Thursday, 30 July 2009

Swelter Shelter

The heat kept most of the household awake, in spite of the ac and fans. Yesterday was the hottest day in Vancouver`s recorded history, they told us, but then today, a new record was set.

Today we pottered. We couldn`t do much more than potter, frankly. We went to the blueberry farm and bought blueberries. We went to the church where I signed things. We went to the Liquor Store where Austen bought beer, then Chapters, then Superstore. This evening, Kevin made Philly cheese steaks and I took Alex and Sue to Bard on the Beach to see Othello.

All of which seems somewhat pedestrian, in comparison to what continues to be endured by Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The verdict in her trial has now been delayed until 11th August. She has been under house arrest for 14 years, basically on the grounds of having won an election democratically, and being pro-democracy. Tut, tut. She is currently being tried because an American supporter swam across the lake surrounding her home, to warn her that he had had a vision that she was going to be assassinated.
So after 14 years of house arrest, she could be sent to prison for five years for something someone else did.

A new and much younger and fresher voice in the blogosphere, is that of my daughter Alex at 'Where to go from here...?' She's a woman with perception and vivacity, so I'm fairly sure she'll work it out.
Better go and collect her from Othello.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009


Just one long whinge about the heat really.
It reminds me of Somerset Maugham plays I used to watch on TV as a kid. Everyone always seemed to be languid from the heat.

The last two days have been hot beyond human endurance. Luckily for us, we were by swimming pools and air-conditioned malls, which we reached by travelling in air-conditioned cars.
Lotus eaters.

The journey down was not fun. The queue to cross the border was two hours, and the temperature was already way too hot. But the Canadian side of the border have the line organised well, so that you move forward in chunks and thus can sit and turn the engine off. Signs remind you to do so.
Still, the border guards at Peace Arch, a spectacular reminder that women are the second sex, 'Uniting Brethren of Two Nations', were on the whole, of pleasant demeanour, and they kindly let us in.

When we got home today, the heat inside the house was almost too much for the ac to handle. The garden was already parched, but we do - unbelievably for July - have one ripe tomato.

Monday, 27 July 2009

Headed South

...for three days.
Fecking hot here.

Saturday, 25 July 2009


Santiago - St. James - St. James's day - Austen's birthday.
Happy Birthday lad.

The Canadian Football match last night - mixed reviews. Some thought it was crap, some thought it was worse than crap.
Back at the ranch, I did an equally crappy job of babysitting. I put them in the bath and then scared the bejaysus out of them by turning the whirlpool on. They all leapt out of the bath and screamed.
Hmmm.. I quietened them down and tried to get them to brush their teeth, that didn't work either. Couldn't get the baby monitor to work, and could only get them to go to sleep by letting them watch TV in their parents' bed.

Tonight we all sat out on the balcony, (with the now working baby monitor) and watched the most incredible thunderstorm. I've certainly never seen anything like it here, and Kevin said he hasn't either.

Friday, 24 July 2009


Friday, affectionately known around here as Frydog.
Yesterday, the rest of the crew arrived, Gott sei Dank. We missed the wonderful moment when they walk out into arrivals, because....we hadn't quite arrived there ourselves.

Thursday morning, the time of arrival on the YVR website changed suddenly from 12.15 to 13.34.
Back at Gatwick, the plane had departed on time....but only from the gate. It moseyed around for a while and then the pilot decided that the blinking light on his panel was not to be ignored. All this truth-telling by the airlines these days is disquieting. The passengers weren't comforted to know that a sensor was mis-functioning. Especially when the pilot then announced that in fact, all was well and he was going to take off. I'm sure at least someone was thinking,
'Did he just say, "I'm going to risk it"?'

But...fair do's, the plane arrived safe and sound and clearly slightly before the new time that had been scheduled.
In the arrivals lounge, Austen was thinking,
'They're not here, should we just go to Tim Horton's?'
Heading towards the arrivals lounge,
"Fly me to the moon and let me play among the stars..."
I was thinking,
'They won't be through customs for twenty minutes at least, should I just go to Tim Horton's?'

The car hire business has become rather more competative since the last time they visited. This time, the same mini-van was hired for less than half the cost. Then the hard sell,
'Wanna buy a watch? Wanna buy a diamond ring?'
Well, not quite.
'For just nine dollars more you could have this key,' said the sales assistant.
'This is the key to a car with fully leather seats and TWO sunroofs,'
'Nine dollars a day though,'
'No thanks.'

And would they help fitting the child seats? Would they 'eck as like.
Had they been English, they'd have been sucking their breath in, shaking their heads and saying,
'Ooh, no guvnor, can't help you there, be more'n my job's worth,'

Rather impressively, Austen made it to nightfall. Full strength coffee was involved.

Tonight, the troops go off to see a Canadian Football game and I am babysitting the children.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

A Day Without YVR

Today was an Alex and me day - we went shopping, we had coffee, she gave me a facial, we talked about feminism. Essential woman stuff.

This evening, I have laughed, rolled around and almost wet myself, watching Bruno. The lady in the shop where I bought Ben's bed the other day, told me it was hysterical, and she was right, it was.

Later, the first night of fireworks in Vancouver, and we can see them from our bedroom window - we can also hear them. This, along with Bard on the Beach, signals summer.

Tomorrow, Austen, Sue, Holly, Teddy and Ellie arrive, which means, I guess, that at time of writing, they are probably getting ready to go to the airport.
Someone keeps telling me that everyone else is excited.
Hmmmm :))
Well, I know I am.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Two Down

Two down, five to go. Alex arrived today, safe and sound, and is now fast asleep. She caught me out, by being almost the first one out.

Photo to follow.

Spud bags received, thanks Sleepy!

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Quiet Riot

The weekend has been spent painting and furnishing the bedroom that is now Ben's. He's a happy camper, Laurence is a happy camper (well, if you can imagine Eeyore being a happy camper).
And I have lists.
And although I make it sound as though Ben and I have been busy all weekend, Kev has fixed all the electronics, put up the bed, filled the holes in the walls, cleaned the travel cot for Ellie and generally done all the things that you don't notice unless they don't get done.

Tuesday, I get Alex, and Thursday I get Austen, Sue, Holly, Teddy and Ellie.

So, in my blissed-out mummy state, I haven't really been concentrating on the state of the great outside world.
But it has been coming to me.

The woman who sold me Ben's bed, said she and her wife used to live in Alberta - where they don't seem to even know that Canada was the fourth country to legalise same-sex marriage. They would ask her,
'Is that legal?'
In some ways, not altogether surprising, since it has been legal in Ontario and then BC since 2003, closely followed by Québec in 2004, but Alberta had to wait until federal legislation in 2005.
Bizarrely, only a few weeks ago, a friend - of mixed race - told me that she had a conversation with people in Alberta in which they complained about black people, referring to M as 'people like us' (ie white folks).

Kevin sent me an article from The Register about a police raid on a barbecue in Devon.
Four police cars, a riot van and a helicopter were despatched to shut it down. I know Devon is a generally quiet county, but that is ridiculous. There must have been almost as many police officers as guests - of whom there were fifteen. I think the message here is - don't advertise your birthday party on Facebook.

But clearly the police are carefully monitoring Facebook, and responding in an efficient manner.
This is what your taxes are being spent on folks.

Friday, 17 July 2009

At Last

My boy, on the balcony.

Thursday, 16 July 2009


The UK Passport Office, I've said it before, and I'll say it again, are a shining example of how a government organisation should work, polite, helpful and efficient, the Normans who conquered Britain in 1066 and who introduced wholesale bureaucracy would be proud.
Ben now has a passport.
Now he has to get here, via Calgary.

Which puts me in mind of Saint Christopher, the patron saint of travellers. Now, generally speaking, I can see why they ended up as the patron saint of this or that, St. Francis was, fairly obviously, a bit of an animal lover, and Saint Christopher carried the Christ child across a river, so there we go, which is just as well, because if it were all a bit arbitrary, like Ministers being given portfolios, then woe unto Saint Chris, since Transport is the bum rap. Been a naughty boy or girl? Well then, it's Transport for you, now off you go and stand in a corner.

One exception to the rule that springs to mind, (saints, not ministers), is Saint Sebastien, patron saint of athletes, I dunno somehow, I think patron saint of homo-erotic art may be more appropriate.

The British comic in this clip is an atheist, and I have nowt against atheists, this one makes a case - all tongue in cheek of course (or is it?) for Jesus being gay.

I braved the Richmond roads by bicycle today. Holy Carp. On the one hand, yes, there is the ability to freely swear at passing motorists, and in fact you have to, since it offends them to have cyclists on their roads and they toot and lean out of the windows of their badly driven cars, and hurl abuse at you.
Which puts me in mind of being horrified, not long after arriving here, at a motorist driving in the cycle lane (most of Richmond doesn't have these, but this stretch did),behind a Sikh gentleman who was cycling along, yep, IN THE CYCLE LANE, and beeping repeatedly at the man.

The final insult today was when waiting to turn left into the car park of the church - being ridiculously unwilling to simply cut across the oncoming traffic - an idiot comes up behind me and starts beeping. So now they know that Christians have the foulest mouths and hand gestures of any religion, a skill, I feel, we should be justly proud of.

I was calmed by hearing about Saint Henry of Finland, who converted the pagan Finns, but got into a spot of bother for excommunicating some vicious thug for...well, vicious thuggery, which point he demonstrated ably to St. Henry, by following him out onto the icy wastes and splitting his head open with an axe.
Hmm, perhaps the original psycho axe murderer.
No idea why this calmed me.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009


Ben, my youngest is booked on a flight tomorrow. Ben, and travel, what could possibly go wrong?
At two o'clock this morning, I found out.
His passport expired in February.
Phone calls went back and forth for the rest of the night, there were tears - mine - there was frustrated anger - his - and at some point around daybreak for us, there was an appointment made at the London passport office, which is where he'll be tomorrow instead of YVR, but hopefully we'll get him over in the next couple of days.

A friend is flying home to her country of birth today. She is the same age as me, but is facing something huge, something for which she has to be stupendously brave. Her country takes these matters very seriously indeed, no matter how many years have elapsed since it happened.
When her mother died, our friend and her sister, went to the police in their home country, and reported their father's abuse of them when they were young. The details were such that she doesn't want any of her now grown-up children in court with them and thus having to live with the knowledge that she and her sister have.
Two other sisters, also most likely victims, are supporting their father. That beggars belief for me. I can understand an unwillingness to live through it all again - and in public, but to stand up in court and deny it ever happened....

The sun has got her hat on again.
We have seen some ants on the deck, and Kevin has put some ant traps out. The ants, for their part, know that you must avoid these things, so they skirt round them in a big sweep, well done ants, that's what we're trying to do, not kill you, but train you for intellectual greatness.

Tomorrow, I'll re-read this and none of it will make sense, because I feel like Thor and his mighty hammer are living in my head.
I'll bet several of you know this feeling.

Monday, 13 July 2009

Old Waves

It has been one of those bits and pieces days, when lots of small tasks have to be dealt with and I never feel as though I've accomplished anything.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon must be feeling that way right now. After not doing what he was told by the UN when he visited Burma recently, there has now been a declaration by the government that over two thousand political prisoners will be released from gaol so that they can take part in next year's elections. Well, apart from the one political prisoner who was elected as Prime Minister in 1990, but who has never been able to take up office, because she has been in prison ever since, Aung San Suu Kyi. I was amused by the idea that the honorific title 'Daw' meaning Auntie, or a revered older woman, is thought of as having higher status than her title 'Doctor'.

I was awoken at just after 2 this morning, by a multi-coloured lightshow playing on the curtains. I got up and peeped through the blinds, hoping it was a space ship, but in fact, it was just the Polizei doing....something. That is to say there was a police car skewed across the road with its lights doing a rumba. I could see no sign of any police-related activity, so perhaps they were just practising handbrake turns or some such.
Perhaps I dreamt it.

Myself and four other members of our church, those of us who are signing officers, had to go into a new bank to open an account. The importance of this had been explained to me and then filtered out.
The whole thing took an hour and a quarter, not really my own definition of 'just popping in to the bank', but oh well. At the end of all things, the assistant asked us,
'Are you going to promote any drugs, liquor, gambling or firearms?'
'Did we mention we are a church?' I asked her,
'I just had to say that,' she said in the 'calming the difficult but idiot child' voice,
'So did I, sometimes I can't fight back the wave of sarcasm, but I try.'

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Cholesterol and Church

Now we both have high cholesterol - well, obviously we both have for some time, just that now we know it. And here's the skinny - 80% of the cholesterol slurping around in our bodies is nothing to do with diet, it has been made by our bodies. Good cholesterol can scoop up bad cholesterol, and maybe exercise can reduce it, but in general, if, like us, you don't eat burgers and doughnuts every day, then it's the pharmaceutical industry to the rescue.

At church we anticipated trouble. The vicar was advised to hire security. We had a special meeting to discuss the possibility of the church hall being used as a homeless shelter, and not just for extreme weather this year, it will be open every night from December to March. The paper .... sorry, 'paper' said that the locals were restless about this. It encouraged people to come and have their say.

In the event, some of the church's own elderly fretted about needles, but it turns out that last winter's 'clients' were mostly alcoholics rather than needle users, and a man who had assisted at the extreme weather shelter, pointed out that those people would be out there anyway, in people's back gardens, garages, or, like a guy who stayed there this past season, being kicked to death by a horse because he tried to shelter in a barn. If they have needles, they can be left on the streets, in public places, or under supervised conditions in the church hall.

It passed by a two to one vote. More of the church elderly stood up and argued passionately to do what Christians are supposed to do. It was a good thing to be part of.

By coincidence, in the cycle of prayer, we prayed for the Diocese of Portsmouth, and Kenneth, the Bishop.

Saturday, 11 July 2009


Work expands to fill the time available, no bloody kidding. I haven't been getting through my daily list AND I haven't been lounging around, well, apart from yesterday when I became a lady who lunches with two of my other lunching lady friends.
But more to the point, DIRT expands to fill the time available. The more I clean, the more I see.

And then there's the dirt we make deliberately - compost. I have been caring for my compost. Fussing may be a better word. Eventually it will be tamed. I truly think that if Baboons wish to be considered less evil, or not evil at all, then they should make compost heaps out of their cast-off melon rinds and tend them with reverence. Since these days people seem to be in the extraordinary business of knowing the mind of God, then I think that God would like that.

The sun is shining on rainy Vancouver again. The good part about this (well, aside from being able to sit out on the balcony late into the evening), is that my tomatoes may ripen early, which will be splendid because this coming week, the offspring start to arrive.

Iran, praise be to Allah, has said it will offer a new package of proposals to put to the West - that's us. And to show how sincere they are, their foreign minister, a man, reported back that there were no new messages from the G8. Strictly speaking, he's right, the messages from the G8 were the same as before,
'We're distressed by your whole election fiasco, and stop enriching uranium.'

Here, the evening before last, a light aircraft, carrying two people and blood, nose-dived into a car park not far from Ikea. Fortunate indeed that it was evening, and the 'plane went into an empty car park.
But when you get mostly local news, it seems as though they never follow up on anything. Will we ever find out why it crashed? What's happening with that Russian chap holed up in a church so that Immigration Canada don't deport him?
I think we should be told.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Behind the Veil

Here's a passage from the book I am currently reading,

"He had been a conscious mythmaker, and he had turned himself into a myth. What they mourned ...... was the death of a dream. Like all great mythmakers , he had tried to fashion reality out of his dream, and in the end, ... he had managed to destroy both reality and his dream."

I wonder who it sounds like? Well, it isn't, the passage continues,

"Added to the crimes, to the murders and tortures, we would now face this last indignity - the murder of our dreams. Yet he had done this with our full compliance, our complete assent and complicity."

The writer is talking about Ayatollah Khomeini, who turned back time in Iran, took freedoms away from women that they had come to take for granted, because every woman should be able to take equality for granted.

She says,

"Our society was far more advanced than its new rulers, and women, regardless of their religious and idealogical beliefs, had come out onto the streets to protest the new laws....."

"At the start of the twentieth century, the age of marriage in Iran - nine, according to sharia laws - was changed to thirteen and then later to eighteen. My mother had chosen whom she wanted to marry and she had been one of the first six women elected to Parliament in 1963. When I was growing up, in the 1960s, there was little difference between my rights and the rights of women in Western the time my daughter was born....the laws had regressed to what they had been before my grandmother's time : the first law to be repealed.....was the family-protection law, which guaranteed women's rights at home and at work. The age of marriage was lowered to nine - eight and a half lunar years, we were told; adultery and prostitution were to be punished by stoning to death (for the woman); and women, under (sharia)law, were considered to have half the worth of men.....My youthful years have witnessed the rise of two women to the rank of cabinet minister. After the revolution, these same two women were sentenced to death for the sins of warring with God and spreading prostitution. One of them...remained in exile...The other, the minister of education and my former high school principal, was put in a sack and stoned or shot to death."

Azar Nafisi, 'Reading Lolita in Tehran'.

It's an incredible read, the story of her life in Iran as a university teacher, against the backdrop of the post-revolution Islamic Republic, and the Iran-Iraq war. What comes across most clearly is how ordinary this extraordinary woman is. She's a woman like any of us, or like any of the women in our lives. Women who could choose what they wore, or talked to, where they went, what they thought. All that was taken away, and they were plunged backwards in time, further back maybe than women have ever been in the West. Apart from the horrors, the deepest pain came from the lack of understanding of her own husband, a husband whom she was allowed to marry through love. He was happy, his business was doing well.
How fragile it all is.
And that's why those of us who do, continue to fight the good fight, because however much we have, it can all be taken away in a heartbeat.

After all that, I have someone else to congratulate. Alex's friend Hazel who has gained a First from Oxford. Well done Hazel! Great women, both of you!

Tuesday, 7 July 2009


Cockroaches, yes, I know, I'm coming to that.

Out of the many health things I fear, I think Alzheimer's is second to worst. (I think it would be even worse to be mentally aware and unable to communicate or move). But good news! Coffee, they have determined, may reverse some of the problems resulting from Alzheimers. I do like me some coffee, always have done in fact, just not after midday, or teatime at the latest.
Still, tally-ho!
Off to Timmie's more regularly we go!

Now all I need is a study that shows that drinking red wine ensures that if you ever have a stroke, it carries you off completely, and doesn't just leave you in a drooling state. Failing that, I'll keep taking my blood pressure tablets.

One thing about being at home, is that whatever you're doing can have a soundtrack to it, it tends to annoy people you work with outside of the home, to have to rock the Casbah all day long.

So, yesterday, on t' radio, an author of mid-European origins was being interviewed. He had written a book called 'Cockroach'. Now immediately, most people would probably think of Kafka, I know I did. The interviewer did too, but managed to avoid asking the question directly for quite a while. A while, in fact, during which, the plot of the book was discussed - an immigrant has a bad time making a decent living in Canada.
'Is there a message in this book for us Canadians?' asked the interviewer, 'that perhaps the 'Canadian dream' isn't always all it promises?'
'No,' said the Russian-sounding gent, 'it is not about that, the book says nothing about the experience of the immigrant,'
'But it's about an immigrant,'
'Ah, but it is based on MY experience as an immigrant,'
'So, did you have difficulty making ends meet in Montréal?'
'It isn't about this, at first, I lived a very simple life in Montréal, but this isn't what this book is about,'
'Right, so, then, the person in the book imagines he is a cockroach,'
'Yes, one day I see a cockroach and I use this,'
'Do you not think that is rather like Kafka's 'Metamorphosis'?'
'No, I wish I hadn't used a cockroach, because many people are always saying this, it is all they can think of, it is not to do with Kafka, there are many metamorphoses, not all of them are about cockroaches, I wish I had never made it a cockroach, perhaps a spider,'
'But yet you did, and the book is called, 'Cockroach'.....'

How long, I wonder, before the sightings of Whacko Jacko start? I notice that he has been elevated to sainthood, no longer may anyone mention any dodginess with regard to children, and soon I imagine there will be public humiliation of those who made accusations.

Cockroaches? Who mentioned cockroaches?

Sunday, 5 July 2009


Frustrating day really.
Arriving at church I was sidetracked into the office to sign stuff. Then I had to do someone else's reading, which I don't mind at all, but I like to be able to re-word beforehand so as to avoid sexist language.
After the service we had a film about Gay and Lesbian Christians. Guess what, the only people who went to see it were those of us who are not homophobic. But it was an interesting film nonetheless.
It followed the lives of some ordinary American families who had been suddenly educated by one of the children in the family coming out. Most of them responded -in the end- admirably, but not before one lesbian daughter had committed suicide.

Leviticus was shouted about a lot by the sort of people who you wouldn't expect to even be able to pronounce a word with more than two syllables, but Leviticus is easily debunked by moving back a couple of verses from the ones condemning homosexuality, to the ones telling us not to plant two seeds in the same place, wear certain fabrics together or eat a whole slew of things that we do eat.

Bishop Desmond Tutu said that it had never occurred to him that God thinks less of him because he is black, or less of a woman than a man, nor less of a homosexual person than a heterosexual.
It was a powerful film and when the lights went back on, everyone was crying.

Back at the Schloss, things were not going well. I turned on the computer and found...nothing. Bugger. Kevin had spent the weekend - if by the weekend you count Thursday and Friday - fixing someone else's laptop, and our entire TV system, and now mine was dead. Fortunately, he resurrected it, but there are odd things that couldn't be retrieved. I only have e-mail from last November and my pictures go up to the same time - many of which I had in fact deleted. Ah well. The important things, my documents, are there.

I spoke to Austen and he pointed out that there would only be two more Sunday phone calls until they are all here. Put like that, only one more Sunday phone call until Ben is here.

The weather breaks tomorrow.

Friday, 3 July 2009


'Resting' - day 3. If cleanliness is next to Godliness, which of course it is, Schloss Schneewittchen is getting closer all the time.

Another elevation is that of my strawberries. Having been impressed by Sleepy's strawbs - which look like the ones that you might buy, and by her friend's comment that his, grown on the roof, do too, I have hoisted ours up to a level where they might get shone upon more.

Giddy up! Auntie Beeb is going to be doing a one-off programme showing Del-boy Trotter as a teenager. They won't get it in Britain until this time next year, but I'll be waiting.....

The last couple of days have been windy, making it too cool to sit out on the balcony in the evening, but tonight, after a blistering day, the balcony is the place to be. And...I can sit here with the laptop and watch the wizard's ball changing colour. I think it reminds me of the coloured lights in the rock gardens on the front in Southsea. Sometimes our parents would take us there as a treat of a summer's evening. Not much of a treat really, to pre-adolescent girls, but a lasting memory nonetheless.

Unemployment is a challenge.
The first challenge is to keep busy, but then, I don't have much of a problem there. I have more of a problem fitting in everything I want to do in a day. Might be different had I been laid off in the winter of course, not so much gardening to be done then - even for those of us who garden mainly in pots.

I can see that it could also be a strain on relationships. It's important to be aware of each others' feelings, acknowledge and be sensitive to them.
When I first arrived in Canada, I went from a job that was full-on and took 60 hours a week of my time, to being becalmed, like a ship with no wind in her sails. Plenty of the other kind of course, but not in me sails. It was easy to get depressed.

Now, I've gone from a job that was a little over half of those hours, and a third of the pay, but it gave me a feeling of worth. So whilst Kevin goes to a job with long hours and which is horrendously stressful at times, I get to stay home.
Normally, by evening, the last thing I want to do is to go out, yesterday, we had arranged to go to a friend's, and I was quite up for going out for once, Kev could probably have done with getting home and relaxing.

But however much I feel undervalued and let down by my former employers, I never feel that way in my own home. Even, in fact, when my extreme cleaning causes Kevin extra stress because he comes home and I've broken the bug screen and he has to fix it.
But then, this is only day three.
I know I can rely on him, but will I crack?

Wednesday, 1 July 2009


Today is a Bank Holiday - Canada Day and unlike the USA's Independence Day, ours is about a union rather than a separation. The British North America Act of the 1st of July 1867 saw Canada created as a country of four unified Provinces.
A rather confused bus went past us yesterday, with its electronic sign reading 'Happy Holidays' which frankly, is code for Christmas.

In personal terms, far more importantly than Canada Day, my daughter Alex gained a good honours degree in English with American Studies from one of the country's most prestigious universities, and we're all very proud of her. My own Bachelor's degree is in French with Philosophy, so I found it quite fascinating reading her draft dissertation, it gave an insight into the literature of the southern states of the USA that I had no knowledge of.
I'm always chuffed to little mintballs when I learn stuff from my kids - not an infrequent occurrence.

I see that British grande dame of sitcom, Molly Sugden has died. One reason this seems bizarre is that she was pre-deceased by another grande dame of British acting, Wendy Richards, who played the young sexpot in 'Are You Being Served?' to Sugden's middle-aged frustrated spinster, who constantly referred to her pussy. Just for laffs you understand.

This page has a video of the building and burning of the Ghost Ship to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Naughty King Hal's coronation. Alex says it was phenomenal, not her exact words, but that was the impression.
Crazy, crazy, Pompey and King Harry would have been made for each other, if only he hadn't stood and watched the pride of his fleet, the Mary Rose, sink into the Solent.