I was more than pleased to see Rachel Johnson’s sensible comment in the Mail On Sunday regarding the 44 year old man who was allowed to walk free from court last week even though it was proven, that he did indeed have sexual contact with, a then, 16 year old girl, whilst ‘in a position of trust as one of her teachers’.

Despite the outcry from many organisations ranging from the NSPCC, Barnardo’s, The National Association for People Abused in Childhood, and the End Violence Against Women campaigners to name but a few, I think the leniency shown to the teacher was justified.

Honestly, talk about over reaction. This was consexual sex.  Yes it was ill judged, and foolish, but it was still consensual. The pupil was not raped, or co-erced and as such in my view, this means that the teacher should NOT be labelled as any sort of paedophile, as he is not.

This pupil wanted him, she made sure she got him. Girls of 16 can be incredibly manipulative. It is not always the man.

The teacher is guilty of being weak, having a dreadful lack of judgement, and on a far grander scale, showing total disrespect to both his long suffering wife, and in the bigger picture his employers.

As a Mother and Grandmother, I honestly wonder if some of these protesters are living in a box somewhere and do not actually get out there and see, and experience REAL life, REAL situations that they are supposed to be aware of.

Don’t they realise just how a weak willed teacher ‘might’ have his head turned by a strong willed, streetwise, pretty fabulous looking girl who is 15 going on 25 and is actually still in year 11.

Sophie 1

Here is a young friend of mine and in this picture she is 15.  She is a gorgeous, bright, funny, strong minded, girl, who thankfully instead of making eyes at a male teacher, is more likely to kick him in the nuts, and tell him to ‘do one’ if he dared to even dream about invading her personal space.

She has a fantastic family around her, and is confident enough NOT to seek the attentions of an unsuitable man.

BUT, what if she was needy and attention seeking, with looks like this, if SHE turned on her charms, and decided she was going to ‘have’ SIR, she could.

No matter how many ‘agencies’ bang on about child protection, it’s not always the child that needs it, as Rachel Johnson says, the laws are there to protect the teacher as much as the pupil, and what a good job it is.

Look at another one of my friends. She is 15.  Again from a very close knit family, she’s confident, strikingly attractive, intelligent, popular, and streetwise.  Already an aspiring model, she’s clever, and cool enough to simply give ‘SIR’ the most withering of looks and tell him to get lost if he thought he was in with a chance.   Eloise Perry.

But what if she was needy, and attention seeking, with looks like this if SHE turned on her charms, and decided she was going to ‘have’ SIR, she could.

Way back in the late 60’s, when school youth clubs were popular, and before the formation of many of these child protection agencies, I also nearly ‘had’ SIR.

He wasn’t actually my teacher, but he ran a youth club that I used to go to at a different school, and I was out to get him.

Now, some 47 years later, I recall he was dark, swarthy looking, he smoked roll ups and had lovely hooded eyes.  He was an absolute stalwart of the local community, involved in sport, music, and many other school related activities, but was still something of a rebel.

At the time, he was 40 years old.  I was 15 years old, small, blonde and used to getting my own way, this poor bloke had no chance.  He had absolutely no ill intent towards me. He was kind, looked out for me, and never acted inappropriately towards me in any way whatsoever, until I almost forced him to!

Luckily for him, we were interrupted and the moment was gone, but I know without a doubt that given five more minutes, it would have been an entirely different story I’d be telling you, I don’t think I’d have allowed him to refuse!

But then, as now, IF rumours had started, police and my parents would have been involved and he probably would have lost his job, and lost his good name, and it truly would all have been my fault, not his.

These days, boys and girls are sexting, texting and talking about sex before they’ve even left junior school.  A high percentage of them know exactly what’s what in the sexual timetable of life.

Boys can be just as manipulative as girls, and if ‘Miss’ happens to be fit and flirty, then she too will be shown no mercy by the one who wants to be her favourite and have a fumble in the form room.

But if things did go too far and the boy cried wolf, then you can be sure it would be all the fault of ‘Miss’ in her moment of madness.

What do you think about the story in the newspapers?  Do you know anyone who actually had a fling with their teacher, maybe you had more than just a crush on yours?


Don’t get me wrong, I genuinely enjoy watching Stephen Fry on the telly. I love his wit, admire his knowledge, and I’m no stranger to a bit of QI.

I also love a gay wedding, a lesbian wedding, any kind of wedding. Let’s face it, in my job, I’ve personally sent my fair share of brides and brides, and, grooms and grooms, down towards the ceremony table to seal the deal.

But I won’t lie to you, the picture of him and his ‘much younger man’ brings  out my ‘oh FFS, you’ve got to be kidding’  side.   Stephen Fry and tweet.

Likewise, my cynical reaction is rather than a two become one tweet I’d venture there will be a one will become two tweet, before the ink is dry on the 11 plus certificate…..

Oooops, no sorry, of course I mean the marriage certificate.

It’s an easy mistake to make, let’s face it, the younger groom looks like he’s still in year 11

The picture shows Stephen Fry gazing proudly at his young beau in quite a ‘fatherly’ way, as if he’s just signed a contract for some high profile football team, when in actual fact he’s just signed a contract for a totally different kind of ball game….let’s hope he takes all the ‘pitch’ invasions like a man….

This is one c’leb gay relationship that really makes me feel queasy, as, unlike Elton and David, it’s such a mismatch of everything, and just looks wrong on so many levels.


A bit like Katie Hopkins, I don’t actually give a toss about what people think of me LIKING her, because I do.

Katie Hopkins picture 3

Regardless of public opinion a lot of things she says are what many other people would like to say, but, unlike her,  don’t have the balls to actually say it.

Before, during and after any of the Celebrity Big Brother episodes, Twitter goes NUTS with Tweets of positivity for her.

Mainly people say they are warming to her, or are surprised to say they like her.

Indeed some are actually worried that they like her and want her to win. As I do.

Isn’t it usually the type of people that she aims her criticism at, who are the ones that take the most offence, and ‘hate’ her?

Maybe that’s because a little tad of truth sometimes hurts,…….if the cap fits wear it…….kind of thing.

On Emma Watson’s ‘side boobs’ Katie remarked ‘”Emma Watson needed to give this look a miss. Her sad side boobs are barely there.  To have a ‘sidey’ – you need a boob in the first place.”

( Yes I’d agree with that, wouldn’t you? )

On Paternity Leave:  “Most men would rather boil their heads in breast milk than take 26 weeks paternity leave. At present 75% of men take one week or less.”

( Yes after the novelty of the birth, showing off the new-born, and wetting the baby’s head, I’d say that’s about right too, wouldn’t you? )

On babies themselves: “Babies may be many things – but they are not good company. Most working mums acknowledge babies are boring, even if they have to keep this a secret from the scowling mob of school gate mums.”

( Bright, communicative new Mums, DO find babies boring, they eat, sleep and poo, and don’t make much conversation. Well you can’t argue with that can you? )

Seriously, if you stop listening to other peoples judgements of her, and watch and listen for yourself, you will find more than one opinion of hers that you agree with, but might, not quite, be brave enough to voice yourself.

Pictures courtesy of: and



If I had my way, I’d make it compulsory for all healthy, older people, who live alone, to be given an all-expenses paid, rescue dog.

Loneliness is a terrible thing, it’s so isolating,  and studies seem to show, shortens the life of those that endure it, after all, if you are not seeing anyone, or talking to anyone, what point is there in carrying on.

So many older people, would benefit from having a dog to look after. It would give them a purpose, a reason to go for that beneficial walk, a chance to stop and chat to other dog owners, and to generally get out of the house for a couple of hours every day.

When you are out with your dog, people exchange pleasantries, initially about the weather, then as time goes on, and you do a regular route at a regular time, the conversations get longer, and people begin to recognise each other, and even if they don’t know the name of the dog owner, they usually know the name of the dog.

Rocky’s Dad, Bonnies Mum.

No dog owner is really fussed about their own name being known; you recognise people by their dog, not really by their face!

Buddy and I have met so many lovely folk while we’ve been out walking both in Spain, and here in the UK.

Park 15.11.12 005

In Spain I found a little park just at the bottom of my street, and spent many enjoyable hours with people who tried in vain to teach me some Spanish, and who in turn were eager to point to things and ask me ‘English is?’

Coming straight out of a Spanish dog rescue I had no idea if Buddy would be friendly towards all other dogs, or if there was a breed or colour he would grumble at, but whilst at first he was a bit overwhelmed, he soon found his feet ( or paws ) and  learnt the ‘chase me’ game pretty quick too.

Later, when we returned to the UK, he’d earned his good dog stripes and I knew that although he was quite lively, he was a lover of dogs, not a fighter of dogs.

Now we have an easy daily routine of a park walk and play in the mornings with George the deaf dog, Dave the Spaniel, Max the Cockapoo, Remy the Terrier, Pippa the Springer, and Dudley the Tibetan Terrier, who is my daughter’s dog.  To name but a few.

We all meet about 9.30 in the park, and it’s like a dog fest.

Everyone stands around chatting, friendships are forged both human and canine.  New puppies are coaxed and cuddled, new owners welcomed and introduced to everyone.

Some days there can be up to 15 dogs, some days, maybe 4 or 5, but the main thing is its sociable.  An older person with a rescue dog, is just as welcome as a teenager with a new bundle of fluff on its first outing.   DOG SMALL WHITE

Just think how much an older person, who lives alone would enjoy and benefit from that, not to mention the fact that they could provide a loving home for all those dogs that Paul O’Grady tortures us with every week on the telly.

Every week it makes me cry. Sniff.

Get a campaign going Mr O’Grady, you’ve got the clout, so that a not so active dog could be matched with a man who just needs a bit of gentle exercise.

Greyhounds are a perfect choice, they are major sofa surfers, contrary to popular belief. Don’t think that just because they’ve spent their life racing round a track after a pretend rabbit that they need to race for miles round the countryside.

NO, they are the laziest dogs ever.     DOG GREYHOUND

How about a nice little rescued Yorkie for a lady who maybe would prefer a small lap dog to keep her company, imagine all those other nice ladies she might stop and chat to whilst she’s out for a stroll in the sunshine with her dog.

It’s not rocket science.  There are thousands of lonely dogs in kennels, there are thousands of lonely people in houses.

They could save each other from an early grave.

To read about Buddy’s latest ‘faux pas’ please go and ‘like’ him on Facebook at



Yesterday I went to a funeral.  The lovely 94 year old lady was undoubtedly on her way to heaven and believe me, all the other residents would have been calling, ‘Come on up, let’s taste your featherlight cakes, let’s hear your glorious voice, let’s watch your fingers whizz across a piano keyboard, let’s see you work your magic with a duster’.

If ever there was a woman going to a better place, she most definitely has!

And the funeral was the reason for the journeys I’m about to describe.

The main route to my destination had been gridlocked for the previous two mornings and so I decided to let the train take the strain, and rocked up at the local village station about 10.30

There had sadly been a suicide the day before at the station, but I was still intrigued to see two mature, kindly ladies with ‘Samaritan’ written on their warm fleeces, and an invitation saying ‘talk to me’.  So I did. But only because I’m just plain nosey.


I haven’t contemplated suicide, well not  since Robbie left Take That….

In hushed tones, they asked me if travelled from the station every day, which I don’t, and asked if I’d heard about the ‘incident’ the previous day, which I had.  Apparently the Samaritans often attend the scene of a suicide in case anyone wants to talk about it.

Whilst I think they do sterling work, and I’m full of admiration, my cynical side still wanted to crack a feeble joke and say,

‘It’s such a pity you weren’t here yesterday’…..

So I boarded the train, and found myself in a carriage with 6 people opposite me, and 2 either side of me.  All of the other travellers had their heads down looking at their mobile phones. Not one of them was reading a book or a news-paper or even chatting to anyone.

I, on the other hand, gazed out of the window for the whole journey, and how nice it was to see those 2 lovely tall white horses being ridden round a field next to the track, and to spot the house of an old friend, I wondered what they were up to now, it’s been 40 years since I’ve seen them.    mobile phone railway.

I saw beautifully manicured gardens, some small children playing on a swing in their garden, a fisherman bending over a steaming kettle.

Just little snippets of other people’s lives that the phone browsers missed completely.

It was utterly silent, nobody spoke, or engaged with each other, and presumably this is how these commuters spend their travelling time every day.

Isn’t that sad, and such a waste of opportunity.

Fast forward to the return journey and things couldn’t have been more different.

There were 6 people in the homeward bound carriage, one was resolutely looking down at his phone with earplugs in, and another one of them was wired up to an iPod but was at least looking out of the window, as were the other passengers.

All of a sudden iPod man began to laugh out loud. Real hearty laughter, and at first everyone else exchanged nervous glances in a ‘is he raving mad’ kind of way.

He didn’t care, he carried on laughing, and the nervous glances changed to amused glances, and then the lady next to me began to do that stifled laughter thing, when you try to keep your mouth closed, your body still but your chest is moving ever so slightly.

I felt her movement and she looked at me and openly laughed, so I laughed with her.  The couple opposite looked at us laughing, and laughed themselves, now 4 people are laughing at another man laughing but we have no bloody idea what he is laughing at.

People began talking about laughter, how infectious it is, and continued to join in with iPod man each time he laughed out loud. Eventually, he was crying with laughter and it was all beyond a joke.    man laughing

Mr Mobile Phone man was, meanwhile completely oblivious of all the merriment as he hadn’t once looked up, or heard the kerfuffle.

Eventually laughing man took out his earplugs and wiped away his tears, and in reply to me asking, ‘you must tell us what you were listening to, he replied…

‘I’m sorry I haven’t a clue’ and we all just erupted into even more laughter.

I know this story reeks of ‘you had to be there’, but it’s not really about what I personally saw or heard, it’s about what everyone else missed, whilst being otherwise engaged.

What annoys you most about the intrusiveness of mobile technology ?


A personal blog is supposedly about your personal life. Snippets and stories that you want to share with your readers, to amuse them, to inform them, sometimes even to challenge them.

All of which I try to do. Often.

But today, as I’m sitting writing this little missive, a pair of gorgeous, big brown eyes are staring at me from the opposite sofa, where ‘my boy’ is snuggled on a big soft throw, with his head resting on an even bigger soft cushion.  He’s pretending to be asleep, but I can see the light reflected in his eyes, and he doesn’t fool me.

It looks something like this ……….. my camera 037

Some of my readers will already know Buddy’s story, but for my new reader (!) a recap.

In early May 2011, I found myself volunteering at a dog shelter on the Costa Dorada in Spain.

On the first day I went there, I was expecting to pat a few hairy heads, top up some water bowls and probably get in the way.  Nothing prepared me for the 100 or so dogs that ran to greet me, nor the other 200 that were housed in blocks of many secure enclosures.

Animal shelter entrance.

And there he was. Black Dog as he was simply called masquerading as a questionable Catalan Sheep Dog.

Whilst many of the other dogs were barking and frantically jumping up at the enclosure, Black Dog just laid quietly, with his neck and back legs draped over the apex of two beaten up old wooden kennels, and his tummy just resting in the gap, watching every man and his dog go by.

I was told that his chances of being rehomed in Spain were slim. The Spanish aren’t drawn to black hairy dogs, they prefer small white, apartment living dogs.  The future looked a bit bleak for Black Dog

But then, just as now, he watched my every move whilst acting really cool and uninterested, whilst all the dogs around him were literally barking mad.

My lifestyle at the time meant that NO reputable dog charity in the UK would approve me a suitable dog adopter, but I knew within the first few days of working at the dog shelter, that Black Dog was coming home with me.

The weeks went by, and June arrived, it was beyond hot, and let me tell you the collective poo of 200 dogs in searing heat is not to be sniffed at.

It was time to lay claim to my dog, and run for the cool hills.

On June 28th 2011, Black Dog was tied to the bumper of my car, and very unceremoniously micro-chipped and vaccinated. I paid my 100e rehoming fee. He jumped into the boot, and with the very warm wind in his fur I drove him away.

Despite very limited knowledge of his background, BUDDY has turned out to be a joy to own. I’ve dragged him from here to there and back again.

Buddy for Bubble

Wherever I lay my hat, that’s his home, and today from our home, it’s all about the boy, my boy, BUDDY!

You can also read about Buddy here:

Please come and ‘like’ his page!



It’s very rare for me to venture into the world of Celebrity Big Brother.

However, as I have genuinely lost the Broadchurch plot, and I was a bit brain dead anyway, CBB seemed the most appropriate thing to watch, given that my powers of concentration were somewhat lacking.

Big Brother House

Let’s see what other brain dead people are up to this evening I thought!

Being female, I am of course capable of doing two things at once, and I had one eye on the telly, and one eye on Twitter, which almost went into overdrive when one of the occupants of the house was asked to leave immediately, instead of going through the normal eviction process.

He has in short been given the Celebrity Big Brother boot up his arse.

To be frank, you don’t actually have to watch ANY controversial television programme these days, you can just read around 20 tweets, and get the gist of what’s gone on.

So bloody convenient for us busy, creative people, who need something to write about!

Celebrity Big Brother housemate of 2015, 71 year old Ken Morley, an old timer actor on Coronation Street, has found himself in BIG trouble, because of his very unfortunate choice of phrase.  Ken Morely.

He’s upset or insulted just about everyone in the house, and is judged to be racist, homophobic, sexist, rude, disgusting, despicable and offensive to name but a few.

And I agree with all those opinions, he is guilty as charged.

But the issue for me, and I suspect anyone over the age of 60, is that he probably has NO idea that he is doing or saying anything offensive, and a high percentage of people who were merrily Tweeting away while the programme was being shown, had exactly the same thoughts as me.

I know a lot of ‘Ken Morley’ type men, I reckon many readers of this blog know a ‘Ken Morley’ type man too.  There is usually one in most families.

A bonkers old Grandad or an opinionated Uncle. They are everywhere. Still.

They use the same terminology today that they have been using for 50 years and in my opinion, simply don’t recognise the Politically Correct party anthem.

In the 50’s and 60’s the unacceptable, ‘N’ word that he uttered in two different forms WAS what black people were regularly called, one version was usually used to describe a black person’s colour, the other was a slang term for the same word.  And back then, it was not deemed to be particularly offensive.  Indeed, many black people used to mock their white friends, and call them ‘Chalkey’.

It’s just how it was.   But you know, I know, and the media knows that things have moved on.

These days, it is wholly offensive to use these words.  Despicable Ken knows this too, but he says what HE thinks anyway, and has perfected a curmudgeonly attitude that also says, ‘and if you don’t like it then YOU can bugger off’.

In a way, I have a certain sympathy for him. The look of sheer confusion on his face was SO indicative as he was ‘charged’ with the offending behaviour.

I wouldn’t mind betting that he was just being himself, talking to everyone in the Big Brother house, just as he talks indoors to family and friends, as he has done for decades, he either doesn’t accept he is being offensive, or simply doesn’t care!

His Celebrity Big Brother BIG mistake was underestimating the power of a group of Politically Correct ‘P’ list questionable c’lebs, who trod a fine line between bullying a pensioner, and casting themselves as judge and jury. They clearly felt it necessary to beat the drum very loudly and relentlessly to make some ‘good telly’ for the baying CBB crowds.

In my opinion, and if Twitter is anything to go by, the opinion of many viewers, is that Ken Morley was just as much a victim of offensive behaviour, as those he was accused of offending, BY those he was accused of offending.

Of course not everyone will agree with me, either way, if you’ve been watching Celebrity Big Brother, tell me what you think.


Yes you can take the wellies out of the bag, but I personally cannot take the bags out of the wellies, as on the one hand (or foot) they leak like hell and really should go to the wellington graveyard.  DSC_0242

But on the other hand (or foot) they are simply the most comfortable things I ever put on my feet.

If it was socially acceptable, I would wear my wellies at work with my black meet n greet dress, and I certainly would have worn them to our Christmas party to save myself the agony of 5 hours with my bunions wedged between two jewel encrusted straps.

Not to mention the fact that to even get that far, I’d had to purchase 3 separate pairs of jewel encrusted ‘strappy’ sandals to try to find ONE pair that could accommodate my bastard bunions.

But one out of three ain’t bad, and I worship at the shrine of  eBay.

My beloved animal print wellies have seen action and lots of it. They have moved house 3 times, and travelled with me to Spain and back twice and oh my days I’ve surely had my money’s worth out of them.

£6.00 at Primarni, and worth every single penny. However, the cost per wear has now worn out and I’m seriously pushing my luck, but what’s a girl to do.  They are like old friends.

Shit covered, leaky old friends, I grant you, but old friends nevertheless.

But I won’t lie to you,, it’s not a good look having two carrier bag handles flapping about your legs, when all those around you on your daily dog walk, including my daughter, are rocking the Hunters and the Joules of the wellie world. I look like the poor relation.

Oh yes I forgot. I AM the poor relation!

Granted, I do try to keep up with the more affluent, by selecting my carrier bags with care. Some days I go upmarket Waitrose,  but mainly you guessed it, I’m woman at Aldi.

DSC_0245But there is hope on the horizon.  I have a new admirer, who has noted that on my daily dog walks, my footwear is sadly lacking and has suggested that as he has ‘connections’ he will treat me to a new pair.

Now this ‘admirer’ and I are really only ever going to be ‘just good friends’ and the lady (me) did protest muchly about the acceptance of a gift of new boots.

BUT, as we are not talking diamonds or pearls, and needs must, I graciously informed him that I am a size 5, to which he replied, ….

‘and do you take a normal size width’………so let’s see what he has to offer……BOOTS, I mean BOOTS………


Honesty quote H60Just lately we can’t seem to avoid seeing, and reading news from around the world of the depths to which humanity can sink, so it warms the little cockles of my heart to be able to personally bring you a tiny snippet which goes to prove that there are also some kind thoughtful folk out there too.

A few days ago, at the wedding venue where I work, I picked up a phone message from an elderly sounding gentleman. He left no details, just gave his phone number and requested a call back.

Cynical old me thought to myself that he’d got the wrong number, daft old bugger, I sighed and perhaps a bit impatiently waited for him to pick up the phone as I returned his call.

After some time, he answered in the old fashioned way, with his number, something that I think you will agree we hardly ever do these days, when a simple ‘Hello’ usually suffices.

I told him who I was, and then instantly added ‘suspicious’ to my cynical side, when he proceeded to ask me if a certain named person worked at my office.

And hell yes, I went all sniffy, and curtly replied, ‘who wants to know, and why’?

Elderly man, asking about sweet 16 year old girl.  I immediately went on the defensive.  Suspiciously cynical silly me………

It turned out, that Mr F. had found our young girl Sophie’s wage packet in a local supermarket car park. He’d opened it up, found the name of her employer, and the reason for the call was that he was anxious to return her lost wages.

Honestly, I could have punched myself in the face for my initial lack of graciousness, and looking back on the conversation, predictably then went into over egging the pudding with my gratitude at Mr. F’s kindness in contacting us.

Like any other 16 year old, Sophie’s wages are hard earned and at that age, we all know every penny counts, so there was a huge sigh of relief all ways round to know that a kindly, elderly man, who possibly might also welcome a few more pennies, had been honest enough to return what had been lost.

Wouldn’t it be a good idea if there was a ‘GOOD NEWS’ paper which only gave us positive human interest stories of people doing kind things.

I for one, am getting increasingly fed up with seeing pictures of ‘victims’ clearly instructed to pose with their gloomiest face, to reinforce some equally gloomy tale of mindless acts committed against them, which, let’s face it, might give similar idea’s to people who are easily swayed.

Instead let’s see more positive examples in the media of the kindness of strangers, because as I found out it is still out there, alive and kicking.

Imagine the feel good factor going on here.  Sophie is a happy bunny as she has been reunited with her cash, and Mr. F, quite rightly, probably has a tiny little glowy feeling inside, knowing that on this occasion, his honesty was the best policy!


If you have already had your Hello Sixty moment, then trust me, on New Year’s Day it is OK to say NO to New Year Resolutions!

Really, why put yourself through it, planning to deprive yourself of this that and possibly the other. For what reason exactly?

If you are thinking of resolutely changing your ways, by only eating chocolate on a Tuesday, or vowing not to be so opinionated or gobby in 2015, who exactly you are doing it all for.

Don’t do it to please others, or because you’ve read one too many Sunday Supplements.

I’m all for self-improvement, but let’s make it something that benefits us and makes us look and feel better. Chocolate in moderation is good for you, and who wants to be boring.

Why not simply commit to doing more things to enhance your life and wellbeing instead of doing less things that experts would have us believe are bad for us. Makes much better sense to me!

So I’m going to carry on with the chocolate and being a gobby cow, but I will also resolutely make the effort to paint my nails every week, and write far more missives for my blog in 2015.

Bugger that joining the gym or cutting out the Cava, far too extreme in my view. Life’s too short!

At 60, surely we are who we are ever going to be. People love us as we are, and if they don’t then tough shit, do we really care. I don’t, and nor should you.