So where's the snow?

Muddling through life from Austria to Wales; God, life and a small black dog

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Going back

Way back in the 1980s, Dave and I lived in a tied cottage on the Beaulieu estate in Hampshire. Our first married home and we brought our babies home to it. This is the only picture I could find of the house from the front , and there are none of the entrance from the lane. After seven years, when Dave had a major problem with his arm, we were evicted (although by agreement rather than force) and that day was one of the worst in my life. Even now, when I am bothered about something, I dream of Little Marsh lodge, which is maybe because I’m tapping into that trauma, or it was a wrenching out of a place I loved.

This picture was taken from a helicopter ride I had over the hosue, you can see it under the peddle. The field up and to the left is now a lake.

Over the years, I returned on several occasions to slink down the track past the house to the sea. It seemed the same. Then we heard it had been sold to an actress and after a few alterations, it was completely revamped, even winning prizes.

So, when we were in Hampshire a few weeks ago, Dave, George(our son) and I went to have a look. I embarrassed them by walking down the lane and banging on the door, but although the front door was ajar,and dogs barking, there was no answer, so we walked along the sea front.

This is the entrance from the house side. and below is now, from the other direction, our shed and trees long gone.

Looking at the photos, I see our past has been totally wiped. What was the main house next to the beach has been demolished and what looks like a modern monstrosity being built in it’s place.

Here is where the cattle field had been dug out and turned into a lake.

I know its not good to go back and things don’t stay static, but now, and I’ve never felt this before, it’s over. I never want or need to go back -except. maybe to see what the new house on the beach looks like. I’ve another long overdue closure, but I still want to go back to the house we lived in in Winchester as that has never changed from the outside.

Little Marsh will live on in my mind, my photos, our chat. Maybe I’ve handed it on to our kids too, George can remember it, having been six when we left, our daughter can’t remember it at all. I’m sad that it’s gone for ever, subconsciously I had been hanging on to it. I wonder where I will dream of next time I’m worrying about something?



I just celebrated my 59th birthday. A few decades ago, I would be considered ready for the comfy chair and and a bit of knitting.

Nowadays it’s just another start. I have to work until I’m 66 @:%=#**#=# it! I’m building my career as a writer hope to start some painting, and ride again.

So next year? Be warned! I’m planning a big 60th party in the UK. Then (don’t tell the pension people) I’m going to re-generate, following year I’m going to be 59 again. Good idea???

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Sometimes I get so fed up with myself!!!

As you know, I have a horror of growing older and all it entails and will not have it in my life as I saw it happen with my mother and Grandmother. I will keep my marbles until the end and I will make the 100. Not that I’m worried about dying and meeting Jesus, but it’s the process.

So, I’m now 57. I AM NOT OLD! I’m training to be a part time librarian, writing a new book, teaching part time, and running the gardens and holiday homes. Maybe I do live in Lalaland more than ever, when I’m out dog walking, the mind is like a butterfly and without regular work the mental discipline isn’t there!

But a couple of years ago, I found myself muddling my words, saying a similar word to the one I meant, or completely the wrong one and sometimes being aware and sometimes not when Dave pointed it out (though sometimes he hasn’t heard me properly but we won’t get into that!). Some of this was the Hashimotos antibodies chewing at the brain, so I make sure I take the Selenium, ginko and zinc. Some was the Gluten intolerance and some of it is that since the menopause. I now have so much energy, I’m not clocking when I’m tired -fantastic! I feel like I did when I was in my 30s! Since Swingle has had her sleeping problems sorted and my sleep rhythms are restored the word thing happens only occasionally, whooppee!

Mistakes- I haven’t been able to get the church service sheet right for about two years, I have to get Dave to check it, because if I send it to be corrected, its odds on I’ll print the wrong one out. I know I’m a perfectionist and I find this all hard to take and I might have been a bit like this in the past, but its getting worse!

My short term memory is crap. I forget things much more, like when I had to be reminded that the birds weren’t feeding in the garden because of the neighbours trees being felled, I only remembered Paggy’s being chopped down a couple of years ago not these. Then Dave talking about the little bridge being gone had me completely puzzled, if he had said our bridge, or the big bridge I would have got it, I was thinking of a little one further along the river and he really confused me – whose fault this time? I’ve forgotten important keys, but that’s nothing that new……

Now the greatest stupidity.  I had one of the flat owners ask me to go over and read the electricity meter. I had a damaged key for this flat and was waiting for the cleaner to lend me hers. I decided to do this yesterday as then Dave could have the car on Monday.  So I went over and the key didn’t fit. I had offered to read the other two flats too. I went into all to check the electricity was off in them but I couldn’t find any electricity meters. So they must be in the cellars. It would have been logical to then go down and look. Not me, I rang the cleaner, went to her house and got the key so I could go in the original flat and then collect the post. Then I went to the cellars and the meters weren’t there.  They must be in one of the locked rooms I cannot access. So I went home, only being successful in collecting the post. Just how stupid could you get? If I had looked in the cellars in the first place as had been a dim thought, I could just have gone straight home and got the key and post during the week, Taking an hour and a half rather than the half an hour it could have taken. Talk about muddled stupid thinking, illogical and dumb. I spent the rest of they day feeling a complete prat and just wondering  what is happening to my thought processes and actions.

Is this just getting older or do I have a problem? Anyone else do things like this?




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Doing things I always vowed I’d never do……………


Bombed again

Getting older and doing the parent thing even though the kids aren’t kids anymore, has reminded me of all the things that hacked me off when I was their age. Now I find myself nearly doing the same things to my mortification.  I think their generation is far more verbal about being embarrassed than mine, and they will tell me to my face!

Firstly, I used to go and visit my mother in Somerset and we would go shopping together. My mother was proud of me, and to get his approbation was a hard thing. But that’s another story. I would trundle her around the shops and she would insist on introducing me to every shopkeeper, ‘here is my daughter from Hampshire’. Inside I would be cringing as I saw the uninterested look on their faces, but a little bit happy at her tone of voice. So yes, I found myself doing it when Stef visited and I introduced her to folks. I tried hard to be matter of fact, it was just a normal introduction.  I tried to keep the pride out of my voice. I found myself doing it again when I was telling someone about George and Michelle’s visit. Right or wrong? I want them to know how proud I am but not embarrass them in public- ahhhhhhh maybe I shouldn’t be writing this blog……

Then today I was clearing the spare room, and saw a coat Dave bought last year and has never worn. OH, wonder if George would like this. Then I saw some of the really awful old gits clothes I’ve been given in the past. By people full of love but not realising that one generation doesn’t wear what the other does. I put the coat back in the cupboard.

Any of this familiar to you??

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Masculine readers may want to go to the next post……..

That time of life for a woman,the menopause, I greet with a huge sense of relief.  An absence of hormonal highs and lows, monthly pains and inconvenience, a quieter place altogether. Ok so I may get a bit flushed now and then……. My mother rarely spoke of hers, except when she was hot while my Grandmother milked it for everything it was worth!

This is combined with a life without stress, no Burg, and the thyroid and iron levels all being normal at last. I’m engulfed in the deepest peace I’ve ever reached, and for that I give God the glory for moving me into a new place. It’s tangible.  Its been a battle for over five years and there still will be skirmishes, but its a new place for body, soul and spirit. 

It was really spelled out for me this holidays, where after the first adapting to having Dave home, I could see just how chilled I am.  I’m just so not bothered about anything!  I could even stop blogging and not be bothered! Not rushing in the mornings when there was no need, not working out a daily list to do, being detached from his concerns, he can sort them, I don’t need to control anymore.  Ok it has the downside that when we must be organised, I’ve gone too far the other way and leave things too late but its ok.

The only thing I would now change is work/career for us both. God gave me this job and I will stay till he says go, I enjoy the quiet and the people there when they’re at home.  I’ve been too much on my own these past fews months and can see that. Yet I would move on to our dream of buying the flat next door, being at home all the time to welcome guests and care for them.  We have the vision of being able to give people free holidays as an escape, retreat and blessing.  God has to deal with the  financial part of this!  When we had guests lately, Dave and I suddenly began working as a real team – he did driving, I did catering and he can stay up later than me, so I could sleep and he could chat. It really worked, so God is preparing us.  It will come, its only a matter of time -woohooooooo!


Poor old Paggy!

Action in Madling

When I got back from Bible Group last night, I noticed Paggy  hadn’t put his blinds down or taken the post in, but I’d seen the Red Cross lady leaving earlier that day, so wasn’t worried but thought I’d go and see the old codger in the morning and help put the tarpaulin back on his car which had partially blown off.

No answer to the door or yelling.  I checked with his support agencies ie Red Cross (Amateurs!) and Hilfswerk but they knew nothing nor did the Hospital.  I was now entering panic mode, none of the neighbours were at home.   So I got the ladder, which had been used in his previous emergencies to peer into his first floor bedroom.  Then I wussed out and called our English neighbour (Hi Dave) who went up for me. He could see Paggy lying on the bed, but not moving.  I began to think Paggy might be dead.    So like the previous two times, I called the Fuzz.  They got him to answer, but he couldn’t move.  So this time they had to get a hammer to break the window when the ambulance arrived.  Linda , who was now home  and I cleared the glass and left the professionals to it.

Of course I remained about, and one of the paramedics told me, Paggy was in a Diabetic coma – with his sugar at about 30 when the normal is 100.  He was talking by the time they brought him out, so I guess they filled him with sugar!  I took some photos then wondered if this was a bit ghoulish but they’re only the cars!

According to my calculations, he must have been taken ill in the late morning the previous day.  Too early for major beer and he’s been drinking less. He’s moaned for ages about the Meals on Wheels he’s been having, so has he been eating properly? Was the coma a side effect of being out of things for maybe 24 hours, maybe underlying was another stroke? Poor old bugger!

Tomorrow I’ll be visiting him and giving him a piece of my mind about not giving anyone a key – if they let him home, after all he’s been receiving monitoring.  He’s convinced everyone steals from him and trusts no one. I bet once he gets the bill for repairing the window he will  do something!  Its the third time I’ve rescued the old git because I’ve noticed something not usual. I just hope one day someone looks out for me.  Now maybe you’ll understand why getting old freaks me out!!!!!!!