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Sunday, 13 October 2019

London again

I had another appointment at a London hospital so as it wasn't until 2pm I decided to have a short visit to the Museum of Docklands. It is one of the few bigger London museums I haven't been to and there was an exhibition on about London's hidden rivers.

I only ended up with about an hour but managed a good look at the exhibition. It was really interesting to think of all those rivers mainly hidden underground now. There was a video presentation about opening up one of the rivers which I think was the Effra. The trouble is it would mean demolishing many buildings including Buckingham Palace so I can't see that happening.

It was a frugal day out as I used my bus pass and Oyster Card, took my own food and water. I did buy a coffee at the museum but saved 25p by taking my own travel mug. I also spent £2 on a sticky bun in Tottenham Court Road in aid of Macmillan nurses. So money well spent.

I didn't take many photos as I had such little time but here are a few outside the museum and along Tottenham court road on the way to the hospital.

This last one is the BT tower opened October 8th 1965 as Britain's tallest building. I do remember that and we all thought it was quite amazing that it had a revolving restaurant at the top. I never have been inside. Apparently it was open this year for London Open House but I have missed this for the last few years so maybe next year I will accomplish a visit. I have to go back next week so may revisit the museum.

Monday, 7 October 2019

Black History day and

other things this week.

I walked up to the town to get a paper on Saturday afternoon and thought I would see if anything was still happening in the market for black history day.  There was lots of lively music and dancing and a few stalls with food and beautiful colored African clothes.

There were actually quite a few spectators but not in my photos. I stood and watched and listened for a while. A lady in a beautiful African dress greeted me and told me she hadn't seen me for a while. I had no idea who she was until she enlightened me that we knew each other from a mutual friend and then I realized. It's seeing somebody in a completely different setting throws me.

Another thing this week was cutting back the lavender as mostly the flowers were finished and the bees had gone. I deadheaded the roses and brought the last few rosebuds in along with one last rudbeckia and a few marigolds. I'm hoping the grass won't need cutting again.

The heating has gone on a few times and the cooler weather has encouraged me to do some cooking. I made the second batch of soup this season, using up some country soup mix from the freezer. It was cooked and frozen some while ago and I am trying to eat the freezer as when I move I won't have room for it. It is too big for where I am going and won't be needed as I will not be freezing garden produce. Mind you most of the soup was put into the freezer but will be eaten soon. I also made a batch of Rocky Road for when people pop in. All made from the store cupboard. I have decided to make jam from the blackcurrants in the freezer. I may do that tomorrow. There is also some pumpkin left from last year. Most went in the first batch of soup and the rest will be used for Dunkin Donuts pumpkin muffins which I love. I had them in America a few years ago and Googled a recipe which is pretty close.

So quite a satisfying week.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

Epping forest district museum

DB was feeling a bit down so as Saturday was lovely I suggested a little drive out. We made for Waltham Abbey which is a lovely historic little town. We started with lunch outside a tearoom near the ruins of the Abbey. We both chose warm croissants with cheese and tomato. They were delicious and not a filling I would have thought of in a croissant.

We then had a wander along pedestrianised Sun street and as the museum was open DB suggested we went in. I was a bit dubious as he was on his mobility scooter and the last time I was in the building, it had steep narrow stairs. However the receptionist saw us and came out to tell us it is now wheelchair accessible with a lift. I love museums so was very pleased.

The top floor was an exhibition about Gilwell park which is the nearby scouts headquarters. The rest is the story of the district.

This is the top floor. Little gd would have loved the tepee.

Some of my favourite exhibits.

 The garden but I'm not sure what the lady and child represented.

We finished off sitting in the sun outside a cafe with tea and scones people watching. We were glad we made the most of the good weather as it was horrible the next day.

Friday, 20 September 2019


While I was at DD's the other week, after the dog show she needed to rest but as it was a lovely day I decided to get on the bus to Jaywick. Now this little seaside place has a bad press but years ago we would love a day out there. It is a bit run down in places but the beach is wonderful. I stayed on the bus to the end of the route which was just past the bungalows which were all holiday homes back in the day. I walked along the sea front past a caravan park and was planning to keep going when I saw the Martello tower was open and had an exhibition.

The exhibition was about the flood of 1953 which was particularly interesting as I had just finished reading a book by a man who grew up on Canvey Island. He was 13 at the time of the flood and had to carry his younger brother through the flood waters to a refuge. There was also lots of information about the history of the towers. Lastly I went up on to the roof to see the view.

Such friendly informative people running the exhibition too. Then on the bus back we were on a circular route so went right along the seafront for a while and I was at the front of the top deck so more views. A very good frugal afternoon out. The only spending was a donation to the exhibition.

Friday, 13 September 2019

Fun day dog show

While I was visiting DD at Clacton we went to the National Animal Welfare Trust Clacton fun day and dog show. DD is too poorly to do anything for long but it was just along the road to the nearby village so we went for about an hour with one of her dogs. The other one is too old to get in the car or walk far. We had a walk around the stalls and I bought a reusable sandwich bag. I decided once I get the right fabric I will make some for gifts. Then we had the mandatory coffee and cake. Well it is all for charity.

First we watched the agility competition. Some of the dogs were amazing but so were the owners. They had to be very fit running round the course with their dogs.It was very enjoyable.

This is the rescue dog class and this was a lovely but nervous lurcher. We had a nice chat with it's owners who used to have a greyhound.

  Poppy showing no interest in the rescue class. She wasn't entered but last year while living at mine she won eldest veteran. There were so many entrants it took ages so DD couldn't cope with staying that long so we just watched for a little while.

A beautiful rescued dalmation.

We learnt later the charity made a lot of money which was good.

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Primrose Hill and Regents Canal

I had to go up to the hospital briefly again so decided to walk through Regent's Park up to Primrose Hill and along the bit of Regent's canal that I have not walked before.

I have been meaning to go to Primrose Hill for years so finally got there. The views are amazing and there is a plaque naming the views.

Some sights in Regent's Park - the usual beautiful fountains and flower beds plus lots of strange sculptures.

A man exercising his pet parrot - allowing it to fly free around the bottom of the hill. My son was not at all surprised when I told him as he said unusual sights are usual there. Apparently the Beatles song "The Fool on the Hill" refers to Primrose Hill. I didn't know that.

When I had my fill of the view I went down to the Regent's canal which has the famous Zoo either side for a while. 44 years ago when our son was a baby, we did go by boat from Camden to the Zoo along the canal but I have never walked this bit.

Lord Snowdon's aviary which according to a notice is empty but going to be refurbished for a monkey house.

Some of the big houses next to the canal and a marina.

I came off the canal then and walked past a big social housing estate back to Regent's park and to the tube and home. I always think of that area as full of wealthy people but then when you see the other side of the park and  ordinary people you realize that its the same as anywhere. A mixture of all sorts.

Monday, 2 September 2019

Phoenix Garden

Last Friday I had an appointment at a London Hospital so looked up what was nearby and found the Phoenix Garden. It is not very big but a lovely little oasis in a busy area managed by volunteers.

This is from outside the garden and shows the roof of the new visitor building which is covered with plants.

 A really strange tree of which I don't know the name.

The last picture is lots of different tomato plants.

I love these unexpected little places run by the local community where you can sit quietly with a cup of tea.

Sunday, 18 August 2019

Herts and Essex Country Show

It was very wet this morning but I drove over to my friend just over the Essex/Herts border optimistic that it would clear up as we were going to the country show. The sun came out and at times it was hot enough to be in a t-shirt. I've never been to this show but my friend goes most years. It is held in Brent Pelham which is through lovely countryside.

Conveniently the village tea stall was near the main show ring so we bagged a straw bale to sit on and fetched our tea and cake.

First the birds of prey display with very interesting commentary.

Then all the old tractors when my friend got quite excited to see a little old grey Ferguson the same as one she drove about 60 years ago.  Also followed by the Land Rover enthusiasts.

Our favorite - The duck herding which funnily enough was on countryfile tonight. It was a different trainer but the same team from Norfolk.

We had a walk around the stands and admired all the beautiful craft work. I love these hats.

Lots of heavy horses as well as dogs which are not pictured.

It was a really lovely relaxing day out at this little show. Not as much to see as the bigger shows but it had a great atmosphere and lots of people my friend knew from the villages so we enjoyed that as well.