Showing posts from August, 2014

Billy Smart's Circus - but where are the dogs and horses?

Have just recovered from week with grand daughter followed by a couple of days in Birmingham catching up with friends.
    We took her to Billy Smart's Circus, at Glyne Gap field. We all enjoyed it. The big top was classic, the band was rumpty-tumpty, the ring mistress was dashing, and the acts were of a high standard.
     To our surprise, GD seemed particularly taken with the clowns. That sort of slapstick humour has always left me cold, and when I was little, I spent my time quaking with dread in case a clown spotted me and singled me out for some unimaginable public humiliation.
      It wasn't a circus, but I'll never forget being pushed up on stage by my grandparents at a pantomime in Torquay, having to sing 'The Happy Wanderer'. Even worse... no, don't even get me started on being on stage with Ken Dodd at that Housing Conference.... I cringe to think of it.

     However, what was missing for me about the circus was the animals. Now, don't get me wro…

Best coffee and cafes in St Leonard's

After my post on Best Coffee Places in Hastings, I had many St Leonardsistas complaining that I had left their cafes out, despite me saying that I was only concentrating on Hastings Town Centre and the Old Town.  Well, now it is time to put that right, so off to St Leonard's we go. 
    Once again, I apologise for any omissions - I can't be calling in everywhere, I'd have extreme caffeine overload and be twenty stone.
    Also, I was asked about access for people with disabilities. I don't actually think any of the places I've mentioned here have an accessible toilet, and some are downright awkward even for the able-bodied.
    Just to recap, to get my highest rating (and I'm introducing a star rating now), cafes must have:
-  a comfortable, pleasant and welcoming interior,
-  inside and and outside seating,
-  good quality coffee and tea,
-  nice cakes,
-  good clean loos,
-  pleasant, efficient, fast service,
-  interesting reading matter 
-  fresh, tasty, r…

From Lyme Regis to Llantwit Major, then a big wedding!

Home again after an action-packed week, starting in Lyme Regis and ending in South Wales, for a wedding.
     Our first stop was to visit old friend Karol, who we met many years ago in Turkey. Drove down to Lyme Regis on the A303 past some of my favourite place names. Teffont Magna, Compton Pauncefoot, Chilton Candelo, Sandon Orcas.  I have a whole fantasy scenario about life in the Dower House, Compton Pauncefoot.
     'For goodness sake write it down', says Philosopher, 'and make us some money.'
     Karol lives in a beautiful house overlooking Lyme Bay, but we were surprised to see how the trees between her and the sea had grown up since our last visit, to partially obscure the view of one lovely cliff, Golden Gap. We walked down into Lyme, and then heaved ourselves back up again - my, that place is hilly, makes Hastings look flat.
     The sun was out, the sea was blue, throngs of holiday-makers were enjoying themselves in the pretty little town and on the beach.  …

Follow the Herring, yarn bombs or Jager bombs?

Just going back to my last post, my friend Jacky added a comment quoting the Oxford English Dictionary definition of Art: 'works produced by human creative skills and imagination'.
     I asked Philosopher for his definition. 'What sort of a question is that,' he sniffed. After nearly 30 years I should know better than to expect a simple answer. Anyway, when I badgered him further he did say something about art not having utility, - but then started ruminating about religious icon paintings. Finally, he pronounced that the definition was wholly in the mind/eye of the beholder. So there you go.
The 'Follow the Herring' project down on the Stade has been interesting - the exhibition and the associated play has travelled down the East Coast from Musselburgh, finishing in Hastings. The route follows the annual progress of the Herring Lassies, women who would follow the shoals of herring down the coast, gutting and packing the fish in each port. Each venue on the rou…

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