Saturday, 30 January 2010

Yes dear, whatever you say dear...

What a glorious if somewhat 'brass monkey' day! Freezing cold, clear bright sunny day and a fresh dusting of snow. My friend Barry who lives in Hornsea, on the East Yorkshire coast reports three inches of fresh laying snow this morning.

In an earlier blog in October I told the lamentable tale of Citibank and their dreadful customer focus in taking two hours to not answer the phone when I was trying to activate the account and deposit a few quid in what was a new account I had previously just opened on line. After I eventually activated it after yet another interminable wait listening to recorded messages about how important the call was, I couldn't access the account on line. I rang the helpline and a very patient woman from the other side of the world tried to get me into my own account and couldn't explain why she couldn't. A new PIN was ordered to hopefully 'reset the system' and I would have no problem. Guess what? The PIN duly arrived and I still can't get into the system to access or work with my cash.

I have written a letter this morning using old fashioned method of snail mail to cancel the account and transfer the money to my normal bank account which I have been using on-line for years without a hitch. It's only a relatively small amount of cash, but I would have used the account for what little savings I make because the interest rate is good.

I was going to go into the garden today to do some pruning ready for the spring, but the frost and snow has stopped me doing that although I have got the bug to get out and get it done because some bits and pieces have started to arrive from plants and stuff I've ordered on line for the summer. A small bay tree has come and it's in the conservatory waiting for the worst of the frosty weather to go before I can put it out in a sheltered spot. My last one died as it reached about three feet tall, so I hope to have better luck with this good looking little specimen.

The problem living 'up north' is that stuff that isn't fully hardy can't be risked outdoors always unless it's really well sheltered. My trouble this year is that I'm replacing bedding plants which I put in the borders and tubs with shrubs because of the squirrels digging everything up so choosing stuff that is interesting and has colour has not been easy. J Parker's catalogue and Sutton's seed catalogue have been very useful in planning and I've spotted some interesting plants for the shady spots I need to fill as well some good advice in the BBC Gardeners World magazine.

I haven't told her indoors what it's cost! and I still need to source some suitable soil to replace the old multi-purpose compost I normally use in the tubs.
I have relented and I'm going to have some flowers in baskets hanging from brackets on the walls, so at least I'll have a few bright colours and I've gone for a pink collection of flowers and a red collection.

I hope you enjoy the weekend, my cold is still hanging on so I may just use the excuse for taking it easy for the next couple of days. A trip to the council tip this morning was partly successful except they will not take shredded paper into the paper bin and they insist in me putting it in the general waste hopper that is not recycled - WHAT'S THE POINT!

I thought I would muse about marriage and relationships again but don't blame me... perhaps this one is more biased toward us guys this time (I do try to be balanced and neutral but it's sooooo hard) it's the way it is - honest guv!


A man has six items in his bathroom: toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel from M&S.
The average number of items in the typical woman's bathroom is 337 (according to a daily newspaper but then it does have a red top!)

A man would not be able to identify more than 20 of these items.

A woman has the last word in any argument.

Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.


A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.

A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.


A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.

A successful woman is one who can find such a man.

A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't.

A man marries a woman expecting that she won't change, but she does.

Men wake up as good-looking as they went to bed.
Women somehow deteriorate during the night.


Ah, children. A woman knows all about her children. She knows about dentist appointments and romances, best friends, favourite foods, secret fears and hopes and dreams.

A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.


A married man should forget his mistakes.
There's no use in two people remembering the same thing.

Chat soon