Winter Drawers On

Humorous Protagonist A: ‘I’m not going to answer the door in my longjohns.’

Humorous Protagonist B: ‘I didn’t know that there was a door in your longjohns.’

The Orchestra Pit: Ba-dum-tish.

Audience: Guffaw guffaw guffaw [and continue until your t*ts drop off and/or the Stage Manager indicates otherwise by holding up a board asking for ‘QUIET’.]

My goodness me but it’s been a long year, Mrs Worthington, and I did advise you not to put your daughter on the stage.

Ice on the solar panels this morning. Dullth that remained unrelenting until it relented, sort of, early-afternoon, and morphed into slightly-less-dullth. There’s wind again now, huffing and puffing and poking through the ventilation and whistling tunelessly.

The sittyation inside my head’s not dissimilar. I’ve been mentally inclement since about April.

Ovaltine helps, as does sitting in the Lada position breathing in through my ears and out through my the Lada position is similar to the Lotus Position but the build quality’s just not there, really. Om mani padme Soviet Bloc automotive ho hum.

The Moon continues to Ruby Wax and John Wayne but it’s not even gibbous at the moment.

Odd to think that somewhere up there is a lonely little Chinese robot with a bucket and spade, collecting samples and building sand-pagodas. If I had any advice to offer to a little Chinese robot, and I do, then it would be to reach over your shoulder with the tin-snips, clip off your antenna array and settle down in splendid isolation. Forget all about coming back, you don’t want to come back to Earth. If you get wanderlust then pop around to the dark side. Forget about planet Earth, it’s done for. Save yourself, Little Confucius!

Oh, the sky’s still quite nice here sometimes, I grant you that…

…but the fauna has gone quite insane.

Wibble moo fribble de-clomp.

The only things that talk any sort of sense these days are the trees.

All except for the one in the lead photograph, the Hammer House of Horror Tree, waving his arms over the Temple of Sacrifices, just a frosty lob away from the Soggy Pit of Old Bones.

I bet there’s been many a young virginal local in diaphanous nightwear woken up on that plinth to find a white-hooded red squirrel stood overhead, dagger poised, and a flock of sheep in a trance all chanting the lyrics to Black Sabbath’s ‘We’re all going on a Summer Holiday’ – backwards. Aaab aaab aaab a-ab-ab suuuuummmerrrr holidayyyyyy…

Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee eat your hearts out.

There is increasing Seasonal Sog upon the towpaths.

Sometimes there’s nothing to be done but to dance the dance of the cartoon character on ice, and hope to keep up with the beat. Were I a younger man (a couple of hundred years younger at least) I’d have taken a run-up at this patch, assumed my best surfer stance and scooted right through it. These days though I stagger through in the manner of someone who has only hired their body for the week and doesn’t really know how to drive it.

Other portions of the towpathingery are quite pleasant though, in especially by comparison. This stretch is opposite the long-term ‘Slow Down Moorings’.

‘Slow Down Moorings’ is by far and away the most popular name for stretches of moorings, and there are signs everywhere to prove it, usually at the start and end of every stretch of moorings.

The next most popular name for moorings seems to be “Dead Slow”, which brings us nicely back to the Horror Tree and the Sacrificial Slab in the local horses’ second-best grazing field.

Folk aren’t very imaginative now. Once upon a time moorings would probably have been called ‘Woodbine Moorings’ or ‘Rose Villa Moorings’ or ‘Boaty McBoatFace Moorings’. I suppose that it saved the Canal Rozzers Ltd a few quid, calling them all by the same name and having loads of identical signs made up.

Still, I digress. One perambulates where one can these days, while one (still) can. Life is soggy in whatever direction one strikes out. Best not thought about, eh?

Time for a swift cocoa substitute methinks, before bed. Perhaps two. Must remember to stoke up Mr Stove, too, otherwise I’ll like as not wake up with both eyeballs frozen solid, and you do not need to see my (involuntary) Marty Feldman impression – and nor do I. Tis bad enough meeting myself in the mirror in the mornings as it is.

  • Bri-Nylon deckchair-stripe nightshirt – ✓
  • Flask of fortified Horlicks – ✓
  • ½ a candle in a saucer, in case I wake in the night – ✓
  • 2 matches, in case the first one won’t strike, or something – ✓
  • Teddybear – ✓

Right, chin-chin then for the mo, Muskies.

Keep your fingers crossed for a spot of solar sunshine tomorrow – I need the Witamin D and the Cardinal’s batteries would like the ergs, thank you very much.

Gossip and scandal when I have any.

Ian H.


    1. Doctor, Doctor, I have terrible nightmares, multiple personalities (all of them boring), every neuroses in the book, I am taking every illegal drug known to modern man and I wouldn’t recognise reality if you hit me in the face with it…

      Well don’t come here moaning to me about it and wasting NHS time – go and get a job in advertising.


    1. I recommend some form of a return of Huntin’ with Hounds… release a poltician a day into the suburbs of Manchester or Liverpool or Grimsby with a ten minute head-start, and then blow a hooter to signify a free-for-all. Ninety-nine percent of them (the world over, not just in England) have been utterly dire for decades, not a “statesman” (person) among them. All of them in office for what they can get, not what they can do.

      It seems that politics has taken the place of Art School. One used to get into Art Schol by failing all exams and applying, now that is how you get into politics – be fit for nothing else!

      Aside from this I have no strong opinions on the matter. 😉

      p.s., if boaters can help in any way with decorating the lampposts with our great and glorious, do just let us know – we have ropes, we know how to tie knots…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. If you were to stand for parliament on that ticket i predict an overwhelming majority for you…..the only problem being the amount of deposit now required to bcome a candidate…but i am sure a whipround would raise the necessary.
        I can now, thanks to you, go for a siesta to dream of Starmer getting on his marks as opposed to on his knees.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. …I’m…….. standin’ on the corner of the street, watchin’ a certain little red double decker bus drive by…. oh me… oh my….. [cue the guitar solo]…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Being a vegetarian of sorts you might want to mount the branch on the side of the Card. Woolsack and rename your gaff… The White Hart. A new career?Landlords of hostelries in the main have a modicum of conviviality. Pity your time at charm school was cut painfully short. I know, I know, it did seem like a good idea at the time, Matron is still in rehab…


    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ah yes, but were I to become a Public House I’d likely be closed for the foreseeable and further in hock to the brewery thereafter, whereas as a floating monastery I shall be preserved from austerity measures and cuts until at least the Dissolution, and I am so very good at being dissolute). Oh, hang on though… 15:36 you say? Isn’t that about half past three in the afternoon, just before tiffin? B’ger!


  2. The thought of Little Confucius on his Pat Malone brought a tear to my eye. Reminds me of the lonely droids watering the plants in the spaceship in the film Silent Running from my impressible youth. Good to know that in the terrestrial sphere, the horses even have a second-best grazing field. Things haven’t been rationalised to the bone quite yet.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Silent Running was an incredible film, the three little robots were probably far and away the stars, far and away in the stars. We could do with a similar (but not so flawed) arrangement today, since we appear to be such appallingly poor custodians of local flora and fauna.

      My worry with all of these robot expeditions to the Moon and to Mars is that the locals are gathered behind the robots, dodging around to keep out of the camera range… and laughing.


  3. The tree in the first pic seems a bit porno. Perhaps that is the reflection of my soul. Hard to discern.

    It’s hard to blame the state of the tow path on the current pandemic but I find myself trying. This pandemic has caused me many mental problems. Including pulling up my mask in an empty office to answer the phone. But less apparent is my automatically assigning bad conditions to the pandemic. I’m not entirely sure if I will emerge with what passes for sanity at the end. After its over, I hope that sanity is graded on a curve and everyone else’s crazy will water down my own.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Once this is all done, the dust has settled and our politicians are safely boxed and buried (under mirrors and garlic) there will like as not be a new test for sanity – can you grin inanely with both sides of your face at once (left/right)? If yes then you’re uber-sane. If all that you can manage, like me, is a sort of grimace, then you’re just ordinary-sane. I suspect that we’ll all be too busy paying Rishi Sunak to worry… 😉


  4. The sogth on the towpath looks, well, soggy! At least it’ll keep the hoi poloi (is that how it’s spelled?) from traipsing.
    We have wildlife, too. Bl**dy squirrels, as I mentioned before. A murmuration of starlings has taken residence in a tree nearby. They twitter and squeak a lot. And there’s the ever present herring gulls. Squark, scream, cry, chunter and lots more sounds.
    I hope your eyeballs don’t get frozen. You need to give Mr Stove a talking to so he’ll keep you warm all night.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. For tiny creatures desperate to gain and retain energy to see them through the night, small birds do make a disproportionate amount of sound, don’t they?

      The geese around here have three modes. Asleep, floating gently where the currents take them. Trying to paddle past my boat in long lines in some sort of stealth operation, and about-facing whenever they think that I’ve noticed their manoeuvres. Take off and landing for circuits and bumps – the noisiest activity of all, and accompanied by a good deal of violent splashery. Subtle birds they are not. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I tried to do a George Formby, but it needed a complete re-score. Either that or you get a flannelette nightshirt.
    Turned out nice again!

    Liked by 2 people

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