Wednesday, 28 December 2016

...some of this and some of that

2016

This may well be my last blog,
I've only written 16 this year, including this one. 
I've not really felt the urge or inclination to sit at the keyboard like I used to.
I have one fan though, who signs in everyday, according to my live traffic feed, from Wilmington, Delaware in the US, my guess is it's Google. Having said that, I'm registered as signing on from Newcastle upon Tyne, so gone are the days when I could almost pinpoint the viewer from Maidenhead!

What a year it's been though for the man with the scythe!
Although I suppose, the longer one is on this Earth, the more names one comes across, so for somebody of my age(68 next March) that's anybody who was famous, or known to me from the 1950's onwards.


It does of course relate to family, friends and acquaintances, and I've lost a few of those this year, only this last two months three funerals,my cousin Joyce, my uncle Reg, both of whom have been mentioned in the past, and old Bern around the corner.
Rest in Peace

So, on to other things.
 I've fished a good few times, but nothing to write home about fish wise, I've even taken my notebook for those quiet moments, and it's stayed in the bag. The chub are calling though.

Our house didn't sell!
There were not many viewings, we can count them on two hands, not certain of the reason, although living in the sticks with no facilities, apart from the pub and the village hall probably doesn't give great appeal.

We've decided to stay on now though, having discussed again the reasons we decided a move and they are not insurmountable problems. 
We'll probably take the equity out of the house, update and rejig here and there, and have more long haul holidays....who knows how long we have left? 

We're both in agreement that we don't want to leave inheritances!


Talking of holidays, this year saw us floating across to, and up the Amazon, We have learnt from this, 42 days at sea probably isn't the best way to spend our hard earned gains, and that with 1200 folk on board a boat, no self respecting jaguar, or come to that bird, is going to be posing for a photograph when the hoards off load!
Which was really what we wanted from that cruise.

As a result of being too far from the wildlife, I've upgraded my lens on the Nikon D3200 to a 55-300mm, so may well be hunting out the bird life a bit more.
First test on our Mr & Mrs sparra!


The Amazon trip took care of most of January and half of February. We visited Plocton in March, picking up our resident Scot's (Stirling) friends on the way up. A beautiful spot and pub, to stay in and wander the hills.
In May we had a few days in London by the river, seeing the sites, eating good food, and generally soaking up the big smoke. Pauline having not been in the "Big Smoke" for almost 30 years was somewhat overwhelmed by the changes
July found us wandering the Lake District for 10 days.
Our trip to Portugal failed as reported, and was replaced somewhat by pub 3 day stopovers, in Poole, Leyburn and Thorpe Market.
We've been at home since November, but 2017 so far, will take us to Torremolinos for some long winter warming,  a long weekend in a foodie pub near Newbury, around my birthday in late March, and a luxury long weekend in Dubrovnik at the end of April.

The International Drinking Society has lived on, as have the six remaining participants, with 5 trips throughout the year to London pub venues of good repute.
My turn to find a new venue in March.

So, as I've mentioned, this may be the last blog entry, then again it may not be. It will depend how the mood, and my delve into photography takes me.
A great 2017 to look forward to, especially the signing off of our EU membership. 
The referendum was the first vote in my life, and I always vote, that I felt would really make a difference,we shall see!
Thanks to my readers, have a great 2017, with good health and tight lines for my fellow anglers.


Friday, 11 November 2016

It's been a while

Fishing and thoughts
I've been down the Trent a few times since my last blog and I''d like to say it has been a productive time, but it hasn't been worth putting pen to paper.
Having said that, the last time out, I took a note book with me I've, never done it before, but thought I'd see if I was getting inspiration to write whilst awaiting that three foot twitch.
So, this is how it went, and as written.

The idea is that if I get any inspiration or thoughts whilst I fish two rods into the middle Trent perhaps I should jot them down.

I can't say that I normally have inspirational thoughts, so having sat here for an hour without movement from my rods, accompanied only by the occasional passing boat, an annoyed wren, and a vole at my feet having a fleeting dash out of cover towards my spilled hempseed, I've taken up my pen.
A skein of geese pass before me in their usual V shaped formation, for identification purposes they too far away for my eyesight, and my lens.
Probably pink footed


Over my shoulder is the mewing of a buzzard, generally though it's all quiet.
There are three other cars along the stretch, not near enough to chat to. The wren still wants to though, and there's a kingfisher close by betrayed by her call but, not by a fly by.
It's 2pm, very little movement from the fish, but that is not unusual on this stretch, as surface movement usually starts as the sun goes down.
A chap named David A from Oakham has turned up at this time, and we chat for some while before he settles down to tackle up in the swim just upstream from me. 
He fishes solely for barbel and uses an apple corer chunk of spam as his main bait, he feels it picks out the bigger fish.

It's now 4pm, just a couple of knocks, if I was negative I would have put down to leaf debris!
A good size flock of fieldfare pass overhead chattering individually to each other.
David pops over again, he's bite-less too, but he's just had a four horse accumulator come in, and goes on to tell me a few tales about what is his favourite and well studied hobby of horse racing, and betting.
I'm getting desperate now, only two hours to go to dusk at around 6.30, other anglers have passed by on their way home, all reporting a bad day with no bites.
So, I've poured myself a cup of coffee, and have a pee in
the hope, as so often happens, a fish is induced to bite....well.... that failed!
David pops along for a further chat (he's obviously getting bored). This time he tells me of his business woes, a total loss of his premises due to a fire in his chimney's last May. 
It then occurs to me just who he is, so we continue chatting about the insurance claim, and how it affected his staff.

I'll not go into the detail of our chat here, as it is still an ongoing matter.

Once again I'm on my own it's 5.30pm, I continue in hope.
At last, a few nudges on my quarter tin of garlic spam, time to put the other rod away.
The nudges continue and finish with a big tug stripping line from my baitrunner...and that was it. 
Big spam gone!
I think the eels come out at night, as I've experienced this before. Maybe I'll have a go for them sometime. It's reported four pounders have been taken accidentally .
The session ends with just one last cast, as always, in
the hope of that three foot twitch.

I'll be taking my notebook with me again


Portugal

I mentioned last time that my 10 day trip was  cancelled.
It's subject to an insurance claim, but basically our flight out of Humberside to Amsterdam was delayed four hours due to a  gauge failure. 
A four hour delay would find us arriving in Amsterdam just as our fight to Oporto was leaving.
So we removed our luggage from the hold, and made our disappointed way home after checking if a later flight was available to Oporto. 
There wasn't.
As it happened the four hour delay eventually turned into a cancellation,so we are entitled to compensation of around £200 each plus the tickets cost to Amsterdam. Leaving us with an insurance claim for the air tickets to Oporto and back home, plus the lost deposit for the holiday.
So far the insurers have denied any liability, but the fight will go on.

Short breaks

We've had two since I last blogged.
Our first to our favourite inn in Norfolk, the Gunton Arms at Thorpe Market, a three night stay that lived up to all expectations in this deer park location. 
If anybody is interested, I last reported on this inn here. Gunton


Our next trip, just last week was to Poole in Dorset, the weather was at it's best, a final fling,18-20c after the morning mists.
We stayed in The Antelope Inn which was alright, and had a few pub crawls along to quay over three days.
A trip out to Brownsea Island was probably the highlight. 
A very natural place almost untouched by the National Trust.
We sighted our first non captive red squirrel which started off a three hour walk around the island. 


A magical place

Life on a big tree stump






Until the next time.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Still here again!!

Portugal

Four hour flight delay at Humberside totally cocks up holiday,so still at home.
I will give the full story when I get my kick off claim response from KLM.


In the mean time.....

Avon Roach Project

Update  

http://avonroachproject.blogspot.co.uk/


Thursday, 29 September 2016

Still here, but not for long

As are the swallows.
Hoards of gulls following the plough's today, there must be a thousand of them wheeling their way back to the roost over this part of the Lincolnshire Wolds.
I've not been fishing since my last blog, it's tidy up time in the garden as we're off to soon.

Another holiday
We're heading to the North of Portugal close to the town of Ponte-da-Barca and into the National Park of Peneda-Geres.
Our last visit to the North must have been getting on for 35 years ago, we were probably there for our wedding anniversary as we will be this time for the 43rd year!
Our stay last time was in the coastal town of Viana do Costelo, it has many fond memories for us, we hope the in between years haven't changed the location too much, although there is now a motorway off the coastal route that didn't exist before, so we shall see.
I'm taking some of my fishing gear with me as we are on the banks of the River Lima. I shall probably be fishing barbel style, much the same as the Trent, and see how it goes.
My guess is that the internet, if any, will not be that brilliant,so I may well keep a log and report on our return.
I already have a "Travel Experiences" blog page set up from our Brazil trip, so I'll add it to that when possible.

House Sale
It's now a year since we've put the house on the market. We have got through two High Street agencies, the latest since April.
What we can't make out is the lack of viewings, although it does seem to me that High Street estate agents are a thing of the past, folk now check out the likes of Rightmove, and no longer look in the agents window.
So we've challenged the agent to produce a new marketing strategy for our return from Portugal.
My guess is that we will take the house off the market, and start again with a different outlook on our life here on the Wolds, or perhaps Purple Bricks!

Fishing
On my return I shall be heading for the Trent and the Upper Witham, too see how I fair through the Autumn for barbel, chub and perhaps roach.
I've also gained a local contact for some sea fishing on a boat out of Grimsby, and have a couple of the villagers who are interested in joining me. So again, we shall see.

That's all for now, I'll be back