A is for…

Back last night from a weekend on the Isle of Wight visiting DH’s folks for my FIL’s big SIX OH. We left bright and early Saturday morning for the drive down to Southampton, and caught the ferry over to the island.

Saturday the weather was a bit dreary, drizzling away but we spent a nice afternoon sitting in PIL’s conservatory sipping tea. We then went for a visit to the QuayArts centre just down the road from the PIL’s. The QuayArts centre houses a shop for UK artisanal products – paintings, sculpture, jewellery, and also hold exhibitions in two dedicated spaces. It has a huge cafe, and a seminar room. I was flicking through the programme for the year and they have all sorts of wonderful musicians coming from all over the UK, as well as short courses (silversmithing caught my eye!). We then went to Arreton Barns, a mini crafts village with a glass blowing workshop, fudge shop, cafe, woodworker’s studio and a little grocers selling local organic produce. Saturday evening we went to the pub around the corner from the QuayArts centre, which had an etching of the local brewery from I think the 1700s. FIL said that some of the houses in the etching still stood – looking just as they did back then. We went for a quick detour after dinner and sure enough, the brewery with the tiled arches was still there – as well as the house on the corner – Georgian I think? It was lovely whatever period it was from.

Deuce also came with us and spent his time tearing around the PIL’s house making his funny meowing noises. Sunday morning was sunny and warm, so David & I took Deuce for a long walk around Godshill, a little touristy village with thatched homes and more crafty shops – this time more about tourist souvenirs than artisanal product. Still, the village was an interesting stop, and we visited the Model Village – a little park with miniature replicas of various buildings and places on the island.

The local pub with Pugzilla:
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And real size local pub with DH and puggy.
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Then it was time for my FIL’s bday lunch – we went to a local hotel restaurant for sunday lunch, met up with David’s grandma, and some of FIL’s friends. We ate far too much, had dessert coffee and chocolates, then went back to the PIL’s for bday cake and bubbly.

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I finished some socks – sadly not a pair. One for FIL’s bday (I gave him an IOU for the full pair later this week) and on the way home I finished the foot on my first Monkey Caw Caws. So far I have single socks for Cedar Creeks, Monkey (chestnut Indigo Moon), Monkey (Caw Caw STR), Express Lane, and FIL socks (modified Francie in Indigo Moon). To be finished are Karenina (first sock), and Neighbourhood Tunnels (first sock). I better get the cycle going so I can get some pairs together. First stop is FIL’s second sock, then the unfinished first socks, then the others.

We also brought home the PIL’s wedding gift for David & I – a gorgeous handcoloured original map from 1882 of the Isle of Wight. It was meant as a tourist map, so has helpful advice on where to go and good places to visit. Thank you S&F!!!

I was also tagged by Tapmouse for a meme “Peeps I want to know more about”.

The rules of the game get posted at the beginning. Each player answers the questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog. Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer.

1. What was I doing 10 years ago? Eek I have trouble remembering last week let alone 10 years ago! So let me see…1998… (I’m counting backwards in my head – I know where I was on the eve of the Millenium – on the banks of Sodermalm in Stockholm listening to Europe, that Swedish hard rock band (don’t laugh), singing ‘The Final Countdown’ to the final countdown of the 1900s- so everything is counted forwards or backwards from then) – I was living in London, the first part of the year at my first year of law school living in Bermondsey London, and the second half at second year of law school living with B in Brixton.

2. What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order):
-Socktopus stuff (parcelling up packages for sending, catching up with suppliers for current projects, scan an order form, lots of boring admin type things)
-finish up some typing for the longest sock
-research a few hotels for a knitting retreat
-remember to eat lunch and breakfast

3) Snacks I enjoy:
-japanese rice crackers -but only the ones that come in little flower shapes.
-toffee popcorn
-bubble milk tea (FAVE stuff, though am now out of bubbles and tea so can’t make any more myself)
-Taiwanese street snacks – though these are more like meals than snacks – shaobing, youtiao, xiaolongbao, zongzi…
-cherries. ripe dark crunchy sweet sweet sweet juicy cherries!

4) Things I would do if I were a billionaire: Wow, what a question.. the choices… I would give away chunks of it to family (paying off homes/cars) but hopefully in a way to ensure fiscal responsibility (no ferrari gifts!) and give them the freedom to live to work rather than work to live… put a chunk into some sort of trust/foundation which would invest money in NGO’s doing valuable work (eg charities, educational projects, health projects etc), put a chunk into scholarships of all sorts for educational promotion/research particularly for kids who have great potential but who also have alot going against them….and of course the selfish things – pay off the house, get a new car (our second hand car is on its last legs!) – I’d be tempted by an Aston Martin… but I guess I’d want a fuel efficient car (maybe a hybrid or electric car) that was comfy to drive and sit in and a good powerful motor! DH would be able to see if he wanted to leave his job to start up his dream company doing biking tours around foodie places… I think though I would want a private jet. Damn the carbon foot print! It would make it much easier to travel with puggy (can’t bear to put him into cargo)! I would expand Socktopus to a global empire so I could globe trot visiting the different shops with Puggy on the jet. 😉 I’d have to make sure I bought and conserved vast swathes of rainforest and coral reefs to offset the carbon footprint tho…

5) Places you have lived: Calgary Canada, Edmonton Canada, Paris France, Beijing, Hong Kong, London England, Stockholm, and if summer internships/school count, then Taipei, Kassel Germany & Shangahi.

6) Peeps I want to know more about:

Samro
Cathy-Cate
Emms
Jane
Justine
Sooze

I’ve been thinking about doing a photographic exercise for a while now – training the eye to look for common shapes in unconventional places. When B mentioned my picture a day project, which fell neglected in the wayside, I thought this would be fun and give me a bit of a challenge. So the plan is to capture the entire alphabet, photo by photo, in everyday scenery.

Today we start with A… and here A is for traffic barrier:
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2 thoughts on “A is for…

  1. Clever you, Alice-finding that A! And your Pugzilla is adorable! Thanks for posting the meme-I enjoyed reading about you!The trip the the inlaws sounds so cool, too. I sure wish I could get over to Europe soon! Unfortunately, most of the times that I’ve been, I’ve primarily stayed in one region, though I have been fortunate to have haunted London once!

  2. Alice,LOVE the A. What a good project. I look forward to seeing a B somewhere soon (oooh, that’s going to be tough.) xo B

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