This column first appeared in the printed version of The Wokingham Paper, available every Thursday.
This week I have mostly been .... MISSING THE MISSING
Wow. The Missing. What a brilliant second series, strong cast, excellent plot and thankfully the ending tied up most of the loose ends, something series 1 one didn't do. Over on Twitter and Facebook minds were working overtime to work it out and when it all became apparent what was what I am sure I heard a collective "oh my days" over Wokingham. Of course I had my heart in my mouth as Julien counted down to trois, will this pave the way for a third series? Bien sur!
Brrrrr it's been cold and I've been layering up like the Michelin man. Hurrah for my cosy Turtle Doves gloves. The clever folk in Shropshire turn preloved cashmere jumpers into practical and gorgeously soft new accessories - what's not to love? Remember the sketch of Billy Connolly's about the gloves on elastic - that'll be me soon. Obviously not with flowing locks, a beard or a Scottish accent.
I do love this time of year for hearty foods. My youngest made a birthday cake for the dog which stank. Incase you've got a dog birthday coming up: she mixed 2 scoops of dried dog food with a jug of beef stock, mixed up a standard sized sponge cake using 3 table spoons to bind the stinky stuff and using the rest to make fairy cakes, shoved it in the oven (the fairy cakes burnt) et voila and hey presto. He viewed it suspiciously but ate it all up.
THINKING OF PRESENTS
Not for me to give, but for others (which for some reason auto correct insists on changing to otters which changes the whole sentence!). A friend was looking for a hamper but not a basket, so I suggested heading to Brown Bear Bakery and buying a bright Hinza bag and filling it with delicious treats that will be enjoyed. There's nothing worse than getting a hamper full of stuff you don't like. Be brave, bespoke.
Whilst on a walk with my dog and gloves I started chatting to a family and somehow we got onto the subject of Malvern. Turns out the man was at school with me at Malvern (I loved boarding school, not for everyone but I enjoyed it) had lived in Wokingham for ages and remembered loads of people I'm still in touch with. Small world.
Another small world moment was meeting Duncan from Supper who was at Holme Grange, but before my time. I'm looking forward to trying out some dishes and will report back. I like the concept of local chefs using local produce. I also bumped into a (actually THE favourite) teacher who taught 2 of my lot. I know she reads this column as she told me so I won't embarrass her by naming her but it was so nice to see her again. Way back in year 3 when my teenagers were dinky little duts .... now they're 15 and 18 and tower over her. They've not forgotten her and still speak fondly of her. It was funny to hear her say to Mook what's 7 x 7, as if they were back in the classroom and not the bread aisle. Thank you Mrs T for being such a great teacher.
I know it's really tempting to enter a competition to be in with a chance to win a car / a shop voucher / a holiday / a cruise / a campervan etc but please don't be gullible. These are scams. Posts like this that start with "For the first time ever on Facebook xyz are giving something away" are not real. They are farming your likes and shares.
Look at the spelling and grammar, look at how many posts they have and then do nothing.
The best thing you can do is report them to FB as a scam and save yourself a lot of spam.
LOOKING AT FURNITURE
With the onset of Christmas and my coach trip mentality I've been looking at furniture. Now don't tell everybody but Pedlars Place in Warfield and The Trading Post at White Waltham are fabulous finds.