Rain walk

          Note to self : if you must walk in the rain… Wear your wellies.

DSC_1925

          The weekend in Wolverhampton was always going to be a wet one.   Britain was being whipped by the tail end of storm Callum, luckily the time of year meant no snow, but there was plenty of water to go around.

          I took my mac and hat, and my camera and kept a very close eye on the weather forecast.  Saturday was originally supposed to be the wettest day, and by Sunday we were expecting some sunshine so I planned a morning in the park with the camera on Sunday before I headed off to meet up with Hubby in the sports centre. 

DSC_1947

          Well, weather forecasts and plans being what they are, Sunday morning was the wettest part of the weekend, but, over breakfast I decided to go for a walk in the park anyway.

          Yes, that’s right, I chose to go out in the rain. Something which has been sitting on “The List” waiting until I was either brave enough or stupid enough to do it.

DSC_1965

          The walk in the park was surprisingly enjoyable  I didn’t take the camera, but snapped away with my mobile phone as the colours caught my eye, or if something made me smile.

          Underneath my mac and brolly, I stayed pretty dry… Except for my feet… My boots did quite well, but they’re just boots, I should definitely have taken my wellies. 

          I waited for Hubby at the sports centre, I chatted to a few of the other players and spectators, and by the time we were ready to leave, I climbed into the car with more water on the inside of my boots than on the outside.

DSC_1971

          As we drove home, my feet got colder and colder in my wet boots and I started to remember how old I was and why I don’t walk in the sea anymore. My rheumatism was really going to make me pay later if I didn’t do something soon.

          I could have just put the heating up and aimed it at my feet, but at the thought of Hubby falling asleep at the wheel I dismissed that option.

          My biggest problem were the cold, wet boots so I took them off, and abandoned the socks which were holding onto the water.  I rubbed some feeling back into my feet and squeezed them into my fingerless gloves…. No photo here, I’m afraid you’ll have to use your imagination.

          With some heat and circulation restored, my next challenge was how to keep it there…

          I put my purse and phone onto the floor next to me… And pushed my feet into my handbag, then I tipped my seat back to my preferred travelling position… And slept the journey home. . 

DSC_1934

          More from before : Wandering in “Wolverhampton“, Octobers ’15 & ’18. 

Advertisements

Water in West Park

DSC_1968

          More from before : Wandering in “Wolverhampton“, Octobers ’15 & ’18. 

ROCKCHOIR Wolverhampton

           I was wandering around Wolverhampton town centre on one of Hubby’s sport weekends, my “bubble” was squeezed so tightly around me that it was almost suffocating, so I sought out the familiarity of the shopping centres.

          A maze of the regular brand names stretched before me, escalators climbed from one floor to another and as much as every shopping center is different, it’s comforting to know that they’re all essentially the same.

          I found a very welcome distraction today though. The shoppers were treated to a performance by the “ROCKCHOIR“, and of course, I couldn’t resist taking a few pictures.

DSC_1909

DSC_1894

DSC_1890

DSC_1905

          Thanks guys, you raised a few smiles from more than just me with your performance.

          More from before : Wandering in “Wolverhampton“, Octobers ’15 & ’18. 

Dream

          Do you visit the same “Dreamscapes” again and again ?

          I do, and in one of my dreams I’m a teenager, my teenage years weren’t as I would have liked them to be, but they weren’t as they are in my dream either.

          The day of my dream this time was my last day in school, there was an end of term event arranged, there was to be a big-wig visit at the school and, needless to say, everyone was pulling out all of the stops to impress.

          Everyone except me, of course.  In real life I wasn’t an ideal student, but I behaved (most of the time) but in my dream I hadn’t even been to school for most of the previous two years. I was holding down a job in a café and living in my own little rented room.

          On the big day, my presence had been “requested”, and for some reason I had decided to attend.

          On the morning of “the day” I had woken up late and had had to rummage around looking for something which vaguely resembled school uniform to wear. My real secondary school uniform used to be navy and on this occasion in my dream I had managed to find a rather creased navy skirt and a navy ‘v’ neck jumper, no shirt and tie, I found a white round neck t-shirt and having no clean socks or tights around, I just slipped on my old black (surprisingly comfortable) school shoes.

          At first I was riding a bike along familiar dreamscape pavements and footpaths. I had a basket on the front of my pushbike which appeared to be full of household items, if I’m remembering rightly from many other dreams before, my room wasn’t exactly secure and if treasured belongings weren’t bolted down, they were better off kept close.

          My basket was piled high and I struggled to see over the top. For some reason I had a pink inflatable chair jammed into the top, it was one of those see-through ones and I kept having to look through it.  I hit on the idea of popping off the valve and letting the chair deflate so that I could see over it… All while pedaling along at full pelt because I was late.

          I freewheeled downhill past a row of houses on my left.  Again, I’ve passed these houses in dreamland many times before, they were on a hill and little steps wound their way through pretty flowers down towards the road, dissappearing behind a tall wall which held the gardens in place and popping out along the pavement via little gates.

          I rode on the pavement in the narrow gap between the wall and the parked cars with two wheels up on the curb as the narrow road curved around to the left with no indication of what was to follow but I negotiated the gap well as I’ve ridden here often.

          Soon I turned off to a well trodden footpath at the side of the road, through a wide open gateway and across the downward sloping field, until the path entered a small wooded area. At first I could see the style blocking my way, in previous dreams I’ve climbed the style, but this time, in the blink of an eye I was on the other side and heading towards the village at the bottom of the hill.

          Reality pulled at the dreamscape as I rode along the road to go into my old  school, past the first entrance on the right, turning into the second one, where I’d been told many a time to dismount. I didn’t, I turned left and skirted around the building to my right to arrive at the bike racks.

          Reality lost its grip again and I loaded the contents of my basket onto a trolly, not the supermarket type shopping trolly, more like the ones the supermarket staff use, with a base, a back and two sides, and a flat top to work on.

          Considering what a sight I must have made, a scruffy looking little urchin, with tatty hair only half a uniform, nobody took much notice of me at all as I made my way around the school. It seemed I was either invisible , or just insignificant. Either way I didn’t mind, each in their way provided me with a feeling of protection.

          The school, even though I had entered through my old school gates, the school grounds held no resemblance to my old school whatsoever the outside was prettily landscaped and very well looked after.  The inside though was still quite shabby, sort of “comfortably lived in”.

          Seeming to know where I was going, I made my way to an old dusty corridor, and came to a door, a discoloured white painted door with the white paint peeling off to show that it was once painted a dark blue.  Not a full size door, about three to four feet high and two and a half wide. I opened it, pushed in the trolly and climbed in next to it… As you do in dreams… It would appear to have been a lift of some sort, I climbed out into a different level and continued on my way with my trolly.

          I came outside into sunlight shining on manicured gardens, and pushed my way in between some shrubbery where I found another cupboard doorway. It opened easily enough and I pushed my trolly in. The lift didn’t work so I stashed my trolly inside and cambered up the bank next to a man-made rockface water feature.  As a teenager, the tomboy in me wouldn’t have given a second thought to clambering up the bank instead of using a path or lift so this isn’t as dreamlike as it sounds.

          The dream skips a bit next because I find myself sitting on an old corderoy sofa in possibly a staff room. Sitting on the other end of the sofa was, I think, my old physics teacher. We had come to an understanding in our physics lessons many moons ago. I was there on protest because I “needed” a science in my schooling. I had no interest in science whatsoever and had made that plain on many occasions by my work levels and test results, I was there because I had to be, not because I wanted to be.   It was agreed that I wouldn’t disrupt the lesson and in return I could use the lesson to do homework for other lessons.  As bad as this sounds from a teaching point of view, once the pressure was off to actually do any work, you’d be surprised how much physics I learnt, and how much of what I learnt I can still remember today.

          Anyway, my mind wanders, so back to the dream.  Sitting in the staff room on the comfy sofa seemed safe, especially when another teacher came in.  She was a young, lady teacher, my year one English teacher I think.  Again I can’t remember what the real teacher looked like, but she was very patient with my bad spelling, bad grammar and, well, basically bad English in general. I wrote her an essay which, although was supposed to be a weekend task, took me well over a week as homework and earned me my one and only “A” in my schoolwork. OK, so it was an “A-“, but still an “A”.

          I don’t think I ever set foot in the staffroom at school, too many teachers, but I liked the staffroom in my dream, and seemed to stay for a while.  Eventually though, my time there came to an end when a young boy, probably a first year, came looking for me by name and rather than cause him to get in trouble I went with him.

          Clambering down the bank wasn’t an option for him, his uniform was beautifully clean and neatly pressed, so I climbed down the man-made wall and he walked around the obstacle and met me at the bottom by which time I had retrieved my trolley from its hiding place. I followed him to the grand hall where a seat had been saved for me by one of the small group of others who tolerated my friendship.

          In a hall of first class students, all dressed in smart uniforms, all soaking up whatever words were offered to them, I sat like a miniature bag lady… Bored out of my tiny little mind.

          I couldn’t take my camera into my dream, so here’s a picture of a real memory from my teenage years instead.

          “Secluded steps” .

2014-11. Steps.

BRAINS

          I went for a long weekend with Little Sister a while ago, I travelled by train and she picked me up from the carpark at the back of Cardiff Central Station.

          From the carpark, the skyline is pretty much dominated by the BRAINS brewery building. 

DSC_1795

          Most things look so different when viewed in a nicer light, even old industrial buildings like the brewery, and this disused colliery I found in “Pleasley“. 

          More from before : various visits to “Cardiff” .

Stepping up

          Do you remember how slowly the garden was moving along with just “Small steps“, and one step at a time at that.  My planned steps with bricks for foundations turned out to be a non-starter, the builder said each brick would have to be cemented in to make the foundation firm, then there would still be a worry that a loose brick at a later time would send someone tumbling down to the bottom  … So back to the drawing board they went. 

2018-05. Brick steps.

          Eventually the “Building of the garden” was finished.  The steps were pretty much the last bit the builder made, I had thrown the old bricks back onto the top level and he built the steps by making a breeze block framework and using up as many of my old bricks as he could mixed with his cement to fill the middle. 

DSC_0849

          The shed door opens outwards at the moment, backing onto the bottom step and the builder had built the steps shorter than I had planned so that the door would open further.  I’ve been managing them fine even though they were steeper than I had originally laid out with my brick foundations, but I’m planning on getting old here and I became less and less happy with them.  Looking back at the photo I took of the “Viewpoint” in the mirror, you can see just how steep they were. 

DSC_1468

          I had plenty of paint, and time to paint the steps with the same white paint as the walls.  I know the white paint would get very dirty underfoot, but it’s to be just an undercoat for a darker colour so that didn’t matter, but I’ve known myself a long time, and when I kept putting off painting them, I knew they would have to change.

IMG-20180828-WA0009

          I contacted the builder again on two counts, one of the back walls had developed a gap where it met the side wall, and I asked for a quote at the same time to change the slope on my steps.

         He came and fixed the wall … And the steps too … With no extra charge. . 

DSC_1712

         A couple of coats of white paint made such a difference, to the steps, and the wall behind it, and a matchpot tester of terracotta decided the colour for both sets of steps.

2018-08. Garden matchpot steps.

          We bought a black metal hand rail to fix onto the shed wall and some more terracotta coloured paint for the top and front of the steps.

2018-10. Steps handrail.

          I liked the extra colour that the terracotta paint brought to the steps and painted the front walls of the flowerbes and the bench seats too.  There’s another coat of paint needed on the bench seats and then it will be time for their wooden bench tops.

          We’re almost there, the shed door still needs changing, the crazy patio is to be leveled and cemented in.  There are a few patches of the concrete in the small yard which need attention at the same time as the shed step, and we’ve bought some slate grey garage floor paint to spruce up the yard and the shed path.

          It’s going to be raining tomorrow, a problem I’m going to encounter more as the season moves on, but if we’re not ready by spring, then we’ll definitely be sitting out in the garden on deckchairs next summer.

          More “Fixings and finishings” and going’s on in my “Garden“. 

Greatness

          On the scale of greatness, I’m just getting greater and greater.

          There was first a great Niece… 

2011-10. Baby blanket.

          Then another great Niece… 

2013-03. Baby blanket.

          A great Nephew… 

DSC_0206

          And another great Nephew… 

dsc_0016_2

          And now another great Niece… 

DSC_1643

         Five little bundles full of mostly laughter and smiles. 

          More from before: A little peek further into the world that I’ve “Created“.