Windows To The Past #WordlessWednesday #Photography

Wordless Wednesday – No words, just pictures. Allow your photo(s) to tell the story.

Photo of windows in an old castle
Is this what the past looked like?

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Are you participating in Wordless Wednesday? Leave a link to your post in the comments section, and I will visit it and leave you a comment (providing it is Wordless). I will also share the post on Twitter, providing you have connected your Twitter account to your blog.

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The Welsh Valleys #WordlessWednesday #Photography

Wordless Wednesday – No words, just pictures. Allow your photo(s) to tell the story.

Photo of the Welsh Valleys showing mountains, fields and clouds in the sky
What can you see in the Welsh Valleys?

Not sure what Wordless Wednesday is or how to participate? Click here for full details.

Are you participating in Wordless Wednesday? Leave a link to your post in the comments section, and I will visit it and leave you a comment (providing it is Wordless). I will also share the post on Twitter, providing you have connected your Twitter account to your blog.

Copyright © 2022 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Thursday Doors – Door To Another Time, Another Place

When I first noticed the street art on the wall in the photo below, it was the door next to the painting that caught my attention a lot more.

Photo of a light blue door that is open with a painting on the wall to the left of it that shows a scene of Venice
Another Time, Another Place

Blue! I love blue. But this shade of blue spoke to me. It was as if the door was inviting me to walk through into a different world – another time, another place.

The tiled floor that the door opened onto, almost matched the colours on the street art. And I wondered if the blue panel above the door is a sheet of glass that was painted the same colour as the door.

The two figures in the street art called out my name several times, but I declined their invitation to join them by walking through the door. I decided that the time and place I was currently in is right for me. I’m not ready to move on yet.

If you saw the last two doors I published for ‘Thursday Doors’, the ‘Open, Sesame!‘ door and the door to ‘The Tower Of The Ecliptic‘, the ‘Another Time, Another Place’ door is only a ten minute walk from them.

All the doors in my last three ‘Thursday Doors’ posts are located in Swansea, South Wales, in the United Kingdom. You can check them out further down on this post.

Would you have accepted the invitation from the figures in the street art to walk through the blue door to another time and another place?

Linking to the weekly photography challenge ‘Thursday Doors,’ hosted by Dan Antion who blogs at No Facilities. Click here to join hundreds of other participants with your Thursday Doors.

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Check out some of my other Thursday Doors posts

Thursday Doors – Open, Sesame!

“Open, Sesame!” is a word I’ve wanted to use since I first heard the magical phrase being spoken in the story of ‘Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves’ in Antoine Galland’s version of One Thousand and One Nights.


Ali Baba is a poor woodcutter who secretly watches as 40 thieves hide their treasure in a cave, the door to which can be only opened by the verbal command of “Open, Sesame!” He later uses this magic phrase, steals riches from the cave, and lives a prosperous life.

I’ve never spotted a door I thought ‘Open, Sesame!’ would work on. However, when I happened to stumble upon this door that begged the words ‘Open, Sesame!’ to be shouted at it, I wasn’t pleased when my vocal efforts failed. Why had those words worked for Ali Baba and not me?

Photo of a blue door decorated with some mystical symbols
Open Sesame

Nothing would open this door. I pulled it, I pushed it, but it wouldn’t open. Maybe it was locked? I couldn’t even spot a keyhole, but I loved the handles.

I never found out what was behind the door, but given the look and style of it, I imagined it led to a mystical world that could only be reached by a ride on a magic carpet. Would anyone like to join me? That is, if we can open the door.

If you saw the door I published for ‘Thursday Doors’ last week, the ‘Open, Sesame!’ door is only a short walk from ‘The Tower Of The Ecliptic‘ in Swansea, South Wales.

Let me know if you manage to open it.

What do you think is on the other-side of the ‘Open Sesame’ door?

Linking to the weekly photography challenge ‘Thursday Doors,’ hosted by Dan Antion who blogs at No Facilities. Click here to join hundreds of other participants with your Thursday Doors.

Join Hugh on social media. Click on the links below.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Thursday Doors – The Tower Of The Ecliptic

Although we’ve lived in Swansea in South Wales for the last five years, it always amazes me when we take a walk off the beaten track and come across something you had no idea was there.

This is the door to ‘The Tower Of The Ecliptic’. 

Photo of a green door that has paint peeling off it and which has a porthole in it.
Door to The Tower Of The Ecliptic

And it’s on this building that you’ll find the door. Can you spot it and any other doors?

Photo of The Tower Of The Ecliptic in Swansea
The Tower Of The Ecliptic – Swansea

If you think of me standing in front of that door taking the photo, you’ll get an idea of how big this building is. How on earth have I managed to miss a big building like this in the city where I live?

What is The Tower Of The Ecliptic? 

It’s an observatory that houses the largest telescope in Wales. Designed by architect Robin Campbell in 1989, the building opened in 1993 for the local astronomical society.

Sadly, in 2010, the building was closed to the public due to a disagreement with the Swansea City Council regarding the building’s rental terms. The Swansea Astronomical Society now holds regular observing sessions at the University College of Swansea. I’ve no idea if they took the telescope with them. Do you think they did? 

For more information about The Tower Of Ecliptic, click here.

Linking to the weekly photography challenge ‘Thursday Doors,’ hosted by Dan Antion who blogs at No Facilities. Click here to join hundreds of other participants with your Thursday Doors.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Confessions Of A Holiday Let – A True Story And Guest Post By Judith Barrow @judithbarrow77

I’m delighted to welcome Judith Barrow to my blog today, who shares a true story about the perils of holiday letting an apartment.

Having read some of Judith’s other stories of holiday letting, there’s always a humorous side to them which I believe would not only make a fanatics book, but a television comedy show.

Confessions of a Holiday Let – A true story by Judith Barrow

Will Judith’s story have you laughing as much as I did when I read it?

***

For many years we summer let the apartment which is attached to our house.

We had many visitors from other countries staying in our apartment and shared great times with them.

Couples from the USA, Australia enjoyed barbeques on the lawn; long boozy evenings of wine and slightly burned kebabs and steaks, of tall tales and laughter.

Visits to restaurants with people from France and Italy. Long walks and talks on the coastal paths with a couple from New Zealand that we’d met from there on holiday in Christchurch, followed by drinks in local pubs.

We had a German man stay with us for three weeks who’d come to participate in the Iron Man Wales event. He’d worked hard for twelve months, he told us and had to acclimatise himself to the course. Three days before the event, he caught a chest infection and had to drop out. Despite his anti-biotics, he still needed to join Husband in a double whisky that night.

Oh dear, I’m sensing a common theme here.

This is the story of our last visitor for the season one year.

He was a single man. We’ve had people come on holiday alone many times over the years and thought nothing of it. When he arrived, we quickly realised he could only speak a little English, and we couldn’t speak his language at all.

He hadn’t been in the apartment before he came to the door brandishing an empty bottle of washing up liquid.

“Oh, sorry,” I said, “I thought there was plenty in it.”

“Used it.”

An hour later, washing powder was asked for by a demonstration of vigorous scrubbing at a pair of underpants.

“There’s a box of it under the sink.”

“Used it.”

Sunday brought him to the door twice. First, with the sugar bowl.

“Used it.”

Then the salt cellar.

“I thought I’d filled it—”

“Used it.”

‘Used it’ quickly became the watchword whenever we supplied tea bags, vinegar or handing over shoe polish.

Monday, he arrived with an empty tube of glue.

“Sorry, we don’t supply glue.”

He stands, smiling, waggling the tube. “Used it.”

Husband went into his Man Drawer and produced a tube of Super Glue. Scowling. We never found out what the man wanted it for, even though Husband examined everything he could that would need to be stuck the following weekend.

Each day, at least once, the man came to the door to ask for something by waving the empty bottle, carton, container or label at us. Unlike most holidaymakers, he didn’t knock on the back door but always came round to ring the doorbell at the front. In the end, Husband and I would peer through the hall window.

“It’s Mr Used It,” one of us would say. “It’s your turn to go.” Pushing at one another. “You see what he wants this time.”

On Wednesday, he arrived with a cardboard roll.

“There are six more toilet rolls in the bathroom cabinet to the right of the hand basin,” I offered helpfully.

“Used it.”

Seven rolls of toilet paper usually last a couple the whole week. I handed over four more.

“What’s happening in there,” Husband grumbled, “do-it-yourself colonic irrigation?”

On Friday, Husband produced a list. “We should charge for this lot,” he declared. “See?”

It read like a shopping list: milk/salt/sugar/vinegar/butter/tea bags/ coffee/soap/soap powder/toilet paper/shampoo/glue/shoe polish.

“Really?” I said, even though I knew the chap had been a pest. “You’ve been keeping tabs on our guest?”

“Too true.” The husband was indignant. “We could even charge him for overuse of the battery in the doorbell.”

“Except that it’s connected to the electricity.”

“Even worse!” Husband grumped off to his shed.

Saturday morning came, and the doorbell rang. Smiling, the man put his suitcase down onto the ground and, vigorously, shook hands with both of us. He waved towards the apartment.

“Used it,” he said. “Very nice.”

***

Judith Barrow

About Judith Barrow

Judith Barrow is originally from Saddleworth, a group of villages on the edge of the Pennines, in the UK. She now lives with her husband and family in Pembrokeshire, Wales, where she has lived for over forty years.

Judith has an MA in Creative Writing with the University of Wales Trinity St David’s College, Carmarthen. She also has BA (Hons) in Literature with the Open University, a Diploma in Drama from Swansea University.

She is a Creative Writing tutor for Pembrokeshire County Council and holds private one to one workshops on all genres.

She has written all her life and has had short stories, poems, plays, reviews and articles published throughout the British Isles. She only started to seriously write novels after having breast cancer twenty years ago.

When not writing or teaching, she enjoys doing research for her writing, walking the Pembrokeshire coastline and reading and reviewing books.

Connect with Judith

Blog

Twitter

Facebook

Amazon

Judith’s Latest Book – The Heart Stone

The Heart Stone by Judith Barrow

1914 – and everything changes for Jessie on a day trip to Blackpool. She realises her true feelings for her childhood friend, Arthur. Then just as they are travelling home from this rare treat, war is declared.

Arthur lies about his age to join his Pals’ Regiment. Jessie’s widowed mother is so frightened of the future, she agrees to marry the vicious Amos Morgan, making Jessie’s home an unsafe place for her.

Before he leaves, Arthur and Jessie admit their feelings and promise to wait for each other. Arthur gives Jessie a heart-shaped stone to remember him. But with Arthur far away, their love leaves Jessie with a secret that will see her thrown from her home and terribly abused when she can hide the truth no longer. Faced with a desperate choice between love and safety, Jessie must fight for survival, whatever the cost.

Click on the book cover to buy The Heart Stone

More Books from Judith

Saga of the Howard family
The Memory

Click on the book covers to buy Judith’s books.

My thanks to Judith for writing this guest post.

If you have any questions or comments for Judith, please leave them in the comments section. She’d be delighted to hear from you.

Do you have a true story you’d like to share on my blog? Contact me via the ‘Contact Hugh’ button on the menubar.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

How To Spend A Restful Few Minutes Over A Cup Of Coffee

I’d just sat down to a nice cup of coffee.

Two sachets of sugar are on the saucer. The teaspoon looks rusty and dirty from too many washes in the dishwasher and is not being wiped clean! Never mind, the coffee looks good, and it’s a beautiful day here on Mumbles seafront.

I take my first sip, and then it begins.

“Hello, Brian, can you hear me……I’m on the mobile……can you hear me, Brian?”

Bit of a pause.

“Brian, can you……what?…….what did you say, Brian?”

Longer pause.

“I’m ringing to find out if…….Brian, are you still there?”

Bit of a pause.

“OK, I’m waving now. Can you see me?”

Pause

“Well, I’m waving. Hold on, I’ll get Margaret to wave.”

Margaret starts to wave her hand.

“Can you see us?”

Pause

“Well, I can’t understand it; we’re both waving. Are you there, Brian? Can you hear me?”

Pause

“Yes, I was ringing to find out if it was working?”

Pause

“No, I said, I was ringing…….Brian, can you hear me? Perhaps you can’t hear what I’m saying?”

Pause.

“OK, I’ll get Margaret to wave again, hold on.”

Margaret waves again, and a small girl passing by, licking an ice cream cone, waves back at her.

“Can you see her waving, Brian? I’m waving now as well. Can you see us?”

Pause.

“No, I’ve been to Spec Savers, and my eyes are OK. I wasn’t ringing about that; I was ringing about the……”

Longer pause.

“No, my eyes are fine, they said I could continue with the glasses I’ve had for the last……..hello…Brian, can you hear me? Are you still there, Brian?”

He looks at the phone.

“I think he’s gone, Margaret.”

He puts the phone back to his ear.

“Brian, are you still there?”

By this time, I quickly gulped my coffee down, wanting to get away, but then he looked at the phone again, and this time he closed it up as it was one of those clam style phones. I thought about getting another coffee and maybe a cake to continue with my people watching, but then his phone rang.

“Hello…Brian, is that you? Can you hear me?”

Not wanting to find out what he wanted to know was working, Toby and I made a rapid departure.

We enjoyed a lovely quiet walk home along the beach without the sound of any mobiles phones going off.

Toby on the beach

Have you ever overheard a one-sided conversation? What was it about?

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