Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Comedy Sheep

At the Suffolk show this week, we saw some sheep, and then more sheep, and then some more! I always thought sheep were cute, benign looking creatures but some of these look plain menacing! Some of them resemble cows, some dogs, some monsters and some childrens' toys! But all, I think you can agree are the oddest looking creatures imaginable!


I've been planning on starting the 'get fit and lose weight for the summer holiday diet' next week but today I had a BIG shock! I never weigh myself (too depressing) and try really hard not to be obsessed by my size and to live life to the full anyway. However, I weighed myself a few months ago as Andy had the scales out when he was training to climb Mont Ventoux. I was pleasantly surprised, I didn't weigh as much as I have done in the past! Today, I weighed myself again and I was exactly the same, and then to my horror realised that the scales were stuck at that weight and couldn't go above it! After a bit of jiggery pokery I fixed the scales and realised to my horror that I weigh much much more than I could ever have imagined. So, the diet has started NOW!

I have decided to log my eating and exercise over the next few weeks on my 'luceproduction' blog. It's boring, but it might help me keep on the straight and narrow until my holiday. I need to. My friend Wendy with the swimming pool in her garden has been threatening a pool party soon! (OMG!)

Up the garden path.

Well the day finally dawned yesterday when I could go and see the Quirky house. Would I like it? Would I love it? I forced the girls to come with me despite their protestations and wanting to remain in their night clothes in front of the TV all day...."Come on", I said "This might be the one". "I'll only want it if it's got a pink bedroom for me" said Alice.

Well, we turned up, the lady owner showed us round and we discussed the area. She's managed to bring two children up in the area, one of which is now at much for the badlands of Ipswich! The house, itself was wonderful, I loved it, the girls LOVED it.....and later on when I took Andy (and Lettuce, who is visiting), HE LOVED IT! Not only that, he WANTS it and wants to make an offer.....

It really ticks all our boxes..... Grand hall, with flagstone hall, enormous cellar with two rooms in for either a gym/cinema/table tennis playing area, two enormous, high ceilinged, full of character reception rooms with French windows off one of the rooms to a lovely private walled courtyard side garden full of wisteria and old roses, a 'country' style kitchen with French windows off to the garden and another set of French windows onto the beautiful hardwood conservatory which leads to the 'chapel' which has been wonderfully converted to utility room, power shower room and extra room which they use as a study. (Sigh). Upstairs, four capacious bedrooms....the master bedroom has a walk in wardrobe and ensuite. All the floors are original wide boards! And the garden is superb!

Got a cynical text from Nicola saying "and what about all the syringes in the front garden!" Well, quite frankly she's talking from a comfortable, middle class enclave that she's got used to where she is.....surrounded by 'nice' people like her. Both Lettuce, Andy and I agree that the area isn't's not 'pleasant valley', it does have a bit of 'edge' but that's what we like.

More to the point, it feels like an artist's home.....that's me! me! me I tell you.....if I get the house do you think the rest will follow?

(Oh yes, there was a pink bedroom.....two in fact!)

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Quirky House est arrivee

Well, here it is! The house I've been waiting for. And I'm not in the least bit disappointed by the details. However, here's the thing. And it's a bit of big 'thing'. This house is not in the most desirable part of Ipswich! It's right on the edge of the good bit of town, but it's on the edge.... On the same road as the YMCA and the halfway houses, the big houses that have been turned into lodgings and stuff, but there are plenty of residential houses too....but which way is it going to go, UP or DOWN? And, is it safe for my daughters? Safer than where we lived in London, or at least AS SAFE.

Had a long discussion with Andy about it tonight....we looked at the property that was available at the same price in the 'desirable' bit of town but you can't get half the house for this price....this house has enough scope for a gym, a cinema and a studio! The garden is enormous, and secluded. It doesn't need any work, it's set well back from the road....but..... Next week, I will take my camera along the road and take some pictures and post them on my blog...

Your decision as to where I lay my hat is important to me!

(Half of me thinks it's the bohemian end of town, where the artists/teachers/Quirky people live, and that appeals to me). So, we will go and see it (on Tuesday earliest) and make up our minds then....

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

PTB PTB no really, PTB

Just need to write this;


Nothing specific has happened and I'm grateful for that. But I just can't galvanise myself
into doing ANYTHING at all unless I'm FORCED.

Perhaps I should take a blogactical.....

I need to

clean the house, I mean CLEAN the house,
write a letter to the Tax man to claim some back
go to the bottle bank (they collect everything else apart from bottles)
take some exercise (don't seem to be able to find the energy)
stop eating (so far to day: porridge, made with water, a banana, a pomegranate, an apple, a large piece of cheddar, two carrots, the rest of the moroccan houmous, three squares of green and blacks 70% chocolate, a little bit of vegetarian moussaka left over in the fridge from friday, sigh...I'm stuffed)
do more housework
finish my book for the book club
force myself to go to tennis tonight before I atrophy completely
tidy up!
clean out the car
buy various birthday cards and prezzies


Went to see one today .....looked nice, grade II listed Georgian and all that, but no good, no good at all.... (still waiting for the Quirky chapel thing to come on)

I can't seem to get away from this darned computer these days....every five minutes checking Rightmove, then Primelocation, then another couple of agents who consider themselves too
posh to advertise on these websites, then the blogs, then my comments....and so it goes on...

Maybe I should disappear for a few days...after all I gave up booze I can give up blogging.... just so I can get a few things done at least! Maybe...


We had a lovely weekend in London with Lettuce, meeting Molly and Trac (and her family), and later eating out at a great Malaysian restaurant. On the Sunday afternoon we had been invited to Alice's best friend H's 'first holy communion' and to the 'after party'. We were looking forward to looking at all the little girls in their meringue style dresses and trying to explain to our two girls the business of 'church', 'mass' and 'communion' - sadly not up to the task at all! But unfortunately, we arrived just a few minutes late and were unable to gain ingress to the church, it being PACKED TO THE RAFTERS. It was peeing down outside so we just turned round and went back to Lettuce's for a bit longer (hooray). But we went along to the party when they were home which was very nice. By coincidence, H's parents, our good friends Mick (he of the marathon) and Cas, have a good friend made through their childrens' school who I went to school with and haven't seen since our school days. I've seen her a few times at Cas's in the past year or so and we've always got on. She's so funny. She's older than me, and being VERY catholic has just had her fourth (accidental) baby at the age of 43! She told a very funny story about how she was desperate to see the Da Vinci code and knew with a little baby she'd never get to see it unless she went to the special showing of it at the Greenwich Art House Cinema which offer a 'Big Scream' sponsored by the NCT. You have to turn up with a breast feeding baby (not breasfeeding as you enter!) and no more than two adults. She told such a funny story about how she saw a woman in the cinema with formula and thought about dobbing her in! And how, all these very, obviously, first time parents, but also had been successful professional people going about baby care with such a show off efficiency - men walking about with babies in sheeepskin papooses and making a great show of changing their baby's nappies on the stage in front of film as it was showing!


Last night, for the first time in her life (eight years) Alice wet the bed. Unfortunately, it was our bed that she soaked, plus her mother who was lying very close to her. When I woke up, I thought at first it was me that had wet myself! Alice has this habit of trotting in in the middle of the night and climbing in between us. We have such a large bed we don't notice it anymore and she more of less does it in her sleep. I hope this wetting was a one off! She must have been so tired if it didn't wake her up! Andy didn't want to get up and remake the bed so Alice and I went and slept in her single bed (my shoulder hurts this morning) while he slept on, on his side of the bed! I had started to remove the sheet so it was half off the bed...... (I know, ewwwww). But Andy needs his sleep, he gets up so early.... But ALL the sheets are now in the machine on a hot wash and the mattress protector is waiting it's turn. (you'll be glad to hear)


Having my hair cut today! And taking the car to the garage later as a light came on the dashboard on the way back from London the other day! Oh, I know how to live, me!

The estate agent has told me about an interesting house coming on the market this week....large, quirky, early Victorian.....has a chapel in the back garden! They are going to let me know the minute it comes on...I'm waiting with baited breath.

Monday, May 22, 2006


While searching our photos for suitable pics of Lettie I came across this.....

It's not of Andy dancing (for a change). But the sentiments are from us all...... we love you!

Hope you are not too bogged down with plagiarism today and that you have a lovely evening with LG and M later. PS: I will only keep this vid up for a day as it has someone else in it, who is a pillar of the community and may not approve! - Glitter Graphics


Friday, May 19, 2006

MY 20% and my 100%

This is Embeth Davidtz, star of JuneBug which I saw last night. She's GGGGGGGGGGorgeous.

This is Alessandro Nivola, also the star of Junebug. He's GGGGGGGGorgeous too.

Thursday, May 18, 2006


Yep, at eight o'clock this morning I took him down to the bus station. Perversely, I was quite sorry to see him go in a way.

Last night in a great show he presented the girls with a 50 euro note EACH!!! Which I must concede was nice of him.

I'm terrified of catching the lurgies that everyone seems to be getting around me and really really don't want to be ill for Lettuce's birthday meal and of course a special meeting with my star pupil, Trac. I will show her the art of drinking an excellent gin and (full sugar) TONIC, along with the guzzling of crisps which, of course I NEVER eat!

Of course I said that when Graham had gone I would crack open one of the three bottles of cava that I have a-chilling in my fridge. But I think I might wait until tomorrow night when my sister and her hubby come round for a meal. I'm also going out tonight anyway, to the cinema with Nicola to see Junebug.

Managed to play tennis this morning. This is the technical bit, so look away now.....

We learned the art of the drop shot, which I knew about and try to do on occasion but wasn't aware that there was a particular 'shot' as such. But I think I rather like the dropshot, as I do the back hand slice which I perfected in my lesson with my coach Martin. (you won't get a picture of him, sadly but you will get the Ipswich Sports Club website if you are interested).

Nicola came round for lunch today after tennis. I have to say she's coming round to my way of thinking now and quite able to say mean things about quite a number of her friends! I'm certainly learning all the Ipswich gossip. But in small towns everyone seems to know absolutely everyone, so one has to be a bit careful about mentioning names to one party in case they are 'persona non grata'. If you know what I mean. Small towns eh? Who'd have 'em!

After making an initial low offer on that house I put on my blog last week, the estate agent tried to get us to increase our offer. On Saturday we went back to see it but decided not to increase our offer as we just couldn't afford it. The agent was a bit huffy when I told him. (same one as put the phone down on me a while back when we made an offer on a house and then changed our minds). Well, anyway, I had a feeling that our low offer hadn't even been put forward to the vendors because this estate agent wanted to get much more for his client. But he is legally bound to put the offer forward and we should receive something in writing. But nothing has come in the post. But one of Nicola's friends is friends with the vendor and she is going to ask them if they 've received an offer on their house yet! I will find out tomorrow if they have heard of the offer we made or not! Bloody estate agents! Who'd have 'em!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Ho Hum!

Feeling a bit boring this week. No new houses have come on the market for me to look at. You'd think at this time of year people would be selling their houses. There is plenty on the market but it's either too expensive or not in the right area, or too small.

Graham leaves tomorrow (Hallelujah). Sometimes I feel sorry for him because of his loneliness and then he opens his mouth and ruins it all. Today he said to me 'what do I owe you?' (MY GOD HE'S THE CANNIEST MOST MANIPULATIVE PERSON EVER IN THE WORLD). As if I would charge anyone for living in my house for three weeks. BUT I WOULD HAVE APPRECIATED A CONTRIBUTION FOR CHRISSAKES! Fancy saying that, I can't get over it. He knew full well there was no way I was going to present him with a bill. But what person, ever in the history of the world stays at a person's house for three weeks and only once gave me a fiver to get him some beer (which incidentally he drinks copiously every day) - so a fiver didn't even cover two days! He did buy me lunch twice which was nice. But it would have been nice if he'd offered to take us all out for lunch or something. I sound mean don't I? I'm really not, but it's just the combination of everything coupled with his extreme mean spiritedness that really gets to me. On the one occasion I asked him to bring some beer back from town one day, he said he wouldn't be able to carry it! 'Yes, you would' I said. 'Buy it just as you are coming home and it'll be OK and it doesn't weigh much'. Thinking that he would have gone to M&S in town he came home with some co-op lager which was 2% alcohol and cost, (he told me) only 1.72p. Well at least he's tight fisted with himself as well as others. And, no he isn't poor. He's told me how much he made in interest alone on his capital last year (and it was quite a lot).

Well, anyway, he's going. And I can't help still feeling sorry for him. (even though he's not taken one photograph of his grandchildren, but plenty of our (very large) garden to show off to his cronies in Spain).

Alice has been ill this week so I haven't been out and about as much as I usually do which feels odd. I hate being housebound. Hopefully she'll be back at school tomorrow so I can go to tennis.

Oh yes, one more thing. I have three bottles of pink cava in the fridge for Friday night. I have enjoyed this period of non-alcohol. The longest time I've been off alcohol since being pregnant and breast feeding. I might just have this weekend with alcohol and then go back on the wagon with LeChat until the end of the month. If I hadn't done it with anyone I wouldn't have managed it.

But I have another plan. Would anyone out there in blogland like to do a 'get rid of few pounds two week healthy eating plan' with me? This is what I propose:

Two weeks of salads and fruit only. Breakfast can be porridge or oat cakes or something else healthy and low fat. The salads can include protein such as tuna/chicken/prawns and dressing. I can't do low fat dressing (I'm fussy) But no bread, or wheat products, crisps, biscuits or chocolate or anything like that. I intend to start Monday. I have just bought a lovely pair of black linen trousers which are wee bit too tight and I would like to get in to them. Why did I buy them? Well they were a good make but greatly reduced - you can't let a bargain like that pass you buy even if you can't fit into them. I'm afraid I have a few clothes in my wardrobe that I've bought thinking I'll get into them one day....sadly that has never happened. But I feel if I can give up the drink like I have, surely I can do two weeks of healthy eating and see where it takes me. Anyone up for it?

Monday, May 15, 2006


I went to the allotment today, well not so much an allotment more of an overgrown weedbed. While I was digging away, a woman approached me and asked if I'd like some strawberry plants, 'yes please' I said, 'I'll have anything'. She was giving up her allotment due to pressures of work but didn't want the neighbouring allotment holders to have her stuff as they'd been horrid to her about her plot getting overgrown. So, she came over with boxes of wonderful strawberry plants, a large artichoke plant, and about ten raspberry plants. Result? Instant allotment!


I was thinking today about my eating habits. A good friend of mine said my habits were so fussy I was like an old man! (not Graham I hope!). But I don't mind. Here is a list of food that I have become majorly fussy about;

- marmalade - at the moment I am only eating Bonne Maman Orange Ameres
- coffee - only ever in the morning unless I am in a Starbucks type place.
- bread - never white sliced. Breakfast toast has to be high quality wholemeal with bits of stuff
in such as sunflower seeds.
- biscuits - never ever the cheap processed ones any more. In fact I rarely eat biscuits at all
these days. Unless I am in France and then I eat the Petit Ecolier with my afternoon tea.
- lager - never at home, sometimes in the pub
- crisps - I nearly never buy crisps now, unless we are going on a long car journey and then we get them from the garage. However, if you put a bowl of crisps in front of me, I will eat them (all).
- chocolate - if I ever buy a chocolate bar it will be a Snickers. But this is rare. I buy a bar of Green and Blacks 70% cocoa ever week to nibble on at home.
- fizzy drinks never tempt me these days - maybe an 'ice cold coke on the back of my throat' on a very hot day.

Funny how age makes you a fussy old thing.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Wanna hear something really stupid?

We have a bird feeder in the garden that holds peanuts and seeds. Today I noticed that it needed refilling but couldn't find the bags of feed that I had left on the spare fridge in the garage some time ago. I asked Andy if he'd seen them. 'Whoops,' he said 'I ate them, I didn't realise it was bird food'. I'm surprised he's still alive! Bloomin bird brain!!!!!


Friday, May 12, 2006

Another day in paradise!

I've got my Birkenstocks on so it must be summer! Lettuce made this bag for me, isn't she clever?

My Birkenstocks and I had an amazing cup of coffee in the sun today!

Thursday, May 11, 2006


I've had a lovely day today.

Nearly as good as one of Cream's days in fact!

At 9.15 I played a tennis match which was part of a league I am playing in. We (Wendy and I) lost, but we played well and the weather was glorious. After the match we played another two hours of tennis (women's Thursday group), boy was it hot. But I played well and my game is finally improving. (this is the boring bit here that only Bangla Jess will be interested serve is coming on, still no power but the throw up is right and the arm 'smile' works well. My forehand is also quite good now when I remember to get my racquet back) - OK you can all wake up again, I've finished talking tennis.

After tennis we all had cold drinks in the sun, followed by a trip to the garden centre with Nicola. (I bought strawberry plants - three, two, one, you're back in the room).

I then went home feeling guilty about abandoning Graham. He immediately suggested lunch at the local pub and even offered to pay!! So we went down the road through the beautiful country roads lined with cow parsley and May blossom, to the pub. I had a sparkling mineral water and a baguette with prawns in a 'marie rose' sauce (that's cocktail sauce then) and salad.

I then left Graham there and collected girls from school. We went back to pick Graham up and went back home (through the gorgeous country lanes......blah blah). A half hour's sit in a deckchair under a tree with a book and then I took Holly to her hour long tennis lesson. While she was there, I went to Nicola's house for a cup of tea, a chat and a wander round her lovely garden.

Then home at 6.15....supper on the patio - fresh emmenthal and mushroom ravioli with fresh pesto, rocket and parmesan salad, followed by melon and stilton.

And now I'm sitting in front of ER! (E4 +1). A perfect end to a perfect day!

Another Test Card!

1.Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are getting weak?
2. Why do banks charge a fee on "insufficient funds" when they know there is not enough?
3. Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?
4. Why doesn't glue stick to the bottle?
5. Why do they use sterilized needles for death by lethal injection?
6. Why doesn't Tarzan have a beard?
7. Why do Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?
8. Whose idea was it to put an "S" in the word "lisp"?
9. If people evolved from apes, why are there still apes?
10. Why is it that no matter what colour bubble bath you use the bubbles are always white?
11. Is there ever a day that Persian rugs are not on sale?
12. Why do people constantly return to the refrigerator with hopes that something new to eat will have materialized?
13. Why do people keep running over a string a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner, then reach down, pick it up, examine it, then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance?
14. Why is it that no plastic bag will open from the end on your first try?
15. How do those dead bugs get into those enclosed light fixtures?
16. When we are in the supermarket and someone rams our ankle with a shopping cart then apologizes for doing so, why do we say, "It's all right?"Well,it isn't all right, so why don't we say, "That hurt, you stupid idiot?"
17. Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that's falling off the table you always manage to knock something else over?
18. In winter why do we try to keep the house as warm as it was in summer whenwe complained about the heat?
19. How come you never hear father-in-law jokes?

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Love a duck (with orange sauce)

Well this is my decorative test card for today! I seem to have been busy either, digging allotments, playing tennis and ferrying FIL's and children. Meanwhile, here's the test card for today. I woke up this morning to find a duck i my garden quacking furiously, I think he was lost. Can you see the little pet graves there? Yep, that's my back yard! The below picture is my back yard at dusk! It's lovely here, especially when the sun shines.

I'm off again this morning to play a league match (tennis) and then the usual 'women's improvers' class from 10 to 12, followed by cold drinks in the club 'lounge'. So catch you all later.....

Ah, I love summer.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


After last's night critical cake incident which was preceded by a critical bread incident and then a bit later a critical talking through the taped Dr Who incident, Graham has spent the night thinking about how he can't live with our sarcasm, and he's decided to leave.

He came storming out of his bedroom this morning and said 'to be honest I can't stand Andrew's sarcasm anymore'. To which I decided not to placate the man and said 'well, he's tired at the end of the day and he was annoyed about the bread, cake and the talking through Dr Who!' Graham said 'well, if he's going to be so petty, I'm going to find somewhere else to stay'. And with that he stomped off. Do you think he'll go? Should I try and calm him down? What say you all?

Sunday, May 07, 2006


Right, I've tried to be positive about FIL for over a week but I'm afraid I now have to vent my spleen.

Today, I had to tell him I found what he was saying offensive and could he please refrain. Not sure if he took my point.

First of all this morning he went on about the fact he didn't get his winter heating allowance in Spain because he retired before 1997. But he went on to say that those with one house in UK and one in Spain still got their allowance. He then went on to say that if he'd been gay or disabled he would have got his money. I told him to stop being so 'daily mail' and it was patently untrue and he knew it. So I then got a diatribe about people having 13 kids and him having to pay for it. And so it went on. As you can imagine.

We popped into town briefly to get Alice some new school dresses from M&S. Andy's Dad waited outside with his pipe. M&S is opposite Primark and this is what he said when we came out; (This is offensive so be warned)

Him: "I must say Primark in Ipswich is much better than the one in Woolwich. In Woolwich the clothes were all over the floor it was a complete mess. It's because of the 'nignogs' in Woolwich making the mess"

I told him how offensive I found this (him) but it just washed over him. He's a fascist! I can't stand the man.

Over lunch Andy and I played the game of trying to get him to actually listen to something someone was saying. It fell flat.

Me: Graham did you know that Andy has run the London Marathon three times and that he ran the first ever marathon?

Graham: The first marathon was organised by Chris Brasher you know. I used to work with .********'s brother (an athlete who's name I don't know) and ....blah blah blah.

Now how is any of that actually related to Andy running the marathon?


It's enough to turn you to drink! But I'm not! I did have a sip of the bottle Andy opened at lunch, but only to just taste it. (just a sip honest)

I have another two bloody weeks of this man.

I watched 'Coast' today and the guy was in Wales and he said the word 'hiraeth' again. That's three times in one week! Honestly, it's like buses, you wait ages and then three come all at once!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

All about the Girl!

My daughter Holly, who is eleven (going on 18) has a boyfriend. They all seem to do that up here (at this age). If you have a boyfriend you don't speak to him, spend time with him or anything. As far as I can see you just get presents bought for you! How cool is that! So far Holly has received a GIANT Easter Egg and just recently a necklace ("it's white gold mum and cost more than £30!"). The boy's a fool! She came home last week with a six pack of chocolate bars from the boy! Chocolate and gold! I just hope it's all innocent (I think it is). Her boyfriend is called Byron, and is black with an afro hairstyle to rival the cast of Shaft (put together). Do you think Byron might be 'mad, bad and dangerous to know' like his namesake?

When I got up this morning (the first one to emerge) I turned on the laptop and then made myself some coffee. The laptop automatically signed in to Holly's MSN and when I returned there were about 20 conversations trying to speak to the girl! I had to politely tell them all that Holly was still in bed and this was her mum! Holly is going to be so embarrassed later when she finds out! One of them was Byron! I couldn't understand any of what he was trying to say to Holly because of all those fancy emoticons they use these days (MAN, do I sound old).

Lettuce and I MSN each other daily (sometimes, all daily) but she is a MAC user and can't get all the fancy emoticons. Wish she did though because we have great (and infantile) fun with the small collection we have - such as the 'angry' emoticon and the 'nerdy' emoticon. Hee hee. Oh, how we laugh......

As I have already said in earlier posts. Holly and Alice swim with Ipswich Swim School which does SERIOUS SERIOUS swimming. (as opposed to jokey swimming). Holly has just been 'promoted' to Olympic 'C' team and so now has to swim twice a week, the second time is a Friday night (very sad face). Last night was the first time she'd swum on a Friday and it was at a new venue. The venue was at 'Ipswich High School'. God, what a place! The school was set in parkland and is a stately home.
And the pool was brand new and clean and bright and the complete opposite of where she swims on a Wednesday which is old, Victorian and seriously manky.


I've made a new friend at swimming. She's a policewoman. Her husband is in the CID (do you think he knows Meg's Boyd?) She was telling me yesterday that every so often he has to be on kidnap alert all weekend. (kidnap alert?) He gets a call at any time of the night (or day), drinks a red bull, puts his kojak light on his special car which has all manner of gadgets and gizmos and whizzes down the A12 to the crime ridden, kidnap centre of the universe called London. "Kidnap?" I said. "Really, fancy being on kidnap alert. Does is happen often?" "Yes," she said "usually drug related kidnappings". Blimus. I've led a sheltered life..... thank goodness.


Well, that's enough Ramblings for one morning. Have fun in the sun.


Friday, May 05, 2006


We went to see this house last night.

The garden was WONDERFUL! Completely walled and the owners were obviously plants people. The woman of the house was involved in the arts somehow and the walls were covered in wonderful paintings (even an original Frink). I made the classic mistake of going round the house saying to Andy, "ooh, I just love that picture, ooh look at this one, OMG this painting is wonderful, ooh look they've got raspberry canes, I like this geranium. "

Andy, ever the practical one thinks it needs work......and it's at the VERY TOP of our budget so we could move in, be poor and not make any changes if we are prepared to live in it as it is. It had a lovely feel, I could live there because of the wonderful architectural features.....however the kitchen wasn't enormous....the next door house had added a glass conservatory....we wouldn't be able to affford that at the price it is....decisions, decisions.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006


Envy is not a good thing. I met a woman at the tennis club today. We got talking about my problem. No, not that one. The lack of owning my own home! (how many problems did you think of?). She informed me that her property was for sale privately because she objected to paying 12 grand to the estate agent for doing nothing (as they say in the US - you do the math!). She also told me that she had had an offer accepted on a house. I inquired where this house was, she told me. Knowing the housing market as I do (like the back of my hand) I realised there was only one house on that road that was for sale and it was one of the very few in Ipswich that are worth over £1 million. As I said, envy isn't a good thing. I know, I KNOW! Blah blah blah, she could have lots of other problems, blah blah blah, it's not the house it's the people in it, blah blah blah. BLOODY HELL, I WANT MY OWN HOUSE SO I CAN DECORATE THE ROOMS AND GARDEN THE GARDEN.

Yesterday evening at tennis I was pissed off because a) I arrived late and there were millions and millions of people there (because of the warm weather) and I couldn't get on a court for ages so stood around listening to the middle aged men paying lots of attention to the only two, young attractive women who come to club night Not only are they attractive but they are successful too - one is professional golfer and the other is a vet.
b) I played badly
c) As I was walking off at the end of the evening we saw this professional golfer sitting in the bar with a middle aged man (Mike) and Nic said to me 'Is Mike her Dad?" and I said "No, I just think he fancies her" and Nic said (which made me feel like a bad, bad person) "Don't be sleazy".

Sometimes I wonder where I fit in to this life in Ipswich. Am I the only person who ever feels like this?


Oh, just so I don't sound too downbeat, three good/funny things happened:

- I heard that my brother's Austrian girlfriend is pregnant with her first child! She's had ovarian cancer so this is very good news! The baby is due in September.

- I discovered by accident who this 'andrew' is that I played tennis with last week! As I was driving my children to Olympic swimming tonight there was a car coming towards me at the lights. The car had 'Suffolk Radio' emblazoned all over it, I figured it was a Suffolk Radio car. Driving it was our roving reporter 'andrew'. Hahahahhahhahhaa. Not exactly the media superstar I had imagined!

- Our local cinema is showing the original "Italian Job"! I'm going to take the kids. "I only said blow the bloody doors off"


"Do you know who Jeff Beck is? Do you KNOW who Jeff Beck is?"
"Yes, of course I know who he is, he recorded 'Hi, Ho Silver Lining', I DO know my music you know"
"Not just 'Hi, Ho Silver Lining! He's only one of the best guitarists ever, you know"
"Really? I didn't know that, oh. " ************************************************************************

I'm afraid that when I was 23 I thought Jeff Beck was only famous for one thing and that thing was that song that we all high kicked to at school dances. A one hit wonder. Lucky I thought that then because impressionable person that I am, I might have made a right tit of myself on the day I met Jeff Beck.

Jeff Beck's house was in the Sussex countryside. More than a house, a mansion, ancient and rotting. Full of dogs, guitars, rugs, flagstones and dirt. The abiding memory of his house is one of filth, filth and guitars. The kitchen was full of dirty cups, stacked one on top of each other in the sink, on the drainer. And animals, animals everywhere. Luckily we ate out.

Jeff Beck was a vegetarian, so was I. We bonded over the vegetarian options on the menu. I had no idea I was having lunch with a living legend. We walked into the pub together and were treated with respect and deference. It felt special being in the pub with Jeff. They must have wondered who I was. I wish I'd known what I know today, I would have milked that moment....... (or made a tit of myself)

The boyfriend who had taken me to Jeff's house was his friend. This boyfriend was rich, very rich. We went to Jeff's house in his Range Rover. We could have gone in the Aston Martin, but there would have been no room for Jeff in the back of the Aston. There was room for Jeff in the back of the Range Rover, which is where I made him sit. My boyfriend was cross with me for making Jeff sit in the back. I didn't care...

I don't remember much else about my day with Jeff, I wish I did. Looking back on it now and knowing what a legend the man is I wish I'd paid more attention.

I met Jeff again a while later at the boyfriend's house. I was just passing, and said hello. Jeff must have wondered who I was.....


Funny how life is full of coincidences. Many years later I got a cat from the mad lady who'd I'd caught a glimpse of at Jeff Beck's house. At the time I was told she was his mad, ex-wife, ex-model who lived in a house in the grounds and had millions of stray cats. She later began a cat charity in Lewisham and I got a cat off her. I could see how beautiful she was straight away even though she was scruffy and dirty, with long straggly hair, holes in her socks and grimy nails. I did refrain from telling her I'd seen her wandering bare footed in the grounds of Jeff's mansion some years back. She still writes to me to ask for donations and to ask after the cat. (The cat I'm afraid is long gone)

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


It's nice to look at though. Very arty. Are they all transformers? Everything keeps going wobbly. Why is Keanu Reeves indestructible? Why are they lying in bed? Actually, too much trick photography. Actually, it's doing my brain in.

I will never understand the matrix, never. Oh, no she died. Now they've turned into funny pixel, lego characters.

Oh no, she's alive again. How did that happen? They're kissing. What is this all about? They're in a chair, they're on a building. He's nice to look at though, Keanu.

Maybe this will help.

It's OK, I'm over it.

No more comments about who I look like or who I don't look like. Far too self indulgent and narcissistic. Anyone would have thought I posted that to get myself compliments!

Haven't got time to post more....... Got to go and plant potatoes before they take over my garage, triffid like!

I should be like Trac and post a picture of someone like Keef, so here's my mate Jeff! (Did I ever tell you......)




Monday, May 01, 2006

Want to hear something really spooky?

Got a message from Meg who asked me if I'd been in Norwich today, I had. See her comments on yesterday's blog for more info. OMG!!! Her friend should have taken a photo of me! I wonder where I was when she saw me? Looking bored stiff while listening to FIL's monologue? Chewing my knuckles in desperation at his conversation? Yawning while he regales me with yet another memory of his? Duffing him up after he said I look like Pauline Quirke? Here are some photos I took between all of these things:

Well, we loved Norwich. What a great place. Bet these photos has made Betty go all funny.

This woman could be Meg's friend! How spooky would that be!