Looking For An Oasis In This Blur

My God life is busy right now. It’s an expected symptom of both Louise and I working long hours I suppose, but with the hustle and bustle of Christmas, during which Louise had one day off, and everything else that goes on in real life we are dizzy at the moment.

I know Louise is feeling it especially. In her job as district nurse she’s working like a mad woman. Eleven or twelve visits a day leaves little time for lunch or sensible thought and in the odd few hours that she’s at home a vegetative state is required to give her body the chance to recover. I’m not too different to be honest although I am grateful that my job doesn’t involve things that ooze puss, discharge or any of the other bodily fluids she tells me all about.

There are DIY decorating projects half-finished all around the house and I really should be doing one of those now, but to be frank I’m just too tired. Louise has been working all weekend so I’ve been on tidying, washing and soon to be ironing duty and still haven’t done the other stuff I should have, like take all the xmas crap to the tip…yep, that’s how far behind we are. I also had Mustard’s first gig of 2017 last night and as much as I really enjoy my hobby, a late night at my age takes about three days to recover from.

So it is safe to say that we are all gazing longingly at the upcoming holiday in April. It is a hazy mirage seen through the whirling dervish of reality. We can almost make it out now but there is still a long way to travel before we can luxuriate in its sunny, relaxed loveliness. As much as I have moaned a bit about the lack of time we have planned in theme parks, right now, that week on Siesta Key Beach is looking pretty good. I may be bored out of my mind on day three but I plan to sleep for the first two beach days anyway.

As weekends go, I’ve had better then. There’s been pretty much zero relaxation time and this was reduced even further yesterday when I had to take an unexpected trip to the opticians. I had allowed myself a lie in until at least 9.30, with the dogs joining me once Louise left for work, as they normally do, for what I thought would be the useful peaceful lie on the bed. I must have drifted off to sleep as when I woke up and wandered to get my glasses from their usual resting spot on the radiator cover I stood on something that I didn’t recognise. With a puppy in the house it was a change for that not to be liquid or at least soft but on closer inspection I couldn’t believe what I was seeing…and not because I didn’t have my glasses on.

What I picked up were the mangled remains of what were my spectacles. In disbelief I plotted Bean’s death for a good few minutes and then proceeded to pointlessly wave them in front of her face whilst swearing a lot. Her confused expression and wagging tail suggested she wasn’t clear on the message I was trying to get over.


So my plans of a tip run and some decorating evaporated and I ended up having to do the unimaginable and drive into actual town on a Saturday and go to a shop. Having only had my glasses for a few months, the optician could quickly re-order what I needed. It was slightly less easy to hand over the huge sums of cash necessary for them to do that. They will be ready next week and in the meantime I am wearing my old pair. They are a fractional improvement on total blindness.

So life is a bit of a blur for me for more than one reason right now. I either need it to speed up a little more, like fast forwarding the adverts, until we hit April 10th or it would be nice to be a little less busy for a bit so we can all catch our breath. I’m off to the next task now….

Till the next time…..

Look At My Ageing Baubles…

Thank you to you all for your kind wishes and lovely comments on last week’s post. If I could I would invite you all to the wedding but I’m tight so I won’t. That looks like it will be in 2020 by the way, which is a pleasingly long time off giving us some time to eBay our every possession to fund a wedding that a Russian Oligarch may find opulent (probably).

Louise has been working this weekend tending to the weeping sores and boils of the Bolton community which has meant that the enormous responsibility of putting the xmas decorations fell onto the shoulders of Emily and I. Louise normally does it as that is simpler than us doing it and then her re-doing it all shortly afterwards. She is quite particular about such things and to be fair it pays off as out tree always looks lovely.

So I did the wise thing and just did the heavy lifting of locating the tree, assembling it and moving around all the furniture to accommodate it in the nominated space. I then bowed out gracefully and left Emily to execute this year’s colour scheme.

She did well and the final result passed the ultimate test and not one bauble was moved. As we found the suitable baubles to match the instructed colours we did of course come across some blasts from the past.


The fact that a delicate bauble has survived pretty much intact in our house for fifteen years is a Christmas miracle. Some though have not fared quite so well and the ravages of time, so familiar to my aging body have not been kind.


Safe to say he did not make the tree this year. The theme was not shabby woolen tat.

Once complete Emily captured the dogs posing in front of it.



Don’t worry, they got the doggy treat Emily was dangling above them to get them to pose like that.

My four-day working weeks continue and it is lovely to think that I now only have eight more days at work until my long festive break. I may spend the entire fortnight in my dressing gown and a food coma.

As we move closer to Christmas then our holiday moves into sharper focus too. We’ll need to be getting our Disney park tickets early in the new year so that we are in position to do our FastPass + bookings in February. I think we’re going to go with one of those Magic Your Way things as we only have four days in Disney. Did I mention that we have a lot to cram in? Those 4 day hoppers are currently around £312 whereas a 14 day ultimate is about £100 more each. Normally I like to have the flexibility to be able to pop into to Disney at any time but with time so tight and the price difference it just isn’t worth it.

We can pick up the Universal tickets just before we leave with no such incentive to have them 60 days before we get there. I wonder how long it will be before they cotton on to that.

By the way, after I highlighted the cabana nonsense a couple of weeks ago, did anyone see the news about the “express” bus service being offered at WDW? $15 a day per person to get some sort of VIP experience. Now, we always hire a car, as that independence is really important to us, plus we like to venture out and about off site a lot and to be honest I like driving over there in what is usually a lovely motor. So the thought of paying extra for that sort of thing is not something we’d ever do, but it’s another extra earner that doesn’t really feel right to me. Is anyone thinking of using that?

From what I’ve read one thing that might be worth using the service for is that they intend to go through some backstage areas to speed up journeys. That might be interesting to see, but I doubt it will be taking a route through anywhere too interesting or sensitive. For a family of four, I’d venture that for $60 a day you could Uber your way around the parks, could you not? Anyway, I suppose if some people do use this new thing it will lessen the load on the normal service which may be helpful.

Anyway, time to go and walk several animals and then think about what is for tea. Louise has been taking it easy at work all weekend but she’ll expect to be fed when she gets in.

Till the next time……

Meet Bean!

With the passing of bonfire night, Christmas is now in full swing. This of course means that somewhere in a large warehouse on a cold and windswept industrial estate, probably just outside Northampton, thousands of copies of Mary Berry’s fitness DVD are already being shrink wrapped ready for January the 2nd.

This is the true circle of life, moving from one reason to shop to another. We live these days just to give advertising execs a reason to exist it seems. Perhaps it’s the absence of Florida sun from this year but I’m feeling a bit jaded with it all to be honest.

These feelings of being out of step with humanity weren’t helped by the events in the US this week. I never do politics here as firstly I don’t know enough about that stuff to even think about blogging about it and of course anything like that inevitably ends up with people falling out. I will make a minor exception to my no politics rule to suggest that Trump’s election, is, in my view, a huge step in the wrong direction for a country I have a lot of love for. As I tweeted, blurry eyed on Wednesday morning…

This is like when your daughter chooses an idiot for a boyfriend. You just have to sit tight until she sees the light.

I speak from a position of experience.

It’s worrying that so many people feel that this man is required. If the political landscape of the world moves any further to the right we all may fall off the edge.

That lack of a break this summer is catching up with us all now I think and I know I really need my lengthy holiday from work over the Christmas period to recharge my batteries. Not having spent my holiday allowance in the US this year (did I mention we didn’t have a holiday this summer?) I had a load of days left, so I finish work on the 16th of December and don’t go back until after New Year. Even with that booked I had a load of days I still hadn’t used so I have gone part-time between now and then by booking off every Friday. Crazy right? It’ll be like working in the Public Sector (winking smiley face). Even with those booked I’m carrying five days over into next year. Bloody hell it’s no wonder I’m jaded, I’ve been working all year!

Wow, I can feel the lack of energy and moaning tone of this post oozing back at me through the keyboard. To balance this, let me share something a little more joyous with you. We have a new addition to the family here in Williams World. As we only have the 78 animals in our house the sensible thing to do of course would be to get another one. Bean has been with us now for quite some time, as we got her in the late summer. Her arrival shall we say was a little bit of surprise to me, but it does seem she is here to stay so say hello…


She is actually quite a big bigger now as she is five months old but that photo shows her cuteness when she arrived. Oli has been pretty good in accepting this massive disruption to his routine, displaying patience and tolerance beyond the call of duty with only the odd telling off. The horrors and hard labour of house training are starting to pay off and she is largely well-behaved in that respect now.

The house is a constant bomb site, with the floors strewn with toys and stuff she shouldn’t be chewing, and it’s been impossible to watch any form of television since she arrived due to the nightly noisy games her and Oli play, which mainly involve them chasing each other and barking a lot, but she’s settling in.

I suppose there are worst things in the world with strangely coloured hair.


Till the next time…..

A Capital Weekend

This is a first. I’m on the train back from London blogging from my phone. The typos will be numerous….

We’ve just had a lovely and at times very emotional weekend in the capital celebrating Emily’s recent 21st. We decided to take her to watch Les Miserables in the West End. It’s a show she has been listening to for as long as she can remember. She used to pretend to be Cosette and do the Castle in the Cloud number in our front room at a very young age.

When they made the film version it became an obsession and she watched it more times than I can count.

So our journey began yesterday with the 9.23 out of Manchester and quite possibly the worst breakfast from one of those food court thingies at Piccadilly. I had forgotten I’d upgraded us to first class on the way down so that expense and experience were not necessary after all. We made use of the free coffee at least as we sped South.

We Ubered to the Holiday Inn in Mayfair for less than the tube would have cost us and we were able to check in early and dump our stuff in the room.

We had a wander across to Buckingham Palace and as you do we bought our 21 year old daughter a stuffed corgi from the shop over the road.

We then wandered aimlessly for a bit through the parks nearby and ended up in Trafalgar Square. After a bit of a sit down we wandered into the National Gallery for some culture. That lasted about ten minutes before Louise’s face told me we’d had enough of that.

We walked back to the hotel enjoying the history and architecture (hark at me, ten minutes in a gallery and I’m John Humphreys) whilst Louise moaned about her aching feet. Those dolly shoes were no match for mine and Emily’s trainers!!

Showers baths and resting happened before another Uber down to Shaftesbury Avenue. With the myriad of top class dining options at her disposal Emily had chosen to eat at the Rainforest Cafe.

We were seated quickly after I had used all my powers of persuasion to have the bartender serve Emily some alcohol. Nachos to share as an appetiser before the mains arrived.

We were stuffed and all of my dessert intentions were cast aside as my belt rebelled against my stomach.

With a few beers, wines and multiple cocktails it was £130ish. Pricey but good fun and it was for a special occasion.

We then made our way down to the theatre.

At this point Emily was shaking with excitement. After ordering our interval drinks we made our way to Row C. Well done to whoever secured those gems!!

Emily started crying somewhere in the opening number and was a gibbering wreck for most of the show until the end. The emotional peaks were the end of the first act which is a proper goosebumps and lump in the throat thing and of course the finale which if it doesn’t get you right in the feels you need to seek medical help. The theatre is surprisingly small as was the cast but the noise they generate is incredible. 

Wonderful music, singing and staging led to us being on our feet cheering as they took their bows. We were so close that a few of the cast could see Emily in bits, make up down her face as they took the deserved standing ovation!

We strolled back to the hotel with the tears still flowing and as we had a nightcap in the hotel bar she still could not gather herself. Rest assured she loved it….a lot.

Sunday morning was a lazy one with brunch in a nearby eatery with terrible service and decent food followed by a look around the shops before getting on the train.

It’s been a dear do of course but an experience Emily will never forget and therefore of course money well spent.

I’m now going back to concentrating on not throwing up as I’m travelling backwards at high speed with blurry countryside to my right. Ugh.

Till the next time….

Sent from my iPhone.

Top 8 Youtube Videos

Emily has spent hours and hours on YouTube so you don’t have to!!


Happy Saturday!

Hope you’re all having a good weekend so far.

Since posting my last Top 10 Youtube videos post I have come across quite a few new videos so enjoyy!!

8 Dapper Day 2014 — Into the Magic Project Adventure!

I love this!! I’ve always always always wanted to go to Dapper Day, look how cute everyone looks!! The video for this is here.

7 Dubstep Disney 2 – Thru My Eyes.

Sawyer Hartman is probably one of my favourite youtubers and he’s super talented. I’m jealous of everyone who can just get up in the morning and be like ‘Oh hey lets go to Disney’ Jealous of you all. This video is a pretty similar style to number 10. I love videos like this so much. The video is here.

6 Spell Block Tango 

This is so perfect! I love this so much, Todrick hall is…

View original post 474 more words

No post today.

We’ve had some awful news today, and it doesn’t feel right for me to spout the usual self-indulgent nonsense in light of someone passing away. So there won’t be a post from me here today.

We heard this morning that Louise’s brother-in-law has passed. Louise lost her sister to breast cancer many years ago, and so as you can imagine this is very upsetting as he was no age at all.

Instead of me prattling on, I will instead point you at Emily’s blog from yesterday, which is her best yet, and probably better than anything else I could produce at the moment.

Go read Emily’s blog by clicking this picture.

Hopefully normal service will be resumed next week.

Till the next time.

Oreo Cheesecake induced pain.

So the week just gone was rife with the pain and misery of the return to work.  It has been many years since I had to endure going back so early after New Year so the pain felt was acute.

My early return was required mainly as I had a new chap starting work and felt it slightly unfair to allow him to spend three days sat wondering where the toilets were.  Those three days felt longer than most full weeks, but I suppose that was always going to be the case.

The one positive from such a situation is that this initial pain is done and dusted and I can now sit and watch those endure it tomorrow as the late starters join me to sit still on the motorway tomorrow morning.

To make the week simply fly by, we have been enthralled and entertained by photos sent back home from those Williams’ currently enjoying WDW.

George and Piglet

Nephew George with Piglet

With the size of the party travelling they are getting around on some sort of double decker bus.

Fun Bus

The fun bus

You can only imagine how images like this have been helping the diet

Oreo Chessecake

Oreo Cheesecake

As is tradition on any Williams journey to Florida, a birthday is to be celebrated.  This time it was my Dad who did it in his usual understated style.  Apparently he wore the hat all day.

Dad Birthday

Where did you get that hat?

They head home tomorrow (Monday), and if I were that way inclined to take solace from the pain of others, my own recently endured return to work woes will be a gnat on the arse of an elephant compared to that about to be endured by the returning tribe from Orlando.  Apart from my Mum & Dad of course who will just go back to being retired and not going to work in a different country.

So if you have been one of those lazing at home for those wonderful extra few days since New Year, this is probably one of the worst Sunday nights of the year.  I look upon you with a mix of pity, sympathy and gloaty supremacy.  Don’t worry, as bad as you think it is going to be will be nothing compared to how it actually will turn out. I speak from recent experience.

Oh and after only a few hours at work, Louise and I had one of those text conversations that more often than not end up on a flights web site with a smoking credit card.  Fear not, we remained strong, and no bookings were made.  We were caught up in the madness for a few short moments but the sobering cost of flights and the lack of a method of payment that might be accepted swiftly brought us down to earth again……with an enormous and bone shattering bump.  It hurt.

So be warned, the pain of the return to work (especially if family members are sending you hourly updates of WDW activities) can make you do crazy things.  Let’s be careful out there!

Till the next time….