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Friday, 1 March 2013

Creative Writing Workshops and Other Goings on in Arundel, Friends and the work of Douglas Ettridge the artist.

Good Morning
Arundel Eccentrics

Back to grey, and I'm not referring to the book
that seems to have broken all literary records.

I would love to know
HOW has she done that?
I've not read it,
but I know a million people who
 have and are hooked on it.
Well, OK, not quite a million. LOL

Anyway, I was alluding to the weather,
and I don't have time to read
 a paper, let alone a book
 at the moment.

I get around that by listening to
 talking books from the library while 
pasting fish and shell decoupage on 
chests of drawers.

Then while paint and varnish are drying ,
I manage to get out and enjoy the Arundel Countryside.

Arundel really is the 
most beautiful place to live.

On the surface, 
 it's a quiet,
 rather sleepy little town.


there is so much that goes on here,
that even when you live in the town,
if you don't keep the proverbial
 ear to the ground you will miss it.

There's all sorts of theatre stuff to begin with.
Drip Action and the Arundel Players 
have been in the town for years.

The Players are based in the gorgeous little
 Priory Playhouse 
up in London Road.
Its like going into a dolls house.
Quite an experience.

 Here's the front door,
but I can only find this 
Christmas Card image for the moment. LOL

Writing workshops in Arundel 

I joined a creative writing group this week.
So you should see an improvement
 in my delivery of 
what's going on around here. Ha ha

The workshop is in the town and many of those
 around the table I knew, 
 or at least I was on nodding terms with.

I have to say I felt a certain amount
 of trepidation as I walked in the door,
but it was great fun.

Hopefully I learnt a lot before 
we had a break and 
the glass of the vino.

If you know what I mean............

Anyway, if anyone is interested to join let me know and
I'll find out if there are any places left.
It promises to be an interesting ten weeks

Amazing friends

Just recently, 
we had a dear friend
 I have known for 
more years than I care to remember,
 stay with us for a few days.

We chatted about this n that.
 We went out shopping and window shopping
 looking at fabulous zingy
 laptops and ipads, 
the latter of which I said I would love,
 but just couldn't afford to lash out on at the moment.

As this dear mate,
hopped on the train,
 at Arundel Railway station,
on the way back to London,
she handed me an envelope,
 with a thank you card it.

As the train doors were closing, 
she yelled out,
" It's for you!
not for new tyres for the car,
not for a new washing machine,
Its for you..."

The doors closed and she was
 still mouthing something,
that I never quite caught.

When I climbed back into the car,
I couldn't wait any longer,
the intrigue was unbearable.

 I opened the card,
 and there inside, was the 
cash to buy myself an ipad.

I'm telling you ....the tears welled up in my eyes.


they can 
comfort you
 hurt you,
upset you,
amaze you,
touch you,

and a million other things besides......

That's what makes them so precious hey?

Otherwise, how did Facebook become such a phenomenon

 My friend later asked me
" Has it changed your life?"

It hasn't quite...but its added a huge new dimension to it.

And I love it almost as much, 
as I love all my dear friends... LOL

Nah, only joking.

You can't drink red wine with an ipad.......

Or scream with laughter,
until the tears stream down your face
and you roll around, hysterically, on the floor.

Here's a little brochure that was my first attempt on the aforementioned new best friend.

These chests are now to be found in some very upmarket stores, both here and the US.

Some of our USA readers might well be interested in the snippet a bit further down.

Humour me though....or is it humor me?
and just read my little bit of nonsense first.

 A few years ago I used to nurse 
 a few years......... who am I kidding?

Anyway, the elderly gentleman I used to nurse I would take out in the afternoons.
We drove everywhere in the car and then out and
 about having the most extraordinary adventures
 with me pushing him all over Sussex in his old wheelchair.

We got locked in to the car park in Porstmouth shopping centre.
Actually, now I think of it we got locked in to several places. centres....restaurants.

We enjoyed each others company and just lost all track of time.
Our main purpose on these jaunts was to pull together a list of the best 
cafes to serve, carrot cake (my cake of choice)
 and those toffee, chocolate, rather sickly slices ( his choice)

Our adventures, however, didn't really compare 
with that of  one of my colleagues
 who also took him out and about.

She used to take the large, very strong, labrador dog as well.

As they trundled down 
Arundel's very steep
 High Street one summer's afternoon
the dog lurched at a smell, pulling my friend,
the wheelchair slipped out of her grasp
and our lovely gent went careering down 
the hill only coming to a halt right at the bottom,
 by Pallants the deli.

The thing was, she told us afterwards,
no-one tried to stop our chuckling gent,
who was as happy as Larry,
whoever Larry is.

Instead of bravely attempting 
to get in the wheelchairs path
to prevent a hideous accident
they all leapt out of the way.

He was unscathed anyway.

Oh we did have some larks.

His wife, (who I still meet up with regularly for dinner at
The Bay Tree, in Tarrant Street )
still says to this day,
 we made his last few years such fun.

Anyway I totally digressed lovely gent was a great friend of Douglas Ettridge, an artist.
He also, was quite a character, and we often used to go for afternoon tea, with Doug and his wife.

Doug could often be seen driving round the rather small English village of Angmering in a huge American car. 
I do know his work was immensely popular in the US

So here is a little about him....and one of his paintings that is for sale


Douglas Ettridge (1927-2009) was a leading aviation and motoring artist in oil, acrylic, gouache and watercolour, working in both his native Britain and the United States.  Born in north London, as a child he regularly sketched the planes he saw, including the Nazi warplanes over London at the height of the Blitz.  He left school at sixteen and worked for a commercial artist whilst attending night school.  This tuition and support, coupled with his own inherent abilities, enabled him to gain a strong understanding of how to paint almost any subject.
In the 1950s Douglas Ettridge became a prominent member of the newly formed Society of Aviation Artists, whose members held an annual show at The Guildhall, London.  He was in august company as other early members included Gerald Coulson, Terence Cuneo, Roy Nockolds, David Shepherd, Norman Wilkinson and Frank Wootton. He was a member of the London Sketch Club and exhibited also with the Royal Society of Marine Artists.
By the late 1950s he had moved to the United States, and he achieved considerable success as a painter of aeroplanes, balloons, ships and racing cars in that country. He had an annual exhibition in Los Angeles for very nearly fifty years, and for the final twenty years or more that show was held at the Airtel Plaza Hotel at Van Nuys Airport. 
Doug Ettridge had studios for some years in Santa Barbara, California, and at Worplesdon in Surrey. His work was acquired for many important collections in America, including Frank Sinatra, Danny Kaye, John Travolta, Clay Lacy, the San Diego Aerospace Museum, The Museum of Flight, The American Hall of Aviation History, Brazilian Air Ministry, and several major airlines such as Qantas and American Airlines. He was living at Angmering in West Sussex at the time of his death.

Have a great day

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