Much of a muchness

Things that make you go 'hmm'…

Tag Archives: Australia

Birthday surprises…

On my birthday, I was pleased and proud, nay, I was dead chuffed even, to be approved by the World Blog Council. It just goes to show what a lot of grovelling can achieve and that flattery really does get you anywhere. I am in such illustrious company, I can hardly believe I was accepted, so many thanks to the Prof., the Colonel, Frau von Sauertraut (great hairdo) and all at the World Blog Council. Their gracious comments are below this amazing badge which shows the other WBC approved blogs.


“A good Frau from Dorset with an almost unhealthy obsession with bookbinding. ‘Much of a muchness’ ist a delightful blog written by a woman of many talents. When she ist not hopping around the South of France or Kalifornia, her blogging ist a nice glimpse into the busy life of this creative empty nest. However, when I tried her ribbon binding tutorial, the Colonel ended up tied to his office chair with polka dots all over his popo. But this blogger also has gut hair so ja, this application ist approved”.

Frau von Sauertraut, Cultural Advisor

“Well – I believe our Cultural advisor has summed everything up beautifully and as I am still tied to my chair (obviously I’m dictating this to Ms Tutt) I feel duty bound to grant approval.

Now Frau von Sauertraut – tell me more about this ‘popo’ of mine and how do we get rid of these pesky polka dots…?”

Colonel Reginald Fotherington-Blogworthy II CEO, MD, ARSE

Aw shucks! I’m blushing!

And now for some more exciting news (well, for me anyway….) Here’s a clue.

My birthday ‘celebrations’ might be over, my lovely sons might have gone back to their respective homes and Milo might still be snuffling around, wondering where his new playmates have gone to and although I am sad , as always, when my boys leave, I am also REALLY EXCITED!! It’s been a wonderful few days, the climax of which was the presentation of my birthday present – a joint gift from my sons (and their dad) – an air ticket to Australia – the trip to be taken, as and when I like!

Once I had checked it was a return ticket and I wasn’t being transported to the colonies, I was absolutely thrilled. I am hoping that I can go early in the new year so that it will still be summer down under. I have several friends and a sister who live in various parts of Australia so I hope that I can get to see lots of places. I’m really getting the travel bug but this will be my biggest adventure yet so I am going to plan it carefully. I am open to suggestions of places I really MUST see. Here’s a little music to get me in the mood….

Now I’d better get in touch with my Antipodean friends and family to warn them….


When I was a little girl aged 9, one of my best friends was a boy called Andrew. He lived just down the road from my family, his mum was my mum’s friend and his sisters played with mine. We were friends until his family emigrated to Australia when I was 14.

Years later, when I was married and living in Hemel Hempstead, I went into London for the day with my husband and some friends. We decided not to drive into the centre of London so we parked in St John’s Wood and caught the tube. We got on the first train that arrived but quickly realised we were going in the wrong direction so we jumped off that train, ran across the platform and jumped on one going the right way. As we sat chatting, a guy who was sitting next to us, said ‘Hello, Diane’ – it was Andrew with his wife, Helen. They had come back to the UK to see if they wanted to return permanently and were living in – you’ve guessed it – Hemel Hempstead! They had just made the decision to return to Australia, and it was another 20 years until we met again for the day in London while they were on a visit in 2002 and I met them again this week. Each time we meet, it’s like we had only seen each other a few days ago – except with lots of news to catch up on.

If we had not decided to go into London that day, not decided to park in St Johns Wood, not got on the wrong train, not sat in that particular carriage….we would probably have never met up again. On the way home on the train yesterday, I sent them a text to thank them for the visit and to wish them a safe journey home, just as I pressed ‘send’ a text arrived from them saying the same thing. Spooky!

I love hearing stories of coincidences like these – synchronicity, happenstance – whatever you call it. All a bit ‘Sliding Doors’. Now that was a depressing film…and a happy one at the same time…. There was one particular quote from this film which made me laugh

‘Gerry, I’m a woman! We don’t say what we WANT! But we reserve the right to get pissed off if we don’t get it. That’s what makes us so fascinating! And not a little bit scary.’

You have been warned!

I also must recommend a great book by Carol Shields which I read years ago called ‘Happenstance’. It was the story of a marriage told from first the wife’s perspective and then when you had finished the first half of the book, you turned it over and started reading from the front again – the husband’s story, or of course, you could have started the other way round. I have always thought it was a clever way to show that there are two sides to every story and giving both of them equal importance.

By the way, the illustration at the top of the page is by Edward Monkton, who makes a range of hilarious greeting cards, based on the ‘Interesting Thoughts of Edward Monkton’.