Preston St., Brighton

I was delighted to come across “10 Things To Do In Brighton” on the ‘Travel With A Mate’ website, having just returned from a great 10 days in the city. (Actually they don’t seem to be able to decide whether they’re a town or a city, there are various street signs that say one or the other!). Preston Street, pictured above, is just around the corner from the George IV Guest House our base, and a short walk from Russell Square where my son Ed has his flat. Preston Street is indeed packed with restaurants and while we were there we had a great Greek meal in one, and of course a Chinese in another. Here’s what ‘Travel With A Mate’ has to say:

“There are hundreds of amazing restaurants in Brighton. Often tucked down little side streets and hidden in the Lanes. There’s also a famous road packed with tasty places to eat, Preston Street. If you’re on the sea front and you see “China Gardens” a huge chinese restaurant, then you’ve reached the bottom of Preston Street. Walk up it and breath in the gorgeous smells from all the cuisine on offer. Everything from Chinese to Morrocan, Indian to Mexican. While it’s true this road has seen better days (with a number of establishments closing down) It’s still the place to go if you can’t decide what you want to eat. Just follow your nose.”

Of the other activities recommended in the piece, we certainly enjoyed walks along the seafront, the shops, the pier and the pavillion. We were lucky with the weather and were wonderfully looked after by Ed his business partners and friends. For sure we’ll be back in Brighton sometime in the not too distant future!


On Leave

I am on leave in UK until 26th September and enjoying life in Brighton. The weather? Yesterday the sun shone and we took advantage by going out to Lewes and having a really English pub lunch in the Juggs, a 600 year old pub in rural Sussex. Nice? You bet! There’s the photo.

We also had an excellent dinner at Warung Tujuh, an Indonesian restaurant in the fascinating old part of Brighton, in the company of my son Edward, and Matthew and Kerry his workmates from CC.
Anastasia Katele is running the lodge – even if she had problems, I don’t suppose I would be told about them!



I liked this, forwarded by my sister Ruth:

For several years, a man was having an affair with an Italian woman. One night, she confided in him that she was pregnant. Not wanting to ruin his reputation or his marriage, he paid her a large sum of money if she would go to Italy to secretly have the child. If she stayed in Italy to raise the child, he would also provide child support until the child turned 18.

She agreed, but asked how he would know when the baby was born. To keep it discrete, he told her to simply mail him a post card, and write ‘Spaghetti’ on the back. He would then arrange for the child support payments to begin.

One day, about 9 months later, he came home to his confused wife.
‘Honey, ‘she said, ‘you received a very strange post card today.’
‘Oh, just give it to me and I’ll explain it later,’ he said.
The wife obeyed, then watched as her husband read the card, turned white, and fainted.

On the card was written:

‘Spaghetti, Spaghetti, Spaghetti, Spaghetti, Spaghetti.
Three with meatballs, two without.’

‘Send extra sauce!’


EW Chanter 1909 – 1997

August 1st was my late father’s birthday so he’s often uppermost in my thoughts at this time of year. Here’s a great photo of he and my late mother resting during one of their many rambles over Exmoor. I guess he was in his early 80’s when the photo was taken.


Lois & Peter Woolley – Golden Wedding

My sister Lois Woolley recently celebrated her 70th Birthday and with husband Peter her Golden Wedding (50 years) all in one go – and there’s a beautiful picture of the happy couple. Naturally we thought it would be very difficult for us to attend as we’d thought we’d be very busy during the world cup period – wish now we’d gone for the party! Here are a few extracts (for the record) from Lois’s letter describing events:

“It has been quite the couple of weeks with endless fun and excitement. The week before the party people gradually came into town , Pamela (Tate) and Katy and Tim all came on the Tuesday and we had a chance to do some things with them. On the Wednesday we met Helen (King ) and her husband Alan and after lunch went to play Pitch and Putt on the par 3 golf course at the park The 3 women played together and we were pretty hopeless but had fun. We play that the maximum score on a hole is 5 and as Helen was the only one to get a score of less than that she was declared the winner !!!

The Thursday was Canada day and we took Pam to the races at Hastings Park – there was a good crowd there and we had lunch which makes it more fun . She had never been to the races before and really enjoyed especially as she doubled her money bet from $5 to $10 !! David (W) and David Rodwell were there as well but in the cheap seats although they came to the club house for an extended visit. Katy and Chris spent the day with a friend from Katy’s university programme. They managed to catch the Canada fireworks, though.

Friday was the day of the big “rehearsal ” dinner ( just like a real wedding !!!) and we fed 23 people here – all our lot except Nat, Hilary and Leslie and the people from England plus a couple from California. Luckily I had done most of the cooking ahead as the day seemed to be nothing but interruptions. We had hoped to eat outside but it was deemed too cold for that and I think we made the right decision. Peter made a presentation to Christine of a plaque he had made from a piece of Chinese green stone and the engraved part of a gold cigarette case that belonged to his father – it was in recognition of all that her mother had done for the twins – she was quite moved and shed a tear or two. The family washed up which was just as well as I had had enough by then.

Peter introduced the out of town guests and family and after the main course was served Rachel made a short ( and very good ) speech and we had a cake cutting with photographs as per the original shot from 50 years ago. The big highlight was the Elvis impersonator who we had managed to keep secret and he got everyone up and dancing and having fun. We met a friend at the beach today who told us it was the most fun he had had for ages – we have had tons of phone calls , cards etc as well. We shut down the music at 11 but Leslie was still dancing around. He was convinced that it really was Elvis !!!

Since then it has just been having fun with the family who have been coming and going. Tonight we are on our own and catching up with a few things. I will forward some pictures with this letter.”

Congratulations to all concerned – it seems to have been a great party! The fact that you’ve reached the age you have, is rather scary – that you’ve manged to stay married 50 years is awesome!


Onion Allergy

Thanks to Facebook, you may now be aware that I’m allergic to onion! I only started noticing an allergy rash a few years ago and it took me simply ages and a process of dietary elimination before I concluded that onions were my problem. In more ways than one, because I love the taste! Here’s something from via my son Ed.

“If you feel strange discomfort and breakout of rashes etc after consuming onions, you suffer from a rare onion allergy. This allergy is caused by exposure to or consumption of onions. Usually those who suffer from this allergy experience bloating, gas and digestive discomfort. However, generally but not always onion allergy is caused by raw onions.

For those who suffer from onion allergy, cooking the vegetables before consumption might help overcome this allergy in some cases. Usually those who are allergic to onions could also be allergic to garlic.

Onion Allergy Symptoms:
Since onion allergy is a contact allergy, most of the symptoms of contact dermatitis are apparent in this allergy. There are symptoms that occur on the skin, as well as discomfort in the digestive tract. Some of the common symptoms are:

* Breaking out of skin in hives,
* Itching all over the body,
* Bloating,
* Gas,
* Nausea,
* Diarrhea
* Headaches and migraines

Though possible, it is rare for onion allergy to become fatal. Some people who have a severe allergy to onions may go into an anaphylactic shock and should therefore be extra careful while eating these.

Usually, those who claim to have an allergy to onions, are simply intolerant to onions. They may experience cramping and bloating in their abdomen which is because the body is unable to process and digest raw onions. This is usually manifested in the form of indigestion and therefore can be differentiated from an actual allergic reaction.

For onion allergy, anti histamines and over the counter drugs might prove useful. Topical steroids are usually used to treat skin reactions and hives that may have broken out on the skin. If the allergy is severe, contact a doctor immediately.

I’ve been ill this week as a result of one of the cooks in the kitchen at Chanters Lodge forgetting my problem – it happens!


Design Museum Exhibition

My daughter-in-law Jo Gaffkin is technical manager at the Design Museum in London and at the moment they have a very interesting exhibition at the museum:

“One of the leading architects of his generation, David Adjaye has stepped out of his regular line of work to photograph and document key cities in Africa as part of an ongoing project to study new patterns of urbanism. Often regarded as a continent defined by underdevelopment, poverty, war and tourism, through this exhibition Adjaye presents Africa in a different light, examining the buildings and places which have a special resonance with his preoccupations as an architect.
This detailed survey will reveal a unique snapshot of life in Africa today, documenting the nature of urban life in a developing continent, a unique geo-cultural survey profiling the African city in a global context.”

Is the picture David Adjaye? Nope, it’s Jo and husband Jan Chanter on top of the mighty Victoria Falls! Now there’s a photo!


No Limit

Seth Godin gets it right on his blog. I wish more people had this attitude.

“It’s absurd to look at a three year old toddler and say, “this kid can’t read or do math or even string together a coherent paragraph. He’s a dolt and he’s never going to amount to anything.” No, we don’t say that because we know we can teach and motivate and cajole the typical kid to be able to do all of these things. Why is it okay, then, to look at a teenager and say, “this kid will never be a leader, never run a significant organization, never save a life, never inspire or create…”

Just because it’s difficult to grade doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be taught. Never mind a teenager. I think it’s wrong to say that about someone who’s fifty.

Isn’t it absurd to focus so much energy on ‘practical’ skills that prep someone for a life of following instructions but relentlessly avoid the difficult work necessary to push someone to reinvent themselves into becoming someone who makes a difference?

And isn’t it even worse to write off a person or an organization merely because of what they are instead of what they might become?”

The picture? Or son Henry nearly 8 and full of it, enjoying a day out in Botswana!

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