Zone Doubt, a.k.a. 'Surreal Я Us'...

Joules, trusted by... dozens... to make a drama out of your crisis...

Other sites:

:: JAT :: WaveWrights :: Publications ::

I live to write. It's not wise to get in my way.

... I'd write my autobiography, but no-one would believe it....

If you come across any words you don't recognise in this blog, take a look at the Taylorspeke Glossary in the left-hand infopane, you'll usually find a definition there.

The Poppy Tales

(Transformers fanfiction!)

Transformers mini-comics here.

Adventures in Orchids

Apparently I am now collecting them...

There's room for one - or maybe two, at a pinch - more on that bedroom windowsill (the only one in the house that's ideal for them). Let's see what I find. Well, that didn't last long...

EO - Everlasting orchid. Phalaenopsis. I've had this orchid since 2007 and it just keeps flowering...

AO - Alien face orchid. Phalaenopsis . Bought 2018 - lovely little flowers, all different patterns!

RO - Rescued orchid photo to come when it flowers. Phalaenopsis. Rescued from a bin up the road in 2019. Classic!

TO - Tiny orchid. Phalaenopsis. Bought at Tesco 21.8.20. It just begged to come home with me. How could I say no?

CO - Crimson orchid. Cambria. Another Tesco find. This one may be going to live in Ken's room once we've redecorated and put up the new shelving; it prefers a cooler, less sunny windowsill. If so, I'll need to find another cambrian to keep it company.

GO - Golden orchid. Phalaenopsis. Saw this one when I bought CO and left it behind - then immediately regretted it as soon as I got home. Never seen one like it before. Ken, bless him, went back over to Tesco in the rain and bought it for me...

DO - Dendrobium Orchid. Smells of wisteria, so beautiful...

RO2 - Rescued orchid no 2. Phalaenopsis. This is the one I rescued from the wall along the road middle of 2021.

PO. Pink orchid. Phalaenopsis. This is the one I bought at Cabury Garden Centre on special, late 2021. It's much happier here!

TWO. Teeny weeny orchid, Phalaenopsis. Rescued from Tesco end 2021 (I think).

My IMDb ep summaries

Arthur of the Britons
Star Maidens
The Starlost
Space Rangers
The Sentinel (part: seasons 2 and 3)
Swamp Thing (part: season 3)
Gravedale High
Transformers: Armada
Transformers: Energon
Transformers: Cybertron (part)
Misfits of Science (four eps)
Zoo Gang
Jupiter Moon
Transformers: Beast Wars (part: seasons 2 and 3)
Transformers: Beast Machines (part)
Vampire Princess Miyu
Nathan Barley
No Heroics
Undermind (3 eps)
Will Shakespeare (Tim Curry version)
12 Kingdoms
Trigun (ep 8)
Hyperdrive (season 2 ep 3)
The Café

For later:

Missing Earthian ep
Missing Haibane Renme eps)
(And possibly Marine Boy...)

Silver birch at Eastwood 


"Autumnal - nothing to do with leaves. It is to do with a certain brownness at the edges of the day... Brown is creeping up on us, take my word for it... Russets and tangerine shades of old gold flushing the very outside edge of the senses... deep shining ochres, burnt umber and parchments of baked earth - reflecting on itself and through itself, filtering the light. At such times, perhaps, coincidentally, the leaves might fall, somewhere..."

(Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead Act 2: Tom Stoppard)


I love this time of year. I love the colours, the sharp slant of sunlight on the trees, mosaics of acid-yellow and harts- blood, velvet and darkness and a haze of mist-grey over the hills. I love its immanence, its mellowness, the tang of frost just around the corner of the year...

Watching the little birds in the goat-willow in my garden, I realised something more.

I love this land with a fierce, possessive love, deep-rooted in two thousand years of history. From the frosted beaches and cloud-brushing peaks of the north to the wind-haunted meanderings of the rivers of the east, from the sensuous rolling patchworked hills of the south to the demanding dark moors of the west, this land seeps into bone and blood and synapse, mother of motley nobility, culture, individual freedoms. It can be known. It can be understood. It can be felt deep inside.

I love its effortless eccentricities, its vigour and vibrancy, its flawed perfections, its silent strength and tenacious resilience, its hard-won tolerances and intense and variable beauty, the profound energy in its sacred mythical landscape.

Home and more-than-home, the forces that shape and protect and bind, in me, as I am in the land. Love returning love in the stillness for those who'll only take the time to listen...

(Joules, Autumn 2004)

All photographs taken by Joules unless otherwise specified. All photographs © Joules A Taylor or other specified individual.

In Memoriam

17.03.09 - Argent

25.07.08 - Raptor

18.12.07 - Quyn

02.12.06 - Ryme

Currently enjoying:
Transformers - IDW, Prime, Animated, Rescue Bots.

Currently reading:
Various Transformers books and graphic novels.

Currently working on:

Currently chuffed with:
My garden

Currently miffed at:
Nestlé, Nonpres Tinyhands Fart, Toadface Farage

Currently maintaining:

Blog Pics
I've gathered some of my pages of photos together: the page of links is here. I'll be adding more as time goes by!

Evil Squid
A Little Glossary of Taylorspeke
(in no particular order)

plit popints - n. Typo for 'plot points' typed on a keyboard with more than half the characters worn off...

[PING] (alt [ping]) - n. A brainwave. The text equivalent of a lightbulb going on blindingly over someone's head. Usually mine. And usually at the most inconvenient of times. [sigh]

TPTB - The Powers That Be.

wulmet - n. A person of little or no talent who somehow inveigles himself into a position where he is in power over other, far more talented people and uses his position to downplay them in order to try to make himself feel superior.

biteable - referring to an anatomical part vb, tasty.

Flatterfed - vb. 27.02.08: my typo for flattered, but since it's so cutely apt I thought it would fit nicely here. Lutra defined it as "the lovely warm feeling of satisfaction resulting from enthusiastic reviews..." (which I've been getting for my MB fics).

Composted - vb, 'compos mentis', mentally capable of working. Contrast with uncomposted or non- composted, not 'compos mentis', not capable of working, hungover...

Cumbles - n, cucumbers.

Kewp - how Ken says 'thank you'. We rather like Lutra's 'nanx', too...

Musekick - noun, music, without which I cannot work.

'feinne - noun, caffeine, essential for correct mental functioning, especially first thing in the morning. I prefer mine in the form of SodaStream Diet Coke. And on that subject...

Skoosh - verb, noun. To skoosh - to add CO2 to a sodastream bottle filled with water to make it fizzy, prior to adding Diet Coke syrup (or just drinking as sparkling water). A skoosh - a bottle of water that has been skooshed. Skooshy - something that has been skooshed, water, or that whipped cream that comes in tins you have to shake then upend and press the nozzle...

Shoogle - verb. To shake gently, for example, of roast potatoes in a roasting tin to ensure they're covered with oil. I have vague memories of this being a real Scottish colloquialism...

Stegasaurus - n, spider of the genus tegenaria. Why? No idea. I just find it easier, that's all...
Edit 08.09.07: Lutra thinks that Brian is a good name for a mini-stegasaurus. From now on, any 'Brian's in the posts may be assumed to be a tegenaria. Except where otherwise specified.

Viterals - noun, vitamins + minerals. Also a pun on victuals.

Splish - verb. A combination of slosh and splash.

Parrots - noun, paracetemol (from the old joke "Why are there no aspirin tablets in the jungle? Because the parrots eat 'em all...")

Maggles - noun, magpies. As opposed to non-magical people.

Flamewings - noun. Swifts. So called because the first time we became aware of them was an early summer evening when they were flying high, the light from the setting sun seemingly turning their wings to flames. Lovely little birds. We always know summer's arrived when we hear their high-pitched squeeing.

Murfs - noun, moths.

Peasant cut - noun, roughly cut up into big chunks, e.g. vegetables chopped in a hurry for a hearty stew or soup. By extension, anything prepared in a hurry - haircut, material, even a first draft of a story...

Giraffe - noun, a carafe (of wine, coffee or water, for example).

Shrumps - noun, mushrooms.

Splings - noun, Kai's spelling homework: by extension, any spelling.

Tyops - noun, typos. var toyps, typso, psyto, psoyt, etc. Usual result of a dose of the fingerials (see next entry).

Fingerials - (pr. fin GEEE ree yalls) noun, fingers that will not type what you want them to.

Haddock - noun, time, of which I never have enough. (Origin of this term here.)

Sleep - noun? vb? a.k.a. sheeeeeeeeep.... I used to know what this word meant...

The Updates Blog

The place to stay notified of WaveWrights' Fiction updates: Zone, Darkside, DarkRealm, Matrix, Vault, Safehouse 13...

my computer gremlin Butch. click the pic to see the larger image

Butch, my computer gremlin. Click the pic for larger version, and read his adventures here...

Butch by the talented 


A gift for me! Butch by the very talented Sylverthorne. Click pic for larger image.



This is MY haddock. It was caught exclusively for me by Talon. No, you can't have any. I need all the haddock I can get!!

A'lestrel by Valkyrie.

A'lestrel - a gift for me from Valkyrie...

Albino Alsatian Benten (c) MEBird 


Another gorgeous Valkyrie gift for me - Benten the Albino Alsatian! Click thumbnail for larger image.

Radittsu, an oekaki for my birthday 04 



Oekai by Bakayaro Onna - Radittsu at his sexiest...

The Zone Plant from
The Zone 



OrganicHTML (which alas no longer seems to exist...)
[::..My Regular Reads..::]
:: Astronomical Pic of the Day [>]
:: What is Space... [>]
:: Dark Roasted Blend [>]
:: BLDG [>]
:: Watchismo Times [>]
[::..Fun Places..::]
::PALEOMAP Project
Absolutely fascinating.
:: Skymap
Check out the night sky where you are!
[::..Useful Sites..::]
:: GreenNet
First stop for environmental matters
:: The Forest of Avon
Our local community forest and places to visit
:: The Guardian
Online Guardian Newspaper.
:: Symbols
Exactly what it says
:: World Timeserver
For checking the current time around this world
:: Universal Currency Converter
Actually it's just a terran-global currency converter, not universal, but it's still useful...

So what is it with the haddock? Am I some kind of fish freak?

I'll leave that to others to decide.

The tale (or tail if you prefer) harks back to October 2000, when my GoodTwin and I, ably assisted by Sue, ran the first UK Professionals convention...
It's common knowledge that I never have enough time, and I was determined not to bewail the fact that weekend: hence I promised not to use the 'T' word...
Of course, that didn't really work (if nothing else I had to let the trainees know what times things were supposed to be happening!) so we decided a substitute word would be employed instead. There were several suggestions. Banana came very close to being chosen. However, I eventually decided that 'haddock' fitted the bill nicely. Ever since, haddock=time. Hence the title of my forthcoming autobiography,
My Half-Life in the Haddock Space Continuum....

Normally I wouldn't, but these were just irresistible...

How could I resist?

Just too adorable...

and to complete the rainbow...

These Too-Kawaii Kitties
were adopted from
Ghost's Anime Page (which appears to have disappeared, alas...)

Useful sites:

Yamato -
Fabulous anime figures

Anime Lyrics
A huge selection... evil popups

Anime still needed to complete series' I'm collecting... Many thanks to everyone who has helped me acquire the collection!
Ai no Kusabi

   Dj: June Special
   CD: Ambivalence

Cyber City Oedo 808

   All 3 eps on Video, dubbed
   Dj: Cyberage 1-3
   Illustrated Book 2 (Benten's) in Japanese

From Eroica with Love

   Manga Vols 1, 9, 11

Mirage of Blaze

   DVD Vol 1 (eps 1-4)

R.G. Veda

   English Manga: Vol 1
   Japanese Manga: Vol 1-7 complete
   Tarot Pack
   R.G.Veda video

Twelve Kingdoms

   Anime Vol 1-12: complete

Under the Glass Moon

   Manga Vol 1, 2
Vol 3 needed

Vampire Hunter D - Bloodlust


   Vampire Hunter D Book 1

New Vampire Miyu

   (Studio Ironcat) Manga Vols 1 -5 (complete)

Yami no Matsuei

   Viz Manga: English translation, Vols 1 - 11 (complete: I believe vol 12 is only available online)
   Japanese 3-DVD set
   Central Park Media: Descendants of Darkness Vol. 1, English/Japanese subbed.

[::..Joules SPfied..::]

... this is Terra? How the hell'd I end up here...?

(Thanks, Lutra, for the quote!)

07/01/2002 - 07/31/2002
08/01/2002 - 08/31/2002
09/01/2002 - 09/30/2002
10/01/2002 - 10/31/2002
11/01/2002 - 11/30/2002
12/01/2002 - 12/31/2002
01/01/2003 - 01/31/2003
02/01/2003 - 02/28/2003
03/01/2003 - 03/31/2003
04/01/2003 - 04/30/2003
05/01/2003 - 05/31/2003
06/01/2003 - 06/30/2003
07/01/2003 - 07/31/2003
08/01/2003 - 08/31/2003
09/01/2003 - 09/30/2003
10/01/2003 - 10/31/2003
11/01/2003 - 11/30/2003
12/01/2003 - 12/31/2003
01/01/2004 - 01/31/2004
02/01/2004 - 02/29/2004
03/01/2004 - 03/31/2004
04/01/2004 - 04/30/2004
05/01/2004 - 05/31/2004
06/01/2004 - 06/30/2004
07/01/2004 - 07/31/2004
08/01/2004 - 08/31/2004
09/01/2004 - 09/30/2004
10/01/2004 - 10/31/2004
11/01/2004 - 11/30/2004
12/01/2004 - 12/31/2004
01/01/2005 - 01/31/2005
02/01/2005 - 02/28/2005
03/01/2005 - 03/31/2005
04/01/2005 - 04/30/2005
05/01/2005 - 05/31/2005
06/01/2005 - 06/30/2005
07/01/2005 - 07/31/2005
08/01/2005 - 08/31/2005
09/01/2005 - 09/30/2005
10/01/2005 - 10/31/2005
11/01/2005 - 11/30/2005
12/01/2005 - 12/31/2005
01/01/2006 - 01/31/2006
02/01/2006 - 02/28/2006
03/01/2006 - 03/31/2006
04/01/2006 - 04/30/2006
05/01/2006 - 05/31/2006
06/01/2006 - 06/30/2006
07/01/2006 - 07/31/2006
08/01/2006 - 08/31/2006
09/01/2006 - 09/30/2006
10/01/2006 - 10/31/2006
11/01/2006 - 11/30/2006
12/01/2006 - 12/31/2006
01/01/2007 - 01/31/2007
02/01/2007 - 02/28/2007
03/01/2007 - 03/31/2007
04/01/2007 - 04/30/2007
05/01/2007 - 05/31/2007
06/01/2007 - 06/30/2007
07/01/2007 - 07/31/2007
08/01/2007 - 08/31/2007
09/01/2007 - 09/30/2007
10/01/2007 - 10/31/2007
11/01/2007 - 11/30/2007
12/01/2007 - 12/31/2007
01/01/2008 - 31/01/2008
01/02/2008 - 29/02/2008
03/01/2008 - 31/03/2008
01/04/2008 - 04/30/2008
01/05/2008 - 31/05/2008
01/06/2008 - 30/06/2008
01/07/2008 - 31/07/2008
01/08/2008 - 31/08/2008
01/09/2008 - 30/09/2008
01/10/2008 - 31/10/2008
01/11/2008 - 31/11/2008
01/12/2008 - 31/12/2008
01/12/2008 - 31/12/2008
01/01/2009 - 31/01/2009
01/02/2009 - 28/02/2009
01/03/2009 - 31/03/2009
01/04/2009 - 30/04/2009
01/05/2009 - 31/05/2009
01/06/2009 - 30/06/2009
01/07/2009 - 31/07/2009
01/08/2009 - 31/08/2009
01/09/2009 - 30/09/2009
01/10/2009 - 31/10/2009
01/11/2009 - 30/11/2009
01/12/2009 - 31/12/2009
01/01/2010 - 31/01/2010
01/02/2010 - 28/02/2010
01/03/2010 - 31/03/2010
01/04/2010 - 30/04/2010
01/05/2010 - 31/05/2010
01/06/2010 - 30/06/2010
01/07/2010 - 31/07/2010
01/08/2010 - 31/08/2010
01/09/2010 - 30/09/2010
01/10/2010 - 31/10/2010
01/11/2010 - 31/11/2010
01/12/2010 - 31/12/2010
01/01/2011 - 31/01/2011
01/02/2011 - 28/02/2011
01/03/2011 - 31/03/2011
01/04/2011 - 30/04/2011
01/05/2011 - 31/05/2011
01/06/2011 - 30/06/2011
01/07/2011 - 31/07/2011
01/08/2011 - 31/08/2011
01/09/2011 - 30/09/2011
01/10/2011 - 31/10/2011
01/11/2011 - 30/11/2011
01/12/2011 - 31/12/2011
01/01/2012 - 31/01/2012
01/02/2012 - 28/02/2012
01/03/2012 - 31/03/2012
01/04/2012 - 30/04/2012
01/05/2012 - 31/05/2012
01/06/2012 - 30/06/2012
01/07/2012 - 31/07/2012
01/08/2012 - 31/08/2012
01/09/2012 - 30/09/2012
01/10/2012 - 31/10/2012
01/11/2012 - 30/11/2012
01/12/2012 - 31/12/2012
01/01/2013 - 31/01/2013
01/02/2013 - 28/02/2013
01/03/2013 - 31/03/2013
01/04/2013 - 30/04/2013
01/05/2013 - 31/05/2013
01/06/2013 - 31/06/2013
01/07/2013 - 31/07/2013
01/08/2013 - 31/08/2013
01/09/2013 - 30/09/2013
01/10/2013 - 31/10/2013
01/11/2013 - 30/11/2013
01/12/2013 - 31/12/2013
01/01/2014 - 31/01/2014
01/02/2014 - 28/02/2014
01/03/2014 - 31/03/2014
01/04/2014 - 30/04/2014
01/05/2014 - 31/05/2014
01/06/2014 - 31/06/2014
01/07/2014 - 31/07/2014
01/08/2014 - 31/08/2014
01/09/2014 - 31/09/2014
01/10/2014 - 31/10/2014
01/11/2014 - 30/11/2014
01/12/2014 - 31/12/2014
01/01/2015 - 31/01/2015
01/02/2015 - 28/02/2015
01/03/2015 - 31/03/2015
01/04/2015 - 30/04/2015
01/05/2015 - 31/05/2015
01/06/2015 - 30/06/2015
01/07/2015 - 31/07/2015
01/08/2015 - 31/08/2015
01/09/2015 - 30/09/2015
01/10/2015 - 31/10/2015
01/11/2015 - 31/11/2015
01/12/2015 - 31/12/2015
01/01/2016 - 31/01/2016
01/022016 - 28/02/2016
01/03/2016 - 31/03/2016
01/04/2016 - 31/04/2016
01/05/2016 - 31/05/2016
01/06/2016 - 30/06/2016
01/07/2016 - 31/07/2016
01/08/2016 - 31/08/2016
01/09/2016 - 31/09/2016
01/10/2016 - 31/10/2016
01/11/2016 - 31/11/2016
01/12/2016 - 31/12/2016
01/01/2017 - 31/01/2017
01/02/2017 - 28/02/2017
01/03/2017 - 31/03/2017
01/04/2017 - 30/04/2017
01/05/2017 - 31/05/2017
01/06/2017 - 30/06/2017
01/07/2017 - 31/07/2017
01/08/2017 - 31/08/2017
01/09/2017 - 30/09/2017
01/10/2017 - 31/10/2017
01/11/2017 - 30/11/2017
01/12/2017 - 31/12/2017
01/01/2018 - 31/01/2018
01/02/2018 - 28/02/2018
01/03/2018 - 31/03/2018
01/04/2018 - 30/04/2018
01/05/2018 - 31/05/2018
01/06/2018 - 30/06/2018
01/07/2018 - 31/07/2018
01/08/2018 - 31/08/2018
01/09/2018 - 30/09/2018
01/10/2018 - 31/10/2018
01/11/2018 - 30/11/2018
01/12/2018 - 31/12/2018
01/01/2019 - 31/01/2019
01/02/2019 - 28/02/2019
01/03/2019 - 31/03/2019
01/04/2019 - 30/04/2019
01/05/2019 - 31/05/2019
01/06/2019 - 30/06/2019
01/07/2019 - 31/07/2019
01/08/2019 - 31/08/2019
01/09/2019 - 30/09/2019
01/10/2019 - 31/10/2019
01/11/2019 - 30/11/2019
01/12/2019 - 31/12/2019
01/01/2020 - 31/01/2020
01/02/2020 - 29/02/2020
01/03/2020 - 31/03/2020
01/04/2020 - 31/04/2020
01/05/2020 - 31/05/2020
01/06/2020 - 31/06/2020
01/07/2020 - 31/07/2020
01/08/2020 - 31/08/2020
01/09/2020 - 30/09/2020
01/10/2020 - 31/10/2020
01/11/2020 - 30/11/2020
01/12/2020 - 31/12/2020
01/01/2021 - 31/01/2021
01/02/2021 - 28/02/2021
01/03/2021 - 31/03/2021
01/04/2021 - 30/04/2021
01/05/2021 - 31/05/2021
01/06/2021 - 30/06/2021
01/07/2021 - 31/07/2021
01/08/2021 - 31/08/2021
01/09/2021 - 30/09/2021
01/10/2021 - 31/10/2021
01/11/2021 - 30/11/2021
01/12/2021 - 31/12/2021
01/01/2022 - 31/01/2022
01/02/2022 - 28/02/2022
01/03/2022 - 31/03/2022
01/04/2022 - 30/04/2022
01/05/2022 - 30/05/2022
01/06/2022 - 31/06/2022
01/07/2022 - 31/07/2022
01/08/2022 - 31/08/2022
01/09/2022 - 30/09/2022
01/10/2022 - 31/10/2022
01/11/2021 - 31/11/2021
01/12/2022 - 31/12/2022
01/01/2023 - 31/01/2023
01/02/2023 - 28/02/2023
01/03/2023 - 31/03/2023
01/04/2023 - 30/04/2023
01/08/2023 - 31/08/2023
01/11/2023 - 31/11/2023

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

So - Wednesday shop then the garden. The rockery is now all plotted out (details later), the lemon balm dug up (and three large clumps reserved for the low wall in the front), two of the fake blackcurrant plants which were rooted under the main bush (which will be going, it's too big and in the wrong place) dug up and in pots so we can plant them up at the top (the insects love it!), half the rocks removed from the rockery ready to be reused in other structures, and another load of duckweed removed from pools. A lot of work and everything will hurt tomorrow (again), but it's all coming together beautifully. There will be photos!

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

[sigh] Woken up by back pain, probably due to all the walking/bending/hauling 60 litre sacks of compost yesterday. Oh joy. Knew that by the time the painkillers worked there was no point trying to get back to sleep, so I got up at 7.30. Still, I've managed to repot the physocarpus (I do like that name! It rolls off the tongue and sounds like some kind of mutant fish...) and lifted a large root of jasmine from the meadow, and from the patio the rogue tolmiea (an escapee from Dave next door's), and another escapee whose name I don't know: anyone recognise it?

Edit: Lutra thinks it's a strawberry begonia, and I do believe she's right!

After lunch I'll have a go at digging up the pulmonaria (also an escapee!) which is part of the design for the front garden. They can all happily sit in pots until we can get the front organised (starting next month). It's going to look very pretty (and be a bee and butterfly paradise) out there by the time we've finished!

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Monday, July 29, 2013

Kim arrived just after 10 and off we headed to the Almondsbury Garden Centre - via Anita's Garden Centre which we spotted on the way. Dived in for a quick look - and found two of the plants I need for the front! At very reasonable prices, about half of what I've seen them at the larger centres (similar plants I mean, as finding the exact ones is proving near impossible). So I now have a choisya ternata (bright yellow foliage with green accents) and a deep-purple-leaved wiegela. Very pleased.

It thundered on the way to Almondsbury, absolutely bucketing it down, but once we got there we were very lucky: the rain stopped and held off until we were on our way back. And I was able to get nearly everything I went for - although they had a sign for the cornus I want for the front (Midwinter Fire, a dwarf variety that only gets to about 4 ft high) there were no plants, and none at their other 2 centres either (member of staff very kindly phoned around for me). However, they should be getting some in in the autumn, so I'll check next time I go for Feather's food. (I've moved her onto the large weaner rats now, the small ones are too small for her). Picked up pottng compost on special (three for £10), crickets for Rosa, and a beautiful Physocarpus that I simply couldn't resist.

It thundered again on the way back - and really really stormed late this afternoon, enough to have Kai commenting on it, but it's stopped now and the air feels much cooler and fresher. I've repotted the myrtle and will make a start on the rest of the fiddly stuff tomorrow...

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Sunday, July 28, 2013

Usual Sunday, with added WEATHER. Lots and lots and LOTS of WEATHER. Still, all the pools are now completely full, as are the waterbutts, the watering cans and the soil. Can't really complain.

And there's due to be more tomorrow - an awful lot more. Wall to wall thunderstorms, if the Met Office site is to be believed. Oh joy...

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Saturday, July 27, 2013

I'm losing days again...

Yesterday Ken and I cleared the frewtnog pool of silt and pulled up the grass and honeysuckle around it before refilling it. I have some of the extremely vigorous pondweed from Roeg's Pool in quarantine in a bowl (we have the usual duckweed incursion) to go in the frewtnog pool when I'm sure it's clear. After dinner we watched The Iron Giant (finally: I read the book years ago and bought the dvd for £3 at Sainsbug's last week) - wonderful film!

And then it was the last episode of Transformers Prime: Beast Hunters... It was a very satisfying finale, no cliffhanger, just a few loose ends to be addressed in the forthcoming film Predacons Rising, due out in October in the US.

Today, K&K have gone to the Pilgrim's Way pageant - although it's now started raining (the onset of the threatened storms) so I expect them back soonish. Tyjer is most unhappy. He's loved the sunny weather - now mum's made it rain...

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Bay tree gone. Going to wait a while and consider options before we try to do anything with the space!



Wednesday, July 24, 2013

I'd hoped for a lie in, but the house over the road is having something done - something that involves an awful lot of noise. And at 8.16 am a whacking great delivery truck pulls up to unload more supplies...

[sigh] So I got up and went into town - we needed SodaStream supplies anyway, and more suet treats for the birds. And the Wed market was on outside St Nicks: bought a wonderful Cheddar cheese plait loaf for our lunch, a bag of organic potatoes, and some absolutely delicious unpasteurised Cheddar from Greens of Glastonbury.

This afternoon Ken managed to dig up the bay tree stump while Kai and I got the netting set up for the peas later in the year (going to try an October sowing and see what happens!) Needless to say the legs are aching, and I caught the sun. Going a nice brown colour I am!

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

So there I am, having finally managed to drop off in the ridiculous heat of last night, when I'm woken at 3.27 am by a dream of Soundwave ordering the Nemesis to barrage the house with fusion cannon blasts - only to find the most amazing storm happening outside. I've seen some thunderstorms in my time but that was just phenomenal. Almost constant purple sheet lightning, thunder that rattled the windows (yes, literally) and torrential rain. And the most delicious coolness rolling in through the wide open windows.

... bliss...

Main waterbutt completely full this morning: Kai's filled up the greenhouse one for me (it collects from a much smaller area of roof and one storm will only half fill it), and chucked a couple of watering cans full into Roeg's Pool (which had half-filled too overnight), and I've done a successful gastropod hunt up at the veg bed. And it's so much cooler - even with the humidity. Of course, this being the UK, if it's not one thing it's another...



Blogger GoodTwin said...

And over here, we had not a drop of rain at all. Stiflingly hot today in the office although it's slightly better tonight.
Our grass looks like straw and I want rain...

10:14 pm  
Blogger Joules *Dances with Haddock* Taylor said...

Ah, it was fantastic! Would have been terrifying if it hadn't been so exhilarating!
Symps though. Fingers crossed you get some on Thurs - I think the whole country is due some then.

10:42 pm  
Blogger GoodTwin said...

And tomorrow is the one day we could really do without it - the office finally moves and I could do without everything getting wet...

10:25 pm  

Monday, July 22, 2013

Oooray! The ivy pile is now gone (except for the heavy logs that are up against the wall to provide wildlife habitats). I can now move my goji berry when the weather is a little less fierce.



Sunday, July 21, 2013

I took yesterday off! It was nice.

The high - low - point of today was me sitting here proof-reading when suddenly all the power went off. Just in our house. It took over an hour but we eventually found the kitchen socket that usually runs the kettle (and the vacuum cleaner) was shorting out the whole house when the switch was flicked. [sigh] The whole house needs rewiring really but we can't afford it.



Friday, July 19, 2013

First marrow of the year (and second cucumber. And a handful of mixed veg to go with yesterday's pick to have with dinner tonight).

Working on next Poppy...

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Blogger GoodTwin said...

(sings...) (Ooooh! What a beauty!), I've never seen one as big as that before (...)

7:44 am  
Blogger Joules *Dances with Haddock* Taylor said...


5:04 pm  

Thursday, July 18, 2013

High point of today - got my hair cut. Quite drastically: he's taken off about two and a half inches all over. It looks and feels great - sooo much cooler in this heat!

We aren't quite sure what he was doing - yoga or worshipping the TV - but it looks good...

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Family. (Tf: P Soundwaves, for those who haven't been paying attention).



Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Sorry these posts are short and mostly consist of jobs finished. It's hectic and hot and we're trying to get everything done as quickly as we can.

K&K burned some more of the ivy pile this evening - looks like only one more, at most two, and it'll all be gone! The incinerator is really efficient and there's hardly any smoke (though that's probably because everything is so dry).

And Ken finished my path. It's terrific, really stable and should last for years.

It looks like blogger's done away with the need to put in a title!



Monday, July 15, 2013

Kai and I went to see Pacific Rim.

Absolutely loved it!

Yes, predictable, a little clichéd, but the comic moments were great, the cgi utterly awesome, the fights amazing, and the kaiju had magnificent biolights! The music is terrific too.

A 'must have'. Hopefully for Yule.



Sunday, July 14, 2013


Yesterday was busy, of course. Bused out to Hurrans: couldn't find the plants we're looking for for the front, but they were having a half price sale: picked up the heuchera that was on my list (the pewter coloured one) and a heucharilla (hybrid of heachera and tiarella, I think) that looks pretty and changes colour through the year. So my heuchera bed is just about finished. I'd still like a bronze one, but I can certainly live with it for now!

(Heucheras in 7.30 am sun this morning with obligatory cat... Will get better pic when the light isn't so bright.)

By the time I got up yesterday Ken had already dug up the grass where the strawberry bed (right) and the show bed (left) are being expanded. Today he's bedded in half the stones that are making up the path (photo when it's finished).

The incinerator works really well. This is the ivy pile after one evening's fire (pile did reach the top of the wall. That wall is over 8' high...) It's going to take several more fires to get rid of it all, and we may not be able to before this heatwave eases and it rains, but we'll see how we go.

Also bought half price peppermint and apple mint plants, which are now beside the greenhouse where the lawn chamomile was failing to thrive. (Will plant it elsewhere.) To finish it off I've planted one of the cat mint plants I managed to grow from seed (with an upturned hanging basket cage over it to protect the roots!). Tyjer was very happy...

We watched The Constant Gardener on Friday night (picked it up cheap at St Pete's Hospice charity shop. Wonderful film. But scary.

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Friday, July 12, 2013

And it's officially a heatwave!

My poor garden... Just as well grass is resilient as at the moment the lawn looks like straw. I'm using the hose at half-pressure to get water directly to the roots every two days in the veg garden, which seems to be working well, and of course the sun is bringing everything on (we're self-sufficient in courgettes at the moment, and the sweetcorn is coming on a treat). This morning I planted the melons out into the cold frame (between us Kai and I managed to repair the lid that the fox broke) and Ken is filling the greenhouse waterbutt from the main one (which actually needs rinsing out as there's a lot of silt from the roof at the bottom - good timing neh? Not overly keen on a lot of garden work in this heat but it's good exercise...

Pacific Rim is on at the Showcase at the moment - planning for Kai and I to go watch it next week.

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Blogger GoodTwin said...

Our grass is looking decidedly unhealthy but it's had wabbits nibbling away at it. I could hire them out as lawnmowers, they're so efficient (and provide their own fertilizer) :)

11:09 pm  
Blogger Joules *Dances with Haddock* Taylor said...

Uh, riiiight...
It's horrible here, and it doesn't help that Ken's been levelling out dippy areas with sods he's cut from where beds are being extended. They didn't have time to get properly rooted before the dry weather, and I'm not wasting water on grass. It'll be back - it always is.

11:46 pm  

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Busy couple of days. The conifer is dug up, the bay tree is getting closer to being gone, the ivy tree stump has been moved, I've picked, shelled, blanched and frozen the first batch of peas, and we have home grown courgettes for dinner tomorrow (with tomatoes as a side dish to pork chops). And I now have a large heap of very nice rocks to use in the rockery or to make paths or stepping stones up at the veg bed.

I've also ordered a garden incinerator from ebay - not hugely expensive and an investment. We have to get rid of the prunings and the ivy somehow and bonfires are no longer an option now we have the strawberry bed. It should arrive by the weekend: that massive pile of dead ivy between the elder and the choisya could be gone by Monday!

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Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Sometimes I think I have strange tastes. But I like daft /cute things. Sometimes.
egg whisk

Yes, it's an eggwhisk.

No, it's not a potato, it's a potato brush (for cleaning potatoes) made to look like one.

Marbles, for Lutra. 'Cause she likes 'em. A lot.



Blogger Lutra said...

Oooooooh...! Shiny!

2:08 pm  

Monday, July 08, 2013

Up early again, the last of my seedlings in the ground (three marrows) and spring onions, radishes and beetroot seeds planted. And I made a start on clearing the dead buddleia branches from behind the shed. Then it got too hot.

As you can see, the 'rockery' is a complete mess: it's been completely invaded by grass (a lot of which I've poisoned, hence the dead patches). We're going to be stripping everything (well, not the red acer, juniper or paeony), taking out all the rocks and redesigning the whole thing - but I'm now wondering if putting in something edible in hte bit outside the patio doors might be an option. It's a large space. Then again, it's a slope, which might make it tricky... Going to have a think about that.

Taken from the hall window.

Taken from the ground.

I've lifted my little silver pink and light green acer, the one we bought in Wells, from the slope at the top (it was suffering in the heat - it's very dry up there) and it's now recovering in a pot out of the sun. It will be going in fairly close to the red acer next to Roeg's Pool (which you can't see here as it's hidden by grass). I'm very tempted to try more irises - one of my favourite flowers - but they are very prone to 'pod attacks... Will have to think about that...

Anyway - there's an enormous amount to get done, and there's no way we can do it all this year. Be good to make a start, clearing the ground and maybe stacking rocks to make little 'crags' for the alpines and succulents that were the original plan. It's kind of nice to have such a parchment to work on.

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Sunday, July 07, 2013

Hot. Very very hot. Too hot to do much, especially after getting even hotter doing the usual Sunday shop.

And the heatwave is due to continue all this week.

... I need another waterbutt...



Saturday, July 06, 2013

So, today was a bit...

Flare: [glomps] Afternoon! Good day? Oh - bear with me a mo - was diggingup a tree. Nearly there, then I can take my boots off and cool down a bit.
Lutra: [bg] 'Don't mind me, just digging up a tree'
LOL! Well, it's only a small tree - goat willow, about 13 ft high but only 3 - 4 inch diamter triunk. And shallow roots. Only took me half an hour. It's behind the shed, and I've been asking Ken to do it for 3 years - finally decided if I wanted it done I'd have to do it myself.

Hurting now though. Going to be sore in the morning...

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Friday, July 05, 2013

The Poppy Tales 

Eleventh part of New World 2 - Success - now posted over at The Poppy Tales (link above).


Physio yesterday was very pleased with progress - next appointment is middle of August.

I popped into the cheap place while I was up at Broadwalk (had to go in to get bird food at Wlkinson's) and sudden Shockwave. The one I saw and regretted not buying a while ago and haven't seen since. Still half price. So grabbed him. He's put away for - dunno, Mothering Sunday?

They also had Bayscream (RotF) at half price so I got him too...

As with the cometary protoform, not the prettiest, but it's good to have a full sized one.

Garden work shortly...

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Thursday, July 04, 2013


Paging through ebay the other day (I'm hoping to find a complete Depth Charge at an affordable price) I found a Jetstorm - for 99p plus p&p.

I liked Jetstorm. Starscream's aerial agility and Knock Out-esque voice and snark - heh, what's not to like? And although the figure can't hope to have the elegance of the cgi, it's still pretty good. So I got him.

He arrived today. He's missing his tailfins and missiles (the latter I don't care, the former, would have been nice to have been warned) but otherwise he's good.

BM Jetstorm
BM Jetstorm
BM Jetstorm face

He has the red plastic back of head feature to allow the light to make his eyes shine - always a nice touch.

This is what wiki has to say about Jetstorm:

Raving, sarcastic and all around thorough villain, the Vehicon Jetstorm always had something to say with a very vicious snap to it. He controls the Aero-Drones. During the first season of Beast Machines, Blackarachnia uncovered that he was actually Silverbolt, his spark moved into a new body. Upon returning to a Maximal form, Silverbolt regretted being changed back as he loved the freedom from the shackles of his normally intense nobility that that form brought. He also experienced intense guilt due to the acts he had committed as Jetstorm.

He'll hang on my lefthand speaker bracket, opposite my Bayverse satellite Soundwave, which will make a nice symmetry. Altogether chuffed!

Next!Poppy now on page four. Should be posted tonight.

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Wednesday, July 03, 2013

I blinked, and there was Wednesday receding into the distance...

But we got a lot done. Usual Wednesday shopping, then Ken finished the wall! It's done! This is great!

I've also been cleaning out cupboards and drawers, trying to get rid of clutter. Though that's a bit like painting the Forth Bridge. Kitchen is next.

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Blogger GoodTwin said...

hee, spot the red dot... :)

I have had an incredibly stressful day!

10:56 pm  
Blogger Joules *Dances with Haddock* Taylor said...

[grump] It's the only way I can get the damned app to accept a post...
What happened?

11:07 pm  
Blogger GoodTwin said...

Boss winding me up, internet going down (couldn't get on for most of the evening) - just the usual things. Just seemed to be more frustrating than usual; I'm probably hormonal :)

7:50 am  
Blogger Joules *Dances with Haddock* Taylor said...

... symps...

1:27 pm  

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Why am I suddenly unable to post without filling in this field? What the hell have blogger done NOW? 

Working on next!Poppy and as usual skyping with Lutra. Her comment on reading about the bad guys:

Lutra: they should all die in a volcano.
Flare: LOL! I'll see what I can arrange. Though a volcano is a bit quick.
An apparently inactive volcano, that slowly comes to life, the lava and heat creeping up on them incrementally. but they can't leave as they're trapped by rocks...
... you've got this all worked out, haven't you?
[smug] You've taught me well.


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