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Sunday, 26 September 2010

Lincolnshire Skies

This morning I thought I would take a peak at the coast, as the weather has been really grim and stormy. The sea was turbulent and dark, and the sky? Well, I think its brooding. I am a rubbish photographer, but these images took themselves! Even the old Salt Mines look desolate under the lowering clouds. Obviously the Salt Mine visitors are all cold and miserable. The Mines themselves are now closed to vehicles, which adds to the general air of depression and hard-done-to-ness. Still another 5 weeks of open season, so can only hope for a mild and balmy October. Please.

The Big Boy remains incommunicado in bonnie Scotland. A few brief notes through Facebook are all his doting mother has received. Today it is my intention to call him... He seems very happy, settled and upbeat, though I have no details of his experiences whatsoever!

The youngest is counting down the final 7 days before his own departure. No more bar work now, and only 5 more days at the Holiday Park Reception checking Touring Caravans in and out. He has never complained about all the hours he has worked this summer, and has a wallet full of buttons for beer as a result of his endeavours. If his University experience proves to be only half as satisfactory as he is anticipating he will still have a unforgettable time! Almost all his friends have departed to their various seats of learning now, and all are texting madly to say how wonderful it is. Beer talk so far I fear!

The farmer is 'ploughed up' (a technical term I believe), and awaiting access to more of his land when a tenant departs in November. He will then return to the yoke (or tractor) and whizz around another 30 acres - unless the rain doesn't stop, in which case he will be ploughing off the back of a boat!!!

A builder has been to price up repairs to the exterior of the house.... which will need scaffolding all round whilst new guttering is fixed, and the chimney stacks are repaired. I know its going to be painful. More buttons please.

The youngest had a contratemps with an established hawthorne hedge beside a country lane last week, the hedge came out of the ordeal in much better condition than the Skoda he was driving at the time. Still awaiting the return of the car from the body shop. As I result I have been driving the Salt Mines landrover for a week. Horrible instrument of torture. Be thankful to return to the seat of my old Ford. And I have now heard every one of the jokes regarding the pointlessness of sending a Skoda in for repairs.

My burned and scalded foot is now improving rapidly, and I can get most footwear on with care and dressings. This is a relief as for the past two days it has proved to be necessary to wear wellies. All the time. COME ON WEATHER - IMPROVE.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

feisty arachnid

I am sorry to say that the fate of the HUGE spider was the vacuum cleaner. It deserved better, but the clatter and rattle as he stomped up the kitchen wall, then squatted there threatening me was too much to tolerate. I couldn't get the saddle and bridle on him, so the vacuum hose was waved in his vicinity, and he succumbed. Thankfully. The other photo shows my sister performing a very classy piece of furniture moving at the salt mines! It raised a few eyebrows, and smattering of chuckles, and was much, much easier than man-handling the mattress from one end of the Mines to the other. A departing guest commented that her accommodation double bed was too uncomfortable to sleep on, so we thought it was probably time for a change. Mission accomplished.

And now for home news. Ploughing continues apace despite inclement weather. New bedroom carpet fitted in big boy's bedroom. Slight oversight when I ordered luscious, plump and comfortable underlay. It wouldn't fit under the bedroom door. Door is about 200 years old. As are the screws, and hinges. Removing the door was HUGE task, and regrettably the lower hinge was broken in the process. Obviously this means that the door is still propped against the bedroom wall, waiting hopefully for a miracle. Could be some time I fear, though by the end of the week I might phone a joiner! Had a new bathroom carpet too, the fitting of which was a piece of cake by comparison.

All friends of youngest chick packing their bags and baggage for their first forays into University life, they are so excited and its such a pleasure to be part of it. First one is off his blocks and on his way this Sunday. We have about three weeks to go. Bags are standing open on bedroom floor, and clothing etc is beginning to creep out of cupboards into the capacious interiors of the luggage. Inside I am crying.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

A level news

The baby boy achieved two A grades and a C grade. The C grade was almost a B, just one mark off. He would receive a £1000 bursary from University with AAB, therefore the school advised that the paper should be re-marked. There is a small charge for this, and the risk is that some more marks are deducted. Nevertheless, he paid the £30 and the paper was duly submitted for reassessment. Today the school telephoned. They said they had never had such a large differential in marks - he has received another 5 marks for his Biology paper, taking him from a C grade well into B territory! There is also no charge for the service as the error was on the part of the exam marker. He is ABSOLUTELY DELIGHTED! And the University confirm that he will now receive the Bursary. Hooray. Every little helps!! He is feeling on top of the world as an AAB student rather than an AAC student. Good for him!

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

no photos, just news!

Big boy has gone, disappeared into darkest reaches of Scotland to get wet and learn about fish. Missing him. Hoping we might glimpse him during Scottish half term in October. Otherwise, the farmer and I are taking a weekend break in the Lowlands and embarrassing him by calling in..... He seems to be settling into his accommodation well, and learning the art of serious drinking from Scots and Irish co-habitees. Its good to turn to professionals at a time like this!!!

Youngest is now busting a gut to be off to his own Ivory Tower, in his case Leicester University, to read History. We have been shopping for some slightly less raggedy clothes and shoes in preparation for his departure, though he had no information about duvet, pillow and linen requirements. Therefore these will have to come from his budget, not mine. My University expenses account is now officially closed!! He is working three extra weeks at the day job for additional funds, and also his bar job in the evenings stretches until his departure. He has proved to be extremely hardworking and determined during this summer break and will leave the nest with plenty of beer money in his pockets. This is a good thing, as there is no beer money to be had from my University fund account (the same one that has now closed...)

With no pups left the kitchen has returned to its usual state of only slight disarray. In presence of pups it turned into a whirlwind of chewed paper, nipped toes & ankles and nibbled shoes and slippers. Routine also re-established for pup Mum and Auntie, and I get an extra 30 minutes in bed. Yippee!

September at Salt Mines peaceful and calm with the madness that is the children's school holidays behind us. Holiday units full until well into October, but it seems that guests are all more sensible, and much less demanding. Some time now available to make plans for my own empty nest activities, and marking the special birthday that I shall celebrate in October. Its a sobering thought to have reached my half-century with so much still to do, but have every intention of rectifying that in the coming few years! I shall be that dangerous old lady with a determined gleam in her eye driving erratically all over the region, talking to strangers in the street, and happily drawing attention to rude and snooty service industry employees. These are some of the things that I shall look forward to as old age creeps up!

Yellow horse fat and happy, much like his pilot, though there is the promise of more exercise for both of us now that the silly season is drawing to a close. He has had a couple of outings with a 10 year old pilot in the saddle, and he has been very kind to her. So much so that she is now looking for her own trusty steed! Poor parents. Skipper must take the blame for this.