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Monday, 30 June 2014

PATIENCE . . . BE PATIENT. . . . WHILST YOU PLAY PATIENCE

Magpie Tales 

strikes again

This week Tess Kincade sets our topic for MAG226

Is this just a game of Clock Patience? 
. . . . . or is this not quite as it seems?

A Game of Patience, 1937, Meredith Frampton


She plays out her cards, yet the key aces are not there, 
and she does not know where she can find them. 
Her eyes lack fulfilment and reveal a look of sorrow,
for destiny has dealt her such a lonely hand.

Alone she sits in contemplation, 
willing a daydream;
craving excitement, desiring adventure, 
wanting a connection with someone's soul.
A man in her life who can challenge her,
make her come alive and make her feel like a woman.
A man who can satisfy all the secret longings of her heart,
A man she can find only in her dreams.

She sees him in her mind and wishes he were real, 
She can see him whenever she wants.
He is standing right now not far from her
. . . . .  the King of the pack, embedded in her soul.



Saturday, 28 June 2014

QUOTATIONS TO BRIGHTEN ANY WEEKEND -1-




Hello Folks!

And welcome to my new regular end of week feature

Quotations To Brighten Any Weekend


. . . .  where we can relax after our busy week, have a few laughs and share some famous words of wisdom and humour.

In England we have a saying "Poet's Day" which means "Push Off Early, tomorrow is Saturday!" . . . so in a sense our weekend starts in Friday afternoon.  I believe the American equivalent is TGIF, meaning "Thank God It's Friday!"

I have a very funny book, which I have enjoyed for over 30 years.  Some of these famous wisecracks are taken straight from it, with others from various sources elsewhere:

Ready? - well here goes! and hope you like them!

I'll start with a few Instant Quips!

Essayist Charles Lamb said:
"The greatest pleasure I know is to do good by stealth, and to have it found out by accident."

Jerome L. Jerome, author of 'Three Men In A Boat' argued:

"It is always the best policy to speak the truth, unless of course  you are an exceptionally good liar."

Winston Churchill considers:
"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick them selves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened."

Mark Twain was a genius and had two things to say, worthy of note about righteousness:

"To be good is noble, but to teach others to be good is nobler - and less trouble!"

"Always do right: this will gratify some people and astonish the rest!"

The Frenchman, Talleyrand, in 1815 uttered these famous words:

"Mistrust first impulses, they are always good." 

Robert Musil was rather sceptical of advancing technology, when he said:

"Progress would be a wonderful thing - if only it would stop!

George Bernard Shaw had a slightly different take on a well established quotation:

"Do not do unto others as you would they should do unto you.  Their tastes may not be the same."

Heinrich Heine, German poet:

"One should forgive ones enemies, but not before they are hanged!"

Will Rogers, American humorist:

"Everything is funny as long as it is happening to somebody else!"

American novelist James Branch Cabell:

"The optimist proclaims that we live in the best of all possible worlds, and the pessimist fears this is true."

Arthur Bloch, shrewd commenter,

"The man who can smile when things go wrong has thought of someone he can blame it on,"

Robert Frost, American Poet:

"The brain is a wonderful organ.  It starts working the moment you get up in the morning and does not stop until you get into the office."



More next Weekend - enjoy this one!

. . . .  and please stop by at EVA's for some more laughs at her highly hilarious Weekend Silliness slot.



Thursday, 26 June 2014

SWEET SUMMER



This week's Magpie Tales presents MAG225, a theme set by Tess Kincade.


Sweet Summer, 1912. John William Waterhouse


This lady's not as promiscuous as she appears
Even though she's laid unclad for 1 0 2 years
John William Waterhouse is clearly to blame
When he painted Sweet Summer; of worldwide fame.

Young John in his day was a bit of a lad:
He painted his ladies, all scantily clad.
Not realising such serious wardrobe malfunctions
Might lead to arrest and some court injunctions.

One wonders as she lay for that lengthy repose
She might to the sun become over exposed
In 1912 there was no such thing as sun lotion
And the artist thought only of love and emotion.

I don't think it fitting to comment much more
I'll leave that to others, who will come to the fore.


I wonder what next week's prompt will bring!




Sunday, 22 June 2014

DEATH OF TREVOR, A RADIO PRESENTER FRIEND



I was shocked to hear the sad news of the sudden death at home last Friday of my friend Trevor Fry, aged just 68. 

Trevor was a well loved radio presenter for our local BBC Radio Bristol station, where he worked for 17 years.  He loved every minute of his job.

I got to know Trevor around 2000 when I sent him a CD of my daughter, Selina, then aged 18.  He loved it and played a number of tracks from it and some of her other recordings almost every night on his late night show for a couple of years.  He didn't have to do this!  That was the measure of this wonderful man - so kind in every way and always wanting to help whenever he could.  He was genuinely interested to promote her and was always thrilled to see evidence of her increased popularity.

Many listeners asked for a copy of her CD which I sent all over the South West Region and beyond, sometimes even abroad.  On one occasion Trevor over-ran his news announcement, apologising that he could not interrupt her singing "Autumn Leaves" and couldn't ruin a good rendition of a good song,  and finished by saying to his producer, "Sorry Governor, I just couldn't fade her out".  

Another time he said, "Well I was going to play The Eagles but someone has asked me to play Selina, so here is the request, 'Schubert's Ave Maria', sung by our own, the lovely Selina!"

News keeps coming in and we now have an opportunity via THIS LINK to hear a tribute to Trevor by another well loved presenter Richard Lewis, who also played Selina on his show regularly.

I wish to pay my deepest respect and condolences to his wife, Sue, and their children.

I am so touched by the stature and generosity of this man - there are tears in my eyes even as I type this.  Everybody loved Trevor.


Trevor believed in promoting local talent and we became good friends, with me emailing him regularly on his late night show with various bits of humour, which he often read out on his show.  Listeners at that time soon got to know me as well for my contributions, which was great fun - rather like blogging is today.  I spoke by phone a few times on his show because he encouraged audience participation; plus of course he liked my sense of humour.

I am so pleased I have a photo of Trevor with my daughter and his son, taken by me around 2001 when Selina did a gig for him for his recorded show, along with other artists, at The Mall shopping centre at Cribbs Causeway, near Bristol. 

I heard the sad news from my sister, Maggie May of  Nuts In May.  She came with us to that event at The Mall and she too met Trevor and his boy.  Maggie is equally gutted by the news since she is a regular listener to another programme he hosted on Sunday mornings called "Sunday Starts".


  
Thank you Trevor for all your support for my daughter, who did make her mark for a few years singing in Bristol and surrounding areas, pubs, clubs, cabaret and church weddings and meeting success in various talent competitions. 


You were so generous with your support helping young musicians and singers, like Selina in the area. 


We appreciate your help and friendship more than words can tell, and I will miss you greatly, along with all your many friends in Bristol and the entire South West region.

I hope by now you might have met my darling wife Maria who passed on a year before you.  I am sure she will be thanking you too.

Trevor was probably the most well loved radio presenter and he will be mourned by friends and colleagues everywhere.

I have another link to an official newspaper announcement for those interested, HERE


I feel so sad today, and rather weepy!

Goodnight Trevor - you were the best!

Until we meet again.


RIP


Wednesday, 18 June 2014

ROBIN SOLVES MAGPIE TWINS PROBLEM

Since Sunday the entire Magpie Tales community have been scratching their heads, searching their souls, expounding all kinds of theories, writing poetic masterpieces and tall stories, in the hope that these silly little men will bury the hatchet once and for all, turn round, face each other, shake hands, have a beer - and then perhaps we can all go home!   


So I am having another go because, a little birdie has told me we are all on the wrong track!



A little British Robin, no less, has the answer to MAG 224.  


He had accompanied me in a garden all morning, and was so pleased with all the worms I found for him, he came right up to me and said, "Magpies! Don't trust any of them, NOR listen to any of their tales! - I have the correct solution."

Bright little chap, isn't he? - A very high I.Q. and in MENSA


He continued, "Just look at that picture again!"


Not To Be Reproduced, 1937, Rene Magritte 


"That chap in the mirror wants such a kick up the derrier!"

"Solve this riddle and he MUST turn round - but a word of warning. The second number I am going to give you is not as it seems - it is a different number than 32 and there just is there to let you know what the actual word sounds like.  
A little lateral thinking is required, ok!"


"Are you ready?"

"There were twins!
One was 30 and the other 32 (remember, not actual!)
One was born in March
And the other's birthday was in September.
And they both married each other!
How is all this possible?"

"Now sit down Eddie and have your highly self indulgent Great British Breakfast, with lashings of Cholesterol and try to fathom it out.  Come on Eddie, eat it all up!" 


Burp! - Lovely!

Well, folks what do you reckon? 

This is just a fun entry;  press HERE for my main attempt.

I am not serious all the time, as my regular readers well know.

Monday, 16 June 2014

TURNABOUT

Another Week - another subject, set for us by Tess Kincaid of of  Magpie Tales


Now what have we here? 
. . . .  and what on earth can I make of this one?   MAG 224 )

Not To Be Reproduced, 1937, Rene Magritte 


TURNABOUT

Why? . . . . . tell me why!

You are like an estranged brother

A person, now lost to me,
yet someone I know so well.
A person gone from my life,
as if belonging to another dimension.

This is not the man who marched with me;
 spitting life in the eye, and with that magical spring in his step,
matching my every stride,
as we tossed away all life's problems, 
without a single care in this entire world.

Neither is he the man I knew of high self esteem;
able to hold his head high and brimming with love and kindness.
He, as I, had a twinkle in his eye and a song in his voice,
and our laughter punctuated each and every delightful day,
as if our hearts and soul were as one.
  
We were inseparable
We lived such a happy life as one.
Our very existence was perfection
and we dwelt in total harmony with one another.

Until that dreadful thing happened,
. . . that despicable thing
which came between us like a veil of steel over our eyes.
It was then I felt you turn away from me,
and you told me you did not want to know me.

. . . .  and my heart was pierced and died with utter sorrow.

Life and circumstances were the cause of this; not me.
Life does that, driving its wedges with its many complications,
and often lacerating our hearts.

Is not blood much thicker than water?
Is not life far too short for such altercation?
Are not sweet memories more powerful than any heated argument?

Today you are like antimatter
which cannot mix with me, or even face me
without the risk of total annihilation.

. . .  that is unless my soul hears a gentle knock from you. 
A small gentle voice wanting reconciliation
 would be sufficient to open the door of my heart.
It would not require those impossible words, "I'm sorry!"
That price I know would be far too high to pay.

Yet you know my heart is always open to you  . . .  always.

My earnest prayer is that one day I will again see your smiling face,
and you will stand before me holding those outstretched hands to beckon me in friendship.

Even now you are someone whom I love,
A kindred spirit I have known always and thought I would for
ever.

* * * * * *

For those who missed baby Peter's photos press HERE

Saturday, 14 June 2014

FATHER'S DAY MINUS ONE


Well, I had a surprise visit this morning by a 'cute' little fellow, who brought both his parents along.

Eat your heart out!! - it's my grandson, Peter.

Just look at those big blue eyes!

I think he'll be just like his grandpa - he'll just see something he wants and will just go out and get it - who can resist him?


Here he is sitting in Maria's rocking chair - I bet she's smiling down at him from Heaven.  


He's quite a little 'rocker' for only 8 months and his balance is terrific.  He learned very quickly how to rock the chair and never once fell forward. 

He eats his solid like there was no tomorrow - it is incredible the amount he stuffs in that cute little mouth and it never comes out!
He was happy wearing his sun hat because in England we are experiencing a heatwave and he had been outside, but eventually he took it off and got down to a really meaningful and serious conversation with his Grandpa, in baby language.  Yes, I still remember it!


. . . . . but not before demolishing a lion


"It was so easy grandpa, even a baby could do it! . . . he is just a big soft pussy cat!"



He put on his hat again and gave us a long rendition of "Dadadadadada!", obviously expressing his affection for his father, my son Jon . . . . but his mother, Lisa, is being very patient to hear the magic words, "Mamamamama"

His Grandpa then took him into the lounge to give him a piano lesson; his second, and boy did he have some fun!  He was squealing with delight as he banged away at the bass notes whilst his Grandpa tried hard to add the melody on top.  We were there for over half an hour.

About a week ago he visited me again with Jon and Lisa and we took a few shots of him in my somewhat overgrown garden.


He rather liked Grandpa's clematis flower and soon tried to eat it.


He didn't want Grandpa's sun hat, "Silly thing!", he said, "it's far too big for me, but I want that flower!"


And here are the proud parents - love them to bits - both just 22.

Lisa and Jon - I am so proud of them both.  What a gorgeous little family.  Lisa was telling me that many people stop her and ask if they can admire Peter, saying he is the most adorable baby they have seen - I wonder if he will be a movie star!

They are coming over to see me tomorrow for Father's Day and so are my daughter, Selina, and Matt - I love them lots too.  I have always brought up my kids to be very affectionate and considerate and kind.

This has been re-payed many-fold, for they are both well loved and useful members of the community.

Jon once sent me a card, "No matter how tall I grow dad, I shall always look up to you!"

And Selina's card, "Anyone can be a Father, but it takes someone real special to be  a Daddy!"

They both know how to get round their dad.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

REPLAY


Photo via Magpie Tales Poetry Prompt

REPLAY

Through a secret door of time and space
My mind raced back to that golden sunny afternoon.

I replayed our conversation, over and over;
Searching in vain for unrecorded words, I longed to hear.

I hoped upon hope your lips might have spoken them,
As we walked together hand in hand along a lazy river bank.

And when I paused to steal a kiss and fleetingly meet your heart,
Just three little words were all I wanted you to say.

Yet no matter how many times I rewind and replay the tape,
These words remain elusive, and your heart remains your own.

Perhaps if I fast forward a little further . . .  maybe into my soul and imagination . . . . 

I may yet hear you say . . . . . 

"I love you!"

♥  ♥  ♥  


Written for Tess and The Mag 223

Recently I joined The Magpie. It is a fun weekly exercise when a subject is provided for us every Sunday, to galvanise our cerebral hemispheres into action.

I hope you enjoyed my first effort  - the ever romantic Eddie!

I am afraid the gardening has gone to pot, yet again!

Monday, 9 June 2014

An unexpected DIAL-a-RIDE thank you!

I was surprised when I got to the Dial-a-Ride office on Friday.

I was presented with this award


Did I think it was just for me?

Well hardly had the thought crossed my mind when my good friend Ian, who runs the office on Fridays and also is a volunteer, was quick to point out he had one as well.  We 'rib' each other something rotten do us two, so I said,

"Come here, darling! and let's have our photo taken!"

"Oh Shit! I've forgotten my camera!"

There was raucous laughter as the swear box was passed to me and I said, "Gosh this is heavy, you lot must have done a lot of swearing - How much?"

"Twenty pence!"

"In that case I'll have forty pence worth, I said, "Oh bugger, I said Shit!"

(laughs)

The manager's wife, the delightful Julie, said she would use her cellphone and duly obliged, "Smile! . . . . .  cheese! . . . . . snap!"

She emailed me the photo - thanks Julie . . . . and Ian, get on with your work!


On seeing the result of Julie's handy work I said,

"Oh Ian! what a dreadful photo of you! . . . . . . !" 

"What do you mean of me? Just look at you!", he said.

We proceeded to banter each other and soon had the whole office in uproar with Julie and the manager joining in! 

 You see we tend to be on the jovial side - just look at Terry, the manager:


Mind you . . . .  two can play at that game if it's a hat fashion show you want:


But I would much rather see this hat on this adorable young lady who was the heart throb of the Ambulance Station and with whom I used to work whilst in service - you see we had a few perks in the service didn't we?


But I digress . . . . these are but distant memories of my Ambulance days and by now everyone is going to shout at me,


"Eddie get back to the present and get to the point?"

"OK"



As many will know I drive for Dial-a-Ride in my home town. I have worked there in a full time capacity twice, but now I am an unpaid volunteer driver, working for them every Friday. 

I just love it!

  We have three regular paid drivers and several other volunteer drivers including myself, plus of course Ian, who works in the office, manning the telephone desk and inputting appointments onto the computer.  Ian, like me, works just on a Friday.  In fact when I was working full time I used to call him "Man Friday".

Now, it seems Dial-a-Ride has two Man Fridays. him and me!"

Last year Ian and I attended a First Aid course held by two gorgeous paramedic ladies - unfortunately I do not have their photographs. 
It was a refresher course for me because I am well trained in such matters like CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation)

We practised resuscitating a non breathing unconscious patient using a manikin - after opening the airway by tilting the head back, 30 compressions, 2 breaths, 30 compressions 2 breaths . . . . 


The procedure has changed somewhat since I was in the Ambulance Service.

I was taught when entering a possible dangerous situation where a patient is injured and unconscious we should apply "Dr ABC" which stands for:

check for Dangers, check patient Responses, check Airway, check Breathing and check Circulation.

Nowadays the girls taught us this has changed to DrSHAB

meaning:

Check for Dangers, check patient Responses, SHOUT for help, check Airway and check Breathing.

They leave out circulation because if the patients airway is closed and there is no breathing then it will be almost impossible to detect any circulation.


"Eddie Get back to the point of the story!"

"OK"


The point is that sometimes I call Ian, Dr Shab and sometimes he calls me Dr ABC, and I make a point that he has no circulation! lol

The poor man has such a bad memory though because now he has forgotten who Dr ABC and Dr Shab are.

_________________________________________________________

All these HAT DISPLAYS remind me of a savage Vi-Queen I met on Jinksy's blog a while ago.  Geepers she is enough to put the fear of God into anyone, including Queen Boadicea, Maggie Thatcher and Ada Trellis.


  Yes, it really is Jinksy!  You really wouldn't think so after reading about that sweet and innocent lady I met last week and featured in my previous post.

Just take a look at this!  

What a battle axe!

HELP!



The full story about that one is HERE for those brave enough to read it.

______________________________________________________________________

Something more sensible next week - maybe!

Thursday, 5 June 2014

EDDIE meets JINKSY

It is not every day two bloggers meet but yesterday I was privileged to meet Jinksy, who lives about 90 miles from me.  

Jinksy is one of the first people I met in BlogLand and I have known her for about 6 years and we have become good friends.  

The occasion for us meeting arose when Jinksy, known as Pen to her friends, kindly crocheted a beautiful cuddle blanket for me to keep me warm in the winter.  She had offered to post it to me but I thought it would be a golden opportunity to meet up, so we arranged it last week.

I quickly discovered Pen was not the slightest bit crotchety in any way, lol, although she is a real 'whiz' at crocheting - and here is the living proof - a Napple Blanket, as Pen calls her special creations.  Isn't it gorgeous?



"Why does she call it a Napple Blanket?", did I hear you ask?.  Well, her surname is Smith and she is known as Granny Smith to her grandchildren. Granny Smith is a variety of Apple but unfortunately one of her grandchildren could not pronounce the word 'Apple' but said 'Napple' instead. So the word stuck - hence the name Napple Blanket and hence her blog name, Napple Notes.  For the full story to go HERE

Here is another shot of us playing 'footsie' under my nice brand new Napple Blanket. Why Jinksy, I didn't know you cared!



And you can see how pleased and proud I am to be wearing my blanket and you can see how happy I was to meet Pen and spend some time with her yesterday, discussing blogging, poetry, life and music . . . . . and she fed me a very appetising lunch, and even treated me to strawberries and cream. Thank you.



And what about Pen?  Well she was a little camera shy, partly because I had caught her a little early before she had time to apply all her Estee Lauder, as you ladies do. 

You ladies are all the same - none of you like your photographs taken, do you? 

But I managed to get one shot of her in a moment of weakness. The next one was with her winking at me so I thought that was not entirely appropriate to publish for a family show.



Unfortunately we could not get a shot of us together to celebrate this momentous occasion - our attempts at holding the camera at arms length were pitiful to say the least and there was no-one else to take the shot.

Pen runs two blogs.   Her first Napple Notes is her general blog and she runs a second for poetry, her first love, and that is known as Alias Jinksy.

Please visit her - she is a very talented writer, particularly for poetry.

Pen is a dab hand at using Photoshop and a few years ago she created this little 'bloggy' motive for me, which some will recognise.  I have it still on my side bar:




En route to see Pen my SatNav was most unkind to me and I almost responded to it and reprimanded it in a Basil Fawlty way.  I keyed in Pen's address and, not fully concentrating, I was alarmed to see the distance was 123 miles instead of the 80+ miles I was expecting.  

So I had to drive like the clappers to get there on time, almost like I did during my ambulance days, with blue flashing lights. The silly SatNav had chosen the Motorway route instead of the quickest route, which I later found was only 91 miles.  I still managed to make it to Pen's house by 12 noon as agreed, on the dot, after breaking the sound barrier on the way. 

When it was time for me to leave I entered HOME on my SatNav and this time it told me the truth, so I forgave it. I drove a leisurely return journey via the scenic route - very beautiful scenery unlike boring old motorways.

Thank you Pen for a very enjoyable day and I will always treasure my Napple Blanket and our meeting.  Perhaps we can meet up again another day.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

WE ALWAYS TRIED TO GO THE EXTRA MILE

I cannot reveal, or show, this lady patient in the wheelchair, but let's call her Doris. She was loved by all the ambulance crews.



 Sadly Doris is no longer with us. She was one of my favourite patients, amongst many, and I collected her from a nursing home three times a week to take to a nearby hospital for kidney dialysis.  Doris was wheelchair bound but could be transferred to a seat with some assistance.  

She was one of 6 patients I transferred three times a week and it became quite a social occasion for them, although obviously all of them would prefer to have normally functioning kidneys. 

After four hours on dialysis machines I took them all back home again, spending those four hours amusing myself at the seaside, sometimes enjoying the beautiful countryside and walking around my favourite lake. It was a great job! Wasn't I lucky to do this for two years before I went onto other duries.

I always took Doris home first, since she lived nearest to the hospital and at the nursing home they became quite fond of me; always offering me some cake and a cup of tea and staying for a chat and a joke.  

Must be the lad's charm, working!

Doris was a very likeable lady, always smiling and making the best if things - she was born and lived at the seaside town an longed to see more of the sea front, since there was no-one available to take her.  I made sure that was put right so I arrived 10 minutes early next day and treated her to a slow journey right across the entire sea front and back again,  She could see it perfectly from the ambulance and as an extra treat I drove onto the sands on a nearby beach so she could see  a grand view of the pier. Then we drove to the dialysis unit. 

She was so thrilled - it was almost as if I had given her £100.

I made sure I did this for her every time.

During that year at the sea front was constructed a big wheel which she admired and said she'd love to ride on it  I surprised her one day - I journeyed in my own car one Saturday and arrived at the nursing home and said I had a special treat for her - and took her for a ride on the big wheel.  She was so thrilled.

I made sure with the control desk that if anyone else stood in for me for those three days they would always remember to take Doris for her trip along the sea front.


It was always sad when a renal patient died - we went into a kind on mourning for a while.  Non of these patients survived very long because the dialysis machines are far inferior to our wonderful kidneys and they had only 12 hours a week to filter out all the impurities, whereas we have 168 hours week in week out. 


___________________________

More ambulance stories to follow