Old Man Take A Look At My Life………

Taking the Neil Young song for my title today in light of my significant birthday! I am now the Old Man! Just listened to it!

I was Story Telling in Longlevens Library this afternoon- rather short on an audience hoping for a few more for the two gigs tomorrow.

I also popped into Stroud this morning with Clare on our bikes- the canal path was rather mucky! Really enjoyed the Autumn Colours on the way- think I will try and take some pictures this week. Some pictures below I took three years ago.


Over The Hill????

Well I did reach a significant age yesterday! I had a wonderful day with lots of lovely messages, cards and presents. I spent the day with my lovely grandsons (and their parents and of course Clare) going for a smashing walk on Rodborough Common followed by an ice-cream of course. We then adjourned to Stroud Brewery for lunch and of course a beer or two. It was followed by playing and tea and birthday cake at our house.

Today we shot up to Birmingham to watch the Mighty Hatters at Villa Park. Sadly it was no birthday treat for me as we were well and truly beaten. I think they were the best footballing side I have seen this season and it was the first time we have been completely outplayed.

A busy week ahead on the Story Telling front.

Birds, Stories, Bikes and Stuff

It has been a busy few days since we got back from a delightful weekend in Dorset with all the family. It has been a couple of Story Telling gigs although a couple have been cancelled.

I did my regular day at Wick Court on Wednesday and my self and the young people were treated to a squadron of Pintail in V formation flying over and a “desert” of Lapwings. We also had a pair of Stonechats (having never had them at Wick Court before last week and now two weeks running we have seen them!) Yesterday I did the monthly survey out by the river- highlights were 4 Jack Snipe, Curlew, Knot, Marsh Harrier, Stonechat and my first Fieldfare of this Autumn.

Deepest Dorset

Apologies for lack of blogs over the weekend but we have been away celebrating my youngest son Peter’s birthday. It was a significant one which makes me feel incredibly old! Wonderful weekend with all our family in a superb old farmhouse in Dorset that even had a swimming pool. It was great to see all three of our delightful grandchildren who thoroughly enjoyed themselves and the two oldest Owen who will be 3 in December and Ellen just turned 2 were incorrigible together! So we are now tired out and back in Frampton!

I am off for the first of my Halloween gigs at Matson Library soon.

Great result for the Mighty Hatters on Saturday after being two down!

A Pleasant Surprise!!!


Had a Wick Court first with young people from Cambridge a Stonechat! Although I see them often in Winter near the river near where i live we have never had one spotted before at Wick Court. Even better one group with me all manged to see the bird through my telescope. We were lucky with the rain it didn’t start till I was riding home so got the soaked at the end.  I am Story Telling with the young people this evening.

The Two Severn Bores had a rehearsal last night going over our Destiny or Fate show- we are performing it a couple of times in November. We needed it we were rusty!


The Old Oak

Apologies I mentioned yesterday we were going to see the latest Ken Loach film. It is called The Old Oak not Oak as I put yesterday!

Typical Loach film although unlike many of his films I thought it ended with hope. Powerful as always tackling racism and disadvantaged communities. Certainly well worth watching.

Currently playing with my new garmin for bike (an early birthday present). Not sure it will make me pedal any faster!

Notice I didn’t mention the cricket result oh my goodness how disappointing!

Working hard at learning stories!


Today’s title is not about that mighty tree that can have up to 270 species of life on it. I do know some wonderful Oak Trees in our area none more magnificent than the 700 year old tree at Wick Court (it is hollow on the inside and I often let young people go inside). No we are off to watch the latest Ken Loach film called Oak tonight. His films are always provocative and make you think.

I spend this morning demolishing our rotting garden shed. I now have a pile of wood! The new one comes next week. I am exhausted by my efforts!

Working hard on the stories for next week’s gig. I am playing around with music to accompany the stories.

World Cups

Both the rugby and cricket World Cups are on at the moment and I watched my first game of the rugby World Cup yesterday Ireland v New Zealand and what a cracker to watch! I have been dipping in and out of the cricket disappointed that the India – Pakistan was a damp squib!

Just had a lovely walk around the lake here in Frampton and saw the Osprey again it has been here now for three weeks! I had thought it would be gone by now but there is plenty of food for it here!

We are off to the Literature Festival later and on to see our our delightful Grandsons afterwards.

Cycling to Literature Festival

I decided yesterday that I wouldn’t drive to Cheltenham for the Festival event I was attending so I cycled there-it saves all the parking faff! My round trip was 43 miles including going up Leckhampton Hill on the way back – the bonus was flying down the Slad Valley at 35 mph not quite like Laurie Lee’s Mother in Cider with Rosie! After that I thought I would give cycling a miss when I went to Wick Court for my Story Telling!

Talking of Story Telling I have a number of gigs at Gloucestershire Libraries coming up around Halloween for audiences of 9+ but there are two adult ones as well. Hope you or a young person you know can make one of them. All events are on the Gloucester Library Web Site with details of how to book but here are the dates

23rd – Matson – 4.45p.m.   9+     Tues 24th – Tuffley – 6pm  adults      Fri 27th Up Hatherley – 5.30 pm adults    Mon 30th – Longlevens 3 pm 9+                                     Tues 31st Wotton 11 am 9+    Dursley 2pm 9+

Finally a picture to make you smile a Shoveler Duck I photographed recently!





Lovely moment today with the young people from the Charles Dickens School Southwark while bird watching. We saw many Summer Migrants (Swallows and House Martins) flying over obviously on the migration South and at the same time a flock of Winter Migrants (Redwings) arrived. Love it when the two migrations merge like that!  We also saw a Parcel of Linnets!!! Had some great questions from the young people. I am telling stories to the young people tomorrow night.