Monday, February 24, 2014

A New Place to Read Millbrooker Drivel

In the unlikely event that anyone is still checking in to these pages, here's a tiny spot of news.

This blog is pretty wel done, dusted and retired; I've run out of steam in this format.

BUT - and it's a decent enough "but" - I have opened a new blog with my new guide dog as its focal point. This doesn't mean it's going to be nothing but doggie stories, it means that Rusty and I are now having adventures together alongside all the familiar characters from the archives of this blog.

Please visit

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

April Photos So Far

My goodness, but what a lazy blogger I'm being. Finding time to sit and drivel is getting more and more difficult. What with the Hamoaze Band, The Lords of Misrule ceilidh band, the Morris season getting into full swing, holding down a full time job, working (albeit slowly) on a new version of Underneath the Lintel....phew.

So, almost apologetically, here's the latest collection of photos from the Fat Mum Slim Photo A Day challenge that I'm enjoying so much; all from April.....

15. Alone. Mrs The Millbrooker and I breakfast separately; we just like to eat different things at that time of day.

16. Your Favourite Colour. You're almost certain to find it somewhere on this
very tasteful shirt that I bought recently.

17. Busy. The Saltash Road in Plymouth around twenty past five on the 17th.

18. Hello. Lesley Wrecker heading up Millbrooker Towers' garden path. She did, indeed,
say "Hello" about half a second after this shot was taken.

19. Button. Or, in this case, buttons - plural. At Plymouth Railway Station.
Platform 4, since you ask.

20. What's On Your Mind. I spent almost all of the 20th in Exeter at a major gathering of
Morris teams; I only took one photo all day. This is it. It's fair to say that the Morris was definitely on my mind.

21. Fire. Mrs The Millbrooker collecting kindling for that evening's fire.

22. Blurry. And furry, as it happens.
My most popular photo ever on the fmsphotoaday site with 91 "likes".

23. Time. This is at Cremyll, I pass it most days on the way to or from work.

24. I Saw This Person Today. Millbrook Lake is often used by
model boat enthusiasts. This fellow spent a happy hour this morning
on the Stone Quay. I saw him from Millbrooker Towers.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

April Photos

The latest batch of photo a day challenge from Fat Mum Slim. I have missed a couple of them, but that's life....

Like I said before - it ain't great art, but I am having a lot of fun with the gentle daily creative challenge,

1. Play
(this is the set of the production of King Lear that we saw,
starring Derek Jacobi; a mild cheat as I didn't take the photo on the day but
rummaged around in the archives for it)

2. Blue

3. Something Beginning With A

4. This Happened Today
(The tide went out - happens most days, I believe)

5. Something Good

6. Air
(Where once there was hair, there is now only air)

8. On Your Plate
(I used rhyming slang)

9. Tiny

10. A Place
(dear old Millbrook stars once again)

11. Detail
(the detail of the props list - never embark on a production without checking it!)

12. In The Middle
(the most "likes" I've ever had was for this photo: 29.
My apologies to Stealers Wheel)

13. The View From Your Bed
(this, however is the view from MY bed, not yours.
I doctored the image to simulate the last thing I see as I fall asleep.)

14. Water

That's the lot for now. I'm still keeping up with the challenge; more will follow in due course.

Film Club Presents

Right - first things first: we're hugely looking forward to seeing the regular film clubbers again tonight (except Slocombe because he's away).

There is a definite cross-section of political opinion within the seasoned DVD watchers and, now that there's a much publicised death and funeral in the news, there might well be deeply held and opposing viewpoints on all sorts of matters concerning the funeral arrangements, the protests of all types, the legacy of the dead leader etc etc.

Feelings run very high on this sort of thing, and I really don't want a divisive discussion/argument after the film. So no mention of the recently deceased Prime Minister, her policies, her funeral or of the current Number One hit single tonight, please ladies and germs.

Now - onward to the presentation. Tonight we are delighted to offer for your entertainment and mild torture.....

... Mikhail Kalazotov's 1957 classic The Cranes Are Flying.

"...a film about ordinary people to whom war happens ..."

Hugely acclaimed worldwide and mentioned as a favourite piece of cinema by the likes of Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorsese.

Let's see for ourselves.....

Monday, April 01, 2013

NooNoo Does Being Five

Was really all those many many moons ago that Shazzerooneypoos and Dong were around at Millbrooker Towers with Mrs The Millbrooker and me as the news came through that Dozybean had done what comes naturally (although somewhat painfully, I believe).

Well, as it turns out, yes it was.

I just checked the photo archives to find this from early March 2008. Dozy is definitely looking as if she's about to shed some weight quite rapidly. And doesn't Betty Slobb look young? Not that she's exactly ancient now, of course.

A mere blink of an eye later and Mrs The Millbrooker (AKA Nana) and I (AKA Dragon Lord) met the extremely tiny NooNoo for the first time.

And here we are, having barely uttered "Jack Robinson", and the wee fellow has turned five. To mark this grand occasion YarMatt arranged a bit of a do at Fort Stamford across in Plymouth, England. Fort Stamford has a health and fitness club attached to it, with a swimming pool and a kiddies party room and soft play area - perfect for a bunch of noisy short people to run and splash around in.

Meanwhile the adult contingent (at least, those who weren't directly involved in under-aged swimming) sensibly relaxed in more civil surroundings.

Swimming for small people completed and food was served in the party room; adults were cordially invited to observe.

We dutifully did so and NooNoo happily slurped his celebratory drink of something sugary at the head of the table.

Luckily there was a staff member present to deal with the aftermath of the ravening horde of five year old diners.

I'm sure everyone will join me in wishing NooNoo a very happy birthday (albeit a few days late - plus ├ža change). Now where did that half-decade go ....... ?

And the remainder of March's Shots

To complete the series, here are the photos from last month's Fat Mum Slim's Photo A Day Challenge that I haven't yet posted on these pages.

22. About You
In this case, I thought of something being all about you. And me. And everyone else for that matter.

23. What You Do For Fun.

24. Up
(The "Up Main" is the closest line to the camera, Truro station)

25. In My Drawer

26. Something You Did.
Indeed something I do most days.

27. Pair.
Millbrook's own Frankenkeith and Slocombe in the Random Arms,
they're a right pair.

28. In The Mirror.

29. Goodnight

30. Relax

31. Stuff

That's it - onward to April. If anyone wants to join in the only rules are - it's got to be your own photo that you took; it can't be of body parts that are normally clothed nor of anything produced by your bodily functions (and believe me I was tempted by the second prompt of the month "I Made This"); you must share your photo somewhere.

I share mine on the official Fat Mum Slim Photo A Day page on Facebook, on my own FB page and here. For anyone not on FB who wants to know April's prompts:

Sunday, March 31, 2013

All Aboard the Grayhound

Jah Cousteau has been toiling away helping to prepare his home-to-be and a couple of weeks back Mrs The Millbooker, the High Lord of Southwick (who was a-visiting for a few days) and I were cordially invited to take a peek around.

Jah has got himself a 14 month traineeship aboard Millbrook's beautiful hand built lugger, the Grayhound, seen here on her launch day last August.

Over recent months, she's been moored alongside the old Mill after which our fair village is named, being fitted out and sandpapered and oiled and polished and heaven only knows what else.

So, ladies and germs, I now bring you a series of photos taken aboard the lovely beast that is the Grayhound. I highly recommend clicking on the link to the ship's website as well - loads of fascinating stuff on there. But look at my photos first . . .

Somehow the lovely lady looked slightly less lovely from the outside in the chill of a Cornish winter's day (which had featured an impressive hail storm with hailstones the size of marbles hurtling down from on high).

But aboard, we were quickly taken below decks (see how I avoided saying "downstairs" there, even though it was actually downstairs) to the galley (see how I avoided using the word "kitchen" there, even though it is actually a kitchen). Where it was all warm and cosy and looking very shipshape and Bristol fashion. I'm enjoying this nautical lexicon, ooh aar me hearties.

Next to the galley and its attendant social area . . .

. . . is the first of the bunk cabins (all was still under construction, but we could see how it was coming together).

And heading forward again, the second accommodation cabin with en suite head (see how I avoided using the word "toilet" then, even though it is a toilet). I don't quite understand "head" as a nautical euphemism for toilet. It's not as if you use your head in it or anything. Or perhaps sailors do. Perhaps they have a different physical make up to the rest of us.

And it's here that we catch our first glimpse for this posting of the High Lord of Southwick inspecting the lovingly jointed woodwork.

We admired some of Jah Cousteau's knot work (oh yes, he tied these monkey fists himself).

Back through the galley and then aft through to the frighteningly small hatchway that leads from the deck to the crew's sleeping quarters. Yep - that's it. Limbo skills are a desirable asset for crew members. Moderately overweight, poorly sighted, rapidly stiffening (quiet in the cheap seats) middle-aged men should think twice before applying.

This moderately overweight, poorly sighted, rapidly stiffening (oi! I said quiet in the cheap seats, that's quite enough of your sniggering) middle-aged man did, however, boldly squeeze himself into the tight hole (stop sniggering, dammit) to take a look where Jah will be sleeping for more than a year at sea.

It looks a bit like this (this is actually the Mate's bunk - foam mattress to be fitted later). Jah and the other trainee will more or less top-and-tail in interwoven bunks on the other side of the same cabin.

And with that, we were back on deck and saying our thank yous and cheerios to Marcus (to whom the Grayhound belongs) for showing us around, but who successfully avoided being in any of my photos. And to Jah Cousteau who braved the bitingly cold wind on the deck with us.

I must say it was a fascinating tour, and I sincerely hope the venture is a resounding success for Marcus and Freya as they take paying passengers around all sorts of exciting places. The ship's full itinerary is on their website.

Do take a look:, a trip aboard upon the high seas (or indeed, the English channel) is nowhere near as expensive as you might think. What an adventure. Go on - you know you want to.