My City of Ruins

I chose the Spingsteen title for today because the chorus is Rise Up. As I finally completed climbing 7,500 metres on my bike in June today. Just a silly target for an immature man to aim for! The only other times I have achieved this in a month is my special cycling adventures. My foray into the Alps, the Pyrenees and last year’s cycle ride down through Wales.

Dan the other half of Two Severn Bores tells me the pod cast on the River Severn  has been tidied up and hopefully will soon be available in the near future. We were discussing initial ideas for a future project -we may develop one of them in the second part of the year and maybe next year we will be able to perform again-if not may be the pod cast route!

Don’t Stand So Close To Me

Why didn’t I think about this song title by The Police before? Seems appropriate for the world we now live in! It does feel like we have now reached crossing our fingers time till we see how things work out.

Good news I think I may of sorted my technological issues about transferring my story without any help! Feel quite pleased with myself! So will attempt to record my library story properly tomorrow!

Dance With The Dragon

Jefferson Starship provide the title for today’s blog title because I have been playing on and off all afternoon with recording me! I was recording me telling one of my Cedric the Dragon stories that I am hoping to do for the Library service. I managed to record it with only a couple of hiccups. A good learning exercise on being able to get the lighting, sound and the positioning right. Also it has been a good opportunity to practice relearning an old story. I will re-record it tomorrow!

Bring me Sunshine again!!!!!!

Had to be the song that our most famous fan of the past sang with Little Ern today! Sorry for those of you non footballing readers but my team reignited the dream today with an excellent away win at Swansea. They certainly played well and thoroughly deserved it. Originally I had 7 tickets for this game that should of been played in March. As I have mentioned before it is surreal watching games devoid of fans.



Willow Tree


Seth Lakeman’s song is today’s title although I really wanted a song about a Flowering Cherry tree but Seth will do! Our beautiful Flowering Cherry that I have mentioned recently had to finally come down today, it was sadly beginning to rot and we have had two new misses this year with things falling off. Steve who comes and does those sort of jobs for us came with his chain saw and I was shredder and tidy up man! It was sweltering in the sun so I have drunk plenty of iced water!  The pictures in the blog are of better days when in full blossom. Now we are left with an empty space and lots of logs and bags of shreddings!

Yesterday was our monthly bird survey out by the river -it was delayed a week because last week the rain was torrential! We didn’t see anything out of the ordinary but last month’s was exceptional. A Spotted Crake has been near where we survey (only 28 males in the UK) but no sight or sound of it!

Still have some work to do on me developing my technology skills before I record stories for Gloucestershire libraries!

I am in contact with Jane Fryer the illustrator about doing pictures for my new story-watch this space!




Still Blogging???????

Yes I am but as I said yesterday it won’t necessarily be every day! Wow what a scorcher today! I went out early for a long bike ride before it got unbearable! The field of poppies in the picture below I saw near Tetbury!

Still struggling with technology may need the help of a young person!

Anyway yesterday’s answers

a) Parkin is a type of gingerbread cake traditionally with oatmeal and treacle  b) Armagnac is Brandy  c) NO HANDY CAR is Chardonnay d) Singapore Sling has gin in it e) Apricot Jam is in Battenberg Cake



Clare and I went for a lovely ride today to have coffee and cake in Berkeley. After eating wonderful cakes we cycled round the Halmore Loop with wonderful views of the River on a beautiful day.

I am busy testing out doing a video on my iphone for doing Story Telling for the Libraries. My problem is I am being technology challenged to get it onto my lap top! ARGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

Just to let all know I may not always blog every day now lock down is slowly being lifted.Today is the last quiz for a while as well-I hope you have enjoyed doing them!

Yesterday’s answers on Author’s quiz

a) The Reverend Awdry wrote Thomas the Tank Engine books   b) A Tale of Two Cities was Dickens best selling book of all time-I was surprised by that!  c) Atticus Finch was in To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee  d) Captain Corelli’s Mandolin was written by Louis de Bernieres   e)  Yossarian was the main character in Catch 22 by Harper Lee 

Today’s Quiz is all on refreshments!!!!

a) If you were having Parkin what type of food would you be eating?   b) What sort of spirit is Armagnac?  c) A Singapore Sling is based on which alcoholic drink? d) Work out the anagram for a drink NO HANDY CAR  e) What flavour of jam would usually be used in a Battenberg cake?

The Luminaries

Not a song title today a book title instead! I don’t know if any of you watched the first episode of The Luminaries last night but when I saw it was on it brought a smile to my face. It was a book we did for Book Club. It is a weighty tome and from what I recall one or two of our bookies didn’t finish it. Although it was a Booker prize winner the consensus amongst our group you could start reading at page 465! (You need to have read it to understand this point!) Will be interested to see how the T.V. goes on recreating the novel. We did drive through Hokitka where the book is set when we were in New Zealand.

Today’s Quiz is on Authors!

a) Who wrote the Thomas the Tank Engine Books?  b) Which Dickens book published in 1859 has sold over two million copies and is his best selling book?  c) Who wrote the book where Atticus Finch is the main character?  d) Who wrote Captain Corelli’s Mandolin?  e) Who wrote the book where Captain John Yossarian is the main character and the book’s title has become a well known phrase for a conundrum


Struggled a bit with a song title for the solstice -I did google but didn’t really know the songs so no song title today! I know plenty of summer songs many of which I have used as blog titles!

Still spending time dealing with the mess the cherry tree caused, so it has involved considerable sawing and shredding! Tiring work!

Went for a ride with pals today and once again we were able to have our coffee and cake. It is bizarre that you can’t sit down you just stand outside the café!

Good news that our juvenile Nuthatch is now regular visitor to our bird table, it is strange that we see a young bird but haven’t seen an adult bird this summer!

Yesterday’s Quiz answers on Trees

a) Aspen of course is the name of the city in Colorado.  b) Brazil is the name of the country named after a tree   c) Dendrochronology is the method of dating trees by their growth rings  d) Linden trees are commonly called Lime  e) The Major Oak is of course in Sherwood Forest and  Robin Hood and his men are supposed to have slept under it.  It is a long time since I have told a Robin Hood story, I think I ought to rectify that!!!!!

A Thousand Trees

Well not quite but it feels like a thousand plus pieces of tree here at the moment! I chose the Stereophonics song for today’s title because it seems most of my garden time at the moment is clearing up the aftermath of the great chunk of tree coming down. I think I am winning!

I watched a full football match this afternoon for the first time since early March. It was a bit of a damp squib to be honest. At least my team avoided losing when not playing very well! It is hard without a crowd and atmosphere.

Yesterday’s Quiz on Hares

a) Masquerade by Kit Williams was the treasure hunt book   b) Drove is the collective noun for Hares   c) Jack is a male Hare  d) Jill is a female Hare  e) A White Hare is often supposed to be a witch in disguise but sometimes it is a young maiden!

Today’s Quiz is on Trees!

a) What small Colorado city founded as a mining camp was later named after an abundance of certain trees in the area?   b) Can you name the only country named after a tree?  c) What is dendrochronology ?   d) What are linden trees commonly called in the UK?  e) Possibly the most famous tree in UK “The Major Oak” is found where?