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Almost Pen Pals. Used to be Daily Diary.

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


catchthecat Report 25 Aug 2009 14:03

Hi Bridget,
Well yesterday we sorted out the wardrobe in the second bedroom, even painted the inside, hadn't been done in ages, so he will have somewhere to put his clothes!
Very hot and sticky today, cloud cover so no sun.....dare I say we could do with some rain to clear the air!!!!!
Take care


Valerie Report 25 Aug 2009 15:45

Hello Bridget,

I have been without a computer for a couple of days.

I have just read Ann's lovely description of the two towns which seem steeped in history and makes one want to visit.

To-day was a real summer's day here although now 4.30 pm our time the sky is cloudy and the wind is coming up.

I haven't done much over the past few days as I have been keeping an eye on my husband who is having a problem with low blood pressure and
often feels light-headed and dizzy, once passing out in the shower, quite a drama!! He had the clips out yesterday so the leg feels more comfortable.

Take care

Val in SA.


SpanishEyes Report 26 Aug 2009 09:02

Good morning everyone,
Another late start fro me today. I was woken last night at around 03.30hrs by the sounds of Thunder. Earlier in the evening we did have some rain and the thunder etc but it only lasted for about 20 minutes and then the rain stopped although the thunder continued.
The storm was obviously at sea and the sky was spectacular with the lightening which was providing long rods as well as the usual wide expanse of light. The storm continued for about 2 hours and as it moved across the sky the sea became darker and darker. I finally went back to bed and could not believ that no one in the house other than me was woken. However we still have not had the rain that was forecast and the sky looks blue this morning and the sun is shining brightly so looks unlikey to have rain today........

I used this time for my now, 15 minutes, of quiet thinking, I know that sounds strange, quiet thinking in the middle of a storm, but somehow it just seemed to be right.

Frances, I could picture the "typical Spanish village" and your comments about starting a project and then the Spanish not completeing it is a very familiar one !!!! Bless their cotton socks!!!
Also you have been busy with the painting of the wardrobe etc...makes me feel verylazy, but will have to do a thorough clean out next week after our friends have returned home and we get ready for another couple to visit in September.

We are at home all day today but out this evening witha large group of friends to hand over the money to the mayor and the local charity as chosen by the group to support this year.

I am about to put the first recipe on my new thread today and will call it The Culinary Thread as suggested by Ann in Glos.
So please put your favourite recipes on here, it should be fun.

Have a great day everyone and take care



catchthecat Report 26 Aug 2009 11:09

Morning Bridget and everyone,
Yes we had the thunder and lighteneing last night around 10.30, must have been quite away away as there was more lightening than thunder, but no rain. Today it is still undecided, great deal of cloud but still quite hot, very muggy.
Enjoy your day.
PS Am going to find the Culinary Thread......


Valerie Report 26 Aug 2009 11:45

Good morning all,

When I looked out across the sea this morning the sun was like a ball
of fire in the sky and the sea was dark. Now we are having a little
rain and it is quite cool.

Otherwise everything is going along quietly .

I look forward to reading the Culinary Thread.

Take care.

Val in SA.


AnninGlos Report 26 Aug 2009 14:22

Another town very close to where I live is Tewkesbury, it is about 20 minutes by car from here. It is an attractive town which unfortunately suffers from the fact that the main road runs through the middle, there is a bypass from one direction but not from another so there is always a lot of traffic going through the town.

Tewkesbury is an ancient settlement at the meeting of the rivers Severn and Avon. The surrounding rivers and flood plain have prevented the old town from expanding so that its long thin profile has hardly altered since the middle ages. Tewkesbury presents one of the best medieval townscapes in England with its fine half-timbered Tudor buildings, overhanging upper storeys and ornately carved doorways.

A minus to the presence of the two rivers is the fact that it invariably floods and in 2007 suffered badly with many people being made homeless for up to 18 months because of flooding.

Tewkesbury is renowned as having one of the best medieval black and white townscapes in the country and has much to delight the visitor. Discover the hidden charms along narrow alleyways where the eaves of crooked timber buildings nearly touch or take a leisurely cruise along the river.

Tewkesbury is dominated by the 12th-century Abbey. Known to some as the ‘Westminster Abbey’ of the feudal barony, this beautiful building has the highest Norman tower in England as well as rich architecture and artistic heritage. Also here are the fascinating John Moore Countryside Museum, the Town Museum and the Old Baptist Chapel.

(Some of the above has been taken from their web site.)

Tewkesbury was also the site of one of the battles of the Wars of the Roses and I have to insert some text from the web again as I am no historian.

At Bristol Margaret of Anjou was joined by more volunteers and raised funds and some artillery. Continuing north, she aimed to cross the Severn into Wales. The nearest bridge was at Gloucester and the next at Upton, though there was a deep ford at Lower Lode, Tewkesbury. Meanwhile Edward IV reassembled his victorious army and sent messengers ordering the citizens of Gloucester to close their gates against the Lancastrians. Without time to storm the city walls, Margaret marched on to Tewkesbury pursued by Edward. On the night of 3 May the Lancastrians camped just south of Tewkesbury with Edward two miles away at Tredington. Margaret dared not risk being caught with her forces divided to cross the river so her troops deployed in battle order on the higher ground, probably around Gupshill Manor.

Early next morning, Saturday, 4 May 1471, the Yorkists moved into position along the ridge from Southwick Park through Stonehouse Farm. The battle opened with an artillery exchange and a flurry of arrows. Somerset, on the Lancastrian right, advanced to outflank his opposite number, the Duke of Gloucester, later Richard III. Somerset did not know that Edward had sent 200 cavalry to search the wooded area of Tewkesbury Park. These `lances' now hurtled down the hill to take Somerset's men in the flank. The Lancastrian right retreated in disorder. Somerset blamed Lord Wenlock who commanded the Lancastrian centre for not supporting him and, according to some sources, beheaded him in front of his own men. The Lancastrians now fled in panic, large numbers being killed in the `Bloody Meadow' and trying to cross the River Swilgate.

Prince Edward was killed in the retreat, together with John Beaufort, Somerset's brother. Other prominent Lancastrians took refuge in the Abbey, including Somerset and John Langstrother, Prior of St John. The Yorkists violated the sanctuary of the church and the Lancastrian leaders were summarily tried and executed, probably at the Crescent. Several Lancastrians were buried in the Abbey, notably Edward, Prince of Wales, whose tomb is beneath the main tower from which the sun of York shines down on him. George, Duke of Clarence, a brother of Edward IV, who fought on the Yorkist side and who later reputedly drowned in a butt of Malmsey wine, also has a famous vault in the Abbey. Queen Margaret, after spending a night at Payne's Place, Bushley, was arrested, probably at Little Malvern Priory, and forced to enter London on 21 May with the victorious Edward IV That night her husband, Henry VI, was murdered in the Tower where she herself was imprisoned for several years before being ransomed by her father, the King of France. Edward ruled peacefully and powerfully until his death in 1483. The Yorkists then quarrelled among themselves, enabling the Lancastrian Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, to win the throne from Richard III on Bosworth Field in 1485 and to survive a final Yorkist thrust at Stoke in 1487.

The victims of the battle are still remembered in an annual communion service in the Abbey on 4 May.

Here ends the history lesson



Julia Report 26 Aug 2009 14:56

Where is the Culinery Thread I have read about on here
Julia in Derbyshire


AnninGlos Report 26 Aug 2009 15:01

Haven't seen it yet Julia.


SpanishEyes Report 26 Aug 2009 15:06

Apologies, Apologies will now start Culinary Thread on Chat

Mea culper!!!



SpanishEyes Report 26 Aug 2009 15:28

Culinary Delight now on Chat



SpanishEyes Report 27 Aug 2009 07:07

Another warm morning here in Peniscola but did manage to sleep until around 06.00hrs, may have had something to do with the G and Ts last night.
We had a good time at the BBQ and 1000.Euros were handed over top the local Stroke Assosciation which was greatfully received.

We had an attendance of around 50 people , some good food, music and conversation. I won a bottle of wine in the raffle, as it was the last prize Maybe it is cooking wine so will add it t the nest Spag Bog.!

We are having just one couple around this evening so there will be sisx of us for the evening meal One of my visitors is a dab hand at Paella and he is cooking for tonight....we may have Fiduea for a change, all depends on what fresh fish and meat we bye when we go shopping later this morning.

I am leaving descriptions of the area aout of my messages until next week when I shall write about the more rugged coastline and the history of the Peninsula....This area was used for the Film El Cid. Does anyone recall that film.?
Thanks to everyone who has PMd me re the recipes BUT have not noted that anyone else has added a recipe, the idea is to share favourites so come and put some on the link

If anyone is interested in Spanish foods I can do several of those, some given to me by my eldest sons partner. She has stayed in contact even though they are no longer romantically involved but are very good friends.

How about adding what is your fav 3 course meal! and why?

I had my quiet time this morning sitting on the balcony at the back and top of the house...It was very peaceful and calm and Jet and Joe stayed quietly by my side. I thoght How lucky I am to have such peaceful surroundings, to be in a very contented period of my life and to feel satisfied. I recalled times when this wasn't so and hope that anyone who is as I was at those times finds some peace, so this morning my message to you all is Peace and Happiness.

bye for now



SpanishEyes Report 28 Aug 2009 09:24

Good morning to anyone out there

Where is everyone?

Sadly no one other than me put a posting on here yesterday so maybe it is time to stop.

If anyone visits this thread today please leave a message to say whether or not it is time to say adios

Have a good day everyone



~♥footie~angel♥~ Report 28 Aug 2009 09:28

Hi x


catchthecat Report 28 Aug 2009 10:35

Morning Bridget,
Didn't post yesterday as seemed to be terribly busy. Weather still wonderful but according to Spanish forecast we can expect cloud at the weekend and you will probably have a tormenta to look forward to..hey ho!
We seem to be missing one cat...we have two black and white cats, litter mates, were feral but are now mostly domesticated, one of them disappeared on Sunday after turning her nose up at her food, we surmise that she has found a new home probably people out here on holiday and may be back when they return home or not!! The other one caught a snake last evening of which she was very proud, at least she doesn't try and bring them in the house.
Enjoy your day


Valerie Report 28 Aug 2009 10:40

Good morning everyone,

To-day is rather chilly although the sun is shining.

Yesterday was rather a busy day, my gardener and my domestic worker both come on a Thursday and we had visitors in the morning and the afternoon.

We have the Shell Festtival (it's called the Shell Festival because Shell petrol used to sponsor it) coming up next month so the town will be filled with visitors. The central business area will be closed to motor traffic and stalls will be erected in town and also on the beachfront. I always enjoy the festival atmosphere.

I would like to see your thread continue.

Val in SA


AnninGlos Report 28 Aug 2009 11:54

Bridget, please do not stop posting on this thread, I enjoy your posts. I was not on here much yesterday as it was our 49th anniversary and we were out all day. I don't know if you read about my day on one of the other threads but I'll tell you now in case you didn't.
On the 27th it was our 49th wedding anniversary – one year to go to the Golden one!! We had a lovely day out. We drove over to Westonbirt going along the edge of the Cotswolds over Selsey common, at one point I was looking out over the whole of the Stroud valley which was bathed in sunshine and which looked so beautiful and green. Along the road we had to stop to allow the free ranging cattle to cross over and they were not in any hurry so it was as well that we were not either.
We arrived at Westonbirt Arboretum at about 10.45 to find quite a few cars already there. This week it is the Festival of the Tree so, with it also being school holidays, it is a popular place to go. I assume many people are ‘Friends of’ like us as it is £8 to go in so not cheap. We had a coffee and shared a scone (us and the wasps) before going to look at the main attraction that day which was the chain saw wood carving. Tents were going up in readiness for the bank holiday weekend when there will be a lot more stalls there but it will also be very crowded so not a good time for visiting really. The carvings were excellent, these people are so clever, they take a tree trunk and carve huge wooden sculptures, one was a large heavy horse, another was a snake on a tree, another a woman’s figure. There were also some finished wooden sculptures on display and for sale and they were smaller and polished and way beyond our means. One was a man canoeing through white water and it was so vibrant and over a thousand pounds. After looking at the carvings we walked through the old arboretum where, in the autumn, all the acers turn glorious colours, some of the leaves were actually starting to turn but mostly it was green and lush and beautiful and, away from the children, peaceful.
We left Westonbirt and drove 3 miles to Tetbury where we had lunch and a look around the town. We visited the Chipping steps, cobbled steep steps with cottages all along and down the side, this was where for centuries the local mop fairs ensured the locals were kept in employment. We saw Gumstool Hill where on spring bank holiday Mondays they hold the woolsack races. We saw the ancient market house in the centre and the beautiful gothic church of St Mary’s with one of the tallest spires in the country.
On the way home we called in to a couple of garden centres, and had a cup of tea in one. Noticed that the harvest was complete for one farmer as his hay was all in. Then in the evening we had an Indian takeaway and a bottle of Cava to finish off our day.

So you see why I didn't post yesterday Bridget.

Haven't managed to come up with a recipe yet, mainly I cook very ordinary recipes and rely a lot of bottled sauces, if somebody has gone to the trouble of concocting a sauce why should I replicate it?

By the way what is fiduea?



catchthecat Report 28 Aug 2009 12:08

Dear Ann,
Fideua is similar to a paella except it is made with noodles,very fine, tiny ones, fish stock and whatever fish is available,though there is never a lot of fish in it, no saffron, no vegetables, and can be absolutely delicious. We had one once as a starter near Barcelona and it had one of those small soft-shelled crabs on...the Spanish suck the middles out of these but we left ours, well you would wouldn't you!!!
Hope you get the idea.


AnninGlos Report 28 Aug 2009 12:11

Thanks Frances, not seen it in the Canaries so maybe it is a mainland dish.


catchthecat Report 28 Aug 2009 15:31

Dear Ann,
Obviously different parts of Spain have different ways of cooking fideua, I have just looked in my Spanish cookery book and lo and behold there is everything in it but the kitchen sink. I always thought it was peasant food but the recipe in the book would cost an arm and a leg to prepare, so it is probably a question of put in what you can afford as long as you use the noodles!!
Hey ho


me Report 28 Aug 2009 15:33

Sorry all been busy

ill be adding again soon