Saturday 27 December 2014

Happy Christmas - it was

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and are continuing the festivities. We had a last minute panic waiting for the gas man to fix our fire before we could travel off to deliver presents.  If he couldn't come on the 23 December we would be waiting until after 05 January but it all worked out and we spent a peaceful Christmas in our new home, complete with fully operational fire.
Mr FF and I were concerned that we'd have to up the budget this year but with only slight overspending on his part we managed to produce a £5 stocking for each other.  His contained only one sock as I didn't finish the second until Boxing Day but I did find a 500g bag West Yorkshire Spinners grey dk in a charity shop that will produce several pairs of socks or scarves.  
I also found him some lovely charity postcards depicting stages of this years Tour de France through Yorkshire and a book that might help him in his current quest for the perfect pork pie.  
He gave me some face cream that I was a bit dubious about but a google search gave good reviews and since the jar is unopened I'll give it a try.  He found me a dvd in the charity shop but unfortunately Moulin Rouge isn't a film I planned to see again, though looking at the tv listings over the next few days I might and long nights in Italy without UK telly, possibly I will get that desperate.
We had a sociable time over the holiday, invited round by neighbours on Christmas Eve morning and then again on Christmas Day, champagne and snacks and chat followed by a walk on the moor, parcel opening and cooking, the day flew by.
So now we are taking it easy, fellow inmates have gone for a walk round Bolton Abbey but Mr FF is a bit snuffly in a man flu way and staying home.  Pity it looks gorgeous from the lounge windows.
And its pretty inside too these little characters appeared on the landing outside one of the lower apartments, they make me smile every time I see them.  

Monday 15 December 2014

Mind the gap

Mr FF took the 6 am train on Saturday back to East Lothian for a walk followed by a meal with his now ex Scottish walking group.  I thought it was all a bit ambitious myself, I think his return train left around 6.30 pm and he expected to be home around 11.  I have much experience of Mr FF and travel gone wrong so I wasn't that surprised to receive an email early evening saying he had missed the train, was staying overnight in Scotland and would speak to me later.  This is what happened.
He was at the station waiting for his return train, positioned on the correct part of the platform for his carriage when the train arrived, marked as destination Birmingham.  He wasn't 100% sure that this was the train he wanted and further confused when it travelled past him and stopped a good distance down the platform.  So he legged it to the waiting train by which time a couple of guards had appeared and they confirmed the train stopped at Leeds. Unfortunately the train doors had closed before he got down the platform, he explained it was his train and could they open the doors please.  No chance, once closed the doors don't open again so he couldn't get on board and the last train for his connections pulled away.
Mr FF asked why the platform was marked with waiting areas but the train travelled beyond them, it was a shorter train of course.  Apparently there were notices in the station explaining this could happen but because it was dark they were not visible.
But the best bit was when he asked why there had been no public announcement about the train's destination and stopping points when it arrived. It seems the station has had to reduce the number of announcements it makes as they are a health and safety issue.  This is somewhat beyond me but it does give me hope that the number of Christmas tunes playing in the shops might also come under the same legislation soon.
Poor Mr FF, totally unprepared for an overnight, stayed with friends and arrived home late yesterday afternoon, using a circuitous route with many changes whilst clutching a note from the station guard in Scotland explaining the situation and giving him permission to travel at no extra cost.
I have suggested he gives travel on public transport a rest for a while and consider more local walks, he's taking the bus for his walk next week but it's not that far away and if the worst happens he can walk home.

Monday 8 December 2014

Our halls are decked

Yesterday morning there was much manly activity in the hall of our building as the Christmas tree went up.  Mr FF was there to give engineering input and very lovely it all is too. 
The final touches were added today, I am feeling quite festive which may be down to the lack of responsibility.  The decorations are excellent, completely in scale with such a grand building and can be enjoyed by all the inmates.   The tree can be seen from the entrance 

or looked down on from the internal windows and landings, 

and the basement decorations can be admired from above 
 or as you pass by on the way to the car park

There are two of these pretty wreaths in the entrance hall opposite our mail boxes
Its all quite magnificent, excellent work management committee and Santa's little helpers.

Monday 1 December 2014

You haven't seen me

Spotted on one of our afternoon walks around the environs.  A heron in the Wharf, beautiful and so well blended.