Plenty Of Water

The summer's water shortages and hosepipe ban seem a long time ago now.

This morning saw a frisky little storm up here with gale force winds blowing and heavy rain causing localised street flooding, fallen trees and roof slates plus the obligatory rogue wheelie bins.

When P collected me from my morning's volunteering shift at the Hospice shop he dolefully informed me that all of our leaded, stained glass windows had been leaking with puddles of water collecting on all the window sills.  

We have mopped up the water and stuffed cloths along the bottom of each window but fortunately the rain has now stopped and the sun is shining once more, although the winds have not abated very much.

I really hope that this is just a result of the extreme weather today and doesn't mean that we have huge window restoration bills looming.

Characters On The Bus

We took a bus trip into the sprawling metropolis of Douglas this morning as P had an appointment for his booster jab at midday.

A young woman boarded about halfway there, laden down with a wheeled suitcase, huge rucksack plus a large "bag for life" crammed full.  She managed to get down to the back of the bus where, according to P, she was crying and talking on her 'phone to somebody about having just left home.  She struggled to get off on the outskirts of town so we don't know where she ended up.

After the jab, Christmas present shopping and lunch at The Caff opposite the bus station, we boarded the 1:10 bus back home.  This one was very full and with several "characters" on board.

One (very) young mum boarded first with a toddler in a buggy. Buggy and toddler were parked at the front near the driver whilst mum walked right to the back of the bus for the remainder of the journey. Thankfully, it was only when the bus neared their stop that the little girl jumped out of her buggy and wobbled to the exit door, ready to jump off.  Mum wandered down and retrieved bags and buggy but let the little one jump off by herself and scamper along the pavement beside the busy road. Eeek!

A young man boarded outside the college, looking very arty and studious with his trendy specs and long, collar length wavy hair under a stylish flat cap. He spent the whole journey working on his laptop.

A young man had boarded just after us and sat immediately in front of us. He was wearing baggy joggers and a hoodie and carried with him a most distinctive aroma of curry and pungent body odour.  He pulled up his hood and lay back to snooze for the entire journey, occasionally letting off little puffs of aromatic flatulence to add to the general miasma.

Ah, life's rich pageant.


 At 3:35 a.m. I awoke suddenly, no idea why, and lay there for a while looking up through the Velux window in the roof above my bed.

It must have been a fairly clear night because I could clearly see the bright, white light from the North Star (Polaris) hanging directly overhead.  I gazed at it for some time before I eventually dropped off to sleep again.

Out of interest, I googled the North Star and found an interesting article about it.  Apparently, due to the Earth's continuing spinning motion on its axis, in a thousand years' time Polaris will no longer be the "North" Pole Star as we shall be pointing in a slightly different direction.

I shall miss that.

Saving A Few Pennies

Well, it may not quite cover the cost of a new tank of heating oil but we shall not need to buy any apples and pears for a little while.

Which is a good thing as P has persuaded me to book us a little holiday in January .  Deposit paid today and fingers crossed for no disasters before then.

Out Of Puff

I am now recovered from my recent cold virus thingy, although still slightly short of breath. 

We walked into town this morning to stock up on bread,  milk,  yogurt etc and P bought a new pair of wellies as his 30 year old pair have sprung a leak.  Not good walking around the garden in cold, sodden socks.

It took us around an hour or so and I had to stop for a rest on a bench on the way back as I was a little breathless.

After lunch I was looking forward to curling up with my library book but P was keen (very keen) to take me out on a walk around one of the local glens.  "A nice easy walk" he said.

So I dragged myself off the sofa  put on my walking boots and slumped in the passenger seat of the car for the five minute drive down to Cornaa and the car park at Ballaglass Glen.

It is indeed a beautiful spot, almost like an enchanted wood. There is even a Wizard's Trail there for kids. Most of it was easy underfoot but some steep narrow parts around the waterfall had no handrail so P had to help me out.

Here are some photos from the walk...

An hour's walk in total and by the time we got home I was exhausted and just flaked out on the sofa.

Oldies But Goodies

This weekend has seen the Isle Of Man Festival of Motoring take place, with a huge array of impressive vehicles and several events taking place all over the island.

Today the cars were all lined up along the Mooragh Promenade on the north shore here in Ramsey prior to setting off on their cavalcade down to Douglas.

We wrapped ourselves up in coats and gloves and braved the chill wind to walk down for a skeet.  These are only a few of them.  There were too many for me to take photos of them all.

Some nice motors there.

Thank You

 Thanks to everyone for all the kind comments you left on my last post, and my apologies for not replying to them all, or leaving comments on your blogs.  I just couldn't concentrate through the brain fog.   I am feeling better now and am actually up and dressed today.  Most of this week has seen me either sleeping or putting in lots of quality sofa-time with a hot water bottle and a "feeling sorry for myself" face.  I tested negative for Covid so it was probably just a stinker of a cold. Still, I did manage to lose a kg or two in weight so not all bad then.

It is quite bright and sunny here today, which helps to hasten the recovery.  I pottered about outside in the garden for a while but there is a very sharp north-westerly cutting its way around the corners so I am back inside with tea and a chocolate digestive (dark chocolate of course) and wondering which plants to buy for late autumn/winter flowering.  We are planning on sowing a wildflower patch at the bottom of the drive which is currently just bare earth.  I have already planted some crocus bulbs down there for the spring and shall be sowing the wildflower seed soon to come up for some summer colour, but am not sure what to plant for colour after the wildflowers have faded.  Any suggestions are welcome!


Under The Weather

Must have picked up a virus on my errands last week.

Feeling very rough last night and today.

Will catch up when I feel better.


Wet and drizzly.  

P had an emergency dentist appointment at 1:30 in Douglas so we caught the 12:30 bus into town. I whizzed around the shops whilst he was being drilled and filled.

I only had 30 minutes to buy the things on my list so only managed to squeeze in Boots and Holland & Barrett before his text telling me he was on his way. Just time to pop into our version of Poundland (should be named Two-Poundland) for some reading glasses then a quick jog to the bus stop.  We didn't want to miss this bus and end up stuck on the "school chucking out time" service.

Home for a cuppa and the sad news about the Queen's failing health.


We are generally quite thrifty here at JayCee Towers. 

I never throw food away and use up whatever is left in some form of soup or stew.  P keeps everything and is handy with hammer and nails... and chainsaw.

The last couple of days had given us some warm September sunshine so P was itching to come up with another garden project.  Our driveway slopes quite steeply beyond the little patio outside the front door and our plant pots are always at an angle, propped up on the lower side by random bits of stone.

P set to with spirit level,  saw, hammer and nails and is now well on the way to construct a level "pot shelf" using up broken pieces of stone and rock plus the old fence posts (with the rotten bits removed of course).

It's coming on well.

(Now a boring cooking alert):  On Sunday  I had made a slow-cooker meal using some local Manx top rump that was marked down in the shop on its Use by date.  There was quite a bit of the beefy sauce/gravy left over so last night I used it up mixed with leftover couscous from the freezer for me plus a gravy for P's leftover sausages from last week.

Our visiting  friends from the last week or so had small appetites so there were plenty of leftovers in the freezer to keep us going after they went home.

We waste nothing.

Not The Best Day

Friday was not the best day I have had.   I started to write a blog post about it but it was turning into an epistle of epic proportions so I binned it.  A shortened version may still bore you but here goes.

Firstly, a half hour wait in the Post Office queue to send my (22 page) UK pension application. Then another half hour wait outside the Hospice shop to start my volunteering shift but nobody arrived to open the shop. Gave up after that and went home.

I had a routine eyesight test appointment at 1 p.m. at the optician, where I mentioned a sudden burst of floaters and flashing lights I had experienced the day before. She took a look at my eyes and offered an Optomap test (not included on NHS so cost me £40).  A letter was then produced for an urgent referral to A&E as she suspected retinal detachment and I was told to get over there straight away.


P dropped everything and drove me to the hospital in Douglas.  Three hours later and the ophthalmologist examined my eyes and pronounced all was clear, but to return immediately to A&E if I experienced any black shadows or veils over my eye.

I felt such a sense of relief I almost hugged him.  Those three hours in the waiting room were spent thinking about how I could adapt my life if I ever lost my vision.  Not exactly positive thinking but I couldn't help myself.

Today is very wet with a steady, drenching rain but I don't care. I am just so thankful I can see it.

Getting Back On Track

 After a few "uh oh" moments regarding the airline's online check-in and boarding pass procedures, our friends finally managed to jet off back to sunny Nevada yesterday.

It seems that the airlines' online systems cannot cope well with having one flight on the itinerary with a different carrier.  Airline A said check in via Airline B, but Airline B said check in via Airline A. Round and round in circles we went. Luckily the Isle of Man airport staff sorted it all out in less than two minutes. Simple.

After watching them pass through the departures security barrier at 11 a.m. yesterday we drove the five minutes into Castletown to sit with a coffee out in the sunshine and watched their inbound 'plane come in to land.  Half an hour later we watched them take off en-route to London, thence onward via Chicago to Reno..

I have just had an email telling me that they finally arrived home around an hour ago.  I expect they'll be a little tired by now.

My day today will be spent catching up on laundry and housework, with a visit to the library.  

I am also catching up with all your blogs and look forward to getting back to normal again.

Having visitors is wonderful but I do like having the house to myself again!