19 August 1950 to 23 August 2015.
The slide show below are all new pictures. Many from prints, so the quality is a little variable. But that’s the price you pay for irreplaceable shots. The memories live on.
Lighting a Candle to Diddley
Every week, we remember Diddley and light a candle.
Lighting a Candle to Uncle Dennis
Uncle Dennis 15th July 1930 to 30 July 2018
So we lit a candle for each of them from Shelagh (above), Bobby and Trevor. Swifts Hill Slad where Diddley’s ashes lie.
Field of Autumn
Slow moves the acid breath of noon
over the copper-coated hill,
slow from the wild crab’s bearded breast
the palsied apples fall.
Like coloured smoke the day hangs fire,
taking the village without sound;
the vulture-headed sun lies low
chained to the violet ground.
The horse upon the rocky height
rolls all the valley in his eye,
but dares not raise his foot or move
his shoulder from the fly.
The sheep, snail-backed against the wall,
lifts her blind face but does not know
the cry her blackened tongue gives forth
is the first bleat of snow.
Each bird and stone, each roof and well,
feels the gold foot of autumn pass;
each spider binds with glittering snare
the splintered bones of grass.
Slow moves the hour that sucks our life,
slow drops the late wasp from the pear,
the rose tree’s thread of scent draws thin –
and snaps upon the air.
Laurie Lee ~ 1945
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Ooh la la la.
Ooh la la la, c’est magnifique.
Bobby, Bobby, Bobby, !!! You must come! We’ve found a wasp nest. You must come. (Your scribe for this week is me, Trevor. An honour to give you this remarkable story.) (more…)
100th Blog … Pt II: The Footbridge.
Dear Friends of Bertie…
This is momentous occasion. One that must start with a brief introduction from Bobby. (I said brief, Bobby…!)
I am writing this in a bus shelter in Westcott in Surrey. Very nice. Thatched.
My car is being serviced. And then it’s the school run to pick up Kyla. Got here an hour early.
When we lost Diddley, as so many people find in bereavement, you embark on a journey that is out of control at first. Lots of things to do. Arrangements. Funeral. Friends. Family. Learn to cook. Use the washing machine. No ironing. Well, only Bertie’s bow tie! Practical things that keep you very busy indeed. But then one day, when the dust has settled, for many of us you are living in a home full of memories. On your own. You know that your life will change forever. All the friends, families, self help books in the world cannot decide for you where to go next. They can help but one day hopefully you will wake up to the next day of the rest of your life. A time to be treasured, for you are still here and the world could be your oyster. I knew I liked talking to anyone in range. Felt that I had a flair for writing. I had started reading Spitalfields Life and saw the GA’s advert for a course in Spitalfields on how to write a blog.
Shall I shan’t I? Well I did as has been mentioned many times in the blog. For the course, we were asked to write a short illustrated story to be evaluated. I wrote about a footbridge I loved as a schoolboy. In the event it was not read out. But a bear called Bertie started writing his own blog with my assistance. And now, amazingly, we have written between us 100. So for 100 part 2 we are going back to that footbridge and my best friend Bertie will tell you all about it. Time to pick Kyla up.
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I’m worried about him. When he drives round a roundabout three times looking for his exit a mile from home late at night you might be concerned? Don’t be. He nearly got heat stroke at the Flying Legends Airshow. Many did! And it was midnight. He says he is worried about me. We haven’t asked Trevor. Not after he took my place at the Flypast…
Bertie: “Stone the crows and strike a light mate. One Hundred? Are you sure?”
Bobby: “Yes Bertie. This is your… ONE HUNDRETH BLOG! A century of stories. A week late after last week’s headache.” (Trevor is getting a little full of himself. More later).
Bertie: “Crikey! I wonder what Diddley would make of it?”
Bobby: “Well I can tell you that she knew, like all of us, she would meet her maker one day. More than anything she hoped that she would not be forgotten.”
Bertie: “Fat chance of that mate!”
This 100th blog is spread over two weeks, centred on where it all started. Spitalfields. The National Garden Scheme’s Spitalfields Open Gardens (see 31 Fournier Street) has been featured by the Gentle Author. All the gardens are behind the houses and you have to walk through them to the gardens. Here’s his take on it:
His student Bobby has a rather different take, dominated by me. The Bear that he created as Mindfully Bertie. And has now given rise to one hundred blogs!
Townhouse Fournier Street
Today is our ONE HUNDRETH BLOG. Or would have been. I am sick as a parrot, and decidedly Uncle Dick. The symptoms are… my bleedin ‘ead is coming orf! (more…)
I knew when he told me he was going to the ballet it would be a problem. It always is. Not Covent Garden, but a packed Dorking Halls. The Royal Opera House screening live to 1,500 cinemas in 35 countries. (more…)
Queen Mary’s Rose Garden. Regent’s Park, London.
Queen Mary’s Rose Garden in Regents Park is a world-famous garden named after the wife of King George V. In 1932, when Queen Mary’s Gardens opened to the general public, the first superintendent planted a rose garden, which was completed in 1934. (more…)
“Cuckoo, cuck-ooh, cuck-oooh…” Was Bobby half asleep? Maybe he was a little “cuckoo” himself! The days of waiting for the first “cuc … koo”, to confirm that summer really was here, seemed a distant memory. Hearing that evocative, unmistakable call again would be wonderful. Especially from his cosy bed at Laurel Cottage. The village is close to farmland and the Surrey Hills and we heard them every year until recently. For these birds have suffered a catastrophic decline, as detailed later. (more…)