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Monday, 24 April 2017

P for Poetry Phenomenal and Pretty.

After having written about many several different topics on 'Abcw', I seldom miss an opportunity to write about one of my  favourite subjects .....'Poetry' or Poets.

It is impossible to pick favourites because there are are so many. 

I do enjoy reading humorous Prose and limerics, but then, who could resist 'The Rhyme of The Ancient Mariner' by Coleridge or 

The Village Blacksmith by Longfellow. 

The Blacksmith,

Maya Angelou really stirred  something within me when I first read 'Incredible Woman'.

One of Maya's profound messages.

Phenomenal Woman.

 By Maya Angelou.

 (The first verse, to read more  please log into The Poetry Foundation). 

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies, 

I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size 

But when I start to tell them, They think I'm telling lies,

 I say,

It's in the reach of my arms. 

The span of my hips. 

The stride of my step.

The curl of my lips.

 I'm a woman


Phenomenal woman, 

That's me.

Now for some jocularity, this is the sort of Prose  that I like to read to the grandchildren on a gloomy day!

P for the Porcupine.  (by Ogden Nash)

Any hound a Porcupine nudges 

Can't be blamed for harbouring grudges 

I know one hound that laughed all winter 

At a Porcupine who sat on a splinter.

Who can forget the humorous poem by Edward Lear..... 

The Owl and the Pussy Cat. 

The  owl and the Pussy Cat went to sea 

In a beautiful pea-green boat,

 They  took some honey, and plenty of money 

Wrapped up in a five pound note.

 The owl looked up to the stars above , And sang to a small guitar 'O lovely Pussy  O Pussy my love What a beautiful Pussy you are,

 You are,

 You are! 

What a beautiful Pussy  you are. 

Here , below, is a picture of our beautiful  Pussy, 

HRH The Princess Chloe.

A final word from Ogden Nash.

A Word to Husbands.

 To keep your marriage brimming 

With love in the loving cup,

 Whenever you're wrong,

 admit it; 

Whenever you're right, shut up.


Sincere thanks to   Denise for devising ABCW, to Roger and Leslie for dealing with the administration, and the rest of the team for their support. 

Best wishes, Di.

ABCW team.


Wednesday, 19 April 2017

O for Oh Dear !.. Whatever next ?

I've always been a firm believer in taking whatever life throws at me 'straight on the chin' in other words, don't whinge just get on with it. last week we had a most challenging week, in fact it was so awful I seriously considered sitting in the corner of a darkened room and screaming my head off. Fortunately, common sense prevailed, and instead of having a total melt down,  I sat quietly in my favourite reclining chair, played some soothing music then poured myself a brandy on ice with soda water.

Oh Dear ! Recently I wrote about my husband Ian, who is awaiting open heart surgery which is due to take place on the 25th of May, but what I haven't mentioned that in the midst of all this he has been put on kidney dialysis.

 He had either the choice of going for dialysis at the hospital three times per week which would have been extremely difficult because he is my main carer, (I have severe rheumatoid arthritis), or to have treatment at home.

Initially, he had surgery to place a catheter into the abdomen to make access, then the abdominal area is filled with Dalysate through the catheter. 

At first, this is done manually four times during the day, then, eventually the process can take place through the night whilst he is sleeping using a machine called a Cycler. 

We've had a wonderful team of nurses calling most days and a back-up team should anything go wrong, which it has, but I won't bore you with the details and soon sorted by Ian's specialist nurse, Sarah, who really is an angel.

Next step is preparing ourselves for his open heart surgery which is due to take place on the 25th May 2017.

OH DEAR! Whatever next ? In the midst of all this activity my lap top decided to throw a fit and as it was a bank holiday weekend, we had to wait a while until  Mike the 'magic mender man' could fix it for me. My P.C. is my lifeline with the outside world, as I can't get out and about without assistance from my beloved, it's been a rather trying time! I hope to get back to blogging as soon as possible,

Until then my thanks to Roger for stepping in to help and of course to all those who have been so supportive at this rather emotional and trying time.

Best wishes to all my blogger friends,
Abcw team.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

N for Nomads,

My very first visions of Turkey, as our plane seemed to glide in slowly over the tops of verdant  Pine trees, on the forest shrouded  Taurus Mountains, was Wow ! Are we really landing at Izmir Airport, in Turkey? I just couldn't believe how green and fresh it looked. 

NOMADIC Women in national dress.

Add caption

I imagined it to be very dry and barren but it was quite different  the scenery was breathtaking, As we turned to land, we could see the turquiose blue waters of the Aegean sea on one side and people in bizzare clothes working on the mountainside. These people turned out to be Nomads. I must confess, I did hold my breath at that stage we seemed rather too close to the mountains for comfort! 

Nomadic women working in a mountain side vine yard..

Along the coastal areas in Turkey there are groups of NOMADIC herders called Yoruks. In the winter they come down to the pastures by the coast. During the summer time the blazing sun shrivels the vegetation so the Yoruks travel up to the mountains to the Yaylas, the high mountain plateaus and valley, where there is  enough grass and fodder to feed the stock.

Herdsmen with their stock.

They live in traditional black goat-herd tents. The tents are sectioned off into living areas, bedrooms and a cooking area. Most of their cooking is done out side on an open fire and a flat griddle stone.

All these scenes really took us back in time, they looked so biblical yet it was in 1993, that was our first visit to Turkey and we've had several more since,


Nomad kitchen consists of one open fire  and a board to roll out the flat bread or pidi .

NOMADIC  Herdsman bringing home supper to go with the flat bread!

Aubergine and tomato salad.

The finest beach in Turkey which lies further down the coast still surrounded by the beautiful Taurus Mountains. The contrast between Izmir and Olu Deniz couldn't be so different but still in the same region of my favourite country in Asia Minor...Turkey

Looking at the above picture of Olu Deniz could you believe that this is the same country as Biblical Izmir....?

That's all for now...NO MORE NOMADS>
Many thanks to Denise,Roger, Leslie and the rest of the team.
Best wishes,
ABCW team 
PLease note all the pictures are by courtesy of of Mr Google.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

M for Merriment.

As a natural optimist I always try to look on the bright side of life.  MERRIMENT on a daily basis can wash the blues away. For that reason I have a fine collection of humorous poetry, limerics, one-liners, and many stories of silliness. When I was younger and carefree I was always ready to party with friends, visit the theatre take part in pantomimes and plays. We would regularly have friends, neighbours and family around for a social 'get together' which would include MERRIMENT by the bucketful, and not forgetting, the food.

Lamb Tagine alway a favourite when Making Merry in Chez Di and Ian's,

After the food out would come the guitars, tambourines, Irish drums, violin and so on. All jolly good fun ! 

Cous - Cous.

Flat Bread.
Radish, potato and roasted nut salad,

The Tagine, would take centre stage and would be accompanied by Cous-Cous, Flat bread and salads.  
Kale and chick pea salad

My not so MERRY side of life.

Unfortunately at the grand young age of 50 I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis which was a whole life changer. No longer could I cook and entertain our friends and family, but not to be thwarted, Ian took over all the daily cooking.
 Had I known what a good cook he was, I would have hung my pinny up years ago, 
Then, our delightful daughters stepped up to the 'MERRIMEN' and entertaining platform, 
 they carried on cooking all our favourite recipes at our regular soire`s.
 Often, our lovely neighbours invite us round for yummy dinners,
 Mother (moi) now acts as the Executive Chef, sitting in our cosy kitchen, glass in hand giving out instructions, whenever required,
. They don't really need help, they are all really good cooks in their own right,
 I suspect they do it, just to keep my love of cooking 'on the back burner' !

Now back to the source of my MERRIMENT....... A few little ditties or odd odes that always raise my chuckle levels.

The Mermaid's song.

I'm a little mermaid,

 I'm as pretty as can be,

 And I live in a garden under the sea.

 I ride a seahorse and I sleep in a clam

  I'm a lucky little mermaid,

Yes, I am!

 Oh I'm a little mermaid,

 I'm as pretty as can be, 

 And I'd like to invite you home for tea.

 We'll dine on lobster and octopus stew, 

Then we'd wash it down with a seaweed brew. 


Mrs Moon by Roger Mc Gough.

Mrs Moon

 sitting up in the sky

 little old lady rock-a-bye

 with a ball of fading light

 and silvery needles

 knitting the night.

(Thank you Roger, my former form tutor at my Liverpool college,
A lovely, lovely guy.)

"If I decide to be indecisive that's my decision"
(R. McGough.).
"Always laugh when you can. It is cheap medicine".
(Lord Byron).

My sincere thanks to the Marvellous Denise who devised ABCW so many years ago, and to Roger who Magnanimously stepped in to help as the site grew..... then ably assisted by Leslie who also took on the Mammoth task.

 Last, but not least, the Multifarious team of helpers who support the Magical and sometime Mystical contributors share their talents and Musings  on  

Best wishes,


ABCW team.




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