Public Services

I was moved last Thursday by the national outpouring of support for our wonderful NHS. One thing this awful virus has shown is how vital to our nation our Public Services are. It is a pity they have been under such sustained attack over recent years and chronically underfunded. There is an irony that the people who so attacked them are now depending on them! Enough of the soapbox!

Picture below is one I took last year with surfers surfing the Severn Bore-thought we needed something different!

Yesterday’s answers to the quiz

The opening line of Sunny Afternoon is “The tax man’s taken all my dough“- written by the brilliant Ray Davies.

Anna Mae Bullock is of course Tina Turner.

The Stones formed in Dartford.

The second person to get an album Grammy three times was Stevie Wonder.

Leonard Cohen wrote “Hallelujah” -many of you will probably remember the Jeff Buckley version -there are quite a few!

Today’s questions-name the animal homes of the following – not too difficult.

a) Otter  b) Eagle c) Hare d) Squirrel e) Crocodile


Lost Words/ New Words and Phrases

Currently trying out some ideas for a poem using the acrostic format that Robert Macfarlane used for his wonderful book. My lost words are all topical -ideas so far are Pub, Hug, Handshake, School, Sport, Shopping (well  I don’t miss that one) and possibly Holiday. New words I’ve been musing on are Covid 19, Testing, Spreading, Lock Down, Social Distancing, Self Isolating, Ramp Up, Significant Time. Anyone got any other thoughts?  Unlikely I will do all of the above.

Music theme for today’s questions. A mixed bunch-enjoy!

  1. What is the opening line of the Kinks song “Sunny Afternoon”?
  2. What is the stage name of Anna Mae Bullock?
  3. What was the town where the Rolling Stones formed?
  4. Only two artists have won Album of the Year on three occasions in the first 60 years of Grammy history. One is Frank Sinatra. Who is the other?
  5. “Hallelujah” is a song written by which Canadian singer?



Thought I would make the Wren today’s title because I’m currently reading a book on the Wren by Stephen Moss and have been watching them in the garden. A wonderful charismatic bird with a surprisingly loud song for a little bird.

Talking of books I’ve just finished “Rings of Saturn” by W.G. Sebald for Book Club -we are aiming to discuss it on Zoom which will be a first for us.

Today’s exercise was a ride starting with the strong wind behind me so I was hurtling down the A38 but a real shock as I started the return leg!

Yesterday’s answers to the Quiz

!) Ellen MacArthur was the sailor   2) Jim Hines the first sub 10 second 100 metres 3) Richard Whitely the first face on Chanel 4.

No Quiz today as it is a Sunday (could say every day feels like a Sunday!)

North Wind

It was a bitter wind today and I don’t mean the metaphorical one! Supposed to be a colder one tomorrow! Short blog today here are yesterday’s answers.

The first female newsreader was Angela Rippon   2. The first England player to be sent off was Alan Mullery 3. The first Sherlock Holmes story Was A Study in Scarlet.

Today’s questions

  1. Who was the first woman to sail round the world single handed in under 100 days?
  2. Who was the first man to run 100 metres in under 10 seconds?
  3. Who was the first person to be seen on Channel 4?




Not sure if you have heard Ralph McTell’s new verse for Streets of London which certainly resonates with the crisis we are all facing. It is the first verse he has added in over 50 years. He is still an excellent song writer as well as an outstanding guitarist. I have followed him ever since I first heard that wonderful rich voice painting vivid pictures in words at Cambridge Folk Festival; it was a memorable weekend in my formative years.

Yesterday’s answers to the Food questions are…..1)Vermicelli is little worms    2) Toffee Day is in January (8th) 3) Red Onion originated in Italy 4) Paella’s name  comes from the pan that it is cooked in  5) It is the root of Tumeric that is the spice we know.

Today’s questions are all Firsts

a) Who was the first woman to read the news in Britain? b) Who was the first footballer sent off playing for England? c) What was the first Sherlock Holmes story?

More firsts tomorrow!

Virtual Story Telling!!!

Last night was a bizarre experience performing for Folk Tales in Bristol over the internet! Not sure what it was like for the audience but Story Telling to a lap top was certainly surreal for me-normally I feed off my audience and react accordingly. All I could see of the audience was individual squares most of them shaded in and a few who had their cameras switched on. I suppose it is an experience to build on! The Two Severn Bores are looking to record a pod cast in the future so we won’t see an audience then, our problem will be recording in separate places.

We are fortunate where we live in Frampton-on-Severn because you can walk and easily keep your distance from others. I do get on my bike (once a day of course on the days I haven’t walked )and know lots of country roads where you hardly see anyone. I sympathise with all those people in flats or in densely populated areas. It is imperative we stick to the rules.

Quiz Time:

Last questions were on beer here are the answers a) Stella Artois-Belgium b) Moosehead –Canada c) DAB-Germany  d) Kronebourg 1664-France e) Breda Royal Beer –Holland

Today’s Teaser: I thought I would do food for today’s theme as we all have more time to cook!

  1. Which type of pasta’s name  means “Little Worms”?
  2. English Toffee Day is in what month?
  3. In which country do red onions originate?
  4. How does Paella get its name?
  5. Which part of a Turmeric plant is dried and used in Indian cooking?

Stay Safe Folks!

Live at Folk Tales on Wednesday

Yes a live performance – we are testing technology tonight and if it all goes well there will be a short version of Folk Tales tomorrow (Wednesday) which is a monthly music and stories night in Bristol it will be at 8 p.m. I will post again late tomorrow morning with details for those of you interested and might want some live entertainment! Dan (other half of Two Severn Bores) and I will be doing a portion of our “Walking the Tightrope” Show. It will be interesting talking to a computer screen instead of an audience.

Answer to yesterday’s questions Persephone is the daughter of Demeter, Polyphemus is the Cyclops outwitted by Odysseus, the other two Gorgons were Stheno and Euryate who were both immortal and fearsome Medusa was not!

Today’s questions revolve around Beer! What countries do the following well known brands come from? You can probably do most of them with a guess!

a) Stella Artois  b) Moosehead  c) DAB d) Kronebourg 1664, e) Breda Royal Beer

Greek Myths

Today’s title refers to today’s questions for the blog-I hope you all appreciate the variety of topics I have asked questions about! Of course I am a Story Teller and I often tell Greek Myths to both young people and adults-so I can be self indulgent!

Just a small bit of stuff. We have had a busy sort of day running errands for neighbours and then tackling the garden. I am using the bike where I can do to jobs/shopping etc., so I get my exercise-how long for not sure. I am making sure I keep my distance so hopefully I will be able to continue. That might change later tonight!

Yesterday’s answers to the nautical questions  1. Captain Haddock was of course from the Tin Tin books by Herge. 2. Captain Smollett and his ship the Hispaniola was from that timeless classic Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. 3. Captain Hook was from Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie and his ship was the Jolly Roger. 4. Captain Nemo was from Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne and his ship was the Nautilus. 5. Ahab was from Moby Dick and the ship was the Pequod by Herman Melville. Finally Pugwash’s ship was the Black Pig.

So some Greek Myth questions for today.

  1. Who was Persephone’s mother? 2. What was the name of the Cyclops outwitted by Odysseus? 3. There were three Gorgons– everyone usually knows about Medusa who were the other two?