Peedeel has been in self-quarantine since last Monday. He is poorly but recovering. And he is happy that while most people bulk purchased toilet rolls, he bulk purchased brandy!

Sadly the girls, both totally symptomless, have had to self-isolate also. We are here together but apart, and so alone – I am, it seems, the poisoned apple in paradise.

Cheers for now, boys & girls


May 26, 2018

When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn’t go, and doesn’t suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, 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 public railings
And make up for the snobbery of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick 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 pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats 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 for dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practise a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old and start to wear purple.

Jenny Joseph

another cigarette

Diary 13th June

I’m feeling ruffled. My soul needs ironing. Have you ever had one of those mood where you just want to tell everyone who comes near – GO AWAY!

Well, that’s the sort of miserable bugger I am this morning. I should have had a couple more brandies last night. Take the rough edges of this crazy old world; make me feel more human…

Okay. So nothing for it now, but for me to go over to the coast and stand on the tallest cliff I can find and scream at the feckin’ ocean for an hour or so! That usually works for me…


Ah, what’s more incredible than the spectral glow of the moon glimpsed above fast scudding clouds? Or the sweet music of the wind in the trees, or the ancient life within those same trees?

And the rain…We’ve had three days of rain: fine, miserable, soaking drizzle.

A day in the life…

February 26, 2016

Diary_RAMSOM and MITCHELL_the last good man

Diary 25th February

White, white, frosty white across the moor this morning. Four in the AM. And colder here than a mother superior’s posterior!

Tomorrow’s forecast is for sleet, snow and rain – sleet and snow especially over the moors! I shall have to batten down all the hatches, curl up with a good book and a bottle of brandy on the sofa…better include a glass, too, with that; I’ve run out of straws.

Talking of brandy, last Sunday I sheepishly confess to drinking a veritable vat of red wine: started a little before lunch, got the bit between my teeth, as you do, and switched to brandy…Cheap Spanish brandy. I eat lunch (I think) but continued to imbibe the brandy through the course of the afternoon. Big mistake. Come supper time I was starting to nod off, had to return to my hotel room, meal unconsumed. Once there, I fell into a death-like sleep…and got a bit of a bollocking next morning.

‘Honestly, Peedeel. Drinking like that on an empty stomach. You really do need looking after. You shouldn’t be allowed out of bed without a fulltime minder.’

‘My stomach wasn’t empty,’ I replied quietly, forlornly but determinedly. ‘I eat a good breakfast…’ I knew I had because it was the last thing I could clearly remember before my mind fogged.

‘Well, it won’t do you any good drinking like that. You never had any of your meal last night…’

And so it continued. Deservedly so. Mea culpa.
The House of Lords attempted to ‘water down’ the worse parts of Ian Duncan Smith’s cuts to Employment and Support Allowance. Back in the Commons, MP’s rejected the Lords amendments (well they would, wouldn’t they) and £30 per week will be slashed from the allowances of the terminally ill and the disabled.

Priti Patel tasked with defending this onerous cutback, claimed it would ensure: “support is focused on the most vulnerable”.


More vulnerable than someone dying of cancer? Or those suffering with Parkinson’s, or with mental health problems – because that’s who we’re talking about here. People with illness or disability so serious that it makes it quite impossible for them to work!

Failing to have the guts required to introduce a bill for the euthanasia of disabled or seriously ill people in receipt of benefit, perhaps the government’s ultimate aim here is to pile on so much financial pressure and hardship that these unfortunate individuals will go off and quietly top themselves? Yes. Suicide is painless – it can also save money…
Have recently read and enjoyed Green for Danger (1945) by Christianna Brand. A script writer for the Beeb recently pinched the central idea for an episode of Father Brown. Enjoyed it immensely. See review HERE

I’d also recommend another of Brand’s books: London Particular (1955) which I read towards the end of last year. Not just a whodunit, but a great how’d they do it, too.