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I feel very odd trapped stuck indoors on one of my favorite days of the year – Bonfire night. Unlike many old English traditions (like mischief night) it hasn’t been taken over and Americanised or turned into a marketing exercise. I’ve fond memories of childhood bonfire parties at home and also later in life in London when Lynn and I would attend one of the big organised displays. Our nearest, and the one we frequented most was just down the road at Alexandra Palace. We’d walk down there with friends and laden with mulled wine and snacks. Now, up here in Yorkshire Dawn and I have tended to have our own little displays and invite her parent over to join us. This year, all I can do is watch from the bedroom window, or listen to the bangs and whistles as I sit in the office typing this. It’s a bit of a damp squib, but then so’s the American Presidential election, which is moving forward at a glacial pace and looks certain to drag on for weeks as Trump and the right-wingers try and drag things out in the courts. Democracy is looking very fragile at the moment as the right-wing populists do everything they can to cling to power. One can only hope Biden spoils their plans.

I’ve not really paid attention to the stateside shenanigans as little’s happened and I’ve been too busy with writing and sorting out the latest tranche of eBay sales which has left me with no time for slide scanning. Hopefully, next week will be another matter after the final part of my round Britain trip for RAIL magazine goes off to the proof-readers and I get a break before I start the next article, which should give me time to scribble some words for pleasure and write-up a couple of blogs that I’ve been thinking about. After all, I’m not going anywhere for a while yet, and it’s not like I’ve got a plane to catch. I wish…!

With today being bonfire night the picture of the day rather chose itself – as you’ll see in a minute. A lot of play is made nowadays about how animals are terrified of fireworks and that they should be banned as a consequence. I’ve extremely mixed feelings about that. Yes, I’ve known some animals that are absolutely terrified. The family dog (Dori) was one, but then so was my mother in her later years. When it came to November 5th my mum would break out the Valium and give one half of a pill to herself and the other half to the dog!

Jet, our cat, is the opposite. In his younger days he’d go wandering off out to see what the noise was all about as he had that sort of nature. Now that he’s an old bugger he’s not the slightest bit interested, but that could be because he’s as deaf as post!

Ok, the picture of the day – you’ll see where I’ve been going now. I took this picture on New Years eve 2003 in Tangalle, Sri Lanka. The owner of the homestay we were lodging in had a party on the beach, which involved copious amounts of fireworks. Rather than running away and hiding one of the local mutts was fascinated by them and did its best to try and catch and eat them!

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