We couldn’t join them, sadly, but Martha and William went swimming in a pool for the first time since the lockdown started in March. We did enjoy watching the videos of them playing in the water, swimming, jumping in and even diving to the bottom to pick up objects, something I’ve never been able to do.
Martha and William weren’t the only ones to get wet this week. We all did. It rained. And it rained. A lot. Storm Francis got the blame, it brought strong winds and a lot of rain. So we didn’t go out every single day this week. Which was OK, we had plenty to do indoors, but it’s just so disheartening when every time you look out of the window, it’s grey and rainy: early onset November. Liesel finished her first crochet blanket and it looks really good.
I was especially impressed with the fringe around the edges, a very professional finish. Liesel has now started on a second one, with a different combination of yarn colours.
We visited Lyme Park despite the threat of rain. It held off mostly on this occasion, and we had a very pleasant walk, if a little shorter than usual.
No doubt, if William had been with us, he would have been up this ladder like a shot.
We have no idea what these flowers are, but when our botanical expert lets us know, I’ll amend this caption.
Helen has been in touch, thanks. She says: I think the plant might be a viburnum. The RHS website describes 439!
This fella’s fish was spouting a very weak column of water. We have no idea who he is or what he represents, but as soon as our ornamental fountain expert lets us know, I’ll amend this caption.
Unexpectedly, as we bought our coffees just before leaving, a lovely patch of blue sky appeared. It didn’t last long, but it cheered us up.
Our next trip was to Biddulph Grange Gardens, a National Trust property that we’d not visited previously. By coincidence, Jenny and Liam had been a few days earlier, with Martha and William. Today, it rained on us pretty much all the time.
There’s a one-way system in place around the grounds, but one couple were backtracking in a hurry, presumably some sort of biological emergency.
Obviously, even monkey puzzle trees have to start life as a seed, but I’d never seen one this small before. Very cute and I’m sure we’ll be back in 70 years time to see it fully grown.
These tiles probably look very attractive on a dry, sunny day, but thery’re not as pretty covered in wet, muddy footprints.
This bridge reminded us of those we’d seen in Japan, but in fact, it’s part of the Chinese area here. I think the one-way system meant that we couldn’t see all the various gardens at their best. But we had a very pleasant walk, and it’s easy to see why Martha and William thought it was a big adventure playground, with lots of steps and other obstacles to climb.
The funny (?) thing is that by following the correct route, and choosing not to go into and through the house, we found ourselves at the exit with no way to go back and invest in a nice warming beverage.
Back in Northenden this very morning, we did go for a walk locally. It was unexpectedly cold and we could tell from the puddles and the very high, fast-flowing river, it must have been raining a lot lately. You don’t say! The canoeists weren’t deterred though, but they had combined two vessels together for stability, as they drifted downstream: not a lot of paddling going on today, it really wasn’t necessary.
As we walked along the river on the high bank, an Indian lady was walking fast on the lower bank. I tried to capture her speed in a photo but it didn’t really work out, did it?
Presumably this gathering by the riverside was illegal, but even so, that’s no excuse for not taking your empties home.
Fifty years and nine days after Whispering Bob Harris first took to the airwaves on BBC Radio 1, Mick here took to the airwaves of our local, community, isolation station, Radio Northenden. It was also, by chance, the 100th show broadcast on this wonderful little station, and you can listen to them all here. Specifically, if you would like to hear my first show, listen here.
For the last few weeks, I’ve been busy learning new software, talking to myself, choosing music, practicing, rehearsing, reading books, talking to professionals, compiling pre-flight check-lists, trying to soak it all up. So here I am, broadcasting to a small but perfectly formed audience. During the first show, of course there were a couple of mistakes, but nothing too embarrassing, and, at the time of writing, no complaints have been made to Ofcom.
I look forward to next week’s difficult second show, and if you’d like to join me on Friday between 2 and 4pm, please do, from here, or download the Mixlr app on your phone or other device, and search for Radio Northenden. If you register, I’ll see your name on the list of visitors and I might even say hello.
It was good fun, it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time: I did write to a Hospital Radio station 25 years ago, but they never got back to me.
Mick the Knife aka Mick the DJ.