98; Michael Palin’s diaries.


This photo is rather blurry I’m afraid. I took this from my seat in the Milton Keynes theatre of this onstage prop of Michael Palin’s diaries. They were actually huge, rather bigger than Michael himself if I remember rightly.

The evening consisted of Michael talking about the many and various projects he’s done, illustrated by him reading from his diaries and film clips from Python and his travel programmes. It was a relaxed and entertaining evening though I was getting over a cold and was trying not to cough, which of course makes it worse!

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82; Quaker library book


I’m on the library committee for my local Quaker Meeting and we are putting our book stock onto an online catalogue site called Librarything.

Its quite a long job as we have around 900 books but we’ve nearly finished.

A previous cataloging system had numbered each book at the top right of each front page and I managed to spot number 82. The red spot indicates the book’s been added to Librarything.



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80; Jules Verne novel


Yup, Around the World in Eighty Days. A book I have a vague memory of reading. The story has become part of our culture, inspiring the travel series by Michael Palin and I seem to remember a children’s cartoon series too.

Wasn’t there a film with Steve Coogan in? Didn’t see it, I wonder if it was any good?

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66: Manrope knot


Before Christmas Mum had a turn out of her loft. She found stuff up there that she had totally forgotten about, including her wedding dress , the bridesmaid dress she wore to my aunt’s wedding, wigs and clothes worn in various plays, and boxes of books and memorabilia that my Dad had collected among other things.

My Dad used to be a scout and among his books we found this copy of Knots, Bends, Splices by Captain Jutsum.


It’s not in great condition, but interesting nonetheless . My 66 is the first figure demonstrating a manrope knot.

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50: Charlie and the chocolate factory gates

  Last year Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl celebrated its 50th birthday, which these gates at the museum commemorate.

I visited last year in the last week of the summer holiday with my daughter and her family. This is Niamh posing in front of the gates with her doll Rosie who accompanied us on the trip.

Makes for a spectacular 50!

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About me

Erin over at Musings of a so-called Shutterbug spotted this list of questions in a blog she follows and had a go at answering them.
As I haven’t travelled anywhere recently and the number project has got more difficult now I’ve reached the 30s I thought I’d have a go too, so here goes:

Four names people call me other than my real name.

Chris. This last from people who mishear my name, my father in law and also oddly, my ex fiancĂ©’s father.

Four jobs I’ve had other than my current one.

All along the same lines, unsurprisingly :
Library trainee at Kings Lynn,
summer library job at Ealing Central,
bookshop assistant at Cranfield bookshop,
stopgap librarian at the Royal Latin Grammar school, Buckingham.

Four films I’ve watched more than once.

Dirty Dancing,
Bernard and the Genie,
You’ve Got Mail,
The Wedding Singer.
Could watch all of these again and again.

Four books I’d recommend.

Only four? Cripes, how to choose? The first three are my favourite books, the fourth is the book that I’ve most recently recommended to someone.
Life after Life by Kate Atkinson
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffernegger
Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien
Instructions For a Heatwave by Maggie O’Farrell

Four places I’ve lived.

and Watton, both in Norfolk,
Ealing, west London,
Aylesbury , Bucks.

Four places I’ve been.

Once again, how to choose?
Aix-en-Provence, France,
Canada, lots of places in Canada, um, let’s pick Vancouver,
lots of places in Australia, I’ll pick Palm Cove in Queensland,
another favourite place closer to home is Fowey, Cornwall.

Four places I wouldn’t mind being right now.

Apart from those places mentioned in the last question,
Victoria BC,
Adelaide Australia,both places I’ve been where I feel really comfortable ,
San Francisco, as somewhere I have yet to explore,
and anywhere else warmer than here right now.

Four things I won’t eat.

grapefruit ,
never fancied sushi ,
Breakfast, apart from porridge or something else that slips down easily, like poached eggs. I have little appetite in the morning.

Four of my favourite foods.

tomatoes ,
ripe peaches,
coffee cake, especially made with Delia Smith’s mousseline.

Four TV programmes I watch.

and Home and Away are the only soaps I watch.
The Great British Bake Off,
Only Connect.

Four things I’m looking forward to in the next year.

The summer, same as every year!
Singing with Rock Choir at St Albans Abbey and at the 10th birthday shindig at Birmingham,
Seeing The Jersey Boys at MK theatre with my son in law Neal,
Going to The Stables Wavendon for concerts, Seth Lakeman soon, later possibly Renaissance and Thea Gilmore.

Four things I’m always saying.

Shh, Popmaster’s on!
Anyone want a drink?
Anyone else cold, or just me?
Alan! Alan! Alan! (Marmot – like, did you watch that animal speaking programme? What was it called?)

Have a go at this too if you like. It took some thought to come up with the answers.

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