Knobbly Knees


If you have no choice but to resort to vast shopping outlets, Bournemouth’s Castlepoint is far more user friendly than most. This is where we drove today for Jackie’s outfit for her niece Rachel’s wedding to Gareth in a few days’ time.

Castlepoint 1

Jackie led the way across the car park to her shop of choice.

Castlepoint 2

Castlepoint 6Castlepoint 7

I followed slowly, taking in the sculptural railings;

Castlepoint 3

the steps;

Castlepoint 4Castlepoint 5Castlepoint 8

the serried ranks of cars;

Loading car

 people loading their purchases before driving away;

Shoppers 1

and shoppers chatting

Shoppers 2Shoppers 3

and walking about.

Shoe mirror Evans

I joined Jackie in Evans. While she chose some shoes reflected in this nether mirror,

Underwear reflected

I allowed myself to be distracted by a full length one,

Reflections in silver balloons

before taking a multiple selfie reflected in silver balloons from Burton’s staircase, which also afforded a view of

Models Wallis

Wallis models below.

Man passing window displayShoppers through Burton windowShoppers in doorway 2Shoppers in doorway 1

Shoppers through Evans window 1

From the first floor of this open-plan shared store I watched shoppers passing by

Shoppers through Wallis window

or just taking a rest.

Cyclist through Burton window

There was even a cyclist

Car Park through Wallis window

skirting the car park.

Coca Cola can

When we returned to our car, this Coca Cola can rattled across the tarmac at the speed of Usain Bolt.

Christchurch Prory gardens

On our way home we diverted to Christchurch, parking in the Priory Car Park. In the gardens alongside stands this commemorative sculpture:

Christchurch Priory commemoration scupture plaque

Christchurch Priory Commemoration sculpture Sde A

Here is Side A;

Christchurch Priory Commemoration sculpture Sides B & C

here Sides B and C;

Christchurch Priory Commemoration sculpture Side D

and here Side D.

Christchurch Quay 1

A gentleman with a stick made his way along the quayside;

Christchurch Quay 2

as did a number of cyclists. I didn’t think to ask this gentleman why he carried a spade.

Christchurch Harbour 1

A motorised dinghy sped towards the sun,

Group on quayside

and a small group walked away from it.

Dog on balcony

A dog on a balcony was set off barking. Perhaps it suspected someone may be stealing the boats.


A vessel normally used for visitors’ trips hove into view just before we left,


while a paddle boarder approached from the opposite direction.


Jackie was of the opinion that this gull would have won a knobbly knees contest. It would have been a close call between the bird and the lamppost.

This evening we dined on spicy pizza and plentiful salad. Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I started on another bottle of the malbec.




Moshi Monsters

Last night we came well down the field in the pub quiz.  Nevertheless, because it was Christmastime, we won a large box of Maltesers.

As we drove into the grounds at home three deer were caught in our headlights. Nibbled bergenias 12.12 They had clearly been chomping on the bergenia plants which bear evidence of constant nibbling.  Every morning the path beside them bears fresh deer droppings.  The startled animals took off to the far side of the garden, turned to face us, and stood as if, like rabbits, transfixed in the headlights.  Then they were off.  Gone.  Were they the three I had seen on the morning of 6th? (see post) I wondered.

This morning, in an effort to break the back of our Christmas shopping – or maybe just our backs – we drove, on Shelly’s recommendation, to Bournemouth’s Castlepoint shopping centre.  This, we had been reliably informed, was more user-friendly than the ghastly Southampton West Quay.Castlepoint shopping centre 12.12  It most certainly was, and the parking was free.  We knew we were in Dorset rather than Hampshire because even the road signing was clear and in good time.

A week or so ago, Louisa had posted on her Facebook page a photograph of five year old Jessica’s delightful letter to Father Christmas. Jessica's letter to Father Christmas 12.12 Not having the slightest idea what it was that I was signing up to, I sent Louisa a message saying ‘sign me up for a mosh sheey monstys play haws’.  This hadn’t been intended as a Christmas list for family and friends, rather a display of a wonderful snapshot of childhood.  However, that is what it turned out to be, and one of Louisa’s friends, who did know what she was doing, has bought Jessica a moshi monsters play house.  When Jackie and I were shopping for the girls I left Louisa a voicemail message asking for ideas about presents, saying we would take unilateral action if we didn’t have a reply in time.  We were approaching the checkout when Louisa rang back, confirmed that the alternative present we had chosen was probably surplus to requirements, and suggested any moshi monster.  These little creatures are apparently connected with a television programme.  I got the job of returning the Peppa Pig to the Asda shelves.  When I returned from this, Jackie was almost through the checkout.  As she emerged she asked whether I had chosen anything else.  I hadn’t, I explained, because I now knew our gift had to be a Moshi Monster.  ‘They sell those here’, she said.

As Jackie took the rest of our purchases to the car I found a suitable monster and rejoined the queue waiting to pay.  Because of problems with the till, and the young man using it, this one item took rather a long time to purchase.

This evening we drove to Thornhill for an excellent curry in Eastern Nights.  We drank draft Cobra and Bangla.