Mrs Rudd, my kind helper, with Will whom she absolutely adored ! if she is still alive, Mrs Rudd must be in her nineties now ~ ah me I should have kept in touch if only with Xmas cards !

My huge new bin for recycling ~ nearly as big as me and twice as heavy !

The hottest July day on record !

Jean and Terry ~ my regular HODs helpers

Golly ~ it's been absolutely sweltering today and weather men tell us it is the hottest July day since records began 100 years ago !   I'd put a note on the blue bin, asking the dustmen to drag it down the yard and up again for me though we are supposed (I believe) to take them dowm to the yard entry ready for them ~ I was still in bed when I heard them clattering around so dashed down in my dressing gown to see what they said and one of them very kindly said that if I can drag it across the garden onto the footpath he will make sure it is emptied and brought back ~ terribly kind ~ I had told him how old I am and practically housebound, but nevertheless wonderfully helpful.   Never having had a wheelie bin before, I am amazed at how large they are and how heavy ~ even empty.   last night David had brought it across from dark corner ~ I'll have to keep an eye open for a hunky fellow every-other Tuesday night !

All afternoon the computer was playing up, but it could have been the heat ~ I was feeling pretty grotty myself.   Too hot to cook, almost too hot to eat though might have a bowl of shreddies later.   The first bodies arrived home from the carnage in Tunisia ~ it now seems at least 28 of the dead were British ~ frightful.   Bill and his son John had been out in Tunisia early in May but he tells me they were in Tunis and on their annual bonding trip always avoid tourist spots, so that's good.   Too hot still at 9 for comfort so will just give you a picture of the blue bin, quite big enough to dump a body in, and call it a day.

Friday evening and still baking: I've put David's photos from Beamish Museum on blog (photo album 5) and one of Alison whom I've known for years as a regular visitor next door with her new partner Simon ~ had such a happy natter with them, and Simon, bless him, fixed the problem on my screeching portable phone.  There was a Sainsbury's delivery first thing ~ Mary Smith called in on a brief visit from Saltburn and their move sounds as if it is a real success ~ Ellen was here too for a while ~ later Alison and Simon came in so I was able to catch up on her news from Lincoln and get to know Simon.  At midday there was minute's silence across the country and on the radio to honour the victims of last week's shooting on a beach in Tunisia ~ 30 of the 38 were British. 

I'm just getting into another of Sebastian Barry's wonderful Irish novels and again the narrator is a woman.  Heard from Anthea that she has now read "Precious Bane" and loves it.   Steve the Postman is such a gem ~ from Sainsbury's I seem to have ordered more carrots than I had intended ~ Steve, can you believe it, when he reached Blackburns Yard, gave Anthea a message about this : "Could you use some carrots ?"  Unfortunately she'd just bought some, so I guess I'll be munching my way through raw carrots for days to come ~ but so sweet and fresh and organic I can't complain !   No more tonight, not in this heat.

Saturday morning 4th of July: Independence Day in US and Will's 53rd birthday !   Thank God  following a thunder storm in the night it is much cooler this morning.   Changed bedding ready for laundry on Monday ~ heard from Barbara at her daughter Tina's in York with a broken ankle that Annabel and Dave have been in an accident up on Skye and their car is a write off, poor souls.   It is such a blessing having the portable phone working again without that terrible screeching so thank you Simon.   Still no resolution to the financial crisis in Greece though they have a referendum tomorrow on whether to stay within Euro Zone or get out which would almost certainly mean being thrown out of the EU itself (if I understand all the endless discussions on Radio 4 News).   Last week bought a water melon which is now wonderfully ripe and dripping with the sweetest juice.  As the three pairs of light cotton trousers I have had for I think 17 years are really so thin they are indecent, I looked for replacements without success ~ this is not the weather for jeans, not even light jeans ~ on a whim looked up cotton pyjama bottoms and found three pairs with subtle stripes/checks and all for less than £10 which sounds pretty good.

My friend Lucy has been in a dither for months about buying a flat and moving out of the sheltered accommodation  where she has lived for the past ten years from the age of sixty although she is perfectly fit and independent.   The decidion has caused her so much distress but finally she has taken the plunge and moved into her own pleasant ground floor flat last Tuesday but already by Thursday she was in deepest despair that she had made the wrong decision.  "For heaven's sake ~ give it a chance !"    As a born-again Christian she decided the Devil was responsible for her BIG MISTAKE ~ oh, please !!   There is no Devil ~ 'The fault dear Brutus is not in our stars but in ourselves that we are underlings.'   Haven't we all made mistakes, BIG MISTAKES, and regularly ~ that's life, Love !   But the poor soul would not be comforted.   I was pretty infuriated, I must admit, at all this self-pity when she was able to buy the flat and run a car and have holidays . . . Always look on the bright side of life, I encouraged her.   And as a Christian,Count your blessings, count them one by one . . .    It did no good, I'm afraid, and she shuffled off in misery, threatening to throw herself off the cliff in which case, I pointed out, the Devil would have won !!   [it's OK she doesn't read my blog]

This afternoon Terry and Jean turned up, Derek's parents from Wakefield ~ Derek and Cheryl used to live at number 5 ~ I had hoped they might come up to Whitby to help out over the Heritage weekend as they have done so enthusiastically in the past, but unfortunately as I'd told them I would not be doing it again, they will be off on holiday that weekend @ Sept 12th/13th ~ they have been grand helpers rushing around putting up balloons and posters, Jean holding the forte up in my bedroom for one session, both of them thoroughly enjoying it ~ I think I've got a photo of them at last year's event.

Monday evening : much cooler and raning in late afternoon ~ a tremendously busy day but I'm too tired to write anything tonight ~ maybe in the morning when I'd better start a new entry.

Eccles School and School House at right hand side from porch with two bedroom windows above ~ Will was born here 53 years ago yesterday, and Kate 18 months later so there were six of us in 2-up-2-down cottage but we managed, as you do ! The school is closed now and as far as we know standing empty ~ surely they wont demolish it ~ it was built I believe in the 1850s.