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Flybe to Rome

7 Oct

In my head I hear Frank Sinatra croon “Fly Me to the Moon. ..” Ok so I’m more Flybe to Rome but hum along with me I bet you can’t help yourself now can you?

Anyway I digress from my point, which was this…. Time out was required and it had to involve minimal time on the roads. Hence our wonderfully easy and pain free travel from Cardiff to Rome using Flybe

And even though I am sat writing this at Bistro Fiumicino because of a 2HR 20MIN delay for the flight home., I still feel pretty chilled. Fiumicino airport is light bright and airy. Flybe advised us of the delay straight away  (although not the reason) and provided vouchers for food and drink.  And we’ve (have Hubby in tow) just spent 4 wonderful days in THE most amazing capital city.  Plus, when we do eventually touch down in the UK, it will be in Cardiff which is a teeny-weeny easy- peasy airport to navigate and a simple bus transfer to our sons house before a relatively short, but certainly straightforward drive home.

So, the reason for the delay was not the weather in Cardiff.. I thought this a bit odd because, at worst, Cardiff weather might be a bit ‘dreary’… I mean it was pretty improbably that Hurricane Blodwen had hit.

I found out because of the prompt (and unexpected ) response I received to a tweet I made to Flybe

So ‘Thankyou’ Sophie from Flybe. Problems can’t always be avoided.  Sometimes they happen and it’s how we handle them that matters. This is when a company can shine or fall flat on it’s face. It’s that monumental component of business that most businesses throw by the wayside in their pursuit of new customers and profits. However, keeping an existing customer is much more cost effective and I’ll cerainly be using Flybe again. Customer service is EVERYTHING….

 

CONVERSATION BETWEEN BERNI_BENTON AND FLYBE #5875152

  • 545574489's profile image

    Berni_Benton @Berni_Benton 

     so what’s the true reason for the 2hr+ delay to 11:25 flight BE4542? Rome blaming Cardiff weather

    flybe @flybe 

    Replying To: 

    Hi Berni, thank you for getting in touch and I am sorry to hear that your flight has been delayed. I have checked this and can see that the delay has been caused by a late incoming aircraft, the previous flight Cardiff to Rome suffered at technical fault this morning. Your flight is now estimated to depart at 13.40 local time. I am extremely sorry for the inconvenience caused – Sophie

    Berni_Benton @Berni_Benton 

     Thankyou for the info. Better have another proper cappuccino

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Please don’t bring me flowers….

31 Jul

My attitude to cut flowers is funny old thing.  After all I love gardening, dead-heading, weeding, pruning.  I lo20170731_183610ve seeing the garden in full bloom and I’m aware that some flowers need picking to encourage more flowers to grow.  Plus sometimes the rain, wind or our chickens damage a flower stalk so I’ll pick it up and stick it in a vase.

On the whole though, I’m not a cut flower person.  I mean they look lovely in a vase in someone elses house in full bloom on a visit or in an arrangement at a wedding or on a table in a restaurant.  But when I actually have them at home they just make me sad.  They arrive at their peak and then you plonk them in water with a bit of food to prolong their life and you just watch them wither and die.  Its tragic.  Not to mention that in the confines of the house either, and sometimes, both Hubby and I will have an allergic reaction to the scent which is often quite overpowering when indoors.

I remember sometime back writing about my wishes for end of life.  I wasn’t being morbid but I felt I should document the things I feel strongly about.  One of my key requests was to have snowdrops, crocuses, and daffodil bulbs buried with me and absolutely no cut flowers.  I don’t want my relatives and friends coming back to dead flowers, a bit too much morbid symbolism.  But with bulbs they will flower and multiply year on year, and my plot, under what ever tree wherever that will be, will live on and bring joy and colour long after I’m gone.

funnily enough i also have a problem with house plants.  In a garden I will nurture and tend, water and maintain but the minute a plant is in a pot in my house I look at it with bemusement as it droops or withers.  I never remember to water it, or re-pot it or feed it.  I’m an indoor plant murderer (remember that should you ever feel inclined to gift me a plant – if it has to live indoors I WILL KILL IT!!! ).  It’s a shame really because I actually love orchids but once the initial flowers die off I have absolutely no clue how to tend it to ensure I get new life in future years.  I’ve had two sad-looking specimens on top

of the piano for a year!  I kid you not, in fact I am going to provide photographic evidence right now…

see, I told you!

 

 

Our garden here at Cerdyn Villa B&B

3 Little Buttons

Lucy At Home

Today can go poke it…

7 Jul

im_having_a_bad_dayMost days you will find me in ‘fine fettle’; rubbing along nicely with the world; positive outlook; pretty confident in my abilities; very happy with my lot.

Today is not one of those days.

Today I am over-tired, stressed and tearful.  Every single action is a slog, every single tiny request is overwhelming. civility in communication is a struggle.

I’m sure I’m not unique.  I skip along with my multi-faceted life, doing a million and one different jobs, perfectly happily.  I juggle an overloaded diary and still enjoy a night out.  And then, sometimes, I don’t.

Today I woke up after a fitful night – too hot, lots of irritating midge bites and a fly buzzing around the room all night.  I woke up with a start an hour before I needed to, with a heavy heart and a disturbed gut.  And then the day assaulted me. It went from nought to sixty in record time and I could barely breathe from the force of it.  Hubby trying to leave to take my car  (a classic, 1968 Hillman Husky named Ffloyd) the 13 miles for its MOT only to discover that it had a completely flat battery and needed push starting; B&B guests an hour earlier than expected for breakfast AND at the exact same moment as the car pushing incident; teen son trying to pack and get away for a long road trip in his classic 1965 singer Chamois and all the last-minute questions and requests that involved.

This followed an exceptionally busy week.  An exceptionally busy diary for the next three weeks.  And a phone call from the guys who manages a flat I own near where we used to live saying that the boiler needs replacing…. The “we need £3000  out of thin air by tomorrow” type nightmare that brings you out in a blind panic.

So this afternoon I went for a nap.  Woke up, felt worse.  Not heard from son as no phone signal in my own house and he’s probably not there yet so there’s nothing to be told.   Ffloyd did pass his MOT. normally that would have me euphoric.

Room changes, last-minute bookings, ironing.  This whole summer, rather than seeing us through winter will pay for that bloody boiler , in that bloody flat, that I wish I never bought but can’t sell.  I must be the only person with Essex based property that suffers with negative equity.  NEVER, listen to those TV programs that tell you its a great deal to buy off plan.  Been stuck with this millstone for 12 years now.  Its one of those “luxury complexes” that turned out to be a bag of shit; built cheap by cowboys and has suffered from fire, flood and plague of locusts (well cockroaches…and no I am not making it up), in the years I’ve had it; never mind destructive tenants; illegal immigrants and enforcement officers battering down the doors (at my expense).  I could go on; but I can feel myself building to a crescendo of self destruct.

Today I’ve shouted, and shed tears.

Tomorrow is another day.  May my more positive and happy-go-lucky normality resume.  In the meantime, today can go poke it.

We will always have Humanity..

25 May

What is it with this need to hate? People hating people because they are sick or disabled and need support; because they need help housing and feeding their family;  because they have chosen here as a safe haven from war and tyranny; because their homes have been destroyed and they have asked for our help to find a place; because they can’t find work; because they dress differently; have different coloured skin; different accents; different sexual desires; different houses to pray to their god(s). How petty do these sound? .. say it ‘ I’m afraid of you because you pray in a mosque”; “I hate you because you like to wear women’s clothes” ; “I hate you  a because you are too ill to work and have sought help”; ” I fear you because irrespective of the fact you were born here, three generations ago your ancestors came here from….”…. It’s takes a crazy and sad person to think like this.  

If you want to be angry, be angry about the corporation that control supply and demand across the globe; be angry about a system that makes the wealthy wealthier but keeps the poor poorer; be angry about our political disregard  for the longevity of our planets resources; about the millions of people starving, raped,beaten, mutilated ,murdered in corrupt regimes; about the misguided individuals with pathetic weak minds who follow radical extremism; about those who target the susceptible and innocent and abuse their trust, sex traffickers, slave  traders etc.

Terrible atrocities happen across the globe on a daily basis. We as humans often ignore or don’t hear about the those horrific incidents outside of our own country.  In light of the terrible happenings in Manchester this week a friend of mine wrote this:

I wanted to say something – and its so hard because everyone is hurting but I hope you get where I’m coming from if you read this – now is not the time for opinions on who or why – its not a time for division or conspiracy theories or even politics …..

….Humans are suffering every day at the hands of evil. Simple as. We are led to believe that we are separate. That somehow borders and seas and distance make us ‘different’. But love and compassion and humanity should recognise no such borders. I am not ‘British’ or ‘European’ or anything else. I AM TERRAN. I AM OF THIS EARTH.

ALL suffering hurts my heart.

ALL injustice makes my soul weep.

And so as I stand with Manchester 22.05.17 and I hold in my heart all those who are suffering and the 22 souls lost and the 50 plus injured and the people who have seen such terrible things I also stand with Deir ez-Zur  21.05.17 and the 15 lost and the 60 plus injured – most of whom were also women and children.

Baghdad – 20.05.17 – 35 killed, 45 injured.

Tuz Khurma. Maiduguri. Hamah. Mastung…

The list goes on.

I’ve not listed which countries these places are on purpose – because an innocent soul is an innocent soul and leaves a hole where once there was light.

Hold your loved ones tight. Love love love. Be kind. Be compassionate. Educate yourself. Help others on each and every occasion that you can.

I love all the light being sent to Manchester today…what power, what beauty.

Imagine if we could send out that wave each day to each person who needed it – how powerful we truly would become.

‘There is more that unites us than separates us’

Look at us all on that tiny sphere. So fragile and yet so very strong. Separateness is an illusion used to control us. I send love to my brothers and sisters all over this beautiful planet today and everyday

Andrew Burnham, Mayor of Manchester, quite rightly said that the “Manchester terrorist no more represents Muslims than Jo Cox’s killer represents white people”.

Exactly.
Ignorance and laziness cause people to condemn an entire race, religion or country because of the act of the odd nutter/extremist… this plays right into the hands of every extremist movement, creating fear, hate and intolerance within communities… we are all people of the Earth , we may elect to follow a religion (generally based on which country we were raised and what our parents believed), we may follow a cultural behaviours based on the same, but these evil behaviours are not the result of any religious scriptures or cultural behaviours, they are the behaviours of weak-minded, warped individuals with a twisted sense of reality and a total disregard for humanity… we must stand together, arm in arm with our neighbours, irrespective of their skin colour, their dress code, their age, their sexuality, their religious beliefs or their ancestry….
We must not let the media propaganda (media terrorism) warp our minds into believing their rhetoric… Everyone is an individual being of our earth.

My only faith is the one I hold for Humanity; that humans are predominantly compassionate and kind and that we can, as humankind, drive out this culture of intolerance and hate without resorting to vilification of entire groups … we must stand together and give of our hearts, share of our minds and support of our being…
I may not have the best words or the most articulate response, but as always, I speak straight from my heart and mind and these are the only words I can find for the horrendous atrocities of this week… and I speak not just of what happened in Manchester …

Oops….

8 May

So my blog a day for two weeks went belly up when I missed yesterday but I do have a good excuse. .. well a reasonably acceptable one anyway.

Yesterday was glorious weather wise and I had several gardening jobs for local customers that needed my attention.  I’d fallen a little behind due to not wanting  to garden on Saturday what with it being National Naked Gardening Day; I honestly felt that my elderly clients and the passing traffic could do without it!

Anyway it was with glorious sunshine and fully clothed I cleared two big gardening jobs yesterday and managed a couple of hours in my own garden too.

However, in the first garden I’d been bitten 3 times by red ants. By the time I finished the second job my arm from elbow to wrist was swollen to twice its size. I took antihistamine as soon as I got home, but it was really hot, red and tight.

I put a bicarbonate of soda paste poultice on it to try to neutralise the formic acid but mainly to cool it and reduce the aching. But it didn’t help and being my writing/ typing hand I just didn’t get a blog written.

As you can see, I’m writing now. Swelling has halved, itching has tripled, and bite points have blistered; but a course of steroids and stronger antihistamines are doing their thing.

And after that tale of woe I owe you something cwtchy from Cerdyn Villa…

 

Hitchhiking across the UK

5 May

Thumbing a lift? A thing of the past?

Edmund King, AA President and former hitchhiker, said: “Sadly we appear to have reached the end of the road for hitchhiking. With only 1% of drivers saying that they would definitely stop to give someone a lift, and only 1% of respondents having hitchhiked in the last year, drivers have given a thumbs down to hitchhiking.

“The older generation are more likely to have thumbed a lift and hence are more likely to pick up hitchhikers. Perhaps cheaper coach travel, growth in car ownership, online lift sharing sites and personal safety fears have all contributed to the decline in hitchhiking​”

A few weeks ago I picked up a hitchhiker. I didn’t tell anyone I’d done it until about a week later when I mentioned it in passing to a friend.

The reaction was one of shock and concern. Wasn’t I afraid? What if he’d been a murderer or rapist? Do I often pick up hikers?!?

When I was in Israel ( nearly 30 years ago) where they have conscription, young solders got around either by bus or hiking. They’d be ‘casual’ whilst in their uniform… shirt hanging out, several top buttons undone, sleeves rolled up, gun slung over their shoulder.  They would hitch from bus stops and drivers were obliged to pick up hitching soldiers. As a back packer, I knew that if I wanted a lift all I had to do was hike from a bus stop and I’d get a lift with a soldier. I never thought twice about accepting a lift.

When I got back to the UK I was about 24 and I’d regularly offer hitchhikers lifts. Then a few years on I got caught up in the fear culture and stopped. I felt sad and embarrassed passing someone in the rain but was too nervous to stop.

Since moving to Wales, I’ve regained my perspective on life! I’ve remembered the majority of people are good. I’ve remembered the joy of helping out a stranger.

It felt great last week picking up the lad I did. Turns out his car was written off and so he’d been leaving early and hiking to work.

I can understand why people these days are both less likely to hitch and less likely to pick up hitchhikers, but I do think it’s a bit sad that it’s disappearing in the UK. I’ll continue to be one of the 12% of people in Wales prepared to pick up a hiker . What are your thoughts on the subject?

http://www.theaa.com/motoring_advice/news/hitch-hiking-at-the-end-of-the-road.html

 

Life: Mine: It’s full: Very full

9 Apr

15016351_1247664865307784_3338542209251484497_oI’m a woman.  I’m self-employed.  I’m fairly ‘alternative’ and, am told, slightly ‘eccentric’.  I wear many hats.  Not all suit me…

Life gets confusing and chaotic……

Here’s perhaps why….

13912605_1298769933474183_1529318925936773135_n???????????????????????????????I’m an artist, I occasionally do pet portraits, I often do stained glass commissions. I do have an Etsy shop, which I manage in a very ad hoc way.  I promise to keep a stock of my designs but the artistic bit of me is really only interested in the bespoke commissions and one-off designs , so I struggle to find time to hold stock.  So I make my designs to order.

20170322_123236I teach stained glass.  It’s a new string to my bow.  I love it.  I find it immensely satisfying and it brings me huge amount of joy.

I run a B&B.  This involves being really nice to (mostly) lovely people, talking (a lot), keeping the place clean, ironing sheets (even though I’d never iron my own) and cooking really gorgeous breakfasts.  I do this with my hubby.  We love working together.  It works.  Coming to stay at Cerdyn Villa is like staying with friends (so we’re told) and that, my lovelies was the plan so things her are going well

breakfast

I manage our business website and various tourism pages on social media.  Some of these pages… “www.cerdynvilla.wales” is our lifestyle hub (ooo fancy!), it leads you off to “Pink Butterfly Art and Glass” – my Etsy shop; “Pink Butterfly at Cerdyn Villa” -our FB page combining our B&B and my art; http://www.cerdynvilla.co.uk – our B&B website; “rose-tinted Ramblings” – my blog; “Home of Bog Snorkelling” – the tourism FB page for our town; “@Berni_Benton” – my twitter account

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m a gardener – I look after six people’s gardens.  Mostly elderly ladies, some of whom like to garden with me and its as much about the company as the weeding and pruning.  I LOVE weeding (does that make me odd?  I don’t care, I LOVE IT!)

peanut butter cheesecakeI work shifts in the local cafe and cover for the owners if they go away.  Sometimes I even bake some cakes!

I blog.  For fun, but mainly to keep me sane and promote my work(s) (not necessarily at the same time). Its called Rose Tinted Rambling, but you know that because you are here now.  It’s mainly a brain dumping ground.  Most thoughts evolve whilst I’m either ironing or weeding and I can’t rest until they’re typed.  So there! I try to categorise to avoid you haven’t to read the ‘boring shit’  but I’d say there’s pretty much something for everyone here.

I  advocate for a local elderly lady and manage her finances. It’s my ‘pay-it-forward” – we should all have one.  It’s great to give back.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I volunteer, Working to help run the weird and wacky events in Llanwrtyd – I am the commentator at the World Bog Snorkelling and Man v Horse.  They gave me the job because, and I quote “if the PA system breaks I’d still be loud enough for everyone to hear”.  Hubby said he could hear me from the house last year and I was three-quarters  of a mile away….

… I hasten to add the mic was working that day.

I am responsible for keeping our household accounts.  Although hubby takes my figures and does the scary bit of filling in the returns and sending them off

I do all the food shopping, planning and feeding. Sometimes I do this well.  Other times we eat out!

I ‘manage’ a tenanted house with 5 flats.  Not for fun, at all, but because the landlords were neighbours but now live in Spain.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We keep hens, that means they have a house that needs cleaning

11182523_1594413547510404_4888338233642762611_oI’m a mum………

………………………………………….

……..in my spare time (!!)

I do a bit of yoga and belly dancing

a vision in red

I look after my own garden (sometimes I get dressed before I start)

11168862_1046829525379356_5330321855820313332_oI’m a member of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party (say hello to Lady Lily the Pink).  I even stood for the Welsh Assembly

I soak in a bubble bath

I enjoy a good live band

I read the occasional book.  mostly I read blogs  and watch TED talks

I snuggle on the sofa with my Hubby and watch Netflix

I play board games with my boy(s) – son and hubby

I eat out with friends

I eat in with friends

I drink out with friends

I drink in with friends

Sometimes I just drink…….

I love my life, but planning is difficult.  Impossible actually.  So it appears chaotic.  and sometimes it really is.  It also appears disorganised.  But actually it rarely is.  ….

….it just feels it

Logistically its a massive challenge.  It’s so far removed from the 9-5 life I used to lead.  I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

diaryofanimperfectmum

15 Things That Don’t Require Qualifications or Talent

25 Aug

love this list of positive and fundamentally important skills

Suzie Speaks

imageWith the impending GCSE results due out tomorrow, the topic was already trending in the early hours of this morning on Twitter with thousands of teenagers anxiously waiting to see how they had fared, many of them already dismayed at the fact that grade boundaries for certain subjects had been raised… again.

At school, I was a high achiever who enjoyed the process of learning. I worked hard with the belief that qualifications were the be all and end all to everything that would make my life successful and happy in the future, and even after doing my A levels and a degree, my GCSE exams still remain as one of the scariest and most stressful experiences I’ve ever had.

And yet, eighteen years of life after leaving school (and spending ten years working as a teacher) has made me realise that, while qualifications on paper are important, there is…

View original post 716 more words

Chocolate, Peanut Butter Cheesecake

11 Jul

Whole Earth Foods sponsor the “wonder-fuel challenge”, Man v Horse Marathon, held here in my home town of Llanwrtyd Wells.  I was very lucky to acquire a case of crunchy peanut butter from the very lovely ladies who were clearly “powered by nuts” at this June’s event!

Here’s what I made with my first jar

peanut butter cheesecake

If you fancy making it yourself, this is how I made it

1 jar crunchy whole earth peanut butter

1 packet (300g) Aldi dark chocolate digestives (other brands are available!)

150g dark chocolate

100g salted butter (you don’t have to use salted but i just love salty Welsh butter )

440g Philadelphia cream cheese (or other brand)

130g castor sugar

1.crumb the biscuits in a blender ( or in a sealed bag using a rolling-pin as a hammer – great if you’re feeling frustrated, angry or need a workout!)

2. place the butter in a none metallic bowl larger than is needed (as you are going to add your crumbs in a minute), and microwave to melt (this will only take 30-60 seconds)

3.mix the crumbed biscuits into the butter.

4.press the butter/biscuit mix into the base of a loose bottom tin (I think mine was 23″,if yours is smaller your base will be thicker and your cheesecake deeper but that’s ok)

5.put this in the fridge to cool

6.melt the chocolate in the microwave in a large none metallic bowl, mix in the peanut butter (yes, all of it!), cream cheese and sugar

7.beat the double cream until it is relatively stiff (soft peaks) and stir into the mix

8. spread this onto biscuit/butter base

9. if you want, grate some extra dark chocolate over the top

10. chill (grab yourself a glass of wine whilst he cheesecake rests in the fridge)

11.Slice , serve, savour!

Do you have a wonder-fuel recipe to share?  Please leave it on my blog if you do.

13419248_10153512559133204_8099127535718931618_n (2)

 

 

 

 

 

i’m crazy-mad with anger, frustration and confusion….

15 May

I can’t effing believe anything!! My head is fucking screaming.  I feel like I’m going crazy.  Seriously WHAT THE FUCK!!!!

minor operation Monday morning last.  sinuses.  no big deal.  Twenty minutes under a general anesthetic.  Discharged the next morning.  Warned of occasional nose bleeds.  Handed a batch of pain relief meds, some swabs, a letter for my doctor, advice on how to ‘nasal douche’, and told to not do anything too strenuous for a couple of weeks.

Okey dokey. Piece of piss.

WRONG!

WHO THE FUCK forgot to mention , never mind understated, the after effects of general anesthetic.  Even the little bitty one I had.  FOR FUCKS SAKE!  Excuse the bloody swearing but I’m down-right furious with paralysis of my brain.  I mean where the fuck has it gone?  I feel trippy(I imagine ). psychotic (i imagine), schizophrenic (i imagine), confused, lost, scared, sick and down right INEPT.

I can’t bloody function!!  I’ve turned into a MAN (sorry – now about to offend 50% of the population). BUUUUT, single track , single task ,single-minded (at best) brain function completely and utterly SUCKS.

Its shit.  Honestly – I can’t even make foUr people breakfast at the same time. GRRRRRRR

Honestly.  I feel light-headed.  I feel confused.  I’m having nightmares. hallucinations.  I can’t work out what I’ve done and what I’ve imagined (dreamt ) I’ve done.  Night sweats. I have moments when i can only describe as ‘out of body’..  I can’t focus. The frustration is driving me insane.  Or has the anesthetic driven me insane.  I know I was a bit quirky before.  But Christ I could do one thing and think about something else.  I could fry an egg and microwave some bloody baked beans at the same time.  This is SIX DAYS.  several somebodies cheered me up by suggesting it could be MONTHS until ‘normality ‘ resumed.

why don’t they tell you?!?!  NHS listen up . THIS IS A MASSIVE BIG DEAL.  ITS A LIFE STOPPER. A GAME CHANGER. A MIND FUCKER.  PREPARE PEOPLE FOR IT. FOR CHRIST’S SAKE!!!!  AAARRRGGHHHHHHHHHHH