Polling card arrived this morning.

I’ve spent the last five days printing assorted stuff for other Green Parties in near-by constituencies – over 16,000 bits of paper, each of which needs to go through the printer twice (ie once for each side), giving a total of nearly 33,000 sides. Not exactly brilliant for arthritic wrists and thumbs!

Needless to say, I won’t be voting for the incumbent hereditary Tory, “Private” Walker, son of Baron Walker of Worcester. Since he started feeding at the Government trough, he’s been nothing but a payroll vote ..




I went into town yesterday afternoon with my niece Phoebe. When she visited in summer 2017, we had lunch at one of the tables outside Browns, and she was intrigued today to see water level roughly where her food had been!

Other successes in town were a trawl through the charity shops, resulting in a pair of trousers for her – and a pair of decent Levi’s for me. £8 – what a result – and it’s almost unheard-of for me to find anything in the 30W 34L range.

Then off to pack it in our local veggie/zero-waste shop, to refill the washing up liquid. Only the second refill in the year the shop’s been open, and the owner (Phillipa) actually recognised me and called me by name, which impressed Phoebe! There were also plenty of Vegan wax food wraps on display, so I bought Phoebe a couple, as she’s only been able to find ones containing beeswax which doesn’t work for her Vegan housemates.

Then via ASDA to the bus stop, and a rather long wait in increasingly-cold conditions. Fortunately, although it was very nearly full, we did manage to get seats.


floods in front of Browns
floods in front of Browns

It’s only the second time that I’ve made crumpets from scratch. I think I’m starting to get the hang of it: most of the batch had the requisite appearance of numerous holes on the top.


the Evenlode

A glorious walk down to the River Evenlode from my Mum’s this afternoon. Surprisingly,even after the recent rain, the river was well within it banks – though looking extremely muddy and turbid.

I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be able to manage this walk of about a mile each way.- aching hips and struggling rather a lot on the way back (which is, of course, up hill). Still, good to have done it, and there were even a few sunny spells.

hospital visit etc

Just home, after an exhausting 24 hours over visiting my Mum, who had (yet another) ambulance to hospital yesterday. This time, they’re keeping her in a bit longer than “just overnight for observation and assessment”, and are starting to realise that she’ll need more home support in place before she can be discharged. I’m back over there tomorrow evening, at which point she may or may not be discharged.

In the meantime, soaking in a hot bath for an hour is needed, to free up all the muscles in my back. Shitty weather & back-breaking train seats & the occasional over-enthusiastic cab driver driving through potholes have meant doses of tramadol to enable me to walk even fifty yards (they don’t actually stop it hurting – they simply make me not mind how much it hurts!). Once Mum is settled a bit, I think I’d better arrange a GP visit for myself, as I’m not normally this mobility-impaired.

autumn walk

Over at my Mum’s in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds yesterday, and managed a brief walk on the Common. Actually, it nearly did for me – I’ve been fairly housebound for the past ten days, and coming back from the Common I began to seriously wonder if I was going to make it back to the house! A week of the “sunshine and heavy showers” thing has done my back no favours.

I was glad to see a couple of Fly Agaric out. None were visible when I was last there, probably due to the dry late summer, and most of the usual places still don’t have any. Perhaps they’re just very late this year, and continuing damp may bring them out.




Nipped out in a brief break between showers to dig a few carrots for tonight’s stew.

I love the smell of fresh carrots being scrubbed in the sink – it’s one of the scent milestones of the year (following on from the glorious smell of pinching out side-shoots on tomatoes).

an hour of autumn tidying

A sunny (but chilly) spell this afternoon, and with enough painkillers I could actually use my hands properly! Front rose and scarlet sage pruned.

Tomato plants cut down (they’ll go in the once-a-year garden waste collection, as if seeds get in the compost it’s a bugger – they end up coming up everywhere!). The few remaining tomatoes are in a bowl in the kitchen, where hopefully most of them will gradually ripen.

moderately housebound

The weather yesterday was absolutely the worst for me: heavy showers interspersed with bright sunshine! Every joint in my upper body was aching, so I lit the fire and did nothing all day.

Today is a bit better, though shoulders still very stiff and unpleasant. I occupied myself with working out next year’s “cropping plan” for the garden – similar to last year, but with a few improvements from this year’s experiences.