HelenEdith's Blog

The minutiae of my life, plus website updates and book reviews

Archive for July, 2007

Entry for July 29, 2007 – Greenwich Park Bandstand

Posted by HelenEdith on July 29, 2007

This afternoon I joined the Beckenham Concert Band on the bandstand in Greenwich Park.

We played from 2pm to 5pm with a half hour break in the middle.

Fortunately the weather decided to be kind to us, and we had a good audience spread around the park. The organised ones had brought something to sit on, and the rest just sat on the grass.

My bassoon attracted a certain amount of attention, with several people coming up to the bandstand and asking me what it was.

The picture was taken by Stephen during a trombone solo, for which Trevor the trombonist was standing up.

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Website update: Tower Bridge lift and other nearby sights

Posted by HelenEdith on July 28, 2007

I’ve got a few more pictures off Yahoo Photos this afternoon. I had a complete Tower Bridge lift on there, taken from actually on the bridge, which could be run as a slideshow. Now it’s on my website in its own animated page. 🙂 I added in some pictures of the paddle steamer Waverley, who was visiting London that day, and was in fact the reason why I was in the Tower Bridge area with a camera; plus pictures of a couple of other pleasure craft and a rather pleasant view of the City of London’s skyline.

Click here to view them. I don’t recommend clicking on the animation unless you have a broadband connection, as it’s 41 full-sized images long!

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Website update: Garden Bird Pictures, Winter/Spring 2006

Posted by HelenEdith on July 28, 2007

In my continuing efforts to remove my content from Yahoo Photos before it closes in October, I’ve just “rescued” the pictures I took of some of the visitors to our back yard bird feeders during the winter and spring of 2006.

Click here to view them.

As well as the Greater Spotted Woodpecker, whose photo appears at the top of this blog entry, the other “exotic” visitor is the ring necked parakeet. Here’s a thumbnail picture of one of the images on the webpage:

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Entry for July 27, 2007 – TGIF

Posted by HelenEdith on July 27, 2007

I’m definitely in TGIF mode. I am so relieved to have made it through the week.

The week has been reasonably successful, I suppose. I’ve been working on data problems. They always seem to crop up near month-end, and they’re usually urgent. This week I had six different ones on the go.

On Monday, I’m going to work at home. After spending three hours on the Greenwich Park Bandstand on Sunday afternoon, I don’t think I’ll be up for a commute on Monday, so I’ve teed up home-working for the day.

And no, much of what I did this week couldn’t be described as “programming”. I did look at some programs to help me understand how the data came to be the way it was, but most of the time I was looking for patterns in data or comparing two sets for the odd man out in a reconciliation. I do enjoy work like that, but I could have done with not having to compress so many disparate database problems into a single week!

…and now it’s the weekend and I don’t have to worry about people’s Ledger problems for a whole two days! 😀

Today’s picture has nothing to do with data. The sailing ship is Stavros S Niarchos, a sailing training vessel who was paying a visit to London when I was up in town a couple of weeks ago. She (or should that be “He”) is a sister ship to Prince William, who has visited London during the last couple of years. Click here for some pictures I took of Prince William when that vessel visited London. You may notice that the two look very similar and appear to sport identical paint jobs.

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Entry for July 23, 2007 – Sort-of famous

Posted by HelenEdith on July 23, 2007

The 28th July edition of “Amateur Photographer” arrived today, and there on page 5 in the Snapper’s Diary was a picture of mine! 🙂

“While on a visit to London recently, I saw a building in Leadenhall Street, next to the Aviva Plaza, that is apparently being demolished from the ground up, and I had to have some pictures of it. It demonstrates how all the strength of a modern building is in its core, but it still looks very odd – something like a giant tree-house for City gents to play in!”

My published picture is today’s picture. If you want to see some of the other pictures I took the same day, click here.

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Entry for July 22, 2007 – Band at Coolings Nursery

Posted by HelenEdith on July 22, 2007

I had an outing with the Beckenham Concert Band today. We played in Arthur’s Garden at Coolings Nurseries in Knockholt, Kent. This has become a regular band engagement, and one that, although I’m not a regular, I try to turn out for.

We picked up Stephen’s Mum (who lives quite locally) and brought her with us. She can’t walk very far, so she brought her wheelchair along. Coolings has a huge site. There is a retail area at the front, and once you walk through that, you get out into the outdoor area where plants for sale are set out. Once you’ve walked through that extensive area, you get to the restaurant, and Arthur’s garden is behind that. Definitely a job for the wheelchair where Jessie is concerned!

The band set up under a canopy which provided a bit of shade, and the audience sat on chairs on the lawn facing the band. There were some outdoor tables towards the rear of the audience area for those who wished to bring refreshments outside with them.

We played a range of songs from the shows and tributes to performers such as Frank Sinatra, and it seemed to go down well with the audience. Each year the audience at Coolings gets bigger, so I think they’re coming back for more and bringing their friends along as well.

The garden centre probably did good business after the concert was finished, and Harris HospisCare were also present and were pleased to accept donations. I hadn’t realised that there was a Harris HospisCare connection at the Coolings concert, but as Stephen works for Harris HospisCare, that was one more reason why I’m glad I could participate.

After the concert was over, we took Jessie home and I saw all seven of her cats. I also went out in her back garden, primarily to look at her red budleia. It was actually more of a purple colour. She’s also got a white budleia, on which we saw some red admiral butterflies, but they wouldn’t get into photogenic positions for me.

Today’s photo is of some budleia buds right at the top of the white budleia, against the background of the blue sky. We were lucky that we got some blue sky for our concert today, considering the amount of rain we’ve been having. There’s more forecast for tomorrow, but today stayed dry.

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Website update: Ocean Majesty and Seabourn Pride, 3rd July 2005

Posted by HelenEdith on July 21, 2007

A couple of years ago, we were lucky enough for a Tower Bridge lift for a cruise ship to coincide with City Hall being open to the public and we went and took advantage of the opportunity.

We were surprised that there weren’t more people up on the observation balcony to see a really big ship passing through Tower Bridge, but we had the place almost to ourselves. There was one other person up there who had come specially to see Ocean Majesty pass through Tower Bridge; and a few tourists for whom the event was an unexpected bonus.

Click here to view pictures of Ocean Majesty, and also Seabourn Pride, a second cruise ship, who was berthed in the Lower Pool, plus tugs Cobham and Sun Thames, who were in attendance on Ocean Majesty.

Here are links for City Hall – weekend opening, Port of London Authority Cruise Ship Diary and Tower Bridge Lift Schedule, which are the websites to monitor if you want to try and find a day when you can see this sight for yourself.

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Website update:Kew Garden pictures from October 14th, 2005

Posted by HelenEdith on July 20, 2007

I’ve made a bit of headway with my project to remove my images from Yahoo Photos.

Today I’ve uploaded about 100 pictures taken at the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew on October 14th, 2005.

They include pictures of cacti, waterlilies, orchids, other flowers, both indoors and out, autumn colour, some of the statuary around the gardens, and some of the glass installations by Dale Chihuly, which were being exhibited around the gardens in October, 2005.

Click here to view them.

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Website update: Sempervivium pictures

Posted by HelenEdith on July 16, 2007

I’ve just moved some Sempervivium pictures from Yahoo Photos to my website, but thought that they merited an announcement as I’m quite proud of one or two of the pictures.

They’re mostly of Sempervivium Arachnoideum, but there are a couple of pictures of a second variety to round the page off.

Click here to view them.

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Website update: Garden pictures

Posted by HelenEdith on July 15, 2007

I’ve been outside taking pictures in the front garden.

It all started because someone wanted to see a picture of one of our agave plants. In the end, I photographed “Son of Spikey” rather than the original and largest “Spikey” because of accessibility.

Then I went on and photographed a buddleia, some roses, the passionflower, and the flowering spike of a sempervivium. The latter is a plant which is also known as a house leek or as “hens and chicks”.

Click here to go to the pictures.

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