February 29, 2020

An unexpected ride…

Posted in Uncategorized at 1:12 pm by Aleksan

I wasn’t expecting to be in the saddle today, but enjoyed a short time in the yard exercising Sonadora while Esmae was on Chockles. It has not been the best weather for riding recently, so not been out much with the horses. Really enjoyed it this morning, and Sonadora seemed as fit as I was, and rose to the occasion. Now the weather is set to improve, and the days are much lighter there will be more riding ahead, no stopping us!

February 27, 2020

Latin Master – H.K. King MA – King’s Taunton 1960 ish

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:26 pm by Aleksan

“What , what, what? You Spineless Jellybag! I’ll shake you like a dog does a rat!” Mr H K King MA, Latin Master at King’s College, Taunton circa 1960 – they don’t make ‘em like that anymore….

February 24, 2020

Sky Shenanigans!

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:48 pm by Aleksan

Sky Shenagigans! We got Sky when the kids lived here many moons ago, and just kept it going…but we don’t watch football or much sport so we have stopped using it, dismantled the equipment and remover the satellite dish.

This morning I tried to cancel the subscription! Then the fun began! All methods of online cancelling met a brick wall or were intercepted by scammers! They had locked My Sky, they were very busy indeed on the phone and it would take over 30 minutes. Emails I sent disappeared into cyberspace, never to be seen again – instead authentic messages from “Sky” confirmed the cancellation saying they would give me a refund if I sent my Bank details!

It is a nightmare – when I have recovered from laughing I will write a formal letter cancelling my Sky Subscription and send it by Registered Post – but what is the genuine address and who will receive it? Next step after that I guess will be to rattle the cage of some impersonal robotic Regulator – and go through the process all over again – Kafka, come back, all is forgiven!

But they did send me a message – to say that they knew my Satellite Dish was not working – it had been damaged by the storm….that would be Storm Jesse Johns I guess!

February 23, 2020

Mr Claver, I honour your kindness – thank you.

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:10 am by Aleksan

There has been a lot of talk about random acts of kindness from Teachers that have changed people’s lives. I was sent away to a boarding school, Marsh Court, aged 7. On the first night there at supper the Headmaster told me not to cry…because it would upset the other boys.

The next day we had to go up to the games field but I didn’t know the way. Mr Claver, a young man with dark curly hair, a prominent nose, wearing a checked sports jacket and smoking a pipe, saw me crying. He was kind and told me that it was his first day too. He pointed me through the woods to the games field.

Mr Claver was a strict maths Master who never said anything special to me again. But I have never forgotten his kindness, and will never forget him. School was bearable after that. Wherever you are, Sir, I honour you, and send my love and deep gratitude. I remember you often.

February 22, 2020

Pilates reality….

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:52 am by Aleksan

When your Pilates Instructor says “push your arms down on imaginary balloons and feel the heaviness of the air inside them” what you actually feel, after a few pushes, is a great heaviness in your arms. Golden Rule: NEVER EVER tell your Pilates Instructor that something is easy – she will smile in a sinister way, and then say “In that case…….” 😱. Thank you, Mel, for another challenging but enjoyable? session – you are working miracles on my old body and brain, slowly but very surely 🤪

February 20, 2020

Breath of the Goddess, Spirit of the Ancestors – the singing Wind!

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:38 am by Aleksan

The sighing, whistling,singing, howling of the Wind! I have always loved the Zepphyr, the South West Wind, in my parents bedroom, rattling the windows, at my first boarding school, Marsh Court, in Rhino Dorm, enticing me to sleep and dream. I once wanted an Aeolian Harp, but decided what I have is enough – opening the window just enough to enjoy the undulating scream that vibrates Soulfulness, the breath of the Goddess Herself, Spirits of the Ancestors! Ooooooeeeeeeiiiiiioooooww…..

February 19, 2020

Terstan, the house in the Longstock Water Meadows

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:22 am by Aleksan

Our house is built on the flood plain without proper foundations. It probably was constructed on a bed of reeds “floating” on peat. It is apparently sinking at a rate of 6 inches every hundred years, so I was told.

We have very low ceilings downstairs because the floor has been raised from time to time. Why was it built on the flood plain? Not a good idea for accommodation or for a farm. The reason is probably that many years ago it was one of six Water Mills recorded as being at Stoches (now Longstock) in the Domesday book.

We have never been flooded in our time here since 1969, but we have had water all around and flooding most of the garden. The house itself seems to be on a sort of island, and the large flood plain all around spreads out ground water,, or any over spill coming from a fast flowing trout stream, the River Test, only 17 miles long. This river is managed by Natural England, and the Houghton Fishing Club here controls the flow very effectively with a system of sluices and carrier streams.

We will continue to live here, but one day, hopefully after our time, this place will be flooded, and lie beneath a wider river Test…