About roughseas

I’m an award-winning journalist, writer, editor, with 30 years in the business of journalism, public relations and publishing. I now work freelance.

After leaving university I worked as a researcher/writer in our county archaeology department on a book about the development of local towns.

I then gained an apprenticeship with a newspaper as a graduate trainee journalist, and passed my national qualification first time, when the average first-time pass rate was around 40%. Qualifying examinations included 100wpm shorthand, law, public administration, and a project – I chose education. These were gained on an intensive block-release course.

Our final exam consisted of four exams in a day, bashing everything out on a typewriter. Interview, council report, speech, and practical journalism. It was a long day.

Following that, I worked in sub-editing and took courses in subbing and graphic design for newspapers and magazines.

I moved into public relations as a government information officer working in HMG press offices, (health and safety, agriculture, food, and fisheries, and Downing Street – Prime Minister’s office) and after another spell in journalism, gained a job as a communications specialist with the National Health Service.

In the NHS, I wrote and published everything from patient leaflets, to board papers, to consultation documents, to quarterly newspapers to annual reports.

I also dealt with MPs, royal visits, acted as company secretary to the board, led business planning, performance management and complaints. Oh, and I managed cancer services and cancer screening too. Somewhere in there I achieved my MBA.

Editing for manuscripts

I will do a sample edit of a few pages for free. A full edit costs £100 minimum depending on page length, which includes a number of proof reads, plus liaison with the author, factual checking etc. Developmental editing is not included unless requested. I try to improve what you have done, not re-write it, unless you want that.

A copy of a manuscript is needed to give a price.

Editing for other works

CVs, letters, papers, reports, web site text.

Price is dependent on length and errors. Again, I need to see a full copy.

Writing

With a background as a general reporter, I have a wide portfolio that also includes my specialisms of history/archaeology, health, cancer, construction, nuclear power, and Land Rovers.

Main qualifications

National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) Proficiency Certificate, authorised by the Printing and Publishing Industry Training Board (PPITB)

BA (Hons) Ancient and Medieval History and Archaeology

Certificate in Managing Health Services (Cert MHS), accredited by the Institute of Health Services Management (IHSM)

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

I speak, read and write French, English and Spanish. And the odd bit of Latin.

164 thoughts on “About roughseas

  1. Thank you so much for your comment. I am shiny bright new to this blogging thing. As I approach the second half of my life I thought I would give it a go. It is nice to know that someone has a similar view.

    Roy fromthepigpen

    • Gosh! You must be young! Either that or you plan to live past 100, in which case you are still young.

      You may have worked out from your stats that I found you via The Foraging Squirrel and her Stupid People rant.

      This blog is my nice face. I write helpful informative posts and put up pretty photos and stuff like that about the idle life of an ex-pat. I rant over on Clouds. That is my naughty face, but only sometimes… :)

      • I do plan to live waaaaaay past 100. I am up to 110 so far! I will try to do things like understanding stats but I am not hugely comfortable with technology. I will have to look at cloud to see the other side of your janus mask!

        • Wow. Impressive. I am very serious on Clouds(movingin – but I never refer to the full title). However regular readers know they can get away with flippant posts in the comments section so the levity sneaks in. I think I made an effort on there to organise by categories so you can browse and graze.

  2. I’m glad to have started reading your person page as we’ll as Pippa’s. It’s nice to see someone else with a journalism background on a blog, and I really appreciate your writing. While not trained in Journalism (I majored in History and Spanish as well as minored in English) I do work in online media and really enjoy when I find a well-written blog. I look forward to reading this one and Pippa’s!

    • We don’t major and minor at UK universities, but my first degree was ancient and medieval history and archaeology. I had toyed with English or law as other options. Spanish is the one I lack a formal qualification for – I do keep thinking about going for one. Sometimes. But when I can speak, read and write it – who cares?

      Thanks for your comments and hunting out this one.

  3. Aha! So this is where you’ve been hiding, Misery! Where you blog ALL the time, it seems. Poor Pippa! Now that I know all about you, you may not have to play tag anymore. Of course, you didn’t mention anything about slankets or what you’re wearing here ;)

    Maybe I should follow this blog instead of Pip’s? I do enjoy reading about and seeing pictures of somewhere else.

    Hooroo x

    • Hello Pippa’s Sweetest One

      No hiding, I’m always here, that’s why I’m too lazy to change blog IDs to Pippa’s, poor deprived pup.

      Now don’t you stop following Pippa’s or he will be very upset. I will update it again soonest. Just after people have saved Rex.

  4. Hi,
    Recently http://elladeewords.wordpress.com was nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award by Pete Denton – Writer http://petedenton.wordpress.com.
    I have posted the award details at http://elladeewords.wordpress.com/2012/03/14/the-versatile-blogger-award-7-things-about-elladee/.
    The rules for accepting this award are as follows:
    1. Thank the award-givers and link back to them in your post.
    2. Share 7 things about yourself.
    3. Pass this award along 15 or 20 bloggers you read & admire.
    4. Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know about the award.
    Your blog is amongst the 20 that amuse & inspire me I nominated as my part in fulfilling rule 3. If you feel so inclined, please accept from me the Versatile Blogger Award, and my congratulations for great blogging, and pass it on to others also deserving.

    Best regards,
    EllaDee

  5. Hi, noticed you have quite your Itchy Feet at Forty blog due to blogger being a pain. Did you know you can get WordPress to import your blog? So you could get all your posts on one…or two, or three as the case may be. :)

    • I have imported it. As far as I am aware! (to here). I imported the Clouds one too. I even imported the dog one. The one that hasn’t worked is the Land Rover one :( I am sure that has nothing to do with the fact that it got the most hits all the time, and Blogger didn’t want me to move it.

        • I have. On more than one occasion. In fact I have tried it on more than one occasion to three different URLs and contacted two different happiness engineers (groan!) at WordPress. It is so interesting I guess I should blog about it.

          But on the imports that have worked, the only annoying thing is that the piccies have been downsized. They still blow up, but I like bigger ones on the blog. The dog’s comments got lost on his which was a nuisance. Probably because he had too many.

          • Have you tried resizing the pics using HTML? or if you don’t use HTML have you tried using the image editor when you are in visual mode (using the edit mode on the imported posts).

            • Yes!! I normally use HTML, I don’t like the visual mode particuarly, I feel out of control if I’m not using HTML !!

              I suppose I could have a go with the image editor but if it didn’t work with HTML I doubt it would work with editor.

              I’m guessing the problem is that they weren’t originally uploaded to whatever WP uses as its pic server aka Blogger’s Picassa. So you can’t fiddle around within the HTML because there is no reference back to the original upload. If that makes sense. Nor am I keen on changing a few thousand photos. Got enough on my plate reposting every land rover post individually :(

              • :D No, but thanks for your suggestions. They were all totally valid, and I might not have tried them. As I say, I don’t think I tried the visual mode, just because.

                If you are looking at back posts, read whichever you prefer, itchyfeet or roughseas. There’s probably quite a change in style and subject matter over the years. I think it’s interesting how our blogs morph without us even noticing it, so I like to stop and check out where I am going from time to time to make sure it is still vaguely coherent.

  6. Hi there I came here via Andrew Petcher’s blog re Venice and yes it is time you went back there, 26/7 years is far too long to be away from there.

    I would like to invite you to join us at http://www.homeexchange50plus.com if swapping homes for a holiday is of interest to you.

    We are still a ‘young’ website and in need of lots more members so please tell your friends about us with our thanks.

    If it is of interest we can send you an article about Home Exchange to include in your website as some of your readers may find this a great way to travel and perhaps we can exchange links as I am sure our members would enjoy reading your blog.

    Regards

    Brian Luckhurst

    • Ok, I’ll do a post at some point, although I’m sure my friends don’t do house swaps – or maybe they do? Who knows.

      At some point we might want to do something with our Spanish finca, although Gibflat is well needing to be tidied. We’ll see.

      Thanks for your comment.

    • Thank you. It seems you have as many diverse blogs as I do, and also moved from blogspot to wordpress. Glad I have found the rest of your blogs. I must post about Elephanta Island (off Bombay) on my everypic blog and see what you think to that :)

        • On the sidebar, the first section is ‘my other blogs’. That should work.

          One ranty one, one with a photo that tells a story, Itchyfeet is the one before this (now imported), one Land Rover one (still on blogger address due to import problems) and one dog one. Depends on your interests. I started one blog, but then, some things seem to need their own space. As do we all.

          No need to apologise, I tend to forget on different blogs whether I have remembered to make the links or not, but they appear to be on here.

          I loved mumbai (bombay when I went!!) I can’t write that post today as it needs too much work, but I will let you know when I do if you don’t get chance to visit. And thank you for the follow.

          • Oh well, I will surely go through the other blogs over the weekend. And I look forward to the mumbai one, whenever you do write it.
            And hey! no thanks for the follow. I do that because your writings are worth my time. Thanks for stopping by mine…or else I would never have found yours!

            • It seems to be pure chance to find blogs that suit our interests, content, style of writing, photos – I think it is the whole mix that makes a blog attractive (or not!!). I follow some very different blogs, not a lot, but each one, I think is distinctive.

  7. I love animals, Spain, and vegetarianism, although I don’t follow it strictly at all anymore, but I have deep respect and admiration for those who do. Thank you for inspiring me. Enjoy Spain. I am envious.
    Looking forward to reading you!

  8. Hello, Roughseasinthemed! I am getting involved in your blogging and started to read about you. Would like to follow you on Twitter if you please and also I would like to know your real name, if possible. Best regards!

    • Thanks for your comment and for visiting my blog. I’m quite happy being roughseas on here, I’ve got quite attached to it! I’m not on Twitter, I never really got the hang of it, and I spend enough time blogging as it is. Thanks again :)

  9. Roughseasinthemed,
    I was just about to bribe you to follow my blog, and here you are, on your own accord.
    Life is good.
    Le Clown

  10. I found your blog via a comment you made on the support forums about the recent change to commenting procedure. I’m seriously thinking about moving my blog from Blogger for the same reason as you – the dire new interface and all the glitches – and wondered whether you had any regrets about moving. I only have one blog and it’s relatively new, but it matters a lot to me and I don’t want to wreck it or lose my readership. Do you bear scars from the process?

    • Regrets about moving from Blogger? No. While I dislike the current changes in WP and think they are a step backwards, they are not as annoying as the problems I had with Blogger.

      I should say that I have built up far more regular readers more quickly with WP. I think the topics changes will slow down new readers, so I will have to work at that.

      The reasons I moved from Blogger were about glitches with MY blogs which is totally different to systemic changes that WP has introduced. They aren’t messing with my blog, Blogger was. So unless WP starts introducing changes to my blog, I’ll stay with it. I’ll just moan extremely loudly on the forums when I have time.

      Incidentally, I did lose most of my blogger readership on the move, but it had declined anyway. I would be very cautious about moving. I’ll check out your blog in a short while.

        • Right, now I understand. I think. I still have all my blogger blogs (in case) but I do think WordPress is still a better format. I don’t know about the experience of bloggers commenting on wp anymore as that is now my main platform but I did find it irritating to have to fill in email details, but I think it is meant to autofill?

          I now find commenting on blogger just as infuriating. There is obviously such a war between them that the open ID/wordpress never works and I HAVE to log in with my blogger google account.

          People will follow you if they are interested enough. A couple of former bloggers even started WP accounts at my recommend.

          It really depends why you are considering moving. Part of my rationale was because I had less control over the layout. I have none on WP !! but there are so many choices of theme that I can grudgingly live with that. I was able to tweak and play with the HTML on blogger but it just became a chore, so easier to accept less control on WP and an acceptable layout.

          The dog has lost out more than me. Virtually all his dogblog pals were blogger and the majority have fallen off the end. Such is life.

          If you want to compare my blogs the url is the same except for blogger/wordpress, with the exception of roughseas, the predecessor was itchyfeetatforty.blogspot.com. Otherwise you can find everypicturetellsone, pippadogblog, cloudsmovingin all still over at blogger.

          One of the best things about wordpress to me, is the way the comment notification works. Far superior to blogger unless they have changed that in my absence as I noticed they have a new interface now. But immediate notification on your dashboard main screen is very clever.

          Anyway, any other questions ask away. Your photos of Scotland would probably look better on WP! I think WP caters better for photographers.

          • That is really helpful. Thanks so much for taking the time to visit and comment like this. I’ve taken on board what you say about being cautious and may content myself at present by giving my Blogger blog a cleaner look, which is one of the things I like so much about WordPress. This would probably set off my photos better too. Off to forage in the store of Blogger formatting options….

            • I really loved my blogger blogs, especially when I had customised the html stuff for colours, width, header, fonts. But I really couldn’t live with the arbitrarily changing fonts, which was a key part of the (clean) look I wanted. Twentyeleven on wordpress provides pretty much what I want, and does have some extra tweaks, eg loading a separate photo for each post as a header. I have a main blog header photo, but if you click on individual posts you will see different photos to reflect that post. Not sure who notices that apart from me but I like it!

              Let me know how you go on, and keep in touch. They both have their pros and cons, so as I say if you are happyish with blogger stay there. WP is clearly fiddling behind the scenes right now so may well end up ahead of blogger in design terms again.

              I ran two blogs for a while. That’s an easy option, and with the exception of my Land Rover blog all the others imported to WP easily.

              • You have been so helpful, roughseas. Thanks very much. As I’ve done a makeover to a much simpler ‘WP’ style and can manage to keep my fonts OK (mainly by checking and rechecking before and after publishing) I think I’ll bide my time as long as I still have the old Blogger interface to work with. The new one has SO many problems (include accessibility issues which I nagged them about) that its final implementation has now been put off for the foreseeable future (it should have happened last month!) That will also give WP time to settle down after the recent commenting and Reader changes, so that I can make a sensible decision when I know what’s what. In the meantime i’m glad to have met you and shall enjoy exploring your blogs.

              • Have you just done that?? I’m sure it looks different to the other day. Let’s catch up later via each other’s blogs. Keep an open mind on what to do, but don’t rule out WP. You may want to browse around some other WP blogs for their looks, have a look at my ‘blogs I visit’ page (which needs updating but there is a variety of blogs on there).

              • Yes, I’ve been messing around in the template designer. :-) Will keep in touch as you suggest and WP is still very much a possibility at some stage, even if not yet. I have a bad feeling about the new Blogger interface….

    • You have a nice blog, with some great photos, so why bother. I think there are a few changes wp has made that are bad but hey, that’s life. Got another blogpal in Vancouver so interested to see your take on the city :)

  11. Love animals too, and animal rights! Noticed you stated “partner.” What does that mean? Here in the States it is bisexual, heterosexual, lesbian, or just a boyfriend. I don’t understand the term “partner” exactly.

  12. Hi! I’m Big Dog Ralph’s secretary. I just wanted you to know that I nominated your blog for the Versitile Blogger Award. And I mentioned Pippa’s blog while I was at it. Love them both.

    • Hey thanks a lot. I noticed your blog the other day and had a glance, and thought must make time for a proper read. Didn’t realise it was you though!!

      I found another good American history blog a while back and have lost it. I’ve stopped using topics in WordPress since they imported it to reader. Poor old Pippa’s blog has been abandoned for ages :o so we’ve not visited any dogblogs. When we do Ralph’s is always one of the first to look at, he is gorgeous.

      I’ve got a couple of other awards to mention so I’ll include this one in the next post about them. Need to find a light-hearted topic though!! as blog awards don’t really go with serious politics or drug use or whatever.

  13. Hello, I just found your blog and wondered if you would be interested in applying for a show I’m working on an ITV show called ‘May the Best House Win’, we’re filming in Spain/Gibraltar and are looking for all different kinds of houses. Are you sill renovating your Finca or is that complete now?

    • Hi Jen

      We’re always permanently renovating our houses, they are never finished until the day before we sell! Both Gibflat and finca are still works in progress – but I think you will be on the sixth series of your show before we have anything remotely televisable.

      So thank you very much for your interest. But I doubt we can help. Best of luck with the show. Although if you need any help on the ground, scouting around, Spanish/Andaluz assistance, I may be of more help there. Have you got anything in Gib? I may know of a couple.

  14. Thanks for getting back, sounds like a great life out there! You’ll be pleased to know it’s raining here! if you do know anyone who would be interested then feel free to pass on my email, we’ll be over in Spain in a couple of weeks on so it would be great to visit a few people in Gibraltar. My email is jen.crawford-smyth(at)itv.com. (sorry I didn;t know how to message directly)

  15. Hi, thanks for following my cycling blog. I’m impressed that you have several blogs. I’m going to go and have a look at them now. I run two and have ideas for two more, but how to find the time? I’ve got ideas and I love to write, but time, oh, time is my obstacle and my enemy. Cheers, Ros

    • Well, I keep up to them differently, depending on what I have to say. When I’m on-line I try and write one post a day, but not on every blog. I’m not sure that it is impressive though, rather more like self-indulgence :D

      Oddly I rarely write about cycling, although there are a few posts kicking around, but we don’t get much time for it at the moment, whereas a few years ago we were out every day, and had built up better distance. I did get out Monday morning for a nice short ride though and really enjoyed it.

  16. Hey there! I love your blog! I’m so glad I found it :)
    And journalism and health services? Seems like an intersting combo!
    Must definitely give you loads to write about!

  17. Hello love, do you have a link to photos of Gib. I see the photos on your header, they are so beautiful. Do you have a link with photos on another blog? Gib seems like an interesting place.

    • Hi there L. Thank you, but no I don’t. I’m not a fan of photoblogs per se, I like to know the story behind a pic, so even my not-a-photo-blog always has words, and I don’t think there is a single pic of Gib on there! This blog has most of the Gib pix but they are taken as and when I’m out and about and then used for the next post. But there is no photo album anywhere, which I think is what you are really asking. (eg like Flickr, Picassa, or even FaceBook).

      The permanent header photo gets changed when I get the urge, although I’ve left the water one up for a while as I really like that, and it suits the title. As the 2011 WordPress theme lets you put up a new header for each post I try and do a relevant one per post too. I’ve got a page explaining each permanent header photo that I’ve used, although come to think of it, once I have changed it the photo is gone, so maybe I’ll add the photos to that page.

      The only other way to look at gib pix would be via the categories on the sidebar, and look at Gib, but that would be a bit tedious I think :D

  18. Ok, just looking at Gib pictures on Wikipedia are not the same..boring. I like blogging photos at times, especially of Gib. The population is so small. I wonder what the landscape is like, the people, the culture, the food, religion, ethinicities, is it relaxed, is it busy, where do people work? The culture here is so fast paced it drives me crazy. Everything here is right now and go, go, go. I dream of other places that are not this way. I enjoy research on other places, as you can see from my blog. I have a “dream” trip planner, for when I secretly marry a very rich man (or woman), before I get too old.

    :)

    • Thank you for that. It’s a bit of a mix! Mostly about Gib and Spain, but the pages (which I need to update) separate out specifics like books, poetry, recipes. And really exciting stuff about me.

      You won’t find any pix of Liverpool or the Wirral on here. My old pix get scanned in and posted on my Everypic blog, with a bit of context.

      I was looking through some old photos yesterday and found some Liverpool ones (and Heysham) from when I did my Isle of Man trip,

      http://everypicturetellsone.wordpress.com/2012/08/14/only-one/

      so at some point I will get around to posting about Liverpool. How to cram three years into one photo post though?

      • Nice post :-) well when you get around to posting about Liverpool you have to let us put it onto our website and blog it would be good to share your memories. If you ever feel like sharing some of your work on the website please feel free to. It would be great to have your thoughts. admin@thewirralhub.com. Have a great week :-)

  19. I’m having a great time looking around your site. Thanks for commenting on mine; I’ve learned a great deal from you.

    I wanted to be a journo, myself, but did not have the necessary skills at writing. :) At least, back then I didn’t. Ha!

    Glad I found your blog.

    • Thank you. I think yours is a great blog too, and I really enjoyed my first look at your writing. I didn’t spend long in the Phillppines :( but I did enjoy my too short stay.

      I have to say your English is superb (far better for example than my Spanish). You write so fluently. Go for whatever you can get.

  20. You’re very patient with some of your commenters, more so than me I think :)
    It makes me laugh when folk ask for ideas for their blogs – it’s meant to be a personal thing.
    Another rib-tickler are the blog awards. I worked out how many recipients would be involved if one followed the instructions and the numbers quickly became astronomical.
    My other faves at the mo are people who comment without reading the article, and those wannabe writers who can’t be bothered to check what they write. Folks seem to see writing as some mystical event and many feel editing and proofreading beneath them.
    I teach creative writing :( (hence no patience left) and people really do say things like, ‘I’m not into proofreading…’ Into?
    I’ll be back to read more articles when I’ve fed my wife…

    • I try and be polite on here, mostly.

      As for ideas, I have far to many and not enough time to write which is why I have been taking some time off lately.

      I could easily write a post every day on at least two of my blogs, if not more. And by the time you have added in photos, research, links etc – there is no time left to mop the floor.

      I certainly don’t need all this silly inspiration from wordpress or these crazy challenges that go round like wildfire, although I will confess to linking to a couple of photo ones because they fitted with a post I was doing anyway. But yes, if people don’t know what to write, they shouldn’t be bloggiing.

      Another friend did the calculations and has a nice – all awards kindly refused, thank you – sign, or something similar. Clever idea actually. If I get them, I say thanks, and that’s it. If people want to now which blogs I like they can visit my blogroll page (which is being updated today after many months) because they are the ones I would award anyway.

      It’s easy to miss points in a post, and sometimes I have to go back to double check what the post said before I comment. Plus, there is often extra info in the comments, which I normally tend to read too. Not everyone does. If I use a link within a post it is because it is relevant, but v few people ever click on them. Some do. Same with ones at the bottom.

      You forgot to mention text speak. Fine on mobiles that don’t have a touchscreen but on blogs??!! I can understand people with dyslexia not getting spelling right, but people with dyslexia don’t use text speak, you can tell the difference. And I admire them for trying, especially when smartarses on the internet criticise them for poor spelling.

      I hate proofing on screen. I really do, although I used to love doing it on galley proofs, or on the stone at the newspaper. After numerous re-checks I can’t think of a post I have published that I haven’t had to re-edit!

      • Agreed, but I think I can tell sloppy writing a mile off. I never thought about mobile devices though.
        I use voice recognition for long pieces as it’s much more efficient than any other method. It’s okay unless I cough or sneeze…

  21. I thought I’d pop over here to say, regarding your comment at E.B.’s, you are a hoot! And, I can only say this – I think HAL has me. Things were so much easier with typewriters. ;)

    • Which comment? To yours I guess. I write far too much on Pink’s, he brings out the worst in me! as I feel I can get away with being extremely badly behaved. I am polite and relatively unhooty on here. Less so on Clouds (one of my many other blogs). I like your pix by the way, I did have a quick peek so will return the visit when I am suitably awake to write something on yours that makes sense. (Doesn’t matter what I write on mine). And thanks for popping.

  22. Are you implying that doing amateur & immature ‘reviews’ of film / books / comics / music, ragefully exploding about random topics while drawing far fetched conclusions, inappropriate uses of punctuation, (such as the multiple obliques above and this run-on sentence) and having a constant state of writer’s block, overcome only by continuous rambling on a free Blog… doesn’t qualify me to call myself a “Journalist”?!

    I respectfully disagree ma’am.

    Other than that, your ‘bio’ was so well written that I haven’t even browsed the rest of your Blog to know what the hell it’s about before commenting here. So kudos. Looking forward to more well thought out posts.

    • The short answer is yes.

      The longer answer is, you could probably describe my writing as any of those. The only differences are that I rarely, if ever, have writer’s block (hence the need to have multiple blogs) and I have a bit of paper that says I am a qualified journalist. And I can tell my libel from my slander, my robberies from my burglaries and other really boring technical points like that.

      Given how many bloggers there are, some of whom are extremely good writers, thoughtful, creative, and some of whom are totally boring and downright appalling, I don’t think it is either reasonable or accurate to call them journalists. I think describing oneself as a skilled person is usually a reference to how people make/have made their money. Although I am the first to concede that there are plenty of people in journalism who haven’t passed their exams and are untrained. There are also plenty of people who have passed their exams, have served their apprenticeship, and are still bad writers. The way of the world.

      This blog is about life in Gib and Spain as an ex-pat Brit. Sometimes it’s about what I do, where I live/visit with some local info or history, sometimes it is about news stories in Spain and/or Gib and the local impact – as I see it.

      I tend to save my rants for my Clouds blog where I write about whatever takes my fancy on a particular day. Random photos appear on Everypic blog.

      Thank you for your visit and your comments and compliment.

  23. Well, aint/isn’t it nice to find a real life writer/journal person that knowed/knows how to right/write. I am somehow impressed to say the least. So glad you stopped in for a look or maybe not, over at my drab little ole blog about animules, etc. I might just like all that you have to say or rather I should put that as, all that you write. Somehow, I keep picking up the strangest subscribers of late (not meant as in odd or peculiar). I have not the foggiest why people subscribe to me other than to see how a dumb Texan attempts to string words together on a blog that is at this momement is some what messed up. I must explain that you will see typos, misspelled words, poor sentence structure, wrong verb and noun usage and, the whole nine yards of an under educated old person. Anyhow, thank you for subscribing and I shall return the favor.

    I don’t know if you feel insulted or gratified by my comments. I am joking, somewhat! Today, I feel rather sarcastic. I hope you do not take offense.

    You have a lovely blog and I’ll take a look at your other sites at a later date. I have much to do and little time in which to accomplish the tasks.

    Regards,
    Yvonne

    • Ha! Whether or not I know how to write right is a matter of opinion. I just happen to be qualified in it. Not the same thing. But at my equally old age, I have finally learned that you need to tell people you are good at what you do and then they think you are. Maybe.

      I subscribed because I saw you commenting on someone else’s blog and figured the title was worth a look. Some titles are intriguing. Others, eg JoBloggsBlog, are not. Although I suppose that one would be worth a look :D

      I quite like Texans. They seem to be opinionated, arrogant, and come from the largest part of their country. A bit like me. Many of them speak Spanish too. Although a bit too keen on guns, unlike me.

      Ironically I had drafted a post called Saturday sarcasm – but ended up cooking and sleeping so it will morph into Sunday sarcasm now. Or rather, tomorrow. Sarcasm rarely offends me. But half the time I doubt I even notice it. If I do, I probably laugh, just as I did at your comment. Nicely, I add quickly.

      Thanks. Sounds like your day is going to be like mine was. I didn’t accomplish many of mine, but mañana, mañana.

      Good of you to take the time to visit and comment, Y.

      • Why, thank you for the long reply. I speak very little Tex Mex but my husband had a fairly good working ability to speak enough spanish to to “get by.” I think you have met or think that Texans are arrogant although that is true of some that I know. I have lived my entire life within about a 25-30 mile radius. I don’t travel so I enjoy reading about other bloggers wanderings, etc. If you have not read my bio take a quick look when you can. It is odd but the people that I call my blogging friends are all British or formerly British (3 are living else where at this time) I have found them to be warm, helpful, and caring.

        So I am looking forward to reading all about what you are up to and about your thoughts on a variety of subjects.

        Oh yes, I have been know to express my opinion and not always in a tactful manner. I hope not to offend you when I comment on your blog.

        Regards,
        Yvonne

        • I usually do long replies because shorter ones tend to lead to misunderstandings, although so do long ones.

          Seriously I was being slightly flippant about Texan attitude but I do like the ones I have encountered over the internet. You have to agree there is a certain degree of spirit among your people?

          I did read your ‘about’ page, like you, it’s one of the first places I go to get a feel for what someone is writing. And where they are coming from (geographically and otherwise). Brits can be ok, but so can Americans, Australians, Canadians, and well most people really :D

          Brits are also pretty thick-skinned so I doubt I’ll be offended. I’m fairly polite on this blog, bit sharper on the Clouds one :D Take your pick.

          And ~ nice to meet you.

  24. I gave up animal and poultry meat a year ago, but I cannot give up the fish and seafood!! how else would I reminisce about being shat on by large seabirds whilst freezing to death on Bridlington Harbour walls with my family? Happy Days :) though of course the fish and chips in Oz are not really the same…..unless we go to Chumley Warners at Birkdale who shipped out their friers, north sea fish and hearty fish and chip technique from Yorkshire to corner the local ex-pat market here.

    • A couple of fish posts for you to laugh at over on my other blog. Although Brid doesn’t come into it, the plaice (on the second link) was bought in Scarborough.

      My partner has now started reminiscing about buying huge bags of chips in milk bars. I need to stop reading our your comments/blog posts. We’re now into a big-time critique of that vile gravy they used to/maybe still do slop all over chips. Gorilla snot is the latest description. I digress – the fish posts:

      http://wp.me/p22GQH-lS

      http://wp.me/p22GQH-a1

  25. I don’t do Gravy at all, ever, used to freak my Mother-in-Law out that I ate sunday roast ‘dry’!! I do remember the chip gravy though yeuk! you can get mushy peas out here and bizarrely, packets, yes you read that right, packets of Yorkshire Pudding mix. That would be flour would it? I don’t know any self respecting Yorkshire person that makes Yorkshire puddings from a packet, what is that all about???! do you get any weird ex-pat fodder on the shelves in Gib? P.S just noticed Le Clown up there, gee he puts himself about a bit doesn’t he? :) BTW how long do you think the hubby will let us keep up the Methuselah gag?!

    • I do gravy, but only mine, or in the past my mother’s. My mother-in-law made bisto gravy, salty as hell and vile, but she never could cook. *Blush* I’ve never made Yorkshire pudding in my life. I used to like it with currents in. Part of my past that I enjoyed but not part of my present. So no packet puds either. I reckon the packet stuff will have some sort of raising agent, whereas my mum used flour, water/milk and an egg.

      We don’t need weird ex-pat fodder. It’s all at Morrisons here in Gib anyway. One of their most successful branches. When Morries took over Safeway they were going to get rid of this irritating shop at the end of Spain – until they looked at the figures. People come from all over the Iberian peninsula to shop here.

      LC doesn’t put himself anywhere near me these days and vice versa. He was pulling one of his crowd/comment increasing stunts saying that commenters would get a load of increased traffic so I naughtily and rebelliously pointed out the only one getting anything out of it was him. I got a really snotty email from him accusing me of trolling. It’s a longer story but that will do. Our paths no longer cross. Hell, people argue with me on this blog and on Clouds (more so over there as it is more ranty and controversial) I don’t send them emails accusing them of trolling.

      He’s pretty easy going (partner not Eric), so he won’t care either way, which sort of takes the fun out of it. He’s also only three years older than me, which must make me Mrs Noah or whoever – I’m not up on the bible.

  26. Hi from Panama. Thanks for reading my blog on learning Spanish and this year Panama. Next year is Spain for six months. I just read one of your posts on the border run – love it!! So happy to find you. I am not too familiar with the blog world (if that makes sense) but find it is an interesting group when I do look.

    • HI from Gibraltar. Thanks for the comment. I follow a few Spanish/america latina blogs, for obvious reasons, and I thought yours looked particularly interesting. I’ve written a couple of posts on speaking Spanish, but they were years ago. You would need to do a search with something complicated like ‘Spanish’. I do sometimes mix my language on the blog, some of my readers speak Spanish anyway, and we mix it a lot at home. I must do another language post at some point. Someone once wrote they had learned more from a few of my posts than in x years at school.

      Where are you going to in Spain? Not Madrid I hope. Not that there is anything wrong with it, but I am in love with Andalucía so it always gets my vote.

      • Hi, I have an opportunity to rent an apartment in Benidorm/Finistrat. I am there only because I know the landlord & it gives me a base in Spain. No idea what it is like as an area but I know I can make it work. Do you know the area?

        • One of the few places on the med coast I haven’t been. High rise holiday resort, but there is nothing wrong with that. So is Torremolinos and I really like that.

          You should be able to negotiate a very cheap rental at the moment. In our area you can get decent for three or four hundred euros a month.

          I’m a fan of Andalucía so that’s where I would recommend but if you are happy with Benidorm I’m sure it will be fine. Spain is Spain. I’ll try and add a link about Benidorm from another blog later.

    • The short answer is pissed off. But you get used to Spain messing around, it’s not something new. The proposed a congestion charge a couple of years ago and even started building the toll booths, but that one got kicked out.

      I’ll write about it when I can be bothered!! Thanks for thinking of us poor victimised Gibbos. Shame Spain can’t put as much effort into sorting out it’s economy, oh wait perhaps this is the proposed solution?? Gib can bail out Spain.

  27. I never knowingly met a real journalist and I am very impressed with your bio, although the way you assemble words would give you away.
    I really do appreciate good writing and enjoy reading your blog and will follow.
    It is no surprise that I am neither a journalist or a writer by any means so, at times, you may have to read between the lines to get my meaning, but I feel that I have something to say and do the best I can.
    You are supreme and I wish you well.

  28. Hi there,

    I recently came across your roughseasinthemed blog and was wondering if there were any sponsored post opportunities available? I represent a number of senior living, gardening and travel clients who are looking to sponsor posts with a contextual link in the text itself.

    Let me know if that’s something you’d be interested in, or if you have any similar alternatives and we can discuss further and make arrangements.

    You can contact me on James.Dart@accordgroup.co.uk.

    Look forward to hearing back from you.

    Regards,

    James

  29. I’ve been trolling around on your blogs since you left your comments on the Boyz blog this morning. Lots of great stuff to read and think about. I still do FB, but mostly just to see what is happening with the people and puppers I care about. Their comments were a huge comfort when Jakey died. In one of your posts I just read, you say thank you for Bang and Olafson. When a FB friend in Italy did the drawing of Jake the Weatherdog at the Bridge which I just added to the blog,, I didn’t know what those things in the center of the drawing were… and he explained so now I am au courant, and perhaps you will take a second look. I’ll be checking in on Pippa and on Snowy, and am happy to reconnect with you! I know it’s not Thanksgiving time in Gib and Spain, but since it is here, I’m sending you thankful thoughts for the good friendships our dogs enable. (Enable in the most positive sense!) Joan

    • Hi JH and Joan
      I always appreciate it when a blogger person takes the time to comment on WordPress because I know what a pain it is commenting when it is not the blog host you use. It reminds me of the days when Windows and AppleMac were incompatible.

      And while you brought sad news with you (as did another friend on Pippa’s blog) I did appreciate you taking the time to tell me, you know how fond I am/was of your wirey boyz.

      I will check out the weather drawing again, I was too busy reading the text to look at it in detail.

      My blogs are pretty much what they were on blogger, although the content may have changed slightly. Ironically on wordpress I do get a lot more commenters on my blog, while Pippa gets a lot less :D Dogbloggers on WP don’t seem quite so friendly :( but the people are. Horses for courses. And I do enjoy the dialogue. My readership is mainly my age, ie 50s, give or take a few years either way, and includes quite a few Brit expats. I do write about the situation in Gib fairly often (ie Spanish sabre rattling) and just whatever else is going on in life really. At the moment I’m still getting my head around being back in Gib after three months in Spain.

      Thanks again for commenting on Snowy’s post/Pippa’s blog. You’re right, it’s good to reconnect, and your good wishes for Thanksgiving are very much appreciated.

      K

  30. Hi, I have just found your blog and have been reading several of your posts. I love the honesty in them and your writing style. Having been blogging only since June I am always looking out for interesting blogs that not only I will enjoy reading but can learn from as well. I think yours will definitely fall into this category.
    I am a self confessed bibliophile, who always has a book (and now an e-reader for my sins) with me wherever I go and a part-time traveller always interested in new places to explore. I started writing because it has always been something I wanted to try and my husband was sick if me saying “someday”!

    Looking forward to reading more from you in 2014! :)

  31. Hey there! You started following my blog so I wanted to check out your blog and say, “Hi!” I’m excited to hear that the one thing you have a passion for is animals and animal rights. In my opinion, you selected wisely! Great blog – love your olive pate recipe. It’s a pleasure to e-meet you! Celeste :)

    • Hi Celeste. I follow a number of vegan blogs, mainly for inspiration, a feeling that I’m not alone, and to read about peoples’ different experiences.

      We flit between being vegan and vegetarian, my partner tends to like butter and (veg) cheese, so I will use those for him from time to time. If we had decent substitutes I wouldn’t use them, but he is allergic to most spreads and we haven’t found any decent vegan cheese. I suspect you have far more choice your way.

      But the rest of our lifestyle is pretty vegan. I chucked out my silk shirts years ago, although I couldn’t bear to get rid of my warm wool pullies and coats. But at least I don’t buy new ones. For footwear, I use a UK company – Ethical Wares. Good quality products and very sound (the people, as well as their shoes/boots/etc). The other one that I have also used over the years is Vegetarian shoes (also UK). A couple of years ago, I found a company called Bourgeois Boheme, based in London, and bought three pairs of fashion boots from them. Good design, (Marco Tozzi), look smart, exactly what I wanted. But I’ve worn them to death so they haven’t lasted too long! There are good non-leather products out there, and I don’t find that aspect of the lifestyle difficult.

      Post here about ethical wares, which apparently has US stockists

      http://wp.me/p1XwsS-ZV

      What else, oh yes, like you we started for health reasons, not that there was anything wrong with us that we knew about, we just thought we were eating too much meat, and then we just continued down the road, as you do. And our reasons became ethical, rather than selfish. So there you go, a quick summary of 25+ years :D

      • Thanks for your thoughtful response! My husband and I rarely eat vegan cheese. The most popular brand I’m familiar with is Daiya. It’s not bad tasting, but because it’s processed and has oil I don’t think of it as a ‘health food.’ My husband and I loosely follow The Engine 2 Diet popularized by Rip Esselstyn, and it doesn’t allow for extracted oils. It’s not that we don’t eat oils at all, we just get them through whole foods like avocado and nuts. I’m the first to admit that we’re not perfect, but we try to stick to the diet as much as possible at home. Eating out is a different ball game! One of my favorite vegan restaurants is LA Vegan Crepes, and they use a lot of Daiya cheese in their meals.

        Anywho, I’m so glad we’ve connected! Celeste :)

        • I’ve read about Daiya but never seen it. The vegan cheese we have encountered has been less than impressive, unlike other products for example VegiDeli (Redwood) slices. I find it slightly annoying that there is – relatively – so much vegetarian produce around, and so little vegan. Why is it so difficult to cut out eggs and dairy? Vegetarians can eat vegan produce but not the other way round. I am also amazed at the people I see in the supermarket picking up veg*n items. I know the percentage of veg*n people is low so why are all these customers taking MY food? :D

          I think the oil issue is a biggy. The only oil I use for cooking is Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I buy it in 5 litre containers, cost around 12-20 euros depending on the day and the offers. Otherwise I try and avoid refined oils, and like you, try to get a balance of food from a varied diet. I don’t follow anything specific, but there again, I’ve had chance to refine what I eat over many years. Starting off, I did rely very much on a couple of books.

          Thanks Celeste

  32. Dear Rough Seas,
    I am flying to Gib tomorrow, returning to East Midlands on Wednesday. I am researching a travel article on Gibraltar but also really want to get under the skin of the locals and their views of some of the expat culture of the island. I’ve seen much of the bucket and spade/Channel 5 side of life but was wondering if there was an undiscovered (to outsiders) social scene that could shed some light on different types of Gibraltar residents-whether that’s an expat-focused one or a non-expat focused one… Would you be able to get in touch as your blog is really interesting and I think you’re likely to have some helpful insights into the above.
    kind regards
    Andrew Picknell

  33. Hi Rough Seas in the Med,
    I’ve just had two of my short stories published in an anthology and wondered if you would review the book on your blog?
    It’s called ‘The Milk of Female Kindness’ and includes short fiction, poetry, art, memoir and medical writing on the theme of honest motherhood. Some of the writers have recently given birth, others are grandmothers. Some, like me, are childless; my writing is inspired by memories of my own mother. Some of the pieces will make you smile, others are heartbreaking.

    I’d be very happy to send you an e-book or hard copy, or some sample stories.
    Best wishes and thanks,
    Sandra @ http://www.sandradanby.com/

      • You’re welcome. Let us not forget that to-day’s French Bretagne was invaded/colonized by Brittons from Wales and Cornwall around the 6th century AD. Which is why breton, welsh, gaelic are very close languages.
        Take care
        “Brian”

  34. Hey — just wanted to stop by and thank you for your comment on my last post. Wasn’t meaning to ignore you. Just don’t want encourage further dialog about age. My blog gets a lot of exposure, and I experienced cyber fraud/identity theft which put the perpetrator in prison for close to a decade. I don’t want to give out too much personal information, e.g., age and last name on my blog, if you get my drift. I didn’t think it was such a big deal being shared with you, somewhat hidden in your blog’s comments.

    • Aw sorry about that. No worries about that. It was just chat. You prob pip me on the age though as I said I was late June. Can’t believe I forgot how old I was (n’t)

      Sorry to hear about all that crap. Not had an easy life have you :(

  35. Impressive page. Ought to catch the eye of a few writers-in-progress.
    Had pieced together some this from posts and comments.
    Dog now lunging at window (no doubt wanting to run have snacks in Gib with Pippa and Snowy – rain all week and we need to dart out again while there’s a break..wait, let’s say “lull”…don’t want to encourage any sort of breaks after your experience.)

    • Thanks. It’s easy to let things slip. I’d not mentioned Snows on here, so I thought I’d go for a total revamp. And as I use the blog as a point of reference, it seemed sensible to make my about page experience-based.

      It doesn’t take too long to work out I have two dogs, a partner and live in Gib and Spain, so I left out that riveting personal info.

      Treats were bought this week, so Molly is more than welcome to pop over and share – no rain here.

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