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{ Author Archives }

I am a former research scientist, now temporarily of independent means, fighting oesophageal cancer and learning to support myself without a salary.

Zapping the decorator

I have a regular annual booking with Rob, my trusty decorator, to keep on top of the paintwork of this house. There’s always something peeling or fading or needing attention. This year, my priority was to get the summerhouse sorted out. This is a rather lovely little Victorian shed on the topmost terrace of the […]

Mrs Warren’s Profession

I decided this morning that I’d not been to Malvern Theatre for a while, and that it was about time I had a look at what was available today as a standby seat at the matinĂ©e performance.The play turned out to be Mrs Warren’s Profession. George Bernard Shaw is not one of my favourite playwrights […]

Sorting out another Will

My Gran died at Christmas, having surprised everyone (including herself) by living well into her nineties. She had very little to leave, and made a very simple Will, but there was one clause in it that has been causing me no end of trouble. She wanted to leave a sum of money to her great-great-nephew, […]

Back to reality

It was overall a thoroughly interesting and enjoyable holiday, but it was then back to earth with a bump. I got back from the airport to a phone call from my neighbour, saying that my burglar alarm had gone off while I was away. She’d had a good look around, and couldn’t see anything suspicious, […]

Lunchtime conversations

The group on holiday was the usual mix of interesting people, with just two whom I tried my best to avoid. The holiday was fully inclusive (including apparently unlimited wine most lunchtimes and every dinnertime!) so we always ate together as a group. Which meant that there were lots of opportunities for stimulating mealtime conversations. […]

Mykonos and Delos

The last few days of the holiday were split between the neighbouring islands of Mykonos and Delos. I’d wanted to visit the latter for many years – it is one of the most important archaeological sites in Greece. In Antiquity the island was sacred to Apollo, but was completely abandoned after the rise of Christianity, […]

Island Hopping

I’ve just returned from ten days island hopping by ferry in the Cyclades, on another of my archaeological holidays. The group met up on Santorini, and from there we caught a succession of ferries to Naxos, Mykonos, Tinos and Delos. It was a very interesting time to be in Greece, watching the economy crumble around […]

A Rodent Issue

The car mechanic gave me more unwelcome news this week. Not only was he charging me a small fortune to replace my radiator, he also informed me that I’ve got a “rodent problem”. Well, I know all about the chronic infestation in my loft – that’s why I have a pest controller on an annual […]

Radiator leak

I filled up the car with coolant on Sunday, and took it for a test drive to Tesco’s in Ledbury, about an eight mile round trip. It behaved fine – the temperature gauge rose quite rapidly to the “normal” point, but then stayed there unwavering. I did have a bit of a worrying moment when […]

Struggling up the hill

I was driving home from work yesterday afternoon and got stuck behind a very slow car going up the steep hill to British Camp. I had to drop down to second gear and crawl up the hill at 20mph, and my little mini clearly didn’t like it. The temperature gauge started climbing alarmingly, and the […]