#199 theoldmortuary ponders

Sometimes it is hard to know quite how to tie everything together for a blog. Today is one of those days and thank goodness I have this gorgeous rope, found at Delamore Arts earlier in the week, to tie things together.

Today was a huge red letter day for a good friend of ours who went to Buckingham Palace to collect an MBE from the Princess Royal.

On a far less significant scale we got a lovely Whatsapp message saying how much a family member has enjoyed yesterdays blog about St Just in Roseland.

Such a lovely thing to say.

And finally in this odd little blog the dogs had a red letter day because I had a contretemps with a bus on the way to work this morning. Minding my own business in a traffic queue a bus approached from behind and attempted to underpass me in the bus lane and ripped off my wing mirror with an enormous bang. The bus did not pull in or stop. No harm to me at all but I was so cross with myself because I had nothing to hand to take down the bus registration. I vowed to follow it but then a traffic light got between me and my target. This kind of stuff just requires so much admin to resolve and it put me in a grumpy mood. So grumpy that I couldn’t be bothered to pull on my wetsuit to go for the Wednesday evening bob. But that is where the dogs got their red letter day. I decided to take them to the sea for their evening walk while the bobbers were doing their thing. The dogs never usually come with us. I calmed my grumpy soul by sitting on the steps that lead into the sea and the dogs looked on as the bobbers bobbed.

The sea worked its magic, my grumpies left and the dogs had the excitement of welcoming the bobbers back in after a long and challenging swim.

Three very different stories all tied up with a beautiful knot.

#148 theoldmortuary ponders

Morning mist cleared, yesterday, to reveal a very blue day, all fresh and twinkly. We had plans to catch a ferry to the local park which is just across the river in Cornwall.

A very low tide and being the first customer gave me the chance to take this photograph of the sweep of the slipway. Four of us had planned a combined dog walk, we gained an extra dog as another friend has succumbed to the dreadful non Covid virus. So Ralph joined us, very much dressed to have a blue day.

We were early enough to see the heat rise from a freshly manured flower bed. Surely a sign that Spring is here.

Also a sign that writing a daily blog can affect the way you respond to things. The fountain should be the star of this photo but I am more thrilled to have captured the steam rising from the flower bed behind.

A day out with dogs can have its moments and the dogs took off, unleashed, into the formal gardens where a gardener shouted at us for their bad behaviour. To be honest it could have been a recorded warning as we never saw the actual gardener at the time. So intent and camouflaged, was he, with his bush trimming that the only evidence of the man himself was his fury.

The whole incident must have un nerved me because after that I failed to take any further photographs for the blog and it is a spectacular location. Our walk was always going to be shorter than the location deserves as a trip to the dentist was planned and a friend was coming over for the afternoon. We have decorated three rooms since she last visited and she has undergone a few medical procedures so stairs are currently not her friend. So we employed technology to show her round the upstairs rooms.

Another friend was supposed to be presenting the interior design improvements but probably won’t get a call any time soon for real TV work, as waving and clambering in the bath does not make particularly slick viewing.

Still photography may have done the job more effectively but would not have caused quite the same levels of mirth and merriment.

A day well filled with people and moments.

#82 theoldmortuary ponders

Raindrops keep falling on my blog/dog/seal.

Betwixt and between, hovering, damply between Christmas and the New Year. Hovering also in some marshy uncertainty of the Pandemic and the worlds route forward.

Traditionally this is a time of walking and enjoying fresh air and inspiring views. As spectacle wearers there has to be some expectation of reasonable weather. Today is not that day.

Todays walk was a blurry meander with the sole purpose of doggy elimination. Not the sort that has clearly annoyed a neighbour. We are very responsible dog owners.

Lovely use of a festive gift label, top marks for recycling. The specificity of this message is gorgeous, were I to have a large brown bear would his defaecation really be as welcome as this sign implies?

The high and turning point of todays walk is when both dogs have done a poo, texture and quality are discussed before it is cleared away swiftly and hygienically. ( Should you be interested we have passed through the days of over indulgence of turkey to the normalcy of regular eating and bran flakes)

Even Miss Spearmint feels a little disappointed in the weather. What is the point of hauling out on a dark background if there are not many photographers about.

#43 theoldmortuary ponders

©Gilly Bobber

Sunbay morning walk. Meeting and natterings with morning swimmers whilst we were snug and warm in the many layers that are required for an early morning dog walk. Knowing full well that this bright and beautiful morning will progress to an equally bright and beautiful sunset which is when we will plunge into the chilly waters of Firestone Bay for our weekend swim.

I suspect there was a frost this morning, the autumn leaves on the pavements looked a bit ravaged and damp when we set off. They still held a myriad of messages for the dogs to sniff and respond to, which slowed us down a good bit. As did searching for an autumn coloured dog poo ( or two) in the pile of leaves that was chosen for the morning elimination.

There is a new character hanging around in our changing area, taking in the sun while straddling a nail and a limpet shell.

Just how every super hero should spend a Sunday.

#31 theoldmortuaryponders

It has been complicated. In truth not much has gone on in the last 36 hours apart from wallpapering or thinking about wallpapering. Almost no time to ponder really, especially in daytime hours when natural light was essential to our pattern matching. The new-to-us house is built almost at the top of a hill and runs down the hill northwards and westwards. Such was the diligence of Georgian builders, that to gain the appearance of symmetry and regular shaped rooms some very odd wall angles and floor levels disguise the almost 30 degree slopes in two directions. This does not make wallpapering easy. Dog walking has, of course, continued and, thank goodness for this blog, the night walk is illuminated and interesting. The window above overlooks the green where the dogs like to snuffle, overlooked by model cows and fairy lights..

The cows are a reminder that the whole of the Royal William Yard was a factory for stocking up Royal Navy ships for long voyages at sea. The green, where we walk the dogs, was used by livestock that had recently been delivered, live by sea,and would soon pass through the slaughtehouse to be processed and packed onto ships. The view below is the one taken from the tunnel that leads onto the green.

The green is also well stocked with deck chairs. A reminder of pre-Covid times when we could come here to watch Open Air Cinema, Live Theatre or live streamed sports events.

On the other side of the yard we walk along the side of the River Tamar and Stonehouse Creek. A business and industrial area that is always lit up at night.

The path we take runs along the length of the Royal William Yard. As luck would have it I took a photo of this side of the yard last week from the Tuesday river cruise.

There are many different routes for us to take each evening, although winter walks stick to the areas that are well lit and dry underfoot, most evenings on the route home we see the same message. Which works just as well for the end of todays blog.

#8 tholdmortuary ponders

October days that are this bright need to be enjoyed to the max. Our weekend plans were slightly derailed by circumstance but with the weather still good we decided to carry on with our plans to visit Exmouth and Dart Farm. Both places are familiar to us but there has been a gap of more than ten years since our last visit.

Dart Farm is a farm shop selling lovely fresh produce, some of which they grow themselves, and home and beauty products. There is a massive outside area with picnic tables and walks and trails around the crops.

The pumpkin fields were beautiful and not just with brash show off pumpkins, the dark greens of this picture are just mesmerising.

Leeks, Chard and cabbage were gorgeous on our sunny walk and so unusual to be this close to fields of growing veg. After an hour or so we bought some picnic stuff and set off for the coast with two already exhausted dogs.

Exmouth has a huge length of beach and, thanks to Victorian Architects and Town planners, an equally long promenade that runs the length of the beach. We started as far away from the town as possible at Orcombe Point and made our way towards the town.

Miles of a view like this. Exmouth has so much sea and promenade and yesterday it was dotted with people harvesting vitamin D and a late tan from the comfort of chairs and blankets. After two summers of the British actually taking holidays in Britain, Exmouth looks very fine, jaunty even. Embellished by hard work and two years of holiday makers cash the whole area looks rejuvenated, dusted off and ready for anything. Ready for anything did not describe 4 human legs and 8 canine legs after our days walking in two locations. Time to jump in the car and head for home.

Not this car of course, a very proud owner would have almost certainly chased us off and we just didnt have the legs left to risk it.

Pandemic Pondering #564

Back on the road to familiar places. First stopping at Strong Adolpho for a coffee. Pre-pandemic this was a regular drive to a regular destination. Mawgan Porth has always been a favourite beach, gone are the heady days of family meet-ups, things change but the geography and feel of the place remains. The weather is definitely at the scraggier end of Scrag End of summer. In truth we have had warmer Christmas mornings on this beach.

Once again we have the right clothes to make the weather just a minor irritation. Hugo got his dancing paws out.

Lola has a tiny bit of holiday ennui. She is in season and her freedom is slightly curtailed while there are other dogs on the beach. Like an artful teenager she has one eye on holiday romance while conforming to the family traditions of bracing walks in inclement weather.

Once there is no one else around she is free to be off the lead and scampering at our heels only stopping briefly to leave an alluring flavour of herself on unsuspecting cliff edge plants in the hope that some canine lothario can track her down.

Pandemic Pondering #535

Back to the usual morning dog walk. In the hours we have been back from the weekend sojourn to Wimbledon, dog walks have been slow paced affairs. We have only lived in our current location for a couple of months. The dogs obviously dont feel that their cachet of news filled wee stops is quite extensive enough to keep in the canine loop while away for three days. Yesterdays home return walks were very sniffy, news gathering, affairs with many replies needing to be sprinkled en route. This morning there was canine disdain when their usual early morning routine was disrupted by a closed footpath. I managed some lovely photos but they are unmoved by such things .

The footpath will be closed for two weeks. This will upset the dogs but it is also the footpath that leads to our regular ‘ bobbing’ beach , our regular haunt for the whole of the pandemic!

While the dogs are sniffingly detained on information gathering I am sometimes left standing around a bit. This morning I noticed two lifting rings on an old manhole cover.

One of them had been quite crumpled. It is really hard to imagine what could possibly have caused such harm, but I am very glad not to have been standing in the same place when the damage occured.

Pandemic Pondering #533

Some more hot, September days, this weekend spent criss crossing Wimbledon Common. The early morning dog walk also took in a fair bit of the common, inadvertantly, when I took a track to avoid a nasty sounding dog altercation and failed even a tenderfoot forest navigation.

I found more Womble summer camps.

Discarded and empty now all good Wombles are back on the job of caring for the Common.


I managed to get some perspective on post industrial heritage.

And found a memorial rose to a long dead tennis player.

All before breakfast.

Pandemic Pondering #516

Hot on the heels of yesterdays morning blog is an evening blog of the same day, and two pictures from the exact same position with only a dog walk between them. Between yesterdays blog and this one lies the path of a day taken up by stuff, complicated by maintainance work on a local bridge. A normal 20 minute journey swelled to fill an hour and I missed an appointment. Rebooked for two hours later I filled my time with delivering brochures for an upcoming Open Studios event.

And took a trip to the supermarket. The appointment required me not to drive for two hours after so I was ‘forced’ to enjoy a late lunch in a friends garden and soak up the sun whilst my eyes returned to a normal, not blurry, way of life. Time then to head for home and get all the day jobs done. Before heading out for the evening dog walk which provided the two pictures that top and tail this blog. Since moving, our evening dog walk always takes in the area around the Royal William Yard, especially since the evenings have started to get darker. Royal William Yard is a collection of Military Buildings in Plymouth.


Between the two photos we walked up to a meadow and the dogs chased each other inside the old, second world war gun emplacements of Devils Point.


I’m sure the longer we live here the more the history will soak into our bones but right now every slab of concrete is a complete mystery to us.

Returning to our original position, night was properly upon us.Time to turn our twelve feet for home.