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Happy 55

Happy 55
Well Happy Birthday to me. My surprise Birthday trip from the good lady wife to the Philippines pretty fantastic.Part Holiday part recon it was a success. I can state categorically, no phone no wifi no TV is actually the best. Unplugged with intermittent free wifi when its needed..     So first the birthday bit, went to Bohol to Pangalo Island and stayed in the same cottage at Alona Kew White Beach as 25 years ago before I asked the good lady to marry me. Its a good job I did it back then as the photo evidence from this trip definitely puts my chances nearer to ZERO. Also Stayed in the Fox and Firefly Echo Lodge pretty awesome and lots of other places.   Well the second part of the trip worked on the LOT  surveying the best location for the cottage. Well lots of work here are a phew photos of the proceedings   One last romantic image and a  warning  to fellow travelers.   all the best for the New Year until Next...

Drinking Flying Squirrels!

Drinking Flying Squirrels!
Sitting in the Laundromat drinking Flying Squirrels would normally indicate the summer is here and I am perched in the Rocky Mountains camping, walking and frantically camering. As it happens I am not drinking Flying Squirrels and am there fore not in the Rockies. Unfortunately that non- statement, statement is the only way I can explain the last few months or more exactly, December 28th 2015 to December 28th 2016. That’s the dates between which I wrote nothing, not a word in my novel and only two post on this here Bio Blog. The fact that I can now happily contemplate Flying Squirrels is in fact a good sign. That I am blogging away with little hope of being heard is strangely calming. Oh I still occasionally give my blog address to some one on the odd occasion I peer out from the silence. You see I turned off the voices in my head. No, No, don’t picnic sorry panic; not those sort of voices. The Narrator Voice remember the one I credit with all the ramblings on this blog and the world building in the novel and the life  building in life. You know that day to day stuff that stretches out to make a life time. Together with  the general background noise of existence  and  the anxiety of reality makes for a deafening non-functioning roar. A garbled sense of conversations from the bottom of the swimming pool.  So click, you switch it all off, Yesterday & Tomorrow ™ and you do Today only Today. When the background sounds of interference and static finally ebb as they undoubtedly will if you take the proper steps, the world lazily blooms back into focus and voila!  There is room to contemplate the what if once more, the Narrator wakes up refreshed and timidly service is resumed. The trapped self once again races out into the world and reconnects the pathways and breaths a sigh of contentment.   While I was gone lots of wonderful things have happened the good Lady wife turned into a fantastic photographer Instagramer and image editor. In fact I have stolen a lot of the imagery from here photo files. see we have 500 gb each on a hard drive for our imagery. Mine fills slowly and hers at a pace, she is miraculously recording all our...

The Ghost of New Years Past

The Ghost of New Years Past
  So here we are New year 2016, Christmas is finished and I look backwards! Well that doesn’t sound right I think I don’t look too bad for an old duffer like our new dog Diego who joined us in March 2015 I in solidarity sport a set of almost magnificent whiskers. Any new year resolutions or recommendations for this year  nope the Grumpy Elf has had his editorial rights rescinded and its just me. So to follow the theme boldly set out here is Christmas present.   Here is the Tribe 2015 and yes #1 Son is 6’5″ and #1 Daughter is 5’9″ and Diego well he is shorter, I will have to admit this is the second attempt at a Family photo the first for some reason made me look like a right fat batard, there are rumors as to some sort of resolution that fixes that but apparently I can’t eat cheese, white bread, drink wine or eat curries. (So good Luck Enforcing that then.) Well 2015 was the year I started putting my name on things my Flickr and Instagram account so the Funky Nomad not so incognito and in that spirit I give you the Millennium Falcon (Sorry about that I actually mean the Millennium in the Falklands, because that’s where I was when 1999 rolled into 2000 and all the computers kept running.) With Star Wars coming round once again I thought I would have to get on that band wagon. As for music not listened to much or bought anything in the last 12 months Just classic stuff Ramones, Green Day; dookie and Getz/Byrd Jazz Samba. It also began to dawn on me how awesome the Rolling Stones are and while I was busy being  a rocker it turns out Mod stuff was pretty good as well I have to admit to Liking Paul Weller and I do have  two Specials albums. Which feels disingenuous in light of Lemmys passing. I saw the Bomber Tour and was at the No sleep till Hammersmith gigs and at one point had started embroidering the Hawkwind Spaceritual album cover on my denim jacket only got about one fifth of the way and I will have to admit to removing the Thin Lizzy ( Not sure what that was about.)   So found some negatives from personal...

Diego Adventure Dog

Diego Adventure Dog
This year there is a new member of our Tribe, a 2 and a 1/2 year old Yorkshire  Terrier called Diego. We haven’t had a dog before and my Daughter has been pleading with me for a very long time. So when a late afternoon e-mail from a work colleague popped up saying there was a free Yorkshire Terrier up for grabs my reply was in the milliseconds and Yay I was first in line and long story short a couple of days later we had a dog, I was sold at Yorkshire so I suppose its a good job he is not a Yorkshire Rottweiler or Hippo or anything else on the large side. I should have had no fear of standing or sitting on him as he pays special attention to that sort of thing and gives a good bark on most occasions however he does sneak up behind me in stealth mode when I am cooking  and is pretty used the me screaming W.T.F Diego. He now makes sure he is under the chair or kitchen table when he is sneaking about. Now I am not his actual official photographer that job I leave to  the Good Lady Wife who has an amazing amount of images of daily life recording all sorts of things, so much so that I think I am going to have to borrow a few for some articles to come. And its my own fault as I only unleash my camera when on a mission which is why my i phone 5c and Instagram has changed me reminded me there are always opportunities for outstanding images. So how was Diego going to get on camping in the Rockies? How far and how fast would his terrier legs go before someone had to carry him. Well the answer to that is a bloody long way and at a faster pace than I usually go. So he was re-christened  Diego Adventure Dog, he also masquerades as Sheriff Diego and his brave Palomino horse Winifred there is a whole song and everything to go with it, its the sort of thing that happens in our household.     Here we are at Horseshoe Lake, he has no fear of heights can jump from rocks cross streams and generally have a great time. He was most...

Recomendations From the Grumpy Elf

Recomendations From the Grumpy Elf
Well you would be a bit grumpy if someone had shoved a bell up your nose. So how did 2014 go and what’s in store for the New Year?  I am pleased to report a pretty stellar year all round many highs a few lows (Car repairs and the like just before Christmas). Many things on the Rise and a few things met  their Demise. So the plan for 2015, well there is no plan because I am still working on the list of 40 or so items from 2012 (Which I may include in a blog just to remind people how silly lists can be, or should I say how silly my lists can be). But if you were to push me I will give you this image in reply and I think that’s the plan.     Gibbous Tyke ‘The Dark Antiquarian” is getting written first four chapters are with my secret beta readers ( Kim and Hill, sorry I guess not so secret then) we are full throttle into chapters 5 to 9 and just crashed trough 25,000 words so just under a third of the way so FINISHED by the end of 2015. That is the one concrete thing I set my mind to. As for distractions no doubt. So what was I listening to? Well all sorts, Satan’s helper (sorry Santas helper)  #1 Son gave me three albums currently on the radio here in CANADA:-  Hozier / Hozier,  Milky Chance/ Sadnecessary  &  July Talk / July Talk (Santa actually picked and wrapped them put them under the tree etc on the understanding it was #1 son who was giving Dad a present not Dad.) Also three other bands have been on heavy rotation here also big air play in Canada but may not have trended high in the UK. Finally three albums from “1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.” The Grumpy Elf recommend them all. If I was to pick just one July Talk / July Talk is awesome well they are all worth the time but that ones a little bit more awsommeeemmn.  The Kongos  album suffers a bit from intermittent production but has what sounds like a washboard in there somewhere and I am all for that. And the music is great but they all have lyrics that apeal to...

Jasper AB, Canada Day

Jasper AB, Canada Day
What? Actually posting the same year  as the trip! I thought you just blogged it takes a year to distill the wisdom etc. Well yes it does but for one reason or another there are certain thing that are time sensitive, this is one of them. Having made a contact or two on my last trip I feel I have to provide the goods. I challenged myself could I still photograph a flag raising a parade etc. So I treated this like an assignment put on my photographers hat ( Yes I really do have one can’t miss it brim and all and a badge ). So I found my spots warned neighboring photographers I was going to go crazy run into the road stand in front of them sit in front of the floats and horses and run around like a headless chicken. It was a very hot day,  I crafted and generally kept going until the fireworks ended at midnight. No I didn’t get punched, yes I like the results and I think I can still do it, I could even do it for the local paper if asked and probably as a full time job. (There are more and different photos on the flickr feed but these are the ones I like the most.               To finish off a firework slide show, there is more Jasper 2014 to come and no doubt it will be something more than a photo fest. The Tribe had a fantastic day come out to Jasper next year for Canada Day, absolutely fantastic, great town,  great people. Every year we discover more and more to bring us back time and time again. (See you all at the RODEO)       THE END    ...

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