Friday, 17 April 2015

10 Things: Week 15

 A very Book Crossing centric post!

1. Read: I'm still reading 'The Dinner' by Herman Koch on my kindle and for the bath time reading: 'In the Dark' by Deborah Moggach. Set in the great war it follows the lives of those in a boarding house and what happens when the widowed boarding house owner: Mrs Clay falls for the Lothario local butcher.

2. Made: Not a thing. Well,  I lie.  It hardly counts and I have no photographs. There is a game us BookCrossers love to play at meet ups called 'The Bookswap Game' or 'Steal and Reveal'. It requires you to take a long a wrapped book you've read, so I opted to make a simple drawer string bag to hide the book until it was revealed in the game. I used some texty fabric and it was all very 'cheap and cheerful'. Needless to say I didn't win the best dressed book in the bookswap prize. That went to my friend Retromonkey, who of course made a sock monkey. The sock had books and book worms on it.

Retromonkeys entry

3. Watched: I am all behind with my TV watching this week. I have watched a couple of the 'special' one off episodes of Only Fools and Horses. Which for non UK readers was a very popular comedy in the 1980's. 

4. My Garden/Flowers: Spring has sprung everywhere now! The garden is looking so lush and green. Bulbs and blossom everywhere. My brother has given the lawn it's first cut this week and cleaned down all the patio areas. The mini heat wave means I've had shorts and t-shirts on and we've even been able to have meals outside!

5. Eaten: Friday night at the world bookcrossing convention, which was held at St Hilda's College, Oxford we had a buffet. The convention runs for three days and there are extra activities arranged for those arriving earlier or later than the convention time. It's put on by a committee of volunteers and the price for the whole weekend is just £50. I say 'just' because this is far cheaper than some sewing related things that I've seen advertised or experienced. For that price I was kind of expecting a very basic buffet. It was far from that. It was a sit down buffet in the Main Building and there were waiters on hand to replenish water jugs/coffee and any food that looked like it might be running low.

Excellent Buffet!
Bookcrossing friends Beqi and Retromonkey impressed by the food.

Proof I actually went

me - the only photo of me as I was behind the camera rather than 
in front of it.

6. Visited/Seen: As already mentioned I've just come back from the annual bookcrossing convention. This is only the second time it's been held in the UK. The first time was in London.  The venue was St Hilda's College. The indoor activities were held in the Jaqueline du Pre building (JDP), although it was such lovely weather quite a few of us enjoyed the lovely grounds. Sadly there was problems with my accommodation and I wasn't well so after a poor nights sleep I ended up missing most of Saturday and going home. It wasn't an easy decision but both Chief and I are still struggling after the tummy bug we had a few weeks ago and I really needed to get some proper rest and be near a toilet. Something the college couldn't quite work out to my satisfaction, despite pre-paying for en suite accommodation back in July of last year!

St Hilda's
Just part of  St Hilda's College.

That aside the convention was brilliant. Great company and so many books! 

Book Buffet or Table of Temptation
the book buffet - all these books to tempt
a reader!

7. Recommended: How can I not recommend Book Crossing? I have been a bit of a lapsed bookcrosser these last few years. The convention has really rekindled (hmm unfortunate pun) my enthusiasm for it though. 

8. Stash: In: 1.5 Out 0 - it was boosted by some destashing by Lily's Quilts. I really needed to boost my low volume stash after using so much of it recently.

9. Birds: Friday afternoon, after some of us had lunched at the aptly named 'Tick Tock Cafe' - there was clocks everywhere and my friend was wearing a top with clocks on it - a no brainer to eat there then!

The Tick Tock Cafe - Cowley Road Oxford

We sat down on bench in the college grounds heckling the punters watching the valiant attempts of those punting along the river Cherwell. I'm a dreadful spectator of punters and can be heard muttering: They're in Oxford not Cambridge what are they doing trying to punt from the front? or Umm they're punting from the back but they're actually stood on the front of the punt to do it?! Although I do feel for them. Some went round in circles and could hardly navigate the five yard stretch in front of us bouncing from one bank to the other.  Of course the professionals think nothing of having 4 punts lashed together and whipping up the river. We shouted words of encouragement to those we thought might appreciate it and waved at excited children.  I am not a punter. I keep saying I should go. Really I should go with my brother who is an experienced expert punter. I've heard tell that near Folly Bridge where the  River Thames meets the more gentile R. Cherwell that whilst people are rowing in circles or losing punting poles my brother is the one over taking them and off miles ahead leaving them all in his non literal wake.

River Cherwell from St Hilda's 

There is so much wildlife around that area. Green Woodpeckers would fly along the river and spend ages on the grass of the sports fields across the river. Even when I checked in at the lodge earlier that morning there was a lot of quacking and some mallards looked set to join me in the lodge! Also flying up the river bank and swooping in and out of nearby trees was a Jay! A new one on my year list and a bird I really love because of it's pinky plumage and that magical flash of blue and white on the wing.  And of course just like the Jay I've also been referred to as another 'J' that's quite a chatty bird! 

I spotted a Jay flying about near the river!

10. And finally: Chief is due down on Thurs night so this will be another scheduled post and hopefully we'll have a pleasant few days together before he returns to northern parts on Saturday night. I am hoping that next week I can baste my Amsterdam quilt. It would be so lovely to get it finished!


  1. Sounds like you've been having a lovely time!! The book arrived today, thank you!! I shall find one to send in return :) Enjoy your time with chief! Xx

  2. your book crossing event looks more and more tempting everytime I see it. An oxford college, lots of books, like minded people and food - brilliant. This week I read Hazel Holt "death is a word" and have started "nora Webster" by Colm Toibin. On the kindle Im reading the usual free rubbish.

  3. went punting once, with sons, punting the oxford way of course. For most of it I was convinced they, we, I would fall in, but really enjoyed it once I relaxed.


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