Welcome to Down The Lane

10th - 22nd. July 2006

Cricket has once again been at the forefront of things for the past two weeks. The England A v Pakistan game went without a hitch (with the exception of Matthew Hoggards injury).

This past week we played Lancashire and it gave me a chance of 'hosting the likes of Andrew Flintoff, Mahmmod, Cork, Chapple and a few other big names.

This caused much media interest and I was forever going up and down the stairs with questions from the press, one question of which I refused. A TV programme wanted to know if someone had a blister. I explained that if I asked such a question, there would be a strong possibility of me returning with a Cricket Bat placed somewhere which would cause me much pain !

This week I've a England Under 19 Test Match, then Hampshire with Shane Warne for 6 days. I don't mind that though, Shane Warne is one of the most professional cricketers I have met to date and it's a real experience seeing him going about his business. 10th - 22nd. July 2006

Today, I'm at home and this began with me losing a tooth. Well, I didn't lose it, it fell out - ironically whilst cleaning my teeth. I blame it onto Gypsy Tarts and Treacle Pies fed to us a'plenty back in the 50's.

I could go along the lines that it's a frugal plan of mine and say the less teeth you have, the less money you're spending on them - or, think of the toothpaste savings. But I can't, they're just old and dropping out !

At least my grand-daughter Emily will be happy. She shows great interest in examining my teeth every time I go down there.

Obviously destined to become a Dentist. The last time one fell out I asked Thomas if he'd like to put it under his pillow for the Tooth Fairy. He took one long hard look and said "No".

Yesterday evening I found a wasps nest in the border next to the runner beans. Regret to say I found it by the fact I was stung once on the left foot, twice on the right and once on the hand. All in all, I'm a total wreck today !

With all this cricket at the moment, the veggies have been hard to keep up with. The drought seems to be suiting the sweet corn and the carrots. The theory is that roots get longer because they're working downwards to find moisture.

The cabbages are looking a bit worse for wear and although we're getting runner beans, they are not as leafy as previous years. It's just a case of using every spare bit of water wherever and whenever you can.

On the weather and a more serious note, I met a person the other day with skin cancer and it certainly brought home to me the importance of looking after ourselves in this weather. Maybe the occasional slip up and burn is OK, but on a regular basis, it can be so dangerous

Yesterday evening I found a wasps nest in the border next to the runner beans. Regret to say I found it by the fact I was stung once on the left foot, twice on the right and once on the hand. All in all, I'm a total wreck today !

With all this cricket at the moment, the veggies have been hard to keep up with. The drought seems to be suiting the sweet corn and the carrots. The theory is that roots get longer because they're working downwards to find moisture.

The cabbages are looking a bit worse for wear and although we're getting runner beans, they are not as leafy as previous years. It's just a case of using every spare bit of water wherever and whenever you can.

On the weather and a more serious note, I met a person the other day with skin cancer and it certainly brought home to me the importance of looking after ourselves in this weather. Maybe the occasional slip up and burn is OK, but on a regular basis, it can be so dangerous

The Cricket Club use MacMillan nurses to inspect the players, ground staff (and me) each year for skin cancer, looking for any symptons. I guess if you're fielding for 7/8 hours a day in 30 degrees plus, it's a worry. As indeed it should be to those experiencing downshifting and spending more time out and about maybe.

Tomorrow I go and see the Doctor. With this heat and running around I'm doing, he won't sign me off, he'll probably write me off ! I'm thin at the best of times - but still the same weight I was at 19, 40 years ago. It would appear I may have a detached retina which could lead to an operation, we'll see - no worries as the Ozzies say.

So, I'm half way through the busiest time I've had and between now and 12th. August I have two days off. Hopefully these will be slightly shorter than last week when I didn't even bother coing home for two nights.

But Autumn is around the corner and I need a good financial start to it this yea

25th June - 10th July 2006

One day late !

Three words best describe the last two weeks; Cricket, cricket and cricket, with a few bits squeezed between. This has incurred a few good experiences though. It's crickets 'twenty/20 time. We had three games at Beckenham (winning them all) and I went with the Team to Lords, a great experience for me.

I managed to film a few bits at Lords (see video clip on right). Being a lover of the great game, it was almost an honour to spend time in the dressing room and on the boundary ropes. Just thinking of all the enormous names and matches which have been played there is something else.

The last 5 days have been spent with the England 'A' and Pakistan teams at Canterbury. Again, a good experience to meet so many players past and present.

We have another cat! 'Ronnie' was looking for a new home and found us. He's about 5 years old and weighs about the same as our other two put together. There's a few punch ups between himself and Ginger, but otherwise he's settling in well and enjoying exploration of the garden and surroundings. There's a glimpse of him in this months video clip.

With my increased size website hosting, I've sorted out all the video and audio files and put them all on the new Multimedia Page. Link on left. This also includes the Radio Kent 'Odd Job Bod' with yours truly from the last entry.

On 25th.June the whole family made their way to my brothers Pub, the Sloop Inn, for my Mothers 81st.birthday. This enabled me to see some of them for the first time in exactly a year. Luckily my brother didn't ask me to play cricket again this year. I can still only bend my right index finger halfway from it being broken last year!

Leo has gone to Spain for a week with his girlfriend, seems only last month he was playing Lego and watching Thunderbirds. Now it's playing guitar and watching I don't know what on DVD! Grandson Thomas has reached the grand age of 5, Leo and Vicky have birthdays next week (the same day!). So the extra work has come in very handy.

Meanwhile the chicken have missed me greatly and the sound of them trying to climb the fence as I drive up the Lane at 7.00am is quite emotional for me. Although it could just be the sound of them gorging into breakfast and the left overs from cricket the day before. One of the new ones has gone broody and protecting her, and others, eggs with vicious pecks every time I try to retrieve them from under her.

I've eaten the first runner beans of the season, had a few meals with the broad beans and eagerly awaiting the potatoes which should be ready by the end of this week. If you don't care too much for broad beans, try peeling off the hard outer 'cases' and eat them - they have a wonderful sweet flavout to them.

So, starting Wednesday I have 6 days off. Well, I've got a large wardrobe to assemble and lay some laminate in a kitchen for a customer of mine - not my favourite job. Somehow I've got to get my own garden up to scratch. I have done some work at 6am and even some under PIR light at 11pm! This is downshifting? Taking an easier life !!! It's a good thing I love my cricket, my garden and my family isn't it. I could of course become an International singing artist. I reckon I could earn a fortune. Just a pity I'm no good.

The next door neighbours had their first baby yesterday so I'm looking forward to my early morning call at about half past two, half past three, half past four......! I'm sure Harry is lovely and good luck to them all.

Never mind, during the day a Cream or a John Mayalls Bluesbreakers Album should produce the right remedy - or I can always go and talk to the chickens. I find my theory on life and the universe is quite interesting to them. It must be - they never answer back!

Enjoy the summer whilst I can is the motto at present. Before we know it Autumn and winter will once again be upon us. Every year we're one year older; as are the bones and memories. Don't waste anything !

Going back to look at the future


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