musings while allatsea

Musings of a curious individual

Tag: Christmas

Snow? Again?

To think we almost had a white Christmas this year, and it was fun to experience it at the time even though it was not Christmas. Theoretically we were all done and dusted with snow for 2017, however, the weather had more in store for us. Yesterday (Boxing day) started out as a moderately pleasant day, with the sun making a token appearance and rain shoving it out of the way towards the afternoon. At this point the Carrant Brook has been flowing quite strongly but not enough to flood the surrounding fields.

This fine morning when I opened the curtains I was in for a rude surprise (although I really had to wait for it to get lighter), outside the field was white and wet,

the Brook was much higher and there was snow on the cars and frozen patches all over the place.

This should have happened on Monday! not today when I am at work!  I did not feel too confident with heading out there on my bike, although there were tire marks in the snow (albeit wobbly ones) so I decided to hoof it instead, and seeing as I was on the hoof I would take some pics (I can’t help it, it is just something I do!). 

So, these images are what is left after last nights surprise snow. Hopefully it won’t freeze and create an ice rink across my route to work, and hopefully the Carrant Brook will also drop its level, although its level is partly determined by what comes from upstream and the height of the Avon where it joins it. I hold thumbs. 

However….

This will be my last set of images for 2017, and this weekend I will do my infamous “retrospective” for the year gone by. I will also create the new 2018 index page and hopefully all will be well in the land of Gloucestershire. 

© DRW 2017-2018, created 27/12/2017

Updated: 04/03/2018 — 08:29

Christmas Greetings 2017

And once again Christmas has snuck up, wacked us on the head, emptied our wallet and left us all asking “where did the year go to?” Personally I have no idea, I suspect the year it was faulty and should have been returned for a refund as an out of box failure! 

But, all I can really do at this point and time is wish everybody a Happy Christmas and to make the most of this special day. May love light and laughter be with you as you celebrate over this period. Do not drink and drive, and do not become a statistic. 

And, special thanks to those who man the fire stations, emergency services, lifeboats, police stations, hospitals, and who may find themselves in the military. Thank you for giving up yours for us.  

As Muffin would say “Is it over with? I am so tired I only slept 27 hours last night”

© DRW 2017-2018. 

Updated: 24/12/2017 — 18:25

The Musings Advent Calender 2017

I started this in 2015, so this is really the 3rd year in a row I have done it. Hopefully some of the pics will not have been seen before. The snow that we had on the 10th really left me many opportunities to get stunning images, and these will probably dominate the calender for a few days.

24 December

23 December

22 December

Fighter from Battlestar Galactia

21 December

A “hooty bird”

20 December

A £ for a lb

19 December

18 December

Eclectica

17 December

Cast iron water tower in Yeoville, Johannesburg. One of all time favourite structures

16 December

Voortrekker Monument, Pretoria

15 December

Part of a model train layout

14 December 

Seen locally, a Shetland Pony

13 December

12 December

11 December

10 December 

Yep, we had snow. Image opens in the snowy blogpost

09 December

I headed to our local cemetery to see whether it was affected by the frost, and it was only really affected where there were no overhanging trees.

Tewkesbury Abbey

Cemetery Chapel

 

On 8 December we had snow in Tewkesbury although I missed seeing most of it as I was at work, and the pics from my camera do not show very much. However the temperatures are low and it is predicted that we will have snow/sleet on the 10th. The pics I took for 8 and 9 December will be weather related as a result.

Sunrise, the field is really covered in frost.

 

07 December

Fountain in Cheltenham

6 December

Roof in Birminham

5 December

Spotted in a church in Weymouth.

4 December

Shop window in Poole

3 December

Seen in Hythe near the Hovercraft Monument

2 December

Spotted in East Cowes, Isle of Wight in 2013. Explanation on the right

1 December

Donkeys at the seaside in Weymouth

 

© DRW 2017-2018. Created between 01 and 24 December 2017. 

Updated: 24/12/2017 — 18:25

The Musings Advent Calender 1-24 December

I started this in 2015, and have decided I will do the same for this year, although was  6 days behind when I started. 

and finally….. 

24 December

 

23 December

22 December 

21 December

I have no idea.

20 December

19 December

John Betjeman (St Pancras Station)

18 December

Greenwhich (1500×386)

17 December

Queen Alexandra Memorial (St James Palace London). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queen_Alexandra_Memorial

16 December

15 December

“‘ullo ‘ullo ‘ullo, bear with me for awhile” (Harrods in London)

14 December 

Homage to Leonardo

13 December 

12 December 

Battersea Power Station

11 December

10 December

9 December

8 December

 

7 December

HMS Illustrious

6 December

5 December

Gift Horse, by Hans Haacke, is a “contemporary comment on history, power and money”. (Trafalgar Square 2016)

4 December

3 December

2 December

1 December

 

© DRW 2016-2018

Updated: 01/01/2018 — 16:46

Let there be light

A gazillion years ago; when I was a wee lad, Christmas had a certain appeal because not only was it about goodies but because it was also about spirit. Part of the ritual would have been a trip into Johannesburg city to “look at the lights”. Way back then Johannesburg went over the top with decorating the town and transforming a mad place into something magical for kids such as myself. The OK Bazaars was famous for the display that they erected, it drew vast hordes of people and naturally must have cost a small fortune. But the irony was that after hours trading was not allowed so they could not tap into that captive audience. 

Then they scaled it down and stopped it altogether. 

This year I had a late afternoon appointment in town and because it gets dark really quickly now I would be in town when it was dark and I would be able to see the Christmas lights in Tewkesbury.

night-061

night-062

In the image below you can see the War Memorial, and barely 2 weeks ago we were standing at the memorial Remembering the Fallen. 

night-065

The lights were not very impressive because there was really a lack of colour in them. But! it was better than nothing. 

© DRW 2016-2018. Created 24/11/2016

Updated: 01/01/2018 — 16:31

Looking back on 2015

2015 was a very unsettled year, I moved house 4 times, lived in 3 cities and found full time work once again. It was also a year of heritage rail, graveyards, bridges and new discoveries. These are some of the highlights.

January.
Two highlights stick out in January. The first was my visit to West Norwood Cemetery in London.

And of course my visit to Brooklands Museum in Weybridge with its collection of heritage aircraft, cars and buses.

February.

The highlight of that month was the snow that fell on two separate days and I was finally able to photograph a cemetery in the snow

March.
In March I moved up to Staffordshire and a whole new world opened up as a result. There were a lot of highlights in that month, and the one that stuck out the most was the visit we made to the aircraft collection at RAF Cosford.

 

I was also fortunate enough to see Lichfield Cathedral as well as travel on a heritage train run by Chasewater Railway.

April.

Early that month we visited the National Tramway Museum at Crich which was really amazing.

I was also able to walk around the National Memorial Arboretum which was quite an experience.

May.

My birthday month, I visited Ryecroft Cemetery in Walsall in that month and ended up making two visits to find the many war graves in it.  It was a very interesting place.

June

In June I moved down to Tewkesbury to start a new job. I was also able to take in the very beautiful Tewkesbury Abbey

July.
I spent a considerable amount of time messing around in Cheltenham, especially in Prestbury Cemetery which was a really beautiful place.

August.

During that month I was able to travel with the Gloucester Wawickshire Railway (GWR)

This was the first of two trips that I did with the railway.
Of course one other highlight from that month was the visit that we made to the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol

September.
In September I visited yet another famous bridge, this time it was the Mythe Bridge in Tewkesbury

October.

I returned to Bristol in October and it was the Heritage Day Weekend, and naturally there were ships. 

November

Every November I remember those who paid the price in wars, and last November was no different.

December

In December I moved house again so did not have too much time to do very much, however I did do a retrospective look at Drydocks

And that was my year. And a very interesting one it was too, although at times I did find it very stressful. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. Unfortunately I did not watch the statistics too well this year, but at the time of doing this post  (01/02/2016) things looked like this:

Thank you to all of those who contributed to the 110 374 pageviews. Lets try for 200 000 by this time next year!

© DRW 2015-2018. Images migrated 02/05/2016

Updated: 01/01/2018 — 15:24

Merry Christmas

Yes it is true, tis the season to get jolly.. and all that stuff that goes with it.

And whether you believe in a fat guy in a red suit or in the birth of a child in Bethlehem is irrelevant.

 

What is important that you have a Merry Christmas, and a peaceful and prosperous new year.

 

May love, light and laughter be with you on this day, and may the joy of family and friends help you to forget the cares and troubles along the way.

and, to those who are on duty in the emergency and essential services, in military bases, ships, hospitals, and everywhere else, THANK YOU!!. 
Updated: 01/01/2018 — 15:26

The Musings Advent Calender 1-24 December

This I should have started awhile ago, but it fell by the wayside in my move.  24 random unpublished images from my collection.

24 December

23 December

22 December

21 December

20 December

19 December

18 December

17 December.

16 December

15 December

14 December

13 December

12 December

11 December

10 December

John Le Fleming. (1295-1336). Mayor of Southampton. Sculpture by John Griffith.
1991. Funded by the Southampton City Council.  

9 December

8 December

7 December

6 December

5 December

4 December

3 December

2 December

1 December

Updated: 03/05/2016 — 19:20

Happy New Year

It is now 21H42, and in South Africa it is 23H42, almost 2015. I have had an interesting, if somewhat odd year, and up to a point it was going reasonably well. However that has since changed.

The year saw many highlights and lowlights too, these are a few of them.

January.

I started my year with a bit of shipwatching, the Maiden arrival of Norwegian Getaway in Southampton.

And I made a trip to Bristol to photograph Arnos Vale Cemetery, and managed to squeeze in a visit to the SS Great Britain.  It was a great trip, and on my way to Bristol I passed Bath Spa, and decided to make that a destination for a road trip. 

 
February.
 
My first exploration of that month was to Old Sarum in Salisbury, and it was one of those strange places that leave you thinking. And, there was a lot of thinking that month as we gathered in Southampton to commemorate the memory of those members of the SANLC who perished in the Mendi Disaster 
 
 
March.
 
The 1st of March is also the first anniversary of my arrival in the UK. Time has passed, and I have seen much since I stepped off the plane into the unknown.  I also managed to get to Bath Spa and it was a very pretty city.  
 
April

In this month  I moved into my own little pad in Salisbury. Bliss, no flatmates, no shared facilities, privacy!! YES! But what a lot of hoops I had to jump through to get there. Unfortunately it was a longish walk to work and often I would start out in the morning and be worn out by the time I got there. 

May

My birthday month. And in mid May I took a trip down to South Africa to settle some of my affairs. To be honest I do not really miss the place.

 
June.

I returned to Salisbury in June, and it was interesting to be able to consider the UK as my end destination, and not the place I was leaving from. I also paid my first visit to Brookwood Cemetery and the military cemetery there was huge. The largest congregation of military graves I have ever seen in one place. 

 
July. 

This was quite a busy month, my first trip destination was Portsmouth and Gosport, and a visit to HMS Alliance and the Royal Navy Submarine Museum which was really fascinating. 

 
I also visited Haslar Naval Cemetery and photographed most of the World War II graves there. Unfortunately I was not able to complete the First World War Graves so would have to revisit at a later date.

I  took a trip on Shieldhall down to Ryde, which is the longest trip I had taken on this preserved vessel. I was also keen on doing a trip on her to Poole, but I just did not do it. It was also my last trip on her for the year. On a shipwatching note, I was able to photograph Emerald Princess.  

August
 
On the 4th of August we remembered the start of the horror of the First World War.
 
The biggest highlight of August (and probably the whole year) was definitely the Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red Memorial at the Tower of London.
 

 

It was a very memorable thing to see, and it was only probably a quarter of the way done. The images that I have seen of the end result have really been breathtaking, and I know it was probably the most effective memorial and tribute I have ever seen to those who never came back from the First World War.

I also made a visit to Tower Hamlets Cemetery, which was number 6 of the magnificent seven  Victorian Garden Cemeteries, and of course finally got to see the Imperial War Museum which had been on my bucket list since I was a a boy.

It was also the month when the Maritime Festival was held in Southampton, and to be frank it was not as good as the previous years one. 

 
September

Somewhere along the line in August I probably injured my ankle, and was not able to do much in the way of day trips. In fact September was a very quiet time altogether. The only major expedition I made was a return to Gosport to complete the World War One graves I had not done earlier in the year. The rest of that month I seemed to spend in a state of advanced vegging.

October. 

In October I started job hunting as I was concerned about the situation where I was. Fortunately (or with hindsight, unfortunately) I was able to find a job almost immediately in Basingstoke, and I made plans to pack up and leave Salisbury. Packing and arranging my move and finding new accommodation took up a lot of my time, and the only real highlight I had was on the shipwatching front when the worlds second largest cruise ship: Oasis of the Seas called in Southampton. 

 
  
November.

In November I closed the book on Salisbury and at the end of the first week of November I moved to Basingstoke. It was also Remembrance Day in Salisbury.

 

And while on the shipwatching front I went down to Southampton to see Quantum of the Seas. This was the maiden arrival of this new ship too, and she was interesting to see.

 

 

That was the last bit of shipwatching I will do for awhile, or at least until next year, although that does depend on where I am.

 December. 

December was a quiet one. Winter has set in and the weather has gone pear shaped along with it, although we have had some really beautiful days. Christmas Day being especially nice. I did three lots of gravehunting over December, the two local trips being especially memorable. I also revisited Brookwood, although I did not really have any specific grave that I was looking for. I do however have a new appreciation for it. 

And that was my year. I also had some finality on the job front, and from next week I am in the market (as they say). Whether I will remain in Basingstoke remains to be seen. My heart really wants me to go back to Southampton, but I have made no real plans. It all depends on the job market. On the gravehunting scene I will probably be returning to Brookwood, and I have a few churchyards on my list, I will also probably go to London one of these days to look up a few graves there, and of course to visit Norwood Cem. But until then the only thing I can say is…..

 
© DRW 2014-2018. Images and links recreated 21/05/2016.  
Updated: 31/12/2017 — 08:33

Seasons Greetings

Tomorrow is Christmas, which means that it is technically Christmas Eve. Guess what? I have not heard Boney M once this year, and that is excellent! 
 
I have however seen lots of Christmassy goodies and overpriced gifts, I have seen commercial take precedence over good taste, and I am afraid I have seen many strangely decorated houses. It is after all, the season to be jolly…. (whatever that means).
 
 
In short I would like to wish all my fans and friends and family (and other things beginning with an “f”) a Merry Christmas, and as much overeating as you can bear.  I will not really be overdoing it tomorrow, but if the weather is nice I may head off grave hunting. That’s a good way to spend the day.  Unfortunately I have some tough decisions to make by the end of the yeat, and they may cloud my seasonal cheer. But, be rest assured I shall eat chocolate sometime in the next few days.

 

© DRW 2014-2018. Image recreated 21/04/2016. Bah Humbug. 

Updated: 31/12/2017 — 08:34
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