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.






Mirror and mantelpiece

Yesterday morning Jackie visited Molly’s Den where she bought a mirror for the wall above the fireplace. On the left of the mantelpiece stands the miniature mock Ordnance Survey Map that Becky made for us almost two years ago. Please ignore the fact that we have not redecorated since the fireplace was put in.

It seems a crime to obtain the bevelled glass and wonderfully hand-carved frame for £40, simply because such craftsmanship is now out of fashion. Observant readers may have observed the finial to the left hand vase. When these ornaments were in Jackie’s parents’ home her father had used plasticine to make good the break. She has made good the break with Blu-Tac.

Reflected drawings

The reflected images in the glass are of two family portraits. That on the viewer’s left has appeared before, on May 3rd 2014:

The other

is one of my proudest possessions. It was produced by Flo when she was about 8 and asked at school to draw something that made her happy. The placement of herself is quite brilliant. The drawing stayed on the wall for a year and was presented to me at the end of that time.

Magnolia Vulcan

In the garden the blooms of the Vulcan magnolia are now opening out;

Clematis Lidl blue

and the clematis Lidl blue, so named because it was an unnamed cheapie from that store,

Rose Penny Lane

and the rose Penny Lane, benefitting from one of the Rose Garden mirrors, climb up one side of the potting shed.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s luscious liver, bacon, and sausage casserole, with creamy mashed potato, crunchy carrots and green beans. Jackie drank Peroni, and I finished the Madiran.

We Could Have Done A Runner

Frost lay on the bright, sunlit, garden this morning;

Frost on bench

glittering on benches,

Frost on gernaium leaves

and on geranium leaves;

Frozen pond 1

and the Waterboy pond was frozen. Abstractedly.

This afternoon Jackie drove Becky and me to The Beach House via Milford on Sea Post Office where I posted the prints to Frances.

This hotel, formerly Westover Hall, was built in 1897 from a design by the famous Victorian architect Arnold Mitchell for Alexander Siemens. The magnificent building was a beach house looking across the Solent to The Isle of Wight.

Firs backlit

I have often photographed the firs in the front garden, but never before against the lowering sun.

The Needles and lighthouse 1

The Needles and lighthouse 2Isle of Wight, The Needles, lighthouse

Similarly, this view of The Needles and their flashing lighthouse, is no stranger to my lens. It is the pastel shades of the scene that appealed today.

Cyclist at sunset

Isle of Wight, Needles, cyclist

A cyclist,

Isle of Wight, Needles, walkersSunset walkers

and walkers promenaded alongside the changing palette.

Sunset reflected

Reflecting a new meaning to solar lighting, the sky appeared to have illuminated some neighbouring rooms.

Fir gnarled

Near these modern homes, in The Beach House Garden, a gnarled pine has staggered to the ground and created a Hobbit house with similar internal lighting.

When I had finished wandering I joined the ladies inside for tea and cakes. Becky said I should get outside again because the light had already changed. I handed her the camera. She went off to collect some images of her own. They included


a dovecote;


an anchor;

Herringbone path

a herringbone path;

Sunset 1Sunset 2

and more sunsets,

Walkers in sunset 3

one of which was a backcloth to further walkers.

Fire escape

Turning to the building itself, she spotted the fire escape outside,


and, inside, the hall of mirrors from which all the loos lead.

One of these doors was labelled

Bottomless Pit

She was unable to resist trying the door which was locked. Anyone fancy writing a story about it?

PS. Poet Rummager took up the challenge, with a beautiful poem. See the pingback on her comment below

About to put the car key in the ignition, Jackie asked: ‘Has anyone paid?’ at which Becky and I both leaped (poetic licence here) out of the car and sped to the reception desk. The man who had served us had binned our bill because he assumed his female colleague had taken our money. He had to put it all back into the computer. We thought the charge very reasonable and exchanged jokes about having missed the opportunity to do a runner.

This evening Ian drove us to Dynasty Indian restaurant in Brockenhurst where we enjoyed excellent food and service. My choice was Lamb Tikka jalfrezi with special fried rice. We all shared onion bhajis. Becky drank rose wine and the rest of us drank Kingfisher.

Quiet Reflection

After a morning clearing shrubberies and watering window boxes, we took a trip to Efford Recycling Centre. Although we did dump more sections of aluminium frames, probably the last of the alleged ‘greenhouse, unassembled’, the real purpose of the trip was to seek out mirrors from the sales section.

Jackie found two perfect specimens.

Yes, we know each would be an acquired taste, but for what we had in mind they were perfect.

Penny Lane is a climbing rose. Just about a foot tall at the moment it will climb to 8′. The first new bud emerging early this morning was fully opened by the afternoon.

Margaret Merrill, equally virginal crisp and fresh two days ago, glowed, blowsy, in the morning light.

This gloriously hot and sunny afternoon I wandered around the garden whilst Jackie went off to do some shopping.

From the second armchair in the rose garden one can see past tall roses in the Oval Bed to the gladioli in the former compost bed, around flutter numerous butterflies like this Small White:

Leaving the rose garden  let us walk through the arch and turn right on the pergola path where agapanthus nods to petunias and montbretia hides in long ornamental grasses.

From the grass patch to the left, looking over the top of the Dump Bench, so called because it was an early purchase from the recycling centre, the stable door is glimpsed.

We have quite a lot of montbretia. It likes shade but doesn’t always hide,

although these pink hollyhocks are attempting to do so.

Later, we hung our mirrors. Now, please don’t run away with the idea that we have both been struck by an attack of narcissism. There is enough seating in the rose garden now to encourage quiet reflection.

The mirrors are positioned to reflect the sunlight into darker corners. One, with the armchair, and the clock, provides a cosy corner for reflection in both senses.

In the third Test Match, Australia rallied and set England 121 to win. The home team lost two wickets in reaching the target.

Our dinner this evening was provided by Hordle Chinese Take Away. Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I made further inroads into the beaujolais.