Hello everyone

This is a post of two halves.  One half is the usual light-hearted look at clothes, which may, or may not, suit the older woman.  And the second half is probably not entirely appropriate to this blog, but what the heck, live dangerously and say what you feel is how I see it, and you know what Helen Mirren would say if you don’t like it!

Ok, well, it’s the last day of the month and time to tell you about film night, which was a great success.  We showed a Japanese film, Departures, which gave a fascinating insight into another culture’s view of death, and the preparation of the body before it goes into the coffin.  Now, you’d think that this subject wouldn’t be a pleasant one, so it wouldn’t be a good experience for the audience, would it?  Au contraire.  We’re into our fourth season and Departures is the second most popular film we’ve shown ever.  If you haven’t seen it, do give it a go as this serious subject has humour, laughter, tears, sadness, joy and an uplifting ending.  Some left saying it was the best film they’d ever seen.  Hmm, it’ll be difficult to top that, but that’s a good problem!

It was a busy night, which needed a bit of preparation as we had three speakers, including our mayor, to open our new equipment.  (Any of you local to me, why not give it a try as we have a big screen and great sound.)  So, I just pulled out a skirt bought earlier this year in the January sales, and wore it with the charity shop boots bought recently.


So this is the second half of the post, OK, what the photo doesn’t show is that I’ve got a bad cold, which started with a sore throat and laryngitis.  Really it’s nothing.  I’m keeping warm, eating nourishing food, and taking sufficient fluids for this to be a short-lived inconvenience.   But, what if I couldn’t get warmth or regular food, or a time and a place for a cup of tea, or a hot lemon and honey before I go to my bed?  What if I didn’t have a home?

Yes, I am thinking of the homeless here in the UK, but I’m also thinking of the millions in camps near Syria, and also those in Calais, which is a cold, wet swamp, not a camp.  And the hundreds and thousands crossing Europe – there is so much hardship, such suffering.  We are blessed to have a home, and lucky to be born somewhere safe.

I have a friend who lives in Stockholm, and she’s helping with the flow of refugees, I kind of envy her opportunity to be hands-on.  What can we do in countries that aren’t receiving the biggest movement of people since the Second World War?  Ok, we can donate, as charities who are hands-on really do need our money, and we can correct the misinformation that seems to be everywhere (don’t read certain newspapers or below-the-line comments, such a depressing experience).  So, over Christmas I shall be setting up another blog where I’ll be writing (not every week, but whenever) about more difficult, political subjects such as migration, refugees versus economic migrants, and more local irritations such as our beloved National Health Service and its evisceration by our current (and previous) politicians – and so on!

I won’t talk about this again (on this blog) but it is the crisis of our time, and I can’t ignore it.

Keep warm and well

With love

Penny, the frugalfashionshopper



10 thoughts on “Film night outfit – November 2015 and some other thoughts on things happening today

  • 30th November 2015 at 1:49 pm

    Lovely outfit Penny. Hoping your cold goes away soon.

    • 1st December 2015 at 8:01 am

      Thank you so much – yes, it was good to get the skirt out and wear it again!

  • 30th November 2015 at 3:24 pm

    Love the skirt! I will watch for it to reappear in another styling. So sorry you are not feeling well. If I didn’t live across the pond, I would bring you some of my magical homemade chicken soup.

    • 1st December 2015 at 8:03 am

      Ah, thank you so much and I’ve often wondered about this famous chicken soup! Yesterday I made a vegetable and butterbean stew which tasted good and was warming and nourishing. Might try a fish curry tonight x

  • 30th November 2015 at 4:30 pm

    Thank you Penny, x2.
    I love the sound of ‘Departures’ and have discovered it is available on DVD. Shall invest!
    Thanks also for bravely deciding to respond to some of life’s tougher issues. I applaud you, and look forward to reading your thoughts.

    • 1st December 2015 at 8:05 am

      Departures is such a good film in every way – beautifully shot and I think what does it is the script – absolutely a masterpiece. The new blog will be called ‘My Other Blog’ (!) I’ll let you know when it’s up and running – thank you for your interest x

  • 30th November 2015 at 5:13 pm

    Dear Penny,
    First, let me say I love your photos and your consistent urging of us to think twice about clothes spending and to invest instead in recycling our clothes while satisfying an urge to be stylish according to our own concept of what that means.

    I would like to say you are not courageous to speak out about the present Syrian crisis, but I know it does take courage. I think most women of our age would be supportive of your views, having the perspective of a certain number of years and acquired knowledge. Here, in North America, it is heart-scalding to hear some of the attitudes, and without malice, I can say mostly from below our border, especially knowing it originates from the Christian Right. But some Canadians, too, resist giving entrance to refugees, out of self interest. It is confounding. I would very much like to be part of your second blog, as I am interested in how England is responding–and what the majority of English are saying. BBC World does not report on that aspect of the crisis.

    With thanks for both sides of your current post,

    • 1st December 2015 at 8:32 am

      Thank you for liking both parts of the post, Margaret. Yes, it is the crisis of our time – at the moment the UK is teetering on the edge of a decision to join the US and France in bombing Syria. I am not keen, as are a huge chunk of Brits. I can hear my soldier (Indian Army) father saying you cannot win by just bombing, it needs troops on the ground. And months of bombing has not stopped outrages in France and elsewhere. How will bombing make us safer? That’s a nonsense statement from our Prime Minister as intelligence makes us safer plus an inclusive society that brings everyone together. Which I hate to say the French are not good at as there is no such thing there as multi-culturalsim – in France you must be French. This has led to ghettos and, let’s be blunt the tragedy in Paris had mainly French born gunmen slaughtering many Muslims amongst the dead. Awful. London, I would say it is a huge multi-culural mix and all the better for it – but outside London and usually in the poorer parts there are many who hate all immigrants.

      Ah yes, the refugees. Why so many now, say the sceptics? Umm, there’s a war on….. Funnily enough, unlike the States, here in the UK the church-going are more likely to be supportive of refugees (of all faiths) and the refugee crisis. But still, many people say why are they all men (increasingly not, btw), and worse, no way are they refugees they’re economic migrants, or even worse, why didn’t they stay to fight, and oh worse than that are some comments below the line – just awful things are said.

      The people I feel sorry for are those who have turned up in northern France wanting to come to England – the only way they can come is illegally. We are refusing to take any of these people (we will take 20,000 over 5 years from the camps not Europe). Here is an article by someone I trust on conditions in the north of France – it’s heart-breaking reading

      But what fascinates me is tiny Sweden taking tens of thousands in just a few months and Germany has taken nearly a million in one year – just amazing. Now what I want to do is i) get my facts right and ii) ask questions. Why is Germany taking so many? How many can we (Europe) take? What is the limit? What are the causes of this mass movement? What are the consequences of all these interventions? What’s Saudi Arabia doing – hmm? Etc

      What I can’t abide is the media is so superficial – and we are not getting the whole picture – if that is even possible.

      Thank you for your interest, Margaret, I’ll let you know when this other blog – called ‘My Other Blog’ (!) is set up.

  • 30th November 2015 at 7:37 pm

    To the second part of your blog I say ‘good for you’. I look forward to hearing your views on the more ‘difficult’ and political subjects. Our age is a wonderful thing – we have loved and lost, felt and seen so much.
    I love fashion – it is what drew me to your blog in the first place but to sail through life without a developing social conscience is unbelievable.
    I look forward, Penny, to hearing your thoughts. Is it my age – or the age we live in – that I feel more and more frustrated about the things I’m seeing happening in our world?
    And – I can’t ignore it either. I look forward to your blog(s).

    • 1st December 2015 at 8:42 am

      Thank you so much Kathy, yes, just because we love fashion doesn’t mean we don’t have other interests and thoughts on current affairs. The thing is the media is so superficial – what is actually happening, what is news, anyway? I want to get some facts, if that’s possible, and ask questions. I’ll let you know when ‘My Other Blog’ is up and running!

      Thank you again.

Comments are closed.