Saturday, 29th October, 2022

[Day 957]

Today was dull and overcast but not particularly cold. We were a little delayed this morning because I had some problems updating the payment system on a photos website which acts as a host to our 50th wedding anniversary photographs and videos. Fortunately, I found a solution to this as well as eventually locating the specialised and personalised name that I have acquired in order to access the website and which I had temporarily forgotten. Whilst I was at it, I thought I would have a dig around my system and my websites to discover some of my original wedding photos and music. Some five years ago now, I retrieved our book of wedding photos (all in black and white in 1967) and successfully digitised them all. But I had a massive stroke of luck because out of the photo album fell a little page of lined notepaper which was the organists original notes of the music that was played. We had remembered some of these pieces but not all. But, armed with the list of music, I could then go onto the web and find MP3 tracks of music that could have well been the original so this, at the time, was a very successful venture. However, by putting the music tracks on one website and the wedding photos on a rolling display on another website, it is possible to see the original wedding photos with the ‘original’ music playing in the background. This is evidently not the same as a video of the original but is a very good substitute which means that if anyone is sufficiently interested, they can see the original photos of which there are only 13 in number but accompanied by the mp3 ‘soundtrack’ with some program notes on each of the six pieces of music that we had chosen and some background to each one. I do not make a habit of looking at these websites very often but it does mean that I tend to forget the URL’s so it is rather good to refresh my memory once in a while. To sort of test this out, I got J S Bach’s ‘Wachet Auf‘ to play along whilst I was writing this blog but I still have to remember how to move from track to track.

Once we had eventually got ourselves going, as it were, we picked up our newspaper and made it to the park. We didn’t bump into of our regulars in the park but this was not a great surprise to us so after our elevenses we got home and made a pasta type meal out of bits and peces that we had in the fridge. Saturday afternoons are always a little quiet because we start to go to church at 5.30 and then have a bit of supper when we return at about 7.00pm before we settle down to either watch an opera or another video that takes our fancy. Tonight is the night when the clocks go back and this means that in the afternoons and the evenings it will be really dark, to which I do not look forward. At this time of year,though, I cannot wait until December 21st has come and gone as it is means it will then be getting lighter at 1-2 minutes a day. We have quite a few social engagements throughout the month of November to help the autumn pass a little more quickly. Thinking ahead to Christmas, though, I have managed to secure a booking at our favourite hotel in Harrogate not in the week before Christmas which would be horrific but in the week before that. We have decided to extend our stay from our normal three days to four so we may be able to see more family members this time around. In fact, given the success of the ‘family tea’ which we had for my sister’s 80th birthday, we could do worse but repeat this little event but I will consult a bit further on this.

Earlier in the day, I had been in email correspondence with one of my Hampshire friends who had accepted my offer to stay overnight with us in late November – he is breaking his journey in order to pay to visit to Leek in Staffordshire to research some family history. Because a distant cousin of ours who lives in Australia and has a lot of reseearch on my father’s side of the family, we will probably have quite a lot to share with each other. My mother’s side of the family tree is somewht murky but I can disclose the interesting but tangled story of my mother’s side of the family tree when my friend come to visit.

The Chancellors Autumn Statement has now been upgraded to a ‘full budget’ and will take place on November 17th. It will be a model of financial rectitude, not to say austerity. One way or another, the Chancellor is going to have to find at least £40bn to fill the black hole and another £10bn to reassure the markets. Rumours at this stage is that nothing – Defence, NHS, pensions – will be spared so we shall shortly experience Austerity Mark II (Mark I being the Osborne version some Chancellors ago)