Showing posts from April, 2014

Sovereign Harbour, Rye Harbour - Granny Battleaxe on patrol

Last week we had grand-daughter Eve staying with us. She is now at the awkward age where playgrounds and play centres are too babyish, and adult things too boring. Mind you, I won't miss having to sit in those hectic warehouses full of screaming children....
     We went to Sovereign Harbour near Eastbourne, a purpose-built marina, retail and residential area, a much bigger and more modern version of Brighton Marina. The cinema out there was showing the latest Muppet film and Eve quite wanted to see that. Philosopher and I had briefly visited the outer fringes of the development before, and came away vowing never to return, it looked so tacky and horrible.
     However, this time we explored further, looking for somewhere to have lunch, and to our surprise it was very pleasant.
     There is a big 'Waterfront' area with many cafes and bars with wide terraces where you can watch the boats, and the harbour itself is very large, and interesting to walk round. The different b…

Good Friday Procession in Hastings Old Town - and general Easter thoughts.

Well, that's it for the Mini-eggs for another year.  On Friday we watched the Old Town procession, which enacts the Stations of the Cross. It does not fail to impress, even for a pair of atheists like us.
     It starts at St Clement's Church, and winds it way through the streets, stopping at St Mary Star of the Sea, and finishing with the crucifixion at All Saints. Jesus is accompanied by soldiers who kick, beat and flog him in a disturbingly authentic manner, and a crowd, including his mother, dressed in biblical robes, who shout and remonstrate with the soldiers. There are also various clergy persons and a mass of on-lookers, many of whom chant and sing as they go.

     We first heard about the event because one of my Hastings Writers' Group Committee colleagues, Janet, plays Mary, the mother of Christ.

     Last year it was terribly cold. Jesus kept his robe on throughout because he had on long johns and a T shirt underneath. Not totally authentic. This year, it was wa…

New computer, WI Speaker Selection, and spring flowers

Slight delay in posting, Battleaxe has been somewhat busy. 
     First thing, I have got a new computer. The old one was Windows XP and Office 2003, and had got so slow I could make, and drink, a cup of tea while it lurched painfully into life. I avoided Windows 8, having seen Philosopher's troubles, and got Windows 7.
     All sorts of annoying things have happened, not the least of which is that the faithful old 'Picture Manager' that I used to edit my photos has disappeared. I had to import a special programme, Picture Gallery, which is far more clunky.  Have also had to download the latest version of Word. Grr, it looks so complicated. Why oh why? Why update something only to make it worse, not better.
     Anyway, so far, touch wood, it works.
     Have been busy with other things too. Yesterday I went to a WI Speakers Selection Day over in Northiam, with Marion, one of my WI colleagues. It was a bit like a polite version of Britain's Got Talent. Throughout the da…

Natural Sculptures on the Beach

Where we live, the sea tries as hard as it can to move the sand and pebbles down the coast to enlarge the vast pebble wasteland at Dungeness.
     Seaside towns try to stop this by building groynes, or breakwaters.
     Did you know that the strict definition of a groyne is a structure running down the beach and out to sea, while a breakwater runs along the beach, parallel to the shore?
     Over time, the constant beating of the sea against these structures grinds them down into fantastic shapes. Different coloured bits of rope and net tangle themselves around the wood, and small stones get stuck in strange places....
     The weathered wood has inspired and intrigued many artists and photographers. Here are some of our pictures, and a few paintings of local scenes by artists we like.

Two London Exhibitions - De Chirico and Artists Textiles

Had a lovely spring day out to London. One of the last days of catching the train to St Pancras - the Charing Cross line is now apparently fixed, after several months.
    It is a funny journey on that line - a bucolic - and slow - diesel chug across Romney Marsh, stopping at Winchelsea, Rye and Appledore. Oast houses on the hills in the distance, mist, sheep, herons and egrets standing at the edges of the ditches. Then all change at Ashford to the HS1 which hurtles up to London in 38 minutes. Talks are going on about extending the fast line to Hastings - not in our lifetime, methinks.
    Our first stop was the Estorick Collection, in Canonbury Square in Islington, to see a small De Chirico exhibition. We have been there once before - it is a lovely old house set in a pretty garden - unexpected for north London.   The permanent collection is Italian art, and mostly Futurist Italian Art to boot - very esoteric (heh heh).
    The De Chirico show was small, but interesting - to be hones…

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