28 April 2016 (Thursday) - Little Bit of Politics

For some inexplicable reason I was again wide awake at silly o'clock, and was up having brekkie and watching "Dad's Army" before 6am. My dog joined my half way through the program, but after a few minutes took himself back to his bed.
I then had a look on-line. Over the last few weeks I've been looking to complete my geo D-T grid. One of the D-T combinations I need is D4.5-T4.5. There aren't many of those. The one I had my eye on seems to have gone walkabout, but overnight the chap who owns it saw that I was keen and has asked me to replace it for him. I've very happy to help out, especially as replacing it means I get a guaranteed find. Some say that's a bit cheeky of me. I don't. I shall do that next Thursday. If anyone would like to join me you can see all the details by clicking here.

I scraped the ice from my car and set off to work. As I drove the pundits on the radio were interviewing the Minister of State for Employment. Ms Pritti Patel was taking a very anti-European Union stance and was going on at great length about how she is very much against the EU because of all the rules, regulations and red tape that they force on to the British against our will. However when asked to give specific examples of these rules, regulations and red tape she was utterly unable to give a single example. Eventually she came up with the European Working Time Directive as being a good example of a European idea forced onto an unwilling British population, but was then rather embarrassed to have to admit that several polls have shown that the average Brit quite likes the idea of the European Working Time Directive since it stops us having to work every hour God sends and gives us holidays too.
I'm finding it more and more difficult to find any valid reasons for leaving the EU. It speaks volumes that a Conservative Prime Minister and the leader of the Trade Unions Council have issued a joint statement supporting continued EU membership.
I'm fast coming to the conclusion that the whole anti-EU thing is just a scam stirred up by Boris Johnson. If he can play on the inherent xenophobia that exists in far too many people then David Cameron will lose face in a humiliating referendum defeat and Boris will be ideally placed to become the next Prime Minister.

I got to work, did that which I coouldn't avoid, and came home again. Once home I walked "Furry Face TM" round the park. He played nicely with lots of other dogs. Not a single scrap.

We had a rather good bit of dinner - a roast dinner. Don't get those very often these days...

27 April 2016 (Wednesday) - Late Shift

It starts getting light shortly after 5am these days. I was wide awake long before dawn this morning. I gave up trying to sleep and was shaved, eating brekkie and watching "Plebs" before 6am. With little else to do I took my dog for a walk much earlier than usual.
As we went out I could see my car was covered in ice. We went up to Bowens Field where we met some strange woman who was shrieking at her dog and at every other dog within shrieking range. She kept screaming at me to ask if my dog was all right. I gave her a range of answers; I don't know what answer she was hoping for but it was obvious I never suppplied teh right answer.
We also met the two old blokes who insist on giving treats to every dog they meet. I wish they wouldn't. Once given a treat "Furry Face TM" will then follow them rather than going where he is supposed to go. I could see the dog treats in their hands; I managed to herd him away before he saw the treats.
Whe came home after an hour's wander, once home I noticed that the ice on my car had melted. Mind you it still felt very cold.

I set off to work a little earlier than I needed to; as I drove home on Monday morning after the late shift a new geocache had gone live along my drive to and from work. This morning (two days later) it was still unfound so I thought I'd try my luck. I parked up about five hundred yards from where I needed to be and (having got my wellies on) I walked through the woods to where I hoped to find hidden tupperware. It was a good morning to be out and about; I even saw a couple of deer as I walked.

My hopes weren't high when I saw the GPS was pointing over a barbed wire fence ten yards into an open field. The hint given said "under ivy at base of tree" - there was one obvious ivy covered tree the base of which had clearly been recently ransacked. I had a look there and elsewhere but after half an hour decided I'd drawn a blank.
Oh well... it had been a pleasant walk.

I then drove on to Morrisons. As I drove "Women's Hour" was on the radio. I've been less than complementary about this show before. Today they were up in arms because only one in six entries on Wikipedia are about women. I would have thought that (bearing in mind entries on Wikipedia cover pretty much absolutely everything and anything) one in six was a rather high proportion.

I got to Morrisons, got supplies, and moved on to Go Outdoors. I've been after a cheap inflatable boat recently. They had inflatable canoes for two hundred and fifty quid, and air beds for a fiver.
I shall go sailing on an air bed....

And so to work. As is so often the way when on a late shift, most of the day's excitement was over by the time I'd got to work. I did what I had to, and came home again.

The astro club had been asked to put on a starggazing show for a load of French schoolchildren (who were staying locally) this evening. But being on a late finish didn't make going practical for me. Next time maybe...

26 April 2016 (Tuesday) - Housework (and stuff)

I slept llike a log until the small hours when I felt my dog jumping on top of me. He then made himself comfortable leaving me to sleep as best I could under the circumstances.
I got up shortly after 7am and did my morning pootling as best I could whilst "Furry Face TM" shouted out of the window at every single passer-by. He was in a very shouty mood this morning.
Over brekkie I had a mooch on Facebook and realised I'd missed an opportunity. With a little effort I *could* have watched the first episode of the new series of "Game of Thrones" over brekkie yesterday rather than waiting till the official broadcast at 9pm yesterday evening. And then having watched it early I could then have told "certain people" what was going to happen. Like they "kindly" told me what happened in the latest Star Wars film before I had chance to watch it.
Mind you it's not as though much really happened in last night's episode. As the show has gained in popularity so the stars have made it a stipulation in their contracts that they keep their clothes on. This has (in many ways) detracted from the appeal of the show. Don't get me wrong - it's quite a good programme *if* you've paid attention since the very first episode. And for a show involving an extremely complicated plot, loads of blood, and lots of random tits being flopped about it takes a lot to beat. But more and more the tit flopping is taking a back seat.

I took "Furry Face TM" round the park for a walk. It was a cold morning; we didn't meet many other dogs which was (as always) probably for the best. Mind you we did meet OrangeHead's Chunky Little Friend (minus OrangeHead for once). She was pushing her dog push chair with her little dog trotting along quite happily behind. He seemed to be on the mend after whatever it was that put him into his dog push chair, and he played quite happily with "Furry Face TM" for a few minutes.
A jogger jogged past and said hello to me. I looked again - it was someone with whom I used to work many years ago. She's been on my Facebook list for some time; we chatted for a while.

Once home I did that which I had been threatening to do for some time. I loaded all of the fragments of broken fence into the back of my car. I then went through the living room like a dose of salts and got two bin bags of assorted rubbish together. Admittedly the new Hoover is a tad smaller than the last one but I managed to Hoover up enough stuff to have to empty the thing twice.
It is such a shame that despite all that effort the living room still looks every bit as cluttered as when I started.

I then did a tip run to get rid of all the rubbish. As always the idiots were out in force at the tip. My piss particularly boiled at one fool. He had parked his car in such a way that he had blocked most people's way. Not happy with this, he was carrying his rubbish to the various skips one piece at a time. And then every time he came back to his car for more rubbish he spent a couple of minutes arguing with the woman sitting in his car's passenger seat.
Perhaps if he carried more rubbish each time and perhaps if she had got off her arse then everyone could have got their jobs done quicker.

Home again to find someone had parked in the space right outside my house. This was no real problem; I found a space not ten yards away. But as the chap who'd parked outside my house came back to my car I made a point af asking why he hadn't used the car park of the shop he's been to. The bloke was quite apologetic; he didn't know the place had a car park.
People park in the street near our house and go to the ironmonger just up the road all the time. The place has its own car park. No customers *ever* use that car park, but the shopkeeper gets *really* abusive when locals park in it overnight when his shop is closed. I once used that car park to turn my car around in one evening, and the shopkeeper actually threw himself in front of my car screaming that I couldn't use his car park.

Just lately the local bus shelters have all had adverts about a three quid deal available from the KFC so I thought I'd treat myself this lunch time. I got to the KFC and found that this deal was actually three quid for not very much so I got a mega bucket instead. As I devoured it I watched the last episode of the documentary about girls joining the army.
I then started the ironing as I watched the first two episodes of "Flowers". It wasn't so much alternative comedy as an alternative to comedy. But it filled an hour.
As I ironed my phone beeped. An email. I've been invited to an interview for a management position. As part of the interview I've got to give a presentation entitled "Given the challenges within the NHS, how do I motivate others and take them with me."
So once the ironing was done I spent the rest of the afternoon making a start on this presentation. If any of my loyal readers have any thoughts on the matter please don't hesitate to drop me a line.

Jimbo called round to collect the astro club money. We spent a few minutes putting the world to rights, then I spent a few minutes programming "Hannah" for the weekend. "er indoors TM" came home and boiled up a rather good bit of dinner, then the tribes gathered. We watched a rather good episode of Supergirl, then teased "Furry Face TM". He seemed to like the attention.

Bed time... My stomach don't feel right and I've had a few nose bleeds today. I wonder if I'm sickening for something...

25 April 2016 (Monday) - Another Day Asleep

As I did the night shift last night I listened to Radio 4 Extra again. Mike Batt (of "Wombles" fame") expounded on his favourite record, David Attenborough listed his favourite eight records on Desert Island Discs (does *anyone* really like the classical drivel he was playing), there were quite a few comedies.... but two hours worth of air time was repeating what was broadcast on the night before, and an hours worth in the small hours was repeating what had been broadcast only a few hours previously.
I've emailed the BBC to complain about the matter of the repeats. It was probably just as well that listening the radio wasn't my only reason for being up all night.

With work done I came home. Ironically just as I got home I got an email telling me that a new geocache had gone live not five minutes away from work. Something not entirely dissimular happened yesterday too. Some people would fid that frustating; in my world it boils my piss.

I popped the lead onto "Furry Face TM" and we walked round to Asda where we met "Daddies Little Angel TM" and "Stormageddon - Bringer of Destruction TM". He really has got the "hands up who loves Grandad" down to a fine art. "Daddies Little Angel TM" had some shopping to get so we walked through Willesborough Dykes to Tesco. As we walked we met a couple off bulldogs. I can only describe them as "hench" (as "My Boy TM" would say). They were rather rather chunky. "Furry Face TM" seemed to feel rather threatened by them. Usually he'd pick a fight; he seemed terrified.
Once at Tesco I supervised the dogs whilst shopping was bought and after spending ten minutes watching the rats playing in the fields we came home via the bakery. Belgian bus are always good.

"Daddies Little Angel TM" took "Stormageddon - Bringer of Destruction TM" home. I had a lot of stuff to do, but having been up all night I though I really should get an hour's shut-eye; I woke five hours later.

Yesterday I mentioned that I have fence fragments to take to the tip. Yesterday I put that job off to today; today I put the same job off till tomorrow. It was raining. Instead I spent a few minutes applying for a job I'm not sure I want, and then spent a few minutes making plans for the future; walks don't organise themselves.

Pie and chips was scoffed, "er indoors TM" went bowling, and now it's telly time. Gotham is on later and Game of Thrones is back in an hour.....
Much as I like the night work it sometimes leeaves me feeling that the days after the night shifts are days wasted....

24 April 2016 (Sunday) - A Day Asleep

I did last night's night shift; as I did my thing I listened to Radio 4 Extra - plays, comedies, quizzes, documentaries and even an episode of the Twilight Zone. Not a bad way to spend the night really.
And with my thing done I came home along a rather circuitous route via Junction 11 of the M20. It was only five miles out of my way. But today was a geo-calendar day and with half a dozen caches in the area that I'd not found I thought this might maximise my chances of a find. Despite the rain I drove down there hoping it might dry up. It did.
I wasted five minutes trying to find one cache which had eluded me before. I still couldn't find it today. So I drove on for another half a mile and soon was doing the secret geo-thing watched only by some sheep.

I came home and said goodbye to "er indoors TM" and "Furry Face TM" as they went out. Ideally I would have been off out with them; a session of climbing trees had been arranged for today near Sevenoaks. But what with today being the day between two night shifts that wasn't a practical option, so I stayed home and sulked. It had been raining overnight, so I consoled myself with the thought that it wasn't really tree-climbing weather.

I had this plan to carry on disassembling broken fence panels and mowing the lawn and then have a spot of brekkie. It was a good plan. I got the lawn got mowed, and the broken fence panels are now in pieces ready to be loaded into my car to be taken to the tip. I'll do that tomorrow.
I then had the planned brekkie and tookk myself off to bed for the day.

Five hours later I woke, had a cuppa and watched a few episodes of "Red Dwarf VIII" on the "Dave" channel. Had I known it was on I would have recorded some episodes that had been on whilst I was asleep and watched those so I could fast-forward through the adverts.
"er indoors TM" and "Furry Face TM" still weren't home; the house is a lonely place without my little dog.

Time for another night shift....

23 April 2016 (Saturday) - Bodiam

Over brekkie I saw that there is now a paperback version of the book in which my stories were published. You can buy it on Amazon by clicking here. Ok it's not cheap but if any of my loyal readers get a copy I'll sign it for you. And (at a stretch) I can probably get one of the other authors to scribble on it too....
I then read something which made me a little sad. There are plans afoot for a new Star Trek series to be released next year. In the meantime those who own the copyright to all things trekkie are clamping down on the unlicenced use of their stuff. Whilst it is their right to do so, I wonder if they are pissing off the very people to whom they are trying to cater. Mind you the fan-run Star Trek themed pub in London was closed down years ago for breach of copyright. Fan-run conventions done for fun don't happen any more. It has *always* been about the money. Shame, really...

My dog eventually woke, and he came and sat with me on the sofa generally being soppy. As I did I reflected that a cat would only be soppy for a few minutes before either biting or clawing me.

With brekkie scoffed we popped the lead on to "Furry Face TM" and went for a little walk. Both "er indoors TM" and I needed to find tupperware what with today being a geo-calendar day for both of us. We drove down to Bodiam, parked in the car park (three quid please!) and went for a little stroll.
First of all we went down to the steam train. That would have been rather nice had I not clouted my head on a sign and had we not found a dying duck. The poor duck had obviously been hit by a car. My initial reaction was to put it out of its misery, but "er indoors TM" thought we should give it a chance so I carried it to a nearby field where it sat looking rather the worse for wear. I suspect a fox has now had it.
We then walked back to the castle's grounds where I told the nice lady from the National Trust that I was *not* going to pay £9.15 to walk along a public footpath. She tried to claim that where we were standing was not a public footpath. I conceded that specific point, but pointed out that one hundred yards along from where we were arguing *was* a public footpath and the only reason we hadn't followed that path from its start was that someone from the National Trust had blocked said path off with a fence.
The nice lady's position wasn't helped by her refusal to look at my interactive map and she soon conceded defeat.
We followed the public footpath up past the castle and up the hill where there were some rather spectacular views to be had. You can see some of them by clicking here; as always I took a few photos as we walked.

It would have been good to have walked longer and further... but that was not on the cards for today. Probably just as well as the rain started as we drove home.
Once home there was a sausage sandwich for lunch and I had a minor victory. It has taken some effort and quite a bit of swearing, but I can now upload my NeonGeo field notes directly into logs via GSAK. I did so as part of today's geo-jasmer-calendar day. (I can speak fluent geocaching you know!).

I then took myself off to bed for the afternoon. A bit of dinner - time for the night shift...

22 April 2016 (Friday) - Frogs and Twin Oaks

I was *so* glad that today was a day when I was rota-ed not to be at work. What with the vagaries of my shift system I've been on "not-nights" this week. Those are shorter shifts and consequently I do more of those to make up the total hours worked.
Having worked four consecutive days has proved to be something of a strain.

Over brekkie I watched the last episode of "Plebs" that was on the SkyPlus box. To me it is not unlike "Raised by Wolves" and "Detectorists"; a wonderful show which has been toally overlooked by the masses.
I then set AVG scanning the laptop and had a little tidy-up of the coffee table; it is amazing just how much crap accumulates on there. I now have space to put down my coffee cup. The same can't be said about the rest of the house but such is (my) life...

Being on a rostered day off I had planned to for for a geo-walk today. But my usual mid-week companions were both busy and no one else had taken me up on the idea. So instead me and "Furry Face TM" met up with "Daddies Little Angel TM" and "Stormageddon - Bringer of Destruction TM". We went for a little stroll down through Willesborough Dykes and into Park Farm then back home through South Willesborough following a route we've walked many times in the past. We'd not walked this way for at least six months; in the meantime new playparks have been built and new houses and fences have appeared.
It rained a little, but not *that* much really. We came home past "Pets at Home" where I asked if "Furry Face TM" could stand on the scales. He's lost 0.2 kilogrammes; I saw that as a result and as a reward he got a vegetarian dog treat.

I intended to mow the lawn next, but it was a tad damp from the rain. Instead I made a start on disassembling the broken fence panels we replaced a month or so ago. For some reason I thought there was only two panels to shift; there was actually five. I got two disassembled and into the car (together with a bin of garden rubbish) and did a tip run. Once at the tip I realised I'd forgotten all the other stuff I said I'd get rid of. Woops!
From the tip I popped into town. Film pots are always useful and Boots give them away. I also had a look for cheap DVDs in the CEX shop, and I asked the mobile phone shop how long I had left on my contract. There is still a month to go before I am free of them. Can any of my loyal readers recommend a decent mobile phone network. I'm particularly interested in the mobile broadband coverage. "Everything Everywhere" has (in my unfortunate experience of the last four years) actually been "Nothing Anywhere" and I intend to change provider at the first opportunity.

Once home I had a bite to eat and watched the first half of one of the DVDs I'd bought. "Platoon" was a tad dull... I say "dull" - that is probably not the best word, but the film seemed to be somewhat lacking a plot. After a while I turned it off, set the washing machine loose on my shirts and did the monthly accounts.
I always say the accounts could be better. There's no denying the could be better, but they could certainly be a whole lot worse.
And with accounts done I thought I might iron the shirts I'd washed. However the washing machine was still busy with them. So I watched the second half of "Platoon". The second half was much like the first half - guns and blood and explosions and very little else.

"er indoors TM" came home and we went out. She had a geo-calendar day and wondered if I fancied coming out with her to locate some tupperware. I'd had my eye on a cache near Staplehurst for some time for Jasmer reasons (Jasmer is a rather tedious geo-thing). So we popped the lead onto "Furry Face TM" and drove out to the back of beyond. We had a rather good walk through orchards and woods filled with bluebells and past lakes befoore finally finding a rather manky plastic box. A couple of yards away we found the thing's lid. Normally I'd suggest it be archived, but (for Jasmer reasons) I replaced it with a new one.
We made our way back to the car; getting to the car just as the rain started.

I took a few photos of our walk. Once home posted them on-line as I know my mum likes seing what I get up to. Sausage and chips for tea... and I'm worn out. For all that today was a day off I started off feeling tired and I didn't stop all day...

21 April 2016 (Thursday) - Happy Birthday Ma'am

I woke in something of a panic. I'd been having a nightmare in which I was charged with supervising half a dozen illegal immigrants all of whom were akin to unruly children and thought that running away was a great joke. It was with something of a sense of releif that I woke to see it was 5.30am.
Over brekkie I watched another episode of "Plebs"; I think I'm quite getting into that show.

I then had a look-see on line. The morning's haul of emails included one from the power company. Last year I spent £465.69 on gas and £523.74 on leccie. Next year they estimate that over the entire year I shall spend fifteen quid more on leccie and eight quid less on gas. Bearing this in mind together with how they have operated over the years I expect they will increase the monthly direct debit by about ten quid.

The radio spewed its usual blend of drivel as I drove to work; I stopped off at Morrisons for cake. Being the Queen's birthday today we all brought in cake to work to celebrate. There are those who say the country can't afford a Monarchy. Those who say that are wrong. The most recent figures I can find show that the Queen was given £37.9 million in 2014-15 to do the Queening which was expected of her.
In the same year the revenue from the Royall Estates which was given to the Treasury totalled £285 million. So the country actually makes a profit of over two million pounds a year out of having a Queen.

I'm quite a strong supporter of Her Majesty. Mind you I have reservations about the next in line. Prince Charles today was broadcasting reading some Shakespearian tribute to his mother. Whilst it was probably amusing and touching *if* you are into Shakespeare, the vast majority of the population aren't. I for one was wondering what he was blathering on about.
The public (generally) love the Queen. I wonder if our future King has the common touch? I don't think he has.

We had been thinking off going for a little walk this evening. The Heaths Countryside Corridor people had organised an evening of newt-spotting. But by the time we'd got home and walked "Furry Face TM" my heart wasn't in it.
Instead I munched on a cheese scone and planned a little geo-excursion for Saturday morning whilst "er indoors TM" boiled up some dinner.
I shall scoff that in a minute...

20 April 2016 (Wednesday) - A Fountain

Yesterday I had a bit of a moan about a Christian. This morning over brekkie I found another one who wound me up. You can see the article which boiled my piss by clicking here (but be warned - it is full of adverts). Basically some American woman (with voices in her head?) feels that those who don't beleive in her god are fundamentally unable to express gratitude. Her reasoning goes something along the lines of her god is the only reason that good things happen. She is grateful for good things because they remind her of her god. However if you don't beleive in her god then there is nothing for which you need to be grateful. She has this theory that no one does anything good of their own accord; they only do it because her god propmts them to do so. Consequently those who don't beleive in her god are therefore unable to do anything good. (no - it doesn't make any sense to me either)
She went on at great length about the matter.
She's allowed to vote you know; and quite probably is eligible to serve on juries. Did I ever mention that I don't beleive in democracy?

I popped the lead onto "Furry Face TM" and we went for a little walk round the park. Whilst off the lead he played nicely with a beagle and the two scotties he usually terrorises, and on the way home (and on the lead) he nearly hung himself as he wrapped another dog's lead round his neck (several times).
Whilst out I created a place on Facebook. I must walk past the Hubert Fountain at least five times every week. So I created it on Facebook. There's quite a bit of history about the thing; you can read up about it if you are bored. I must admit to having a soft spot for the fountain ever since a seven-year old "Daddies Little Angel TM" fell into it. I did tell her not to reach over; I warned her. And when she fell in I did laugh.
I wonder if I've any photos of her in the fountain.

Once home I activated the dishwasher. I'm good like that. I then watched a bit of telly. "Plebs" is something I've been meaning to watch for some time; mainly because I like Joel Fry. It was quite entertaining; I've told the SkyPlus box to download more episodes.
I then set off to work. Ideally I would have spent today with "er indoors TM" visiting Canadian relatives, but I didn't even ask about getting the day off. I could see that wasn't practical.

And as is so often the case on the late starts everything worthy of note today happened before 11am...

19 April 2016 (Tuesday) - Goodbye Blake

The last thing I did last night was to tighten up the straps on my CPAP machine; it's been a bit loose lately. With it fitting more snugly I slept like a log. Mind you I was *seriously* aching when I woke; I must have overdone the fetching and carrying at the weekend.

Over a spot of brekkie I watched last night's episode of "The Last Man on Earth"; the show started very well, but it seems to have rather lost its way at the moment. I then got a text from "My Boy TM" - he's on a little fishing holiday and he's caught a rather substantial haddock (as one does).
I also checked out my emails. Yesterday evening on our dog walk I put out the cache for my latest wheri-project (A Knight's Quest) and sent it in to the geo-feds for approval. The thing went live later yesterday evening and the local FTF-hunter ran straight for it out and was battling virtual trolls and rescuing virtual princesses in the park. He finally found the fiinal part shortly after midnight. If nothing else it has proved the thing works.
I've now not got any wherigos in progress. I have an idea for one based on the game of "Battleships" but can I be bothered making any more?
Much as I enjoy designing the things they are a *lot* of effort which is reallised by a very small number of people. Take my James bond themed one for example. It's been live for eight months and only four of the Kent-based cachers have found it. Or my Batman based one; I am very flattered that some people really have travelled hundreds of miles to do it; however the locals find it at the rate of one find per month.
I asked this very question on one of the geocaching groups several months ago. many people were very encouraging, but those locals who were the most vocal in telling me to continue haven't actually gone out and found any of the things in the meantime.

I left for work half an hour later than I did yesterday. The roads were so much busier. What a difference half an hour makes.
There was a surprise revelation on the radio that our old friend science had discovered that the asteroid that hit the Yucatan peninsula sixty five million years ago probably didn't do for the dinosaurs quite as comprehensively as we once thought it did. Science has supposedly recently discovered that dinosaurs were on the way out long before that. Or so the pundits on the radio claimed.
What winds me up is that this isn't news. I've known this for years.
Why does the radio presenters persist in touting established facts as news?

I got to work and spent a little while being preached at by the resident Christian. Why do these religious types always try to claim the moral high ground? Why does having an invisible friend make you a better person?
After a surprisingly busy day I made my way home and took my dog for a walk round the park. It was a lovely evening; the joggers were out in force. We met a few dogs as we walked but had no inciddents whatsoever. In fact the only fly in tonight's ointment was a tramp who seemed to be rather scared of "Furry Face TM".

Being Tuesday the clans actually did gather despite Matt's cough. We scoffed far too many sweeties, and bearring in mind Gareth Thomas had recently died we watched the first episode of Blake's Seven. Regular readers of thiss drivel may remember I've got that series on DVD and have watched it a few times.
It's a classic...

18 April 2016 (Monday) - Bit Dull

I suppose it's no surprise that I ached somewhat when I woke this morning. But I struggled up. There was a minor hiccup when I discovered that what I thought was a new tin of shaving gel was actually deodorant, but I rose above such adversity. Over a spot of brekkie I watched Saturday's episode of Dad's Army, and then had a look-see on-line. Little had changed.

I spent a few minutes scraping ice from the car's windscreen (it was cold this morning) and then set off to work. As I drove John Redwood MP was being rather scathing about the latest financial forecast from the Treasury. Apparently (so-called) official figures now show that should Britain leave the EU our economy will be officially down the toilet by 2030.
He's right to take this line. No one can have the faintest chance of making such a prediction for fifteen years into the future. Both pro-and anti- EU brigades are now making such ridiculous scaremongering statements. And for all that he European parliament and courts are far from perfect, every criticism of them could also be made about the British parliament and courts.
I'm still struggling to form a fair opinion on whether or not we should stay in the EU. I think the bottom line will be are we better together with all the other European countries or would we be better off on our own? (In which case Scotland and Wales should automatically be cast adrift). The average Brit doesn't lke foreigners so the "out" campaign will win.

Bearing in mind I'd run out of shaving gel I stopped off at Morrisons for supplies. Some days Morrisons is quite the adventure, some days dull. Today was dull. Generally the loonies who brighten the place up are still in bed at 7am.

And so to work. I did that which I couldn't avoid, and came home again. Once home I popped the lead onto my dog and we walked round the park. As we walked we met the two scotties withh whom "Furry Face TM" often fights. It was odd; we see these two scotties (with a woman) when we walk in the mornings. Then the scotties are always on leads, and there is usually something of a fight. Today they were with a bloke and off their leads and all played nicely.

"er indoors TM" boiled up a rather good bit of scran then went off bowling. I settled down in front of the telly expecting to do my usual Monday night telly thing... But tonight was the last Muppet show and the documentary about trainee sailors has finished. Mind you Gotham is on later.

And in closing do you like the piccie above? I've been giggling about it all day.

17 April 2016 (Sunday) - CITO and a Bat

I would have expected to have slept well last night having downed a gallon of ale. However my dog spent much of the night pushing and kicking me whilst making himself comfortable. I *know* I should have taken him back to his basket, but he's such a little sweetie.... (Did I ever mention I never wanted a dog?)

Over brekkie I swallowed coffee like medicine. There's no denying I was feeling a tad under the weather. Whilst I will strenuosly maintain that I am not too old to go geocaching up trees, in rivers or underground, I can't help but wonder if going out for a serious pub crawl is (more and more) a younger man's game. Regular readers of this drivel may recall that Saturday always used to be pub crawl afternoon. How did I ever manage it?
I tried to have my usual mooch round the Internet, but struggled somewhat. A little while ago our Internet connection was flaky to the point of being unusable. We upgraded to fibre-optic and it has been far better. But this morning it was having troubles. I wonder what that was all about.

We collected Suzy and her entourage and set off on our usual Sunday geo-mission. But today was a geo-mission with a differennce. Today was the monthly geo-meet, and today we'd been asked if we wouldn't mind helping out with a party of volunteers working on the Drop Redoubt at Dover's Western Heights. Thhis was CITO weekend in whiich geocachers around the world were asked to get involved in tidying up where we could.
We met up with everyone and after a quick pep-talk we werer asked to divide oursellves into two gangs. One gang would be doing clearances of brambles; I went with a smaller group who would be doing heavy lifting inside the redoubt itself.

I actually said at the time that it would be so easy to write "half a dozen of us carried fifty scaffold boards up sixty six steps, then down eighty steps". And I was right. *Very* easy to write it; *incredibly* hard work to do. But despite the wheezing, gasping for air and chest pains it was fun. We did have a laugh. And with scaffold boards shifted we fetched and carried some more.

We were then sent for a spot of lunch. But seeing how the other gang were still hacking the brambles, Karl and I found a vantage point from which we had a wonderful view, and sat and watched the world go by over a bottle of ale. We could see the harbour spread out below us, and with it being such a bright day we could clearly see the coast of France in the distance.
We joined everyone else for a spot of lunch (and another bottle), then being gluttons for punishment we left those doing serious gardening to their hacking and we went back to the redoubt. For the afternoon we were asked to move a load of bricks from one place to another. We had quite the chain-gang going. Jason bashed the bricks together to shift the loosee dirt then passed them to Karl who loaded them into buckets. Karl then lowered the buckets of bricks to Gordon. Gordon then lowered the buckets (on a rope) to me. I then unloaded the bricks and passed them to Aleta who then stacked them where they were to be stacked.
After half an hour of this I had a little surprise. There was what looked like a leaf on one of the bricks. A furry leaf. A moving furry leaf.

On closer inspection I saw we had a little bat in our bucket. He'd survived the bricks being knocked together, passed around, loaded into buckets and lowered about on ropes. We immediately stopped work and had a little conflab. Realising I was probably breaking the law I picked the bat up anyway. He seemed quite content to be handled; I carried him to the brick pile from where he must have come. We made a little shelter for him (a bat-cave!) and I tried to put him in there. It took some doing; he didn't want to let go of my thumb, and because he was so small I was very conscious that I might hurt him. I took a few photos of him before he finally let me go.

I had another bottle of ale to calm my nerves after this ordeal, then we went to join the other working party. They'd done amazing work. What was originally a bramble-ridden thicket was now completely cleared. I chipped in for a few minutes scraping soil away to expose a set of stairs which were two hundred years old
By now most people had gone home; where we'd started with over fifty people we were now down to the last dozen. And realising that we didn't want to get locked in we said our goodbyes and came home.

Once home I put some washing in (laundry doesn't wash itself you know) and I then did a little bat-research. I did know that it was illegal to handle a bat. However it says on the Internet "It is illegal to handle a bat unless to rescue it from danger". That little thing was certainly in danger where we were hoiking the bricks about. I don't think I'll get in too much trouble from carrying him to safety.

With "er indoors TM" off bowling I settled in front of the telly. I turned up the volume so's I could hear the telly over the sound of my dog's snoring aand watched a film. "Ender's Game" was something I've been meaning to watch for some time. It was something of a disappointment....