Monthly Archives: July 2011

To boldly go – poetry and pilgrimage

"I'll get me hat."
Mstr Miff on Graduation Day 19 July 2011

We seem to have a touch of the gremlins here in the tech dept – either that or my computer and camera have had words, so you’ve been spared the group photo of son and his cronies on their graduation day. Never mind – I think the above snap has a certain “Je ne sais quoi” about it, don’t you? A good time was had by all, the rain held off until just after the final snap was taken, and no doubt since then several hundred English graduates when asked “What were you doing on Tuesday?” have seized the opportunity to answer “Oh, I was in something with Patrick Stewart!” (the latter having received an honorary doctorate).

On the other hand, I’m kind of relieved to learn from Mstr M that he was sufficiently overawed by the gravity of the occasion that he abandoned his original plan to have a quick word in Sir P’s ear as he crossed the platform, asking him to insert a certain rude word into his acceptance speech!

I was pondering questions of life, the universe and everything the other day, and came to the conclusion that life’s been very much “Thunder and Rainbows,” lately. Realising this makes it a tad easier for me to hold onto the positives (of which I’m blessed with more than my fair share) and stops me from spiralling down into a spate of existential and vocational angst aka PMS (no, not thatPMS, I’m post menopausal); we’re talking that common complaint – “Poor Me (s).”

So, let’s forget the thunder for now – I’ll update you on a few of my recent “rainbows” over the last month or so: The Grand Mr and Mrs M walking trip and pilgrimage to Iona, obviously – which I’ve written about elsewhere; a flying, unofficial mini -meet with a fellow Shippie and ‘Seabird;’ Ms Miffy’s adventures in, and safe arrival home (what a relief!) from Thailand and Cambodia; Mstr M’s graduation; planning and execution of a Seabird Area Meeting – the which gave me a few grey hairs, but was great fun, and thanks to the rest of the group, seemed to go off well; I’ve picked up a few pieces of writing…Then, even if modesty forbads me to blow my trumpet – I guess I’m allowed to blow a little party popper: a couple of weeks ago something I wrote was set to music and sung in church. Aaagh! Terminal embarrassent alert! May I sit back down now, please? Thank you.

p.s. The urge to rush about the back garden painting everything in sight continues unabated. And I have a new toy – one of those Irish poacher’s ‘Volcano’ kettles to use at Greenbelt, (never try and keep a Miffy from her Nice Cup of Tea!) the use of which is unleashing strange, primitive urges in my good self. It must be my inner hunter-gatherer trying to get out. Though my neighbours may not agree – it stinks to high heaven!

Summer visitors

Why is it that on the rare occasions I decide to have a lazy Saturday morning, there’s always, but always a ring on the doorbell? So it was that today at 10.15am, the mellow tenor tones of Miffdog announced the arrival of a group of JWs: one elderly and one young lady plus a little boy decked out in a spotless suit.

What they must have thought when they were greeted by this dishevelled woman in unmatching pyjamas, porridge-streaked dressing gown and rainbow striped toe separator socks God only knows. I guess they must be used to it by now.

A new hobby

Way back during those long, dark winter evenings, I blogged about the joys of choosing a tent for Greenbelt.

As I have difficulty folding and unfolding your average deckchair, I’ll need to practice in the comfort and privacy of my back garden before I try and pitch camp in full public glare.


So, to the moment of truth…yesterday, when I tried out my super-duper easy-pitch tent for the first time. Replicating that GB ambience went by the wayside, though I did aim for authenticity by wearing 4 layers of clothing and draping my sleeping compartment with enough fleecy blankets to kit out an arctic expedition. And a very good night I had, too.

This morning…not so good. I’d no trouble ‘popping’ the tent up; but folding down…well, let’s just say that in the time it took to upend it, my cosy green caterpillar-like abode transformed into a huge, threatening amorphous mass, billowing round the back garden like a barrage balloon. It unleashed in me (and in Mr M) dark forces that no amount of watching instructional videos on Youtube could purge. And there are no shortage of them, believe me. To wrestle the sodding thing into submission requires arms the length of a gorilla, and the strength of one too.

We, or to be truthful, Mr M, managed in the end. Barrage balloon is sitting there in the study, neatly packaged into its 26″ disc…biding its time….

Hmmm. 🙁