The Open Championship

This year’s Open Championship was an absolute cracker. Darren Clarke’s victory was one of the most popular ever. It made excellent listening on the radio because it was so close most of the way through (Clarke established a substantial lead in the end). For those of us who listened to the actioon on the radio Clarke’s victory had the extra spice of coming less than 24 hours after he was dismissed as a contender by an American pundit (name withheld to protect the guilty).

The Rudham Festival

This weekend was the Rudham festival. Lots and lots of people turned out to do various things. The playing field was the centre of activities, but there was also some stuff in St Peters Church, West Rudham, incluidng a History Society stall featuring photographs which I had done some work on, and various other interesting documents. This stall was massively successful. I bought a pair of ex-army binoculars from a stall run by Break for £5. There was a highly entertaining demonstration of the art of sheep shearing. Another quirky event was Snail Racing.

Marxism 2011

Have just returned from Marxism 2011, a huge left-wing festival in London. Over 4,500 people turned up this year, inspired by events all round the world. The atmosphere was electric. I have made contact with the Norwich SWP which will means I shall be able to attend future events in Norwich. The event was given a further shot in the arm by the strike action which took place just before it started. A running theme through the event was calls for a general strike (“name the day”). Attending and enjoying this event was another little landmark in my personal journey of recovery from the problems I had in 2005.


A great victory for England yesterday in the ODI. Wimbledon turning into a tournament of shocks, with both Williams sisters and Federer all shown the exit door in the space of three days.

Away from sport some big news: I will be moving to Genesis Homes (nee St Matthew Housing) in the near future. I spent a couple of hours today going through a risk assessment interview with two of their professionals and Dave from Julian Housing (standing in for my regular caseworker Duncan). They have a room in each of their two Kings Lynn houses so I await with interest finding out which house I will be in.

Between tomorrow and Tuesday inclusive I will be in London for Marxism 2011, a big political festival.


The thrid and final test match of the series between England and Sri Lanka has ended in a draw. Perhaps the most significant occurrence of the match was the return to form of Kevin Pietersen who contributed a magnificent 85 to England’s 377-8D. The horrible weather that has blighted this series was particularly unfortunate here as the groundstaff had produced a proper cricket pitch on which all types of player were in the game, as opposed to the shirtfronts we see far too often. Today we witnessed Kumar Sangakkara’s 1st test hundred in England, wilile Thilan Samaraweera was 13 short when the rain came.


On Thursday I had a day out in Southwold (lunch at the Red Lion, home of Adnams). Adnam is a family name. Family names ending in -nam appear to be a Suffolk peculiarity. In the eighteenth century there was a Suffolk family called Bradnam, one member of whom was incorrectly registered at birth with the n and the m transposed, and it so happened that it was the son of this individual, still using the -man ending who emigrated to Australia, where his one of his grandsons attained considerable fame. As I write this England are making a fine effort to win the series against Sri Lanka 2-0 istead of 1-0. Andrew Strauss made an excellent declaration yesterday to give England a chance of finishing it in spite of the poor weather. The sea views at Southwold are impressive even on when the weather is ordinary, as it was. I append some photographs:
The Red Lion, SouthwoldAnother sea view at Southwold
Sea view at Southwold

wood and other stuff.

On Sunday I collected a substantial quantity of kindling, having been unable to purchase Asparagus I put the bag I had with me to alternative use, and filled it without ever leaving my path! Today we had a delivery of wood which means we now have ridiculously large quantities, but at least we will not need deliveries in midwinter when everyone is thinking about such things

A rose which a couple of months ago was showing no signs of life is now in full flower, having had no assistance other than being watered by me – a truly resilient plant. The stuff growing abundantly around the outside of the pot is wild Marjoram, which I use in some of my cooking.

Rose Miracle

A baby jay was in our driveway look very forlorn this morning, but it has gone again, hpefully safely back to the nest.

baby jay
baby jay


England have made a magnificent recovery from a poor start to the second test match. Having at one stage been 22-3 they reached 486, with Cook, Morgan, Prior and Broad all making major contributions.

Have just had a marvellous barbecue (our first this year). Our local butcher supplies the best burgers you could ever hope to eat, while for accompaniment we had locally grown rocket and even more locally grown lettuce.


Computer Purgatory

This is the first post I am writing on my new computer, and in it I will tell the story of how an apparently straightforward process took over three weeks to be finally sorted.

When I decided to launch this blog, I also decided it was time to replace the world’s slowest laptop (which will be going out to Greece to enable schoolchildren there to have access to computers), since it was no longer able to connect to the internet regularly. I naively imagined buying the new machine, connecting it up and then launching the blog from it. Part one, finding an appropriate machine went extremely smoothly, and for an extra £30 it was supposedly set up ready to go. After getting the machine home and switching it on the problems started. It proved impossible to connect to the internet, so we went back to the shop and they apparently sorted the problem. Take two failed as well, so next up was a call to Talk Talk. They said we needed a new router, which would have locked as into a further 18 month contract, so we decided to switch to BT as we had had problems with Talk Talk. This entailed extracting a MAC code from Talk Talk and passing it to BT. Once we knew when the BT router would arrive we arranged for an expert we had used before to come out to do all the various things that needed doing. So approximately three weeks later than intended I finally have a computer with which I can access the internet instead of having to hop on to other people’s computers.


England’s Triumph

Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. Not four hours ago I dismissed the test match at Cardiff as a rain-ruined draw. I should have remembered the astounding finale of two years ago when the straight bats of Anderson and Panesar (!) saved England, and also recalled that this wonderful game has a habit of flinging egg in the faces of those who make dogmatic comments. A combination of wonderful English bowling and the inexperienced Sri Lankan batting beign overtaken by panic has created out of nothing a victory by an innings and 14 runs, England’s fourth innings win in their last five matches. Swann and Tremlett each picked up four wickets and Broad two. Trott deservedly got the man of the match award for his double century which left this match with only the two possible results. Some have commented on his inability or unwillingness to change tempo, but as Strauss pointed out during the post-match interviews, the man is averaging nearly 70 per innings and his side are winning most of thgeir matches. A further response to one very well known Yorkshireman who was among those voicing this critiicism of Trott is: “Mr Pot, meet Mr Kettle”. Sri Lanka will have a hard time bouncing back from this, especially with play getting underway at Lord’s on Friday. For England the only question is who will replace Anderson. England’s declaration immediately after Bell had completed his century seemed at the time a bold but futile gesture, but bravery was its own reward.