A bit nippy in West Yorkshire. Lovely to meet up with Archie and Meriel who came to help. Frosty morning. Lots to sort out as usual. Trying to make the walls more viewable for a survey. Piling books up - taking down shelves - etc. Filling bags of rubbish. Filled four wheelie bins. That must be over 24 so far. Piles for charity shops and the tip. Nice steamed buns in the local pub - a bit rowdy but good fun. Also excellent chinese takeaway the following evening. Nice to be home again though.
Braved the elements to drive over to Alsager on Sunday for lunch with old friends Tone and Pene. Torrential rain and spray from other vehicles - massive puddles - plenty of Sunday drivers doing stupid things. Got there unscathed. Delicious lunch and chats. Too wet for a walk so we played a silly board game called The Roman Game - a cross between Ludo and Lacrosse? We even had some crackers to pull and party poppers to shoot over the strings that were left over from last Xmas. What fun!
Going to Nantwich is always fun and sometimes we find bargains in the many charity shops , antique fairs and the market. Today was no exception - a nice old postcard of Southend Pier (which I probably have already) for a quid in the antique fair ( £1.50 to get in) . Hazel bought a few things - most of which are secret. We parted company to do our seperate wanderings around the shops. I found a DVD of "Klute" with Donald Sutherland which I remember vaguely being good back in the day. Only £1.99 from the Oxfam shop. They do seem to have better quality films and books than most of the other charity shops. Hoping the framing man in the market would have some tin toys but most of the nice ones he was keeping for himself! This has become a bit of a running joke now - every time we go we pick something out and he says "Er, no I'm keeping that one!" He makes most of his money from framing which is just as well! Popped into the Works for some blank cards and envelopes which will be transformed miraculously into this years Xmas cards. Home via the hospice shop near Winsford. Nothing for me but Hazel bought a book to cut up for collages.
Sunny morning walk to the community orchard and the fishy ponds near the River Dane. An old chap with a dog was sitting in the orchard on the bench. He said he likes to come and enjoy the quiet and fresh air. We do too we said. He said his dogs name was Digger but mostly called Swampdog as he liked to jump in the river after ducks. Lots of geese flying over - heading South. Swans looked healthy and enjoyed the bread we took along . Tried out some apps on this new Samsung phone.
After dropping off some donations to the hospice and cancer charity shops we popped over to Rod's Secret Garden to see Mike syphon the wine and gin mix we made a month ago into small bottles to distribute to those who took part. Had a few sips of the fermented brew which was very tasty and those who tried it seemed very pleased and a little tipsy! Hazel had a tiny sip as she was driving. Wine tends to go straight to her head so very wise move!
Pleasant wander around the Abbeywood Gardens which are free to get in at the moment just for November and December. Not really much to see but tons of geese flying over and some sheep, chickens and ducks to talk to. Nice de-caff coffee in the friendly cafe when the weather took a turn for the worst. sat by a roaring log fire on a very comfy leather sofa. Afterwards a quick look round the antique emporiums at Blakemere. No bargains to be had.
Gosh - time flies when you are having fun! 40 years ago was our first date at a bonfire party in Alsager where Hazel wasa student doing her degree at MMU. Here we are all these years later. Here are the collaged cards we made each other. You can see we are well matched - both nutty as fruitcakes! Shame it rained most of the time. We did find time to go for a nice meal at resturant in Marsden. More sorting to do at Dave and Mo's. Will it ever end? Still tons of magazines and books to find homes for. Found two old digital cameras to play with. Test shots -
A ride over to Tattenhall via the scary Corkscrew Lane to visit old chums Simon and Beth. Went for a drive with them to a nearby village to post a parcel and have a little walk. Sat in car and used handy binoculars to spot a wind farm in the far distance. The pillar box outside the post office had a knitted hat with a pheasant on top ( or was it a pigeon?).
A kind of diary, a log, a ramble, nothing to do with the Flowerpot Men. My life as an artist, a collagist, a rubber stamper, a networker, a collector of all sorts , a letter writer and a postcard maker. Observations about this and that in no particular order.
I grew up in the home counties around London during the 50's and 60's. Went to several art schools including Southend ,Chelsea and Manchester. Trained as a painter and printmaker but now mostly using collage. Collect novelty songs and old mail art amongst other things too numerous to mention.