The Life and Times of this Old Git

Location: Teignmouth, Devon, United Kingdom

I'm married with two grown up children and four grandchildren, My wife of 47 years is Sue and we are the same age. My two children are Pamela (blogging occasionly under and Roy,who was recently Paralysed from the waist down due to an Absys on his Spine. My 4 grandchildren are (oldest first) Gavin, Hayley, Thomas,and Zoe. Sue and I are both retired and we're disabled too, her with a badly Arthritic back and spine, me with lung (COPD) and Heart problems.I have always loved Fishing (all sorts) Sue started fishing with me about 8 years ago, now she really enjoys it too. We both love m'cycles and m'cycling, Sue owns and rides her own bike which is a Custom 1981 250 Honda.I own a 1979 Honda CX500. We are both members of this motorcycle club ( view or join our club on or see my blog post Dec 2007 blog "Getting old, never", of course we're badly resticted now due to our illness, only riding in really good weather.Just over three years ago we lost our best friend and Baby Mojo the border Collie, Gone but never forgotten. Please feel free to use any of our photo's but do let me know you have used them, thank you.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

40th DORSET STEAM FAIR (Finale).

So here we are at the Steam fair Finale, I expect most of you by now are thoroughly bored with these blogs, so all I can do is, say again "You really MUST go next year". Dates are fixed at 2nd to 6th sept 2009.This as the last Blog on this subject means I'm afraid that it contains lots of pictures that I wanted to share and use on these blogs. We are so excited by the thought of next year we are looking to stay at least one night.The site has full Camping/Caravaning facilities plus loads of local B & Bs or Hotels.
Now to the Blog, below we have just one of the dozens of beautifully restored Steam engines. This particular one was originally a steam Fire engine.
Please do click on any photo to Enlarge and enjoy further.
Below this lovely engine was once owned by the famous Rowland family who, are still in the fair bussiness today.

Below this nice "Old girl"started or at least was once local to us at "Exmouth".
Below, The amount of Mechanical as well as cleaning work that needs doing to keep these vehicles in this condition is quite staggering.
"David and Goliath" as these two lovely old engines chugged past side by side.
As I have explained in previous blogs the diversity of this show has to be seen to be believed. So below we have what would probably be known as "Gypsy" or "Romany" style vans. Of this style there were several that were pulled by horses to the site and then used as living quarters for the duraton of the show.
This absolutely stunning example (below) was just one of the ones that the owners used for living in.
Below they must have been really snug but perhaps a bit dark when the stable type door was closed up.
Below "Gypsy Rose Sue" or something, and another lovely example of horse drawn van. Enlarge these piccies to see the paintwork detail.
For you Farmers there were all ages and sizes (60) of Tractors parading and working daily in this Arena.
Below, For you Craft and Hobby lovers there were over 150 stalls and exibitions/demonstrations. This "Marquee" was three joined in length totaling over 200metres long by 20 metres wide.
Below and even more things on display in this huge Indoor area.
AND FINALLY below, just as we left it was getting dusk and what a stunning site this made with all the engines fired and all lit up too.

What more can you say, I was impressed, Flabergasted, Gobsmacked what ever you can say it all fits, in all A FABULOUS FAMILY DAY OUT.
Joke of the day.


Your sweetie says, 'Let's go upstairs
And make love,' and you answer,
'Pick one; I can't do both!'

Your friends compliment you
On your new alligator shoes
And you're barefoot.

A sexy babe catches your fancy
And your pacemaker opens the garage door,

'Getting lucky' means you find your car
In the parking lot.

An 'all nighter' means not getting up
To use the bathroom.


You are not to sure that these are jokes?

Thursday, September 25, 2008


I thought today I would share a few photo's with you, all the ones on this blog were all taken during this year whilst out on bike rides. I know its going to be boring for a few of you but bear with me for some of the scenary is lovely.
Below this picture was taken high on "Exmoor" between "Dulverton" and "Lynton".
Perhaps at this point I should say both Sue and I have attempted to rekindled a little of our our lost youth by a couple of years ago buying a Motorcycle each. Back in 1980 and 81 I had, first a second hand then a new "Honda CX500" and in 1982 Sue had a new "Honda CM250T", obviously when we became born again bikers we purchased ourselves the same models and we love them.
Below Yesterday at "Dunkery Beacon"just outside of "Wheddons Cross" this part of "Exmoor" is the highest point in Somerset (over 1700 ft) and gives stunning 360 degree views, it was a shame it was cloudy this day.It has been claimed that on a clear day it is possible to see 16 counties from up here.

This picture below was taken just yesterday (Wednesday) on a ride out to "Exmoor" around "Withypool"," Tarr Stepps" and "Challacombe"area's.This lovely roadside area of "Landacre" bridge is used as a picnic and paddling area, especially when the children are off school.
This picture below takes in the view from the road that skirts the sand dunes at the famous Surfing Town of "woolacombe". This road is around 650 meters long and was designed purely as a car park, it has parking for around 500 to 6oo cars, also a clean modern toilet block. Each space has in front of it a small grassy area to sit, picnic etc and the views from here really are something else. On warm summer days the air is full of "Hang Gliders" that push off from the 200ft high hills behind you and circle the area.
This picture was taken last week when we went for a ride onto the "Braunton Burrows" using the Toll road. This road follows part of the the Torridge/Taw estuary right down into the famous sand dunes that are the Burrows.This picture was taken at low water and looks across toward the old (RAF) camp at "Chivenor". If you enlarge this picture you can just make out servicemen in training running across the bridge, then having to do several press ups in the estuary mud.

The shot below was taken from a private car park overlooking the cliffs between "Morthoe" and "Woolacombe". We have done this stunning 2+ mile coastal walk before, it is hard but brilliant.
Below, We took this shot at the "Valley of the Rocks". This is just outside "Lynton & Lynmouth" on beautiful "Exmoor".
This is another "Valley of the Rocks" shot.
Below absolutely typical it had been a lovely sunny afternoon, until, we got the Camera out then up rolls the Cloud, never mind. This picture was taken as you approach "Downend"at "Croyde Bay" N Devon.
This picture below was taken in "Perranporth, Cornwall" on the day we searched unsuccessfully for our club's Cornish rally site.
Below, Try as we bloody might we just could not manage to ride our bikes up this hill as the signpost requests !!!!!. Picture again taken at the "Valley of Rocks", Lynton.

Joke of the Day.


1920's, 30's 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's !!

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us and lived in houses made of asbestos.

They took aspirin, ate blue cheese, tuna from a can, and didn't get

tested for diabetes or cervical cancer.

Then after that trauma, our baby cribs were covered with bright

coloured lead-based paints.We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets or shoes,not to mention,the risks we took hitchhiking.

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.

We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle.

Take away food was limited to fish and chips, no pizza shops,

McDonalds, KFC, Subway etc.Even though all the shops closed at 6.00pm and didn't open on the

weekends,somehow we didn't starve to death!

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE

actually died from this.

We could collect old drink bottles and cash them in at the corner

shop and buy fruit, sweets and Chocolate.

We ate cakes,biscuits white bread and real butter and drank soft fizzy drinks with sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because.....


We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we

were back when the streetlights came on.

No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K.

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. We built tree houses and secret dens and played in Stream beds with matchbox cars.

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no

mobile phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms.........

WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.

Only girls had pierced ears!

We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

You could only buy Easter Eggs and Hot Cross buns at EASTER really!

We were given BB guns and Catapults for our 10th birthdays,

We drank milk laced with Strontium 90 from cows that had eaten grass perhaps

covered in nuclear fallout from the atomic testing at Maralinga in


We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or

rang the bell, or just yelled for them!Mums didn't have to go to work to help dad make ends meet!

Footy had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment.

Imagine that!!

Our teachers used to belt us with big sticks and leather straps and

bully's always ruled the playground at school.

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!Our parents got married before they had children and didn't invent stupid names for their kids like 'Kiora' and 'Blade'

This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever!

The past 70 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned


And YOU are one of them!


You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow

up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated our lives,for our own good.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

TINTAGEL (Cornwall) Home of King Arthur?.

So here we have it "Tintagel" home of "King Arthur"?. These stories have been recorded for over a thousand years. Any person from any English speaking Country must have heard of this much Fabled King. His exploits and adventures were also shared with tales of his bride to be "Guinevere", also "Merlin" the Wizard,"Sir Lancelot"and other "Knights" of the round table, plus of course the story of the magical sword "Excalibur"and its part in battles to keep "Camelot" and fight against his enemies including fire breathing Dragons.I have not done a lot of research myself but the consensus of what I have read seems to be that 80% is Fiction, including" King Arthur" himself. Shame I enjoyed those stories when a little younger.For anyone interested in the legend try this site.
Tintagel is on the North Coast of Cornwall in a very Picturesque area.The town itself is tourism based around the remains of this 13th century Castle. The castle was according to some historians built around 1140 ish by the then Earl of Cornwall Reginald, and was probably used until the 1800s. It stands on a huge granite stack high above the sea (a lot has surrendered to the sea). An ideal spot for a Castle or hill fortress.
So now to our visit, it was a pleasant sunny day in Devon so we decided a trip to Cornwall was the order of the day, on arriving Tintagel was decided upon. The village car park is around 600mtrs from the climb up to the Castle itself, (I'm glad i brought my Oxygen). From here on its its absolutely lovely with stunning Coastal views, BUT if you are not at least fairly fit and active please DON'T GO, admire it from there. From the pay gate throughout its all up and down with if I remember a total of over 600 steps if you use them all.
THIS IS A LONG BLOG. Please click on any picture to enlarge it.
Below the start of the Castle walk, you can see the path off to your left, (although there is a way to the right).
After you enter and climb on any one of the Battlements, (below) this is the sort of view of the Castle, which is now divided in two due to erosion. Enlarge this image to see just some of those killer steps leading up the hills.
Below, again by enlarging this you can get more idea of the size and scale of the place. There is plenty of interest all about you, with information boards and maps everywhere.
This grassy Plateau was apparently used in olden times to winch stores, supplies etc straight up from the sea to save the arduous land journey.
These building remains (below) were believed to be servants quarters.
Here below we have the remains of lots of little buildings, these were part of the main Castle.
Below more ruins and remains. I believe an archeological dig in the 1950-60s turned up quite a few interesting finds from right through the ages.
SO...... right here we have it.......the start of those bloody stairs, hundreds of em. On the day I was very pleased with myself because when we saw someones Brochure/Guide book Sue said she didn't think there would be anyway that I could get all round this place. Red rag to a Bull to me so here we are.
Another different lot of steps, you can see what i mean by having to be fittish or determined.
And yet more steps (below), you can just see the edge of more ruins on the skyline.

Here we have it then a lovely place even though it can be hard.
Joke of the day.

A man walks in to his bedroom to find his wife packing a lge case
He asks, 'What are you doing?'
She answers, 'I'm moving to London . I heard prostitutes there get paid £400
for doing what I do for you for free.'
Later that night, on her way out, the wife walks into the bedroom and sees her husband packing his suitcase.
When she asks him where he's going, he replies,
'I'm coming too I want to see how you live on £800 a year'.


Tuesday, September 16, 2008


So here today we have part 4 of the Dorset Steam Fair blog, this one is mainly about Transport over the years. I'm afraid I know very little about most of these Lorries, Vans, Buses etc, I also didn't write down the Make/Model on these pictures, sorry.
So above an old "Bedford"which looked to me distinctly like a converted Ambulance.
Below, Lets start with something most Men can appreciate a Beer Barrel Lorry.
Please do click on any of these pictures to enlarge them, also to see others in the background.

Below, This Milk marketing Board Lorry was a Thames Trader, whatever that was.
This lovely "Morris" van, I do remember these being in regular use whan I was young.

This type of"Bedford" (CA I think) van,was one I used to drive a lot in my "Twenties" and brings back lots of memories.
Here below we have "Foden" and an "ERF" flatbed lorries, both in beautiful condition.
Below, a "Bedford" single Decker Bus or coach, they were the same thing in the 50s. I remember going off on several village outings on these, mainly to our nearest "Seaside" resort "Weston Super Mare". I also rember going to the "Model Village" at nearby "Bourton on the Water", at that time I lived in Stratford upon Avon.
This picture below has me completely stumped as to make or model.
Below, A big green Double Decker Bus, this "Skegness" one was made by "Bristol" motors.
Again below, I know nothing about this flatbed Truck except that its Livery is of the Brewery "White Shield".
Below this flat bed lorry has the "Hughes & Sons" livery on it, but i know little more.
Finally, no Fair blog would be complete without an Organ. this lovely edition played quite a few recognisable tunes, the one playing is one of these.

Monday, September 15, 2008


Todays blog is all about the Birds that visit our bird table and feeders at our Caravan in North Devon. We have lots more to put on at a later date. Most of the pictures were taken through the 22 year plastic windows in the van so I apologise for some picture quality.
Please do click on any photo to enlarge it.
Below a real favourite of ours the very attractive Nuthatch.
Below, the good old fashioned British Robin, probably the best known of our British birds.
This Song Thrush picture was one of only a few actually taken outside (not through a window) so quality is a little bit better.This Nuthatch (below) isn't in the slightest bit "Fazed" by the camera and often seems to pose, possibly saying "What do think your looking at".
Below, Here we have a Blue Tit about to "tuck in".
I had never seen a Nuthatch (below) close up until recently, now we have a pair, possibly three visit us regularly.
A Cock Chaffinch at the feeder, one of these males is so greedy, sometimes staying for 5 or 6 minutes stuffing himself.
Below, a Hen Chaffinch sitting inches away from us on our outdoor bench, she was just happily sunning herself.
Below a double on the Sunflower hearts, a Greenfinch and a Blue Tit (I think).
Again I have to apologise about the quality of some photo's, below a Coal Tit.
Below another Coal Tit.
Here Below we have a Hen Greenfinch.
We are constantly taking new Bird photo's so i will post another blog on them during the winter months.
Joke of the day.

After every flight, Qantas pilots fill out a form, called a "gripe
sheet," which tells mechanics about problems with the aircraft. The mechanics correct the problems, document their repairs on the form, and then pilots review the gripe sheets before the next flight.
Never let it be said that ground crews lack a sense of humour.

Here are some actual maintenance complaints submitted by Qantas' pilots (marked with a P) and the solutions recorded (marked with an S) by maintenance engineers.

By the way, Qantas is the only major airline that has never had an accident... Enjoy!

P: Left inside main tyre almost needs replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tire.

P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.

P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit.

P: Dead bugs on windshield.
S: Live bugs on backorder.

P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.

P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.

P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.

P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what they're for.

P: IFF inoperative.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.

P: Suspected crack in windshield.
S: Suspect you're right.

P: Number 3 engine missing.
S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

P: Aircraft handles funny. (I love this one!)
S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

P: Target radar hums.
S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.

P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.

And the best one for last..................
P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
S: Took hammer away from midget