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About My Blog Site — Garfieldhug’s Blog

3 May

I started out simply writing about this and that and what ails me. Yes this blog site is about me and my nonsensical love for my inanimate furball Garfield. This blog site is also about me and the difficulties that I face health wise, challenges in work life and Lords that gave me a hard […]

via About My Blog Site — Garfieldhug’s Blog

london 3.5.20 sunday

this post is i think the most important post , to shout out to everyone why we write a blog, it is a reminder to everyone of us who writes and read blogs to always bear in mind; that way we will allow everyone  the freedom to write and say whatever they wish in their blogs without our taking things too personally or to be too judgemental. i will like if this post can be the header in every blog, to be read right at the beginning, and always there to remind us the reason why we blog. 

like my own company

14 Jan

london 8.30pm 4C or 6C (depanding on which website i see). foggy it seems, but i cannot tell looking out of my window. its dark now friday 2022

its been very peaceful around here. today the workmen did not come. they have only came 2days since they started this week. but they did do quite a lot. plastered the kitchen walls, and painted them with a whitewash.

as usual my days are very lazy. i dont work anymore, so have no tales of working life to tell. in fact, i am very happy that i dont have to go to work anymore.  i dont have any hobbies, nor go out to eat out, or go to any social activities or exercise . so nothing there to talk about. and the news, mainly full of the australian trouble with novak djokovic.

i dont feel the need to talk to people, so have deliberately isolated myself and not make any arrangements to meet friends. i make the excuse that corvid is still about so dont want to socialise. i know plenty of people i read in the news express their isolation and not meeting people and lamenting it, but i am glad to say i am not feeling that. i wonder if i am a hermit by nature. just like being on my own and my own company.

i have been able to get some novels downloaded from the kindle store, free books usually first of a series, where the authors give it away free supposedly to let u read the first novel and hope u get hooked and want to read the rest of the series. they are space operas, as i am interested in those kind of stories. they are very nice escape stories to get away from the real world.

in the meantime i enjoy eating what i cook. that has been the most consistent enjoyment i have  in my life now. its interesting, because so many of past pleasures have been destroyed by the corvid. but i am glad to say this one has remained intact. the pleasure of eating my own home cooked meals. and it is not even that i have improved my cooking skills. i get pleasure just from eating pork fried in the wok. just that simple, just some salt added, and somehow that simple way of cooking makes the pork very delicious. the charred bits add to the taste , smell , texture of it so that eating it is such deliciously  lovely. 

ordinary life

12 Jan

london 1.20pm 8C sunny wednesday 2022

this is the second day the kitchen workers have come to start on renovating the rooms since the flooding began in feb last year. i tend to leave them alone to get on with it , saves me a lot of bother. i am glad i am not too concerned or fussy about getting the kitchen fitted . it is coming up to a year since the kitchen is uninhabitable. we only use the stove to cook, and more or less have abandoned it . and it is coming up to a year. i am glad it has not affected our mood about it. we have just adapted to it and carried on with our lives. i hear people being affected by the lockdowns and being confined to their flats and not having a balcony or garden and feeling bad about it. i cannot say i understand that kind of thinking. even in lockdown we can go out, and go walking in the countryside or surroundings, or the nearest park. maybe london is unique that it still allow us to go walking in the parks, and there are a lot of these parks dotted all over london, so it is strange to hear people say they feel trapped in their flats, and wanting gardens… maybe other countries are much stricter , like what i read in china now, where whole cities are put in quarantine. prevented from leaving not even to go out to buy food, so that they are saying people are starving in their homes; but then again, it is hard to know what to believe regarding news coming out of china. here in london, as far as i am concerned, it is just like my ordinary life before corvid. i know i am unusual because mylife before corvid is a cocoon allready, so maybe i am not a good example. ah well, nevermind. 

i am waiting now for the workmen to finish for the day and leave. usually they come in the morning and go away for lunch and dont come back. so i am hoping that is what they will do today. i want to go out , to enjoy this sunny day and as i want to have a destination when i go out, i shall go to the tesco in piccadilly circus to see what they got reduced. i dont really need anything, so i shall be looking for any luxury food stuff, usually desserts, like the 3pack of trifle that i like. it seems to have hit my tastebuds something fierce haha. so i shall buy it if it is reduced to 75p. it is usually £1.70 for 3, but in express stores it can be priced up to £2.

 i have been watching videos of home life in spied life, and also walkers taking videos of their cities, like manila , bangkok, malaysia, which are the ones interesting to me. the walkabout videos of manila , phillipines are very fascinating. showing the street life , their all chrome buses, pedicabs with sidecars that look so fantastic and all the kids and people. there are a lot of kids around , it is a young nation, the crowds are full of   young people. 

alternatives

10 Jan

london 11.15am 6C cloudy monday 2022

a pack of six , 3 of strawberry , like this, and 3 of peach.

i went foraging yesterday at the tesco express store in piccadilly circus. and bought this 6pack of mueller corner yogurt. it was £2.55 (this store has inflated the normal £2.25 price) to 89p. i had not tasted this brand before, so lets see how different it is from the usual economy yoghurt i buy costing £1 for 1kg. (now it costs £1.20/kg. it has decreased in price, it used to cost £1.50/kg. that £1 i buy is when it is on special offer).

i cant say it is any different from the basic yoghurt. it is more creamy, but i suspect the creaminess may be due to added artificial stuff. though i can see how that creaminess may be liked by a lot of people who normally dont like yogurt. normal yogurt is not that creamy and also slightly acidic, tart taste. i like its normal taste. also this packaging is excessive and will just add to the landfill.

here in uk, we have the sell by date policy, whereby goods cannot be sold past its sell by date and force the retailers to reduce their prices before it expires, or throw it away and incur bad publicity  for  wasting food. so they have this reduced section, giving us a chance to buy these products at greatly reduced prices. now we are in the post holiday period, there will be fewer bargains in meat i think. but maybe we might get more luxury foods being reduced. we shall see. 

there is plenty in the news about rising food costs, like this article. but i can say , and this is only my viewpoint, but one that is based on my experience on the ground as it were, is that it isnot as bad as they say. if u buy branded stuff then that might be true, but if u keep to supermarket own brand, or economy brand, there is no difference or very little. there is always an alternative that keeps its price even if the other raises it. consider  heinz baked beans is £1 a can in their list , but economy baked beans is 22p a can. and really the difference may be you get a bit more sauce in it and a little less beans. 

for eg, i used to buy vegetable oil made from rapeseed,at £1.09/litre. then they increased it to £1.15(£1.20 at the express stores) so i switch to buying sunflower oil which has remained the same £1.09 price. and if u are a sainsbury nectar card holder, u can even get it further reduced as they can give u up to 120 nectar points, worth 60p, effectively you get that litre bottle of oil for 49p. cooking oil is a staple buy for everyone. so its nice that u can counter any price increases with this strategy. i am not bothered if luxury goods increased a lot in price. people who buy them should pay more and hopefully the retailers will profit from there and keep the basic essential foods the same price or lower. 

added. 11jan 2022 ,

tesco and lidls are selling veg oil for £1.09 . now why has sainsburys increased theirs to £1.15? and then give us nectar card holders nectar points that reduce the price to 49p. there must be some logic in place for that, but i could not see it. also, the increased price they charge for their express stores. we locals all must know that it is more expensive than in their superstores. so who are they fooling? only the tourists, which might work in the past as there are so many tourists in london, but now? there are not that many. and now tesco express stores are all changing their self service tills to card only, making everyone else queue up for the human cashier, and making only one human till open. and those who just want to buy a cigarette pack which are sold behind the human cashier,or to buy a lottery ticket have to join the queue with us cash buyers, making the queue even longer than necessary.

 

 

will i be having a new font

6 Jan

london 6 jan 2022 thurs

so what is the font like now that i have rebooted the chromebook. it looks like it has got back to normal.the only way is to post it. because i found the last time i did it with the new font, the size has got reduced. 

added 7.34pm 7C

i woke up from a nap, and still thinking of that chicken. in that i thought today is 8 jan, but it is really 6jan.

i did not notice the sell by date in that label of that reduced chicken when i bought it. i only saw the yellow sticker with its £1.65 price.  i checked it just now , retrieved it from the recycling bin where i threw it, and saw it was 8 jan, but it looked like 6. it was hard to distinguish the two, so maybe in the haste the staff must have thought it was 6, and thus reduced it. the original price was £8.88. quite a bargain. it was a free range hen, corn fed too. but now i tasted it, i am not convinced it is worth the huge extra cost. the economy chicken is £2.66.

now that i am aware of the potential cost savings at these express stores, i will pop in now and then to check them out. it might be one offs, due to the post holiday blues, haha. people not buying any groceries after they have binge bought before the festival day. people feeling poor from the debt they have accummulated pre festival and cutting drastically their spend.  jan is a month of debt to most people, when all the binge behaviour in dec comes home to roost. 

6 Jan

london 10.07am 1.7C (lowest -0.8C at 5.30am) sunny thursday 2022

first really cold day of the new year, in london at least, if not the whole of uk. sounds alarming, but nowadays most of us have good insulated flats, so like me here , i dont feel the cold. we got fleece clothing too, much warmer than wool. i haven’t gone out yet , so dont really know how cold it feels outside. 

added. 1.35pm 5C cloudy 

i went out to the library, to read the papers, simon gave me a library book to return. afterwards i went to the sainsburys but there was nothing i want to buy. then i went to waitrose, nothing to buy. i walked across the street to the tesco express. i usually dont buy anything there as they are overpriced but this time i saw a organic free range whole 1.6kg chicken reduced to £1.65. usually it sells for about £8. it was only about 12.30pm, so it is very early for them to reduce it by so much. so i bought it. i took it to the cashier, because all express stores now do not have cash self service tills anymore, they all want cards, so the only way for a cash buyer is to go to the human cashiers. but this one told me he wont take my £20 note. and i dont have any cash . only a few coins. then i found the £2 tesco voucher, so i gave that to him, but he wont give me change , ask me to go round the store and find something for 35p. i can only find a small baquette for 60p. and pay the 25p difference. this store is rather extreme not to accept the £20 note. so if i want to pick up any more bargains here i shall have to  around with me some £coins. otherwise i wont bother to shop there. 

in fact, allready i am subconsciously avoiding tesco express stores. as all of them have card only self service tills. and sometimes the queue at the human cashiers is very long. still if there are reduced priced bargains to be had,  i might pop in now and then. i noticed that they are more likely to have huge reductions, especially of their higher priced luxury foods. these foods are very expensive to start with and so fewer people will buy them, and so the chances of them reaching their sell by date without a buyer is very high. so by some rather inverse logic , the chances of finding good bargains is quite high.

anyway i have that free range organic chicken cooking in the oven now. and i am hoping that it will be very tasty and taste like chicken and texture is firm from the exercise   these free range hens are supposed to get. haha.

i allready have so many chicken thighs i bought recently i know it is silly to buy another chicken. but a whole roasted chicken is delicious and i was craving it. and since today the kitchen builders are taking the day off and not coming, after only one day of work yesterday plastering all the walls of the kitchen, i know i have no one using the kitchen and the oven is available to use today. i havent eaten a free range chicken before, so it is a chance to find out if they are really better tasting. 

this font is different from my default font. i dont know how i got it. wish i know, then i can change the font more often. i wonder if i am stuck with this one, or will my old font return once i shut my chromebook down and reopen it. in the meantime  i shall carry on using it just for a change.

what else is happening around me?plenty is happening  but a lot of it is trivial, or nothing i want to talk about. it boils down to what i want to focus on , and that depands on what i am interested in. it seems nothing stands out enough for me to talk about it. or rather as i get older i find so many things in the news not worth bothering about. 

 

 

 

 

looks very nice but will it taste nice?

i have eaten it, and cant say there is a huge noticeable difference from the cheap ones i usually buy. the texture is good, not soft and squashy like the cheap ones, though simon says he likes the soft and squashy texture. i dont, so does it mean i shall always buy free range etc? no because cheap chicken can have a nice texture, if u dont over cook it. the window of perfect texture chicken for the cheap chicken may be very small, but it is there. i think maybe steaming the chicken will bring out the difference , taste wise and texture wise from cheap chicken. but no one i know in uk steams chicken. roasting is the preferred method of choice. the way to bring out real taste of chicken is the haiwanese chicken method . 

such a lot of bargain chicken thighs and low fat pork sausages reduced today

2 Jan

london 2.45pm 12C cloudy very mild today sunday 2022

such a lot of reductions. these are the ones i bought . 5packs1kg of chickenthighs usually £1.65 to 60p each. 5packsof low fat 8sausages 70%pork, 50p each , usually £1.60,though recently selling for £1.20 each. there was a pack marked 70p, so i left it in the basket, the assistant asked me about it, i said i did not want that, and will return it , but she said she will do it for me. it seems they dont reduce them all to the same price.
the lowest shelf where they were stacked

i have kept off buying chicken because i hoped to get them reduced after the new year celebrations. but all the time i had not been able to get them. until today. i was just thinking about it today, as simon told me the builders will be coming to us on 4jan, to do the kitchen at last. and i was thinking i should cook up a batch of chicken , a curry chicken and a black soya sauce chicken, to stock up and freeze , as once they start on the kitchen, it will mean it will be out of bounds to us, they will remove all the stuff in there, oven, etc… (though i am hoping they will let us  keep the fridge, or let us relocate it to the living room maybe so that we can still have food and can stay here. otherwise we will have to vacate the place and they did not mention that. )

anyway, it was real lucky that just when i arrive at the sainsburys in nine elms,it was about 2.30pm; there was this huge amount of chicken and sausages for me. they are just the things i was hoping to get. yesterday i got a reduced 2.2kg leg of pork from tesco , £8.80 to £4.40. so i am all done for meat haha ,

these few days i have been looking at the news and at how others celebrate their new year, and i found myself being unsettled  thinking it is a sad time… somehow the bad news, (and it is always bad isn’t it?) had made me feel sad, until i realise that it is not really that bad really. 

and i think back to a blogger i like who we have all worried for, as she entered the new year having an operation to remove a cancer growth, and the result came yesterday and she wrote that it is removed completely , with the lymph nodes and the histology report that it is a cancer lesion, but it is removed … reading that i was immediately relieved and very happy for her, even though i think she did not realise , or did not place much emphasis on how good that news is. i think she is relieved and very happy about the result , just did not specifically mention it. most of us tend to do that really, we have great relief  and happy but we dont say it. we just feel it. haha. sometimes it takes a bit of time to realise how good the news is. she dont even have to have radiotherapy or chemotherapy for it. 

but to me it is a huge cause to rejoice.  the thing about hearing bad things happening to friends, is that i feel so bad about it, but there is nothing i can do… and so it can be real saddening, and that is why i learn to put it aside and not think of it… and i was thinking maybe that is it, we tend to concentrate and pay attention to the bad things, and not place prominence to the everyday nice things that happen to us or to our loved ones. a philosophy of thought we should practise is to forget about things that we cannot do anything about, and especially not to worry about it. the other thing is to worry about things that might not happen. that is another cause for sadness if u let it. 

high tide today in the thames. see that lion emblem on the opposite shore, with a ring in its mouth. the water is touching the ring , which suggests how high the tide is. that ring is about 6ft above the river bed. its shows there is a lot of water now in the river
shows how high the tide is, lifting all boats in the thames.

added. 8am 4 jan 2022 tuesday .

read this morning in my wordpress reader about rising pork prices in thailand , used to be  115(£2.55)(baht/kg now  double to 210 (£4.66)-250(£5.50)baht/kg. 45baht =£1. here shoulder pork cost £3.10/kg. – loin pork £5.50/kg. the thai baht is still very strong,i wonder how it can stay this strong even after corvid has devastated its economy.  i can remember it was 70baht=£1 when i used to go there for holidays.  2005 , my memory of places is that long ago. one feels so rich then whenever we were in thailand.

 

that spike was in 1998,23 jan when it was 91.46baht=£1

in aug 2019 it was 37bahts. so it has weakened a lot if it is 45bahts now.

all the drama here is on tv

29 Dec

london 6.12pm 13C night dry wednesday 2021

i am seeing the first of the murder on the orient express films, made in 1974 with david suchet as hercule poirot, and the all star cast, and setting the precedent for making this play a chance to bring in famous actors to act their socks off  to show off their skills. this one even have ingrid bergman being nominated for an oscar in a supporting role, acting an over the top swedish missionary , with an excruciating accent and  lines like i was born backwards… teaching little brown babies who are more backward than me. haha. i googled it and she actually won it… 

Best Supporting Actress
 
Bergman won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, and the film received five other nominations at the 47th Academy Awards: Best Actor (Finney), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, Best Cinematography, and Best Costume Design.

albert finney won best actor; and ever since then, we have a few more versions , the latest which was shown on tv recently too, was kenneth branagh. in fact, i htink this time, all the versions have been shown on the tv this year, at around this christmas period. is that a record i wonder. it gives you a chance to see how each actor tries to make their role distinctive. 

in my ordinary life, there is no drama , thank goodness. life simply goes on its undramatic way which is how i like it. we are coming up to 2022. we are in the future !! but it looks just like before, really. the biggest thing is the internet, but that is not visible.

shortest day

21 Dec

london 10.47am 6C cloudy tuesday 2021

08:04Tuesday, 21 December 2021 (GMT)Sunrise in London SW1P, UK

15:54Tuesday, 21 December 2021 (GMT)Sunset in London SW1P, UK

5.41pm 5C cloudy dark now

 

people say you are expected to be sad that it  is the shortest day, the longest night, and it is the gloomiest day of the year. the fact that often it is a cloudy day with hardly any sunshine makes it feel gloomy even more. but i confess i dont feel like that at all. it is just another day really. and all the emotions we put into it is just man made. we could as a switch around consider it a bright day because it means that from today the days will get longer and longer from now on. so you can look on the bright side of it and be full of hope. or u can just feel nothing, because it is just another day .

i have been seeing another movie, this one is saving mr banks, and you would think it is just another tale of mary poppins, this time about the author … usually there is nothing about an author to merit making a movie out of it… but this one they have an angle , that the author is trying to exorcise her  feelings of failing her father and/or her father failing her . that she somehow could have saved her father, from falling into alcoholism and death. and that is why she wrote that mary poppins book. 

i have to admit that when it dawned on me that that is what the movie is saying, it threw my simple enjoyment of mary poppins from a feel good nice tale of a magical nanny who brought some magic into the lives of the kids, into a hidden story about mary poppins came to save mr banks, the father. it takes a dark turn , and i think i rather not know about it. too much drama . children stories cannot be just simple and enjoyable, but people have to put adult emotions and ulterior meanings into them… i rather not know of it. that makes me think about how people can interpret things that at one level is a feel good one to a feel bad another, all by twisting it around. so just like regarding today, as a hopeful thing, or gloomy thing , u can interpret everything else in that good vs bad outlook. frankly i dont like it. i would like those people with their dark outlook to keep it to themselves and not tell us. 

south pacific the original film

20 Dec

london 6.20pm 7C cloudy dark now monday 2021

i have just seen south pacific , the film on bbc justnow. it has just ended and i am surprised at myself at how emotional i was, it brought me to tears. i have not seen all of it before, so this is the first time , and i am surprised at how much it has affected me. nothing these days affect me like that, it has to take a film made in 1958 to do that. i am of course very familiar with the songs, and in fact, we in malaysia, or malaya as it was then, hear the songs on LP, the record of the songs that we have at home. that might account for why i am so familiar with the songs …(i thought maybe i heard it on  radio, but no, i dont recall ever hearing it played over the radio.   in my case , never saw the original film at all. it never came to malaysia , at least i never saw it played in cinemas there all the time i have lived there, though i have to admit i only lived there for the first 21 years of my life, before i came to uk to work. i realised why i never saw the film. i googled rodgers and hammerstein and saw that south pacific came on broadway in 1949. this film was made in 1959. so the LP has been around, heard and enjoyed by millions  for 10yrs allready before the film was made.

someone said about the recent reboot of west side story , that they should also redo a modern version of south pacific, but i am glad they did not because i dont think modern versions do anything to the story that the original films do so well. and now that i have seen from start to finish  of the original south pacific, i think no modern remake will ever tug at the heartstrings so well . rogers and hammerstein seem to be best for musicals. their heydays were in the 40s and 50s. that long ago, and nothing since have bettered them i think. not only their songs have nice tunes, the lyrics mean something too.

the new microwave came today

18 Dec

london 2pm 9C cloudy saturday 2021

its a sharp brand, and it seems has a grill function too.

simon ordered it yesterday and it arrived this morning. that is very quick , i thought with the christmas rush it will be delayed. amazing how quick it is. i think itis this