AND SO WITH A SMILEY….

I felt guilty about posting my bits of relative trivia when there are so many seriously, serious life events unfolding all around me. I don’t mean navel-gazing, though if you think about it, with the various muddles and crises going on in our own back yard here in the UK, it would be very easy to navel-gaze and shut out the rest of the world.  The ‘life must go on’ adage keeps popping into my head, paradoxically, adding to my hesitation to write. I do not really have any idea what writer’s block is. I assume that it would be different for every writer and maybe, this is mine.  Ho hum.

 

Am I okay to say I wrapped up the first Christmas parcel for 2019 a couple weeks ago; or, a visit to my dentist left me with neck-ache! I’m seeing him again tomorrow.  Also, I have been following Deacon Gilly’s Lenten determination to place negativity on the shelf in ‘my daily doings’. That’s proving to be a hard one, much more than I expected it to be. The corollary is working through it and to see and hear things that lift my spirits through the more positive spirits of others. What about, “I whistle a happy tune so no-one will suspect…’, except, people would run a mile hearing me try to whistle.  Better still, where I live, people make eye contact and smile at one another in greeting; you don’t have to know them. (There are the exceptions). However, just wandering around and sharing smiles I find can be uplifting.

So, with a smiley….TTFN    🙂

 

Advertisements

MAYBE THE RELATIVES IN AUSTRALIA CAN DO IT…

Understand, that I am truly grateful for the health service’ existence. I have never begrudged the National Health Contribution,( additional taxation) I believed I paid towards the service during my years of working life. It turns out though, it was a massive ponsy scheme that was allowed by successive governments and over decades. The National Insurance my generation paid was used for previous spends and not as future National Insurance.  Payment was deducted direct from earnings, before we received our wages, which payment, we were told, was for our generation.

I have been disturbed for a some years by the standards that vital services, including the health and safety of the nation, are being manipulated to descend to.  How do you succinctly describe what I have just been told, first hand. Sadly, similar stories are happening throughout the UK, this country that has some great professionals fighting a rear guard action working in an impossibly contracting National Health Service.

A lively 86 year old widow, living alone, was shipped by ambulance as an emergency to the main hospital, 120 miles along difficult roads. It’s a journey of about three hours minimum, if there are no travel problems en route. The widow had been unable to move and was in extreme pain. Paramedics called the doctor after one and a half hours of working with the lady at her home. Her domestic circumstances were passed on to hospital staff by the paramedical escort and the referring doctor.

A week later the widow was asking Occupational Therapy staff, (OTS) about going home. They had been waiting on news about the installation of support equipment outside and inside her home, they said, including an extra handrail up a steep staircase   The job had been completed two days before. No communication there then.

Next day she was told by OTS: You’re going at 11am…. Going where? She asked. ……Going home. …..How? All I’ve got is my nightie,slippers and dressing gown that I came in.  Can anyone bring clothes in for you? ……Ring Australia and see if the relatives, (her next of kin) there can help, she replied. It raised a laugh. Can you sit on a chair asked OTS? …I think so. …Right, that’s what we’ll do, we’ll get you a chair and, we’ll make sure there is someone to settle you in at home.  Luckily, another patient was being taken home by ambulance, so, the two shared the transport part of the way and the poor driver had  an unexpected very long return journey.

There was no-one to settle the widow into a very cold house. (No-one had been contacted ). Her hospital bag of requirements was dropped off in the middle of her sitting room and she was left to her own devices.

 

BEYOND BELIEF

Just post war: my mother told me that she had lost the address of a special friend. One afternoon she set off for a walk; my mother walked a lot.  She described her walk through a different area to where she lived. Then, my mother stopped walking, not knowing where she was and outside a house she did not know. However, compelled to move, my mother told me she knocked on the door and her friend answered.

 

We were waiting for the celebrant to arrive for a funeral in which, I was the main participant. It was a snowy January. Hubby and me were sitting on a bench in the hall contemplating the silence. The casque was in front of us.  I did feel chilled and I tried not to shiver.   Just then heard the the voice of the deceased’s sister saying to me in her own inimitable way, “Oh my, M, you look lovely”.

……….The lady had died nearly thirty years before.

HOT AIR!

What a curious thing!

WASHINGTON — Ramping up wind power in America would also increase the nation’s temperatures, a new study from Harvard found. 

 Contrary to what you may be thinking, this is not about excess hot air escaping from the seat of power, The White House.

The dramatic all-out expansion of the number of wind turbines in the U.S. could warm the coal and also the other fossil fuels which are in the burning mix, because of the manner in which the spinning blades disturb the layers of cold and warm air. Normally, the air is more still at night, with cold air staying near the surface and warmer air resting a little higher. But turbines bring the warm air down and cool air up, making the ground a bit warmer. Interestingly, the effect is reduced during the day but is still there. 

p1000453-top-of-cnoc-wb

The study looked at just the United States.  It found that in the unlikely event that the U.S. switched massively to wind to supply its electricity, there would be so many turbines that on average the nation’s temperature would go up about 0.4 degrees, though there would also be some cooling in places, such as the East Coast. Additionally, the turbines would cause more warming in the short term, this century, than the carbon dioxide America spews into the atmosphere would. 

P1030280 2010 Aug 5th Limousin Supreme Champ

The effect from turbines is different from human-caused climate change. According to the study authors, the effect which mostly consists of warming, is localised and it’s temporary. When the turbine blades are still  the air is calm and there’s no warming.

Wind advocates emphasized that the Harvard study doesn’t show turbines causing global warming, just local hot air.

 

Study lead Author Keith Miller and Co-Author Professor David Keith. Based on an article by Seth Borenstein Associated Press. October 10th-2018

GLASGOW’S UNDERGROUND WORLD

When in Glasgow:
Visit the underground world of Glasgow Central Station. The unique guide and major enthusiast, in his retirement, is otherwise employed as Network Rail’s Historian and Archivist.  He used to manage this station. During his career he also managed several other major stations in London, U.K, however, he always returned to his home (and station) Glasgow Central.

Lovely Victorian Supporting Pillars

Descending into Glasgow’s historic and present transport underworld made for a tremendously engaging and educational visit, the guide, bringing to life with his words this major, solid, surviving transport hub. He spoke of the hustle and bustle of transport, for and with all sorts of people, now and in previous times. Peering into the pitch black, eyes following the slim line of a torch beam, it felt like we were intruders into someone else’s world. We saw the outline of places on platforms that were still intact where men could not go, and neither could we. Women of the 19th century waiting for trains in that gloom had the ‘comfort’ of separated waiting areas.  Our way was barred for reasons of safety, which pertained to present day use.

A Disused Line

In a lower street level goods entry, (Glasgow is a city of hills) there were still signs of horse drawn transport. The resting places for the horses still exist.

Like many stations, the ‘streets’ under Glasgow Central station were put to stark use in the two major wars, (WW1 and WWII).  The guide did not mince his words about many elements of the nineteenth century social history associated with this station. He felt very strongly the roles of womenfolk in life and death in this station, was and had been, totally ignored… he was definitely intent on correcting with his words what he felt was a grave neglect and a major injustice.

Preserver Of  Industrial/Social Heritage

While we were in the depths exploring some unused tunnelling and were in our joint reveries sensing the spirits of the past, on a nearby spur an underground train whizzed through.

WHY? YOU MIGHT WELL ASK.

The sat nave is plugged into my computer not only taking charge, but also making a meal of updating itself.  One hour and twelve minutes according to the magic timer, long enough to gulp a re-energising first and second course electrical feed.

-1

So, here I am pondering.  A bit of plugging in to an energising surge would do me the world of good too. 

P1030465 light sticks

This morning I ‘mislaid’ a towel which was placed near the washing machine to remind me to add it to the wash load. When the time came, I just couldn’t find it.  The wash load was done minus the towel.  I discovered it some time later.  It was wrapped round a freezer pack which had been easing a sore point on my back!! 

IMG_0837

My excuse…..yes I do have one; this was the morning after the night before: this morning in particular, was too early to be awake thinking about anything. I was even too tired to expend energy being grumpy.  Why?  You might well ask.  Twice during the  night I was was abruptly disturbed out of my slumbers.

 

* “Golden slumbers kiss your eyes, smiles awake you when  you rise….”  Oh, were it true.*(Brahms Lullaby)

Just Checked the satnav update progress. It looks like it’s charging up for an all night session.  The progress bar has regressively jumped from forty minutes to fifty minutes…..zzzzzz.

 

RETURNING FATTY FAVOURS

Rook

Hubs has been feeding up the local bird life – mostly, Rooks just now – with lots of luscious fat balls. He leaves the fat balls hanging in net bags on the bird feeder. The Rooks spend a bit of time untying and unhooking  the net bags containing the fatty feast.  Once the fat ball bags have fallen to the ground, the Rooks nip at them. The fat balls are pushed and rolled around on the grass using their beaks and the odd clawed foot or two. It’s like watching a bird version of  croquet.  For them, it’s not enough to just peck at the goodies through the wide gauge netting, these birds want the food unencumbered.  Any missed morsels to be found at the base of the bird feeder, or, in the grass, are picked up by a few smaller birds that sneak in. They know the Rooks will not bother them as the Rooks have the bigger prize.  The smaller birds also know that  being amongst the Rooks will provide protection for them from any marauding predatory birds.

-2

Fat Balls

We’ve had the first few days of bright breezy drying weather for many weeks. As cold as it is, (balmy highs of 4-5 deg C with wind chill) you take advantage of it to get the laundry out on the washing line to dry.   As a thank you for hubs tender loving care and forethought in providing delicious fat balls, the Rooks have  copiously shat all over my washing.  About 90% of it.  Of course, they waited for the day I pegged out big stuff like bed covers and sheets!

P1020105 Sands Hotel Burray Laundry blowing

 

 

 

THUMBS UP! IT REALLY WORKS.

Well I never! It’s not every day when I go shopping, my purchases on the check out belt generate laundry tips  from the check-out operator.  He had tried it himself, he said, and it worked.  A quick bit of advice on the amount to use as he handed me my change, and “only with clear vinegar mind, definitely not malt vinegar, ( perish the thought) and no detergent”;   “If you do it like I said, your cotton towels will come out of the wash nice and soft”.  It’s amazing what you learn at the checkouts, I said, as I was leaving.  Giving me a thumbs up sign, he assured me again it really worked.

 

 

DON’T YOU KNOW…

On Boxing Day, (26th December 2017) a National Bank Holiday, I was sitting at the centre table of  a row of three tables for two, in a busy village coffee shop, we consumers were all in close proximity.

On my right was a very delightful little girl with her daddy. She was amusing herself with a game and also talking with daddy.  Quite a number of ladies stopped to talk to both of them and she told them she was three years old.

As me and hubs started to sip our coffees I heard………….

Daddy may I go to playgroup this afternoon? […. may I……from a three year old. Wow!]

I commented to dad on his little’s girl’s remarkably good manners.

Dad.…..Oh, we have the Manners Book at home don’t we, and we like reading it.  She nodded

MeHave you got the ‘why’ book……Dad….No   

Meyou’ve got all the answers then? ….

DadNo…..and looking at his daughter….. no,we haven’t have we?

3 year old.Yes you have. …….

DaddyNo I haven’t …

3 year oldYes you have.

DaddyWhy do you say that?….

3 year old….Because you’re a grown up.

Daddy….Oh, I see; grown ups don’t know everything.

3 year old…… uhm yes.  You’re not mummy are you.

 

 

 

WISHING IN THE WIND

Nothing in particular to report, though there is plenty to occupy my thoughts. There is is just too much.  I don’t imagine for one minute that I am alone in feeling I am on thinking and analysis overload.

HGSQ7108

© M-Digital Doodles

Living in such tumultuous and shambolic times it would be easy to behave like an ostrich and bury my head in the sand.  In the Russian equivalent analogy,  the ostrich  is  ‘hiding its head under its wing’.  The Russian Ostrich would have a cosier and warmer hideout, with the ability for an occasional surreptitious glance out to see if worldly things were a little quieter: peaceful would be really good.

IMG_0896

© Photo By M-Wishing-In-The-Wind