Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Just a short one!

Two hour session

It's been one of those days when I promised so much, but spent the morning checking out my investments in AiM as the Stock Exchange runs down for the short Christmas break. A sort of shall I do a bit more, have a juggle or consolidate my interests.
As it turned out I didn't do a great deal, although was sorely tempted to go all in on my oily (Lenigas) holdings which have seen this year turn a fledgeling company with a market capital of £18m to a company with a market capital probably close to £120m!!
Big news due any day now on the latest soon to be completed wells.....it's gushing! It won't make me a millionaire but I shall do alright out of it.
I waited for any update news, but decided at about one o'clock that things should be left as they are.
As it turned out, no news and no change to the share price.

I thought I'll go down into the valley for perhaps the last time this year and see if I can get a big perch.
And so I did, arriving at around two. It really is wet down there, so wet that the farmer is pumping out the pond into the adjacent stream, and the pump is blocking the access way to the second lake.
By the looks of it, his overflow system just isn't coping with the excess spring water running in.
On arrival as I parked, I put up a buzzard and a heron from the pond side, they both flew out of sight around the bottom end of the pond, the buzzard giving it's mewing call from over my shoulder  time to time in the small wood behind throughout my two hour session.
As it turned out the big perch were elusive, fishing worm only, the rudd and the smaller perch were interested and one carp that sort of gave a half hearted fight, quite unlike the summer madhouse run around they usually give. It was easily subdued and netted.

Maybe I will go down again before I start concentrating on the chub in the Upper Witham in the New Year, being an hour away down the A1, it'll depend on winter road conditions, I think.

Tomorrow we're off to Louth to pick up our goose, for the second year it's just the two of us for Christmas day.
This year, for the first time since coming up here though, we will probably go to the local for a pint or two before dinner. It may depend if we get too stuck into the fizzy stuff  and orange juice for breakfast with our smoked salmon though. We've got ourselves some English sparkling this year, half a dozen bottles from Ridgeview,  Ditchling, East Sussex.

So, thanks to all who have put up with my writings this year.
I'll take this opportunity to wish you all a great Christmas and a happy, healthy 2015.

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And finally
Rest in peace Joe Cocker

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

I remembered!


It was getting on for 1:30 this afternoon when I set off to the valley, this time fully equipped with my worms and a few cockles from the batch I have lined up for a paella tonight.
My aim to try and get the mummy or daddy perch that resides in the lake or, as the carp are not as active, and as it turned out, nor the the thousands of tiny rudd that decimate any bait before it hits the deck, maybe see if there are any big roach or rudd.
I fished today with the 440a again, and and this time my built cane with a split cane top Milbro Maestro.
First cast with a worm and straight away, a bite and nice roach. This continued for the 2 hours I was fishing interspersed with rudd, two carp and finally a perch.
None of the fish were of any size,  the carp were probably in the five or six pound bracket, all on worm.
All good fun and a nice way to enjoy a late afternoon autumn session which was warmer than yesterday, the wind was blowing in the opposite direction.

I've decided that I don't like the action of the two cane rods used over the two sessions, so they will probably go on ebay maybe with the 440a,when people have their Christmas presents to spend.

So home and cooking at about 4:30, and if I say so myself, a very good paella washed down with half a bottle of Ozzie Pinot Grigio..... each.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

So much going on!


I haven't been since my last trip down to Ware and the River Rib.

Today,after fiddling about getting some bits and pieces sorted, and buying the last bottles of Christmas wine,I decided it was time to get out and fish.
No preparation,worms in the garage on top of the freezer.
Grabbed everything, thinking on the foot,as it were, picked up   some feeder pellets and just in case, a can of sweetcorn. 
Drove down to the valley with some lures, a handful of rods, well four, and 3 reels.
Slipped and slid all the way down the farm track, it's certainly damp down there, and arrived at the pond which was half covered, downwind, with thin ice.Water very clear.
I decided to try out lure fishing to see if I could interest the big perch resident there. No interest.
So I picked out one of my cane rods, the Aspindales Aero and matched it with my Mitchell 440a filled with Maxima, straight through to a porcupine quill,laying on to a size10.

F***, where are the worms? Must be in the car,f***, how the f*** did I forget them?
They were still in the garage on the freezer!
Quick think, ah plastics? Nope, not in the bag!
I'll have to be sweetcorn, not going home now I'm down here.
So sweetcorn it was, and I sat for about two and a half hours until dusk, had a couple of knocks, probably carp as I could see them moving about,the only thing giving me hope as they passed by the line, giving the float that teasing movement of a "bite".
Oh well, I'll have a couple of hours tomorrow afternoon for the perch and be very careful when loading the motor up that the big white bucket, goes in!
A couple of fishing invitations to take up around the Nene and Ouse, and the Upper Witham chub are calling. 
Which reminds me, keep an eye out for the unsold, "out of date" half stilton slabs on the clearance shelf in Tesco.

Little Bruv

Pete's home as I think I said, he been back to the hospital for further checks and been given the Ok. He's signed off,no drugs but, he's back to work on the 23rd!!!
His daughter Lauren, has nagged him into getting a kitten.She's got him twisted around her little finger.

Freezer Stocked

We've got our lamb, bred, born and fattened up in the field next door, a bit over 13 kilo's of prime English lamb slaughtered and butchered by the local craftsmen.
We've had our first tasters, and I have to say, not a hint of mint, so, poking our crop through the fence didn't make the slightest difference. (No, we didn't really).
The farmer has been let down on her orders of this years 16 lambs by 3 or 4 people, so we bought another one, and now have 30 kilo in the garage freezer. Should last us a little while.

Doesn't time fly?

This Christmas will be our 3rd since my Mum died 11th December 2011, and our 9th since Dad died in January 2004. 

I've been thinking about them a lot recently,what with Pete's problems, his partner Dawn and my Auntie Maggie passing all too recently, it sort of puts life into perspective a bit!

Still, we go on,and live each day as if it could be our last.
Both our thoughts, are that we do what we can,while we can.
So time to book more long haul holidays!
Canada in September,so a big gap to fill in between now and then.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Another holiday!!

4am Monday 25th November

First frost of the autumn up here.
At 4:30 we are on our way, after scraping a solid ice windscreen for the 6:20am flight to Schiphol and our onward journey to Boston Massachusetts.
Our initial problem should have been, given some forethought by us, unnecessary, we were put on standby!
So a fretful hour of wondering why I "didn't book our seats, after all it was Monday morning and the flights are effectively commuter journeys for those working in Holland".
Ah, the joys of hindsight!
We got on, and even sat together for the 40 minute flight.
13 hours later were were in our top floor room(1579) at the Boston Park Plaza.
Very nice too!
Sunset from 1579 through the glass, snow on the way overnight!
After gathering ourselves and unpacking we decided for a walk around just to get our bearings and find somewhere to have our evening meals.
We found a good few restaurants with easy walking from the hotel,but after some discussion decided we were better off, after this long day, to eat in the hotel.
As it turned out, for me the best clam and pasta meal I had over the few days, for Pauline much to my surprise, a burger, which she didn't enjoy...I knew she wouldn't!
The next two evenings were spent in restaurants just around the corner.
The first a fish restaurant, called Legal Sea Foods, which was alright, and as can be expected form a chain restaurant.
The next evening a very good Italian called Maggiono's, a big restaurant, with food so good we tried to book the next evening (Thanksgiving), but they had been taking bookings since October last year and were fully booked with 900 covers!
In the meantime we took the obligatory site seeing tour on the Trolley, an hour long trip with a good guide driver,but it was peeing down all day, so we didn't get off at the "highlight" spots, still very good, and I learned something new. The tea tipped in the harbour was 4 years old...no wonder they rebelled.
We had a wander around the markets,Quincy, Faneuil etc. None of which were traditional markets as we know them, but commercial shops and mall restaurants.
Our Thanksgiving dinner was to be at the Hard Rock Cafe, following a recommendation from a fellow guest at the Park Plaza.
As it turned out, they were making a half hearted effort with a turkey mash and cranberry sauce dinner,squeezed in with the standard menu. I really wanted an authentic turkey dinner
We abandoned our seats and crossed the road to a small hotel restaurant North 26. Which although "fully booked" found us a table for two.
Excellent staff and excellent food, I was even given a "secret" recipe for a very good bloody Mary by the cocktail mixer,after Pauline asked jokingly for the recipe.Unusual ingredients but one to experiment with.
I must admit if i'm having turkey, I would much rather have roast spuds and brussel sprouts. Mash and pumpkin didn't quite do it for me!
We liked Boston, a small city with plenty going on, our 4 nights were well worth the time taken to get there and back.

Little brother Pete

We kept in touch.
As of yesterday, he is still in Queens Romford and champing at the bit to get out.
Thankfully he seems to be recovering well, he tells me he has no after affects, so it's looking good.
I shall be seeing him on Friday, on my way back from another session with the International Drinking Society in the big smoke.