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PLEASE NOTE: The entries below represent my personal thoughts and reflections. Unless otherwise stated, all views are my own and should not be infered to represent those of any other organisations or individuals with whom I might be linked.


 

 

Bank Holiday Monday 29 May 2017


  Thinking today about two people who made a massive difference to me as I was growing up.


  Today would have been Mum's birthday. Obviously I wouldn't be here without her, but together with Dad she helped shaped me into the person I am today - seems unfair blaming her for that!


  John Noakes died today, aged 83 - which is older than either of my parents got to be. Like Dad he had Alzheimer's disease, so his death will have had an element of release to it. As presenter of "Blue Peter", and later "Go with Noakes", he was one of the big stars of my childhood. Straight talking and down to earth he was one of those people you would have liked to meet.


  My paternal Grandma liked to tell me of the time she and Grandad actually did meet him. They were on holiday in a hotel and had come down to breakfast to see him sat in the window. They paused to say 'hello' and described him as every bit as friendly, charming and down to earth as he appeared on TV. Grandma was really pleased to have met him.


  As a child I was more interested in whether she had also met Shep - his trusty border collie. I think Shep was my first dog love. It wasn't until much later that Dad finally relented and allowed Mum (and us) to have the dog she had wanted since she was a child.


  And so Bonnie came into our lives. A beautiful chocolate brown Labrador/Collie cross, she was the most amazing friend and confidant. Thank goodness she couldn't talk - when I think of some of the things I told her!


  Now I have Coco (a chocolate Labrador/Husky cross) and Charlie (a blue merle Collie/Terrier cross) who keep me company and drive me mad - in roughly equal measures.


  We went for a walk at Blaise Castle this afternoon, meeting up with my friend Bicky Singh and his dog Milo (who had stayed with us over Easter). It was raining so we were surprised to see how many mad people were still there walking their dogs, or even stranger walking without dogs!!!


  As John Noakes would have said "There's nowt so strange as folk".