And another bitterly cold day with a sharp wind...I'm so limited in what I'm able to do when the wind snatches the breath from me in an instant and I'm left hanging onto whatever is stationery while my life flashes before my eyes and I'm planning what song I'd like played as I slide into the burning fires...not that I'll be there to hear it of least I sincerely hope I won't be.

So I sort of dither on the doorstep and make a mad dash into my workroom and then have a bit of a sit down to recover. Sitting still in the warm and there isn't a bother on me, but if I sit about all day I shall grow as big as a house and I wouldn't like that one bit.

And I know I could wrap a scarf around my mouth but when I've done that before in sheer desperation it gets all sort of soggy and I can't go out like it 'cos I tend to look as though I'm up to no good.

When I went up to Dublin last year I saw a girl wearing a full burka with just a sort of mesh across her eyes for her to see through...mind you she was wearing extremely high heels which Alastair pointed out by digging me in the ribs and hissing 'Look at her shoes' once she'd stalked past...I'd not have noticed her feet actually...I was so taken with the fact she was swathed from head to toe in this voluminous garment and must have had an odd view of the world through her little mesh grill.

So I'm afraid I stared at her...probably had my mouth open as well.

Actually most of the time I was in Dublin I felt like a proper culchie because there were so many people who were either dressed differently or behaving in a bizarre way...never mind the shops stuffed full of stuff that cost a small fortune when I could go to Penney's and get much the same for a fraction of the cost...and that was just the window displays. Didn't go into any shops at all, apart from a bookshop, which doesn't count.

After we'd been to see the bodies in the crypt, Des and I sat outside on a bench in the graveyard and had a ciggie while we watched the bewigged lawyers going to and fro to the Law Courts...some of them looked far too young to be out of school, never mind sailing past looking terribly important in their flowing gowns with a small woman trotting behind lugging sheaves of vital evidence in her arms while trying to keep up and keep upright in a short tight skirt...

I have to confess that I stared at them as well.

Now, I didn't get to meet Pat Ingoldsby. He is a true Dublin eccentric who writes very funny short stories about his day to day life and hands out his books to passersby...he has COPD as well and he wears a black fedora and has a drooping moustache and keeps cats.

Des was a trifle scathing about him actually...said the tourists love him and want their photos taken with him and as that had been just what I'd been hoping for I kept very quiet and didn't mention it again...

I know the nurse who once cared for Pat when he was in hospital and her husband told me he was a grand fellow to be sure though not so good after a few glasses of the black stuff. And this coming from a man who can comfortably drink half a bottle of whiskey every day...

So, he's on my list for the next time I go up to Dublin.

And I'll make Des grit his teeth and pander to me by taking my photo with him.

I think that's it for today...I'm going to chop up chicken for Himselfs curry...feed the old people...and then spend the evening reading. Half way through an excellent thriller set in Ireland...though it veers towards the un-necessarily gruesome at times. But I think I'm past those bits now...just a case of finding the guilty party.