Saturday, 28 April 2012

Across Antarctica with Ran Fiennes and Mike Stroud

Yup, I am still travelling - in the metaphorical sense. I am reading both the Fiennes and Stroud accounts of their unsupported crossing of the Antarctic Continent.  I am not too sure that I would be Ran Fiennes first choice to pull a sledge weighing hundreds of pounds across the bottom of the world.  I went out for one hour with a young pioneer sister Thursday afternoon - a very easy hour, and she did the driving, there was minimal walking, and I was chauffered from door to door - but its pretty much finished me off. I can hardly move today.  No frostbite though.

At present we - Ran, Mike, and me along for the ride - are in the Mill Glacier - and very frostbitten. They're getting a bit ratty about having to tow me and my sofa along as well as their sledges. Did they think I was going to walk it!  And I think we must all be as mad as hatters, many icicles short of a load.  Here is another place no-one is supposed to be.  I don't think even germs can survive here. As Betty McDonald once said, of her home in the northerly USA: "Any germ that could survive the rigours of this climate would be so big and strapping you could see it coming for blocks."

Ran Fiennes says this:  "I found this canvas full of power and wonder and thanked God for this moment of being alive.  Nothing else lived here nor ever had since the dinosaurs of Gondwanaland. No birds nor beasts nor the least bacteria survived. Only the deep roar of massive avalanche, the shriek and grind of splitting rock, the groan of shifting ice, and the music, soft or fierce, of the winds from a thousand valleys, moved to and fro across the eternal silence."
("Mind Over Matter", Ranulph Fiennes, Mandarin non-fiction)

The beauty and the power of the creation moved  him to thank God for it.  And for the gift of life.

Even now, imperfect, dying, cut off from our Source of life as we are, and with the whole world system lying in the power of "the wicked one", we can see the wonderful qualities of Jehovah in the splendour of his creation.  And that can move us to search for Him.

And, if we do, we are assured that he will let himself be found by us.

And we can find such joy in being alive, even as things are now.  How much more wonderful it will be when the earth is being restored to Paradise, we can probably only begin to imagine.

Captain Butterfly has set off looking smart in his yellow safety jacket for a morning's  bucket rattling outside Sainsbury's - collecting to finance the Sussex Rescuers.    Jacks is back!  Hurrray!!  She gave us a lovely supper last night - lasagne, chocolate chiffon cake, and Oyster Bay wine.

I can't go on the door to door work this morning as I can barely stand up.  Not because of Jack's supper, I must quickly, add - but because of my arthritic legs.    I will pray for some internet witnessing to do.

By the way, whether Ran Fiennes and Mike Stroud should have made that crossing or not, given how precious life is, what an achievement... I don't understand how they were alive at the end of it.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Climbing Everest

I've been climbing Everest again - and this time by the Northerly route, which believe you me is more difficult than the Southerly route. It requires more technical climbing for a start.

Well, no, i haven't actually been there.  Not as such.  Not with my knees.  I am still waiting for the Stannah Stairlift Expedition, but I don't think they've installed one yet.  It would seem to be only a matter of time though.

And i have to think that is the only way anyone should go up there.  Life is too precious.   And look what all this climbing is doing to a beautiful mountain.

I have been reading Matt Dickinson's "The Death Zone".  And in it he says, of arriving at Camp 5:  "I began to notice the squalor our tents are pitched amongst.  The platform was littered with the shredded remains of abandoned tents, with strips of fabric blowing in the wind.  Pieces of rope, half buried sachets of food and remnants of clothing were embedded in almost every inch of ice.  Sharp metal snow stakes were sticking out at crazy angles, attached to lines which went nowhere.  Large areas of ice were stained yellow from urine, and frozen faeces were abundantly scattered around."

And bodies of dead climbers lie in the high mountain too, unburied.

Who could bury them, or bring them down again?   Once you are in the death zone, there is no guarantee you can get yourself back down alive, let alone anyone else.  This is not a place where we should be.

Matt Dickinson can climb and he can write.  He was there in the year of the calamitous storm, the year that John Krakauer wrote about in "Into Thin Air".   But of course Matt and his companions were climbing the other side of the mountain.  And yesterday I climbed it with them.

I knew that 3 Indian climbers and an Austrian had died on the North face in that storm, and this book tells something of their story.  There was a Japanese team on the mountain who apparently climbed right past the dying Indians and didn't stop or make any attempt to help them. However, it does seem from Matt's account that there was nothing they could have done to save them. They were all too high up.

Wasn't it Rob Hall's wife who said that expecting to be rescued from the summit of Everest was like expecting to be rescued from the surface of the Moon?

And of course her husband, and the New Zealand guide, Andy Harris, did try.  They were on the other side of the mountain when this happened, and, caught by the storm, they stayed with their client, Doug Hansen, and tried to get him back down to safety. But they couldn't save him, and they all died. And their bodies too lie unburied on the high mountain.

Should any of them have been there?  However I know Jehovah will not forget the love they showed for each other, and I hope he will wake them up when the time comes - all those dead climbers.  Then our lives will be so full of meaning and so full of joy that there will no need for dangerous adventuring.

And Everest will be clean and perfect again.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

The new Kingdom Hall

We had a meeting at the Bognor Regis Kingdom Hall this morning.  The brothers from the Building Committee gave us several talks about the work that is to start next week.  The angle was very much on how Jehovah will help us, and on Health and Safety.  It lasted nearly two hours, I was surprised to notice - as the time just flew by.

The first speaker started off by reminding us about the building of the Tabernacle and reading Exodus 36:1,2:   “And Bez′al‧el must work, also O‧ho′li‧ab and every wise-hearted man to whom Jehovah has given wisdom and understanding in these things in order to know how to do all the work of the holy service according to all that Jehovah has commanded.”  And Moses proceeded to call Bez′al‧el and O‧ho′li‧ab and every wise-hearted man into whose heart Jehovah had put wisdom, everyone whose heart impelled him to approach the work in order to do it."

We then read Exodus 35:25,26:  "And all the women who were wise of heart spun with their hands, and they kept bringing as yarn the blue thread and the wool dyed reddish purple, the coccus scarlet material and the fine linen.  And all the women whose hearts impelled them with wisdom spun the goat’s hair."

I doubt we will be needing any goats hair spun, but I love the idea that if we are wise at heart and want to serve Jehovah he will give us the wisdom and practical skills to do so.  Especially needed in my case.  Although I am not sure what I will be able to do, beyond make cakes, which the brothers will apparently be wanting in large numbers to have with their cups of tea.  I have two reliable recipes from the days when I used to bake for the Red Sea dive trips - carrot cake and marmalade muffins.  I may have to get the recipes out and dust them down.  IF the new medicine kicks in, I will certainly offer to wash up and peel veggies in the kitchens. But at the moment I can't stand up for more than about 10 minutes.

However, if I get to the restored earthly Paradise, there will be all sorts of things to do there, wonderful things, building, gardening, teaching all the resurrected dead - and learning more and more about Jehovah and his purposes. And it is good to be reminded that if we trust in Jehovah, he will equip us to do his will.

The second speaker started off by asking us what is Jehovah's view of life?  And of course, the Creator of life views life as sacred and highly values it.  Therefore so must we.  And we were discussing the provisions of the Mosaic Law - Jehovah's law.  For example, when a house was built, God’s Law required that its roof—a place of considerable family activity—have a parapet. “You must also make a parapet for your roof, that you may not place bloodguilt upon your house because someone . . . might fall from it.” (Deuteronomy 22:8) If someone fell because this safety law had not been observed, God held the owner responsible. No doubt, application of the loving principle embodied in this law would minimize accidents at the workplace or even in recreation.

And, yes, it would. I was reminded of a tragic incident many years ago when my parents were still alive.  There is a block of flats beside their bungalow - 4 storey I think - with a flat roof.   In the Fifties and Sixties builders and architects seemed to forget that it rains a lot in England.   Anyway this roof needed some attention and there was scaffolding up and some workmen on the top, and lots of clattering and banging.  Then suddenly the site went quiet and all the workmen went home.

It turned out that one of them had fallen from the roof, onto concrete and died.  And I feel sure that if a barrier, a parapet, had been erected while the building work was going on that would not have happened.

Its not that Christians are under the Mosaic Law. They aren't.   But we can and must learn from the principles that it teaches us.

So we heard about all the safety precautions that will be taken, and what part we can each play in keeping everybody involved with the build safe.

Col kindly drove me there and one of my siblings drove me back and dropped me off at my front door.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Her Indoors

I am still Her Indoors, though the legs do feel somewhat better. Foot still very swollen though.  Studied, did some housework, made the Captain's sandwiches - he fluttered off the minute the sun came out - and read. Got to the meeting last night - very glad to be in touch with my siblings again, but feel so bad I haven't been out on the door to door work.  Audrey has phoned every day and kept me in touch. There is a big meeting at the hall on Saturday morning for all us volunteers, as the building work is about to start.  Though what use I can be I don't know.  Can't exactly see myself climbing up ladders carrying bricks.  Maybe the brothers will need sandwiches and cakes making, that sort of thing. Hopefully I can do that.

Here is a poem - well definitely not a poem, but a verse - I wrote it so many years ago it makes me dizzy to think about.  We were visiting my brother - before he left for Oz - before he got married - before he had children.  He was a student at the time, I think, and was living in a friend's house in Bath.

It was so long ago.  One of the strange new things about getting old is that you have a longer and longer perspective - layers upon layer of memory.  Its good. But strange.

by me 

The spider guard to Judy’s plum tree
Nearly caught me
However tables neatly turned
 For Colin caught it in his hand
 It was lifted, turned, and photographed
 Exultantly our Colin laughed
 “This photograph, it will be good.”
 And sure enough, it got a first
 At the Dhahran Expat’s Camera Club.

We must have that spider photo somewhere, in one of the many many boxes we bought back with us from our expat years.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

A Butterfly Sea - and Jekyll

We woke up to storms. Wind, much needed rain, and a fierce Channel.  "Isn't the sea wonderful?" I gushed to Captain B.  "No." he said, with a face like thunder (to keep the storm motif going) "Its not a butterfly sea."

True enough - cold, windy, rainy.   However, after a few hours, the sun appeared, and Captain Butterfly disappeared.  He was off to Rewell Woods, to look for PBFs - Pearl Bordered Fritillarys to all you non-butterfly buffs out there.

I sent Joy (in Expatland) a poem I just found.  We spent many years of our expat life round at her parents house - and went on holidays with them, and camping trips.   They had a mynah bird called Jekyll, who was quite fierce and noisy. When he died I wrote a poem for him.

by me

So farewell then darling Jekyll
Now no voice our guests will heckle
No seed our floors will speckle
And no beak our hands will peckle
You’re a bird we’ll not forgetle
An eagle, not a starling!
Farewell then, Jekyll darling.

 I haven't done much as I am still not very mobile.  My medicine came.  I studied, and I used up some veggies to make us a soup for our tea, and an apple crumble to go along with it.  "Will there be custard?" asked Captain B when he rang me from the woods to tell me about the PBF situation.  

There was.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Hobbling through the Bluebell Woods - and re-reading

I did manage half an hour's slow and painful walk in the Arundel woods.  There was a cold wind, and we didn't see a single butterfly, but the bluebells are coming out.  Soon they will be a carpet.  Sadly I did not make it to the field service group on Saturday or to the meeting today.  I can't drive at the moment, and El Capitano is away stewarding the Brighton Marathon, or he would have driven me.

So I am in intensive training for the Couch Potato Marathon - and at this rate will be pretty hard to beat.

Just re-read "Quartet in Autumn" by Barbara Pym.  The quartet are four office workers, two who retire during the course of the book, and two who will retire.  Its the first time I've read it as a retiree myself.  She captures well, and with a very light touch, how, as retirement approaches, you find yourself becoming a part of the past.  The world is going on without you.

Quartet is funny and sad in just the right way.  Spoiler alert...!  Although given that this not a thriller...  Marcia's oddity and unpleasantness are wonderfully captured, as is the way her mind is starting to go haywire - you see how strange her actions are, but how they make perfect sense to her.

And the saga of the alien milk bottle is brilliant.

Barbara Pym gives Marcia a happy and peaceful death, even though it takes place in hospital. But...  well, let it speak for itself:  "The young doctor bent over Marcia. He didn't like the look of her at all - indeed she was the kind of patient one didn't like the look of at the best of times."

And the book ends on a note of hope for our heroine Letty who sees how much life might still be holding out to her.

And, speaking as one who is loving retirement, I think that is the perfect way to end it.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Poems and Poets

I have been re-reading a couple of books about Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath - and I wonder why there had to be such sturm and drang about the writing of poetry back then.

Maybe there still is now?  But hopefully not.

And what a bad press Sylvia Plath gave to those who loved her.  If I hadn't read about her life but had only read her poetry I would have assumed that her father was a Nazi.  Whereas he was far from it.  He did die when Sylvia was young, but i doubt that he did it on purpose.

Once again, I have to note the Bible's superior wisdom.  "The truly wise woman has built up her house, but the foolish one tears it down with her own hands." - Proverbs 14:1

And also, as I don't want to take sides, suppose Ted Hughes had known and taken to heart these words:  "Drink water out of your own cistern, and tricklings out of the midst of your own well.  Should your springs be scattered out of doors, [your] streams of water in the public squares themselves?  Let them prove to be for you alone, and not for strangers with you.  Let your water source prove to be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth,  a lovable hind and a charming mountain goat. Let her own breasts intoxicate you at all times. With her love may you be in an ecstasy constantly.  So why should you, my son, be in an ecstasy with a strange woman or embrace the bosom of a foreign woman? " - Proverbs 5:15-20

A charming mountain goat... of course, as us ladies get older it tends to become more of a (hopefully) charming mountain goat with rather bad knees who tends to avoid mountains and stairs. But the principle remains the same.  Faithful and loyal love between a married couple is a source of true happiness. Especially in retirement.

Its difficult because it wasn't meant to be like this We were never meant to wither and die. We were made to live forever. And we would, if our first parents had not unplugged themselves from their Creator, their source of life, before they had us, their children.  So its not easy to cope with. And marriage now is the union of two imperfect people in an imperfect world.   But we all long for the perfection we should have had - and will have, if we trust in Jehovah with all our heart.

Ted and Sylvia were the fatally flawed children of Adam, living in a world system ruled by Satan. And so am I.  So I am in no position to judge them (or anyone) - I just wish they had known the truth.

However, I can say that it didn't require one ounce of sturm and drang to get this poem written (but you could probably have guessed that even if i hadn't told you):

 by me 

The cardboard – Cardboard?? – that helps to prop
My aged father’s tumbledown Heath Robinson greenhouse up
Has come into its own today
The backyard squirrel has been carting it away
To become part of a ramshackle array
Of nesting bits that fill the fork
Of our tallest tree.   We must be careful how we walk
So as not to frighten her away.
If she can rear a brood in that leafy muddle
We’ll have a Spring of baby squirrels.

If the backyard squirrel is still around she must be a great grandmother many times squared by now.  

Thursday, 12 April 2012

A Shameless Bit of Self-Promotion

Or I could have called this Blog: Please Buy My Book.

Here is a link to the Kindle version of "Old Playgrounds":

There is a lovely Captain B photo of the Derbyshire Dales on the front cover. They too were our childhood playgrounds, although none of us has written about them:

Users of ipod/iphone/ipad, Mac, Windows PC and Android devices can download a free Kindle app available here:

We plan for a Paper Version to be out soon for us old-style horse-drawn readers.

For some strange reason, Hollywood hasn't contacted my agent yet for the movie rights...

I hobbled off to the meeting last night - with every elderly snail in town hurtling past me - but had to be chauffered there and back by Captain Gallant.  I did make it to the field service group on Tuesday and managed over an hour doing return visits and route calls.

Bea is kindly reading through my as yet unpolished - though finished - and unpublished dive thriller.  It did briefly find an agent. 

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Is it later than you think?

This was the special talk delivered world wide in the congregations on Sunday.  I took some notes and will re-create as much of the speech as I can from them.  My knees were hurting a lot and my hands were not working brilliantly, so please don't expect a brilliant re-creation of it - just the general idea.

The speaker started by quoting 2 Peter 3:4:   "Where is this promised presence of his? Why, from the day our forefathers feel asleep in death, all things are continuing exactly as from creation's beginning."

Are there times when we feel like that?

He commended our continuing faithfulness, shown in the Memorial attendance on the 5th which showed how much we appreciate the love that Jehovah and Jesus show for us.   "But God recommends his own love to us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." - Romans 5:8

The speaker then talked about the sign that Jesus gave to his followers when he asked them when Jerusalem and the Temple would be destroyed, and also how they could discern the time of his presence.

We read Mark 13:1-4:  "As he was going out of the temple one of his disciples said to him: “Teacher, see! what sort of stones and what sort of buildings!” However, Jesus said to him: “Do you behold these great buildings? By no means will a stone be left here upon a stone and not be thrown down.”  And as he was sitting on the Mount of Olives with the temple in view, Peter and James and John and Andrew began to ask him privately:  “Tell us, When will these things be, and what will be the sign when all these things are destined to come to a conclusion?”"

(A little digression from me here. Apparently, the Jewish historian Josephus recorded that when the Romans came up against Jerusalem they had no intention of destroying the Temple - too much trouble - massive building - great big stones.  They just wanted the Temple gold.   However they did destroy the Temple. And that they would was also prophesied in the Hebrew Scriptures, in the 70 weeks prophecy in Daniel, which warns that after the Messiah is cut off in death "with nothing for himself", "the city and the holy place the people of a leader that is coming will bring to their ruin. And the end of it will be by the flood. And until the end there will be war; what is decided upon is desolations." Daniel 9:24-27)

We then looked at verse 8 of Mark 13: “For nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom, there will be earthquakes in one place after another, there will be food shortages. These are a beginning of pangs of distress."    And the Speaker asked us if we are seeing this fulfilled in our days.

He discussed the number of dead from the wars of the last century. Unfortunately I didn't get all the figures down.  But I have jotted down that it works out at over 100 people killed per hour round the clock for the last ninety years.  How much worse can it get?

He then discussed earthquakes.  I didn't get the figures down - arthritis very bad today.*

Food shortages - my notes say that 1 in 7 people do not get enough to eat.

The Speaker then read Luke 21:11: "And there will be great earthquakes, and in one place after another pestilences and food shortages; and there will be fearful sights and from heaven great signs."   He then talked about "pestilences", but once again I don't have the figures down.  They were chilling though.

He then spoke about the "increasing of lawlessness" that the Christian Greek Scriptures warn about at the time of the end.  He defined it as an increasing disregard for God's laws and principles.  I have certainly seen that in my lifetime. And Biblical standards on sexual morality are becoming more and more Politically Incorrect by the day.

We then read 2 Corinthians 5:20:  "We are therefore ambassadors substituting for Christ, as though God were making entreaty through us. As substitutes for Christ we beg: “Become reconciled to God"".   And the Speaker pointed out that we don't know for how much longer this offer of becoming reconciled with God will be held out.

What must we do?  2 Peter 3:11,12 says:  "Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of persons ought you to be in holy acts of conduct and deeds of godly devotion,  awaiting and keeping close in mind the presence of the day of Jehovah, through which [the] heavens being on fire will be dissolved and [the] elements being intensely hot will melt."

We must keep this day in mind - every day.  And we must all ask ourselves this:  Do I really believe that the time left is reduced?  What does my way of life show?

The Speaker then read Revelation 22:17: "And the spirit and the bride keep on saying: “Come!” And let anyone hearing say: “Come!” And let anyone thirsting come; let anyone that wishes take life’s water free."

We then heard an experience of a Jamaican brother who, until he accepted the invitation to "take life's water free",  led a violent and immoral life, financing his lifestyle by robbery.   His mother began to study with the local JW congregation, and he was impressed by the changes he saw in her.  And he began to study the Bible himself.

The Speaker then made a plea to all those who have become inactive, reminding them how precious they are to Jehovah, what a high price he has paid for them - how much he wants them back.

"For you were like sheep, going astray; but now you have returned to the shepherd and overseer of your souls." - 1 Peter 2:25

"I have wandered like a lost sheep. O look for your servant, For I have not forgotten your own commandments." - Psalm 119:176

There can be various reasons for no longer attending meetings or doing the preaching work.  One is that we may have been stumbled by the failings of others.  We may have been badly hurt and it isn't easy to forgive and forget.

The Speaker then read Jeremiah 33:8:  "And I will purify them from all their error with which they have sinned against me, and I will forgive all their errors with which they have sinned against me and with which they have transgressed against me."

He once again reminded us how precious we are to Jehovah, and asked us what we would do if we had a precious vase in our house that had become stained. Would we just throw it away - or would we carefully and patiently restore it?

We can work hard to get rid of any bitterness towards any of our brothers.  And the Speaker then discussed the experience of a brother who came back after being inactive for 25 years.    He said what a warm welcome he got from the congregation.

The speaker then reminded us about the constant attacks from Satan, who, the Bible tells us, is the ruler of this present world system of things.  We read Jesus' words at Matthew 11:28:  "Come to me, all you who are toiling and loaded down, and I will refresh you."  We can find true relief from all these pressures within the Christian congregation.

Jehovah is using his annointed servants to remind us all that it is much later than we think.  So we must support the whole association of brothers, be zealous in the preaching work, and pay more than the usual attention to God's word.  

Our closing Scripture was Luke 21:34-36:    “But pay attention to yourselves that your hearts never become weighed down with overeating and heavy drinking and anxieties of life, and suddenly that day be instantly upon you as a snare. For it will come in upon all those dwelling upon the face of all the earth.  Keep awake, then, all the time making supplication that you may succeed in escaping all these things that are destined to occur, and in standing before the Son of man.”

An ever more urgent warning is being sounded worldwide.  It is later than we think.

*While typing this talk I am hearing news of a double earthquake off Banda Aceh.  I can only hope and pray the people there are not going to suffer the horror of another tsunami.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Bank Holidays, and lurkers from Waitrose

We have had some rain (much needed) in the night - and more promised for tomorrow.  Bank holidays are so reliable weatherwise.

Yesterday we were out on the work, on our last few houses, when a car stopped and Jackie leaped out and out gave me a hug and a kiss.  It had been a lovely morning on the doors and that ended it on a very happy note.  The only downside was/were my knees.  We did over an hour and a half and i began to think that they wouldn't carry me back to the car.

I couldn't get up the stairs of the flats, so the two sisters I was with had to do the upstairs doors, while I did the ground floors.  I am grateful we have so many young ones in the congregation, otherwise how could we cover our territory.  As the Bible tells us, this is an urgent work.  "Preach the word, be at it urgently in favorable season, in troublesome season, reprove, reprimand, exhort, with all long-suffering and [art of] teaching." - 2 Timothy 4:2

Will this new med kick in, so my knees start working properly again?  And will I stop showing everyone the bruise from my first attempt at injecting myself?  Its a horror.  So everyone will be very grateful when I do.

In case anyone from Waitrose is lurking, I recommended your lime and coconut ice-cream to Jean, and she asked me to drop her off there so she could get some. And for supper last night I gave us it for dessert, and now Jacks is a fan.  So if the Lime and Coconut ice-cream freezer keeps on emptying, you will know why.

Mind you, Jill's home made orange ice cream and my mother's raspberry ice cream, from freshly picked garden raspberries, are still tops.  My mother's ideal ice-cream remained the one from her childhood days in Cornwall, when they used to buy ice cream from the cottages. It was made from that yellow Cornish clotted cream with some sugar stirred in, and frozen.  And the cream came from real organic milk - and, as we say now - it was "locally sourced" - probably from the field at the back of the cottage.

Friday, 6 April 2012

The Memorial

It was the Memorial of Jesus' death last night. It was held all over the world, after sunset.   We all arrived in good time, the Hall - our borrowed Hall - was full to bursting. The Captain and I had seats right in the front.  The flowers looked lovely, the bread and wine were on the table in front of us and were duly passed round. There is no-one in our congregation who takes it - we are all hoping to live "to time indefinite" on the earth.  The Speaker gave a short, clear Bible-based speech explaining why we need the ransom sacrifice, what it will accomplish, and who partakes of the bread and wine and why.

And I had Captain Butterfly beside me to hold my hand during the final prayer.

I am wondering if there will always be a celebration on the Passover.  To his faithful apostles Jesus said: “Keep doing this in remembrance of me.” (Luke 22:19) When writing to members of the spirit-begotten Christian congregation, the apostle Paul added: “As often as you eat this loaf and drink this cup, you keep proclaiming the death of the Lord, until he arrives.” (1 Cor. 11:26)

Until he arrives.  So presumably once the Kingdom of God is ruling over the earth - after Armageddon - we won't memorialise Jesus' death - or not in the same way...  but will there be something on that day?

Well, lets hope we are all there to find out.

While the evening was lovely, yesterday itself was rather tense, due to butterfly matters.  So many new members have hatched out in March that I am struggling for supplies to put in the membership packages.  Its getting rather complicated. And I can't post anything till after the Bank Holiday.

However, my injection went a lot better this time - no pain! And no bruising to speak of. So I don't need to be supervised from now on.

With it being a bank holiday, I thought it would pretty much guarantee us some rain.  And indeed they have had deep snow oop North.  But this morning the sun is still shining here.  The Channel is calm.  And the Green is still green.  But for how much longer?

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

When I was a student landlady

When I was a student landlady many years ago, I wrote this:

Look cats!
Here comes David
Our fourth year medic
Hurrying home
Run to meet him
Rush to greet him
He might have
bought you a liver
from that nice
dissecting room.

Urrrgh...  I couldn't write that now.

Done nothing to speak of today.  Waiting in until the afternoon for a call from the nurse who is coming tomorrow to supervise my fearsome injection.  Most of me seems to be covered in a bruise from my efforts last week, so I hope I can find somewhere to put the needle.

Did various bits of housework and studying, and chatted to Bea back and forth on the email.

Its been sunny here with a cloudless blue sky and a calm Channel, but its getting much colder.  The snow is coming down from the north, but will probably reach us as scattered showers sometime tomorrow.

Its the Memorial of Jesus' death tomorrow.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

The Zimmer Twins Ride Again

We managed an hour on the doors today - but only half an hour going door to door.  My twin (Audrey) had had enough by then, so we did some return visits.  I managed to place all my invitations to The Memorial on the 5th, which is a relief, as given the way my knees are seizing up I don't know if I will get out again this week.

Apart from the Memorial of course!  I must not miss that.  But my better half, Captain Butterfly, will be there to help me.

Col has been out all day taking photos of orange tips, which will soon be appearing on his blog.  Apparently there was a tiny sprinkling of rain over Arundel during the afternoon.  Either we didn't get it here, or it was too tiny for me to notice.   Its snowing in Scotland though.

Do I feel a snow poem coming on?

 by me

Black trees rattle in the icy wind
Through gale-smashed panes the greenhouse sings
Tights, shirts, tea-towels, bras and knicks
Dance to welcome eighty-six!

As you see this was written a long long time ago, in the days when my parents lived at the bungalow, and my mother hung her washing out in all weathers.

Now they are sleeping in death, knowing nothing of the years going by over their heads.  But I hope that they are safe in "the everlasting arms" and have a wonderful awakening ahead of them into the restored earthly Paradise.

Monday, 2 April 2012

In Arundel Woods

Captain and Mrs Butterfly were photographing orange tips in the woods near Arundel this afternoon.  Lovely fresh perfect orange tips.
male Orange-tip
I was wondering if, say, fifty years ago, the woods would have been ablaze with them?

The white something - I thought it was stitchwort, but in fact it is... wood anenome was blooming everywhere and the bluebells are just starting.  Horrendous traffic due to the roadworks.   It is a lovely day - perfect blue skies - not a rain cloud in sight (though we desperately need some rain) - but coldish.  Perfect walking weather really, if only I could walk.
Bea emailed to say she had got safely back home, and Audrey rang re our field service tomorrow.

I am trying to remember what happened at the weekend.  Captain B was in London on Saturday - wearing his dive hat.   I didn't get to the morning field service - too zapped by the new meds - but did get out for an hour in the afternoon.

Sunday was the meeting, with a lovely talk that I wish everyone in the world could have heard.   And at some stage I polished and dusted everything - and did four loads of washing.  The Captain did the ironing which was very noble.