Saturday, 31 July 2010

The Knock On The Door

Saturday Centus time again! Nice short prompt this week which is nicely tucked up in the body of the story (bold & italic). Once again the rule is 100 words or less excluding the prompt, it’s amazing what you can convey in 100 words – have a look at some of the other entries!
I needed to do this. After coming so far I had to see him, I needed explanations. Just a hint as to why he dips in and out of my life the way he does. That day in the park was typical, he suddenly appears from nowhere and just as quickly disappears. Well this time I’m on his territory, there’ll be no disappearing act – he has nowhere to go. He’s already home.That's why it meant so much to make this journey. I take a big breath in and knock on the door. And wait, my heart pounding out of my chest in expectation.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Rainbow Red

No rest for the wicked! As we have finished the whole of the alphabet, Jenny has decided that we need to keep our wits sharp and has set a challenge for the next seven weeks linked to the colours of the rainbow – in order.

So obviously the first colour is red. I was going to write a convoluted  post that related to Stewart tartan so that I could enthral you all with the wonderful concert I went to last night but instead I am going to share with you my hot of the press tourist activities from today!

We stayed in London overnight and, as the car park at the hotel was paid for until 5pm, we thought we’d be tourists in our own country and we joined thousands of people at The Tower of London marvelling at the sights. Although I spent my formative years just to the north of our capital I have only ever been to the Tower once before so today John and I treated ourselves (thankfully we managed to get the seniors rate for him!) to an expensive walk around the Tower.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to give you a history lesson, if you’re interested have a click on the link above and you’ll see all you ever needed to know – and more!

So first off I spotted this soldier with his lovely bright red tunic.


Then a couple of flowers – I know one is a geranium but my mind has gone a complete blank with the other one – I’m sure somebody will tell me though!




Now this picture isn’t red at all but I’d like to share with my dear friends across the Atlantic, this picture of Tower Bridge. This is what somebody in Arizona (no not Jenny!!) thought they were buying a few years back when they imported London Bridge – brick by brick! They wanted the bridge that went up in the middle and got the wrong one – oops, expensive mistake there, especially as this one was not being replaced!


We had a lovely morning walking around, sadly my back has been bad this week and after climbing lord knows how many thousands of steps to go around the White Tower I was barely able to put one foot in front of the other so I hobbled back to the train to go pick up the car.

Before I go I just know that so many of you out there have been tantalised by the mere mention of the concert I went to last night that I promise to tell you more very soon, in the meantime, this is Stewart tartan, which as you will see is predominantly RED :)

Sunday, 25 July 2010

The Journey Home

Saturday Centus time again, and a cheeky little link this week – can you spot it?

The prompt is in bold, here we go:

Driving six hours is a long time on the road. Six hours spent singing car-aoke and taking in the picturesque scenery, but mostly reminiscing about the good times. But those days were long gone and my mind was in a different place now. Or was it? My pulse quickened as I passed the road sign which read "Medford 27 miles."

That’s Medford NJ. The place I once referred to as home but not now. Joe was prompting me for more memories from the driver’s seat as I stared through the window. He knew why I was here, the reasons that I had to come. I trusted him to keep me safe. As we turned into the street that was our destination I told him to pull up a way from the house. I had to do this by myself. He understood. It’s true, the smell of freshly mowed grass can stay with you for years, for decades.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Why I’m me

Oh heck – I’ve almost missed last weeks Saturday Centus, how did that happen??

As usual, the prompt is in italics and the rest is all my own work!

“Mama, how do we get the names we get?” I asked one hot day way back then, “ I mean what was it that made you call me Dotty?”

Mama turned and looked at me and a huge smile burst across her face. She didn’t answer straight away. Instead she found an old LP and placed it on the gramophone. From the black vinyl came the clear voice of Judy Garland “Somewhere over the rainbow”.

“That was the song they played when I first danced with your father”, she told me. With a strange, faraway look in her eyes.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Alphabet Soup

This week Jenny has mixed things up and made some suggestions for a final round up of Alphabe-Thursday. I’ve opted to re-post the one that I think caused more hilarity from you, dear reader, than any of the other posts. And that would be L is for Lycra which originally appeared back in April here.

Picture the scene. We’re just home from our wonderful holiday. Son 2 is at home to greet us. All appears normal. Until he says ‘Stay in your bedroom with the door closed until I call you’. Mmmm – he’s always been a bit unpredictable but what on earth was he up to now?

So he called from downstairs. Off I went opened the front room door to be greeted by a vision in …PURPLE LYCRA – head to toe, including covering his face. He posed like one of those living statues and didn’t say a word. Now this is where I should show you a photo but I have to be honest I laughed so much I didn’t have the sense to grab the camera! Apparently this is a ‘Morph Suit’ they seem to be quite the thing by this website here. I tell you, you had to be there to appreciate it, I’m still smiling now!

Apparently he’s off for a weekend at a Frisbee competition  - I’m not sure if this is the kit he’ll be wearing! Ahh boys will be boys, however old they are!

This is the closest I can get – just imagine it in purple!!


I did ask him if he would pose for me tonight when he came in from work, his response ‘That’ll be a no’ at least I tried!

Pop across to Jenny's blog to see the rest of this weeks contributions.

So the next seven weeks are the colours of the rainbow, will I participate? Oh, I don’t know. I’ve struggled lately to keep up – I might just have a break. But then again I might not, you’ll just have to wait and see!

Hop across and see what the others have done this week!

(By the way the blog template is probably only temporary until I can get back on to The Cutest Blog On The Block to sort it out!)

Monday, 19 July 2010

My American Experience 2010 (part 2)

Now where was I? Oh that’s right – listening to that awful football match on our way from Lincoln, Nebraska down to Neosho, Missouri!

After more miles than I care to remember and several hours later we arrived in Neosho at our ‘home from home’. Black clouds have threatened for several hours as we worked our way south and we were not disappointed to hear rumbles of thunder in the distance. Summer in Neosho is lovely except for the really high humidity – a good downpour really helps to clear the air. And that is just what we got – a good downpour for several hours! It’s amazing to sit on the front porch and watch the weather roll in.

Our time in Neosho is generally spent relaxing and shopping, Walmart is a real favourite as is the nearest mall which is in Joplin, about 30 miles away. I love Bath and Body Works. I probably spend more there than I would ever spend on soaps and stuff at home but they are just so nice! As the summer sale was on I managed to get some bargains plus a saving of $10 on $30 spend – John said we’d never get the $10 off, he was wrong. I ended up with about $70 worth for $25!!! And then there’s Hobby Lobby – I wish we had them over here in the UK! I could have so many hobbies!! I bought more yarn but I really need to get going and actually use some of it – I’m running out of storage space!

To give our hosts a break, John and I took ourselves off to a lovely place called Eureka Springs in Arkansas for an overnight stay which we spent at the Red Bud Manor Inn where we were very well looked after by the owner, Deb. She recommended good places to eat and we opted for Italian at Ermilio’s. It was absolutely delicious and the waitress was so fascinated by our accents we got very special service that evening!

136                                       146

We had a very comfortable night and a delicious breakfast on the side porch before paying for our stay. Panic. John’s wallet had an empty slot where his Visa card should be! We backtracked and remembered that the last time he had used it was the previous night – slight problem in that they only opened between 5-9pm. Deb kindly phoned and somebody was there and they confirmed that they did have the card.

A few days later we all went off for a day out of a scenic railway. The alarm went off at 5.15am as we had to be at the station for 7.30 and had an hour and a half drive! We were headed of to Van Buren, Arkansas which I’m sure is a lovely place. If it’s not raining cats and dogs. All day long. We had left home unsure of the weather as it was still quite dark but by the time we were half way there the heavens opened – we spent the day hopping (in my flip-flops) from shop to shop avoiding the puddles and trying to keep dry. I did have a lovely time in a fabric store though – and ended up feeling that I was more than able to make a quilt, after all there was a lady in the store who only started quilting four months previously and had made about six quilts now – and they were amazing. I bought some fabric. I don’t know if I’ll ever get around to using it – I am not a sewing type. Crochet – yes, cross stitch – yes (well, not lately ‘cos I can’t see so well!), knitting – yes. Sewing – well, no not really. But I do want to. Really. Anyway, I’m rambling – again!


And then of course we had July 4th! As it was a Sunday this year most celebrations were held on the Monday but we did go to fireworks in a small town called Granby – they do quite a good show for such a small place and the people watching is second to none!

190I just kept clicking until one came out better than the others! 

Thanks for sticking with me – almost done now! We always go to a show in Branson when we visit and this year we saw Jim Stafford (remember ‘Spiders and Snakes’ from the 70s?) which was a really good show.

Sadly all good things must come to an end and so we end up back at Kansas City airport for our return flight. You’ll never guess why take-off was delayed! Bloomin’ Air Force 1 had priority over us! Can you imagine, did they not know how important we were?

So we’re back in blighty, on the bus from the airport to the car park when John says ‘Where’s the small black bag?’ he’d only gone and left it on the luggage trolley! So we weighed up whether it was worth the hassle of trying to track it down. It was only books and hairbrushes. And the camera – too right we had to get it back! Almost three weeks of memories were in  that bag. And do you know? It was the easiest thing to get it back, the staff were so helpful and within an hour of discovering the loss it was back in our hands. Thank you Terminal 3 at Heathrow!

227 All those miles of interstate and freeway and then the M25 near Heathrow!!

So that’s it for a while, back to normal now work, work and more work. Never mind that’s what makes the holidays worth waiting for!!

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Z is for …

…Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah!!! Oh come on, allow me this little ,um, indulgence! Well, 26 weeks have just flown past haven’t they? It seems like only last month that we started this Alphabe-Thursday over at Jenny’s and here we are at the end.

So Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah. This was in my mind anyway for Z but while I was on holiday we went to see Jim Stafford in Branson, Missouri and he sang this! My first thought that this was from the Disney version of Pinocchio (don’t ask why!) but when I explored I found it was in fact from the Disney film ‘Song of the South’.

I think this is a really happy sing-a-long song and that’s OK by me – I can remember singing this in a Gang Show many years ago when I was about 15, so to end this great series, here it is – sing along now!!

Thanks for bearing with me through this Alphabet journey – it’s been fun! Wait and see what’s coming next!

Sunday, 11 July 2010

My American Experience 2010 (part 1)

Well, where to begin – I know at the very beginning, a very good place to start…sorry, I was getting carried away.

Our early morning flight to Chicago meant that we stayed near the airport on Sunday night – so much more civilised to get up at 4.15 and only have 15 minutes to travel than  to leave home at 2am and drive for two hours in the hope that you don’t hit any road works.

We flew American Airlines (other airlines are available but this one got us the best deal to where we needed to be) to Kansas City, Missouri, via Chicago O’Hare. I managed to stay awake (lord knows how) for the entire flight and watched three whole movies in the process – all easy on the eye and the brain and nothing too contentious. Once at Chicago we found that our connecting flight was delayed by an hour – we already had a two hour layover. I thought it would be useful to let our friends (remember them from here ?) know – hoping to catch them before they left home, too late as they were already on their way! Anyway, moving on – we found a Starbucks, had a lovely Latte and a Muffin and then found out the flight was delayed even further – please bear in mind that we have had an eight hour flight, been up stupidly early and were now in a time zone six hours behind the one we left. To say I was becoming irrational and agitated would be a terrible understatement – I wanted to climb the walls with tiredness.

When we finally arrived at Kansas City we managed to find Scott, Shirley & Emily without any difficulty – after all it’s not the biggest of airports! We’re headed off on a road trip and manage to squeeze all of our luggage into the van – poor Emily has it stacked up all around her! First night the plan is to stop at St Joseph, Missouri and we check in to a Ramada hotel for the night. Scott always likes to ask the locals where to eat and we’re directed top a local Cajun restaurant – I haven’t got a clue what it was called because I didn’t write it down, I remember that I had Talapia to eat but other than that I have no recollection. I was tired, my feet were twice their normal size and hurting like mad.

Day two saw us heading off to Sioux Falls in South Dakota but first Scott decided to introduce John to the world of geocaching – if you feel the need to know more please take a look, I am not going to give them the satisfaction don’t understand enough about it to elaborate!

This was to be a very informative trip and we started off going around St Joseph’s Pony Express Museum, yes siree, this was the birthplace of the Pony Express. They also have a museum of psychiatry! Now that was unusual!

At 3pm we started the journey to Sioux Falls. I slept for about two hours and there is photographic evidence that my mouth fell open. However I did not snore or drool!

We arrived in Sioux Falls at 8pm and again Scott asked for a recommendation for food. This time the receptionist suggested a picnic at the Falls to see the sound and light show – so Subway it was!! We took our picnic and sat up at the falls and let the mosquitoes picnic on us while we sat through the show – it wasn’t until the end that we realised we were almost the only people there as everybody else had obviously got fed up with being eaten alive! Now I expect your looking for me to show you photos of the Falls aren’t you? Well, guess what – I left the camera behind in the hotel, I took a few on the phone but they didn’t come out at all well.

The next morning we had time to watch a little of the World Cup game between England & Slovenia before setting off on the final leg of our journey to Rapid City, South Dakota – some 300+ miles.

Scott has this knack of learning about unusual places so on the way we stop in Mitchell to visit the worlds only Corn Palace, all puns intended we thought this would be a really corny place but it was surprisingly interesting.

011 The exterior decorated with various parts of the corn – we watched the local craftsmen cutting the corn for this years decoration.


Now this was corny – his name is Cornelius!

Back in the van we head off across miles and miles of, well, nothing-ness. Just great plains of crops and the odd property scattered here and there.

Another ‘must stop’ place was the Badlands National Park, which was spectacular – just cast your mind back to all those old westerns with the cowboys & Indians hiding amongst huge rocks and ravines. There was a trail to walk down but this poor old girl couldn’t get down because of the stupid swollen feet thing that was still going on :(



030039 There were several of these cute little guys – prairie dogs!

For the last couple of days we’ve been seeing signs for ‘Wall Drug’. Hundreds of them. All different. All intriguing. Well we just had to pay a visit didn’t we?

How can I describe it without causing any offence…I probably can’t but take a look here to form your own opinion! They must spend a fortune in advertising…


Well – what can I say!

We continued on to Rapid City and arrived at our accommodation after dinner at Applebees and shopping at Walmart.


The next day took us off to Mount Rushmore. Which was AMAZING. Let the photo’s do the talking…





Next day it’s off to Deadwood, and yes, I know you now have the image of Doris Day as Calamity Jane singing her heart out in the movie! Wild Bill Hicock was assassinated in a casino here and is buried in Mount Moriah cemetery.

085 100102

After a quick dash across the state line to Wyoming – just to say we’d been there – we went back to the accommodation for our last night before we head back to Neosho for the rest of our holiday, this was to be over two days and clocked up over 700 miles going via Lincoln, Nebraska en route. We also managed to listen to the second half of the England v Germany World Cup game – enough said on that matter I think!

I’ve just had a quick preview of this and it’s already waaaaayyyyy to long so I’m going to stop now and leave you wanting more (isn’t that what you’re supposed to do??). Plus I’m tired and have to get my going back to work head on for tomorrow and the World Cup Final is on soon and I still need to put the clean bed linen on and I haven’t hooked since last Wednesday (more of that soon :)) and oh, I don’t know, it’s getting sort of stormy here and I just need to stop – OK?

Thanks for making it this far if you have

Saturday, 10 July 2010

The beginning

Slightly different spin this week to celebrate Saturday Centus number 10 – we’re allowed 200 words, whoo, hoo!! But it has to be on a romantic theme.

I know I haven’t been around for a couple of weeks and I haven’t looked back at the prompts I missed – deliberately so as not to kick myself if I missed an opportunity!

Anyhow, onwards. I hope this completes a little more of ‘my’ story. Remember – the ‘I’ is not me – it’s totally fictitious! The prompt is in bold as usual.

The other entries are here

The party was in full swing by the time I entered the room, I darted in between the guests as discreetly as I could, trying not to draw too much attention to myself. There was a wonderful cacophony of noise surrounding me but I managed to hear a very distinct ‘Ahem’. When I turned around I was startled to meet a green-eyed gaze which completed a perfect face. My heart raced and my breath became short, I could feel my face warming, knowing the resultant colour would give away my feelings. ‘Would you care for some air, you seem rather, umm warm’ The voice was velvet perfection.

He took my elbow and gently led me outside to the cool late summer breeze, I knew I shouldn’t even be there. Certainly shouldn’t be alone with him and his reputation, I wondered why he had picked me out. Was it because he knew I shouldn’t be there? Was I a challenge? Another conquest to make? Before I knew what was happening I was in his arms, powerless to resist the pull of his lips to mine. I knew it was wrong. But it felt right. I didn’t tell him about you until you were two years old. We were fine, you and I. We didn’t need him.

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Y is for…

…Y, a whole lot of words courtesy of The Phrontistery

Yaffingale – a green woodpecker

Yapok - an amphibious opossum of South America

yarmulke - skullcap worn by Orthodox Jewish men (I’ve always wondered what they were called!)


Yelek - outer garment worn by Turkish women

Ok – not very inspired from a personal point of view but I wonder what everybody else has done over at Jenny's (as this auto posts I shall be flying high across the Atlantic on my way home *sniff, sniff*)

:::::Hopefully normal service is now resumed and I should be able to go visiting over the weekend!!:::::