A Further Piece Of Quirkiness

Jackie gathering flowers

3rd April 2014
On a wander round the garden this morning, I added periwinkle to the photographic gallery of our plants. Gathering daffodils, Jackie stands on what we were to name the Heligan Path, because it was so overgrown that we did not know it was there.

Curry/PC World delivered the fridge/freezer promptly as promised. Until they came we continued moving stuff around. This involved carting some furniture upstairs.
I telephoned Neff customer support line in an unsuccessful attempt to be talked through disenabling the child lock on the hobs. Although the woman who tried to help me was very helpful it didn’t seem to work. It was fun seeking out the relevant model number, which would enable her to know how to advise me. This, you see, was on the underside of the equipment that now formed part of the kitchen surface. Clearly I had to take out the drawer underneath, but then, how was I to read the figures? Lying prostrate on the worktop and sticking my head into the narrow space didn’t seem to be an option.
This is where the Canon S100 camera came into its own. I held it under the plate, and after several goes, managed to obtain one image that was not too blurred for me to read the number.
Later in the morning we gathered up some spring flowers to take to Pippa in Spencers as a token of our thanks. This personable young woman found time to have a friendly conversation.
We then visited Costa coffee for some Wi-Fi time, and I posted my blog entry for 1st. An antique shop didn’t have a suitable replacement door knocker. If you are thinking of visiting before we find one, flip the letterbox repeatedly and yell loudly.
Back home we continued the cleaning and sorting. I then tackled the scary task of attempting to set up the home hub in preparation for its activation tomorrow. It remains to be seen how successful I have been. In the process I think I discovered a further piece of quirkiness. The previous owner had his office in the living room where there is a television aerial socket, but, as far as we can tell, no telephone point. The only place allocated for a telephone appears to be in the bedroom above. In the hope that we will be able to access the hub wirelessly through the ceiling, I set up the telephone and hub, I hope, in the upper room. Our predecessor definitely used his laptop in the room below. If that doesn’t work for us we may not be able to contain our screams of anguish.
My next task was to clear a path to the washing machine. This was no mean undertaking.
In the evening we set out on a search for any Chinese restaurant that was not Lotus in New Milton. There were a number of takeaways scattered about, but we felt we had earned a sit down. Following circuitous diversions across the forest, we were led to the Yenz in Brockenhurst which was very classy. The establishment was rightly proud of its head chef. The food was excellent, and the T’Sing Tao beer thirst quenching.
Back at Old Post House we just about managed to climb the stairs to bed.

Norman’s Parrot

This morning, after very early delivery of my NatWest Your Points vouchers, Jackie drove us to Curry/PC World in Christchurch where I bought a new laptop and collected my older cleaned-up one. This time I have a Hewlett Packard Pavilion. Never having used Air Miles or Your Points before, I was rather amazed to learn that we could obtain cash vouchers for them. So that was very handy.
From Emery Down to a long way along the A35 we followed an open-topped Triumph convertible from a previous era, driven by a white-haired gentleman with a blonde hoodie passenger. For most of the time this car exceeded the speed limits, occasionally emitting blackish clouds from its exhaust pipe. As Jackie said, turning off the switch which allowed our car to inhale ‘fresh’ air from outside, ‘It reminds us of what cars used to smell like’.
We were in the store for a very long time, firstly because they were short-staffed, and secondly because the explanation of the pros and cons of the various machines was doing my head in. For example, Mike, who was the very patient salesperson who helped me, said Curry’s recommended one security system that I had once used but changed when told it was no good. Towards the end of the process Jackie took part in a customer survey. She said, on my behalf, that the absence of a customer toilet was a serious omission. I had already pointed out that this lack seriously affected my concentration, and was therefore escorted to the staff facilities. Otherwise, we had no complaints.
Taking a stroll round the grounds after lunch I investigated Eleanor’s abandoned den. Until late last year this young lady and her friend Henry spent many happy hours building a home of their own, somewhat appropriately within the branches of a vast rhododendron. Jessica and Imogen had enjoyed playing in it last May. When Eleanor moved away with her family the abode fell into disuse.
My friend Norman, now unable to perform his priestly activities, is possessed of a beautiful Welsh singing voice which he used in expected and unexpected ways. With a great sense of pageant Norman is a brilliant writer and deliverer of sermons. He would on occasion burst into song from the pulpit. He would also, when it seemed helpful, bring along a prop, such as the parrot a mutual friend Janice once gave him. As he mounted the pulpit steps and gradually emerged into his own delivery perch, the congregation was treated to the sight of this bird upon Father Norman’s shoulder.
Norman's parrot
When preparing for a down-sizing house move Norman asked me if I could find a home for his parrot. I was sure Eleanor would love it to join all her other embellishments to her den. That is where it ended up. Today it still guards Eleanor’s discarded wind chimes. When we change our own dwelling place we will take it with us.
I needed that little diversion before wrestling with the new laptop this afternoon. The first hour or so seemed quite smooth. Then I came to installing Microsoft Office. I can’t bear to detail the problems on the way. Suffice it to say I forgot a password I’d given at the beginning and had to reset it, which brought its own complications. Then I couldn’t find it in the pc. How was I to know I wouldn’t get an automatic icon on the screen? After all there are ones for things like e-bay and Wild Tangent Games which I will never use. All in all the Office installation took about two neck and shoulders stiffening hours, and I’m afraid I did utter the odd expletive.
I seem to be secure; am in a Cloud somewhere; and if I am not very careful I’m on a webcam, looking extremely perplexed.
Five year old Malachi, where are you? I need your guidance and assistance.
When I eventually tore myself away from the new laptop, on which I am finishing this post, last night’s superb jalfrezi meal was reprised. As always, this involved additions to the time-improved base, in this case supplementary freshly cooked chicken and chickpeas, which seemed quite a pleasing choice. I finished the cabernet sauvignon. Jackie abstained.