Friday, 18 December 2009

Snow In London, part 2

This is the view from my craft room, you can just see the O2, which was in fact the millennium dome. As I said one inch of snow and London comes to a standstill.
Francis (with an i) left for work and as he had moved his car off our hill and onto the major bus route he was in fact able to get out to the main roads, but he never made it to the M25.
The main A20 out to the M25 was fairly bad, but when he got to the slip road for the M25, the snow and ice where piled up and he wisely thought it a bad idea. So he headed home.
I was pleased to see him, he really hasn't had to drive in that sort of weather before, so I was a little concerned. Seriously don't like being in it myself and I've been driving for 30yrs.
We are just not geared up in this country for a snowflake to fall on a road, never mind an inch of the stuff.

When the kids were small, we lived in rural Spain, up in the mountains and got serious snow there, yet I never remember having any trouble with getting down the mountain or back up for that matter. Goodness knows how we are going to cope in London when globe warming makes winters worse!!!!!!

This is my car, taken from the craft room, as you can see there is the tiniest amount of snow on it, yet there's no way I could get it off the hill. Just take a look up and down the hill.

If you follow the car tracks you can see that one of the neighbors actually slid into the spot the car is stop at. It has been funny watching the cars slide down the hill, they go all over the place.
All the cars at the top of the hill will be stuck there till the snow goes. Which is why there are so many of them up there. You can't see them all but there are 5 stuck up there, due to the fact that the hill gets steeper up there as the hill goes round yet another bend, then rises again.
The snow is now compacted and as a result it has turned to ice, making it even harder to drive.

I use to get the family out and we would use the salt and grit on the road to clear it, but it got to the point where it was just us doing it and I thought to hell with it! We had done it for over 10yrs.
Why should we be the only ones out there getting the road ready for others. So I began to move the car on to the bus route and walk to it. Do you know the neighbors had the cheek to moan about us not doing it. What a nerve! I simply refuse to do the hill anymore for the benefit of people who don't help and then moan. Last time we did it was 3yrs ago and since we stopped no-one else has even bothered and the grit bin has been empty for over 2yrs now.
It's not that we minded doing it, it was more the expectation that no one else needed to do, as we would.

So I do find it highly amusing that people can't get off the hill and that most of the neighbors now see a flake of snow fall and run to their cars to move them, so they can go about their business.
Perhaps they should have been more grateful, either that or got on a shovel!!!!!!

Another thing I have seen today is a lot of people walking up or down the hill and one thing that really stands out is the amount of women walking with their men folk and yet the women are the ones either pushing a buggy or carrying heavy shopping.
Now what is all that about!
My mother said once that I was a born feminist. Might have something to do with being the only girl and the way was I going to wait hand and foot on that lot, way too out numbered. (My adopted sister E didn't come along till I was a teenager)
But I have to say that despite being a feminist to my core, I am never expected to carry heavy bags nor would I be the one to push a buggy in bad weather.
But then maybe that's because in my family the men are Gentlemen.
What sort of men let women carry the heavy shopping on icy roads and pavements??????
Feminist or not, I still like to be treated like a lady, even thought there isn't a man in my family that doesn't know what I am capable of. Even if I am clothes shopping my brothers, partner and boys, never let me carry the shopping....are we odd or just a little old fashioned?????
Either way, I like it.

I can hear all my American friends laughing, as we really don't know what snow is here.
My British friends will know exactly what I mean, by one snow flake and the country stops.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Snow In London.

It's snowing in London!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I know that's not big news to my American friends who are more than knee deep in the lovely white stuff.

But it's snowing in London!!!!!!!!

Off course I won't be allowed out in it, have already been told by the family that I must stay in after falling over so many times i February and badly bruising my head and hip.

But I don't care it's snowing in London and it's the first time it has snowed in London in December since 1986....we might get a white Christmas.

Mind you there is only about 1/2inch at the moment and Francis (with an i) has just had to move his car off our hill as the gritters can't or rather won't come down our hill. So that means if he is to go to work in the morning he simply must put the car on a bus route, they have to keep them clear.

Off course, when the snow gets to 1 inch deep the whole of London will grind to a halt, just like it did in February.
But I don't care, it's snowing in London and it's going to look beautiful.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Sleeping Beauty.

Hello Everyone,

Not much to say today. Due to the fact that I have spent most of the day sleeping.
I got up early, but soon found that the day was going to be too much for me to cope with.
So taking the good advice I have been given about this stupid illness of mine, I retreated to my bed chamber.
Where I watched day time T.V and fell asleep.

Francis (with an i) got home about 5ish and said he'd do dinner. So the men had burgers and chips, "Man food" according to them, that and it's about all they could be bothered with.
A vegetable won't pass their lips if I totally left them to get their own dinners. Unless you count tomato ketchup as a vegetable, which they do and remind them that no one likes a smart a???
I also like to remind them that tomato is actually a fruit!!!!!!

It's weird this going to bed during the day, but I have been warned to listen to my body and do what it needs, so I'm going too.

I can't do ill, that's for sick people. But then I am sick, just don't want to be.
The specialist told me that I need to give myself permission to be sick and that it's not a race I can win, but that I'm not a loser if I just lay down for a while.
She believes that the fact, that I have worked so hard and not let my body rest when ill for all those years is the reason I have Fibromyalgia.

Okay so I get that, but I had 3 kids to rear and that means money. I can't do social security. I'll be darned if I'll go there. Besides what was I meant to do. Sit at home, have nothing, never show the kids a better way of life and that if you want something you work for it.
That wasn't an option as far as I was concerned. Besides being self employed, while it had it's compensations, it also meant no work, no money, again not an option with a one wage family.
It's not as though I coulds pay myself sick pay.

Maybe I did work myself into this illness, but I'm not going to walk away from this easily unless I do what needs to be done. I always thought hard work never killed anyone, but it sure as hell can make you ill.
It drives me mad that so many (normally) fathers get to walk away scott free. I have never had a penny for the kids from their father and despite the authorities trying to find him to make him pay up and do his duty by his off spring, kids he also wanted, he managed to shake them off and disappear to Spain. An E.U country that the authorities said they couldn't track him down in, although we gave them his new name and address.

So really while it was fine in many ways for the specialist to sit there and say I had almost brought this upon myself I'm really not sure what else I would have done differently OR for that matter that I would have wanted too.

So from here on in my job is to get as well as I can and do the best I can, even if that means sleeping all day sometimes. Tomorrow is another day.

And as my friend Shaddy pointed out on her blog Here there's no point in sweating the small stuff. I really don't have to now that the kids are grown, one has left the nest and the beautiful one with an i, is in my life. Besides I want to be well for Christmas.

EDIT:- did I say I didn't have much to say!!!!!!!! clearly I was wrong??????

Monday, 14 December 2009

Warning!!!!! A poem by Jenny Joseph

I was reminded today of a poem I like, so I thought I would share it with you as it is a long time since I posted any poetry and I thought you might enjoy it.

Warning - When I Am an Old Woman I Shall Wear Purple

By Jenny Joseph

When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple

with a red hat that doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.

And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves

and satin candles, and say we've no money for butter.

I shall sit down on the pavement when I am tired

and gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells

and run my stick along the public railings

and make up for the sobriety of my youth.

I shall go out in my slippers in the rain

and pick the flowers in other people's gardens

and learn to spit.

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat

and eat three pounds of sausages at a go

or only bread and pickles for a week

and hoard pens and pencils and beer nuts and things in boxes.

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry

and pay our rent and not swear in the street

and set a good example for the children.

We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practice a little now?

So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised

When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

I'd like to add that not only am I going to wear purple (actually I'm wearing purple now) but I'm going to rent a cottage by the sea, get loads of cats and wonder round the town mumbling under my breath about the price of bacon and how things weren't like this in my day.

This poem is Internationally known and a whole society has sprung up around this little poem, called the Red Hat Society, for those of you who are unfamiliar with this here's a link for you HERE

Mondays and the Universe!!!!

Hello Everyone,

I have decided that I don't like Mondays! At lest this Monday anyway!

Woke up cold and alone, the beautiful one having left for work not wanting to disturb my sleep, ah bless. But it was most odd. You see most mornings I wake with the lovely Francis (with an i), I may not always get up when he does, as sometimes it's as early as 5am and now I don't have to get up at "stupid o'clock in the middle of the night" it's a real joy to go back to sleep, but we always have a cuddle and a kiss, so it was odd to wake up alone with no kiss.
The house was cold, as I had forgot to reset the heating timer and had somehow turned it off.
So there I am alone, cold and in the dark. Very odd way to start the day, totally not normal.
I checked the clock, only 7:28am, something is not right, way to quiet and rather spooky.
So I padded downstairs, to get a hot drink, put the heating on and call the sons up to start their day.

I found oldest son Ashley, sitting at the PC in the dinning room, sitting in the dark. He's due to go on a course for 13 weeks, long story, but he lost his job about 18months ago, at first we didn't worry as we thought it wouldn't be long before he was back at work, but then the credit crunch started to hit London and his line of work was harder to come by. He hates construction work and although he will and has gone to work with me, it's not really his "thing".
Anyway now the job center are sending him on a 13 week course and it is a bit far away and as I was going that way to the doctors today, I was going to offer a lift.

That was until I spoke to him and he chewed my head off. Ashley is the quiet, deep thinking one in the family and is also the one with the best manners, in fact they are impeccable, something I am very proud of. Only he didn't use them this morning, instead deciding that being rude to mother was a good idea, not when I'm cold, in pain and barely awake it's not.

Next thing I know I'm in a massive row with the one person in the house I don't row with!!!!!!
Harsh words were said, both of us, I'm not blameless in this. We had managed to wake up Callum and when Ashley went back to their room, he moaned about me, which then led to a row between those two, again an unusual event.
Ashley stormed out the house, to go to his course with not a word of good-bye! Very odd

I got myself together and headed for my car, only to find it boxed in by the hated neighbors. I had only about 4inches between the cars to get out, so I did, while they stood at their door watching and laughing. If nothing else those people have taught me how to park and get out again. When I got back, I parked it in the same place, I will not be bullied by those people.

Once I hit the main road I knew that I should have left a bit earlier. How long do you think it should take to go 7miles in London at 8:10am!!!!!!!!.....well now triple it and you are about right.
I crawled to my sisters, as she always goes with me, bless her.
Picked her up and crawled the 3miles to the doctors for my 9:30 appointment , it was now 9:28am...!hour and 18mins to go 7miles!!!!!!!!! I should have jogged it lol.
The doctors was good, we are all pleased with my progress so far. I have lost 11lbs, just by changing my diet a little and I am feeling a lot better. She sorted out my meds and I was on my way. Dropped my sister off and headed for home. The day was starting to look up.

By now the school run was well over the rush hours a dim and distant memory. (I say HOURS, as it starts here about 6am and goes on till 10am and that's on a good day!)
Never took into account the mad Christmas shoppers.
You'd think a nuclear bomb was about to drop on London. The amount of people out there driving badly and being rude was amazing today.
At one point there was a row in the road with men yelling at each other and using colorful words to describe each other. Some woman got involved, didn't they know they were stopping traffic and that she had shopping to do, the 2 men turned on her, then another woman in another car got involved. Horns were blaring, and I was looking for the pop-corn vendor. Another driver fed-up mounted the pavement and tried to force a bunch of teenagers out the way.
Now London teenagers are not to be messed with, they are streetwise, know their rights, quick to temper and aren't afraid to use them....or is that just ALL Londoners!!!
they have mobiles.....lots of them and can call for back-up faster than the Metropolitan Police, as well as getting a faster response time.

Yet more madness ensued, all around me teenagers poured into the road, drivers were getting more irate. I was sitting there thinking that it was like a scene from that film "It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world"

There's a postman with a trolley, who can't get past for the teenagers and the car, an old man with a walking stick waving it around and a few mums with buggies, a row in the road another on the pavement and madness all around......not a copper in sight.
I caught the eye of a teenager and he smiled at me and gesture that it was madness, I laughed.
What can you do, it's just the madness of Monday. Eventually things calmed and the pavement driver move his car back off the pavement. Two boys cleared the way for the old man, the postman and the mums to pass the teenagers and some girls went over to the rowing drivers and calmed them down, saying that it was a bad example of adult behavior in front of the teenagers; and how were they ever to learn how to behave if adults didn't show them, they got back in their respective cars and another boy got the traffic to move and we were on our way again.

I looked to left and saw the boy who gestured towards me. We smiled at each other and laughed and he pointed upwards, there shining bright in the sky was a massive rainbow. I heard him shout and looked again and he was shrugging and saying "Mondays, never normal" while shaking his head.

Like I said London teenagers are streetwise, know their rights, are quick to temper and aren't afraid. We so called grown ups don't always see them as we should.
I'm thinking that they should move into banking next and maybe we could all get back to normal.

I finally got in at 11:35, only and 1hr and half to go 7miles!!!!!!!!!

By the way while I have been typing this, Ashley has phoned me, it went like this:-

Ashley: Mum!
Me: Can I help you?
A: Phoned to say sorry about this morning.
M: I'm glad to hear it.
A: I was a bit cranky this morning!
M: Only a bit..(laughing)
A: Yeah just a tad, shouldn't have taken it out on you, but I didn't sleep well. Sorry.
M: Well are you ok now?
A: I'm awake now (laughing)
M: How's it going?
A: Not bad! Are we ok mum?
M: Off course we are you cranky little git!
A: Ah! I see you still love me then!
M: Always, see you when you get home.
A: Ok mum,bye, love you.
M: Love you too son.

I have a theory about Mondays....... the Universe sends them to us, so that we can appreciate Tuesdays, Wednesday, etc etc........other wise how else are we expected to get through the week, in order to enjoy the weekend.

I'm home now, back in my squashed up car parking space and I'm NOT leaving the house again till Wednesday and after rush hour!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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