Thursday 30 January 2020

A sea view at Tenby . . .

We had to go to Tenby to see someone today.  Gone was yesterday's sunshine and we drove down there through low cloud.  Not an enjoyable journey.  This was all you could see at the beach too - just the waves breaking on the shore.

Part of the Medieval old walls - this gateway dates to the 13th C.

This interesting old building was opposite the Medieval gateway.

This building was once the Medieval Guildhall and chamber.

Close up of the medieval window detail on the building above.

Spring in January!  Makes my one crocus flower in the garden here look a bit pathetic . . .

St Mary's Church, Tenby.

A little narrow side street.

No longer trading, but what a lovely memory of this company.

Georgian houses overlooking the sea (well tiled to keep the weather off).

Now THAT'S what you call a garden wall!!

St Catherine's Island and 19thC Napoleonic Fort.  It became a zoo for a time, and was open to the public for a short while.

Below: the information boards near the little Museum and Gallery.  We had intended to visit it, but the admission price of £4.95 each put us off - I have been before, and it is a fairly modest museum . . .

The view across the Harbour.

Finally the Tudor Merchant's House - sadly not open in winter.  

Wednesday 29 January 2020

A Sunny Walk

Well, I wished for summer and I did at least awake to sunshine today, so I made the most of it and walked up the hill this morning.  Here are some photos as proof!!  :

The 2nd - and steeper - part of our hill.  This one has a VV marked on the map to denote steepness.  (I think it must stand for Very Very steep!!!)

A very misty view across the Towy Valley, and a barely visible Dryslywn Castle at the very back  (that hill!)

I would have liked to walk past the old farm, which I used to ride by up to the Canter Field.  However, they have always had a motley crew of dogs running loose, and last time I went by I thought I would be bitten, so I have avoided this route (it's a there and back again one anyway).  Perhaps armed with a stout stick I may try it again . . .

Looking towards Pantglas in the far distance.

A flourishing Cow Parsley in the ditch.  I saw my first Daffodils in bloom near Cwrt Henry today too!  That IS early.

More milky distant views across the Towy Valley with wooded Grongar Hill just visible in the centre (John Dyer wrote a poem about it).  Here's a link, but me warned, Dyer goes on a bit . . . If you are intending to learn a poem a week to keep your brain active, this is not a good one to start with!!

Just looking across our valley here.  The little cottage and barn in the foreground is on the hill we drive up to go to Cwrt Henry.

Gorse blooming happily.  The nicest wine I ever had was home made Gorse Wine.  Oh my, it tasted of sunshine and was amazing.

Little pixie cups growing on a damp rail.  I don't know their proper name but they always fascinate me.

Off downstairs now to enjoy a book.  I am glad to report I am sleeping better and feeling more human today and I think that bit of a cold has finally decamped from my sinuses.

Tuesday 28 January 2020

Please fast forward Summer . . .

Apologies for the lack of posts recently, but I am properly in the Doldrums and feeling very run down and jaded.  I have never enjoyed winter, but as you get older, it becomes worse!  I wish we could wake up one morning to full-on summer, but at least spring seems to be getting a move on and there are lots of Snowdrops in flower along the lanes, and I have the first Crocus in bud, and have had Cowslips blooming throughout December.

These lovely flowers have cheered me up a bit - one of my Romsey cousins popped in with her husband on the way back from a weekend in Pembs.  I'd not seen her since her mum's funeral, 3 years ago now, so it was good to catch up.

I used the last of the 2019 Elderberry Syrup last week, trying to knock this cold (in my sinuses) on the head and it helped, so I ransacked the freezers and came up with 4 lbs berries and made about half a gallon more!  Most of it is in the freezer now . . .  My sinuses are a bit clearer but I am still sleeping poorly - awake most nights between 1 a.m. and 4.30 . . .

Last weekend was the January Fair we always do.  It was a chilly weekend though as there is no heating most of the day and they have several of the ceiling lights open to replicate winter for the plants which live in here.  Sadly, antiques dealers do not thrive in the same temperatures (and wilt at the summer Fair!!)  It is a lovely venue though, and it was pleasing to see several special things go to the right people.  We are trying to scale down a bit now and get rid of old stock.

Right, that's about it.  I have numbed my brain playing game after game of Bubble Shooter on line - it's about all my brain can cope with at the moment.

Sunday 19 January 2020

Fighting Back!

Well, this immune system of mine seems to have taken a real beating with this cold, so I am finally fighting back with some home made Elderberry Syrup. I've had two lots today and that DID make a difference - if only stopping my runny nose for a bit and making me feel a bit brighter. I had a stroll up to our field gate and back (which believe me isn't far) but it was still very cold out and that effects my breathing, so I didn't want to push my luck.

I have watched an excellent programme about Henry VIII's first two wives which we recorded last night, and done a little of the stitching on my patchwork border for the W.I.P. quilt.  This was whilst I was Covered In Cats - who know they are onto a good thing when you are poorly!

I made Minestrone soup first thing - and made the mistake of putting a handful of Orzo in (pasta shaped like rice grains).  My goodness, I should have remembered that a little goes a long way and had to frantically add more water as the soup became nearly as thick as mortar!!  Anyway, it had cooking bacon in and was really tasty and it made me feel better just to have a bowl of that.

Peak flow about 475, which is respectable.  I am hoping I can sleep a bit better tonight as I have had nearly a month of very poor sleeping which doesn't help the immune system.

Right, off to watch tv for a couple of hours then an early night.  I am hoping the cold snap will kill a few germs in the neighbourhood.  It was much lighter late afternoon because of the clear skies too, so light till nearly 5 p.m.  Roll on spring - the birds have been singing in the mornings, which sounds SO good.  Onwards and upwards.

Wednesday 15 January 2020

A lovely day out

It was chucking it down with rain again yesterday, but despite this Tam and I decided to take advantage of her two for one offers on cinema tickets and food, and braved the elements to go and see "Little Women" which I have seen in several incarnations film-wise down the years.  This was the best yet and I can heartily recommend it.

My cold hasn't gone away yet, and I still have to keep blowing my nose - I sat at the back, honking like a tugboat now and again and trying not to cry in parts made it worse - how can you NOT cry when Beth dies? - as the tears took revenge and came down my nose instead!  I felt like Typhoid Mary and when the film was ended and the lady in front of us got up, I said loudly to Tam, "I am so fed up with this cold - I've had it 3 weeks now" so she knew I wasn't still infectious!

We are already planning to go and see "Emma" and "David Copperfield" when they are on release.  

Then we went the 20 yds or so from the cinema to Pizza Express where we had pizza and a glass of Pino Grigio and brought back big chunks of pizza in a box, which were lunch today.  This meal was half price too . . .  It was a lovely day out.

My cold is still plaguing me - I shall be glad when I see the back of it, as it has brought dizziness on occasion too - generally when I am lieing down in bed, but sometimes just moving around in the day.

We have some outside work to do too, as we had some trees felled last Friday and need to clear the brash with a bonfire and log the trunks.  Hopefully we will have some more sunshine like we had today.  One had a pronounced lean on it, all had Ash die-back and they were just by the stables, so not a good place to fall naturally.

Sunday 12 January 2020

A Winter Wildflower Walk

Well, how did the viewing go you are probably all thinking.  This couple were looking at houses all over - Devon, Shropshire, Wales and have no set notion of where they want to be.  I don't know if it will be the house which dictates, or the outbuildings (those were an essential) or the area.  Anyway, they liked the house, though it was blowing an absolute hooley all the time they were here and rain was being flung at a high rate of knot onto - and into - the walls.  We had a couple of leaky moments and I had to quickly go and hide the wet towel from where rain was being blown through a window which isn't as tight a fit as it should be on the side of the house that gets the weather.  That will be remedied tomorrow.  Anyway, I was incredibly stressed at the end of the day (from other problems I shan't mention) and had to have a brandy shandy to calm me down afterwards.  I never want another day like that again .. .  

Today we had sunshine and a heavy shower whilst we were out for a walk.  We went up around Colomendy to do a wild flower count.  We saw Snowdrops, Primroses, Wood Sage, Wild Strawberry, Dandelion, Gorse, a Periwinkle, a Violet, and Red Campion.

The end of the rainbow - wonder if there's any gold up there?

Ivy has been pollinated and set seed.

Looking towards Carmarthen.

Another rainbow, seen as we sheltered from a heavy shower, crammed in a barn doorway with a good overhang.

Flooding of the Towy down in the valley.

The cottage above Colomendy, going to rack and ruin now.  A big crack is in the gable end wall and quite a few roof tiles missing off the back.

The first Snowdrops.

Cow Parsley which always flowers somewhere in all but the coldest winters.

The first Primrose.

Looking towards Carmarthen and Merlin's Hill again.

One of the steep fields with a covert of gorse in bloom.

Looking back towards the Brynamman ridge.

First (or last!) Violet.  We also saw the first Butterfly of the year - a very hale and hearty looking Peacock.

Towards the mountains again.

The first spring lambs too!

Navelwort growing in a wall.

Wood Sage in flower on a sheltered bank.

Dryslwyn Castle in the sunshine.

Looking up our valley again, and below, across towards Llanfynydd and the Italianate tower of Pantglas (all that remains of the old hall).

Finally a Dandelion . . .So, a good day.  A 3 1/2 mile walk and some fresh air and exercise, plus I did some cooking this morning - a beef and sweet potato curry, a huge pan of stewed apple and a vat of spicy Beef and Barley soup.