I would like to start by correcting the impression I might have given in my previous post that when I acted as a polling clerk it was a volunteering role; it wasn't, I got paid for it! The standard rate for poll clerking is £150.00 for the day - which sounds a lot, but as we are there for 16 hours; it works out as just under 10.00 per hour - not that much, really. The Presiding Officer role pays twice that amount, but I wouldn't want the responsibility so I've always gone for the poll clerk role. We also get paid for training. Right, now I've cleared that up this is what I've been up to since my last post.
I managed to swim 42 laps in the allotted time on Tuesday but that was partly because there were fewer people in the lane; also several got out of the pool leaving me the only swimmer in my lane for the last ten minutes of the swim - yay! Anyway, goal achieved and let's hope I can continue to keep it up.
Wednesday was a beautiful day for walking. It was overcast, but by mid morning the sun came out and the breeze turned from chilly to cool. There were 13 of us on the walk I led; 7 miles in length. It was very good to walk in a group again and catch up with a couple of walkers I know well. Everyone enjoyed the walk which is always good to know! In the afternoon I went to Rushden for a rummage in the Salvation Army shop which is among one of my favourites. I bought a wooden darning mushroom for 50p; something I've been looking out for for a while, a book and a small heart shaped cushion for 75p. I also picked up a yellow wooden ampersand sign for my daughter (the colour scheme in her living room is yellow, white and grey) and that was it. No clothes! Rummaging urge satisfied I returned home and made dinner. We watched The Great British Sewing Bee in the evening. I think Serena could be the winner but there's a way to go yet. Esme's (one of the judges) necklaces get madder each week. Last week there were pots of coloured paint hanging around her neck but she always looks so fabulous. I wonder if she makes her own clothes?
I enjoyed listening to 'The Adventures of Miss Barbara Pym' on BBC R4's 'Book of the Week' which I caught up with this week. I didn't realise she lived in the same part of London where I grew up for many years; I wondered if there was a blue plaque outside her house. The next time I go to London, I'll check it out. It made me want to re-read her books and as I had a collection of her books I started with her first novel; 'Some Tame Gazelle'.
All jewellery charity shopped.
My first wearing of white jeans this year. Jeans by Next; charity shopped; top by M&S bought in Keech Hospice shop in Kempston last week and shoes by Sainsbury's retail in their sale. I wore a jacket when I went out as it wasn't warm enough to go without one.
In the afternoon, after putting a wash on, I went into to town to run a couple of errands and whilst I was there had a look in a couple of charity shops for some more Barbara Pym books. I was missing four to make up the complete collection. I didn't find any in the charity shops but I did go to our local independent second hand bookshop. We have a Waterstones and WHSmith but both sell new books. The independent bookshop had moved to new premises just before the first lockdown (bad timing) which I hadn't visited before. It was very spacious with several sofas and chairs to sit and read in. I found one Barbara Pym book and another green Virago to add to my collection; as well as a natural history book and a crime book by Denise Mina which I hadn't read. I was very satisfied with my purchases and only have 4 more Barbara Pym books to track down now...
Saturday was wet but luckily not cold. We've had about a months rainfall in the past couple of days. The garden needed it but enough already! I had no plans made for Saturday so I went for a rummage to Newport Pagnell where I haven't been since before Christmas. I found a Fred Vargas book; two brooches for 50p each; and a yellow dress from the 2.00 rail in The Willen Hospice Shop. I also bought a necklace in the RSPCA shop. A new charity shop had opened in Newport Pagnell; another Keech Hospice shop; it sold furniture and bric a brac with books upstairs. No Barbara Pym books unfortunately.
When I got back from my rummage I made a cauliflower, chickpea and spinach curry and baked a Victoria sponge cake. I've never made a vegetarian curry before only vegetarian stir fries. It turned out very well and I enjoyed it. I have several more vegetarian recipes to try out. I like vegetarian food as I don't eat very much meat and as my daughter has now become a vegan that's even more incentive to make more vegetarian dishes. OH, son and grandsons all remain meat addicts.
Sunday's outfit. Everything charity shopped. Trousers by Et Vous; kimono; no label. Can't remember where I got either of them from. The trousers were too snug in the waist and have been re-donated.
In the third charity shop (Willen Hospice Shop - we passed the actual Willen Hospice on our walk)) I saw this sideboard. I thought it looked very much in the 'Arts and Crafts' style and I loved it. It was also reduced from £85.00 to £60.00, so that was a bonus although the delivery was expensive. It was delivered on Thursday morning and my old sideboard was donated in exchange and taken away. I'm so pleased with it.
The iris is almost there (top left); last years dimorphotheca (another type of osteospermum - top right). A sweet william (bottom left); we have another potful that are just about to bloom as well; the pansies in the planter just keep on going.
It's an old Bentley, I think and it was blowing bubbles out of its rear end. Good luck to Tony and Katherine whoever you maybe!