Water, Water…… Hardly A Drop To Drink

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The best part of the day was taken up with body maintenance. We began with a drive to New Hall Hospital and a post-operative examination by Mr. Kask, the surgeon, who pronounced progress satisfactory. We did not take a diversion on the way back home because I had a G.P. appointment after lunch.

There was one complication during the knee replacement that I have felt indelicate to mention before. The insertion of a catheter is routine there. They couldn’t get mine in. A urologist was summoned to do the deed. An enlarged prostate was considered to be the problem. This was news to me. Rather unpleasant symptoms continued for the next three weeks. Given that my other knee replacement is due in about four months, it seemed a good idea to deal with the prostate post haste. That is why I saw G.P. Doctor Jansen this afternoon. She prescribed antibiotics, asked for a urine sample, and made a referral to Mr. Guy, the urologist at New Hall.

After this, Jackie drove us into the drier and drier forest. On the road to Exbury a very small grey pony tagged along with his bigger cousins, foraging for what fresh greenery could be found.

Squirrel in dried up pond

Not far on a squirrel squatted on the bed of a pool that normally contains paddling mallards and larger ponies up to their knees in the water they drink.

Couple in water

There was, however, no shortage of seawater at Lepe beach, where synchronised swimming

and solitary sailboarding was under way.

Back on the Exbury road, a group of small cattle found some potable water, slaked their thirsts, and pestered the traffic.

The rice Jackie produced this evening – so packed with chopped omelette, chestnut mushrooms, peppers, onions and peas – was a meal in itself. It was, however, accompanied by pork spare ribs in barbecue sauce. Neither of us imbibed.

On The Beach

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Jackie often points out potential subjects for photographs for which I take the credit. This morning she alerted me to an array of spiders’ webs on the decking.

Spiders' websSpiders' webs – Version 2

All that was picked up by the sunshine on this example was the lower half of the larger web. Jackie held back a few shadow-casting leaves and I bent a bit to include the lower construction. This is what we jointly produced.

This morning we drove over to Shelly and Ron’s with enough of Jackie’s exquisite chicken Jalfrezi and vegetable samosas to feed up to 40 people at Ron’s 70th birthday party tomorrow. I also gave them a couple of 10″ x 8″ prints from Shelly’s party last week.

Down to the beach

We continued on to Friar’s Cliff Café for brunch. naturally, I shot a few beach scenes.

Not that one.

These:

Bicycles and beachDog on beachBeach scene 1Beach scene 4Beach scene 3Beach scene 2Beach scene 6Beach scene 7Beach scene 15Beach scene 14Beach scene 13Beach scene 12Beach scene 10Beach scene 11Ice creams at the beach hutsBeach scene 18Paddleboarder, jetskierPaddleboarderBeach scene 17Beach scene 16Beach scene 19Three girlsMobile phone readerBeach scene 20

Against the backdrop of the Isle of Wight and the Needles, we have water activities including kayaking, rowing, yachting, paddle boarding, jet skiing, swimming, and paddling. There is lounging in the sand soaking up the sun, sheltering under parasols and behind windbreaks, turning cartwheels, digging with buckets and spades, kicking beach balls; occupying beach huts, enjoying green ice creams, and, of course, employing the screens of mobile phones.

This evening we dined on fish fingers, chips, onion rings, and fried tomatoes. I finished the Cotes du Rhone and Jackie had imbibed her Hoegaarden on the patio beforehand.

 

Savouring The Meaning Of Life

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On this dull but dry morning, we transported more garden refuse to the dump and returned with a shove ha’penny board. First of all, having just received a contract giving a start date of 31st March 2014, but no bill I made another telephone call to British Gas. This time I was informed that my position was justifiable. Having consulted her manager the representative told me she had to “monitor the account” until 23rd August, but I need not “stress about the three years” during which I have not been billed.

Before we arrived home, we drove to Friar’s Cliff Café for lunch, then on to the forest.

Always swim between the red and yellow flags

A large banner on the beach at Friar’s Cliff advised swimmers to stay between two flags;

Beach scene 6

some followed the advice;

Beach scene 5

others didn’t.

Beach Scene 1Beach scene 2

Young families went for a paddle,

Boy digging in sand 1Boy digging in sand 1

or, like this energetic boy tossing up spits of sand,

Beach scene 3Beach scene 4Beach scene 7employed their buckets and spades.

Beach scene with rowers

A pair of rowers gently glided by.

Pulled pork burger 1

Jackie enjoyed her baked potato filled with beans, coleslaw, and cheese with a lavish salad. I was, for the first time ever in this excellent establishment, was disappointed with my pulled pork burger, chips, and salad. Any relative difference in size is purely the result of perspective.

Pulled pork burger 2

My problem was that the few bits of lettuce beneath the burger constituted the salad, and the burger was beef with a topping of the shredded pork. I didn’t think that lived up to the above description, but was prepared to write it down to experience and make no complaint. We were, however, asked how our meal was, so, politely, and in a friendly manner, I explained why it wasn’t what I expected from the description. This was accepted and the description will be changed.

Rosa rugosa AlbaRosa rugosa Alba hips and blackberries

At the top of the cliff a hedge containing rosa rugosa Alba with its splendid hips,

Blackberries and rosa rugosa Alba hips

blackberries,

Blackberries and thistle

thistles,

Budweiser bottle in hedge

and Budweiser, tolerates the fiercest winds.

Blackberries in heather

Blackberries also mingle with

Heather 1Heather 2

the heather on the moors.

Horses in stream 1

Horses at North Gorley preferred to do their paddling in the stream;

Horses in stream 2Horses in stream 3Horses in stream 4

 

one, rather shy, took refuge behind its companion.

Bullock/42

As we approached Stoney Cross Plain, Jackie spotted a bullock she thought had found the meaning of life.

You have seen what we had for lunch, so will not be surprised to learn that a small amount of Mr Chan’s Take Away sufficed for our sustenance this evening.

 

 

 

 

Eyes Peeled

MothAs I attempted, last night, to photograph an interesting moth in the Print Room, the creature flew off. This afternoon, Becky produced this image. When I confessed my failure, a certain amount of hilarity ensued. There is, you see, a family myth that whenever I attempt to photograph anything possessing wings, it disappears.

Once more the rain hammered down all day. I retreated to my slide files and scanned more of those from the May 2004 Barbados trip.

There was great excitement when the day of Sam’s arrival dawned. Jessica, Louisa, Chris, Frances, Fiona, and I boarded the splendid yacht belonging to Stein and Diana. After 59 days alone at sea, our son was coming in ahead of the field. all he had to do was hug the northern tip of Barbados, not too tightly, so he neither crashed on the rocks, nor sped out to Cuba on the prevailing current. Not as simple as it sounds.

Jessica and Louisa 1Jessica and Louisa 4.04 002Jessica and Diana 4.04

Louisa

As we reached the open waters of the Caribbean Sea, Jessica, Louisa, and Diana dived overboard for an invigorating swim. Although bright blue and bracing, I am told the water was somewhat colder than it looked.

Stein in rigging 1

Stein in rigging 2

Soon, Stein scaled his rigging and took up the role of advance scout, as he scanned the horizon for the small red speck that would be Sam’s boat, Pacific Pete.

Suddenly a sighting was announced, and, eyes peeled, we all peered into the distance. This, as it emerged, is what we saw. Sam is in each picture. Getting nearer all the time.

Sam first sighting 1

Sam first sighting 3Sam first sighting 4Sam first sighting 4.04 005
Sam first sighting 6

Could the heightened emotions on our boat possibly have matched those of our son?

Sam arriving 1

Sam arriving 2Sam arriving 3Sam arriving 4

As he approached, only the long camera lens could discern details which escaped the naked eye.

Sam arriving 5

Eventually, as Sam reached the island, alongside which he had more rowing to do to arrive at the quay at Port St Charles, we could greet each other across the waves.

This evening we dined on Mr Pink’s fish and chips, mushy peas, pickled onions, and gherkins. Becky and I finished the white Cotes du Rhone, Ian drank San miguel, and Jackie drank Hoegaarden.

Hues Of Blue

On this day, with temperatures around 30 degrees, according to the meteorologists, because of a shift in the jet stream, we are enjoying ‘Spanish weather’.

In case any of my commenters have missed Becky’s observation on yesterday’s post, this is what she added to it this morning: ‘Wow. What lovely followers you have, Dad. x’

Rose - red A small red rose standing in a tub by our front door, and requiring more space, will eventually be transplanted to the rose garden. Taking her first outing since her knee operation, Jackie drove me to the surgery at Milford on Sea, for me to hand in a repeat prescription request. We met Giles in the car park, and had a short conversation. Feeling confident enough to return home without an escort, my chauffeuse, dropped me near the Beach House hotel, and I walked back by the cliff top/Shorefield route. Whilst I was enjoying myself, Jackie continued to Tesco’s for a shop, and watered the hanging baskets on her return, thus saving me that latter task. ThistleConvolvulus

Thistles and convolvulus twinkled in the hedgerows.

Sunlight on The Solent

Sunlight glistened on The Solent’s various hues of blue,

Fence and Solent

its passing vessels, and their wake.

Footpath down cliff

You would need to wander down this cliff path to encounter the dog this woman was walking by the breakwater.

Swimmers

I am not really up to descending to the water’s edge, so was unable to warn the fairly numerous swimmers risking a skewering by the WW2 hazards.

Couple on beach with dogs

Elsewhere sun-tans were sought.

By late afternoon, many of the baskets needed a further soaking. I rendered minimal assistance with this.

Hoverfly on clematis Comtesse de Bouchardclematis Comtesse de Bouchard

A hoverfly, sheltered by a higher bloom in full sun, flanked by budding guards, investigated the flower of clematis Comtesse de Bouchard.

This evening we dined on fillet steak on a bed of onions, garlic, peppers, and mushrooms; chips; and runner beans; followed by mixed fruit crumble and custard. Jackie drank Hoegaarden, whilst I imbibed Louis de Camponac cabernet sauvignon 2014.