Monday, 08 February 2016
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The Hermitage … at lastSince retirement, a visit to the Hermitage museum in St Petersburg has been on the wish list. Finally we looked up the flights and found to our delight that such a trip wouldn’t break the bank. The hassle of visa collection in Lisbon proved to be what it was “hassle.” But still thrilled at our panache and courage we set off for an early Christmas present in Russia.

Hop on - Hop offVisitors to London from the States have to be entertained, and what better way than an open top tour of the Capital on a double decker bus.

The “hop on, hop off” availability appeared to suit all concerned and we were soon determining our “hop on” and “hop off” spots. I must admit that initially I had trouble understanding the tour maps. Red and Blue routes criss-crossed and the directional arrows were seemingly randomly placed. Finally I got the hang of them after a “tour conductor” explained.

Fly by Night and DayAn observational poem for those 'by the sea', by ADN reader Richard Thurman.

Mark Twain"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."

The signs advertising 'free tasting room' increased to 3 per mile as we wound our way through the beautiful rolling landscape of the Sonoma valley past Calistoga along the Russian river and onto Healdsburg.

Welcome to the "Hacienda MackeeDee"...(Its an eating place…. A real meeting place)The rewards of grand-parenting are many and varied. They bring exposure to different environments, new sets of people, baby bottles, little fingers, bowed legs and of course nappies.

Having completed the early shift and despatched mummy off to work and the younger "pair" to the nursery we took to the streets for a late morning coffee and a re-familiarization tour of the local surroundings.

carnation1974It is so sad to read some articles that the media believes will cause impact or damage, but which never explain the crucial impact on our actual society under PSD rule which is pretty much a right wing party which has taken us back to the time of Salazar.

Media censorship is being updated and is again being introduced in today’s journalism and TV news reports.

Thoughts of a main against a wall!A short witty poem by Richard Thurman...

World’s cleanest bathrooms are in’s intrepid explorer braves the bathrooms of various establishments and comes to the conclusion that Portugal has the cleanest toilets in the world. While we question how many countries have been surveyed, we felt you may enjoy reading our explorer’s rather off-the-wall review.

Every morning after breakfast my dad would take the daily newspaper and read it for an hour on the pot in the back bathroom. So I was behaviourally conditioned to follow this tradition. However, I can’t find the resolve to stay more than ten minutes at a time.