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Spring, already?

March 24, 2017

I’m not sure where most of March has gone, in fact I’m not sure what happened to February either. If you’d asked me earlier in the week what month we were in I’d have confidently stated we were near the end of January. It would appear I’m a little behind the times – handy for a historian of archaeology, not so useful for real life. I’ve reluctantly come to the conclusion that my calendar hasn’t been altered by someone for a laugh and it really is nearly the end of March. All the signs are there, my daffodils have gone over and the tulips are coming through, Lambcam has finished for the year and the 10 year old is telling me he’s 11 next week. So, what have I got to tell you? What have I got to show for the missing month or two where I haven’t been blogging? Remarkably little. This turret of HARN Towers has been having some much needed renovations.

HARN Towers

The amount of disturbance should have transformed this (Copyright Paul Brooker )



into this. But from the outside you wouldn’t notice any difference. HOW CAN SOMETHING SO MINOR TAKE SO LONG AND SEND ME SO CRAZY?

It looks much better now, but it was stressful and disruptive while it was being done and nothing intellectual (or even intelligent it would seem) happened in my brain for the duration. I’d like to say I’m back, firing on all cylinders and ready for deep thoughts about all matters archaeological and historical but this would be a lie, I’m shambling around like a B movie Zombie or Mummy* groaning ‘coffffeeeeeeee,  caaaaaake, schoooooool letterzzzzz, where the hell did I put my glasses this time?’ I may have to distract you with gambolling lambs while I collect the few thoughts I have

(There are lots of lovely lamb photos on that page, but if lambs don’t distract and soothe you then how about kittens? A live webcam of kittenage, it is my most favourite thing ever – and may go some way to explaining why I’ve been so unproductive of late – and is giving me great comfort as the news from London unfolds and as we hurtle towards Brexit-land)

I have been reading, or trying to read, Men From the Ministry by Simon Thurley.


Isn’t the cover wonderful? It’s taken from an advert for Shell from 1931 by E. McKnight Kauffer. There’s more of his work here.

I began reading it with great enthusiasm having found it in our library and after seeing this review by Rosemary Hill whose Stonehenge I’ve long been meaning to read. The enthusiasm has waned, this could be me suffering from inattention, it could be Thurley’s inexplicable omission of photos of kittens and lambs, or it could be that it’s simply not very good. I am in awe of anyone who manages to write a book, but, as I often tell the children, just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it. Admittedly Simon Thurley isn’t likely to write on my newly painted walls with pink felt tip, but equally just because he could write a book about the history of English Heritage doesn’t mean he should have done so. I discovered while I was doing my PhD that I could write chapters of a bonkbuster to entertain my fellow researchers, it’s certainly not what I should have been doing, but I digress, again. Anyway, I’m still undecided as to whether the fault lies with me, Mr Thurley or the absence of kittens. I shall continue reading and probably produce a review for you.

I do have some reviews and blog posts from other people too, Jon and Martyn have promised me reviews and I think Kate has a post too.

There will be news of HARN 2017 – just as soon as I get myself organised and stop lurching about the place looking for cake/coffee/letters and my spectacles.

Next week, perhaps.

In the meantime, stay safe, have a good weekend, but mainly stay safe


*Yes, it’s a rubbish pun but I felt compelled to write it.

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