Last night we spent a very pleasurable couple of hours at a local Italian Restaurant to celebrate Zee's birthday. Halfway through the meal a very young couple of lads began to serenade the diners with classical music on electric guitar and bass. It sounds awful I know but it was actually rather pleasant. Then again, after half an hour or so I did wish one of them would spray lighter fuel over his geetar and start playing with his teeth. The youth of today, eh?
Also impressing last night were the girls, very grown up... particularly young Kay (11) happily taking the lead in ordering her starter and explaining to the waiter that she wanted just a "..small portion of spare ribs please". I'd have just mumbled to my parents about what I wanted at that age, certainly not to the waiter!
I mentioned my fears of large blooms on a little cutting when the buds appeared a few weeks back. This cannot be natural! The pot needs a table to stand on to stop the flowers dragging on the ground.
But maybe the most wondrous thing to me is that it's a plant for nearly-free. Even a small Brugmansia would set you back a fiver, yet this was a cutting taken a couple of months back, a few pence worth of peat-free compost and a little bit of TLC.
Excellent value. I'm sure the new parent will approve.
The full version of this picture of two damsels is specially for the three strange people who found their way here through the complicated search string "tits". The internet. The world wide web......and they googled "tits". And ended up here.
Have some imagination people!
More luck with my dragon hunting this week.... two dragons stalked until they rested close enough for a picture. I prefer the yellow one as (s)he appears to be smiling. Of course the beautiful blue one that got away was best of all.....
Friday night found Zee and I wandering around the Tate Modern at a special viewing of their "Art of the Garden" exhibition..... interesting would be the fairest comment I think. I'm pretty into gardens but not a great fan of paintings unless they're modern and weird. The photographs also were less than inspiring, with the exception of those of Derek Jarman's Dungeness garden which I've always found wonderful.... but these are excellent because of the subject rather than the photographic interpretation. Having said that, the photographer was himself largely involved in the garden so I guess we can give him points after all. But upon reflection 'tis hard to capture a whole garden in a photograph anway.... I've tried with my own small plot many times and not even come close.... I shall try harder!
So what are these two Skippers up to, eh? Is it they way they make lurve... or are they sulking after a disagreement over who gets the Nectar points?
Whatever it is they struck this pose for about ten minutes... and might still be there now if I hadn't got too close and scared them off.
I confess I'd forgotten about this story on the front of the Grauni
today, about the male UKIP MEP who's just joined the subcommittee for
women's rights... he wanted to deal with women's issues because, and I quote.....
"..I don't think they clean behind the fridge enough."
You can't parody that sort of thing, can you?
Anyway, I'd forgotten about it until I visited my favourite Digicam Review site and learnt of the new "female friendly" camera from BenQ. I'm unsure whether the female friendly feature is the red and pink tinge to the bodywork or the the handy feature that allows one to select frames for your pictures or even creatively scrawl all over them. Either way seems to be the most counter-productive press release I've seen in a long time.
But hang-on... there was some drawing over photos going on over at Witchy's t'other night....and while our favourite female photo-blogger was involved I seem to recall it started with the male half of the species........either way, maybe there's more of a market for a camera that enables you to draw over your pictures than I might otherwise have thought.
Well I was looking for Dragonflies but only came across Damsels.... quite pretty though.
Remember our tadpoles? Or our frogspawn even? Well, this weekend the littl'uns are leaving the cold and wet comfort of the pond for air filled excitement of the garden. Everywhere there are little finger-nail sized froglets. Some, like him above still with vestigial tales.
By a strange quirk of coincidence both teen Dee and teen-wannabe-Kay were sleeping over at friends houses last night (though in Kay's case I suspect very little sleep was had). So 't'was just Zee and I last night. Since we could find nothing worth watching at the movies we settled for a visit to a restaurant we haven't been to since the girls came. In fact it was one of the places we used to go with some friends who were also going through the adoption training thang. Had we really not been there for 5 or 6 years? Wow.
Then we returned home to watch Fargo on DVD.... Zee's father came in just before the end and nearly spoiled the end for her (her first time of watching) by alluding to the chipper scene... how young do you feel when your dad has seen cult films that you haven't?
You'll remember that survey for the Radiotimes online where I filled out my occupation as Kingmaker? Well obviously there weren't too many other of that profession as they asked if I want to go along and give further opinions on the site. £40 they want to pay me.... for an hour.... not enough after the hassle of getting there is it?
Oh well, elsewhere this flutterbye is a Skipper of some description....either a Small, Lullworth or Large probably. Strangely the size difference between the Large and Small Skippers is 16mm versus 14mm.... and getting a ruler alongside a Lepidopteranosaur whilst photographing it isn't easy.
The Lullworth Skipper at 15mm is, obviously, easy to distinguish.
Standing beneath the mightiness of the clock tower at Westminster I found myself humming the intro to Red Dwarf.... very spaceship-like it seemed.
Maybe you had to be there.
Ladybird, Ladybird, fly away home,
Your house is on fire and your children are gone,
What was that all about, eh? What did the poor species do to deserve such a thoroughly unpleasant rhyme?
And should any visitors from across the pond be wondering, no, they're not called Ladybugs.
It's haircut weekend at Planarchy Towers. First Zee, then me and finally (I thought) the garden which needed a major trim with the recent dampness. But then this morning up pops this young Great Tit who's clearly been at his own scalp with dad's strimmer.
Not really an acronym, R.N.L.I is it? But it was their turn to be shaking buckets outside my local Sainsburys today. 'tis a heartless task shaking tins or buckets in these plastic money days. I rarely carry any change and supposedly many others will have just used what coinage they do have for the stoopid tax. Thus it is imperative to get one's tactics right. When I used to shake a can I always found far more contributions from the opposite sex. So clearly you need a teams consisting of both genders.
But not standing too closely together.
If you show any signs of being a couple then the advantage is lost.
Anyway, I digress, I've never actually had need of the R.N.L.I. But did come close 15-20 years ago. I was on holiday in the beautiful Isles of Scilly with a few friends. One afternoon we decided to go out in a boat to do some fishing. The oars were different lengths, the rowlocks broke and the anchor refused to do its job. Pretty soon we were drifting towards the Land of the Free. And we didn't want to go there.... nothing personal, obviously.
Much frantic rowing (and a little rowing) and some paddling with hands and feet later we managed to get ourselves on course for a somewhat closer land mass than the U.S. of A.
After getting a tow back to our island we learnt from our landlady that she'd watched the entire affair through her telescope so we were never really in any danger. She'd found it quite amusing I think.
Huh! It seemed pretty scary at the time.
Just a little under two years ago the Planarchy Bleurg was launched at an unsuspecting and largely disinterested world. My first post (sorry I didn't know permalinks then so scroll down if interested), concerned our evening at the girls' School play. That performance was Dee's last before moving up to Secondary school. Last night it was Kay's turn for a swan song. And what a show! It was a delight nearly all the way through. Such enthusiasm and obvious enjoyment from all involved. Not to mention the best pastiche of Busted that i have ever seen. Not-so-young-and-taller-than-than-half-the teachers-Kay was a dancing Zombie a la Thriller.... a bit too smiley for a zombie but hey....... it is the end of term!
More fun than I've had for far too long.
And the picture is a grasshopper. Dhurrr!
..do mighty Brugmansia grow?
Well, we were talking about scale the other day and in the same vein I'm a little bit worried about the flower buds on this 4inch tall Brugmansia cutting. Regular visitors will know the parent plant from either the shot that appears randomly in the sidebar now and again or the pre-storm picture from a couple of weeks ago. But eight inch pendulous blooms are fine on a six foot tall plant..... I just think they might break this little cutting.
Until yesterday I was relatively proud of the selection of birds that visit our garden. But yesterday we were at my parents in sub-tropical Surrey. And they've got parrots flying in for a quick refill on the feeder. I've heard of the flocks that now inhabit the South East but never really believed it until now.
Further strange tales from my father who had just returned from a rather unsuccessful fishing trip to Russia. 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle and the temperature was 34°C. And it didn't get any cooler at sundown as the sun doesn't this time of year. Go down, that is.
It fooled even me at first, this one.
"We haven't got any flag irises," I thought. But that's OK because it's not a flag Iris... it just looks a bit like one since the scale is all wrong. Imagine lots of these little blooms about 1cm across and you realise it's a Lobelia after all.
Scale is important isn't it?
Remember that episode of "UFO" where they send a probe to the alien planet and it takes loads of pictures but with no distance or scale details? The boss says "But surely we can still work out some details?"... and they prove him wrong by taking a close-up picture of one of the pilots legs which he thinks is a lava formation.... the pilots were luscious purple wigged lovelies of course....( it was the seventies after all).
No? You don't remember that episode?
You don't even remember the series?
People, UFO was the first and finest real-people show that Gerry "Thunderbirds" Anderson ever did.
Remember the ill wind that trashed my banana palms last week? Well look at them now! A large leaf has emerged and begun to unfirl from the snapped off main trunk. Hurrah! This also means that next winter I can cut them down a bit rather than rebuild my wicker man.
Suddenly those scriptures begin to make sense, for as it says in the 1,000,009th Psalm "Blessed are the bananas, for they will be reborn."