Books, life the universe

Friday, 26 September 2008

Another 4 weeks off and a good book

I've been to see my GP today who asked me how long I think I need off. I suggested 4 weeks to which he seemed happy to agree. As he said, there's a huge difference between pottering around at home and stopping when it hurts and being at work where you can't just take breaks when you feel like it. He says he's going to put on the certificate when I go back that I am not to do repetitive work and not lift things which are too heavy etc. That's going to be fun as most of the files I work on are thick and heavy and I have to go through boxes of records - bank statements, receipts etc. Then there's spreadsheets and typing letters . . . . It will be interesting to see how they manage to sort it.

Meanwhile the manager we had back in May before she got temporary promotion sent me a get well card having just heard about my misfortunes - which was a nice thought.

I have just finished reading Ariana Franklin's 'The Death Maze' - historical crime with humour. Feisty women and larger than life men with warts and all. It's set in the reign of Henry II and centres on the murder of Rosamund Clifford - Rosa Mundi - Henry's mistress and involves Adelia who has trained as a doctor, trying to unmask the murderer and putting her own life in danger in the process. Her lover is a Bishop who she refuses to marry and who is involved in the investigation. Brilliant sparkling dialogue and excellent characters and plot. I loved it.

Saturday, 20 September 2008


Liking sheep as I do I could not resist this story from the Times Online:

Woolly thinking goes a long way in the City

A flock of Romney ewes were paraded across London Bridge yesterday, bringing a little cheer to beleaguered City workers. The sheep were driven by liveryman exercising an 11th-century right to bring livestock into the City free of charge. About 500 liverymen, dressed in royal blue robes and straw hats, enforced their right, which 1,000 years ago would have saved them from paying a bridge toll. David Lewis, the Lord Mayor of London, who is a part-time sheep farmer, led the procession, alongside the Company of Pikemen and Musketeers, his official bodyguards.
The Lady Mayoress, Theresa Lewis, noted the morale-boosting potential of the event. “It is just wonderful. Hopefully it is a bit of fun for business people to see, whose day may not be full of happiness at the moment,” she said.
John Martin, the president of the Romney Sheep Breeders Society, explained the significance of the breed. “There is a saying that the sun never sets on the Romney sheep.”
The ewes, from a farm in Ashford, Kent, were trained for the noise and excitement of the City by their farmer George Horne, who spent six weeks marching them along busy roads while banging dustbin lids.
It is hoped that the event will raise £40,000 for this year’s Lord Mayor’s Appeal.

The weekend

As I've mentioned before on here I am part of the Amazon Vine programme and receive free items to review. I can chose two items from a list once a month and then another one from the list the following week. From time to time they also issue other lists. It is quite carefully controlled in that you have to review 75% of the items you've received before you're allowed to pick any more. Up to this month I'd always chosen books. This month I was offered a top of the range electric steamer. By coincidence I'd already just bought a cheap £24.99 Tefal version as we'd decided to steam vegetables in future as we think they're nicer. As I'm never one to look a gift horse in the mouth I chose the Morphy Richards £100 worth of steamer as one of my products this time and it arrived today. It's very well put together and can switch on different bits of itself at different times so you can cook a whole meal by simply telling it when you want each bit to come on. I was pleased with the cheap one so I shall be using the expensive one later today to see if I can tell the difference.

By the way Noreen's book can be purchased more cheaply than Amazon - try Tesco instead - thanks Noreen. Of course Amazon may reduce the price before publication - if they get a lot of demand for it.

I intend to have a lazy weekend and do as little as possible apart from cooking. Have a good weekend everyone.

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

A new book to watch for

I am surrounded by authors!
Noreen over at Norn's Notebook (link at the top of the page) is the author of this book which will be published by the Victoria & Albert Museum in early October.
Amazon says:
'Over the last 300 years, children's clothing has witnessed a gradual shift from dressing children to adult requirements, in multiple layers and formal styles, to the booming designer childrenswear market of today. This accessible and well-illustrated dictionary features over 300 garments, from air-raid suits to zouave jackets, with specially commissioned photographs from the world's largest and most diverse collection at the V&A Museum of Childhood. A fully illustrated timeline and introduction offers an at-a-glance understanding of the changes in children's fashions and a rich selection of line drawings and illustrations from sewing and knitting patterns, to catalogues, dolls, fashion plates, photographs, paintings and children's fiction puts the garments in context.'
Knowing someone who has had books published is almost as good as having one published oneself!

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

The wanderer returns

He actually returned yesterday after saying he was all right to come home first thing in the morning when I could tell from his voice he wasn't really well. Fortunately it was going to take me about 2 hours to get there and he for some reason didn't want to go in a taxi on his own. By the time I got there the hospital were saying well you'd better have lunch first and see if you're sick again. He'd been sick 3 or 4 times on Sunday. He is definitely a lot better than he was last week but he now has loads more medication he's got to take which he's not happy about and has been told he must eat more fruit and veg and eat regular meals. I've persuaded him to give it a go, though how long it will last is anyone's guess! Sugar levels are down to pretty well what they should be as they were making sure he ate the right things. So I think that's proved to him that it can be done.

My arm seems as though it's improving still, probably because I've had someone else to take my mind off it.

Perhaps more about books tomorrow.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Sleeping better and audio books

The last couple of nights I've slept a lot better which at least makes me feel more with it.

I've been listening to 3 of BBC Radio's excellent dramatisations of Dorothy L Sayers books on CD - 'Have his Carcase', 'Gaudy Night' and 'Busman's Honeymoon' - very good they are too. I know all three books well and can identify what they missed out but they're a good substitute. I've also got 'Rumpole and the Primrose Path' to listen to. I've also found 'Ladies of Letters' - Prunella Scales and Patricia Routledge exchanging barbed correspondence very funny. Apparently this is from 'Woman's Hour' but as I'm not usually at home during the day I hadn't heard it. Audio books are well worth trying - they can be found on eBay as well.

I haven't read any more of Maloney's Law Anne because I need both hands to hold it open! I'm awaiting delivery of a 'bookchair' - a rest for books which holds them open for you. The I'll be able to read more. For the same reasons I'm finding it difficult to read P D James's 'The Private Patient.'

Onwards and upwards