And here is the second attempt in progress on a new type of paper. Not so great for washes, but good for detail.
The other Sunday we paid a visit with Val to an old friend, Joanne Dalston, in Bampton. She made a lovely lunch, and later we had tea in her garden. I love the Cotswolds and Joanne converted what was an old cowshed into one of the most homely homes I know. I first met Joanne and her husband Chris in Singapore in the 70's when they were serving in the Royal Airforce there. Nicola, Joanne's daughter, lives in America but visits her mother regularly. When she's here she becomes a hive of activity and helps her mother in many ways. Last month she worked in the garden - and this is the result. You can see Val and Joanne peering over the top of the door.
On Saturday we went to The Town and Visitors Regatta in Henley. This is our local regatta and is such a friendly affair. As a member I was able to get aboard one of the umpire launches with MYF and follow one of the races. We followed this women's eight from the start to the finish near the Henley bridge.
And back for a complimentary Pimms in the members tent. Here's Tony Hobbs and John Luker - well-known Henley characters. Tony owns the Hobbs Boatyard and a number of boats, including The New Orleans riverboat. John, until he retired, was the chairman of The Henley Standard newspaper.
I've just been watching the 70th Anniversary commemoration ceremony of VJ Day. Great to see so many veterans from Burma and the Far East parading in London. Bemedallled and spritely old soldiers, brimming with humour and recalling days past. Hard to believe that some of them are in their nineties, and even a few hundred year-olds. Having been in the army in Asia myself, although obviously never experiencing the hardships of the veterans who survived the Japanese prisoner of war camps, I really do admire them for their fortitude under appalling conditions.
And I remember exactly what I was doing on VJ Day all those years ago. I'd broken my knee-cap by landing heavily on my feet in the long jump at the school sports day the previous week and was encased in plaster up to my thighs. So all I could do was sit in the bay window of our house with my leg on a chair while I watched all the other children sitting down to a tea party on long tables that stretched down our road! Huh! Hope my mother brought me a cake!