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janna

janna
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Member since: 24.09.2000

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      04.07.2002 21:11
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      My husband, when he is not working overseas, occupies his time with HGV driving in this country. Although at the moment he is transporting double glazing units, during the last couple of years he has on occasion worked as an owner-driver for Safeway distributing frozen food, dry goods etc. from warehouses to supermarkets. When he is doing this type of work, he is frequently offered items either free of charge or at a greatly reduced price that have been damaged; very often it is just the outer casing that is broken. For instance, we have 56 tins of cat food in the garage although we don’t have a cat. My sister-in-law (she of “A tail of rescued cats… all seventeen of them” fame) has many rescued cats, so it will not be wasted. Our deep freezer is currently full of frozen chips, although we are both trying to diet, and 12 bags of “Sizzling Cajun Style Chicken” with cooking instructions for “Sizzling Prawn Cantonese Style” printed on the reverse. I am sure by now that the reader can tell where this opinion is going…. Last year he also brought home 48 (yes, that’s right forty-eight) cans of Dove Ultra Moisturising Body Wash (I am so heartily sick of this product, I can no longer look at it let alone write about it!) and more recently a dozen bottles of Clairol Herbal Essences Shampoo. This particular replenishing shampoo is recommended for use on coloured, permed, dry or damaged hair. Ahhh at last a product that I will use! It is blended with natural rose hips, vitamin E and jojoba in mountain spring water. Replenisher shampoo helps to restore and protect damaged hair and the plant derived ingredients help to nourish hair leaving it feeling luxuriously soft and healthy; or so they say…. For extra benefit, Clairol recommend that this should be used with Herbal Essences Protection Conditioner (Oh, bother, this is one I shall have to buy). Pleasing to the
      eye, this product is a thick gel, which is pale pink in colour and comes in a 250ml clear plastic bottle with a dark green plastic cap with a flip lid. A picture of pink, long-stemmed roses is visible on the inside of the bottle. Incidentally the shampoo bottles use 25% post-consumer plastic and can be recycled (which is just what you wanted to know, isn’t it?). Normally £2.20 per bottle; it was recently on offer at Safeway for £2.20 for the shampoo and the conditioner. But my dozen, very slightly damaged bottles of the shampoo were FREE, nur nur, nurner, nur…. Suitable for vegetarians (but you’re not going to drink the stuff, are you?) all ingredients come from renewable plant sources; no animal by-products are used and herbs are grown under organic conditions – no pesticides or petrochemicals are used. Usual instructions for use apply ~  Wet Hair  Apply shampoo and massage well  Rinse thoroughly My verdict ~ ********* I have thick blonde curly hair. These days it tends to be ‘colour assisted’ to hide the grey streaks that can be found around the hairline. I have been using this shampoo on a regular basis (well, you would when you have 12 bottles of the stuff to use, wouldn’t you?). I need only use a little shampoo in order to work up a good lather. It has a fragrant aroma of roses mingled with a slight fruity smell, which is pleasant but not overpowering. I have used the product in conjunction with a Conditioner and although it does not leave my hair shiny, it does feel very soft and natural looking; and leaves my thick hair tangle free. I do like the clear bottle, because at least you can see how much shampoo there is left inside. I have been known to stand bottles of shampoo upside down in order to get the last dregs out (I do this with wine toooo!) but with eleven more bottles of the stuff to go, who cares…..
      You will find other shampoos in the Clairol Herbal Essences range to suit all hair types. Ingredients~ ********** Well, I could give you a list of the ingredients here, but I would need a magnifying glass to read the back of the bottle and you would need a science degree to understand them! And finally ~ ********* Recommended, so I won’t be giving away my bottles of Clairol Herbal Essences Shampoo. Now, does anyone want to try Dove Ultra Moisturising Body Wash…. only 23 cans of the stuff left….? Janna 4th July 2002

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      • Iams in General / Discussion / 4 Readings / 19 Ratings
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        12.06.2002 05:30
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        Please let me introduce myself, I’m Barnaby, but you can call me Barney once we get to know each other. And let me tell you I do ALL the important jobs at our Livery Yard. I know you will all think that the yard staff do the hard work; looking after all the horses; staying up all night when they are sick or due to foal; shifting heavy bales of hay and straw; lugging around sacks of horse feed and bags of carrots. But just let me tell you – there would be no staff here if it weren’t for me! The yard staff are all ‘girlies’, and when the chips are down they run for cover. Phil, the owner is OK though – he is a man too – but he does not possess my sleek good looks, hawk-like vision, razor-sharp hearing, sensitivity of whisker, stealth of paw … I could go on and on but I am far too modest. As soon as a bag of horse feed is found with a hole chewed in it, the cry goes out “Has anyone seen Barney?” And where can I be found? I will be hard at work curled up on my favourite chair in the Tack Room. So then I’ve got to get up, wash myself (very important for me) and get dressed. I am spoiled for choice but always end up with the same little black and white outfit. After a leisurely breakfast I stroll over to the stables to see what all the fuss is about. It defies superior feline logic that these humans think nothing of dealing with half a ton of bad tempered stallion, but one small rodent can turn them into jelly! They are giving me lots of fuss and attention now and although I can’t be doing with all that adulation, I wouldn’t want to disappoint my fans. So, I strut around draping myself decoratively around their legs, and I try to look pleased with myself for their sakes. It really is a tough job, but someone’s got to do it! And what do I get paid for all this hard work I have to endure? BISCUITS! Iams Adult 1+ to be precise. It is available
        in four flavours – Chicken, Lamb, Light Chicken and my favourite Ocean Fish. These are small brown bite size biscuits, just right for us cats. Phil buys these for me from Costcutter; a 300g bag normally costs £1.79, but they are on offer for 99p at present. Packaged in a bright orange sealed bag; this is a complete pet food for adult cats who are aged one year or more. It is specially formulated to provide me with all the nutrition that I need to keep me fit and active and chasing the mice. The ingredients for Iams Adult 1+ Ocean Fish variety are: Ocean fish, chicken meal, rice, maize, animal fat, dried whole egg, dried beet pulp, poultry digest, brewer’s dried yeast, DL-methionine, sodium chloride Of course, I didn’t always have Iams, but Phil decided to see if I liked this and gradually introduced me to this catfood over a period of four days. He always ensures that I have a bowl of fresh water. But if I am thirsty when I am out and about, I can always have a drink from one of the horses water troughs (I just have to avoid that stallion though). The 300g bag is sufficient to give me 12 meals based on the average needs of a large cat like myself, and the ingredients contain no colourants, flavourings or preservatives. The bag contains feeding guidelines for small, medium and large sized cats in several different languages. So, after having eaten Iams for the past few months what do I think of this food? Well, I like it although it took a while for me to get used to it. It is crunchy and tasty and unlike tinned catfoods, it stays fresh. If I leave it and then decide to come back for later on, it has not dried up or attracted the flies like tinned food seems too. I have a sleek glossy coat and Phil tells me that due to the higher fibre content I have firmer stools!! (I don’t know what he means – I much prefer to snooze on a comfy armchair, I wouldn’t give you tuppence for a
        firm stool!) Iams is also supposed to help in preventing the build up of tartar on my teeth, but I keep my jaws firmly clamped together when Phil tries to inspect my mouth. I’m not having any of that… Iams is not just for adult cats. It is also available in the following types:  Iams Hairball Control – which is designed to reduced hairball formation  Iams Kitten – designed for the younger cat of less than one year old  Iams Light – designed for those cats who need to watch their weight  Iams Senior – designed to suit the needs of the older cat Now, as I’ve eaten my Iams Adult food and taken a nap, I’m off for a stroll over to the farm next door. A very pretty pussy, wearing a grey and white fluffy little number, has recently moved in and she is just purrrrrrfect. I have caught her eye once or twice and being a full blooded lusty young male I just might be able to bring a sparkle to her eyes…. Barnaby PS I bet you didn’t know that cats could write so well, did you? 11th June 2002 ~*Factfile*~ Iams Consumer Services: PO Box 1EL Newcastle upon Tyne NE99 1EL Iams Care Line (Free): 0808 100 70 10

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          15.05.2002 03:15
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          • "steep hillside"

          I have written this opinion to serve a warning to anyone who may be contemplating a stay at this Complex, it is burgled on a regular basis, but at least one thief did not get away, but more about that later…. In January of this year we booked an Airtours Sundeal two-week holiday to Tenerife flying from Norwich International Airport in April. I have already written an opinion on this Airport, so I will give “Bigger is not always Better” a plug here, if you don’t mind. This holiday was to be ‘Allocated on Arrival’ in Tenerife staying at a minimum 2 star hotel/apartment complex on a self-catering basis for a total cost of £221 each. Four hours flying time later we landed in Tenerife in the hot, afternoon heat. White Mediterranean-style apartment complexes are jammed closely together stretching up the hillside close to the coast in the Torviscas area of Playa de las Americas. My outstanding memory (apart from the burglaries) of the Atalaya Court Apartments in the Torviscas area of Playa de las Americas in Tenerife is steps, steps and even more STEPS! On arrival at this Complex we were issued with a map for finding our apartment. After a considerable amount of walking and nine flights of steps later, dragging heavy suitcases (why did I pack so much?), we found our apartment. Patio doors open into a lounge/kitchenette with the usual cooker, fridge and well equipped pots and pans etc. There was a comfortable settee, which could be used as an extra bed, armchair, table and four chairs – not modern but comfortable and clean. Despite there being only two of us, we had been allocated a 2-bedroomed apartment; the largest bedroom had an ensuite toilet and hand basin. There was sufficient wardrobe space, ample coat hangers and drawers; patio doors again opening onto the terrace. Bathroom consisted of a bath with overhead shower, toilet, bidet, washbasin and a very large mirror. There was no air-conditioning or fans and no windows. If you found it too hot to sleep at night, the only way to allow air into your apartment was to leave the patio doors in the bedroom open. Outside a large terraced area was furnished with a plastic circular table and four chairs – one of which my husband sat on and broke (glad it wasn’t me – I would never have heard the end of it!). There was also a drying frame for your hand washing. Maids came into the apartment every day with the exception of weekends to clean and make beds; towels were changed fairly regularly. Altogether the Apartment Complex was vast spreading across the hillside on about six or seven levels. Because of it’s layout, it would be impossible to install lifts. It would also be completely unsuitable for anyone with walking difficulties. Believe me, we were exhausted just getting out of the Complex. To get to the beach/ or into town, you walk down a steep hill to a road bridge over the main TF1 motorway continuing down the hill to restaurants, shops and eventually the beach. Take my word for it, unless you are young and fit don’t try walking back up the hill, take a taxi instead – it will cost you 2 or 3 Euros. Alternately you could take a courtesy bus to the beach. This leaves from the adjacent Neptuno Hotel and costs 30 cents each way. A timetable is available from Reception. Cash/travellers cheques can be exchanged for Euros at the Reception Desk or when you go into town, but we found that we received the best rate of exchange at the Thomas Cook Bureau de Change at Norwich Airport prior to departure. The apartment complex contains two swimming pools on different levels, one of which is a smaller ‘dip’ pool. The other is larger with a shallow end for children. Furnished with sun loungers this was a pleasant area – well, it would have been if it wasn’t for the loud music
          emanating from the poolside snack bar. The ‘music’ consisted of what appeared to be a c.d. compilation of failed Spanish Eurovision Song Contest entries. Almost daily by the pool we were treated to “I am your Sun and Skin Care Specialist”. I would have thought this to be an excellent idea, but they are only interested in flogging their own Aloe Vera products and some of the information they gave, encouraging holiday makers not to use the products they have brought with them, was incorrect. A small supermarket is contained in this complex. But you don’t want to do your shopping here – walk down the hill to the Supermercado in the Rio Centre where you will find prices are more competitively priced and then take a taxi (rank opposite) back to the Atalaya. Alternately use the Netto Supermarket, approximately a 5 minute walk away; a modern, new Supermarket, well lit and clean and with reasonable prices. A Danish Bakery is situated just along the road from the Atalaya and next to the Regency Club. Buy your croissants and cakes here – they were truly wonderful and will melt in your mouth. Although there were no organised daytime activities, evening entertainment was provided most evenings by way of two male singers (suitable as Flop Idol contestants!) in the bar area which is situated next to the restaurant. We ate on two occasions in the Atalaya restaurant. We enjoyed our meals; they were nicely cooked, well presented and the restaurant staff are pleasant. Prices were reasonable although you will find cheaper restaurants (and a wider variety) when you go into town. The Hotel Group who own the Atalaya Apartments also own the Laguna Park I and Laguna Park II Apartments. Situated closely together, it is possible to visit the Laguna Park II Apartments by taking a track down the hillside. These apartments had a large and impressive free-form outdoor swimming pool. Holidaym
          akers from the Atalaya were making use of the facilities of the Laguna. Before I finish you may be asking about the relevance of the title of this opinion. During the coach journey to the Atalaya we were warned of three pests: time-share touts, the looky looky men, and cockroaches. What everyone (Airtours and Hotel staff) failed to tell us is that burglary is commonplace at the Laguna Park II and Atalaya Apartments. (In fact, we found out later that the Laguna Park II has been featured on the television programme “Holidays from Hell” due to the numerous break-ins). On the second night of our holiday a young couple with a small child found that their money had been stolen during the night as they slept. As I have previously mentioned there are no windows and to allow air into the stiflingly hot apartments, you obviously take a risk if you leave your bedroom patio doors open whilst you are sleeping. A week later another couple returning to their locked apartment in the early hours of the morning found a thief inside. Despite the holiday maker giving chase, the thief escaped with a camera. On another occasion, we awoke to hear someone outside trying to open our door with a key during the night. We had locked the door and left the key in it, so no one could gain entry. It was still a very frightening experience. A few nights before we were due to depart; we were awakened by a commotion in the apartment immediately above ours. Three men on a short break from the UK occupied this apartment. The thief was caught red-handed and apprehended by one of the men whilst the others called hotel staff and the police. I would think that the thief, of Spanish nationality, got the shock of his life – two of these men were big, burly fellows or as my husband said “were built like concrete sh*thouses!” (pardon the expression – he can be soooo crude at times!). And if there is anyone out t
          here who is still contemplating visiting the Atalaya Court Apartments, I would recommend that you pay for a safety deposit box and put all of their valuables inside. When you go out in the evening leave lights/television on in your apartment. Keep your patio doors locked at night and leave your key inside in the lock, as it is quite obvious that some of these thieves had keys! And don’t expect any sympathy from the Airtours Representatives at this Complex as they have adopted a “no care” attitude! They obviously know about the regular burglaries, why were we not warned in advance? Are they waiting until a burglar injures a tourist, because this could easily happen? On the night before we were due to depart, a thief broke into an apartment occupied by a woman and her three children stealing £400, a video camera and taking a bag containing her son’s homework and course books. Many problems of this nature would be overcome if the Atalaya installed bolts on the inside of all patio doors and employed night security staff – at least this would be a deterrent to the burglar. Janna 14th May 2002 ~* Factfile*~ Atalaya Court Apartments Playa de las Americas Official Rating: 3 key Board Basis: Self-Catering Brochure Price for same 2-week period: £419 per person Telephone 00 34922 712750 Available from Airtours www.airtours.co.uk PS. Since writing this opinion I have contacted Going Places (who we booked the holiday through) and they agree with me that Airtours should not be sending holidaymakers to the Atalaya Court Apartments. A letter is on it’s way to Airtours. Depending on the outcome of this, I may write separately about this matter in the ‘Tour Operators’ category.

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          • Most Embarrassing Moments / Discussion / 0 Readings / 38 Ratings
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            14.05.2002 01:16
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            To celebrate my half-centenary, fifty opinions that is, nothing to do with my age, I decided to submit this opinion giving details of embarrassing moments in my life. Some of these incidents were not necessarily embarrassing, but were funny, if not at the time, then later. I hope you enjoy….. The Wedding Cake **************** After my wedding, we all went to a local Hotel for the reception. My mother had made this absolutely wonderful 3-tier wedding cake. After the top tiers had been removed, my new husband and I went to cut the cake, surrounded by all of our guests, but he somehow managed to put his hand on the blade (well, isn’t that a stupid thing to do?). I didn’t notice what he had done and damn near chopped his finger off! Of course, blood splattered everywhere, turning the icing a delicate shade of pink. So we spent the evening of our wedding at the local Hospital. To this day he says it was my fault, but believe me, it wasn’t! The Spider ********* If you have read any of my earlier opinions, you may know that some years ago I owned a pet shop specialising in the sale of tropical fish, reptiles and amphibians. So you are going to ask here why is she frightened of spiders when she has been bitten by a piranha and was nearly strangled by a reticulated python? The answer is I am terrified of them, but this may have something to do with an incident that happened many many years ago. Husband and I went on a holiday to Spain by coach. We had travelled through France by night and being unable to sleep, we were all pretty tired when we stopped for breakfast in a café on the Spanish border. The whole coach party filed into this little café. I happened to look down on the floor and there IT was – the most enormous spider I have ever seen. The floor was tiled with black and white tiles, so one minute I could see it and when IT moved on to a bl
            ack tile it disappeared into the blackness. With everyone looking at me I stood up and screamed and screamed and screamed and then promptly burst into tears; making a complete spectacle of myself. Husband kicked it (yes, kicked it – it was THAT big) outside and into the gutter. And for at least the next hour, I was a complete sobbing, shivering nervous wreck. Peeing in the sand (not me, you understand) ***************** As you may know I own and ride a Shire horse; this breed is the supreme draught horse, and he is a big, heavy animal. Big, in every way, if you know what I mean and if you don’t I will leave it to your imagination, read on… It was the height of summer and I had taken him onto the local beach (we mostly go when it is quieter). We usually manage to attract a crowd. I have often found this; people like to pat him or talk to me. On this occasion, we were surrounded by a group of about 20 people – adults and children. We have had a few scary moments on the beach, but at least he was standing quietly and behaving himself. And I was feeling very pleased with him, for being so well behaved. But, he then decided to take a pee. And when he goes, he goes, the sand turns into a stream gushing down the beach. All the children are now cheering, giggling and pointing. All, that is, except for one little girl of about 5 years old who turned to her mother and said in a loud voice for everyone to hear “Is he a boy, mummy?” You have been Framed ******************** A friend owns an ex-police horse, called Dolly. She is a Cleveland Bay, another large breed. Occasionally, the two of us and our horses go for rides on the beach. Keep in mind that Dolly is police trained, beautifully behaved and has never been known to misbehave – until one particular day, that is. We were having a nice walk along the water’s edge, wh
            en suddenly my friend screams. I turn round to see Dolly getting down to roll in the water – rider, saddle & everything. My friend jumped off her and managed to pull her up; the horse reared up and took off in a gallop across the sands and away……. with my horse in pursuit (I don’t know why I expected him to stand quietly!) I stayed on his back by sheer fluke, nothing to do with horsemanship. Unfortunately (for us) someone with a camcorder filmed everything. So, if you see two large brown horses acting like rodeo horses and galloping all over the beach, and one middle-aged rider hanging on for dear life on “You’ve been Framed” – it wasn’t me!! A Crabby Tale! ************* In the 1970’s and early 80’s when we owned a tropical fish business, we were one of the first importers of Land Hermit Crabs. One of the local newspapers got to hear about this and printed a story on the front page of their newspaper, the title of which in large bold headline was “THE GIRL WHO HAS CRABS!” I do think they could have re-phrased this terminology; you can imagine the comments from my neighbours and friends and sneaky glances from others who didn’t know me that well! Toothless in Tenerife ****************** My two front teeth are crowned; this dentistry was carried out about 15 years ago. In fact, so long ago that I had almost forgotten about it; that is, until 2 days into my first holiday in Tenerife when I bit into a sandwich and both teeth simultaneously broke off near the gum. I extricated the teeth from my sarnie and despite trying to superglue them back into place, I had to spend the next 12 days with a great toothless gap where my front teeth should have been! You try talking without opening your mouth and smiling is damn nigh impossible! To make it worse I was chatted up (doesn’t often
            happen at my age!) by a bloke at a Petrol Filling Station – well there is no way you can respond (one way or another) when you cannot open your mouth. I turned bright red (normally I am not that easily embarrassed) got into my hire car and drove off. A Night out that everyone heard about… ********************************* I had just left school and started my first job. I was a Cost Clerk in a canning factory. I was still a bit silly and giggly in those days and was have a good old girly natter with a work colleague in the office that we shared. Unfortunately, someone had left the tannoy on so the whole of the factory floor was treated to my exploits the night before. I’m not going into detail here but it involved being in a certain state of undress in the back of a boyfriend’s car and a policeman shining his torch through the back window. My job as a Cost Clerk did not last too long – not because of my embarrassment I hasten to add, but because it was the most boring job that I have ever had the misfortune to do. Riding with the Household Cavalry! ****************************** The Household Cavalry comes to East Anglia every year for a break and they exercise their horses on the beach. As you have probably gathered by now, I often take my horse on the beach, but he is extremely unpredictable (he is beautifully behaved on the road by the way). If he sees other horses, he either turns into a Big Girly and bolts in the opposite direction; or, on occasion he thinks that he is in a race and chases after them. A Shire horse is extremely strong and there is no pulling him up. If you have ever seen a Shire galloping, they are lovely to watch, but not so nice if you are trying to stay on board. And you may have guessed what happened, he charged after about thirty or so horses to cries of “Ride ‘em gal” from their male riders. I
            had the last laugh though, I managed not to fall off, whilst several of their riders hit the sand! And finally one little incident that caused my husband some embarrassment… ************* We were holidaying in Gran Canaria at the time. The Yumbo Centre is one of the Commercial Centres of Playa del Ingles and I must tell the reader about something that happened to my husband – he pulled!! (but not in a way you might expect). The ground floor of this Centre offers lively evening entertainment, and is a great place for people watching due to it’s numerous gay bars. On our first visit, we chose a bar where couples (of the one male with one female variety) were sitting. The owner of the bar, a very distinguished looking English gent in his 70’s, took a liking to my husband. It was all very good-natured, but since then husband has had to endure such comments as “Would he like to be an elderly man’s toyboy?” (husband was 48 at the time). And to this day, husband says “He wasn’t anywhere near 70 years old!” But believe me, he was. Hope you enjoyed, Janna

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              11.05.2002 03:44
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              A True story Scene: The Bathroom The Cast: Husband (who bares an uncanny resemblance to Victor Meldrew) Janna (his long suffering wife) Husband: What is this white box doing next to the toilet? Janna: They are Andrex Moist Toilet Tissue, I thought we would try them for a change. Husband: Ohhhh, you mean arse wipes. Whatever ever possessed you to buy them? Janna: They were recommended on Ciao either by scattyredhead or cheekychicken, I can’t quite remember which! Husband: Well, you’d better ask her what I ‘m supposed to do with them; with a name like Cheeky she ought to know! *~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ A few days before the above conversation I found Andrex Moist Toilet Tissues tucked away on the top shelf of my local Safeway next to the conventional toilet rolls and decided I would try these after having read several favourable opinions on Ciao and dooyoo. They were not very clearly displayed; in fact I had to walk down the aisle a couple of times before I found them. Safeway had them on sale for £1.89 the same price as the refill packs. But don’t all rush out to Safeway; this was the Fakenham store and they had made a pricing mistake. I believe the tissues supplied in the tub are around £4.00. For some time Victor, errrr I mean my husband, has suffered an intense attack of hypochondria. At one time he believed that he had contacted Spode’s Disease, a fatal disease that normally only attacks potatoes! Recently he has been checking his stools to ensure that they are healthy. So, I thought he might like to try this product. Kimberly Clark Ltd. manufactures this product. Four young American businessmen founded this company in 1872. It is responsible for some of the world’s leading trademarks – Huggies, Kleenex, Kotex, Pull-Ups and of course Andrex; manufacturing facial tissue, f
              eminine pads, paper towels, toilet rolls, moist toilet tissue and disposable training pants; their products are world-wide best sellers. As a child, I remember my Grandmother cutting up squares of newspaper to use in our outside lavvy; these were strung together and hung up from a hook. Fortunately, we progressed in that area and I recall having a downstairs room converted and a bath (no more tin baths in front of the fire) and toilet installed. No soft toilet tissue in those days, we used a hard toilet paper that I believe came in a box (it was like greaseproof paper and you could also use it as tracing paper). Do you remember Izal and Bronco? I think you could still buy them up until a few years ago. You may already know that I have just returned home from a holiday in Tenerife. And I was very pleased to see that in the bathroom was a bidet. I am quite sure that many holidaymakers laugh at these and use them for washing their feet, but it is a very healthy and hygienic way of cleaning your bottom after defecation. Many countries around the world use water to clean themselves properly and they probably look at our habit of wiping ourselves with dry toilet paper only as extremely unhygienic. If you use solely dry toilet tissue, do you think that you manage to remove all the excrement? In order to try this little test you are going to have to purchase moist toilet tissue. So, after you have done your business, wipe yourself as thoroughly as you can with dry toilet tissue and then wipe your bottom a second time with a moist tissue. Take a look at the moist tissue you may be surprised to find you have removed even more residual faeces. I am sure that if you use dry toilet tissue only it cannot be healthy or hygienic to leave little bits and pieces of excrement stuck to the skin around your bottom, let alone bits of toilet paper that come adrift. And another point, moist toilet tissues are stronger, so you won’t put
              your fingers through them like you do with ordinary dry tissue and come away with brown stains on your fingers. (Sorry, hope nobody is eating whilst reading this, I wouldn’t want to put you off your food!). There are 40 moist toilet tissues and they are supplied in a white plastic pop-up tub. Each tissue is 14cm by 16cm in size and enriched with Aloe Vera. And in case anyone is not clear on how this product should be used there is a diagram of a toilet roll + the pop-up box on the packaging (meaning you use one first and then the other). The refill moist toilet tissues are supplied in a sealed pack. The packaging is blue in colour with a piccy of the Andrex puppy above the lettering. Currently if you buy the refill pack, this comes with an Andrex Puppy token (valid until 31.12.02) which can be used as part payment for items offered on the Andrex website which is www.andrexpuppy.co.uk. I haven’t had a look at this website, but have included details in case you wish too. So how did I find Andrex Moist Toilet Tissue? I have been using the moist toilet tissue in conjunction with the normal ‘dry’ toilet tissue for a couple of weeks now. They are mildly fragranced but certainly not overpowering and very pleasant. Although moist, they do not leave you feeling wet after use. They are certainly very effective and get rid of all excrement and leave that part of my anatomy feeling clean and fresh. Although my tub was a bargain at £1.89, I do feel they are slightly on the expensive side at £4 a tub. I am quite sure that if you used baby wipes on yourself these would be just as effective and they are usually cheaper in price. Also I did find that when you pull one tissue out to use, the next one pops through the hole in the tub (as it is designed to do). Well, this was fine, but after returning home from my holiday, I found that the top one had dried up. Even though I had put the flap d
              own, it had not stayed down. I therefore think that this tub needs to be re-designed. The quantity of tissues in the tub has gone down rapidly, so much so that I have had to buy a refill pack, but heaven knows what Victor, sorry again I mean husband, has been doing with them. Knowing him he may have been using them to clean his shoes! On a final word according to the packaging they are flushable and dermatologically tested. And I can certainly vouch for the fact that they are flushable; we haven’t needed to call out dyna-rod yet! I will close by giving you a list of the ingredients, but as this is very boring, please feel free to fast forward over this section: Aqua Propylene Glycol, Aloe, Barbadensis, Polysorbate20, Terasodium EDTA, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate and Sodium Laureth Sulphate, PPG-12-PEG-50 Lanolin, 2-Bromo-2-Nitropropane-1, 3-Diol, Parfum, Citric Acid, Benzyl Alcohol, Methylchloroisothiszolinone, Methylisothiazolinone. Janna , with a little help from Victor 10th May 2002 (with apologies to Mel, it was actually Kazz who recommended them!) ~Factfile~ ******** Kimberly-Clark Ltd. Customer Relations Department Freepost 1 Tower View Kings Hill West Malling Kent ME19 4HA Tel. 0800626 008 Rep. of Ireland: 1800 626 008

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                09.05.2002 00:41
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                Despite living in Norfolk for the past five years or so, I have flown overseas from many airports over the UK, but never previously from Norwich International Airport. Sounds rather grand doesn’t it? In actual fact, it is a very nice little airport, small but perfectly formed, please read on…. Also as I suggested this category to dooyoo.co.uk, I thought I had better put pen to paper. I had never flown from Norwich before due to heavy flight supplements. However, we recently obtained a good deal, a holiday flying from this airport to Tenerife for 14 days fun in the sun for a total price of £221 each at a self-catering complex. You may well be asking where is Norwich International Airport located? To reach the airport from Norwich and the south of England, take the A140 Cromer Road clearly signposted ‘Airport’ on the Norwich Ring Road. When you approach the airport from the Ring Road follow signs for ‘Airport Passengers’. We pre-booked our car parking with National Car Parks Limited (NCP). The procedure is simple; book your airport parking space online at www.ncp.co.uk or alternately phoning 0800 128 128 quoting your visa card number, vehicle registration and home address. We paid a total of £49.50 for 15 days car parking. If we had not pre-booked our car parking, it would have cost us £52.50. Within a couple of days we received Parking Confirmation together with instructions through the post. On arrival at the airport, take a ticket from the machine and park your vehicle in the ‘Short Stay Car Park’, which has spaces allocated for hire cars, pre-book car parking etc. After locking your vehicle, find a trolley for your luggage and cross the road to the Airport Terminal Building. This is situated immediately in front of the Car Park and to the rear is the Hilton Hotel. The Norwich Park and Ride is situated close by. It was easily the closest we have ever parked to
                an airport, no searching for luggage trolleys (there are ample), no long walks lugging heavy suitcases or hanging around for the courtesy bus to take you to the terminal building. Simple and easy…. Alternately if you travel to Norwich by train or coach, Norwich International Airport is a short taxi journey across the city. Norwich International Airport (I will call it NIA from now on) is owned jointly by Norwich City Council and Norfolk County Council. On entering the Terminal Building there are thirteen check-in desks. One is for gas rig workers travelling to the gas rigs by helicopter, the rest are for passengers travelling by KLM to Holland, Eastern Airways check-in desks and the remainder cater for holidaymakers travelling to destinations mostly around the Mediterranean. The airport Information Desk is centrally situated and is always manned. There are no direct long haul flights from NIA. A colleague who lives in Norfolk and who regularly travels to Australia flies from this airport via KLM to Amsterdam. Within a few minutes of arrival at this building, we were checking in at one of three check-in desks that were available for our flight. There were no queues and the staff were helpful and friendly. In this part of the building you will find Travel Norwich Airport Limited – a travel shop (telephone 01603 428700) offering the usual holiday brochures and featuring late deals from Norwich Airport. Currently the tour operators offering package holidays from this airport include Thomson, Airtours, JMC and First Choice. We sat down to drink tea in the cafeteria; plenty of tables and chairs which were regularly cleared of dirty crockery etc. The drinks and food were overpriced, but isn’t it so at all airports? There was a small seating area with comfortable chairs, plus a newsagents shop and a bar serving alcoholic beverages. There are also several car hire kiosks and
                a Thomas Cook Bureau de Change. We exchanged cash for Euros here and received a better rate of exchange here than we did anywhere in Tenerife. There is also a Customer Service desk for National Car Parks, and desks for JMC etc. Toilets were nice and clean. We proceeded to Passport Control. Due to the new security arrangements this all took longer than normal. After our passports were checked, my husband and I were asked to stand side by side and a photograph was taken. It is not now possible to take tweezers, scissors, corkscrews, pointed combs or any other sharp object in your hand luggage. Our hand luggage was x-rayed (and my nail clippers confiscated as an illegal weapon!). We then proceeded through a metal detector, which my husband managed to set off which resulted in his being searched. We proceeded to the departure lounge with ample comfortable chairs. There was a snack bar, a children’s play area, a computer room for internet/fax etc., a newspaper kiosk and a large duty free shop. Monitors display the usual information about destinations, flight numbers and boarding gates. When our flight was called. We handed our Boarding Cards to boarding staff, who entered the card into a machine and the photographs that were taken earlier were displayed on the screen. We proceeded through the Boarding Gate 50 yards across the tarmac to our waiting aircraft, which I was informed was an Air Europa Boeing 737/800 and off to Tenerife…. On our return 14 days later; after the short walk back across the tarmac we entered the building and proceeded to Passport Control and through to Baggage Reclaim where there was one carousel and plenty of trolleys again. I will certainly travel from NIA in the future. It was easy and hassle free compared to some of the major airports and we experienced no delays. We found it to be a clean, small but modern airport that is only 45 minutes by car from
                my home. I shall be checking Travel Norwich Airport Ltd for my next holiday – apart from Tenerife, flights from this Airport currently go to Gran Canaria, Malta, Croatia, Holland, Costa del Sol, Costa Blanca, Costa de la Luz, Corfu, Cyprus, Ibiza, Jersey, Menorca and Majorca, Portugal and Turkey… Now what takes my fancy……. Janna 8th May 2002 ~*Factfile*~ *********** Norwich International Airport www.norwichinternational.com Travel Norwich Airport Ltd Norwich Airport Norwich NR6 6JA Tel. 01603 428700 National Car Parks Limited Tel. 0800 128 128 www.ncp.co.uk

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                • L'Oréal Open Color / Hair Care / 1 Reading / 25 Ratings
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                  29.03.2002 04:13
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                  Although my natural hair colour is blonde, I have dyed it a number of different colours over the years (well, you sometimes get fed up with having the same hair colour, don’t you girls?) So, it has been black, red, and varying shades of brown and on one occasion bright orange!! However, as I am getting older, I am finding the odd grey hair – well, to be honest, quite a number of grey hairs. And as I am not yet ready to join the blue rinse brigade (heaven forbid) I decided I would try the latest hair colouring product from L’Oreal Paris called ‘Open Color’. There are lots of colours to choose from ~ blonde to brunette, varying shades of red to black with names such as Zenith, Osiris, Solstice, Oxygen, Equator, Earth Fire, Odyssey and Atlantis etc. L’Oreal is well known throughout the world for hair and skin care products. I have on occasion tried other hair colourants from L’Oreal and have not been entirely satisfied with the result. On one occasion when I used a blonde hair colourant, and followed the instructions to the letter, my resulting hair colour was a vivid brilliant orange!! Believing that the contents had been incorrectly boxed, I telephoned their Customer Advisory Service. They assured me that this couldn’t possibly happen (!?!?) and gave me some useful advice about getting rid of this ghastly bright orange – keep shampooing with an anti-dandruff shampoo. As I was by this time pretty desperate and my only other option was to wear a hat, I spent the whole of an afternoon washing my hair. But a bottle of anti-dandruff shampoo later, I was almost back to my natural hair colour. (L’Oreal’s Advisory Service also sent me a full refund plus some additional vouchers for their products) I think that it is worth keeping in mind that the colour on the box is a guide only to the end result, dependant on your natural hair colour. I chose Lunar, which is Light Blond
                  e from the selection that was on offer from my local chemist priced at £5.99. This is a permanent hair colour that does not wash out and is recommended for hair that is no more than 50% grey (just about applies to mine). The box contains: ***************  1 bottle of colourant  1 bottle of Developer Cream  1 bottle of After Colour Conditioner  1 pair of gloves  an instruction leaflet Before starting on the task ahead of me, I usually put on some old clothes as I have in the past spilt the colourant down the front of a brand new t-shirt (silly me for wearing it!). I put a large old towel around my shoulders and allowed myself plenty of time. If you have very long or very thick hair, it is recommended that you use two bottles of Open Color - £11.76 to colour your hair, but still less expensive than having it coloured professionally by your hairdresser. Preparing the mixture: ******************* 1. Put on the gloves provided 2. Pour the bottle of Colourant into the bottle of Developer Cream 3. Replace the Developer Cream cap and shake vigorously 4. Break off the tip of the Developer Cream; it is now ready for immediate use Skin Sensitivity Test: ***************** Clean a small area with surgical spirit behind the ear. Using a cotton wool bud apply a little of the bottle of Colourant. Re-apply a few more times allowing it to dry between each application. Reseal the bottle. Don’t wash behind your ears for 48 hours. If, in this time, it becomes itchy or reddens, do not apply the product to your hair. Instructions for use: ***************** 1. Wet your hair and towel dry. 2. Apply the mixture to your hair massaging like a shampoo. 3. Leave the product to develop for 30 minutes. 4. Rinse your hair ~ Pour warm water onto your hair and gently massage. Rinse hai
                  r thoroughly until the water runs clear. 5. Open the After Colour Conditioner massaging the product through your hair and leaving on for 2 minutes. 6. Rinse thoroughly with warm water. You can now dry and style your hair as usual. The leaflet also gives information which you would probably already know about including not using the product to colour eyelashes or brows; avoiding contact with eyes; rinsing eyes immediately if the product does come into contact with them. Do not use after bleaching or straightening your hair; or on hair that has been coloured with henna; and keeping out of the reach of children. The Open Color Horoscope ************************ Nothing to do during the 30 minutes that the product is on your hair? Then, I suggest you take a look at the L’Oreal Paris website (address in factfile) in order to learn about your future with a particular shade. For example: Earth Fire: Copper Chestnut ~ “Cool, calm and collected; you know how to make a statement without being brassy”. Aurora: Medium Red Brown ~ “You’re earthy and adventurous. Now it’s time to get a little edgy…. Behold it – then become it”. Lunar: Light Blonde (this is mine - you are on the edge of your seat now in anticipation, aren’t you?) ~ “You have an inner light that draws people to you. (You glow, girl). Let the light shine through with this luminous blonde. (Wow – this is where I’ve been going wrong all these years – I haven’t been using L’Oreal Open Color Lunar! Lol) So what do I think of the product~ **************************** The mixture is low in ammonia, so the smell is not overpowering. I particularly liked the conditioner which is enriched with Green Tea and Aloe Vera and I found this to be thick and creamy and it has left my hair feeling healthy and in n
                  ice condition. The only minor problem I found was that the gloves did not fit! Usually gloves provided in such kits are enormous, but despite only having average sized hands, I had difficulty in getting them on. And I could give you a list of the ingredients as listed on the box but I would need a magnifying glass to read it and you would need a science degree to understand it. I am very pleased with the end result; my grey bits are now blonde and I managed not to mess up my clothes or get streaks of colour all over the bathroom. So, yes I would recommend L’Oreal Paris Open Color. ~~ Factfile~~ L’Oreal Consumer Advisory Service, Freepost WD649, London, W68DR Tel. 0845 399 1939 www.lorealparis.com Janna 28th March

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                    17.03.2002 22:18
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                    The red fox has been important in Great Britain during the last 250 years owing to its popularity as a beast of the chase. It has been classed as vermin, a small, fierce animal preying on other animals. The fox is a skilful and ruthless night hunter, sleeping by day on a bed of bracken, pine needles or grass, or below ground in the original burrow of another animal. His cunning, speed, condition, and endurance can tax the physique and patience of his pursuers to the utmost. He is too fast to be coursed in sight, and is hunted by scent, which varies with temperature, climate and soil. Foxhunting has survived the introduction of railways, extensive use of barbed wire and two major wars. The sport has sustained a major change; at one time it was almost the privilege of the upper (and monied) classes, it is nowadays enjoyed by farmers, country folk and ordinary people. These people are as native to the country as the foxes that they hunt. The disciplined culling of foxes in the United Kingdom by highly organised, long standing and respected Hunts avoids the excessive suffering which may be employed by alternative methods e.g. trapping, shooting, snaring and gassing. I have mostly avoided reading opinions on this activity as most people who have never participated in the ‘sport’ have pre-conceived ideas due to all the media attention it has received in recent years. Personally I would prefer to call foxhunting an important job (not necessarily a sport) in the countryside, farmers pay the Hunt to keep fox numbers under control, so that they can keep their livestock losses down. Did you know that foxhunting is the oldest surviving horseback sport? It is not only carried out in England, but in Australia, Canada, France & many other countries around the world. ~Organisation of the Hunt~ I will give you a brief synopsis here mainly for those people (most of you I presume) on what hap
                    pens on arrival at a Meet. Permission to ride with the Hunt has to be obtained in advance from either the Secretary or the Master of the Hunt. Money is paid on the day, or a subscription allowing a person to hunt can be paid for the season. On arrival at the Meet, it is necessary to identify Hunt officers, whose instructions must be clearly obeyed during the day. The Master of the Hunt is in overall charge, assisted by a Field Master, who has the task of keeping in order the hunt followers. The Huntsman, in charge of the hounds, is assisted by Whippers-in, who chase up stragglers and keep the hounds under control. Hounds work by scent and once this has been discovered they take up the scent with the field following, taking care to keep well behind the Master and the pack. Inexperienced riders are encouraged to stay near the back of the field or pick a more experienced hunt member to follow. I have read one or two opinions where people have written about the adrenaline rush of horse riding in pursuit of a fox. Believe me, in most cases you do not see a fox – a healthy, young fox is extremely fast and can outwit the hounds and escape. It is mostly the old and sick foxes that are caught and killed by the hounds. The pleasure from foxhunting for me is derived from the horse riding – jumping over hedges and ditches, the excitement of galloping across fields; trying to keep a cool head and not get carried away with the excitement of the day; a chance to catch up with old friends and join in the general camaraderie of the day. ~So is it cruel?~ The fox has no natural predator in the wild. I think that most people will agree that the fox population needs to be controlled. I have a friend who owns a smallholding and keeps chickens and ducks. One evening, she forgot to lock the chickens in the henhouse. Next morning there were twenty or so dead chickens all with their heads bitten o
                    ff. None of the chickens had been eaten; the fox was only doing what was instinctive to him. Obviously she was very upset, the chickens were pets, many had names and she had kept them for a number of years. She blames herself for not securing her stock. Incidentally, the same person, a couple of years later found a wounded fox on her farm and nursed it back to health before returning it to the countryside. Farmers pay the Hunt to keep fox numbers under control. If a farmer loses his lambs to a fox, it is frustrating and upsetting, and it affects his livelihood. Have you ever seen a lamb lying in shreds in a field having been mauled and killed by a fox? The fox is only doing what is instinctive to him; no way would I ever think of a fox as being evil or sly or calling the fox vermin; it is my firm belief that where there is livestock, the fox population needs to be controlled. Did you know that when the hounds catch a fox, death occurs in SECONDS? Foxhounds account for the death of 18,000 foxes a year (incidentally gamekeepers shoot 150,000 foxes annually). Where foxes are not controlled they will kill the farmers lambs, chickens etc. If foxhunting is banned, farmers will still need to eliminate foxes from their land and will take on the task themselves. Inexpert shooting by farmers will cause the fox a wounding, painful and slow death; this WILL happen if hunting with dogs is banned. If hunting with dogs is perceived to be cruel, then so must fishing, shooting, ferreting and falconry be cruel. Foxhunting has been singled out due to its previously strong connections with the upper classes. Believe me, this is not the case nowadays – I come from very humble beginnings and one or two of those people I hunted with didn’t have two pennies to rub together! And don’t forget that if hunting with dogs is banned then this will also have a knock on effect on those people such as farriers, and staff in hunting
                    yards such as stable hands and grooms who rely on this work for their livelihood. Although the debate concerning foxhunting will continue to be discussed in both Houses of Parliament on Monday, 18th March, I believe that the way forward for this long established sport to carry on in England will be with the issuing of licenses. Each Hunt will apply for a license for 3 years and after that period will need to re-apply and providing there is still a need for foxes to be controlled in that particular area and that there have been no charges of cruelty laid against the Hunt, then the license could be re-issued. It has been suggested that drag hunting is an alternative. As a sport, drag hunting is good, but drag hunting doesn’t contribute in helping to control the fox population. Personally, I haven’t participated in foxhunting for around fifteen years, not that I have changed my opinion concerning the sport, but mostly because my horse isn’t suitable for participation in this activity (I wouldn’t trust him to behave himself!) Foxhunting is probably one of the most argued about topics of our time. So, dear dooyooers, just as the fox does with a newborn lamb, feel free to rip my opinion to shreds! Janna

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                    • pearlsoup.com / Internet Site / 0 Readings / 43 Ratings
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                      10.03.2002 17:45
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                      I write at one or two sites including Writtenbyme. However, due to it’s impending closure (it was supposed to close on 28th February, but it looks as though it will hang on until around 17th March) many of the writers on that site have had to look elsewhere for displaying their fiction, non-fiction and poetry writing. A couple of websites were recommended to me - Authors Den and Pearl Soup. I became a member of both of these sites, but as I have had problems navigating Authors Den (plus I have had problems finding any readers to rate my work!) I decided that I would give Pearl Soup a little taste. So what is Pearl Soup: ****************** This site is relatively new having been set up in November 2001, co-founded by Alex Ismail and is based in San Francisco, USA. It is a writing site whose aim is to actively collect and present true-life personal stories. It hopes to produce work of lasting value, creating a web community and exchanging everyday wisdom. Members are encouraged to read and experience important issues in the lives of other members, in order to enrich their own lives and make them wiser (hmmm!) Your writings/articles/reviews or opinions are known as ‘pearls’ and after you have become a member you can:  read pearls  write your own pearls  rate and write comments on pearls  join in the discussion forums  create your own Scrapbook and include the pearls you have enjoyed the most Writing your own pearls ********************* It is important to write about your own experiences; events that have happened in your life; your thoughts and feelings. It is not a fiction writing site, although they do accept poetry. Pearls should ideally be over 100 words. However, the site is not designed to publish pearls of over 7,700 characters in length. I tried to post my ‘Welsh Border Collie’ op
                      inion (which is around 7,500 characters) and it was too long! I am not too keen on trying to shorten opinions; I don’t particularly want to start cutting chunks out of an article that I am happy with as it is. So I gave up on this one! You can preview your pearl before it is published. You will not receive any payment for your writing. The site is designed for amateur authors who write purely for the enjoyment of writing and providing pleasure to others with their work. Categories ********* Categories are complicated and it is not always easy to find what you are looking for. ~ Main Categories~  Character Traits  Contexts  Feelings  Self-Skills  Transitions  Values  Other ~Sub Categories~  Friendship  Insight  Learning  Love (Family)  Parenting  Relationships  Spirituality  Wisdom If you decide you would like to write at this website, my advice would be to have a good look around the categories and you will find such subjects as pets, humour, politics, employment, death, marriage, books, movies, songs etc. hidden away in there somewhere. I am sure there is something for everyone here; it is just a case of finding it! If you have read any of my opinions here on dooyoo, you will know I am partial to travel writing. As there was no travel section on Pearl Soup, I left a message in the ‘Discussions Forum’ in ‘Questions, Suggestions and Feedback’ and within a few hours (yes, hours) ‘travel’ had appeared under the ‘Contexts’ category. I was obviously very impressed with the speed in which this appeared. Rating a pearl ************ After you have read a pearl, you can rate it as follows: 5 stars – Love it! Superb! <
                      br>4 stars – Very Good 3 stars – Worth Reading 2 stars – Needs Improvement 1 star - Didn’t Like It The individual ratings given by readers are not displayed. Only the average rating for that particular pearl is displayed. I originally thought that this would encourage members to vote fairly, there is no chance of reciprocal rating, as you do not know how each reader has rated your work. However, I have read many well written and interesting pearls that have only received an overall average rating of 3 or 4 stars, so I wonder if some readers are deliberately giving lower ratings. Community Support Points ************************ These points are designed to reflect your contributions to the community, and the value others place on your work. There are 4 levels of community status:  Philosopher  Thinker  Supporter  Visitor Obviously, you become a visitor when you initially register with the site. As your community support points increase, so you advance to higher levels. Members who contribute the most to the community achieve Philosopher status. I have just achieved Philosopher status even though I have only submitted four pearls (!?!?) Home Page ********** It has a professional appearance; simply set out and easy to understand and navigate. It is a sort of lilac and grey in colour. Categories are situated on the left-hand side. Other features/links (which are self-explanatory) include:  Featured author  Pearl of the Day  Active Pearl Commentaries  Active Discussions  Best Pearls of the Week  What’s New (for most recently submitted pearls)  The Best (for top rated authors) On the right-hand side of the home page are instructions for writing and submitting a pearl etc. <
                      br>There are links on the Home Page to Discussions, Members, Help, My Account and Sign Out. My Account *********** This gives me information about my status and rank and details of my community service points. This leads to my ‘Profile Page’ which allows me to write personal information about myself including my interests etc. I can make another writer a ‘favourite author’. It is possible to sort your own pearls by number of comments, date submitted, rating, times rated or they can be placed in alphabetical order by title. It is also possible to remove a pearl if you so desire, which could be a useful feature. Members Page ************ Basically provides a list of members which, if you are so inclined, can be sorted by:  Date joined  Member Name  Number of Pearls written  Real Name Conclusion ********** I have only recently joined this writing site. So it is difficult to be objective at the moment, but I hope to keep this opinion up-to-date if and when I write more pearls. At the moment on the plus side it is easy to navigate and joining was simple. Also I can submit as many pearls as I wish to under the same category heading – I am not restricted to one opinion per category as on dooyoo or Ciao. Dooyoo helps consumers make informed choices about products. Pearl Soup is for writers who want an audience for their work. Anyone who likes to write can join this site. As it is an American site, your work will be on view to a wider audience. However, it is still a relatively new writing site and at present there are not too many active writers. You should also keep in mind that its members are mostly American with a smattering of Brits and Aussies etc. I have come to the conclusion that the Americans do not share the same sense of humour (or is it humor?) as us.
                      I sometimes feel that they also speak a different language! Pearl Soup lacks the community spirit of other writing sites. There is no Guestbook (as on Ciao), so it is only possible to leave a message in the comments section of a pearl. If you decide to visit Pearl Soup and would like to read about my sister-in-law’s tribe of rescued cats or find out how I got bitten (and still bear the scars) by a piranha (true, would I lie to you?) check out www.pearlsoup.com and look me up. By the way, I have developed a stutter. I am jjanna on Pearl Soup. See you there, Janna

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                      • friendsreunited.co.uk / Internet Site / 0 Readings / 50 Ratings
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                        05.02.2002 21:11
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                        No, not another opinion on Friends Reunited I hear you say, we have over 70 opinions on this subject already, so do the readers of dooyoo.co.uk really need another? To be completely honest I have always been half-hearted about this site, I am not the sort of person to get enthusiastic about getting in touch with old school friends or attending school reunions (heaven forbid!). And I wouldn’t have considered writing an opinion if it hadn’t been for something that has happened to me recently. Anyway, as I’m here now and writing an opinion on the subject I’d better tell you something about Friends Reunited. I first heard of Friends Reunited when it was recommended on femail.co.uk (or Charlotte Street, as it was known in times gone past). And if you have not heard of Friends Reunited when it has been mentioned in the newspapers and on the television then what planet have you come from? The purpose of this website is to reunite old school friends. They now have nearly 4 million members and hundreds and thousands of people have been reunited. The database lists over 40,000 Secondary and Primary Schools, Colleges and Universities in the United Kingdom and all this is organised from a spare bedroom in Barnet, North London. Apparently a Work Friends section is planned for the future that will allow members to contact former work colleagues. However, if you are looking for a long lost relative or friend you could try entering their details in the ‘looking to find’ section. And a television game show of Friends Reunited may also be in the pipeline. So watch out Anne Robinson and Chris Tarrant! As I said I registered some while ago, certainly before the introduction of the £5 annual fee that would have enabled me to become a full member. I haven’t forked out any cash, so I am considered to be a ‘standard’ member; the difference being that I cannot email o
                        ther members of the site, which suits me fine (they have to pay their fivers and email me first). When I joined my secondary school was not listed, due to the fact that it had closed in 1985. I registered the school and became the first former pupil to be mentioned. Within a couple of days, it could be found on the screen and gradually a total of 45 former pupils have registered their details, but no one else from my year! I do actually keep in contact with one former school friend, who lives in Warwickshire, but is moving to my neck of the woods this year. Although to be honest, most of our communications are done at Christmas time and memories are recalled in an exchange of yearly Christmas cards. So all you have to do is find your school and add your maiden name and date of leaving. You can if you wish write brief details about what you have been doing since leaving school. For instance you may be a Brain Surgeon, married with 4 children and enjoy keeping hamsters, skydiving and doing cross-stitch. I did wonder if anyone would remember me from my Secondary School. I wasn’t very good at any subjects and only played a passable game of hockey. I probably blended into the background quite nicely, which in view of my experiences at my Primary School suited me quite nicely. The Memory Boards were suspended for a few weeks in December as people were including 'false' memories which included a series of schools in England that Bin Laden had attended (according to Have I Got News For You – so it must be true, mustn’t it?). Also people had been leaving hurtful comments about former teachers (ahh poor things). I particularly liked the School Memory Board; so will treat you to some extracts that amused/touched a chord with me: “You could count on someone weeing during assembly time”. (She must have been talking about a primary school, surely?) “We nailed a
                        rotten kipper under her desk and she took 2 hours to find it, by then we were all feeling sick”. “Whilst flexing his cane in assembly one morning, he pressed a little too hard and the thing snapped in his hand. One half damn near took his eye out and showed he was only human after all” “Every break time we used to throw wet soggy tissues at the ceiling until all you could see was a white paper mache effect covering the whole area, great days!!” “I remember growing mustard and cress in empty eggshells stuffed with damp cotton wool and then bringing in bread and butter to eat it on when it has grown”. “Can you remember the pickled piglet with 2 heads and 6 legs in the Science Room?” “I was suspended for having a friendly snowball fight! Can you believe that…. Mind you, it was in the library!” And my favourite for the most inventive: “Just before we all left, we advertised the school for sale in the Evening Echo. People thought the ad was real and tried to come and view the ‘mansion with panoramic views of the sea’……” I almost breathed a sigh of relief; it is just as well no former pupils from my year have registered, as there might have been memories on this Board concerning a certain holiday that as sixth formers we organised in Blackpool. You wouldn’t believe what wild times a load of unchaperoned young Convent School girls could get up to when let out on their own. Believe me, the town didn’t know what had hit it. Oh, to be young, free and single again… And if you would like to know what schools the likes of Jonathan Ross, Brian Clough, Eddie Izzard, Janet Street Porter, Alan Titchmarsh, Denise Van Outen and Adam Woodyatt (who is now involved in running a chip shop in Albert Square) attended in their youth; you can look on the Famous Pupil Boards. <
                        br>My Primary school was already listed on the site and I did wonder at this point whether to include my name. You may have read my opinion “My Story” in the “bullying in school” category (and, if you haven’t I will tell you about it anyway). I was 9 or 10 years old and I was so badly bullied that I ran away from home. To briefly recap, my family had moved from Liverpool to Cambridge and I was bullied because of my background, my accent and an unusual surname. The girl who bullied me, I will call her Barbara because that is her name, picked on me incessantly. It culminated in a fight in the school playground when she dragged me around by my hair and beat me with her fists. Although I still remember it in vivid detail, I hasten to add that this occurred nearly 40 years ago. I added my name to the list of former pupils. Again there was no one from my year and all this happened a long time ago and I am not one to bear a grudge, or am I? By now, you have probably realised where this opinion is going. Imagine my utter astonishment when about two weeks ago, I received an email - yes, you’ve guessed from Barbara the Bully! I immediately checked and she is not listed under the name of my primary school. Another useful facility is the ‘name search’ and low and behold it brought up Barbara’s details and a secondary school she attended in Lincolnshire. We have exchanged a couple of brief emails. Apparently her family moved home and she finished her schooling in that county. She did say that she did not make many friends at her new school (well, am I surprised?). She married at a young age and has two boys. She now works as a Hotel Receptionist. And in these emails, I might have thought that one little word ‘sorry’ could have been included, but no. She must remember what she put me through. If not, why has she contacted me? And then today, I
                        received the latest email in which she suggests, as we do not live too far from each other, that we should meet for coffee. Is this woman serious? I have given this some thought. To be honest, the bullying all happened a long long time ago and it was only for a short period in my life. Looking back over the years, there have been worse things that have happened to me. I wrote in my ‘bullying in schools’ opinion that I bear her no ill will and I wished her well in life and I meant it. But I really cannot see the point in meeting someone I am probably not going to keep in regular contact with and with whom I have little in common. So the big question is – Do I meet the bully? janna 5th February

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                          07.01.2002 20:36
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                          ..... absolutely nothing to do with horses. Although the Big Fellow has threatened that if I do not let him write an opinion on dooyoo soon, he will stand on my foot with his hoof. And if you have ever been stood on by an English Shire horse you will know that you will be limping for days if not weeks.... Anyway back to the point, don't waffle on woman, as Husband would say.... back to the purpose of this opinion The Hungry Horse restaurant at the Henry IV public house at Fakenham in Norfolk. Husband and I eat out two or three times a week. Not that we are rich by any means; by 'eating out' I often mean a lunchtime snack at Safeway's restaurant whilst doing our weekly shop. We have also been eating at the Hungry Horse on and off for the past couple of years. However, we have not eaten there for some time, as we had not been entirely satisfied with our meals as of late. But we decided, well why not, we would give it one more go.... What to do ********** 1. Find yourself a table - the restaurant is divided into smoking and non-smoking areas. 2. Make a note of your table number 3. Choose your food from the menu and order at the till 4. Help yourself to cutlery, serviettes and sauces When you order your meal you can either pay in cash, by cheque supported by a bankers card or by credit card. They accept Visa, Switch, Mastercard, Diners Club and American Express. We usually set up a tab ordering drinks at the bar and signing the tariff at the end of the meal. What to eat *********** All the steak dishes are big plate specials - served on a 17" platter e.g. 10oz Steak Diane is £6.99, 20oz prime Rump Steak is £9.99, 10oz Sirloin Steak with Ruddles Ale gravy is £7.99. Various other steak dishes are available. Chicken New Yorker, an old favourite consists of chicken breasts topped with bacon and melted cheese for £6.49. Mighty
                          Moby comprises salmon and potato chunks seasoned with dill for £5.99. Surf and Turf consists of scampi tails with a 10oz rump steak grilled to your liking for £7.99. All the above, plus other dishes including Chicken and Ham Pie, Cheeseburgers, Mixed Grill, Lamb Joint etc. are served with chips, peas and sweetcorn. An All Day Breakfast consists of 2 fried eggs, rashers of bacon, sausages, a burger, grilled tomatoes and mushrooms, baked beans and a bread roll costs £4.99. Vegetarians are catered for with Cauliflower Please which consists of cauliflower, spinach, tomatoes in a cheese sauce topped with breadcrumbs for £5.99 and Vegetable Chow Mein consisting of Chinese vegetables cooked in a black bean sauce and served on a bed of noodles with a crispy vegetable spring roll for £5.99. Plus if you want to try the hottest chilli in the world (their words!) served in a flour tortilla with Habanero sauce the 'mouth-watering' new meal can be purchased for £4.99. Puds include a Knickerbocker Glory for £2.99, Horse Choux Bombe for £2.49 or two can share a Choc-a-lot Challenge which contains chocolate mousse, mini donuts, chocolate sauce and whipped cream, chocolate and vanilla ice cream, marshmallows and Cadbury's chocolate flakes for £3.49 plus many more hot and cold desserts. If you visit on a sunday, roast beef with the trimmings can be purchased for £5.99, roast chicken for £5.49 or roast lamb for £6.99. A smaller version for children can be bought for £2.99. On a monday and a tuesday (excluding Bank Holidays) certain meals can be purchased at a lower price including: Chicken Tikka Masala £4.99 (normally £5.99) Roast Half Chicken £3.99 (normally £4.99) Chicken in a bun £3.99 (normally £4.99) Cannelloni £4.99 (normally £5.99) Bakewell Sponge £3.49 (normally £3.99) etc etc. Children are catered for with a 'Pony Club Kids Menu' giving great kids
                          meals at good prices including burgers, chicken nuggets, grilled chicken, fish fingers etc. You can finish off your meal with a Calypso Coffee; a Caribbean special with Tia Maria and topped with whipped cream for £2.29. Various other speciality coffees are available. So now your taste buds are tingling.... I am sitting at a table in the Hungry Horse and scribbling notes whilst fellow diners give me strange looks.... A child is screaming on a nearby table.... A mobile phone rings somewhere behind me.... Televisions are strategically placed around the dining area, oh dear, Aston Villa are playing Man United, someone scores, a cry goes out "He let that effing ball go through his legs!". Whilst sipping a glass of white wine (well, a half litre of Liebfraumilch to be precise for £3.99) you may be asking what do I really think of this restaurant? If you eat, as we do, in an evening, the restaurant is dimly lit. The decor consists of posters, advertising signs and old black and white photographs on the walls and from the ceiling hang copper kettles, warming pans, saucepans, wooden crates, teddy bears, puppets etc. etc. I look up and there is a large milk churn suspended above my head, I sincerely hope it is securely fastened to the ceiling.... On our previous visit I ordered a steak cooked to my liking which is medium. What I received was a steak with the blood running out of it.... turning my chips pink; the cream, brandy and mushroom sauce congealing into a lumpy and soggy mess.... It was enough to turn anyone vegetarian! This time, we tried steaks again (brave aren't I, or is it foolhardy?); this time they were perfect, exactly what we had ordered. I ordered a Hot and Cold Sundae, which was a chocolate and cherry baa baa, filled with black cherries and vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce placed in fine lines all over a large white dish for £2.49 (someone's been watching Ainsley
                          Harriot). Delicious.... Husband ordered Cherry Pie with ice cream also for £2.49. Unfortunately the pastry was so hard that a mallet might have been appropriate for breaking it. The Hungry Horse is staffed by young waiters and bar staff. They have obviously been trained to ask "Everything all right with your meal sir/madam?". I am quite sure that if our response had been "No, if this steak was any rarer, the cow would still be alive!" their reply would still be the same as it always is "Sorry, about that sir/madam" and they walk away. I am not tall by any means (5ft 4ins to be precise) but if you need to visit the Ladies in this particular establishment for the purpose of combing your hair or applying your makeup, you will need to kneel on the floor to be eye level with the mirrors.... If after reading this opinion you STILL want to visit the Hungry Horse at Fakenham in north Norfolk, the address is: The Henry IV Greenway Lane Fakenham Norfolk NR21 8ES Tel. 01328 864592 The Hungry Horse is a chain of restaurants mostly located in East Anglia and south-east England, although there are a few eateries in the Manchester, Birmingham and Swansea areas. If, you wish to locate a Hungry Horse in your area visit www.hungryhorse.co.uk If you do nothing else, please take a look at this brilliant website and get a taste of "The Hunt for Cow Pie" to the music from "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly". Howdy folks Janna PS. There are a number of Hungry Horse restaurants in Norfolk, I will email dooyoo and ask them to change the address at the top of this category.

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                            31.12.2001 02:20
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                            If you have read any of my other opinions, I may already have mentioned from time to time that I am a jewellery designer by profession; work I have been doing for the last fourteen years. Therefore, I have decided that I would write an article in this category concerning some of the birthstones that I use for jewellery making and some alternatives to the more costly stones. Many years ago I was asked by a potential customer if I could make her a pair of ivory earrings; but could I please ensure that the elephant had died of natural causes (!!) Although, at that time it was still possible to obtain ivory, I declined. Nowadays, I am glad to say that ivory is not legally available from any recognised sources. In my line of business I have been asked many unusual and interesting questions. The one that is asked more frequently than others is "what is the birthstone for November or March or August etc.?" So you may now be asking - what is a Birthstone? ************************************* A birthstone is a gemstone designated by custom, religious tradition and superstition as being related to the month of your birth. Pagan legends mingled with Christian and Jewish traditions, led to the association of certain stones with different months. This list of birthstones is recognised throughout the United Kingdom. January - Garnet ................ Garnet is really a family of minerals. Pyrope garnet is the most common and its blood red colour made it popular in Victorian jewellery. Almandine garnet is paler and the presence of iron gives it a brown or purple tinge. Rhodolite is a mixture of pyrope and almandine and has an attractive violet-pink colour. Garnets were used by the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans and Celts, often cut into thin slices and inlaid, as in cloisonne. When garnets were mounted in Anglo-Saxon and Victorian jewellery, they were usually backed with gold or silver foil. Nowadays,
                            garnets are imported from China, Brazil, Mozambique and India. February - Amethyst ................... Amethyst is a variety of quartz, which is transparent and crystalline, usually deep purple to pale bluish-violet. The hues are sometimes mingled in the same stone, owing to irregular colour zoning, and some show patches of yellow. Only the clearest stones are faceted; the poorer quality, sometimes containing white milky quartz, are used for cabochons and carvings. Siberian amethyst is reddish-mauve in colour; Uruguayan stones are reddish-violet and Mexican stones are grey-mauve in colour. Brazil produces high-class dark amethyst. According to mythology the wearing of amethyst inspires fairness and a sense of duty. March - Aquamarine .................. Aquamarine is a variety of beryl that is transparent and of various shades of blue and blue green. In chemical composition aquamarine is identical to the emerald, but the stones are paler in colour and, being less rare, are much less valuable. Beware of low cost, large, clear stones - they are probably glass or synthetic imitations. Brazil has produced the finest and some very large specimens. Aquamarine is also found in Zimbabwe and Tanzania. The name aquamarine is derived from seawater. Wear aquamarine to encourage a spirit of hope and a promise of better things to come. The alternate birthstone for this month is bloodstone; a variety of chalcedony that is green speckled with red spots resembling blood. In the Middle Ages it was used as a stone for a seal and as an amulet to prevent loss of blood. April - Diamond ............... A precious stone that is pure native crystallized carbon, highly valued, especially free from flaws and cut into various forms with differently shaped facets of variable numbers and positions, and consequently showing brilliant colours. It is the hardest natural substance known to man and
                            can be cut or faceted with another diamond (or diamond powder). It is mostly colourless, but some diamonds have various colours in pastel shades. The principal source was originally India and then Brazil, but now it is South Africa and other African countries, as well as Siberia and Venezuela. The word 'diamond' comes from the Greek and means indomitable. It is thought to protect the wearer from evil and ill health. Diamond is also the traditional gift for a 60th wedding anniversary. If you are looking for something much less expensive, the alternate birthstone is crystal quartz. The name 'crystal' comes from a Greek word for ice, owing to the clear, glass-like, appearance of this common quartz. May - Emerald ............. Emerald is a variety of beryl, and one of the rarest and most valuable of precious stones. It is green, ranging from pale to dark, the most valuable being very dark velvety green; the colour is derived from the presence of traces of chromium. Flawless stones are very rare and most specimens contain inclusions. Emeralds were polished and drilled as beads in antiquity and were found in Columbia and in Egypt. Other important sources have been India, Russia, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Brazil. The emerald is dedicated to Venus: the Goddess of Love and is said to protect seafarers from drowning. Emerald is also the traditional gift for the 55th wedding anniversary. The alternate stone is chrysoprase, which is a variety of chalcedony that is apple green in colour due to the presence of nickel. June - Pearl ............ The pearl is a dense, lustrous concretion, formed within the shell of certain molluscs; it is used as a gemstone and classified with precious stones. The finest pearls are produced by the pearl oyster. The pearl is deposited naturally as nacre in very many thin layers to surround a foreign particle (often a grain of sand)
                            making a true or wild pearl. If man carries out the insertion, it is called a cultured pearl. The sizes vary, as well as shape - from spherical, to oval or egg shaped, and those that are irregularly shaped. The colours also vary, usually depending on the water where produced, from pink to various pale tints and blackish. Some are also artificially coloured by staining. Pearls were traditionally emblems of nobility and thought by some to ensure a faithful lover when worn next to the heart. The traditional gift for a 30th wedding anniversary is pearl. Moonstone is the alternate birthstone for the month of June; a silicate containing aluminium and potassium. The stone has a milky sheen, the best stones are bluish in colour. July - Ruby ........... The ruby is a precious stone that is a red variety of transparent corundum. The colour ranges from pink to deep red. Flawless specimens showing the most desirable colours are rare; the varieties of shades are due to the presence of a small quantity of oxide of chromium. The principal sources for deep-red rubies are Burma, Sri Lanka for light red and Thailand for dark brownish-red. Tanzania also produces a lovely deep red ruby. The best rubies are more costly than diamonds of the same size, and are exceeded in value only by the emerald. In the 13th Century this was thought, by the King of Siam, to prolong youth. Apparently he died in his 90's with the unwrinkled complexion of a young man. (Perhaps I should be wearing a ruby!) Ruby is the traditional gift for a 40th wedding anniversary. An alternate birthstone is carnelian, which is beautiful translucent quartz of a red or orange colour. August - Peridot ................ A gem variety of olivine that is golden-green, but also shades ranging from dark leek-green to yellowish-green. The stones are usually faceted, but some are polished by tumbling or mounted in their
                            natural rough form. Peridot isn't new though, having been discovered in jewellery that was nearly 3,500 years old! It is produced mostly in Pakistan nowadays. Peridot is thought to cure mental and physical timidity and strengthen the nerves. Peridot is my birthstone and unfortunately not a stone I particularly like. The alternative stones for this month are sardonyx and jade and I am not too keen on these either. If I had just been born a couple of days later, my birthstone would have been sapphire! Oh well, such is life. September - Sapphire .................... A precious stone that is a variety of transparent corundum of any colour other than red. The usual and preferable colour ranges from pale cornflower blue to deep velvety blue; but less valuable varieties of corundum of other colours are included as sapphires, e.g. white, yellow, green, pink, purple, brown and black. A sapphire that is not blue is sometimes called a 'fancy sapphire'. Some sapphires when viewed in daylight will change to a different hue as opposed to artificial light. Zones of different colour are sometimes present in the stone and the quality of cut stones depends greatly on skilful cutting; faceting is done mainly in Sri Lanka. The finest stones come from India and have a rich blue colour. Burma and Sri Lanka also produce fine sapphires. Sapphire is said to represent the purity of the soul and mirrors the blue of heaven. It is thought to protect its owner from captivity. The traditional gift for a 45th wedding anniversary is sapphire. Lapis Lazuli is the alternate birthstone for the month of September. It is a gemstone that is typically deep blue in colour, but sometimes with mottlings of white. It is a complex mineral sometimes spangled with inclusions of brassy-coloured pyrites. Lapis has been used in jewellery design since ancient times. It is mined in the remote mountains of Afghanistan and mo
                            nies from the sale of this stone are said to have helped to fund the former rebels in their fight against the Taliban government. (Seems as though I have been helping to finance the Northern Alliance for the past 14 years!). It was originally found in Afghanistan 6,000 years ago. It is also found in Chile and in lesser quantities elsewhere. October - Opal .............. A gemstone that is usually characterised by a flashing mixture of colours of delicate hues when light falls on the surface. There are actually two principal varieties of opals: 1. Precious opal that is iridescent 2. Common opal that has a milky white appearance. There are also many sub-varieties. Opals are cut into cabochons, faceted, carved or engraved. Nowadays most opals are imported from Australia, the principal source. There has long been a superstition that opals are unlucky. If you give an opal as a gift, this is not said to be unlucky. If you buy an opal and wear it yourself, this is said to be unlucky. So, if you are superstitious and you are thinking of purchasing an opal ring, perhaps you should consider persuading your husband/partner/etc. to buy it for you as a gift! Opals are inclined to crack fairly easily. And don't I know it. I recently spent some time (and considerable expense) finding an opal of an exact hue to match two other opals. When I was setting the stone in the ring, even with careful handling, it cracked! So now I am back to square one (so you could say that it was unlucky for me!) Opals are also thought to protect against poisoned food and to promote a good memory. Tourmaline is the alternate birthstone for this month. This is a complex silicate containing aluminium and boron. Colours range from pink through yellow, greens and blue. November - Topaz ................ Topaz is a gemstone that is generally yellow, ranging from canary-yellow to orange-yello
                            w, but sometimes is colourless or of a wide range of other hues, including pale blue, pale green, pink, golden-brown and mid-brown. It is imported mostly from Brazil. Derived from Sanskrit meaning fire, it is thought to ward off epilepsy and asthma and to cure insomnia. Citrine is the alternate birthstone. Like amethyst, this is a form of crystalline quartz of an attractive yellow colour. 'Sherry' or 'brandy' citrine is a deep yellow-orange. December - Turquoise .................... A gemstone that is bluish, greenish-blue or greyish-green, but the best quality is uniformly sky-blue; some less value specimens have dark markings from the surrounding matrix. Turquoise is cut into cabochons and occasionally faceted. Turquoise was very popular with the American Indians and is often used to decorate silver jewellery in Mexico, Tibet and Iran. Turquoise is porous and can discolour. Some deeply coloured stones will become pale when exposed to sunlight and will therefore lose value. The main sources for turquoise are the Sinai Peninsula and Iran. Prized in Mexico and Egypt as long ago as 3500 BC; it is said to guarantee the fidelity of those in love. (At this point I could make a comment about previous partners, but I will leave it to your imagination) Hope you have enjoyed this, Janna 30th December Happy New Year

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                              24.12.2001 21:02
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                              I am disorganised. I have always been disorganised; in fact I have muddled through life being totally disorganised and unprepared; that is me, the way I am. Holidays and packing have always been last minute. I get to the airport with minutes rather than hours to spare. Even though I try my hardest, I am continually late for appointments. So why should Christmas be any different? You would never think that I was born under the sign of Virgo, I thought that people born under this star sign were supposed to be well prepared and meticulous, with everything in its place and a place for everything. We have been fortunate in that we have spent the last few Christmases abroad, so apart from buying cards and presents for family and friends (and a pressie for my horse, of course), I have not needed to do a big Christmas food shop. So, it is Christmas Eve and I have just come back from doing my food shopping at The Battlefield, also known as Safeway; just to buy a few last minute items such as the turkey, potatoes, sausage-meat, brussel sprouts etc. I should have been forewarned when I pulled in to Safeway's Car Park. Despite its massive size, we were queuing to park and the Filling Station was chocker-blocked with cars filling up with fuel! (Do they think it is going to be closed all week?) When I tell you I already have a turkey; you may be asking why is she buying another? Just before last Christmas my husband, who participates in clay pigeon shooting, won a turkey at a turkey shoot. No, no, no they don't shoot the turkeys. It is definately clay targets and frozen turkeys were given to the winners of the event. So, he came home full of himself for having won a turkey. I found out much later that he hadn't won it at all, but had helped with scoring etc. and as the Organiser had one turkey left over; it had been given to my husband. As we were going abroad last Christmas, I put the frozen turkey in the bottom of my deep fre
                              eze and promptly forgot about it. Until a few weeks ago that is. So now I am wondering is the frozen turkey, which has been in the freezer for one year, going to be edible when thawed out and cooked? Or, ought I to bin it? I have now thawed it out and it looks and smells alright. But will it be as tough as old boots? So hence my trip to Safeway in order to buy a second turkey. It is absolutely jam-packed with people doing their last minute shopping. It is a good job I wore sensible boots, instead of my normal high heels, as I have been trodden on, had trolleys pushed into me, been barged out of the way etc.; not to mention the fact that I narrowly missed running a small boy over with my own trolley. Quite a lot of the perishable items have been reduced in price including the turkeys, although there were only a few left. What I witnessed was two women, who were of an age where they should have known better, almost coming to fisticuffs over a turkey! "I got it first" "No, you didn't I just put it down for a few seconds, it is mine". I might have been able to understand it if the turkeys had been drastically reduced in price, but they were not. I gave up and chose a joint of beef instead. Having purchased the last bag of potatoes and bought my other bits and pieces, including a good supply of booze, I proceeded to the checkouts. All the checkouts were in action with long queues at each. At last it was my turn and I emptied my trolley. Would you believe it, I had managed to pick the only pack of pork pies without a reduced label on it! A member of staff is sent to check on the price. All my other items are packed away in bags. And I am still waiting for my pork pies. There is now a queue of eight or more people with trolleys behind me all glaring at me for keeping them waiting. Why does it happen to me? After waiting what seems like an age, I give up; I tell the checkout assistant that I will leave
                              the pork pies. So my advice to dooyoo readers for hassle-free Christmas shopping is NOT to do your food shopping as I do, but to: 1. Make a list of what you need and try to stick to it 2. Check any food in your freezer that you intend to cook for the 'use by' date 3. Do your food shopping before Christmas Eve (or be prepared for little old ladies fighting over turkeys!) 4. Don't take your husband/children with you as he/they may put in the trolley lots of 'little' extras that simply MUST be purchased. 5. Fill up with petrol before Christmas Eve or be prepared to queue for long periods. I conclude by wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and prosperous New Year. Whilst you are all opening your pressies on Christmas morning and my husband is cooking the turkey (or the beef!) I shall be enjoying a Christmas morning ride, galloping across the sands on a beach in North Norfolk on my horse. Janna 24th December

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                                23.12.2001 23:02
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                                Husband says I have no taste in music. Keep in mind that His only claim to musical fame was when he was asked to sing with a country and western group in the 70's. He declined - the group did not become famous - so he did not miss out on fame or fortune! His tastes in music have changed somewhat - nowadays he enjoys listening to Eric Clapton, Elton John, Chris Rea, Simply Red, Mark Knopfler, Annie Lennox, Lighthouse Family etc. So I am writing my very first music review on another of his favourite singers - black American folksinger/songwriter Tracy Chapman. But beware my next musical review could be on music that I listen too - so be prepared for Ricky Martin, The Beautiful South, Des O'Connor..... So, as I sit at my computer on a crisp December morning looking out of the window at the snow that lies on the ground, I am listening to the warm, passionate and heartfelt songs of Tracy Chapman. Tracy was born in Cleveland, Ohio and raised by her mother. The family was very poor; her mother and sister bought Tracy her first guitar when she was 8 years old when she began to write stories and poetry. She achieved an academic scholarship and was sent to high school in Connecticut where she played in chapel services; a collection was made to purchase a new guitar for her. She went on to study anthropology at University in Massachusetts and joined the Boston folk music club, where she played her guitar and sang on the streets and in local coffeehouses. She grew up listening to soul music and was influenced by songs with a social message. Her favourites included Bobby Womack, Stevie Wonder, Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes and Marvin Gaye. Her debut album called 'Tracy Chapman' was released in early 1988 and announced the arrival of an extremely talented and highly original singer/songwriter. Her songs are simple and sincere - a black child growing up in poverty in a working class environment. The a
                                lbum met with commercial success. In June of that year she was asked to perform at a concert at Wembley, London in honour of the 70th birthday of Nelson Mandela. They did not have a slot for her; they would fit her in in-between more famous performers. Stevie Wonder was due to perform in a prime time slot, but could not go on stage because his computerised programmes had gone missing and he could not appear without them. At very short notice, the Organisers asked Tracy to perform and she literally ran on stage with her acoustic guitar, with no time for last minute nerves. Her performance brought her to the attention of a worldwide audience seen by millions on television around the world. Nelson Mandela is reportedly to have called her "a breath of fresh air..." The following week her album soared to the top of the charts in Great Britain and the United States. A debut album of basically acoustic songs went on to sell over 10 million copies and win three Grammy awards. Her second album 'Crossroads' was released towards the end of 1989. She was now widely respected as a committed singer/songwriter dealing with issues such as violence against women, the American civil rights movement, racism, poverty and the welfare state. Tracy wrote the song 'Freedom Now' featured on 'Crossroads' for Nelson Mandela. She played a 6-week Amnesty International Human Rights tour with Peter Gabriel, Sting, Bruce Springsteen and others. She has also supported many other fund-raising activities for worthy causes; although she sees herself as a musician and songwriter rather than a political activist. 'Matters of the Heart' her third album was released in May 1992. In the three years between her second and third albums she had been busy with a further Nelson Mandela concert in New York, and an appearance at a Martin Luther King celebration. This album includes many of the musicians she had perfo
                                rmed with on the Amnesty International Human Rights tour. Her fourth album 'New Beginning' was released at the end of 1995. It was a commercial success selling three million copies in America alone within a year. It is a mature collection of songs with deep emotions. The theme of this album is change, growth and renewal. Approaching a new century Tracy has hope that new solutions can be found to the old problems of the previous century. So the songs are full of optimism for the future of mankind and it's problems. After more than four years her fifth album 'Telling Stories' was released in early 2000. In the intervening years she had been busy playing at Tibetan Freedom concerts, performed in a Bob Marley tribute concert in Jamaica, and had participated in a benefit concert for the Special Olympics at the White House. According to Tracy, the songs included in 'Telling Stories' "touch on different perceptions of reality - how we define, change, manipulate and corrupt it". Fast Car ........ This song was her first hit single and is probably her best known. It is a powerful and moving song: it tells of striving to move out of poverty, hoping for a better future with nothing to lose, nothing to prove, saving money to get away and find better jobs; needing a fast car to fly away. It is a song about the difficulties of breaking the cycle of poverty and deprivation. Baby can I hold you ................... More recently recorded by Boyzone; this is a beautiful love song written by Tracy when she was only 18 years old. Talkin' Bout a Revolution ......................... This was the opening track of her first album and introduced her as a songwriter with a passionate commitment to the causes of justice and truth who would speak her mind as a champion for the rights of people ensnared in the poverty trap. "Poor people gonna rise up and g
                                et their share" she sings with conviction. She's got her ticket .................... This song has a similar theme to 'Fast Car' with an attractive reggae beat but is full of optimism for the future; a wish that "hatred, corruption and greed" can be overcome. Crossroads .......... The title track on her second album is a personal song dealing with maintaining belief in herself and not compromising her beliefs for anyone; having the courage to stand firm in your own convictions. Bang Bang Bang .............. This song tells the story of giving a boy a gun "bang bang bang: shoot him down"; a powerful song about the social hypocrisy concerning gun violence in the USA. There are many, many songs by Tracy Chapman that I have enjoyed listening too. I am not going to write about any others, I am going to leave it to you, the reader, to listen and enjoy the songs of Tracy Chapman. I am converted. I am a fan. In my opinion she is a fine contemporary songwriter, with striking originality who sings with compassion and honesty in a beautiful and distinctive voice. ~ Factfile~ Tracy Chapman - Tracy Chapman Tracy Chapman - Telling Stories Tracy Chapman - Collection Available at £8.99 each (free postage) from www.cd-wow.com Merry Christmas Janna 23rd December PS I am not really a Des O'Connor fan.........

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                                • Border Collie / Pet / Animal / 1 Reading / 32 Ratings
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                                  08.12.2001 07:32
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                                  My stepfather kept Border Collies. When one died, after a suitable period another Border Collie would be purchased. The dogs were always called Laddie and the bitches were called Lassie. So when Laddie the ninth died at the age of 12 my mother decided that they would not have another dog. My stepfather was in his late 60's and too frail for all the exercise that a Border Collie would need. But he desperately missed having a dog, so she eventually relented and decided that they would look for another. My mother spotted an advertisement in the local paper - a 2-year-old Border Collie bitch needed a good home - so they decided to take a look at her. I had suggested that a small dog, like a Cairn or a West Highland White terrier might be more suitable, but to no avail. Lassie (yes, she was already called Lassie) was a working sheepdog. Her owner, a farmer, had died and his son was selling the farm and needed to find a home for the dog. So Lassie, not surprisingly, came home with my mother and stepfather. When meeting her for the first time I was very apprehensive. She had roamed freely around the farm; she was not house trained, in fact I doubt she had ever been inside a house, had never been on a lead and was very very timid indeed. In fact, she hid behind a chair and there she stayed, no amount of coaxing could get her to come out. Were my elderly parents, who lived in a small bungalow, going to be able to cope with this dog? After a visit to the vets for spaying and all the necessary injections, my stepfather took on the task of training her to walk on a lead. It will never cease to amaze me, even though her life had changed so drastically, how well she adapted to her new lifestyle and surroundings. Border Collies are very intelligent and she was soon house trained as well. She loved my stepfather and he loved her - they were inseparable. Everywhere he went, Lassie also went. On one occasion, whe
                                  n my stepfather went to one of his army reunions, I offered to look after his dog. Lassie never liked me very much, and I must say at this point that the feeling was mutual. But I could look after her, take her for walks, and feed her, after all it was only for one day, I could manage this. When she came into my home, the first thing she did was jump onto my brand new sofa. This was not allowed. But could I get her off? She growled at me. I tried to coax her; to be nice to her, to bribe her with food and finally shouted at her and tried to remove her forcibly, but had to remove my hand after narrowly missed being bitten. So there she stayed all day until my parents collected her. In 1984 my mother died. My stepfather coped very well by himself and he had his beloved Lassie. Then when Lassie was nine years old my stepfather died. So now I was left with a problem - what was I going to do with his dog? I learned that she had bitten his great niece, a young child, very badly. Having seen the photographs, I am quite sure that if they had reported the matter to the police, the dog would have been destroyed. I decided to take her home with me until I could come to a decision about her future. I had at this time a one-year-old Doberman dog, Max. And it was immediately clear to me that these two dogs were never going to get along with each other. On the couple of occasions when they accidentally came into contact with each other all hell broke loose. And one fight in the kitchen resulted in my being bitten whilst trying to separate them. And my cats were not too keen on a dog that was continually trying to round them up! Enough was enough, Lassie had to go! I made enquiries at a local animal shelter. I was informed that it was doubtful if they could find a home for a nine-year-old dog, particularly as she could not be re-homed with children. Everyone wanted puppies or at least young dogs. If I signed Lassie over to them, she w
                                  ould most probably be destroyed. I also considered taking her to the vets to have her put to sleep myself, after all as someone pointed out to me, she was 9 years old, she might only live another year or two! If I had done this, I would have found it difficult to live with my conscience. Lassie was my stepfather's dog, his pride and joy who he loved very much; somehow doing such a deed would have been disloyal to his memory. At this point, a solution was offered to me. I had been taking Max to obedience classes and the trainer offered him a good home. Thinking back, it has surprised me how quickly Lassie adapted to life with me. Her lifestyle had altered drastically once again. She changed completely, she became a different dog, loving and loyal. Even the cats became used to her. In fact, Mia ( a brown Burmese) used to come with us for walks. Lassie in front, followed closely by Mia and myself at the rear. Of course, we had to stop from time to time for Mia, when she would decide to climb a tree. And Lassie never once tried to climb onto my sofa. At this point I also found something quite by chance that Lassie liked to do. On one of our walks, we passed a group of young lads playing football. Lassie chased after the ball; when one boy kicked the ball to the other end of the pitch, Lassie was there too. The boys were quite happy to let her join in as long as she did not overstay her welcome; so we limited the football sessions to one five minute session once a week. And from then on, when we went for walks we took a ball with us; throwing the ball for Lassie to retrieve provided her with plenty of enjoyable exercise. I also built a mini agility course for her in my garden. This was not entirely successful. I went over the jumps, whilst she went underneath!! (not daft, my dog) Lassie kept in good health until she was about 14 years old when she suffered a stroke. She was unable to walk; I had to carry
                                  her everywhere. The vet told me that she would probably suffer further strokes, which she did. The first stroke was the worst and it took six weeks for her to recover, but she was never quite the same again and settled down to a quieter life. Her eyesight deteriorated. She was now 16 years old. She happily pottered about the garden, but walks had to be very short indeed. Her black and white face was now grey with age, her eyes cloudy, she became incontinent. Despite this, she always had a healthy appetite. One afternoon, I looked out of my window to see her lying down in the garden. She had fallen at an awkward angle and I thought that she had died. I rushed out; when I came close, she raised her old head up to me. I helped her up and brought her into the house. A decision had to be made which I found very difficult indeed. For all of us who keep animals it is a decision that we dread - we hope that nature will take its course without us having to intervene. But life isn't always like that, it is difficult to be objective about the well being of a loyal friend. It is a decision that we can sometimes too easily put off, especially if our pet is still eating well. We hope that our pets will get better, or at least not get worse. Because our pets mean so much to us and have spent so long as part of our family that we can't face life without them and we put the decision off. It was made worse because she was the last living link to my parents. This dog, who initially I had disliked, had become a very loyal and faithful friend. The vet called at my house to collect her. I gave her one last cuddle, with tears streaming down my face, before the vet took her away. Although she was not suffering, she was in the first stages of liver failure - her condition would begin to deteriorate and she would not have quality of life. This was the last time I saw her; my only regret is that I did not ask for her ashes
                                  , so that I could have scattered them over the field where she had joined in with the football games. I have often been asked would I recommend this breed of dog as a pet. The answer is probably yes with some reservations. The breed is well known to Sheepdog Trial enthusiasts who watch the breed work with uncanny skill. This breed is quick-minded, highly intelligent and faithful although extremely sensitive to harsh rebuke. Welsh Border Collies need something to do - obedience work or agility courses are excellent. They are happiest when they are working. They do not like to be left on their own for long periods, so this variety would not be suitable for someone who was out at work for long periods. Although I never left Lassie alone with young children, a Welsh Border Collie puppy might be suitable to be kept with children, but keep in mind that this breed will instinctively nip the ankles of small children due to their herding instincts. I often have a dream. My stepfather is in a field full of poppies and is surrounded by lots and lots of black and white Welsh Border Collies. I am quite sure that if there is a 'doggie heaven' Lassie is up there somewhere too. Lassie died on 1st September 1993, aged 16 years 4 months. I have not owned a dog since. Janna 8th December 2001

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