Monday, 25 August 2014


                                          Mystery Object.

No mystery about this object. It's a box. It measures about three and a half inches by just over two inches by one and a quarter inches; therefore either a table snuff or a tobacco box. It has a silver escutcheon (blank), and a very complex hinge.
The questions are :-  When was it made, where was it made, and of what material was it made?

                                          Good guessing, and good night.


Published this photo, taken on Friday, of the North doorway of Uggleshall Church, mainly for the benefit of Crowbard, and in continuation of a discussion on 'comments'.  If you 'embiggen' this, Crowbard, I think it probably (neither of us being experts on early brickwork) indicates that the doorway is built of reused roman tiles (set edgeways) and bricks.

Sunday, 24 August 2014


On Friday we motored up to Southwold to the Saint Felix School Antique Fair. Bought one item, a late Georgian brass snuff box, with a combination lock in the lid. Work though to put it back in good order. Lunch with friends, followed by business, before we set out for home. Took a different way home, as there were very delaying roadworks in Blythburgh. Came home via a village I don't remember having visited before - Uggleshall.  If the original name was something like Uggle's Hall, makes me wonder who the original Uggle was? And if he deserved the rather horrible sounding name of Uggle; sounds like a big, hairy, ancient Brit, doesn't he?  The photos are all of Uggleshall Church, which certainly don't live up (or down?) to the name, as it's rather a pretty church. It is being rethatched, and a lovely job is being made of the  rethatching.

Suffolk, I'm glad to say,  is still full of  pleasant surprises.

Took this last one of Ann, who was delighted by this unexpected little Church.

Then back on the road and home via Blyford, Halesworth, Bramfield, and the A12.

Thursday, 21 August 2014


Very quick blog entry tonight - Ann went up to bed five minutes ago, and I told her I wouldn't be long following her. Took a snapshot (above) of a very good salad that Ann made as part of supper. She used the standard  contents but jazzed it up  with diced red peppers, geraniums, chives and chive flowers. Delicious! Split it between us as a side dish. To my mind - the only dressing a good salad really needs is a squeeze of lemon juice and a little salt.

                                                 Goodnight All.

Saturday, 16 August 2014


Realised it is a while since I showed a 'MYSTERY OBJECT'. Both of these photographs are mystery objects.   I think most of you will guess the purpose for which the above small box  was made. The point is - when do you think it was made, and most importantly
By the way, the inlaid stones in the lid are mother o' pearl and carnelian (I think).

Now this one really is a mystery object, and I must admit that I don't know the answer. I do know that it appears to be a piece chipped off a flint nodule a long time ago. It has then been decorated with a double line of dots and several lines cut into it, so that it resembles a beetle or 'scarab'. It is about one and three quarter inches long and just over an inch across. It came into my possession a good many years ago when I kicked it out of an ancient Suffolk trackway.     I would love to know where it was made and why. All (sensible) suggestions as to its origin gratefully received.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014


Once again - been a busy day. Got up early for 7.30 a.m service. Stayed and had a bite of breakfast (eleven people present). Later in the morning motored over to Manningtree, where we were due to meet a nephew- in- law off a train at midday to discuss...... family business. As he is a vegetarian, popped into town first to check the eating houses. Talked to the new landlord of the Crown Inn, who told us that he catered for vegetarians with a range of  four vegetarian main dishes. This seemed to give a  reasonable choice so nipped back out to the Railway Station and met Liam off the mid-day train. Back to the Crown which is a big, old fashioned country Inn. Manningtree is a small, narrow town on the south bank of the river Stour. Talked business over  a decentish lunch. We all three of us would have appeared, to a casual observer,  to have chosen the same dish (toad in the hole) but Liam's  had vegetarian sausages in it. I think we all enjoyed lunch. After lunch we ran Liam back to the station (trains run from Manningtree to London every half hour - the downside of this was that a recording of a lugubrious sounding lady kept announcing over the Tannoy that the eleven thirty train from Liverpool street was getting steadily later. It was now, she sighed, eighty four minutes late. She sounded as if she suspected that highwaymen had kidnapped it, and despaired of its ever being heard of again). I'm afraid we abandoned Liam to the mercies of our railway system (he seemed to have perfect confidence that he'd get back to London) and decided we were going to have a walk along the bank of the Stour, where we took today's two photographs.

Got home about four o'clock, had a quick zizz, changed into work clobber, and have been pottering about in the workshop ever since.

Good Night All.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014


On Sunday morning last got up quite early, because I had a clock to deliver and set up in our area - the dial clock I illustrated on Saturday. After that returned home and loaded car, because I had a second clock (a Suffolk made long case) to deliver to son Jonathan and partner Jude, near Cambridge,where, after setting up said clock, we had lunch with them. Jude had made a very traditional Sunday lunch; she knows our tastes. She gave us roast beef and yorkshire pudding with all the trimmings (roast and boiled potatoes, etc.), followed by a fresh fruit summer salad, then coffee. At around three o'clock back in the car and drove across to the midlands where we spent a couple of days with my brother (who blogs as Crowbard) and his wife Judy. We'd packed a balancing game for their granddaughter. It's an old one that our children (and eventually our grandchildren) liked. The above photo shows niece Jessica, Crowbard, and great niece Lottie, playing the game. Lottie loved it, and was very good at it - it requires a very steady hand.

As there was a summer storm coming up, Jess and Lottie drove home at about six. Just before they hit the road, Crowbard and I serenaded them by singing 'Good Night Lottie' to the tune of 'Goodnight Ladies' and set  to improvised words. This appeared to please young Lottie (who is three) greatly!
Afterwards, and about halfway through supper's first course ( a roast leg of lamb) the storm suddenly brightened, and I thought that, given the weather conditions, there might well be a rainbow. I excused meself to Judy, and stepped outside. There was a complete and DOUBLE rainbow (shown above) - the best I'd seen in years. In the middle of a perfect meal (Jude is a great cook!!!) it made an already pretty good   evening into a magic one!

The following morning we went to see an old friend who lives quite near Crowbard and Jude. He is an antique dealer I've known for forty (or possibly fifty) years. He sometimes has antique guns in, and this time he offered me a Brown Bess musket in very good condition. The only drawback was the price (exorbitant is the word that springs to mind !) so although tempted, I eventually left the gun and bought four pieces of pewter. This morning we went to a new, and nearby, antique centre, but found nothing buyable, so went on to a nearby garden shop that Ann and Jude always like. Had a light lunch there, then back to Carl and Jude's. Packed the car, and drove home, arriving here just after five p.m.   Been a lovely break.  Being called upstairs to supper, so :-

                                     Goodnight All.

Saturday, 9 August 2014


Been a good, busy day. This morning met up with four friends (Hilary, Ruth, Gloria and John) at our favourite farm shop for breakfast at 9a.m., which went on till just after eleven (lots of news to catch up on). It's becoming a very popular meeting place in our area - at least partly because the staff never try and hurry people!

Ann and I then went on to the Queen's head in a nearby village to a Birthday party being held by friends of ours, Barbara and Jim. It was Barbara's 65th birthday. Met a good many people we know, and a few new ones. We both thoroughly enjoyed the party.

Then home to put the finishing touches to a repair I did yesterday. It is a very large dial clock, the actual dial being eighteen inches in diameter. It's nice to think that later today it will be back in the building it's inhabited since it was made in about 1830 -40. It's very satisfying bringing a dead clock back to life, especially when the cause of the problem isn't too obvious. Had to strip the clock right down before I could see why it wasn't running. Got to go and arrange its re -instalment now.

P.s. Should have said the top two pictures are of corners of our garden. The middle picture shows, behind the urn, the fig tree I put in a couple of years ago. Today we picked this year's  first ripe figs from it. They were delicious!

Thursday, 7 August 2014


Been a good, busy week (so far). Long Melford on Wednesday. Spent Monday and Tuesday getting ready for it. This morning we went into the town, did various jobs, then on to David and Sue's for coffee (by arrangement). Then a wander round their lovely garden (David refers to it as 'the Estate', and although he's joking, it's not far out - it's a very large garden, in several different departments). The main garden is like a small meadow, with an orchard of fruit trees in the grass, and surrounded by flower beds. Lovely!  David gave us some fresh cut beans to bring home (which - being us, we forgot; but, David being David, he called round later and delivered them - they are good friends).  Later on both of us felt a bit lackadaisical (after Long Melford yesterday) so decided to go and have lunch at Hollowtrees, which was as good as ever.

Then pottered back home through the lanes around Linsey and Kersey. All the photos are of Linsey and were taken near the Church, or of the Church.

This picture and the third picture is of the Church porch, and I found meself wondering how many people (tramps, travellers, and homeless folk) have stood in the same position, looking along the porch towards the church door, and thought what a good place it would be to sleep of a summer night, the two stone benches would make convenient, if hard, beds, and are nicely raised off the ground. The porch faces South and sunrise on a summer morning would be a cheering sight to wake up to, I should think.

Must stop day dreaming, and get on and do some work. Got a couple of recently acquired snuff  boxes to clean.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014


walked into town this morning, and on the way home saw these flowers growing out of the cracks in the pavement outside the house of a friend of ours. Don't know what they're called (the flowers that is - I do know what our friends are called)  but aren't they pretty? (again - the flowers that is - you won't know if our friends are pretty or not).

Just shows- it pays to keep our eyes open.

P.s.It also shows that pronouns can give rise to problems.

Thursday, 31 July 2014


This is probably the last entry regarding this year's Scandinavian trip. The day before we left Sweden for Denmark Freja announced that she'd been looking at the map and had a request to make of her parents.  She explained that the area where we planned to spend  our last night in Sweden was very near to the longest beach in Sweden, So could they drive down there with us, so that we could all spend the afternoon on this very long beach (several miles long).  Her parents were agreeable (as were her grandparents) so the following day we had an early lunch and set off in two cars. We arrived at the beach, above, and found that despite it being a gloriously sunny day, the beach was not (by our standards) at all crowded.

Ruth, Tuva, and Freja (as above) ran into the sea, which Ruth afterwards reported was the warmest she'd ever known the sea to be.

There was a strong on-shore breeze blowing, so the three ladies waded out until every wave lifted them off their feet.  A very good time was obviously being had by all. When they eventually returned to the shore, Ann and I said our goodbyes, and drove back  to our hotel.

The following morning we began our homeward journey  (the reverse of the outward one) and eventually got home a fortnight ago last Sunday. My apologies for the broken and 'bitty' nature of this journal. I'm beginning to get the hang of this thing ( I hope) but the machine has been playing up quite badly.
Will persevere and, hopefully, normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.

Wednesday, 30 July 2014


This one should have gone in yesterday's blog entry. It was taken last Wednesday and shows -Elsa, her uncle Matthew, and her Great Grandmother Ann. Matthew seems to have inherited the family tendency to like- and get on with- very young children.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014


Last Wednesday we motored to London to introduce Elsa to her Great Grandmother.

Above shows (from centre - clockwise) Great Grandmother Ann, Grandmother, Liz, Mother Geogia, and Elsa.
P.s. Sorry, made a muck of that one. Will redo it Ack Emma.

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Sunday 2.

Ronneby Church, a lovely, early Church with quite superb wall paintings inside.

Our two Swedish granddaughters in a doorway of the above Church, making a fairly creditable stab at being resident gargoyles. Not entirely convincing, perhaps; but a good sporting effort nonetheless.

P.s. I mean; would any sensible man who valued a quiet life, describe any of his female relations as 'looking exactly like gargoyles' ?  Quod erat demonstrandum, as we used to write at the end of theorums in maths (and yes Crowbard/Rog, I know that last word should probably be theora)

Pedants !!!!!


Still struggling to publish pictures. However - took this photo of a striking looking butterfly near Ruth's cottages in Southern Sweden three weeks ago. Don't recall having seen one like it in England, and that's not altogether surprising, having looked it up. It's called the large copper butterfly, and the last recorded sighting of it in England was in 1851 !!!

Will keep trying to publish photos.

Thursday, 24 July 2014


Just to give you a well earned rest from our holiday snaps (and I know how boring other peoples holiday snaps are supposed to be, although I must admit that I can't remember finding them so meself, and I usually learn something from them) here is a :-

                                 MYSTERY OBJECT.

It is made entirely of wood (although there are a couple of old replacement nails in it now) and is nine inches long. Mechanical instrument; and  complete.
I purchased it in Denmark, two weeks ago, although similar ones were made and used in England.
Its purpose and date please?

Tuesday, 22 July 2014


 Above is the house we usually stay at in this area of Denmark. It is a very well run Guest House owned by a pair of semi-retired farmers, Elsa and John. The door on the left of the picture opens onto our room and bathroom. Elsa half wants to retire, but loves her home and knows that if she retired she couldn't afford to stay there, so soldiers on.

The following morning we drove on to try and find Ruth's new  (holiday) home on (or rather -near) the South coast of Sweden. We had to stop and take snapshots of the Trolle Lungby Slott (above).

 Above is one of Ruth's two new homes, which occupy a site of almost an acre. They look similar and both look rather like dolls' houses.

 Speaking of which, here is a real doll's house, the last one of four in Ann's collection of dolls' houses. We bought it with us in the back of the car ( under a blanket) for Ruth's girls; they have always loved it..

We took a walk along a river bank near the cottages. Above shows Tuva, Freja, Ruth, Ann, and Nipa.

During the walk Freja found and caught the above photographed frog. There is a good deal of fauna to be seen in the area, which the girls have been quizzing me about. In fact, earlier in the day they'd seen, what can only have been a slow worm from their description.

Think I must knock off now. More - probably tomorrow I think.
Good night Everyone.


A fortnight or so ago we set out for Harwich (the Esbjerg Ferry Terminal) to sail to Denmark. On the dock we passed the above mobile home with a father/son team at the wheel.

Once aboard I took a quick snapshot of our cabin with Ann admiring the view.

Took much the same sort of shot, with Ann unpacking, and meself reflecting near the window.

The following day after an excellent on-board breakfast, took the above shot, again from our cabin window. We are nearing Denmark with the sea full of wind generators - Don't know how the Danish can make these things pay, and we (reportedly) can't.

About a mile out from Esbjerg realised that the sandbank we were passing was full of seals (common and grey seals I think) sunning themselves on a passing sandbank (as Wodehouse might well have put it).

By late afternoon we had motored as far as Kerteminde, which is a lovely little harbour town, with, as it happened a recently opened fish buffet bar, where we ate. Then on to a Danish village antique shop where I usually seem to find goodies - this year was no exception.---- Thought I'd got another photo held in reserve, but perhaps not - or perhaps the machine is displaying its usual reluctance about allowing me  my picture ration.

Back in a minute - but no guarantees these days. Anyway - some success so far.

Monday, 21 July 2014


Got home yesterday afternoon from our (more or less) annual visit to Denmark and Sweden. Took lots of photos with the new camera, but regret to admit that you won't see them, as the machinary refuses to print them on the blog..  It was a good journey (both ways) - took photos of seals sunning themselves on sandbanks just outside Esbjerg.  Bought reasonably well - two clocks, some nice treen, early brass, and, in Denmark some neolithic stone implements. Met up with Ruth, Lasse, the girls, and Nipa the dog, after which a good time was had by all. If I can find some knowledgeable person who will teach my computer to behave itself - then normal service will be resumed as soon as possible. Don't hold your breath though as I fear that - once again- this blog will now  have to continue in verbal form only- well pro tem anyway. Looking at things philosophically, that will leave me with lots of time for  work, i.e. cleaning and repairing the recently acquired hoard of goodies (and I shan't even be able to show them as 'mystery objects' due to the machine's misbehaviour!)      Very annoying.

Saturday, 5 July 2014



There are two parts to this blog entry :-
You may remember that on June 18th I reported a dreadful road accident in our town, which resulted in the death of a three year old girl.  Her funeral was on Thursday in the United reform Church here. It was one of the most moving funerals I've attended. The church was full (about four hundred people, I would think). Her parents had suggested that as it was a child's funeral, cheerful colours should be worn. Her father joined in the service, friends read the lessons, and her older sister who is just ten gave the eulogy!  She was incredibly brave. She almost broke down a couple of times, but, supported by Paul, her father,  she carried on to the end of what she'd decided to say about her little sister. When she'd finished, a spontaneous round of applause broke out (in which, I confess, we wholeheartedly joined - never known such a thing at a funeral - but somehow, it felt 'right'). After the funeral, the hearse drove off towards the cemetery   at the other end of town, followed by about ninety- nine  per cent of the congregation (all of us who could physically make the three quarters of a mile walk along the High Street). It was a surprising sight to look along this colourful procession, winding its way along the High Street on foot, headed by the hearse, and as it passed all the shopkeepers came out onto the pavements and stood to attention with bowed heads in respect and sympathy. After the  words of the burial service had been read almost everyone scattered a little of the very dry earth onto the three foot long coffin.

Afterwards most of us walked back to the other end of town via the River Walk, which was restful.


Yesterday, Friday, fourth of July, we were woken by granddaughter Georgia on the telephone at just after six a.m. to report that at five a.m. she had given birth to Elsa Elizabeth Gumley, our first  Great-Grandchild;
So, OF COURSE, in the afternoon, I went to London by train to make the young lady's aquaintance.  First picture shows Georgie, Andy and Elsa. Next three photies are, I should think, self explanatory.  I DO like very young babies.  It's so easy to keep them happy.

                                 I wish you  all a very good day!!!