Wet, wet, The Habit of Art at Bexhill, Hastings herring festival

Readers of this blog often say that life in Battleaxe Land seems to be a continuous round of sunny walks and cakes in quaint tea rooms. 
     Well, not this week, I can tell you. The weather has been evil. It has rained incredibly hard for long periods. At the beginning of the week ‘Hamilton Springs’ – the  little stream that surprised us by suddenly flowing from under the house one time last winter, made a second appearance, burbling busily down the drive and out down the road.  Last year the neighbours said it hadn’t been seen for 25 years, and now it appears two years running – what does this mean? I tried to photograph it but it was hard against the light, and by the time I tried again it had dried up once more. Yesterday it was incredibly wet, and it was out there yet again…..
     Couple this wetness with still being infested with the same horrid cold/virus thing I mentioned in the last blog post, and this week has not been the best. I went to the doctors on Monday – we still go to the Harold Road Surgery opposite where we used to live before we moved in here. I did quite enjoy sitting in our little study and peering across into Dr Chisholm-Batten’s consulting room, hoping that one day he would forget to draw the blind…. This time I saw Dr Till. He was rather disturbingly friendly because he had a medical student with him – much manic laughing.  Anyway, he prescribed antibiotic eyedrops and said it was a random something-or-other virus and I’d just have to be patient. Yeah well. I can function, but with no smell, no taste and fog in head. At least my eyes have improved
    For at least two days it has been so wet that I didn’t go out at all – I don’t like that, it makes me restless and fed up.

Anna’s things

   Went to Battle one day – Anna has supplied us with a sample kit and price lists to take round any likely outlets that might be interested in stocking her range of goods.  It is not as easy as it might first appear, because she has gone for quite a high-end, cool, clean-lined minimalist aesthetic, and most house-wares/gifty type shops go for the exact opposite – all felty stuff, dried twigs, lacy bits and Cath Kidston. There is one suitable place in Battle, however, and the woman was quite enthusiastic. I had a big house-wares shop in Tenterden in mind, but heard on the local news that it has burnt down!
    Thursday evening we popped down to the Stade Hall to see an exhibition of photographs of local fisherpersons by John Cole from the Writing Group.
He’d pictured them mostly looking very cheerful – including Maggie from Maggie’s fish and chip place – did I ever say we had eventually managed to get in there to eat? We had to sneak in with the Hastings Museum Society, would you believe…..
     Friday night, to the De La Warr to see a NT film re-run from 2010, ‘The Habit of Art’, by Alan Bennett, with one of the last performances from Richard Griffiths as a rather unlikely W H Auden.  It was very good, very funny and quite rude – probably the best NT film we have seen. The plot touched on old age and approaching death – quite poignant as we, the audience now, knew one of the lead actors would die shortly. The De La Warr auditorium made a change from our sticky old local Odeon, too. We had a nice meal in the Trattoria Italiana beforehand – definitely a Battleaxe Recommended Restaurant.
      Saturday, we went to a 70th birthday party – Shirley from the WI. Had a nice time and ate too much.

Hastings Shanty singers

      Sunday, today, oh joy, it is a sparklingly sunny day. It is the Herring Festival again – seems only five minutes since I was writing about Herrings and Cattern cakes this time last year. No cattern cakes this time, no herring eating either – they are so damn repetitious. We briefly heard the Hastings Sea Shanty Singers, including Tom Kelly, husband of WI Jan. There was supposed to be a Blessing the Nets ceremony, but the vicar had got in a muddle and gone to do the Remembrance Sunday thing instead…..
     Spent a bit of time on the Stade taking photos – there is another photography competition coming up which Philosopher wants to enter – judged by John Cole. It is a small world round here….

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