Sunday, 26 December 2010

All smiles in The Tynemouth Lodge

After a Christmas lunch, there's nothing better than a few glasses of real ale to settle the stomach. So YC deemed it prudent to repair to the Tynemouth Lodge with his Duff cousins to see if the Deuchars IPA was on good form. Readers will be relieved to hear that it was.

The soothing qualities of the ale were particularly welcome for his cousins: for reasons best known to himself, Michael had cooked the sprouts in a curry sauce. Yikes.

Saturday, 25 December 2010

Ho Ho Ho

What happened when Santa's cat swallowed a ball of wool? She had mittens.

This Christmas cracker was brought to you by Richard Cox and family.

As Santa says when he's gardening, hoe hoe hoe...

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Monday, 13 December 2010

Helvellyn in the snow

YC had a trot round some Lakeland hills today. Parking at Glenridding, he headed up Sheffield Pike (a previously, for him, unclimbed 2,000 footer), before heading over Helvellyn. A misty cold December day is clearly the way to enjoy Helvellyn in splendid isolation (see photo left). Eventually the cloud did break giving a beautiful view over a frozen Grisedale Tarn (photo right). After all that exercise, YC thought it prudent to rehydrate with some Deuchars at the Tynemouth Lodge - and very good it was too.

Saturday, 4 December 2010

what you might have missed

Birtley News has been merrily recording news and views from around the globe over the past year. But in case you might have missed some of it, here's a resume of what's been happening.

YC has been fellrunning at events such as The 2 Breweries Race, and venturing into Scotland for a mountain marathon. He's not the only one to catch the running bug. Susan Miller has been hitting the trails in South Africa, whilst Ian and Mitchell Miller have been pounding the roads in Canada.

The fine craft Stella Genesta has been taking to the water on the Norfolk & Suffolk Broads - with compulsory porridge and prunes for good measure.

There have been family celebrations this year. James Duff reached his 40th birthday (YC will get there one day - joke), and Joe Chillingworth married Anna in Somerset.

We said farewell to Phil Kelly (artist in Mexico) and Reg Webster (the man with the knapsack on his back).

Finally, YC has been getting in a healthy dose of realism (some might harshly say humbug!) by reminding readers that it's still only Advent.

It's Advent (not Christmas)

Winter has come early to Tynemouth this year. Here's the view from YC's back window taken on Thursday morning. The odds of a White Christmas must be shortening rapidly. But on that note, YC would like to remind readers that it's not Christmas yet. Despite the shops offering unalloyed festive materialism, Classic FM unleashing the carols, and office parties getting underway, readers should note that tomorrow is only the second Sunday of Advent. As YC's nephew Matthew pointed out last week, Advent means getting ready for the birth of Jesus.

Here's an Advent hymn to get you in the mood. Keen theological scholars (of which BN's readership has many) will no doubt point out that this hymn looks forward to the second coming of Christ - another of the themes of Advent.