Friday, February 20, 2015

Large wiener causes traffic snarl

Details here:

Valentine's weekend and Presidents Day and snow!

 Well, any good day starts with a good breakfast.
And our new usual spot when traveling downtown is Courtesy Diner near the Zoo.
First stop of the day was daughters first trip to the St Louis Arch.

Here with mom photo-bombing.
 In front of the Old Cathedral on the way to the Arch.
 Ta-Da! The Arch.
 Old Court House in the back ground.
 Inside the pod.
 New ball park from the top of the Arch.
Looking west.
 Arch viewing posture double.
 Arch viewing posture solo.
And the Westward Expansion museum under the Arch.
 Sky blue.
 Next stop, the London Tea Room.
 Beverage and sausage roll. Yum.
Then the very famous 'Missouri Baking Co.'
 Need you ask why?
 So many choices, so little time.
 Next Zia's for dinner.
 Sat. found daughter baking home-made Valentine cookies.
 Spreading the icing.
 Monday found our first snow storm of the season.

Working on our drive-way.

 Working on the neighbors.
 Practice hill by the house.
Professional hill with friends.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Okay Tom Hanks, I am waiting for your call . . . and we did get outside a bit.

65 degrees in February!
What else can you do but get outside and enjoy it.
We can't complain, at least around here, about cabin fever to much this winter because it has just been so mild. But come on, if it's 65 degrees in February you have to get out, cabin fever or no.
And anyway, cabin fever to a loghead is something entirely different.

So.. . . both Sat. and Sunday we headed out to the cabin.
Get out the adventure toys and play on the trampoline.

But about now you are starting to wonder what any of this has to do with the title of this post; "Okay Tom Hanks, I am waiting for your call. . .."
One of daughters favorite movies right now is 'Kit Kittredge'.
(If you do not have a daughter into American Girl dolls, you may have to look it up).
In the stories, set in the 1940's, Kit wants to be a journalist, so there fore uses a typewriter from that era.

So while at the cabin daughter talks dad into getting down a couple of his old typewriters.

And that reminded me of my post of a couple of weeks ago about Tom Hanks and typewriters.
Here is daughter doing her best Kit Kittredge.

We do need to get the ribbons replaced.
Her she is with one of the 'lap-tops' of it's day portable typewriters.

The green box setting behind the typewriters is a portable desk used by the military. I think this one was Korean War era. The front opens and makes a working surface and has a couple of drawers.

A close up of the same one.

Then you also had to carry paper and any files you may need for where ever you were going.

And I can tell you, it weighs more than an IPAD.
Typing on the desk top model.

Keys were a little stiff and need a little oil, but for the most part it all worked just fine.

 Extra, extra! Do they do that anymore?
 In her 'office' at the cabin.

Of course we didn't spend the whole time typing.
What better place to work on a toy log cabin then in a real one.

And when done building. . . .

We took the little yellow canoe down the the creek for some whitewater fun.

She tried it bare footed at first, but the water and rocks were still cold.
Can you believe it's February!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Ever elusive Leslie - the facts start forming.

Perhaps I should be starting at the beginning, but that didn't just seem right today. I guess I wanted to confirm or validate something my mother has said for years. .  and . . . well the first page of the documents I started to explore took care, at least in part, of some of that.

". . .four years overseas in Syria, Hylia, Assam, and Burma, taking part in the Chindit Campaigns"

Mom always said he was with the Chindits.

Here is a photo of that page, third line in the first paragraph states his involvement in the Chindits

My next step, here on this blog will be to start at the beginning of his record and follow it through the war.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Ever elusive Leslie - It has arrived.

If you have followed this blog at all you will remember that for the last year or so I have been trying to find information on one of my mom's brothers, Leslie. he was about nine years older than my mom, so had very little to do with her as she grew up.
Plus this little thing called World War Two fell in there and separated people even further.

I have his birth and death dates. We know he was married, although at the moment, other than one picture, we know few details of that marriage; how long it lasted, who she was or anything else.

While I was out with knee surgery I got all my ducks in a row and filled out all the paper work to acquire his military records.
I wasn't even sure I would find much. Mom had some memories of his involvement in that great campaign, but nothing written down.

I sent all the forms, filled out, back to the home country and was very pleasantly surprised finding a very helpful individual who walked my request through all the appropriate steps. Thanks Gerry.
Actually before the money was received Gerry verified that some information actually existed on Leslie (and on my other Uncle Gordon). Then it just became a matter of time before all the wheels to roll and my requests to  be sent back.

They arrived yesterday.

I have had them for 18 hours, and am a little nervous opening them.
Is this going to be one of those cases where the journey was more than the destination? Was the anticipation of the hunt the greater reward?
Did the movie not turn out as good as the book?

I don't know what I expect to find.
Conformation of mothers memories. Validation for the few things she could tell us over the nears.

Had he indeed served in North Africa and had he indeed been in the Chindits.

We will see.
Today is Saturday, and I have no excuse in putting it off any longer.

I will let you know what I find.

Friday, January 16, 2015

I love this one. . .

. . . and I am trying to find out who the artist is.


Here is a photo from about the same place.

Okay, that does it! I'm gonna build one.

8:00AM BST 14 Oct 2014

Villages with a thriving local pub have more community spirit and stronger local businesses than those which do not, a new study claims.
An analysis of community life in almost 2,800 small rural parishes in England found that those with a thriving pub are between 40 and 50 per cent more likely also to community social events or activities such as cricket matches or village fetes.
Significantly, the 18-month study led by Dr Ignazio Cabras, an economist based at Northumbria University and University of York, concluded that pubs are more important to village life even than the local parish church.
It concludes that although the rate at which local pubs have been closing significantly increased during the financial crisis, small rural communities are conversely relying on their pub to provide a for the social side of village life more than ever.
But it warns that conversely pubs are coming under greater pressure as the fashion for drinking at home spreads from town to country.
Many pubs are, in turn, being forced to turn their attention to tourists for their survival, reducing their focus on those around them.
The study, funded by the British Academy aims to be one of the first to establish by academic means that pubs are essential to promoting community cohesion in rural areas.
Dr Ignazio Cabras, a specialist in complex systems analysis, used existing data to assess how patterns of village life differ between those which have a pub and those which do not.
He concluded that the presence of a pub dramatically increased the likihood of a village having community events, ranging from cricket or football games to art exhibitions and musical events.
It follows a study by the Institute for Public Policy Research which concluded that pubs boost the income of other village businesses by around £80,000 a year but also generate up to £120,000 worth of “social benefit” to rural areas.
Dr Ignazio Cabras said: “We see rural pubs depicted on TV, such as The Woolpack, as the local meeting point and hub for the community to engage with each other.
“This has now been proven as an accurate depiction of life in rural England.”
He added: “There are now just 49,000 pubs in Britain today, compared with 69,000 in 1980, as public houses all over the country are hit by factors deterring visitors including a general reduction in customer spending and more competitive alcohol prices in off-licence retailers.
“In rural areas, this decline has been exacerbated by smaller populations and fewer opportunities in terms of public transport, which make these areas less attractive compared to urban areas from a business perspective.
“However, it appears that the pub has increased its importance as the main hub in the community’s infrastructure, offering support to a wide range of activities. Pubs function as physical incubators which foster engagement and involvement among the community, as well as creating jobs for local people and local suppliers.
“The closure of rural pubs is strongly associated with the decline of social drinking and increasing levels of alcohol consumption in private premises. It is vital the Government supports rural pubs with appropriate policies to ensure our rural way of life is maintained.”