All Our Novembers

November 2014 and ready for Christmas in seasonal headwear. The red hats were gifts from someone who had a lot left over from a promotion. We were never too proud to accept a freebie.

November 2015 – Men in Sheds. Don’t blame me for the Health and Safety, I’m just the photographer. Nobody was actually blinded or set on fire, just in case you were wondering.

November 2016. The report from the Woodland Trust using the data we had gathered for them. We did do some useful stuff, apart from ll the fun.

Nest boxes in two different states of completion

November 2017, and Julia mobilised the MENCAP gardeners to start making nest boxes. One of the Men in Sheds cut the pieces for her and the gardeners put them together and decorated them. They were sold at the Christmas Fair to raise money for seed and a number of them have successfully raised families.


November 2018 and the dark nights allow me to take pictures of sunsets when I arrive home from work. There’s not much to say. I am now established as a shop assistant and am a regular at the Numismatic Society of Nottinghamshire. It looks like old age has caught up with me at last.


November 2019. We spend our Wednesday visiting a Garden Centre near Lincoln. We had tea and scones in what appeared to be a converted wartime hut and then I took pictures of a desolate lake. I thought you might prefer the tea and scone picture.


November 2020. One of our customers had a card like this saying “Clinically Exempt” which he used to claim he didn’t need to wear a mask. The cards were not official, they were sold by a charity. It cost me £2 to get this one, which I used to show to people who claimed they didn’t need to wear a mask, telling them that I did need them to wear a mask.  The customer paid £6.99 for his, buying from someone on eBay who was buying from the charity and then selling them on. Just a little Covid anecdote for you.


November 2021. The picture is a Scottish Communion Token from a collection we bought in the shop. They were used in the 19th Century to control who was considered suitable to take communion, which gave the church quite a lot of control over the lives of the parishioners. The Scottish side of my family left Annan in about 1870. Family history says it was to do with an argument in the Church. One of my relatives may well have handled this token. They settled in Blackburn, which was a cotton weaving boom town at that time.

The few pictures I now have shows just how my world has shrunk since Covid.

November 2022, Another shop picture. This is sometimes called a smuggler’s box, though I don’t think you would smuggle much in a hollowed out Cartwheel Tuppence. They are also said to have been used for smuggling messages by spies. Again, unlikely. It’s more likely to be someone showing off their skills with machine tools. Coin is dated 1797. They all are, so I don’t need a readable date. It’s so worn it was quite possibly not hollowed out until half a century later. I don’t think they did much smuggling then, and spying had advanced to use invisible ink by then.

November 2023. I’ve been poorly, so all the photos I have for November are the three Julia sent me from Cromer. I really must sort my life out.



12 thoughts on “All Our Novembers

  1. Clare Pooley

    I hope you feel better soon, Simon. My world has shrunk since Covid but recently Richard and I have been trying to get out more; or rather, we have been discussing how we ought to get out more and trying to think what we ought to do! We shopped for curtains for my mother in Lowestoft on Saturday and went to a funeral on Monday. It’s a start…

  2. tootlepedal

    Unless you are very lucky, or perhaps very rich, it is inevitable that your world shrinks as you get older. Apart from anything else, everything takes more time than it did and you simply can’t get so much in. I used to be able to go for a fifty mile bike ride in the morning and do something else in the afternoon. Now it takes me all my time just to get up in the morning . . . and it takes me a long time (and good weather) to cycle 50 miles. I am learning to live with it.

      1. tootlepedal

        It took me a couple of years to come to terms with how slow I was getting on my bike. I can enjoy a slow a slow pedal now though so it is possible to admit some things.

  3. Lavinia Ross

    That is a nice little run of history in hose photos, Simon. I hope you feel better soon, and can enjoy the holiday season coming up.

    It is Thanksgiving over here next week on the 23rd of November. The last farmers’ market is on November 22nd. I will be sticking up on winter squash, especially butternut. 🙂

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      What worries me about the photos is the way my world seems to have shrunk. I must do something about it. I should also start looking at squash recipes and dd them to our diet. Left to my own devices I tend to concentrate on carrots and parsnips. 🙂


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