Friday, January 2, 2009


Well Christmas has gone and so has the snow, at least for the time being. We didn’t have a white Christmas, sort of an off-white I suppose only insofar as it didn’t actually snow over the holiday but there was plenty left over from earlier in the week. All the Family came over on Christmas Eve for the exchanging of presents and we were at Jimmy’s for dinner the following day.

As is common with the media worldwide, all the news has been bad (don’t they just love reporting bad news!) despite some stores opening at 4am with amazing “door buster” offers earlier in December, sales are reported down 5% compared to last year. My main problem is the weakness of the Pound against the Dollar - since September this is costing me $250 a month! Could somebody please ask that nice Mr. Brown to do something about it!

Christmas in America is very like in the UK except there is no Boxing Day, but as Christmas day was on a Thursday, most people didn’t bother going in on Friday.

Yesterday was a real treat for me, Linda’s Hubby, George, is from England and we stayed the weekend with them. George (who is a trained chef) cooked a traditional English roast beef dinner with roast potatoes followed by Christmas pudding. You may have guessed that roast potatoes and Christmas pudding are unknown around here!

Going back to the election, I don’t think I told you that one of our best respected Senators (yes there are really some who are in this category!) was killed about a fortnight before polling day in a road accident. So what happened? Was this part of the election postponed? Nope, the good citizens of Schuylkill County elect a dead man to the State Senate!! Well I suppose perhaps nobody would have noticed anyway! The re-election is scheduled for March.

It is January 2nd as I write this part, New Year’s Eve was extremely cold, windchill made it feel like zero Fahrenheit so we weren’t out on the porch for very long. Just long enough for a quick blast on my hunting horn and back into the warm. There was nobody about to hear me anyway!

I learned an interesting piece of trivia, the County Name - Schuylkill - is Dutch not Native American as I first thought. It mans “hidden river” as it is evidently difficult to find where it flows into the Delaware. I am reading about the history of this area, the Dutch were the first Europeans to arrive, there were no Native Americans living here - it was just a hunting area.

The New Year started with a bit of excitement. An apartment block over the back caught fire and was completely gutted. All the occupants got out safely before the fire took hold thank goodness. It was a change to see our firefighters putting out a blaze just for once, they were superb - heroes all.

So that’s it for another year, I wish all my readers all the very best for 2009, in many ways it couldn’t possibly any worse than 2008 - or could it??

Until next time



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