Archive for July, 2014

When I was a lad all those many years ago, I used to live for the Summer hols. As a family we used to holiday regularly first in North Wales then when I was a few years older in a Gite/cottage in Brittany.  Coming back from these holidays was always quite a sad experience for me as I really loved those family “trerts” but what used to really piss me off was from about the 10th of August and still with 3-4 weeks to go that dreaded image in WH Smiths and other shops with a group of falsely smiling children all smartly attired in pristine school uniform under a banner that read “BACK TO SCHOOL”.

Man did that really give me the pip and put a downer on the rest of my time off. Thoughts of homework not even looked at and that ominous creeping deadline began to grow in my mind like some sort of malignant canker (not helped by the old mans increasingly frequent little digs about whether I had done my homework “accurately and neatly” and helpfully reminding me that if I had done it at the start of the holidays how much better I would be feeling about it now………………….

So you can imagine the tirade of expletives that came out of my mouth when just last weekend, in July (YES July!) only one week into the traditional hols E-BAY put up a banner on the website.

 I left school in the last century but it still winds me up big time. So without any further ado – “FFS Murray” 

Haut Couture 15C style - Milanese Harness

Haut Couture 15C style – Milanese Harness

I really REALLY need a Squire. No one told me all those years ago about the dark contract you enter into when purchasing a suit of armour. Having last worn this almost 2 years to the day it had been sitting silently in my front room gathering no more than a few specks of dust………or so I thought.  Last week I suddenly found myself volunteered to don the old harness one more time for the local village fiesta/fayre.

I didn’t think much about it at the time, apart from wondering whether it would still fit (these metal beasts have a habit of shrinking when not worn a short chap by the name of Rumplestiltkin told me a while back………. ) So when I started to unpack the bits and pieces imagine the shock when suddenly confronted with that horrible realisation and one I had naively forgotten about.  Yes ye olde Mr Rust had been working his evil magic through 5 stone/30 Kilo’s of a young Agnetha Faltscog equivalent in armour terms.

Starting on Saturday and just finishing today Wednesday as we speak, its taken I don’t know how much metal polish and elbow grease to bring it back to its former glory. I’ve even lost the fingerprints on my index finger for my troubles. Still looking at it now. it was worth it.

Sallet & bevor - more than a passing resemblance to a Cylon? You frakking better believe it!

Sallet & bevor – more than a passing resemblance to a Cylon? You frakking better believe it!

We’ll use the old ways……….SPEED OF HORSE!









At long last, the BBC have released the official full-length trailer for Series 8 and it’s such a tease. They released it during the BBC’s World Cup coverage, which is fantastic. Must’ve been great publicity. Cannot wait for August 23rd any longer! The first episode, Deep Breath, is said to be a 75-79 minute spectacular. What do y guys think? Shall we truly go “into darkness?” Is the Doctor a good man? How excited are you for the new season to start?

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IMG_3162 (800x600)With those doctored immortal words from Professor Farnsworth ringing in my ears its time to enthuse. Following nationwide coverage in the Daily Telegraph in May, those rather clever chaps at Davenport vineyards have now released their 2013 vintages. Horsmonden White and in what can best be described as what Chas is to Morph, its cheeky little cousin Diamond Fields Rose. Quintessentially English and organic to boot those summer days and evenings sitting in the garden dining al fresco just got a whole lot more interesting (especially as writing this today happens to be one of my penitential wine free nights……..grrrrr).

But thats not all, their rather fetching 2009 Limney Sparkling wine made from grapes picked at the Rotherfield site has just won the prestigious  Vintners Trophy for best UK Sparkling Wine. Not cheap but if you want a change from Champagne or Prosecco this is definitely worth a punt.

More deets on their website – and I am informed they’re even on that not so new new fangled Twitter thing as well.

And if you want to meet the guys, you can as they’ll be at the Rotherfield Fiesta on the 19th July, part of a three day celebration about all that’s good in Rotherfield and East Sussex and all for a good cause.


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Having helped pick my share of the 26 or so tonnes of grapes last year the weather this year looks likely to have an even larger bumper crop so its time to stock-pile the atomic strength co-codamol back pain tablets.