Archive for May, 2009

Well I think that going on holiday counts as an “important project” anyway. We took the camper van (and tent for non-adults) to the Lake District. It was unwise to arrive at the site on Sunday, when everyone else had arrived on Saturday. The only pitch left was ominously close to the stream and had […]

No blogging for a few days. Sorry for the interruption. I’ve got an important project (not washing line construction or beekeeping). Back next week.

Beeing there


My concerns for the British bee population have been eased. I was at my local primary school today when a swarm of bees arrived. It was not a big swarm… about as numerous as Norwich City fans at a home game, but with more to look forward to. Talk about attention seeking behaviour. They decided […]

Hot air


The government is urging us to prepare for a heatwave. That is good. We are advised to paint our houses white and plant shrubs for shade. Presumably they will need to be drought-tolerant shrubs. Perhaps palm trees would be better. I will ask Mrs R for authorisation to paint the house white tomorrow. We are […]

Down to earth


The vegetable plot is coming along. Soon I will be the next Tom Good. I do some more digging. I plunge the fork deep into the ground and lean back to turn a substantial clod of rich Norfolk soil. It is very hard to move. I lean harder. The ground is very dry. Nothing moves. […]



In London last night I enjoyed dinner with some of my former workmates. It felt a bit like being at an extended family get-together… a fiftieth birthday or a silver wedding… one of those occasions where you know who everyone is, but you are not sure what you have in common. Then after a few […]

Line out


This morning’s sudden catastrophic collapse of the primary washing line could not have been foreseen. One moment the towels were flapping merrily in the strong north-easterly breeze. The next moment they were lying in an untidy zigzag across the lawn. Mrs R. was on the phone at the time and I thought I had a […]



There is a high-fenced enclosure by the sea. The sun beats down. Security guards watch the perimeter. The inmates are tagged for identification. A sickly, scorched fatty smell lingers in the air. From a distance you can hear the clanking of machines and instruments of torture… and the screams. I call it Guantanamo. A pre-teen […]

“Someone at my school had better get Swine Flu soon…” said one of the children. Funnily enough I too have been contemplating early exposure to the virus. It seems prudent to get your immune system prepared early in a pandemic, whilst it is still a topic of media interest and the medical professionals are not […]




My chainsaw still terrifies me. A bank holiday weekend is the traditional time for self-harm by inexperienced users of power tools. Because the weather was so nice I decided to spend the afternoon in the garden, chopping up a large pile of logs that have been in a waiting-to-be-chopped-up pile in the out of sight […]