Monday, 29 August 2011

Onslow Bank Steam Rally

What have you been up to this Bank Holiday? We went to the Steam Rally at Onslow Bank today - just West of Shrewsbury and about ten miles away from where we live. Quite a big one this year - 50th Anniversary. The wind was a bit cold and the sky was a bit overcast but we downed tools early and got there soon after 9.30am. Managed to park up reasonably easy. Come on, I'll take you round.

An old 'International' or a ' Massey Harris' ? , whatever - just look at those spiky metal wheels. They are called 'spade lugs,' (fitted because of the lightness of the tractor and ability to grip the terrain)

And the Fergies - this one had a Ferguson baler attached to the side - there are only eight of these balers world wide.  When Massey Harris took over Ferguson, their own model of baler was superior to this one. Thus this model was discontinued owing the tendency of throwing up massive clouds of dust  when in operation, practically exterminating the unfortunate operators. The one above is apparently the only one left in working order.

Field of corn all cut - these two are adjusting the transport wheels on the straw binder to travel to the next field to be harvested.

This little dog poked her head around the door of a road maker's site caravan. It was so neat with wood stove, kettle boiling, bunk bed. Barriers, picks, forks and road lamps parked outside the door.

There was the 'Posh Pram' parade, the barrel organs, the craft marquee and the fairground merry-go-round.

The beautifully carved polished wooden bowls.

And wooden flowers.

And the time we spent talking to the Master Craftsman.

 Just a perfect day!

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Baby Blue

This is my car. It's the first car I've ever owned in my life, chosen by me, with my name on the registration document, my name on the insurance documents, my name on the MOT certificate and my name on the cheque book that bought it. I've owned it now for 2 years and it's my pride and joy. Our grand daughter has been staying with us for the past month. We took her home today. She lives just the other side of Chester, about sixty miles away. We'd parked outside her house and were waving fond goodbyes, turned the ignition key - dead as a dodo. Not a bleep. Not a peep! My Other Half turned the ignition key four or five times - nothing! 'It's the Distributor cap - I'm sure it's the Distributor cap - I'd better take it off and have a look!' 'And perhaps you'd better not!' By this time I was already dialling the Road Rescue on my mobile. 'We'll be with you within the hour. What's your mobile number?' In an emergency can you reel off your mobile number just like that? In all honesty I haven't got a clue what mine is. But he said it didn't matter because the number had come up on the screen and he'd got all the details .... Other Half was cheerfully envisaging it being towed off to the scrap yard or a bill of at least £1,000 to put it right. Anyway, true to his word, the RAC man was there on the hour. He drove up along side, took one look, said, 'Try the key again.' The engine started up on the first turn and purred like a self satisfied pussy. 'Ahem, I think you might have flooded the engine. Give me a bell if you get stuck again on the way home.' We got home safe and I still love my Focus!

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday

Two whole weeks have just disappeared like the speed of light and I haven't ........ posted on Shadow Shot Sunday that is! Shame on me! But this week I took the day off and went chasing shadows around Shrewsbury Quarry!

There's a wooden board just as you go in which gives you a potted history of how it all came about! During the 14th century, the Dingle Garden was actually just a wet quarry hole consisting of poor quality red sandstone and the gardens were developed over a period of time. In 1647, Mrs Foxhall was burned at the stake there for poisoning her husband! (All you who are rotten cooks beware - Thank the Good Lord for Gordon Ramsey, Nigella Lawson and Delia she says! )
 Anyway, moving on ......

Come and walk with me along Victoria Quay - the old cabin cruiser is still moored up along the bank. Look how it reflects in the water of the Severn

Or take a laid back cruise along the river. I really want to do that one day!

Look at the ducks, they're in no hurry...

Autumn's right on our door step. Everywhere underneath the trees, a deepening mass of crackly copper bronze leaves and brittle seeds.

Let's walk along the pathway

See how the sun has cast a shadow on the peeling paintwork.

Look you can see the Shoemaker's Arbour just across the lake.

And take in the reflection on a tiny inlet.

And trace the shadow of the ferns and the narrow bendy tree.
 I've loved your company. Thank you so much.
Happy Shadow Shot Sunday

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Day out at Shrewsbury Flower Show

Here in the outback,  August is the month of  'The Show'   Practically every village hosts it's own local 'Do' .........  Sort of a grand last fling of summer!   John over at has just posted  a brilliant photographic blog post of their local one. So John if you read this - just when you thought it was all over (humble apologies), but here comes another!
I mentioned that our grand daughter was staying with us for her holiday, well yesterday, just the two of us - took ourselves off to Shrewsbury Flower Show. This is an annual event, the show, I mean, but something we don't go to every year - you know how you tend to think - seen it all before - been there done that - same old tents blah, blah blah.  But we had a great day out together! Here are some of the pics I took!
This is the Bee Keeping and Honey Section of the Horticultural Marquee.
You could knock this cool Bee Keepers Suit up for just a pound if you were really industrious.

The bees hard at work. The Queen bee was marked with a white spot. Further across all the beautiful items made out of beeswax. And the best bit of all - a honey tasting table. I took a brilliant picture of grand daughter enjoying the samples but she banned me from posting that one!

Other little bits of the show.

 We tasted all the culinary samples in the food hall and washed it down with Damson Gin and Toffee Vodka - well in truth, only a thimbleful of each. We collected goody bags of magazines and free seeds from the Garden News Stall. We watched the various performances taking place on the village green and chilled out in the Dingle Gardens. So to everybody who puts so much effort into putting together all these shows - Village Hall or Town Event - I just want to say a great big Thank You! You're cool!

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Fair Exchange

I've been teaching my grand daughter how to slice runner beans and she has been teaching me how to edit photos and create collages, so for the rest of her holiday with us, she's doing the cooking and I'm spending lots of time playing about on the computer. Good what !!

Thursday, 4 August 2011

'Slow Down ...You Move Too Fast ......'

.......' gotta make the morning last' .....D'you remember that old Simon & Garfunkel song from way back? The last two bits of blogs I've posted have been about technology. (This is the last on that subject I promise) When that song was top of the hit parade ('Hit Parade?' Gordon Bennett I feel old)  a 'blackberry' was something you picked off a thorn bush and it made the tips of your fingers go purple. Tumblr was something you dried your clothes in and Flickr was the name of somebody's horse in one of those old Western movies that claimed about 75% of our viewing time. You tube was something you mended when your bike had a puncture. And yet it's such a privilege to be living in an era where technology has moved on like in no other century?  For me, it almost feels like having a foot in each camp. I used to listen in (under the bed clothes) to Radio Luxembourg and Radio Caroline on a transistor radio. I had a Dansette record player and an armful of vinyl LP's and EP's and 45's. You could get them  to play the record of your choice through headphones in a booth in store, before purchasing  and now you can listen to it over and over on WE 7 and such like without having to.
I was fascinated today - the tiniest snail I've ever seen was making his way up an Aquilegia  leaf. He was about half the size of my little finger nail and didn't he move! The wind was blowing quite hard and he hung on like grim death. I had to take this video. My O/H thinks I'm barmy and he could well be right. Technology is fantastic, but we could never emulate what nature does without trying.

What do you think?