Landlubbers again – interim report

We were lucky to get our ferry home!  Whilst Nick was an hour out on this timings because he had not altered his watch, I have to deal with the fact that, where the 24 hour clock is concerned, when I see 17.30hr on a ticket or timetable, something in my head says half past 7!   We scrambled for the off, rescued by Daniel the Bon Voisin who said he would shut everything down for us.

Back in Blighty and the Lights have a mountain of mail to go through, 90% of which is catalogues, magazines, journals.   There is just one irritating matter to deal with the following morning – sales material, accidentally signed up for, which is being billed.  Twenty years ago one would have had an argument – these days customer services personnel are trained to know who is right, and only too happy to initiate refunds.

An unseasonal dry spell has nearly wrecked my contained Primula which bear the full brunt of a south-facing house.  But there are a few friends to find in the garden and photograph, and thanks to the temporary erection of our wire fence to enclose the flower beds and lawn area, new shoots have not been nibbled by the deer.

On Friday, in desperation I make an emergency dental appointment with a locum, my own surgery having closed for a fortnight.  He pokes around, takes an X-Ray, squirts my teeth with ethyl chloride which makes me jump (it is cooooold) and immediately identifies sensitive areas which may account for my tooth-ache, then taps a recently filled tooth which makes me jump again and says I may be brewing an abscess.  With the comfort blanket of a prescription for antibiotic should things get worse over the weekend I have to go away and wait and see.  If necessary I will have to go in again on Monday………………… which time the suspect tooth has gone quiet and I think I can wait until my pre-existing dental appointment due in a week’s time.

Some time on Saturday I discovered Jessica Winder’s Blog.  Our paths crossed over 10 years ago when we met at an Archaeological Conference.  Jessica researched oysters in archaeology for her PhD and produced some insightful results which continue to inform the work I do on oysters, most recently Restormel Castle.  Jessica posts notes and photos on her blog about the nature on her Dorset doorstep………….. and other beautiful stretches of coast such as the Gower.

Looking through her pages it highlights one of my great joys in walking by the sea.  It is a marine ‘ terrain’ which is forever changing.  When the cycle of tides is on falling springs you can find stranded driftlines around a bay, like so many strings of beads on a necklace.   On any day you go to look you are likely to find a something new that the sea has cast up to delight the eye or excite the curiosity.  You will find answers on Jessica’s blog, linked in here.

The weekend sees an excursion to the Dorset coast to visit my mother.  Charlotte and Teddy are coming too, we are going to have lunch with sisters/cousins/nieces/nephews.  It is a gorgeous spring day, warm enough for octogenarian ladies to sit serenely in the garden and look on whilst all about them the little folk scurry and climb and negotiate for turns on various mobile toys.  I have presented my mother with print-outs of her genealogy, so kindly compiled by sister-in-law Maddy who loves this kind of thing.  With the aid of a box file and folder of certificates and notes accumulated by mother with a great aunt 20 years ago, Maddy has used the internet to trace Mum’s roots on both sides back to the late 1700s.  My mother never knew her maternal family because her mother died 3 months after Mum was born and contact was not maintained.  Now she has it in black and white, she is evidently thrilled that the jigsaw has been completed.  Thank you Maddy.


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