Three weeks away - but will it be a holiday?

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Me hard at work here in Wales.

See below for just a few of the photographs we have taken this week (this three week - eventually) whilst over here.

Items of interest

Street brawls (link)

Sunday Times.
This is an alarming view of a brutal society evolving amongst (mainly) young men. The social networks are (sort of) blamed for providing the vehicle for such appalling behaviour, but the real aim of the piece has been to lambast the advertisors for the financial support to each video clip - found on a variety of sites [see article for more details]. 

More stuff like this when I see it ...

Electronic Smog

Independant 29th July 2007

Electrical fields from computers, televisions and other everyday equipment can give people asthma, influenza and other respiratory diseases - suggests Geoffrey Lean of the Independant.

I did think that he was just reporting on a recenlty published report (see article) but reseach finds him at it last year too - see this

More stuff like this when I see it ...


Previous Holidays

USA - 2006

New Orleans

New York


Pictures from Wales 
- Flickr -

Bobbies on the beat:


Quilts in the Uni of Wales


This is Toffee - Rosies new kitten - 12 weeks old and already bringing in live animals!


On walk down to village from
Ty Llwyd


 The view from our bedroom window at Ty Llwyd. That's the sea just under the sky!


Sharon, hard at work in the new Welsh call centre


Rosie and Sharon, cold but patient.


BB - cock of the coop


Welsh cakes cooking - in a shop in Cardigan



Ty Mawr Menu 3/9/7

View on my walk to the village on Thursday

 A tiny Shrew - just seen (hardly moved) in the garden. See video in middle of Saturday blog.

 Cat and Mouse?
Click to see larger

This is one of the colourful houses to be found around the harbour at Aberaeron. This particualr one is a B & B

Here is Betz, who joined us on Saturday, posing in the sunshine.



L/H and R/H posting opportunties in Aberystwyth



I loved the contrast of colours in this shot of a chimney donw by llanon church


This is Sharon filming shadows. she doesn't like the picture - but hey - she didn't take it ...


This is a view from the River Aeron - out towards the sea - that's the main road bridge ..

This picture of our afternoon tea at Tides in Aberystwyth has been 'messed' with for no reason other than I had the time

Side bar bottom bit


Day one

We'd agreed to set off by 9.00am a the latest - but if we could get away earlier, that we would stop for a bacon sandwich en-route. As we managed to get away at 8.50am (I'd lost my wallet - so 8.30am became a distant possibility) we stopped at the Motor Man cafe up the A62 just outside Marsden. This was delicious.

We'd agreed to meet Steven and Rosie in Lampeter because it was the Lampeter food festival. Going to Llanon first would have wasted time, so although Lampeter was slightly further it made sense to meet them there. Luckily, they'd lost their new kitten, Toffee, just before setting off, so the delays we had en-route (mainly at Newtown) allowed us to arrive within 10 minutes of each other.

 Ty Llwyd

When we finally got to Ty Llwyd, I was worn out.

I've had a really busy week and just after lunch on Friday I had to push the seat back and say "no more". I had spent the morning writing drivel and was falling asleep on the chair. So the rest of the day was spent packing and preparing for our trip to Wales. We went to Endogans with Karen and Dave (and Betz) that evening, so that was nice - but I was till tired when I woke up on Saturday.

Luckily, Rosie was on top of the evening meal (and cakes on arrival back at the house), so the evening was fairly relaxing. About 9.00pm we went into Aberaeron to see the festival fireworks. No one seemed to know at what time the fireworks would be set off and as it was pouring down (again) we had to visit a pub to wait until it happened. They were eventually very good and lasted fifteen minutes.


When we got back, we had a cup of tea and went to bed just before the 75 rally cars begun to go past the house on a local midnight rally! Noisy?  Yes!

Day 2

A lie in! Fabulous. I can't usually manage one of those, but after an early moring visit (!) I managed a sleep in until 9.00am which is unheard of. The sun was (is) shining, breakfast came (delicious - fresh eggs!) and went and the papers are at my feet. More later - if anything happens. Well luckily, nothing happened. It remained a supurbly relaxing day with sunshine and (eventually) shorts!

We moved the chicken run, which had four chicks and mum in it, into the main chicken area (where another six hens and one cockeral run). This was so that mum could rejoin the other adults now that the chicks are six weeks old. It took all four of us to move the heavy structure but who cared - we were in the sunshine!

Day 3

Today - Monday, is a work day. Sadly. I still have to catch up with work I'd bidded for but which was ordered later than anticipated. Having said that, I'm sat in Rosie's conservatory, the sun is shining and I'm about to change into my shorts and go outside. Tonight, we're going to a pig roast in Aberaeron.

The pig roast was fine. It was a lovely sunny evening to begin with but a bitterly cold evening in the end. Two bands played, while a local DJ interspersed. Sharon couldn't cope with the fact that EVERYTHING was in Welsh - including the bands. AND,that we recognised none of the tunes. Still a good time was had by all - although we were frustrated by having to leave our booze in the car (unlike others who had managed to sneak some in). The 'roast' wasn't visible to many but the pork butties were delightful.

Day 4

More work today - but I can't complain, the situation is SO relaxed (I didn't get up until after 9.00am and didn't start my PC work until 10.30am - which is BRILLIANT). I'm finishing a piece on m-Learning for an Ali Close project. Then it's back onto my W.I. project.

I should be able to wind back a lot after today.

We're off to Monachty Mansion tonight for a garden party recital.

This estate has a fascinating history. We know this because the play – which took place on the back of truck, was all about the founding of AberaeronHarbour and the families behind it. This time it was all in English, so we got a much better understanding of what was going on.


The garden party itself was nice – with fee refreshments being offered all night. The best was a local cheese with peppers on dry bread – really nice. I’d have to ask Rosie what it was called though – I can’t remember (can’t pronounce it).


Day 5

Up late again (I must be on holiday) and we all had a relaxed late breakfast before setting off for Aberystwyth to buy our train tickets for the trip to London (two weeks today).

Tonight we're going to the big bash of the week - the Party in the Park with Catherin Finch and Huw Edwards (from the News on BBC - bit of a local lad apparently). We bought a table to hold all our food in Woolworths today - would you believe it: one of the legs is fitted wrongly. We've also been told that our new telly (delivered to home today) doesn't work - no power! Does anyone take a pride in their work anymore?


Day 6

Last night was brilliant night of entertainment.

We arrived about 6.45pm, just as the show was beginning with Eleri Sion walking among the crowd. Eleri is a television presenter in Wales. She was joined later by Huw Edwards of 10 o’clock news fame.  Catrin Finch and CF47 were on first and last. She was a revelation to me – I really enjoyed her music. Then there followed a series of classical singers (Meriel Andew; Gareth John,  Elon Mon Wayne, Jason Howard,) none better than Dafydd Edwards and his superb daughter Gwawr Edwards.

We took our own picnic (although all the stuff from Monday night was still available): Courgette Quiche, Seafood Pasta (crayfish tails and lobster!); mixed leaves from the garden, pate and cheeses, all followed by huge chunks of pineapple. Lovely.

Tonight we're going to a posh place to eat - can't remember the name- but I'll mention it tomorrow. Unti then, it's learning to chase the chickens and feed the dogs and cats ...

But I also went for a walk down to the village and back - in glorious sunshine.

Day 7


Last night's meal was a wallet mugging event at Ty Mawr Mansion Country House. For starters I had Seared Scallops, Cauliflower Puree and Satay Peanut Dressing (Being Mr. Picky, I'd say that the scallps were too small [@ £9.50] and the puree too runny - and WHY squirty dressing? - But the tastes were WONDERFUL): I followed to this with Fillet of Welsh Black, Chive Potato Cake, Girolles and Truffle Cream (again, the tastes were spot on but the fillet could have been slightly bigger [@£24.50] and the accompanying puree [not sure if sweet potato or carrot] was too runny). For Pudding We shared a plate of Welsh Cheese between the four of us while Sharon and I shared a Basil Pannacotta with fresh berries and raspberry syrup. (This was very green but very tasty and smooth and the berries were indeed a delight - but once again I was suspicious of the squirty dressing). All in all the food was an absolute delight but for £50 a head (inc. wine) I'm entitled to be picky, despite the amuse bouche of smoked salmon and inter-course (oo-er) sorbet. The entire evening would have been spot on if there had been any atmosphere in the house and/or if the owner/greeter hadn't been such a sour puss. See menu in sidebar - click to enlarge.


Rosie and Steven have just set off for their holiday in France and we've just returned from Cardigan - where it began to rain. So, afternoon tea in the conservatory and then I'm told we have something to do in the polly-tunnel.


Week 2 - Saturday


It's a bit quiet today. I was up at 7.15am to let the chickens, dogs and sundry lifestock out. One chicken had given her egg the high drop from her roost (silly bugger) so that was one down for today. The sheep we all laid down, so I couldn't count them (did that later - all present and correct) and the dogs were out like greyhounds (must have been bursting. Toffee, the kitten was ready to play but there was no sign of TC. He'd obviously had a sulk about Rosie and Steven not being here and had not come in all night. But he snuck back in later when we returned from Aberystwyth.


We'd gone in to Aber to pick Betony up from the station. Karen and Dave had very kindly brought her back to Wales with them and put her on the train at Welshpool. So we're back up to three again now. We did a bit of shopping and came back. We had intended lunch there at a wonderful looking Deli/Tapas bar, be we were still full from the toast and coffee we'd had on picking Betz up. So we will have a Deli sort of lunch here soon.

 Just been put in the garden feeding smaller livestock - see video.


(2) Sunday

Lovely sunny day today. Up at 6.00am to let chucks out and then  donw for paper at 8.00am. This is supposed to be a holiday!

Wales still open -Foot and Mouth hits EnglandAugust 2007

So anyway - time to wash some clothes. But the washing machine broke. I was on with preparing dinner (fresh broad beans from the garden, fresh cabbage, Ty Llwyd potatoes, farmer's market carrots and farmer's market cauliflower (oh and a roast chicken with roast farmer's market cherry tomatoes with Ty Llwyd courgette) so we had to call in the emergency plumber.

This was an animation but I'm not clear yet about how to make it show as such here ... [done it - had to upload to esnips because Flickr won't display animation].

(2) Monday

It's a bit of a mixed day today. It was pouring down at 7.00am when I let the chickens out and then, later, it became very sunny (before raining again!).

I have some bits to do for the SDELC project at NIACE - not much, but enough to detract me from my main goal this week - of finishing the Women's Institute work I'd begun the week before last, as planned.

It's red hot now - and we've had to come inside to cool off. We went into Aberaeron for lunch. Aberaeron was fine - lunch wasn't.

See MySpace Blog for details.

Time to feed the chucks ...

(2) Tuesday and Wednesday

I've been a bit slack this last two days. But then, there's not been much to report. It poured down yesterday and we went into Aberystwyth for a mooch around and some lunch. Betony needed shorts and we wanted to try the Tapas Bar/Deli on pier street.

See [ Ultra Comida ] and [ Monday 23rd April ]

I think we enjoyed this. It's a bit uncomfortable sat around the room on high stools - and the Mocha was very sweet - but I couldn't complain about the food. And Sharon didn't, so it must have been ok.

Today is much sunnier, the chucks are already in the field with the sheep. And, Sharon is doing phone interviews and I'm on with the W.I. stuff ..

The river at Llanon, just below the church and just before the se.

(2) Thursday and Friday

 It was a really great day yesterday - Thursday. We had a power cut fairly early in the day, so we decided to go out to Lampeter. It doesn't take long to 'do' Lampeter, but it was a nice outing. We had lunch in Caxton News - which has a cafe at the back. We sat outside and baked. Betz had a Tuna/Sweetcorn Panini and I had a Mozzerella, Olive and Tomato Panini - both of which were fine. We both had Mocha's too which were very good (as opposed to the very sweet affair I'd had in Aber the day before).

Sharon chose Caesar Salad. When they told me that the chicken "was cooking" I thought we'd have problems but Sharon acepted the Chicken Tikka alternative without too much problem at all. Chicken Tikka Caesar Salad!?!  There was a problem with the lettuce though - unwashed and bug-crawly! Coffee was ok.

The sun kept on shining right through the day - great.

Today, Friday and it's overcast and  vey cloudy. But the power cut is over.

(3) Saturday and Suday

Saturday, yesterday, was a brilliant day. Many reasons: I didn't turn the computer on; the weather was fabulous; we went to Tregaron (it was closed) and Aberystwyth and I just sat dangling my feet off the prom (in the sun).

We had afternoon tea! See sidebar.

Sunday - 11.28am - Betz has just got up!

(3) Monday and Tuesday

We'll call  this the last entry then. Rosie and Steven are back from their holidays and we depart for London in the morning.

We come back here to Ty Llwyd on Friday but leave for home again on Saturday - so that's it for our working holiday 2007.

I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.

Bottom Bits....

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