[Friday 18th June 2021]
Quite a winey sort of day.
Took delivery of a crate (yes an actual wooden crate!) of Chateau Lafaurie-Peyraguey 2001, my favourite dessert wine, conveniently in half bottles. I think this is the first time I've had wine in a crate, and it took a little while to figure out how to open it - I eventually managed with a combination of a flat headed screwdriver and the "claw peen" (yes I had to look that up) of a hammer.
Also a mixed case of Chateau Musar, of 6 different vintages from 1998 to 2019 arrived - I'd really enjoyed the previous mixed case I got from them last year, and it's impressive how some really quite old wines are still available, and comparatively very reasonably priced.
Here's a video of me opening the crate of Lafaurie Peyraguey:
In the evening I took some 2018 Louis Boillot Gevrey Chambertin to the heath to try (it was surprisingly drinkable already). It had been raining most of the day so the heath was wonderfully quiet on the heath, when I got there I pretty much had the top of Parliament Hill all to myself. The lack of people also meant there was some ornithological interest - I watched some kind of bird of prey hovering overhead, then later on a green woodpecker hopping about:
Later on back at home we had some Lafaurie Peyraguey, with strawberries of course.
[Monday 14th June 2021]
Erika had the day off school (a teacher training day) we thought we'd take advantage of that opportunity and take her to Legoland, thinking it would be quiet with other kids being at school. How wrong we were.
Video I took of Miniland, the part with the actual Lego in it:
[Thursday 10th June 2021]
This morning there was a solar eclipse, due to be at least partly visible from London a little after 11am. Alas the skies were a bit cloudy so it was a bit challenging to see anything at all, but I persisted for a while and eventually managed to get a few glimpses of it. It was hardly a "ring of fire" as advertised, more just the sun with a chunk missing out of it.
This video probably gives a better sense of it than any of the still photos:
[Monday 7th June 2021]
Erika had another day off school today (a teacher training day after the half term holiday) so the girls went into the centre to do some shopping, and I joined them for a little while for lunch. We finally got back to our old favourite - dim sum at Joy King Lau - after a very long absence. It was just as good as always.
[Saturday 5th June 2021]
I walked to Brent Cross in the morning, to meet Chie and Erika as Erika finished her Japanese school a little after midday. From there we motored up the M1 to the East Midlands to visit Mum again, and spent another very pleasant afternoon / early evening out in her garden.
[Friday 4th June 2021]
The girls were out for the evening until late, so I was left to my own devices. I decided to go and have dinner on the heath, despite the slightly inclement weather, and had a thoroughly lovely time of it.
Whilst out on the heath I decided on a whim to make a short instructional video about the barrow. I'd had a couple of glasses of wine by this point so you'll have to excuse the fact the narration isn't exactly razor sharp:
Oh and spurred on by that first, errr, effort, I also made another video about some of the trees in my favourite wooded bit of the heath:
I don't think I'm going to become a YouTube celebrity any time soon.
[Monday 31st May 2021]
I headed to Wiltshire today to explore Fyfield Down, the place from which the sarsen stones used to build the stone circle at nearby Avebury (as well as some of Stonehenge) are believed to have been taken from.