Monday, 26 April 2010

Monday 26th April 10

A good day... woke late and then took some time making up my muesli, which included cracking loads of nuts and finding about 8 sorts of home-dried fruit, chopping them up and mixing them into the muesli base.

Then did a little bit more work outside, mainly filling the raised bed again, this time with the clay soil which came out of the trench which now has a wall coming out of it near our other raised beds further up the garden. I riddled the soil to break up the lumps and allow it to be spread evenly and mixed with the compost and spent potting media.

I also did a little bit of chainsawing, and fruit drying... but it was a nicely nothingy day, spent with the birdsong and the friendly robins who love what I do!

Until 5pm, that is, when I had a shower (in solar heated water, I've worked out how to do it!) Gill made a pasta and mushroom thing which I enjoyed with some home-made bread fresh out of the oven, which she had made because she couldn't be bothered to go to the shops. She is brilliant, a superb cook and we are so lucky!

At 5.30, I cycled off to the BBC Radio York Live Hustings event at the Folk Hall in New Earswick. This was for York Outer, a new constituency, and I'd been invited to attend, not sure why as I'm a voter in York Central. I got there at 6pm and chatted to an old chap called John whom I've seen at lots of meetings, plus a nice couple, sitting the on other side to John.

The producer, Phil Squire, explained the format, rules and 'warmed us up' with some funny stories of radio phone ins. Then the presenter, Jonathan Cowap, introduced the panel, who were Madeleine Kirk (Lib Dem), James Alexander (Labour), Julian Sturdy (Tory) and Baroness Haleh Afshar who is a Professor of politics at York University. There was a lot of talk about the economy and jobs, and it was interesting seeing the candidates dealing with the questions, and the good-humoured Baroness Afshar's responses were worth hearing as well. There was a question about the cessation of pain relief injections for back pain, because the National Institute of Clinical Excellence deems them ineffective, and thinks that there are other more effective methods available. The Labour candidate said he was asking for a review of this policy, but also said that he was keen on evidence-based medicine. I managed to make a comment about whether the local Primary Care Trust might stop supplying homeopathic remedies under this policy too.

The last question was good... the panel was asked that if there was a form of proportional representation with a transferable vote, who would they give their second vote for. Haleh Afshar said that as she was in the House of Lords, she couldn't vote (I didn't know this!). Madeleine Kirk said she wouldn't use her second vote (to boos from the audience!) and James Alexander said that if there was a Green candidate, he'd put his vote that way. I clapped, but I think I was the only Green in the audience. Then Julian Sturdy mumbled his way through a load of excuses and said he'd put his second vote to the UKIP, to howls of derision from the audience. It was a good final bit of grave-digging from him!

And that was that... the hour was over, it was 8pm, and I was home well before 9, when I did the washing up and settled down to watch the news and do some facebooking and email removal.

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