London (change)
Today 26°C / 17°C
Tomorrow 23°C / 15°C
13/06/2013 at 14:55

Frank, I remember very well that when my Grandma was alive (Mum's Mum), everyone would converge at her home, one aunt would get on the piano, another with a beautiful voice would start off the singing and a good time was had by all. All the 'kids' took advantage of several bannisters, it being a 3 storey house.  When Grandma went, everything came to a halt.  Shame. 

My grandchildren are very fortunate that their greatgrandma, whose parents were missionaries in China, prior to the invasion by Japan in 1937, wrote everything down and this is now in my daughter's possession, together with loads of photos.  I think they are very lucky.

13/06/2013 at 15:51

Tina, it was our house that got everyone, we had the biggest house and the fresh food, plenty of bacon ham and eggs plus what came out of a large garden. The front room only open for get together Sunday tea or my piano practice would be crowded, me on piano and they were all singers, I could play Alice blue gown, just like the ivy, come into the garden Maud without looking at the music, I really wanted to play all the Glen Miller songs but got voted down, oh well I did carry on the tradition when Joan and I had our own family Joan was a very good singer and I would be on the accordion, the kids still talk about those days and we were all together yesterday for my Grandsons birthday. We are still all very close, as last man standing in the extended family group they all now want to know about life before they arrived.

G/G, my mother told me the family history mainly because she wanted me to have goals way above what they had achieved, saying that Uncle Raymond was a director at Dorman Long Steel. I did draw the line at gentleman Farmer, she wanted to send me to college, and Sea going Officer on Cargo ships, one fault with that was I could not cross the bridge over the river Tees without feeling sea sick. Dad a bit of a wit said " you went overboard with that one Gladys" Engineering was out, but put the immovable block against the immovable object and atomic explosion, I became an engineer.


13/06/2013 at 18:39

Frank,you were so lucky that your mother told you so much about your family history,I know some but not as much as I would like about mine.My grandfather served with the Somerset Light Infantry out in India and kept a notebook with details of his travels,he never talked about it a great deal,but I wish I,d tried harder to get him to relate his experiences.Once home he had one of the first coal barges in the area,and worked hard all his life, always smoking a pipe occasionally enjoying a drink and dying in 1990 aged 103.His brother a Coldstream Guard was killed in France.

13/06/2013 at 18:59

Gilly Soldiers tend to live for the day, keeping a diary was not something many did, I have hundreds of pictures and to me they all tell a story, bring back memories and names long forgotten. We think our lives not important or out of the ordinary so why bother, now my Grandchildren really want to know so now it gets written down as going through the photo's the memory comes back, not all good though.
When I did the BBC documentary they had gone through some of the stories and wanted to know about what I thought mundane bits, when it was all put together those mundane bits brought it all to life so write it all down even if you do not think it matters.
One grandson told me he now knows where he gets his crackpot ideas from, I am still working that one out.


13/06/2013 at 19:14

My late father in law was a war & peacetime soldier. He was awarded the Burma Star and had been a prisoner of the Japanese. He would not speak about his experiences to my husband, his son. I do know that he had nightmares until the end of his life, and his wife told me they were about the time he woke up and found his mate dead at the side of him with his throat cut. He was the kindest most charitable and hard working man I've ever met, he worked part time until he was nearly 80. I am so happy that his son, my husband takes after him.

13/06/2013 at 19:29

Frank, if your grandson gets his crackpot ideas from you (not that he would!), make sure you don't get a shed.  Englishmen always invent stuff in sheds, don't know what it is, but there you go.  Cockerell and the Hovercraft, Barnes Wallis and the Bouncing Bomb, and I should know, but have forgotten, the chap who invented the Jet Engine (Mitchell springs to mind, but think it's wrong, as he gave us the Spitfire).

Give an Englishman a shed, and as long as he's bonkers enough, sure as eggs is eggs, he'll go and invent something.

Maud, hope both you and your Dad are feeling better.  Both Asda and Tesco do a very good home shopping service on t'interweb, get yourself a coffee, do your shop, and ring for a take-away.  They deliver late at night and early-ish in the morning, so should be able to fit it in around hospital visits.  At least they don't think it's cancer, as it's always a worry once it's been in someone's system.  Sending some positive vibes, sounds like you both need a bit of a rest!

13/06/2013 at 19:45

MMP, too late he already has a shed, the sounds that come from it make me think he is inventing an even bigger noise box for his guitar.
Luckily at the moment he is busy renovating a house for when he marries later this year, being a Shop fitter helps with that, my Son, his dad tells me he comes up with solutions to problems that no one else has even seen, looks as if my engineering genes have been passed on then.


13/06/2013 at 20:07

MMP, the Mitchell you are thinking of is probably RJ Mitchell, the inventor of the spitfire, Sir Frank Whittle was the inventor of the jet engine and what a difference he has made to the world today.

13/06/2013 at 20:10

I'm getting annoyed with other neighbours that have fruit trees. The problem is the pests - if they don't look after them, mine also get their pests and diseases. It's a pain. If they don't want them ... grrr.

And don't get me started on all of the dandelions, catsears (Hypochaeris), hawkweeds (Hieracium) and hawkbeards (Crepis) its like everyone around here has given up cutting grass - I know a wild garden can look nice - but - an unmanaged overgrown jungle? - if you can't be bothered to look after a garden - move into a flat!  give someone else a chance.

13/06/2013 at 20:27

HI Time for a RANT  at the chemist last week the assistant handed the lady in front of us her perscripton and asked for two euro perscripton charge said she will bring it back later turned to my wife and said terrable isnt it my wife said i will swap you we paid 104 euros we could not say bring it back later feel better now


13/06/2013 at 22:27

JB, glad you feel better, but your post is a bit mystifying to me. Do you live in Ireland?

Pagey, I sympathise. My elderly neighbour can't look after his garden very well and it is full of dandelions. I was out there spraying my roses along the boundary and he gave me a real telling off. He pointed to a rose of his that had died (of neglect) and claimed I had killed it with the spray. Surprised, I let him rant for a while, then walked away. I'd help him if he was less hostile, but his constant accusations make it difficult to approach him. 


13/06/2013 at 23:26

Fred, thanks, know it was Mitchell that invented the Spitfire, and couldn't remember the name of the chap that invented the jet engine.  Know it was definitely a shed, albeit a very big one, as in one of his tests he couldn't get the thing to switch off, and before he could cut the fuel supply it went bang and set fire to the shed.

Think I need a shed, without one the only thing I could come up   with is a radio-controlled rat in order to scare ladies (and some men) everywhere.  Of course, it would be marketed as a cat toy - I'm sure no-one would buy it in order to scare their mum!  Or Calorie-free chocolate, but then I'm sure that there are several genii with a few million working on that one as we speak - the inventor of that would make an absolute fortune.

Several people in the area have sheds, very posh ones, with hot-tubs in them.  What a waste!

14/06/2013 at 05:28

planted out mr runner beans monday morning where doing very well until i checked yesterday every single one had been shredded i felt like crying the culprits....pidgeons and or pheasants so after running round trying to find netting pegs and sticks for their defence erecting it all i was feeling very fed up..thinking of bird scarers now as a deterent anyone any ideas of home made ones its an open windy site thinking flapping noisy things like pidgeons i guess

14/06/2013 at 08:23

Old CD,s on a bit of string might help.(we always used the free CD,s that came with newspapers,don,t know if they still ever do those)

14/06/2013 at 08:48

I find two yappy little dogs a pretty good deterrent, but that may be too extreme a solution for most people!

14/06/2013 at 10:32

GG, you know what you can do with your yappy dogs. I could hear the 'dawn' chorus this morning. I find it really annoying I can now no longer have my bedroom window open because of these inconsiderate people.  It's quite obvious they just chuck the dog out at 6.30, go about their morning ablutions and 30 mins later, let it back in.  During this time, big dog let out to bark to his heart's content. Then at 7.30 yappy sausage dog is out.  Note to self - do something about it!!

14/06/2013 at 13:28

HI Yes GG I live in dublin

14/06/2013 at 20:52

James, in Wales we get free subscriptions so the fees are all unfamiliar to me.

TT, I don't actually let them go out and yap! But if they see bigger birds in the garden - pigeons, magpies, seagulls - they have a whale of a time chasing them off and barking at them. Couldn't stop them barking at that time however hard I tried. There is a garden at the bottom of ours where a small dog is allowed to yap to his heart's content and I worry (a bit) that the other neighbours think it is my dogs.


14/06/2013 at 22:34

An accolade and a rant.
About to call British Gas on Saturday morning when the phone rang and a voice said hello this it British Gas. Imagine my total amazement that now with modern phones you do not even need to dial the number. Still sitting there with my mouth wide open the caller said your Boiler Maintenance is due can we come next week.
Still in a state of wonder I fixed it for Wednesday then told them my heating would not go off no matter what I did, OK do not worry we will check it all out for you and fix it, That is exactly what they did, a cheerful fitter who knew his job came in shut it all down fitted several new bits then tested it all out and left still smiling, he was fast clean and best of all happy in his work and it showed so well done BG. "Oh" and it was all under the insurance.

In T@#@#'s doing some shopping I checked out the meat shelves, I just check prices before going to my friendly village Butcher. Why as soon as the sun shines do they cover most of the meat with sickly gooey over sweetened BBQ sauce stuff, if I did want to BBQ and I usually do not, not wanting to eat cindered sausage or badly under cooked chicken then I would make and add my own BBQ sauce, not gooey or over sweetened.
There were some packs of New Zealand Lamb chops so thin that just dropping them into the pan would have shrivelled them to nothing and they cost £6.50 a pack. In my local Butchers I got four big fat local sourced lamb chops and some home cooked ham for £7 so what is not to like about your local shops I ask. "Oh" and not a sickly gooey BBQ sauce in sight.
Had the chops with garlic charlotte potato's, mint sauce and  peas tonight absolutely delicious soft moist and plenty to get your teeth into,


14/06/2013 at 22:53

Having just read a few pages earlier, re unsolicited mail. I usually send back in company As envelope, with mail from company B, andthen to company B,  mail from company C. and so on. Gives me great pleasure, and after a few months their mail stops, but others  join the queue. 

heard on our local radio, that they actually shred the junk mail before returning to the company.

Well it keeps the world revolving, and no cost to me, AND i don't have to recycle either.  

Never had any faith in these preference services, who profess to stop all this C---,  telephone, etc,. don't find any actually work. Apparently your name goes on from today, but from tomorrow another company doesn't need to comply. Also if a company phones you, and only has a number, and no name, the TPS is unable to do anything about it. they only stop calls from companies, not numbers.

Rant over!!!