I Felt The Chill

Elvis Costello provides today’s title and I thought went well the bitter spell of weather from the weekend. I certainly had to get my Winter gear out for riding-balaclava, overshoes and warmer gloves! Milder today when we went down to Exeter to see our delightful granddaughter Ellen.

Rest of the week I need to spend learning stories for my December Gigs.

Ups and Downs!!!!!

Apologies for regular readers about the inactivity on the blog! We have  been on a Grandparent visit which was certainly an Up! We were delightfully entertained by young Owen- he will be a year old Monday week (we are up for his family party at the weekend). We have both enjoyed doing bed time story times with him – he sits on one of our laps while the other reads -his beautiful wide blue eyes and smile just makes you glow all over! On Tuesday we are visiting our granddaughter Ellen who is now two months old and looking forward to see her smile! She went swimmong for the first time with her Dad this weekend!

The downs of the weekend I shot off yesterday afternoon to watch my football team give an inept display in losing at home. Ironically three weeks ago the talk was perhaps the Hatters  getting close to the play offs now I am beginning to look nervously towards the wrong end of the table!

The other downs have been being plagued by a succession of punctures  on my Winter Road Bike  so I have just invested in more expensive tyres! watch this space to see if it was a good investment!

Action !!!!

I was in a school for the whole day yesterday the first whole day I have had since the pandemic (they have been a few half days)  a real contrast with March 2020 where I did seven whole days before lock down! So it was great to be able work across a whole school again. I was there to celebrate No Pens Day. I have a busy December coming up with four adult gigs including the Three Horseshoes on the 8th December at 8pm (all welcome).

I have been on the bike quite a bit this week including a cold but delightful ride with Clare today to Nailsworth to celebrate her birthday and lunch. First time for wearing a balaclava under the helmet! The pictures below is the Old Groynes (me and my pals) on one of our adventures  -this was our Coast to Coast ride and then  back across on the Hadrian’s Wall  Cycle Route. 

Learning Stories

Think the title should be relearning stories. Some of the stories I am telling tomorrow (near  Malmesbury)  I haven’t told for nearly two years so feeling the pressure. Hoping when Adrenalin starts to flow it all comes flooding back.

Great ride with my pals today with some great climbs.

Finally watched my team tonight in a rather dull 0-0. We sadly missed a penalty.


Bike Trouble

A frost to start the day and a hiccup! My ritual on normal days is to cycle up the Green to collect the paper. It didn’t go well first  the back wheel stuck on Shadowfax my trusty mount, so I went to Gringolet and discovered a puncture! So there were a few expletives as I grappled with the wheel with cold hands. Eventually sorted and later we had a delightful ride into Stroud along the canal. Puncture eventually sorted but I need to invest in more expensive  tyres with better protection because it has happened on a few occasions!

Winter Sunshine

Delightful beautiful morning doing yet another Winter Bird Survey (we are given a random OS square to survey) this time we were in the North of Gloucestershire near a village called Ashleworth, We always like going to new places we wouldn’t have chosen to watch birds. I have my monthly survey by the River Severn on Thursday.

Still learning stories and playing around with ideas which is keeping me busy.

Disappointed watching my football team lose yet again at Queens Park Rangers on Friday night. I think every time I’ve watched them at their venue it is always 2-0! Can you spot me in the picture below at Preston ( it was a bigger crowd shot but I was sent this screen shot!)


Cousin Jack

The title reflects last night -we went to see Show of Hands play in Cheltenham and they finished with one of their anthem songs Cousin Jack (about Cornish Miners) and I think it was one of the most emotional renditions I have heard because they haven’t been able to play live for nearly two years so were relishing every moment of performing to a live audience. Many of their songs resonated with what we all have been through since March 2020.

As a Story Teller I thrive with an audience and although I did things on line during lock down I found it restrictive to how I want to perform and react . I am in a school next week but already my whole school story “Harriet the Hippo” which I have been relearning is off the agenda because now the whole school can’t be together in the Hall. I am very fond of Harriet and would hope to get it published one day.  Still able to visit classrooms. However, I am now looking anxiously at my prospective adult gigs (3) in December.

Dan and I (The Two Severn Bores) had a good meeting on Wednesday and we are both now working on writing our songs and stories for our proposed Spring Tour. We have a theme but no title yet-watch this space!

Football tonight live on the TV . Not usually a ground the Mighty Hatters do well at- so fingers crossed our luck may change!

Two Severn Bores On The Road Again?????

I am grafting quite a bit at the moment both on re-learning stories (it has been a long time for some of my stories) as well as writing and finding stories.

I am meeting Dan tomorrow night (the other musical half of Two Severn Bores) to discuss what we might do in the Spring. I have some vague ideas that I am working on and Dan is doing the same so it will be interesting to see where we are. It has been good fun our last two projects we did together and trying to make it knit together so the stories and music merge together. The pictures below are from our 2020 “Walking the Tightrope” project-sadly a pandemic interfered with that project!


Two in One!!!

Went for both our booster jab and the flu jab Saturday morning. Have to say it is impressive seeing the organisation and the many volunteers. Slowly waiting for arms to go back to normal!

Spending time looking for new stories for the new year. I am also learning stories for a gig next week and three December gigs. On the 8th December if anyone wants to join us for one gig our Book Club are running an entertainment in the Three Horseshoes Frampton starting at 8 p.m.-I will be MC and telling at least one story!

Finally I am aware Pig the Legend sales are picking up I need to check how well we are doing. I am getting some positive feedback from people who have read it.

The Left Hand of Darkness

Today’s title is the Ursula K.Le Guin book which we discussed last night at Book Club. We have only really skirted around Science Fiction in the past so this book provoked a lively and thoughtful discussion. What I like about our Book Club is it makes me read books I wouldn’t normally choose. I did read her Wizard of Earthsea trilogy many many years ago! Next month we are doing our entertainment (including  story from you know who) in the pub after missing last year for obvious reasons. It will mean a busy month on the Story Telling front to adult audiences for me.

Had a lovely time taking the young people from Old Oak Primary birding around Wick Court yesterday. I am Story Telling for them later.

Today we went to do our final Winter Square Bird Survey in the North of the county. Sadly we were hampered by footpaths being blocked off and a stile in poor repair.