Arcticterntalk.org

The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the month “July, 2011”

Lizard without a tail


This was a few months ago. I tried to catch a lizard that came into the flat thinking I was being helpful. All I managed to do was pull the end of its tail off which it seems is an escaping manoevre. Anyway this might or might not be the lizard in question!

Saturdays are back to normal


Football has returned. Went to a Brentford friendly today away at Aldershot. Crowd not bad for a friendly about 1300 with 250 Bees fans there. I like Aldershot as they dont try and stop me taking my photographs. Brentford look like a decent team this season, and in fact the existing players, O’connor, Bean etc are the ones that look poor. We have a loanee from Celtic with thousands of followers on Twitter, we are assessing some French player from FC Lens, we have a great centre back from some German side……… and so on. Bees won the game 2-1. Maybe the most one sided game I have ever seen. Have posted a few photos to keep you amused but try looking at the penalty photo with Richard Lee going the wrong way!
Other than that weather lovely here in UK, back to T shirts. Hedgepig is starting to be more friendly, houdini is on form, but some horrid animal in the night knocked down and broke a Sunflower I have been growing. It has been a good year though for Sunflowers and we have 3 heads harvested with seeds already……..so have planted another.
Elena was delighted as our potatoes have grown, not many ( and have cost a fortune, could have bought about 40kg from Co-Op for what our little tubers cost.
I did realise something sad today though…….. the NHS will try and pay me my pension in less than 2 more years……must be getting old. But looking forward to eating the food harvested from the garden tomorrow, when Charles comes over. Potatoes,Strawberries and Rocket…..
On the down isde, the young foxes are causing havoc, stealing all sorts of things in the garden like trowels etc and so noisy.

Northumberland


Arctic Tern. Dinner in beak

So much news to update that it is difficult to know where to start, so will work backwards over last 2 weeks.
Just back from a week away, mixture of work and holiday. Was up in Harrogate for a psychiatric congress that is always good fun. Get to meet colleagues and do some work and have a few drinks…………however there is a good chance that I halved the average age in Harrogate. I came down for breakfast the first morning and it seemed the whole world had gone grey overnight. Some great little snippets of conversation like a lady asking another, using the same intonation as you might ask ” more tea vicar?”…………asking ” more medication dear?”……
I travelled up by train which was actually quite fun. The train from Kings Cross was packed even on a sunday and allegedly was going all the way to Inverness,8 hours worth of train. In fact at its first stop, York, which suited me as that was where I was getting off, they said “all change”! Cue, grumblings and moaning…..
The next train a cross country train to Harrogate, actually looked like, sounded like and was about the size of a bus. It also went to stations that sounded like they came straight out of Camberwell Green. Try Poppleton,Starbecks………
Anyway Harrogate was lovely, weather warmish and the congress was really good. All against my iniitial expecatations. Took a little trip to Brimham Rocks, an amazing place where one climbs over these prehistoric looking rock formations. Some of the children there was performing death defying leaps between rocks with no parents in site…….I took Tea at Betty’s, an old fashioned tea shop, where the waitresses all look like they came from Upstairs Downstairs or a Jane Austen novel. Tea and cakes are nice, really nice, but not cheap and one might want to remove a few noughts from the bill. Then up to Newcastle way and that allowed a last trip of the year over to the Farne Islands. All the birds had gone really with only a few stragglers left. Saw 2 puffins on Inner Farne Island and they have stopped landing on Staple Island as all the birds have gone. The Arctic Terns were even good natured, or as good natured as they will ever get. The news from there is that they have had 36,000 pairs of breeding puffins this year, same as last year, one pair of swallows (?) and 9 pairs of Mallards…………
Drove back down this afternoon. A mere 350 miles on a friday evening, meeting lots of roadworks and traffic. Took around 7 hours of driving.
Brentford have continued to do well in all their friendlies, beating two non-league teams away 10-0 and 6-1, beating Stoke at home 1-0 and drawing 0-0 with Watford. This is so encouraging that I am going to see Aldershot v Brentford friendly tomorrow! So some photos may appear…….
the only bad news was that arrived home to find that someone is trying to sue Yasmin for an accident in 2006. Yasmin was stationary when hit from behind and shunted forward to hit the car in front. It seems that a little creativity has been applied to this story and a claim for almost 3K. Hmmm…….will be an interesting court case if it ever reaches there. Will take advice from eldest most-legal daughter, who has been out-argiung me for almost 30 years. And a law degree as well……

Saturday Morning


At last the rain has come here. It was getting really humid and muggy. Paperboy got his own back for me frightening him the other week. Papers dropped through letter box at 7.45 and I thought it was postman knocking with special delivery tickets, awaited for Pete Doherty…….assuming he can keep out of jail until 23rd Sept………but he did look like a drowned rat. Am off to Spain tonight on the lovely easyjet. All the restrictions they put about case size etc, how on earth do they think we know the mm size of each case?

Her Majestrys Theatre London


Made up with make up

Usually it is home to Phantom of the opera. A real old fashioned theatre. Last sunday it was home to the Childrens Variety Show and packed. Elena- the 10 yr old – was in two acts with her Stagecoach group. One dancing and the other singing. It was magical to see a little one on stage, loving it, looking as calm as anything. Amazing night. In fact there were in total 20 acts and they ranged from good to utterly brilliant. Mostly they were groups of around 20 children but one act from Birmingham, had 91 on stage………..That lot did songs from Wicked first. Now I saw wicked and was underwhelemd but these children brought it to life. They then did Firework, the song, that everyone knows.
One of the best evenings for a long time.
Monday and tuesday, back to reality………….6 am work………….no more to be said.
Hedgepig is trying to be a little more sociable. Less reversing, less prickling and far less chuffing. He also is storing his food in his new bed, a blue slipper. Neighbours came round tonight to collect daughter who had been playing with Elena. Cue, whole family upstairs to the Zoo!!
The news here is all about the News of the World and their awful phone hacking. Stories emerge daily about something repulsive they are alleged to have done. It is not an impossible scenario that the Times,Sun and Sunday times, will all close if this gets much worse.

Saturday Lazy Day


So nice to have nothing to do today. just preparing for elena going to london tomorrow to do her dancing and singing at Her Majesty’s theatre, sunday evening. Like last year. she is not phased at all by being on stage in front of a packed theatre. Seems strange that she needs to have make up and things for a 10 yr old. growing up fast!

News of the World


I dont know if you get any news in Mexico but the news here is all about the phone hacking that has been uncovered by the NOTW. A big furore and the owner has closed the paper down as from this sunday in disgust at his own reporters. They were hacking into the voicemails of dead people…………………….

Rain


Well the weather in Mexico sounds rather better than here. Rain and a lot of it most of this week. Very little news to report. The highlight of today was stopping at a garage to buy a sandwich on the way to the Hilton hotel in Southampton and being delighted to find that they sold not only hot burgers, but hot southern fried chicken burgers!
Now the Hilton hotel not only charge 3.30 for a cup of tea (AKA a tea bag) but now charge for the pleasure of parking the car there, another £3. Now its not even my money but my employers, but still the principle applies. So I will not be going there if can be avoided.
Brentford have signed a forward on loan from Celtic…………am getting quite excited about this season!

Hedgepig is not being kind


Despite a full cage clean last weekend, deodarant and the lot- it needed it…………he still makes every attempt to both prickle me and huf and puff. We gave him the last of his mealworms today with one beetle tucked away as his snack. He also has a new home, a new, well old, blue slipper well past its use by date……..

Birthday Celebrations


Sunday was sort of the start. Charles came over and we went to one of those 20-20 cricket games at Arundel. Arundel must be one of the best grounds to watch cricket. Elena was suitably unimpressed! huge curry in the evening made for a nice day.
Birthday day was great. No work, always a good start. Lunch at the Black Swan a pub in the countryside near Ockham, much to be recommended and even more so as they have removed brochette of squirrel from the menu. For me an unusual choice, butternut squash and chilli pie with mash………..followed by a huge pear tarte tatin with rhubarb ice cream. Something like 4 million weight watcher points and demotion to Fat club.
Sadly tuesday back to work but a few hours spent at sports day. Even more sadly up 5 am driving to leicester today and back this afternoon. not much fun. Roadworks everywhere.

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