Thursday, 31 December 2015

Christmas presents


On Boxing Day, we exchange Boxing Day presents. These are generally of a more lighthearted nature than the main Christmas Day presents.

This year we bought W. a present which, once assembled, inflated,  and correctly ballasted, and the radio control mastered, provided much amusement.

video



It is now New Year's Eve and the family have departed but I am still left with the helium filled monster which floats round the house in ghostly fashion, often impeding my movement from room to room and frightening the life out of me.


I am awaiting his collection now by daughter High Horse because I reckon Shark is going to feature at the New Year's Eve party at Arnside Sailing Club tonight which my offspring will be attending.


Yesterday I caught him halfway out of the front door making a bid for freedom.

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CHRISTMAS DAY



Which one next?



All those expensive presents and a liquorice allsort wins the day

Lakeland wilderness

My friend J (bowlandclimber) who comments frequently here is launched on visiting the hills in Wainwright's "The Outlying Fells". I have owned the book for years and regard it as Wainwright's best.  In my younger years it provided the basis for six mile runs on the hills, and the book is filled with many of W's quirky comments, for example, the Woodland Fell chapter:

"The road to the north forks in 350yds beyond a postbox (where the author posted his 1972/3 tax return)..."

W describes the book:

"being a Pictorial Guide to the lesser fells around the perimeter of Lakeland written primarily for old age pensioners and others who can no longer climb high fells but can still, within reason, potter about on the short easy slopes and summits of the foothills"

and:

"...physical and other disabilities may develop in later years. Bodily ailments may occur in spite of healthy exercise: legs tend to become rickety and bones brittle; or half a century of pipe smoking may play havoc with the wind; or a street accident may curtail freedom to walk  and climb in comfort; or over-indulgence in sexual activities may have robbed the limbs of energy (perish the thought, but it had to be mentioned), Or domestic difficulties, an unsympathetic family or a shortage of cash in old age  may rule out the longer expeditions. Senile decay may set in but is unlikely in a seasoned fell walker. Rigor mortis is the one great disability to fear, and avoid as long as possible".

All use of punctuation and caps as per W.

Our target today was the Potter Fell chapter, and I was recruited because I suspect J had read W's advice: "North is a wilderness... a no-man's-wasteland. Therefore it behoves a walker subject to sudden maladies to endure a companion on this expedition, however solitary he may be by nature".

Well, for me J is the ideal companion. Any potential adversity is regarded as a worthwhile challenge, and he is always the first to see a glimmer of blue sky, and when the going gets really tough his amusement and laughter just increase.

J has written an excellent account of the walk and I do not wish to repeat the anecdotal content again which was surprisingly fruitful in view of the remoteness; there is a potential problem of creating two almost identical posts when walking with a fellow blogger, hence my reason for focusing here more on the background:
 https://bowlandclimber.wordpress.com/2015/12/30/pottering-on-the-fells/

Suffice to say that although short in distance this walk incorporated some wild, and often pathless, and rarely visited  terrain with a really remote feeling - as good a walk as I have done for some time, and just what was needed after the festive season incarceration. Thanks J.

Catching a burst of sunlight on the distant fell

The flooded Winster valley and Arnside Knott across the bay - my house nestles there somewhere

The ridge between Longsleddale and Kentmere illustrating the wilderness nature of our walk. The next photo shows the southern end of that ridge and reveals the view up Longsleddale

Looking up Longsleddale from Ulgrave's cairn

This steep view with a full on 3D effect down into the lower end of Longsleddale appears suddenly and impressively as one arrives within just a few feet of Ulgrave's cairn and combined with the view up Longsleddale provides a touch of drama to this excellent round.
Gurnal Dubs - I have done many paintings with Photoshop on the computer and this was one I tried but never finished- I just couldn't seem to capture it the way I wanted - below is the abandoned attempt.



I could not get rid of the space at the end of this post.












Saturday, 19 December 2015

He's "been" already

I can't believe it is ten days since my last post on 8th December. I have been  busy with the new WC installation upstairs, and also some extra Katie minding sessions covering for High Horse's after school activities.

Pete and I did manage a wettish walk on Thursday 10th December, but this Thursday 17th it rained all day and we drove to B&Q at Lancaster to pick up the final bathroom fittings for my project and then we were off to the Christmas gathering at Pete's wife Liz's art class.

Wet walking with Pete - reflections under the M6 


Twas Speech Day, or something similar for High Horse, so I had to look after K until  7:00pm - she had a long day and fell asleep like this about 5:45 watching C Beebies - I ended up with severe pins and needles in my arm by the time HH arrived

My finished throne room

Merry Christmas everyone - he doesn't come down the chimney at my house

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Bad weather induces expensive diversions

It is nearly a week since my last Thursday "walk" with Pete. Weather and a new DIY project have delayed a post.

Non-stop rain prevented walking, but I had the idea of visiting Force Mills where a dramatic little stream bifurcates and tumbles down a hillside in the archetypal Lake District hinterland twixt Windermere and Coniston lakes. I reckoned it would be verging on uniquely spectacular with the nonstop downpour.

Photographing the stream from below is fraught with disappointing results because the camera just cannot capture what the eye sees here but we drove to the top where the water tumbles over the edge and got a few decent shots at the risk of writing off the camera with rain ingress. I wish I had experimented and used manual override to increase shutter speed and thereby sharpen up the fast flowing water, but at least I have a reasonable record.

My dormer bungalow has a landing between the two bedrooms with walk-in storage cupboards with sloping roofs on either side. I am installing in one of these a bijou WC and handbasin facility so that my nighttime geriatric requirements will be ameliorated.

Awful picture (rain on the lens - my excuse),  but it shows the two streams. The next ones are taken from the top before it flows down. CLICK TO ENLARGE
Where the main straem goes over the edge


This and the next two - looking upstream




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The WC and handbasin are going in the left hand side. The chipboard floor was not level so I had to create a new level floor.

You can see how much out of level the floor was near the torch light - it is propped up a couple of inches or so within an 80cm. spread


Plywood floor and Vinyl tiles have now been added

Downlighter lights have been added, there are two more in the roof at the top of the photo.
The WC will back up onto the rear wall. The walls will be cladded in upvc cladding.

Phil the plumber has just arrived and I have to go for a pre knee op appointment at the hospital at 2:00pm. When I had the other knee done, the time between the pre-op appointment and the real thing was so long I questioned the point of the pre-op thing, but we will see.