Monday, 29 August 2011

Making Monday

Today it is more about making time.

Making time for a new project Stripes to Keep Me Warm , the yarn shown in the picture below

Making time for a new book The Invisible Ones . I do believe I actually squealed out loud when I saw this book in the shop today. I loved The Tenderness of Wolves

I have also made Sweet Potato and Chorizo Soup, but I don't have a picture of that.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Making Monday

joining in with Natalie's Making Mondays theme.
OK, technically, this was Making Sunday...but well, let's not be too pedantic.

This is the Banana and pecan cake from Cider Beans, Wild Greens, and Dandelion Jelly: Recipes from Southern Appalachia . The recipe is actually for a layer cake with cream cheese frosting. I added some sultanas, chucked it into a larger and a small loaf tin, gave the smaller away to one of my neighbours. It is totally delicious and about to be wrapped in slices and frozen for those times when emergency tea-and-cake is required. Like ...around 4 o'clock of any given day.

The view from my window

I thought this was Bluebell, Daisy and Buttercup. Closer inspection revealed them to be Tom, Dick and Harry

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Of things domestic

Nothing much happening around here at the moment. For which I am thankful :0)
We are pottering about and enjoying the weather. Yesterday we went to Zürich for lunch and happend to see this:

If you click this link you'll get a video. For some reason every year crazy people in Zürich jump in the Limmat River and float down it with a rubber duck :0)

Mundane news the first:

More yoghurt being made- this time I sweetened the batch and added vanilla. That should be really good.

Mundane news the second. Armed with The Bean Book, , the famous little number from Rose Elliot, I aim to to eat my way through the stock of oldish beans in the cellar. If you don't know, dried beans which are beyond their 'best before date' are fine to use. They just need longer cooking. LIke three hours longer...

Mundane news the third:I continue to wrestle a corner of the garden into submission, and actually planted an anemone (try saying that after a few) to celebrate.

See: mundane. But in a good way :0)

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

There has been sone good 'stuff'

Like these:

Fancy one with a cuppa?

Blueberry Muffins

Friday, 12 August 2011

well....part II

I go to tell the manager that our ground floor room was broken into via the window. He seems totally unconcerned about us, the customers. I ask him to call the police. An officer comes and inspects the damage. The room was by no means small but the window was broken with such force that there was glass on the pillows, on the far side of the room. We discover that they had my husband's Nexus 1 and about £300.00 in cash. They had been through my handbag and had thankfully just tossed house keys and passports aside. The did not delve beneath the knitting in my rucksack- which was where my wallet with all of my 'plastic' and some other cash was.(Number Guy's was in his pocket.)

I go back to reception It is about 11.30pm by this point. I am not feeling at all well. They seemed totally bemused when I ask them to give us another room. Upon hearing that there was no other room I asked them to start phoning around hotels and finding us one. This seemed to be a totally unreasonable request. Suddenly there was another room available. About an hour later when we are finally finished with the police officer we take our suitcase, walk miles and miles (no offer of assistance from staff)...go up and down, up and down lots of steps- our room in in the old part of the hotel and the layout is bizarre to say the least. Not only is the room right above the disco, it has someone else's stuff in it. We trek back, up and down, up and down, back to reception. Only to be asked 'Are you sure?' by the receptionist. By this time I am feeling too unwell to say 'No, we are joking.' The manager appears and reassures us that there was a mistake, ours is the room next to that one and the disco will be off in 15 minutes.

We go back to the foyer. The manager joins us for a friendly chat. Finally thinks to ask if we might need something to drink. We ask for coffee and a soft drink and he then sits still for another half hour before finally going to organise it. In the meantime NUmber Guy had gone back to our room for something. He had a T-shirt with his employer's logo on it. As he came back I could hear someone being somewhat unpleasant about it. A scary-looking bloke then sits down with us and starts to pick NG's brains about search ratings :0( FFS- everyone now knows we have been burgled, it is after one in the morning and I look/feel like shit. But neither off us feels like telling this guy to take a hike. It was all very odd and we suspect quite strongly that he was the fucker who broke into our room...remember that NG had given our room number earlier in the evening when ordering a coffee. So this guy then starts going on about this online webshop of his friend blah blah blah. It is a sex toy shop (Oh, really? How uninteresting). We sit through as much of his stupid, inane burbling as we can manage until he offers to show me the site on my iPad. he makes a move to grab it but I get there first and just tell him 'No way!' He then starts getting very interested in whether it is the iPad 1 or 2....hmmm. But then he goes too far and makes a grab for Number Guy's laptop to show us the website on that. (what the fuck is wrong with this guy? I mean, how much more inappropriate could he get?). I've had enough by now.
'I don't mean to be rude,' says I. (For non-Brits that translates as 'I am being really rude, please fuck off and die.'). You can see we have had a bad night. I am ill and it is now after one in the morning. Goodnight.' He finally sods off. We drink our coffee/soft drink and go to bed.

We were supposed to fly back to Zürich later this same afternoon but I get worse and worse. After a really frustrating call to a doctor ('Did I need to be admitted?' Erm...wasn't that his job to decide?) I am finally admitted to hospital. Pyelonephritis is diagnosed and I am given IV antibiotics. I can't comment on other wards in the Countess of Chester Hospital but the two wards I was on were spotlessly clean and the staff had no problems with me self-medicating.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...the staff's attitude at the hotel, together with everything that had happened meant that NG did not feel happy staying there. He left and booked another hotel. We remain disgusted with both the standards in the hotel and with the very unhelpful attitude of the manager. We were burgled at his hotel yet he did not seem to think he needed to do anything to assist us.

Unfortunately...the new hotel is at the racetrack. It was Chester Race Day. The car park is shared by the hotel and the racetrack. NG can't get in until after 8.00pm....

My stay in hospital was largely uneventful, thankfully, but there was one funny incident. The morning that I was discharged I was in another ward and hadn't even said as much as 'Hello' to the other women, as I had been brought to that ward late the night before.The woman in the bed opposite me obviously didn't like the look of me- she was making mobile calls (that wasn't a problem on the wards at this hospital) with a disposable bed pan held up to her face. She was glaring at me over the top of the bedpan, holding the mobile in the bowl part of the pan and speaking into it in an obvious attempt to make sure I didn't hear what she was saying.It was SO funny. She kept glaring at me over the top, so I finally very ostentatiously put my ear buds in and turned my iTouch on...but kept laughing to myself....well, it was the only funny thing that had happened in a very long weekend.

So... discharged, get to the hotel. Grateful to see that there are two extra pillows in a clear case on top of the wardrobe. That meant I wouldn't have to ask for more.I take them out, arrange them on the bed, turn over...and put my face right into a pillow smelling of vomit. Well...that really was the imperfect end to an imperfect weekend

Thursday, 11 August 2011

There has been knitting

In amongst all the crap of late, I have been knitting.

This is the Sake sock from Cookie A's book Knit.Sock.Love

I also got some yarn from will find him on Ravelry.
Excuse the quality of this shaky photo. The yarn is gorgeous, go have a look at his stuff :0)


I am not sure where to start...this is a sorry tale, but I am going to share.

On the 29th of July we arrive in Chester at the end of a two week holiday/conference trip and check into the hotel. NUmber Guy had had reservations about this place but he was looking for somewhere that would be a treat for me while I stayed behind when he and his friends went walking ( This was my choice, as I really was not up to a ten mile hike). THis place had a spa...he said the hotel itself looked slightly shabby but the spa looked good. We didn't have much time to look, so we went with this one. When we were booking in a couple were complaining that their shower still was not working, despite having reported the problem in the morning.

We get our key and walk miles and miles of corridor to get to our room. Fair enough- we had asked for a quiet room. The key wouldn't work. We hiked back, miles and miles....'Are you sure?' asked the receptionist. 'No,'I said. 'we're joking'. Receptionist unimpressed, hikes back miles and miles with us and looks upon us in triumph as the new key opens the door.

The room is large, barren and cold. But very clean. Same with the bathroom. Number Guy had ordered some champagne and chocolates as a surprise. There they were- a big box of cheap chocolates, lukewarm bottle of champers sitting on the table. We go back to reception, are met with an astonished glance when we ask if a wine bucket with iced water could be provided for the champagne. We go into dinner. Complaints from diners are being fielded left, right and centre by the waiting staff. When our meal arrives it looks like someone had vomitted on Numer Guy's plate. No kidding. Mines was.... edible. We go back to the room. The champagne is in the water. We open the bottle and...clunk...the glasses together.

I was not feeling very confident about being left alone in the hotel so I decide to go out with everyone the next day. I go to bed and I slide under the covers plus extra blankets and several layers of clothes- it is cold and of course the heating doesn't work.

Breakfast next day- someone has taken the serving tongs for the eggs and burst all the yolks as the search for one which is just right. The woman in front of me sneezes all over the tomatoes. I go for some Weetabix.

We take all our valuables with us as the room has no safe. We have a lovely day with a fantastic lunch. My hip had been bothering me so D carried my rucksack (Number Guy had his) so that I could go for a walk around the lake at Delmere Forrest.

Half an hour before the end of the walk I started to feel vaguely unwell. It started in my leg muscles. I didn't say anything as my health is always a topic of conversation and even I am bored of it. By the time we finish I am feeling quite ill. It is happening so quickly I suspect flu. Number Guy has suggested finding a nice place for dinner, as we don't want to eat at the hotel. By the time we get back to Chester I am just not up to it. I suggest a supermarket visit for yoghurt and fruit. By the time we get to the supermarket (about an hour and a half after I started to feel ill) I have a fever. I go to buy a thermometer and some ibuprofen and Number Guy reluctantly levase me to get some yoghurt etc. By this time I have rigors (violent trembling/shaking associated with high temperatures). I am finding it hard to walk and I am shaking so much the store manage comes over and says I am vibrating with the shakes. I looked so ill he wanted to call an ambulance. My temperature is 38.5 (my normal temp is 36.5). I decline, Number Guy gets back and we get back to the hotel, leave most of our stuff in the room, take iPad and Laptop and go to foyer. Number Guy gets me a coffee, telling the bar staff (and incidentally other people in the bar/foyer area) our room number. I am on phone to NHS 24. After about an hour and 3 phone calls, a doctor says I need to be seen 'right now'. Because I was so unwell, we didn't go back to the room for our stuff.

I see the doctor, she says it is a urinary tract infection and told me to take the antibiotics but get back in touch if I get worse. We get back to the hotel to find our room had been burgled.

Next installment tomorrow...