A long spell in London

I spent the next two months in London!  It seemed a long time to be away from Bovey and I missed being there, but it was also good to get things done back at home.  I got completely up to date with admin and paperwork and also made progress on some of my "projects", in particular in putting all the Barnes Quarter Peals on to Bell Board.  I even finally got round to putting up the picture of the mosquito I had brought back from Devon, and straightening out the Spitfire picture (that's been waiting 9 years!).

I rather ditzily left my handbag in Bovey - at least I could confirm it was there with Peter.  So I had to manage without it for a couple of months.  The only thing I really missed was my Freedom Pass - I had to buy and Oyster card and pay for public transport!  Good for me because it made me walk more instead of jumping on the bus. It became quite liberating not having to carry a bag around - luckily my coat has big pockets!  I paid by credit card whenever possible (…

Return to Devon

I went back to Devon on Friday (5th Jan) so that I could go to Tim's handbell day the next day.   I arrived at 3 pm and had a quick chat with Malc before taking Suki out for a walk.  Peter had prepared bolognaise for supper and we had it with jacket potato.

The handbell day was good fun although I didn't like leaving Suki for so long - I ended up being longer than intended because someone was ill and I had to cover for them.  I rang 3 QPs - Cambridge Royal, Yorkshire Major and Little Bob Royal - and over the day 7 QPs were rung which had been the target.  The Cambridge Royal was a real struggle and we had so many restarts that we ran out of time for the scheduled Yorkshire Royal, but then fitted in the Yorkshire Major to keep the total for the day on schedule.

It was Suki's official birthday on Monday 8th Jan - I discovered birthday cake for dogs in the local pet shop (made primarily of lard I think) so of course I had to get it for her.  She didn't look particularly i…

2018! New Year

Got up extra early on New Year's Eve so that I could go to 8 am communion at Barnes because there wasn't a service at Chiswick.  When I got there discovered it was Matins!  Monica was there - I hadn't been expecting her but she had come back early - so we went for a lovely breakfast of porridge at Gail's after the service.  Did the ringing circuit and then came home and worked my way through the pile of stuff I had dumped in the living room the day before.  Everything had been found a place and put away by the time Mike came in from playing the organ at the convent.  I had also filed all the music away again - for a fresh start in 2018!  We were still working our way through the cheese at mealtimes.  I made a start on my own paperwork - which I wanted to clear before setting forth on Mary's probate.  There were a huge number of Christmas cards to open and log and lots of letters to scan in.

My new year's resolution is to keep an expense account for a year and I…

Christmas 2017

Christmas Newsletter 2017

On Friday I finally felt a bit Christmassy.  Mike went off to ring a peal with Bob in the morning and I put up a few Christmas decorations and picked up the meat I had ordered for Christmas lunch.

We had a quiet Christmas together.  Peter went off to stay with his parents for a few days and we spent our time going for walks with Suki - mainly Stover or Parke - and relaxing at home. The weather was quite nice - positively spring like and warm on some days. Mike finished the 1500 piece jigsaw of Westminster Abbey (the inside) - with occasional help from Peter - and then did a 1000 piece one of Westminster Abbey from the air.  This appeared to be a brand new jigsaw but annoyingly had two pieces missing (we hunted high and low but were pretty sure eventually that they hadn't just been dropped somewhere).

There were insufficient ringers to ring on Christmas Eve and if felt very odd being back home by 9 am on a Sunday morning.  We went to Midnight Mass in the e…

Goodbye Mary

We set off for Devon and became concerned by the gantries stating that there was a 3-hour delay at J 16 of the M4.  We kept going and the signs didn't change - so we used Google maps on my phone to find an alternative route.  It was really good - it didn't follow the official diversion (which was queuing from the motorway) but took us along roads which ran parallel to the motorway - bringing us back on at J18.  We only took about 40 mins longer and got to Bovey at 1.30 - giving us 15 mins for a cup of tea before our meeting with the vicar at 2.  The meeting didn't last long - everything for the funeral seemed to be in hand, even the refreshments which were being organised by the Mothers Union. Then we both took Suki for a walk in Stover before popping up to Tracey House for Mary's handbag and a few bits.

The next day was a busy one.  We had a 9.30 appointment with the Registrar in Newton Abbot to register the death, then we went to the funeral directors and agreed the…

Dash back to London

Mike found out from Tracey House that they would deal with all the arrangements once Mary has passed away, so we felt a bit more comfortable about going back to London on the Monday - we both had a full week of commitments which would have been difficult to cancel.  In particular I had to collect my printing and £500 of Amazon gift cards from the pick up locations on The Vale by Wednesday and only I could do it as I needed to produce photo ID.  Mike went to see Mary first on Monday morning while I took Suki for a walk.  I finally got the dog cage set up in the courtesy car.  Suki and I dropped in to see Mary later but I didn't stay long.  She seemed to mouth "hello" but she was very weak and dried up.  It was very sad to see her like that.  I kissed her on her forehead and told her I would miss her.  It was the last time I saw her alive.

I got back to London in the afternoon - just after Mike who had driven faster!  I wasn't needed for handbells in the evening, and t…

Back to Devon - and Mary

I decided to go back to Devon on Wednesday - I wanted to see Mary as much as possible while she was still with us.  I had to go to Ford first to pick up the diamond brite pack which had been missing on Sunday. So I got in to the car for the first time and set off.  To begin with it smelt of exhaust fumes and slightly hot burning smell and there seemed to be a lot of exhaust coming out the back. I just hoped this was because it hadn't been run for a while.  The car seemed to sense my antipathy and did things to wind me up.  The little arrow for changing gear didn't show for ages - and then suddenly there it was.  The engine didn't stop automatically when I was stationary - but then again later suddenly it did.  I filled it up with petrol - and it showed 237 miles to 0.  I was feeling upset that I wasn't going to get the same number of miles on a full tank - but by the time I got home the figure had actually gone up (and in fact by the time I got to Devon it was still sh…