26th.February - 12th.March 2007

I avoid, as much as possible, not wishing the month's of January and February to pass by quickly. Every month should be of equality and by longing for something to pass, is longing for your time to go by quicker.
But March arrives and it's a whole new beginning. There's much to do outside, work is plentiful, it's my birthday and the Cricket season begins.
It's like jumping from a cold bath into a hot one, from one life to the next!

I've just about wrapped up the big decorating job in Minster, the last three days there being spent leaning over tins of gloss paint. At least I slept well every night!

This weekend has been really good to Kent weatherwise and I spent all day yesterday in the garden on various jobs.
I finally got around to fixing the greenhouse. I managed to fix about half of it, but ran out of sellotape and string!
My great great grandfather, Charles Fowler, was Architect for Sion House Conservatory and various other major heritage buildings. I think he would be quite proud of me.
I made a good job of putting the greenhouse together some 5 years ago. The base is absolutely rock solid and steady. It's just the top has moved about 5" to the left

I sowed some carrots and lettuce yesterday. The Rocket from last year has self seeded in the other greenhouse and really springing up.
I was going to put the onions in as well yesterday but deemed the soil a bit too wet still.

We've four Robins in the front garden at the moment, nosey little things, always following you about to see what you're up to. The Blue Tits are quite abundant as well and the songs they all sing early morning and at sunset are beautiful. Even the Magpies are behaving themselves and seem to be more interested in what the Squirrels are getting up to.
After being attacked by one last year, Ginger the Cat also gives them a wide berth when up the garden.
The chickens have gone completely mad and I'm getting 6 / 7 eggs a day from the nine of them (one of them sadly died two weeks ago). Not bad though as they're ex-battery hens mainly and all must be at least 3 years old now, some maybe 5!

It's strange how the weather affects our movitation. I've been so busy at home between the other jobs and have cut down most of the ivy around the house, fixed the gates, cleaned the windows and only fell over a cat once last week.

Today, I donned the Kent Cricket Kit and returned to Canterbury in dressing room mode. With the sun shining and a very comfortable 16 degrees, it was odd not to see the players out on the pitch.
Slowly they trickle back from all four corners of the planet and I'm sure there will be much conversation and catching up on the plane to La Manga this coming Sunday.
It's really nice to be going back there again. I don't have a guilty consience either! With me there to drive the mini-bus around the complex and sort the lunches out plus some other 'gofor' duties, it frees the coaching staff to do what they are best at.
Some five years ago I seriously thought I may never go abroad again, other than the occasional day trip on the Ferry. But since then, I've worked in France for a week decorating a holiday home (not mine!) and gone to Spain twice.
It just goes to show that you simply never know what's in stall, there are some bad things, but these are easily balanced out with the good.

I am not too sad about being unable to complete my black bitumin paint job around the main Grandstand though. After reading the back of the tin and seeing the assortment of major ailments the fumes may cause, I broke off every hour to have a roll up on the principle that it was the healthier option!

Finacially things are a lot better than they were. With the much appreciated work from the Club and senior colleague at Minster, the phone hasn't gone once for a week now - and I've even managed to pay the phone bill!
Leo's job in the 'up-market' Restaurant has also eased things for me a bit. I'm not out of the trees yet, but they're getting smaller and I can see the edge - almost!

I'm watching the new series of 'Castaway' with interest. I already see that the enphasis appears to have moved from sef sufficiency to more a mixture of 'Big Brother' and I'm a celebrity, get me out of here'.
Maybe it's too early to make any rash statements, but the mixture of characters put together does seem to be asking for the Tabloid press to dig up whatever they can find.
It's good however to see that people are obviously going to find out a lot about themselves and how a more 'escapist' life can be just the tonic for better living.
Let's hope so!

12th - 26th. February 2007

A very busy and hectic two weeks. Last weekend's weather enabled me to get stuck into outdoor work at home. I dug an area and sowed the broad beans, cleaned out the chicken shed 'A1 category', collected about three weeks worth of wood, sawed it all up and still had time to have a grand bonfire of universial proportions.

The week before that I was decorating at the Cricket Club all week and the last week has been spent with a couple of days at the Club, then starting my decorating job in Minster.
I have to admit I've found the work there quite difficult this week. The plaster is brand new and the thinned down first coat dried after about 10 seconds and caused me much grief. There are six areas to do including two hall, stairs and landings, so this week I'm with camp bed and a moped full of food.

It's amusing planning the trips by moped, it's the only form of vehicle, beside a bike I guess, where you have to take wind direction into account. The two days I went to Minster there and back, because of a fairly strong northerly wind, took me 57 minutes to get there and 75 coming back!
The poor little thing was sounding a little worse for wear yesterday, so I gave it an oil change today - now she's purring.
Yesterday, the chap over the Lane said he didn't want to disturb me because he could hear me strimming - it was the moped!

I even managed 4 hours working over the Lane yesterday, again clearing the banks along the side of the stream. I must admit to finding it quite therapeutic and get a lot of thinking done.
The same though applies to decorating and I'm intriqued with two 'senior' ladies who live in the house at the back of the Minster job. It's not that I'm nosey, but they sit in their Sunhouse every morning with one broadsheet and one tabloid paper sipping cups of tea or coffee, then swap over the papers etc (imagine it's The Telegraph and Express!).
But thoughts go through your mind like what has been their experiences to bring them to where they are. All sorts of short stories go through your mind. Expect a Blog entry when I come back!

The chickens are laying again!! This week has been about three a day. I have two 'pedigrees' in amongst my ex-batts, a Sussex Star and a Black Rock. The Black Rock lays eggs are a work of art to me, natures absolute brilliant best. They're pure terracota colour and always the perfect shape.
You could put them in egg cups and just have them as ornaments (I'll be after the Turner Prize at this rate).
All the chooks are looking really healthy at present and seem quite happy with life. At the moment they're using the large shed (with the nest boxes in) to sleep and the other smaller shed, designed for sleeping, to lay in!
They're obviously being difficult because it means a slippery dangerous walk through the mud for egg retrieval. Some would call it clucking you hear as you nearly sprain your ankle keeping balance - I call it sniggering!

Talking of ex-battery hens, forumer Wendy has sent an article in about her hens. You find the link at the top right of this page.

I was quite pleased with myself last week. The site suddenly got, in about 4 days, over 1500 hits above normal. It appeared that the BBC put a link called 'Dragons Den ideas' on their main BB2 page and linked it to the Blog entry. At last, my 15 minutes of fame!
A discount on my TV Licence wouldn't go amiss would it!

Leo's picked up a part-time job at a local Restaurant, so with three days College as well, he'll be out much of the time now and hopefully afford the bus fares!

I promised myself a day off today, but alas there were things to be done again outside. I haven't got round to replacing the glass lost in the greenhouse by the high winds a few weeks ago, but at least I found on piece of the plastic sheet glass this morning. It was lodged in a tree at least 200 meters from here. And what a bounty, whilst going into the depths of wood to get it, I came accross an old really nice shaped bucket which is now pride of place in the shed awaiting something to go in it.
Certainly Spring is in the air down here, even Mimi and Ginger the cats have stayed out for more than two minute intervals over the last week. Big Ron spends most of his life outside though. Last night we were 'presented' with a rabbit. What can you do?

Well, I shall now go and fill the Moped up. I love saying "Fill her up please" at the local olde Petrol Station and the "That'll be £2.75 please Sir". Magic.
After that I feel a Blog entry about Trainspotters coming on, I must pack my things for the Minster Expedition and round things off with a nice hot bath lazing away with my home made honey soap kindly sent to me by a kind Forumer.

Why? Because I'm worth it!!

Going back to look at the future

Full Website