Watching nature take its course, from the top of a hill in northern England

Banging on


Spatial awareness and a bit of creative thinking have been called for, to accommodate a guest and a drum kit in to the spare room.

Yesterday was bright and clear, but cold;


Mr UHDD, had risen at 5:30 to go to the Lake District, for a bit of a Christmas hill bash with his fell running mates. Kindly he bought me a mug of tea before he left, I am not sure I really wanted to be awake at 05:50 on a Sunday morning, but I never turn down a mug of tea; in my experience you never know when you will be offered another one, and a mug of tea in the hand is worth two in the pot. There will be many more weekends like this, because Mr UHDD is about to take on a bit of a challenge, he thinks he has been ‘considering it’ for a few months now; I on the other hand have known for a few months now, that he ‘will do it.’

He is going to run a ‘Bob Graham’ two words, that sound innocuous, but translate to……

The Bob Graham Round of 42 peaks is one of the most demanding challenges in England.With a ascent of app’ 28,500ft and a app’ distance of 74 miles.

And did I mention that it’s all done in 24 hours? You will be hearing a lot more about this, I promise.

Christmas is going to a quiet affair, on the other hand we are having a house full at New Year, friends from near and far, no one will be driving or waiting for a taxi, so bed/ mattress space is needed. The boys and I take on the task of a bit of redistribution of the bedroom furniture, so that it is possible to get a full size drum kit and a guest in the spare room.

Ha ha, you think that the boys are having a drum kit for Christmas don’t you? Well the drum kit has been with us for over a year now, we have just never got round to sorting the room out around it. The drum kit was something of an unexpected arrival, we went out for lunch, with friends, on the other side of the Pennines, we took a bottle of wine and a bunch of flowers, and came back with a drum kit and a crate of War Hammer figures and one less cheque in the cheque book; however I drew the line at the pet lizard and a snake that they also tried to palm off on us, a big NO! Our friends boys, have now fledged, and have student loans to support, (is there much meat on a lizard and can you ‘bar-b-q’ a snake? come on lads show the same sort of initiative that your parents did when they were at uni)

So having dragged Ikea ‘smorgasbord’ book cases and ‘Slartybartfast’,chests of draws around the house the boys and I are rather pleased with our efforts. I always said that my children would learn to play something like the flute of clarinet; something they could carry themselves, so how did we end up with a drum kit? Well like many of the parental ideals you start out with, like ‘my child will never eat junk food’ ( have you ever taken your kids to a bowling party?) or ‘ I would never allow my child will to sit in parental bed with a biscuit and a beaker of milk , watching cartoons on Sky TV, whilst parents sleep’ Oh yes you will if you are THAT exhausted, you will you, you will do ANYTHING to get another 1/2 hours sleep. (and in truth it doesn’t seem to have done them much harm.) In the end you give in, well just a little bit.

I rather like the drums and the advantage of an old farmhouse is that they have very thick walls and no neighbours

Banging on

As an aside what we call the ‘spare room’ and the ‘bunk room’ were when we moved here, one long ‘dormitory room’, running from front to back of the house, (most traditional farm ‘long houses’ are one room deep) that was until Mr UHDD did whizy things with a few meters of 2X2 and some plaster board and made the space more usable as two rooms; legend has it and whilst it may be a ‘sepia tale’ the story goes, that when this was a working farm, they used the ‘dormitory room’ to raise turkeys in, to sell at Christmas, so if in the small hours of Christmas day there is a ghostly roll on the drums, that will be the ghost of turkeys past. Woooooohooooo, squawk.

Have a happy and peaceful Christmas


Author: uphilldowndale

Watching the rhythm of rural life, from the top of a hill in northern England. Having spent most of my life avoiding writing, I now need to do it! I am no domestic goddess, but if I were expecting visitors to my home, I would whisk round with the duster and plump up the cushions and generally make the place look presentable. I hope that by putting my words where others may see them it will encourage me to ‘tidy up and push the Hoover around’ my writing. On the other hand I may just be adding to the compost heap. Only time will tell! Pull up a chair, sit yourself down, I’ll put the kettle on.

14 thoughts on “Banging on

  1. Cue an old Jim Reeves song…”I hear the sound….of distant drums….”
    (one of my grandads favourite artists)

    Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christamas. Hope you have a cracking Chrimbo.


  2. Ooh, I just repainted our wee spare room (8 ft x 10 ft). It now houses three bookcass, a desk, a sofa that folds down to a futon and a small table. Hey, I could get the kids’ trombone and clarinet in there — but the keyboard wouldna fit!

  3. Won’t be at all bad if it’s anything like Jim Reeves, but…..I suspect that it won’t be!
    Happy Xmas to you and Mr. UHDD.

  4. I like that first picture!
    Thanks, and you too!

  5. I find out all sorts of things through reading this blog.

    Now UHDD has gone public about the BG attempt, I know I will get 100% support for it….. not that I really doubted I would! It’s big commitment, and I couldn’t attempt it without UHDD.

  6. Welcome to my blog Mr UHDD! Where have you been till now?
    (I think we need to find you an avatar.)

  7. Happy xmas to all your family
    Lv Joan x

  8. My little brother decided to learn drums many years ago. We didn’t mind too much, as he was joining a pipe band and could have picked bagpipes instead. And while I love the pipes, I do not love the sounds they make when beginners start caterwauling on them…

    Merry Christmas.

  9. Fell running – mad. Good luck.

  10. And by the way – how do you get the snow on the Blog?

  11. Found the snow – love it. Just got in from work – so many idiots, so little time!

  12. Gadget, that snow was made for your Christmas post, it’s splendid, with your grey back ground colour, it looks like a snow laden sky, whereas on mine, the green makes it look like a Christmas scene in a period drama, that was shoot in June, with an art department overspend; but Joe and I think its fun.
    Have you noticed the ‘wind’ is blowing in a different direction, on your blog 🙂 just goes to show, your rural is not my rural.

    Stoney; BC (before children) we used to live just over the wall from the campus of Stirling University, they had summer schools each year for bagpipes, the tutors used to send the students off in to the grounds to practice, it made sitting out in the garden not all that relaxing, on the plus side they made remarkable progress through the week, thank goodness! Tom has been having drum lessons, so drums is OK

    Joan, happy Christmas to you and your family.

  13. The Bob Graham is a big one but I’m watching out for the Three Peaks this year – they’re in the World Championships so there should be some celebrities from the world of fell running about.

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