Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Pass go

I bought a breadmaker today. It cost £10 more than the one I saw in a supermarket before Christmas, but that's a snip.  You see, a month or so ago I was without change when I used a local car park and nipped off to break a note so as to come back and pay the charge immediately, as you do. Needing a USB cable anyway, I went first to Woolies, which was mobbed on day one of their clearance and so I tried for the first time ever the electrical specialist, Pass & Son, established in 1929.  

Back at the car park some ten minutes later and ticket in hand, I found a fixed penalty notice attached to my windscreen...  Contesting the fine from a car park at such a distance from the town centre and on such an unusally busy day, I was struck that this constitutes far less a penalty on me than on the independent high street retailer. Since the cable was for a printer bought at a supermarket, which gave no indication that I could not connect without it, my conversion was simple.

Today Pass confirm with absolute certainty that the breadmaker I am contemplating is one of those featured amongst last Sunday's papers and magazines as one which also makes jam - thus, no need to for costly pans or sugar thermometers.  I think that's worth ten quid, don't you?

Posted @ 12:44:49 on 06 January 2009

Sunday, 4 January 2009

I've just twigged...

It's funny how the New Year always prompts us to take exercise - I've walked myself into two bouts of it today.  Between that and buying the papers, today is most unlike a usual Sunday.  On my second walk I was astonished to find so many twigs on the ground.  Since Mum always sent us to collect kindling as kids, it seemed only natural to pick them up.  In the crisp frost, they cracked easily in my hands - short little tinder sticks in an instant.  The kindling ignites the self-sufficiency of my youth.  I am thinking about making all my gifts this year, recalling recipes as I survey the hedgerows.  

The twigs keep my attention though - there are just so many of them, lying there rotting.  Shop bought kindling costs £2.20 a bag and half a litre of my petrol, never mind what anyone else clocks up in transport miles.  I'm already planning to use a briquette maker next Summer to recycle paper into logs for my fire.  Interestingly, the Sundays report a downturn in waste paper values, so that's another credit free New Year's resolution sorted. Winter walks for kindling, summer briqette maker for logs.  Hopefully, I'll burn off some energy around my waist line to create fuel that will heat my home - toasty!

Posted @ 12:24:08 on 04 January 2009

Thursday, 1 January 2009

Hog moan eh!

The silence is uncanny.  Christmas used to be like this.  Sundays weren't far behind - everywhere closed, no choice but to get along with people at home.  My uncle had a grocer's shop in Gwaun Cae Gurwen - always closed early on Saturdays, which I found odd because Wednesday was early closing where we lived.  No such thing now, of course, but what does it cost to stay open all the time?  The trickle of custom at the supermarket last Monday meant staff were so bored they were telling their customers as much.  Every little helps ;-)

Stayed in last night - too many pubs closed or too far away.  My son thinks pubs are outdated - he offers cinema and shopping as alternatives, but these are guaranteed to grind conversation to a halt.  My local, three miles away as luck would have it, offers books and games, biscuits and cheese on a Friday night.  Here bell-ringers meet to circle the round table where regulars play cards and sup from a personal jar from behind the bar.  The neighbour, a local councillor no less, is so public spirited that he spurns any attempt at music even to see in the New Year.  So, I resolve to carol sing especially for him next Yuletide and see how the old Scrooge likes a traditional credit free trick or treat!

Posted @ 12:01:12 on 01 January 2009