely time. So in the end, all was not lost and I am sure that Zara and Mike will forgive the fact that I missed their wedding. I did see this morning's Daily Mail and I have to say that Zara looked wonderful. I'm sure they had a really lovely day.

I hope your day went well.


Thursday, 28 July 2011

Funny Old Week

This has been a strange week. Everything and nothing has been going on.

On Monday... Sorry, I can't even remember what I did on Monday, so it can't have been anything important. However, I can remember what I did on Tuesday.... I went to the hairdresser's to have my hair trimmed and blow-dried. I quite enjoy having someone fiddling around with my hair - it's rather relaxing. I made the most of that on Tuesday, and didn't do anything else. The reason for this was because, I was saving myself up for my appointment at the eye hospital at the Borders General Hospital on Wednesday.

I had started to see some flashing lights. I won't go into all the details, except to say that I do know you need to see someone if you start to see flashing lights. However, after an examination of my eyeballs, the doctor said that all was fine. So I came away a very happy bunny. The rest of Wednesday was taken up with introducing our friends to Ten Pin Bowling on the Wii. We had a couple of drinks and a few laughs.

Today both my husband I I had appointments at the doctors, before going off to get our bits and pieces in the town. As you will recall, Thursday is bits and pieces day. So as you can see, this week so far, has all been something and nothing. Nothing is planned for Friday, but on Saturday, we are off to a friend's garden for a natter and I am sure a glass of wine or three will be involved.

More on that later,

Hope you are having a great week.


Sunday, 24 July 2011

Elderflower Champagne!!

On Friday afternoon, a friend called to give me a sample of the Elderflower Champagne she had made. I thanked her and put it in the fridge. On Saturday evening, my husband and I decided to try some while watching TV.  I have to say it was really GORGEOUS!! We both really enjoyed it. In fact, it was so good I had a refill.  The consequences? ----------- This morning I slept until 9.15am without flinching and my husband's blood sugar levels rose by 6 points.  It's really good stuff, so we are going to have another crack at it this evening!!

This afternoon was so lovely, we whiled away a few hours sitting on our lovely swing. It is such a shame that we haven't been able to use it much. The weather here has been far from warm. Very wet, actually. Anyway, today we made full use of the swing after we did a little clearing out in the garage. Yesterday I decided - no that's wrong! I declared that we would make a start in sorting out the garage. You have no idea what the inside of our garage looks like. 

I included myself in this venture and believe me, when I say I will help sort the garage, you must realise that things are desperate.  For one thing, I am terrified of spiders, and secondly, -- I am terrified of spiders and from that you will realise that I don't like spiders and that I am aware that spiders of all sizes run wild in there. They appear from nowhere. I sometimes think they lie in wait of me popping in. Then they leap out and start running around all over the place. When this happens, I let out a yell, and the whole street knows that I have seen a spider somewhere!!

Phew!! All this talk of spiders has made me feel queasy. Now is the time to have a drink of my friend's Elderflower Champagne!!

Have a nice, spider free day.


Saturday, 23 July 2011

Tights! What is Going On!

There has been a great deal of talk about M&S underwear of late. Some say it isn't up to their normal standard. I can't say I have noticed that, but what I have had a problem with is their tights.

At one time I could pick out some tights knowing that they were going to fit like a glove. I should add here that I did need to choose the Large size. However a little while ago, I found that the large size were enormous, so I opted for the Medium size. Again these were too big. Therefore on a third visit, I chose the Small size, yet these were also too big. Actually, too big are not the right words - the legs were so long, I could have almost pulled them up over my whole body and tied a knot at the top of my head!!

I still buy M&S tights, but have to opt for the body support tights, as they are firmer and don't stretch beyond where they are meant to. But I still only need to buy a medium size. I suppose that sounds good, really, but what it means to me is that whoever supplies the tights in the first place, must think that British women are giants.

So far today, I have done some washing and changed the bed covers, which means more washing. In turn it also means lots of ironing later this afternoon.

Have a good day!


Friday, 22 July 2011

My Ka

This morning I had to take my car to have the tyre looked at. It looked as though I had a slow puncture. The garage wasn't very busy, so three men came across to check it out. My car was hoisted into the air and jacked up and the wheel was removed. Everyone tramped out into the yard and watched as my wheel was lowered into a large dish of water. There were a few mumbles between the men, before it was decided that the little knob where the air goes in was faulty. (I can't think of the name of it at the moment)

Anyway, we all trundled back into the garage and this little knob was changed. Then again we all went outside to the dish of water. At first it seemed like there was another leak in the rim, but then the water stopped bubbling so we all gathered that the little hole or whatever had sealed itself. Phew!! For a moment I thought I was going to have to buy a new wheel!!

My wheel was re-attached to my car and driven off the lift thing! And the sum total for this was..........£2
Yes! Only £2 I thought it would have been more than that for the little knob thing, never mind the labour of three men.  Well done those three men.

Now it's back to my novel.

I hope all your wheels are intact!!


Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Phone Calls

This morning I had a phone call. It was one of those calls where when you find out that the person on the other end wants to sell you something, you hang up. However, I found that this time the woman on the other end of the line was talking about the PDSA.

As I am an animal lover and do support animal charities when I can, I continued to let her speak and only interrupted to inform her that I had already agreed with an earlier caller to sell raffle tickets on their behalf.  She thanked me for that, but then went on to suggest that I might like to consider including the PDSA in my Will and would I be interested in receiving a booklet telling me how to go about it. I laughed and told her that in no way was I even close to thinking about popping off just yet!

Hopefully, I still have a few good years in me - there is so much I want to do. Besides, we have just bought a new TV and stand and also subscribed to BT Vision and I certainly intend to get my money's worth. Nevertheless I said she could send the booklet.

Anyway, we had a good laugh and I think I made the lady's day. Not a call she will forget quickly.

Have a good day!


Tuesday, 19 July 2011


PS. I have just got to start working on the Wii again. I need to try to get fit!!  Bit of a long shot, but worth giving it a go.


Wedding Celebrations

On Saturday we were invited to an Evening Wedding Reception. It was being held in Gateshead, so we decided to spend a couple of nights in Newcastle at the Millennium Bridge Premier Inn. The evening was a great success and we wish the happy couple lots of love and happiness during their life together. The bride looked beautiful, but for some reason I didn't get the chance to tell her, so I will write to her and her new husband this week.

On Sunday morning, we spent a few hours in the Sage in Gateshead. It was very pleasant, as there were some musicians and singers in the main hall. We found it to be very relaxing sitting with a coffee, listening to them all. The Sage is a magnificent building standing above the River Tyne. It houses two concert halls and we were able to look down on one of them from a view point. I have to say it was very impressive.

We came home yesterday and are now back to normal. I have done some washing, which will have to be ironed shortly, while my husband is reading. Later today. I will also have to finish reading the book I was sent to review. I did get some reading done at the Premier Inn, but didn't get the book finished.

I must also finish editing the short story I have been writing so that I can send it off.  Somewhere in between all this, I will have to give some thought to doing some housework. As I said ---Back to normal!!!

I will have to give up writing this now, as I have come over peculiar after mentioning housework. It does have this effect on me, I don't know why I speak of it at all, when I know how many problems it gives me.

I hope your day isn't filled with problems!


Friday, 15 July 2011

Bits and Pieces Day

Yesterday was bits and pieces day. It is the day we pop into town and pay the papers, look at the magazines, call at the bank and then look in the dress shop. There is more than one dress shop here, but this one is next to WHSmiths, so I can leave my husband in there, while I browse the stock in M&Co.  There is a sale on at the moment, but I wasn't tempted, as we seem to have spent so much money lately, I thought I should give my card a rest.  Not that it wanted to rest. No, when I spotted a rather nice long white skirt in my size, it almost exploded to get out of my bag, but I pushed it back in sharply and closed the zip tight.

We also have coffee and scones at our local garden centre on bits and pieces day. I have to say they certainly know how to make good scones. Mine never ever turned out like that. I used the phrase, never ever, because I don't make scones any more. Why bother, when you can get better ones at the coffee shop?

Tesco delivered our shopping about an hour ago. When you see the van from the window, it is all hands to the pumps. The guy is following a schedule and can't hang around, so we empty the baskets as fast as we can and after bidding him farewell, we set about clearing all the stuff strewed around the kitchen. Not an easy task, but we get by.

Tomorrow evening, we are going to a Wedding Celebration, so that is something to look forward to.

Meanwhile I shall try to get some writing done.

Have a good day,


Tuesday, 12 July 2011

The DVD is installed - whether it likes it or not!!

Good News! Our DVD was installed last night. We waited until it thought it was safe from tampering, before sneaking up on it.  My husband then plugged in all the necessary leads into the back as quickly as possible, while I held onto the front incase it decided to try to slip off the stand and make it's escape! Then we switched on! There was a wobbly moment, when the DVD image came onto the screen and then went off again. It did this twice. One one occasion, the image turned a very pale colour and we held our breath.  At this point, I reckon the DVD box was trying to pull the leads out, but thankfully, they held fast. I reckon even they were getting tired of being handled so much, so decided enough was enough and stayed put.

So now everything is working or at least it was last night. Fingers crossed this evening when we switch on in case the DVD has been working out a plan to mess us around again.

Apart from that, all is well in our world.

Have a good day


Monday, 11 July 2011

My Body is Aching

Oh my goodness! I could hardly get out of bed this morning, I was so stiff! I guess it was all that bending up and down yesterday when we were putting the new television stand together and then getting everything transferred from one stand to the other. It seemed to take up most of the day.

I felt a bit better after a hot shower and decided to do some polishing and dusting to make the room look bright and sparkling after its new make-over.  The old television stand is made from wood and looks just like a coffee table, so after polishing it like mad, it has taken on a new role and is standing in the middle of the room, sporting a vase of flowers.

As for the DVD, (I am whispering now) we are going to wait a few days, before trying to re-install it. We need to let it think it is safe and then pounce when it is sleeping. Some of these gadgets can be so temperamental.

I won't be doing much else today!

Hope your day goes smoothly.


Sunday, 10 July 2011

End of the Saga

Okay everyone, the moment of truth came today at 11am when two men arrived to deliver our TV stand.  I asked them whether they knew they were to take the old TV away and they said no they didn't. No one had mentioned it. It wasn't on the paperwork.  He we go again, I thought.  However, after peering at it from all angles, the two men lifted our old TV, lumbered out the door and placed it in their van. So we bade a farewell to the Television set and set about putting up the new stand.

There weren't any problems to speak of.  All the bits were there and fitted together without too much fuss. The main problem came when we had to dismantle the DVD, Video and BT Vision box and set them all up again on the new stand.  Why are there so many wires and plugs for each piece of equipment?  You wouldn't believe the tangled mess we have behind our TV set.  Anyway, after fiddling around for what seemed like an eternity, things are working, well almost. The DVD is unhappy with the new arrangement and has put its foot down about being installed. So we are leaving it for the moment until it gets used to the idea of being on a lower shelf.  Then we will sneak the leads in while it isn't looking and switch on.  I hope that does the trick.

There is no need to use the Wii today. I have had enough exercise acting as the labourer to last me for a few days. My poor knees and hips are almost dropping off with lifting things up and putting them down. I am absolutely knackered.  Goodness knows what we will eat tonight, as this cute little chick is finished for the day. 

I am going to settle down with a glass of wine and watch Midsomer Murders - yes I have seen it before and can probably mouth the script with the characters, but does this face look bothered? I don't think so.

Hope you are having a great day!


Saturday, 9 July 2011

The New Television Saga Continues

We have still got our old bulky television sitting on the floor by the dining table.

My husband telephoned yesterday and spoke to some one in India, (at least it sounded as though she was speaking from India).  He explained all over again that we were waiting for someone to collect the old TV.  However, he was told that they didn't do this.  Trying to stay calm, he told her that only the day before, someone had delclared that it would be collected.  He also mentioned that website, where the TV was ordered, stated that they did their bit for the environment, by collecting the old equipment. It is stated in three places on the site: one of them being in the terms and conditions.  I gather there was a lot of huffing and puffing, before the woman went off to talk to her colleague.  When she returned the reply was the same, the website was wrong.  How my husband kept his cool, I don't know. 

Not wanting this to rest, my husband then got back onto the website and after clicking on various links, he found another phone number.  Taking a deep breath, he dialed the number.  This time he believes he was speaking to someone in the UK.  The person looked at our order and told us our old TV was due to be collected on 10th July when they delivered the stand.

So now we are waiting to see what happens tomorrow, when the stand is delivered. Believe me, we will be home. Our feet won't cross the threshold tomorrow for fear of missing the delivery and, hopefully, the collection.  In a way, I think I will be sad to see it go.  I have become a little attached to it sitting there on the floor by the table.  But it certainly can't stay there.  We need the space. I am also considerating getting rid of our hostess trolley - I'm not sure they make them anymore - I have had it for around twenty years, but I haven't used it for some time.

Stay tuned for an update on the old TV.

Have a peaceful day


Friday, 8 July 2011

New Television

Yesterday our new television arrived. Our neighbour very kindly took it in. We were under the impression that we would receive a text an hour or so before it arrived. But this didn't happen, so that's why we were out when it was delivered. The plan was that the delivery van would take away the old one, so that also didn't happen. Now we have two TVs in our room, our shiny new one and a very large bulky old one.

Why is it that things never go to plan? When we ordered the new one, we were assured that the old one would be taken away. However, it seems that the firm used a National Carrier to deliver our order, so I doubt they would have taken it away even if we had been in. Nor would they have unwrapped it and taken away the packaging, as we were told would happen. Or would they? Apologies if I am wrong here, but as far as I am aware, they run a courier/delivery service.

My husband rang the firm once we carried our TV across the road and they said someone would call to pick up the old TV and would ring in the next four hours to give a time. That was yesterday and no one has been in contact. Therefore our heavy TV is still standing next to the dining room table.

I wonder whether we will hear anything from the company today. Meanwhile, we are still waiting for our new TV stand, which we ordered from the same company at the same time as the TV. Wouldn't it have been a good idea to deliver both at the same time? It seems not.

Anyway, to get over the whole experience, I had a glass of wine. I doubt there is a better antidote for solving problems.

The new TV is great. It seems to be working okay and we are pleased with it. It is certainly easier to move around should you need to get to the back where the plugs etc are.

Incidentally, I met my friends in Berwick yesterday for a natter over coffee and scones. It was very enjoyable, as I hadn't seen them for some time.

Have a good day,


Wednesday, 6 July 2011

BT Vision Day 2

Our BT Vision box seems to be working. Last night we fiddled around with the remote to see what we could be able to watch, should there be nothing on the terrestrial channels - which often there isn't.  Anyway, it seems we can download films, drama, comedy etc, via our broadband hub (marvellous, isn't it) so there should always be something we can watch. Well that's the theory!

This evening we are going to a friend's house for drinks. So we are looking forward to that. As for the rest of the day, I think we will be taking things easy - gearing ourselves up, so to speak. While tomorrow, I have a choice to make. Do I go to the darts and show myself up again or do I meet my friends in Berwick for coffee? The second one seems the less stressful of the two.  Decisions, decisions, thankfully the whole world isn't waiting for me to make the right one!

Take care all,


Tuesday, 5 July 2011

BT Vision

The BT Engineer called this morning. He was due after 1pm, but phoned quite earlier to ask if he could come within the next half an hour. Gosh, was there a scatter in our house after that. I wasn't dressed, my husband was still in bed and the room I use for an office was still in turmoil. (The hub for our PCs is in my office, so he needed to check it out.)  But it is my office and that's how I like it.  It seems that all the extra things we can get with this new BT Vision box come through our broadband.  So the engineer had to check it out. 

Isn't science wonderful? I have no idea how this new fangle thing works.  Actually, I have no idea how I can switch on my PC and 'talk' to people all over the world - let alone how the hub in my office can transport films, etc to our TV which is along the passage and on the far side of the sitting room, without an ariel. Perhaps it's best I don't know,as I might want to start fixing things.  The engineer was very nice and explained everything to us, at least my husband knew what he was talking about, while I tried to sound intelligent and asked a few questions.  However, I think the gist of it is, we are supposed to be able to get Demand TV, as well other things which have been on TV previously and we might have missed for some reason or another. We should also be able to watch films, though some we will have to pay for - a bit like Sky.  I'm sure there are a lot more things we can get, but I need to read up on it.

It all sounds really good, but tonight will be the big test.  Will we be able to find the things we want to see??

I hope your day goes well.


Sunday, 3 July 2011

Sunny Days

We went to The Barn at Beal for lunch today. The views from the restaurant across towards Holy Island are stunning and, as the sun was shining, it beautiful. There were quite a few people there. They must have all had the same idea as us.

Yesterday was lovely and sunny, too. They were holding a cream tea event in our local social club, but we didn't go to that. Being diabetic, there wouldn't have been much there he could eat. Okay, I could have gone and eaten for the two of us, but I decided to give it a miss. Instead, I did a few exercises on the Wii and it thanked me by telling me I had the fitness age of thirty. How about that!!  Those who know my real age will know how pleased I was, while those that don't know me will just have to keep guessing!

I have been sent a book to review and I haven't even started it yet, so I must get down to that today.  I have been putting the finishing touches to a short story, so I might get that posted off to a magazine tomorrow.  I even changed the title of the story during the editing. I wonder whether that will help.

On Tuesday, someone is coming from BT to check out what we get on Freeview. It seems we can have a new box and pick up even more channels. That is the plan anyway. Whether it comes off or not, is anyone's guess. Anyway, what I am getting around to saying, is that I will have to have a tidy up before the engineer comes - especially if he has to come into the room I have as an office. That is where the broadband router is or whatever it is they call it. I am not clued up on all these gadgets. I simply turn them on and hope that everything will spring into action. If it doesn't, then I call my husband to check it out. Anyway, getting back to the engineer, I hope he is wearing blinkers, as my office space is always in a mess. But that is how I like it and I have a magnet on my notice board saying so.

Well I had better get a start on that book - I hope they don't want the review in a hurry.

Have a sunny day wherever you are!