A View (Round The Corner) From The Greenhouse; Happy New Year……Innit?

-2C Extreme Weather Event
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Welcome to 2024 Postaliers. A new year, undoubtedly filled to the brim with the same old bollix. At least, so long as I’m able to maintain my concentration, you’ll have my fortnightly diary to take your mind off the growing tax burden, “extreme” weather events, the UN’s insistence that a man with a fake pair of breasts and a vaginoplasty can represent the women of the UK on the global stage, proxy wars which cost £millions yet resolve nothing, two-tier policing with accompanying batons to the head (if you’re “far right”), Klimate Kranks, the EU funded Remainiac rump, Uni-party politics, Big Pharma profiteering, “storms” with silly names, WHO/WEF world government shenanigans, new Covid strains, along with all their attendant corruption, lies and nurses making Tik-Tok videos, the growing unexplained(?) excess death count, the nothing-burger that will turn out to be the much vaunted “Epstein Lists” and everything else that brings colour, on a daily basis, to our normal, ordinary, hum-drum lives.

Fergus Strikes
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Nothing’s happened (gardening wise) in the greenhouse so far this year, or, for that matter, the latter part of last year. A combination of ennui, strong winds, the season of goodwill, a round of trips to help my daughter move house and a nasty, but inconvenient injury to Dave, which occurred as he attempted to make a start on replacing some of the glass we lost when one (or more) of storms Fergus, Gerrit and Henk hit, has me a couple of weeks behind where I’d like to be, although I’m not expecting the lost time to impact things too hard. I haven’t even formulated a “planting plan” yet, but I’m sure it’ll revolve around the tomato plants, in terms of both numbers and siting.

Gerrit Passes Through
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

This particular piece of glass has led something of a charmed life over the last couple of years, not least because of the difficulty in accessing it for replacement purposes, sadly, there’s more going on in this corner of the house than a broken pane. the timber frame’s become detached from the main steel structure, hence the “yawk up”, something that will need to be addressed urgently once Dave has had his stitches removed and regains full use of his injured hand. Hopefully there’s no lasting damage, the future of the house rests on his (thankfully) broad shoulders.

Henk, The Bastard!
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

What I call “the rear corner” (on the same west facing side) suffered its share of damage too, although not structural (so far as the main frame’s concerned) some of the timber framing and glass support beading also needs replacing. As the weather’s turned a bit and the wind’s dropped, making if very unlikely that falling glass is a factor in what can and can’t be done, I may well get in there this week and start the tidying up, before we get hit by the coming “Snow Bomb”, which has been prophesied, on GB News (there are other “news” outlets) by “Pickled Onion Jim”).

Christmas Hedgerow Nectar
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Scrumping, as I’ve previously mentioned, isn’t just the preserve of short trouser and fair-isle jumper wearing schoolboys, anyone can scrump, in fact I heartily recommend it as both a way of both keeping fit, eating healthily and (probably more importantly) getting summat for nowt. Back at the end of September I spotted a well established sloe bush in the back garden of the house which used to belong to my wife’s grandparents. The chap who now owns it is a somewhat rare visitor with a certain aloofness about him. Any road up, by balancing precariously on a somewhat decrepit dry stone wall, I managed to reach into the garden and harvest a couple of handfuls of small but perfectly formed dark purple fruits. If he’d have been home I may even have asked the owners permission, but where’s the fun in that? I washed the fruit (you never know), pricked it and popped it in a Kilner jar with 100 grams of vanilla sugar, a cinnamon stick and a scant half bottle of decent export strength gin, giving it a gentle shake every couple of days or so. The 2022 damson gin was a decent enough tipple, but I prefer this, it has a deeper, more warming flavour. Might even become a regular thing, so long as I’m able to manage the harvesting bit!

Perennially Glorious Ullswater
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

I don’t suppose we’re unusual in liking to keep our Christmas traditions going, both the daughters were with us for the day and the youngest returned for the obligatory Boxing Day walk (named storms not withstanding). A short return stroll from Glencoyne Bay to Glenridding and back offered up the chance to view Ullswater at its very best, serenely calm, yet slightly brooding and, you won’t be surprised to know, still as racist and hideously white as its always been. We live (equally) in hope and expectation of the much vaunted twin benefits of multi-culturalism and diversity reaching these far flung corners of our once sceptered isle, but, until such time as that happens I suppose we’ll have to make do with exchanging pleasantries 9and the odd taciturn nod) with people who look just like us. Seriously though, there aren’t any barriers stopping anyone taking a trip to the countryside, as much as the race grifters would have you believe there are. Come one, come all say I, just make sure you take your rubbish home with you and, if you’re going to have a crap on one of the small beaches (as I saw one of our bearded friends do), then have the courtesy to pick it up and take that home with you, too.

Cheeseboard, Beetroot Relish, Chili Jam, Green Tomato Chutney
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Next door for New Years Eve, to eat buffet food, play dominoes, drink copious amounts of fizzy wine and see off the remains of the cheese, accompanied by a selection of home made condiments. A splendid evening was had by all. I had considered chancing the local, but I think I’m past that now, two or three pints on a Tuesday night, with the lads of the “beer and bullshit” club, is about as much beer as I can drink in one sitting, without feeling a little the worse for wear the next day. It’s no fun getting old.

Domestic Drama? Bugger!
© Colin Cross, Going Postal 2024

Misfortune can strike when you least expect it (for proof, just ask Boris Johnson) and I found myself being called back from the greenhouse, earlier this week, as the hot water flexi-pipe to the upstairs bathroom sink tap decided to fail. Thankfully Mrs. C had the presence of mind to get Dave round before I could make it home. He got the water turned off and started the process of sucking up the water with his “wet and dry” vacuum, but not before a great deal of it found its way through one of the kitchen light fittings. It could have been worse, although I wouldn’t recommend trying to source a couple of 500mm tap tails in Penrith, unless you have a couple of hours to waste and you’re prepared to be unsuccessful in your quest. I ended up (okay, I helped a bit) replacing the tap and both the connecting pipes as a “better safe than sorry” precaution, I just have to re-install the light fitting. Having a neighbour who can turn his hand to just about anything isn’t something to be sniffed at, thanks Dave.

2024 is likely to see a General Election (if we aren’t subject to World Government ordered Martial Law before October) and the gloves are coming off already. As such, I thought I’d take a look at the (current) leading “runners and riders”;

Starmer’s the perfect manifestation of this latest chapter in the “New Labour” saga; on the face of it he’s the benign and un-threatening visage of “Progressive Liberalism”, just give me a chance he asks, and I’ll fix everything as if it had never been broken. He brings with him his support for ongoing proxy-war, his false promises to deal with the immigration issue, his belief that the NHS can be made to work properly with more and more money, his promise to tax the rich to pay for all his grandiose schemes and an unflinching commitment to “Net Zero”. A bland man, bereft of charisma, who can’t tell us what a woman is and has more faces than a town hall clock. The spectres of Bliar, Mandleson and Broon hang around him like a bad smell.  2/7 on to be next PM with “Honest Col”.

Sunak’s likely to lead the Tories to their deserved defeat (although I’m not counting my chickens just yet). He’s an odd little chap, with a cheeky smile and an earnest way of speaking. He’s a “promiser” too, although his track record, since being handed the leadership following some seemingly shady goings-on at Tory HQ, leaves much to be desired. The list of his failings and calumnies, not least during his tenure as Chancellor, are manifold. I’m guessing he either has friends in very high places or he knows where ALL the Tory skeletons of the last several years are buried. He supports proxy-war, he’s going to sort immigration out once and for all, he’s going to halve inflation (ha ha), he’s fully committed to “Net Zero”, he’s going to tax the “little man” until the pips squeak and cut the dole money, whilst facilitating £millions, every day, to house illegal immigrants, thereby ensuring all the shareholders of SERCO (many of them Tory grandees *allegedly) get to take home nice fat dividends. A cheeky chappy with a direct line to Klaus Schwab, “Dishi Rishi” has a second favourites chance at 6/4 against (the polls are never right).

The Lib-Dems, with “Honest” Ed Davey at the helm, enter the field with a handicappers penalty, due to their love of lock-downs, their commitment to promoting feelings over reality and their love of all things Brussels. A long shot at 16/1, given Eds recent bad publicity but could feature in the closing stages and may yet have a stayers chance. A couple of other runners catch the eye, but they don’t really have much of a chance; notable amongst them is Nigel Farage, this old stayer would have a chance if he weren’t carrying so much excess weight and he’s bound to fade on the run in. Currently at 50/1 but likely to drift in the market. As for the rest, the SNP, Reform, The SDP, UKIP et al, I’m going 100/1 the field.

There are rumours of a late runner which could throw the handicappers (and the Bliarites) into a tizz if true. Jeremy Corbyn may yet hit the starting gate, riding, “Party Of The Left”, with stable groom Laura Pidcock leading him into the parade ring. That would throw multiple spanners into the Labour works. He has a base which is both radical and vocal and he’d get them on the stump. If this one starts it probably won’t get the distance, but, if it does get round the “Antisemitism” bend it could get placed although it’s more likely to fall, bringing down at least one of the more fancied runners, an outsiders e/w chance at 25/1.

© Colin Cross 2024