Tessa's Tête-à-Tête
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Recent Posts:
September 2005


Battle of Britain

Fertility Treatment

The Plumber's Tale of Woe

Learning to Read and Write

Bureaucracy Gone Mad

What is Really Happening in New Orleans

Hurricane Katrina

The Tooth Fairy Forgot to Come!!!

August 2005

More Surgery!"

How I Met Michael Rennie (1909-1971)

"The Sixth Lamentation" - An Excellent Book

French Onions

Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)

I'm Recovering Well

Well, I'm Glad That's Over!

Just Me Prattling

The Russian Mini-Submarine

Amazing Animals: The Sturgeon

The Tower Subway

Surgical Pre-Assessment

July 2005

The Coal Delivery

Spyware and Anti-spyware"

Getting Enough Sleep?

An Insidious Cancer

Americans First on the Moon

"The Lion King"

Update on my Biopsy

Have I had my Head Buried in the Sand?


Animal Intelligence

Fl./Lt. Dennis G. Hornsey, D.F.C.

The English Language

London Bombs

Marriage Advice?

My Biopsy

A Message for the World's Leaders

June 2005


A 'Perfect' Day

Amazing Animals: The Emperor Penguin

Crowned on this Day in 1509

A Sweet for a Special Occasion

King Solomon's Mines

Father's Day

Tiger, Tiger....


Cockroaches and Human Fertility

World's Best Character Actor

Computer Decisions

Food for Thought


World Ocean Day

Daft as a Brush (or Two)

Douglas Jennings, RAF Evader During WW II

Lord of the Rings

Driving Me Mad

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Tuesday, 27 July 2004
Old Browsers (and I don't mean me!)
Topic: Web Design
Came across a website called on which you can view a page as it appears on various old browsers. Ugh! Virtually all of my pages were a real mess! Very old browsers don't read style sheets at all and it appears that Netscape 4 can't read internal style sheets on a page. So, I am now linking my pages to the main style sheet plus another one specific to that page. (Will have to tidy that up when I have time.) Also, my table backgrounds don't show up. That means that a dark page background makes the text completely unreadable. How many people still have old browsers?

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Wednesday, 21 July 2004
Happy Birthday!
Topic: Grandchildren
The twins were 6 years old today! Took their presents over - they were very excited and very pleased to get some money, too. They are both saving up for special toys they want!

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Thursday, 8 July 2004
Topic: My Web Pages
shockHad a shock on Monday (hopping mad, too!). Found a webpage which had copied all of my words from my first Tribute page and from the story of the Traitor, several family photographs had been taken as well. It all looked particularly awful, too. Why? Well, he had not copied my external style sheet information - probably didn't know how to. I followed his link back to his personal pages and found he had listed a number of pages about people with his family name! All copied direct from the original sources (which all had copyright notices). Two or three emails later, he agreed to remove the stolen content.

Earlier in the year, someone I was corresponding with also took family photographs from my site without asking. It is the 'without asking' that is hurtful. The result of this episode was to make me frantically update all my pages in early April with a JavaScript 'No right click' program. I know this won't stop anyone who is determined but it will put off some people. People should realise that a published web page has automatic copyright, just as a published book does. Downloading an article for research or to read later is one thing but, if you find something you would like to include in your own website, you should ALWAYS ask permission first and, if permission is granted, give the source the appropriate credit. After all, would you think of visiting your local library, photocopying entire pages from various books, putting them together and then publishing the result as 'your' very own book?

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Saturday, 3 July 2004
The Twins' Replies to the Tooth Fairy
Topic: Grandchildren
Yesterday morning, I was thinking about Elliot's tooth and I thought it would be great fun if the children received emails from the "Tooth Fairy". I searched the Internet. Found a poem about the Tooth Fairy, found a picture somewhere else (which I admit I nicked!). Put it all together for Elliot with music. Decided to use the same picture with a letter from the Tooth Fairy for Stephanie: "Congratulations Stephanie. You have a loose tooth!.....". Sent them off. Hopefully, they would get them before they went to bed. Well, they did. WOW! Were they a success. I think they went to bed rather late again last night - two late nights in a row, good job it is the weekend!

Here is Elliot's reply: (dictated to Mummy)
Thank you for the money. I was excited when my tooth was coming out and Grandpa pulled my tooth out and I was very brave and I didn't cry. Then Grandma took a photo of me. What time did you come last night? Did you come at 10 o'clock? I was in bed at 9 o'clock. I was very tired so I didn't want to stay up. My sister called Stephanie is a chatterbox and when I want to go to sleep she always chatters to me and I wish I could have seen you. Next time are we allowed to leave you a little present? I told people my tooth came out and I am very pleased. When my tooth came out my tongue could touch the gap and it felt very funny. Thank you for your e-mail.
Lots of love from Elliot xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
I hope you have a nice time at your house. Where have you put my tooth?

Here is Stephanie's reply: (also dictated to Mummy)
Thank you for not leaving me out and I'll put my tooth when it falls out in a tin foil with salt and it will be in the same place as Elliot's. What do you make with the teeth? Do you make houses and do you make furniture? Do you make beds out of teeth? Do you only take good teeth or do you take good and bad teeth? I have a fairy watch so I can remember you all the time and do you have a name? I like your letter and I feel happy about you and I love you so much. I'll never forget you. I won't be sad if you don't reply because I know you are very busy.
Love from Stephanie

My daughter's reply: You made their day sending those e-mails. Stephanie in particular is so happy and they both said to me 'so they really are real'. they 100% believe that your e-mails came directly from the tooth fairy and asked questions like 'how does she know my name, will the computer know where to send the reply'? Stephanie has been looking out of her window...

They wanted to reply because they were so pleased? All from them (although I changed some of the grammar). I did say that the Tooth Fairy may not have time to reply so don't get upset and they were fine with that.

The Tooth Fairy did find some time to reply. Seems Grandmothers have lots of different purposes in life!

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Thursday, 1 July 2004
The Tooth Fairy will be coming!
Topic: Grandchildren
Elliot looking really happy and showing his new 'gap' where his tooth came outElliot's first loose tooth was getting really wobbly. So, Grandpa asked him if he wanted him to see if it would come out today. He did! Elliot wiggled it himself for a while and then Grandpa got a tissue and... out it came. One perfect small white tooth. Elliot looked amazed and then delighted. Excitedly, he announced: "The Tooth Fairy will be coming tonight"! Stephanie had a loose tooth also but not anywhere near loose enough to come out. I could see she was every so slightly jealous! Grandpa got some warm boiled water and put a pinch of salt in it for Elliot to rinse his mouth. He was so happy he didn't mind at all. I decided to take a photograph so that I could send it to Uncle David.

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Wednesday, 30 June 2004
Unwanted Nuisance Calls
Topic: Miscellanea
I smile now every time the telephone rings! I was SO fed up with all the marketing calls we were getting. First it was junk mail, then spam emails, and then intrusive, time wasting telephone calls. It seemed like hundreds of them every week! I registered with the "Telephone Preference Service" but it takes a while and depends on business using their 'don't call' lists. I could have had 'caller display', but why should I have to pay to know that 98% of my calls are unsolicited marketing calls? Our old analogue answering maching had packed up about three months ago and I had not been able to find a replacement. So, I was using British Telecom's free answer service for when I was on line or out of the house. I even thought of buying a new telephone. Then last Saturday, when I was not even looking, there it was, a stand alone digital answering machine sitting on the supermarket shelf. It gives us great satisfaction to hear it saying, "Thank you for calling"!

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Monday, 21 June 2004
Father's Day
Topic: Family Days Out
A view of Hampton Court Palace from the gardensYesterday was Father's Day - my son's first. We all decided to have a day out and meet at Hampton Court Palace in Surrey. The original palace belonged to Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, chief minister to Henry VIII, who lived in it for eleven years. He added hunting lodges for the King but eventually he was forced to hand the palace over to King Henry VIII in 1525. I went there as a child but the only real memory I had was of seeing the famous old grapevine. I went again when my children were around five and six with my sister - on that occasion we tried getting lost in the maze but didn't go into the Palace. (The maze was planted in 1690 and is 2 miles long, so you need plenty of time!) We had a lovely day together wandering round the gardens and the Palace, despite a drop of rain in the afternoon. We just managed to see everything and, because of Baby Andrew's pushchair, we were privileged to use the lift instead of climbing all the stairs to view Henry VIII's state apartments! Afterwards, we all visited my sister, who lives very near to Hampton Court.

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Tuesday, 8 June 2004
Zone Alarm
Topic: Computer
Delighted with the free version of Zone Alarm, which my son suggested I get. Amazing to see how many access attempts are being blocked! Went to a site called Shields Up yesterday, which I had bookmarked ages ago. I remember failing all the tests miserably. Anyway, this time, the results stated:

"Your system has achieved a perfect "TruStealth" rating. Not a single packet solicited or otherwise was received from your system as a result of our security probing tests. Your system ignored and refused to reply to repeated Pings (ICMP Echo Requests). From the standpoint of the passing probes of any hacker, this machine does not exist on the Internet. Some questionable personal security systems expose their users by attempting to "counter-probe the prober", thus revealing themselves. But your system wisely remained silent in every way. Very nice."

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Sunday, 23 May 2004
All Was Not Lost!
Topic: Computer
Been experiencing a problem or two with the new external drive/old drive. I had done a virus check as a precaution a while back. Decided to do a scan disk of E drive and lots of errors were found and some invisible files and folders were restored. Wish I had thought of doing that at the start - it would have saved me lots of time searching for copies of programs on the Internet, downloading a new Windows Media Player, etc., etc.! Pleased to get back all my fonts, games, screensavers and unzipped folders, which have all reappeared.

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

Monday, 17 May 2004
How Daft Can You Be?
Topic: Computer
Solved the lack of colour in toolbars, scrollbars and 3d objects! First, I rediscovered how to customise the display properties then, eventually, it dawned on me that I had actually installed a 'Theme' some three years ago. I had completely forgotten about it and I feel particularly daft as I had carefully matched the Windows Media Player embedded in one of my old pages with that colour not realising that it was a 'local' colour scheme. Messed up my Encarta 2001. I had copied all the files over from the old external drive and stupidly deleted them. I must have left something behind though because, when I next wanted to use Encarta, the program reinstalled from the CD and the result is I have lost all of the updates I had downloaded.

Posted by Noviomagus at 00:01 BST Post Comment | Permalink

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