Can you keep a secret?

I was reading a few blogs over the last few days trying to get a bit of an idea of what people like to blog about because I’m new to this game. So I came across one chap’s blog and he was posting about some treats he really liked from back in the 1990s. They were called PB crisps and made by Planters. I have to admit I don’t remember these snacks on sale here in Ireland, in fact they probably were not as Planters from my memory were not a big seller here in Ireland. I do remember Planters peanuts and even then KP and Manhatten would have been the biggest seller of peanuts in these parts. But it got me thinking about snacks and chocolate bars that used to be very popular but for some reason were taken off the market. To some people          they have cult status and it got me thinking about a chocolate bar that was a big hitter here in Ireland and Britain. It was called a Cadbury’s secret bar and boy these bars were fine. Many times me and my friends have talked about this sumptuous treat which completely disappeared from the shops a long  long time ago. Everybody that remembers this bar will testify that it was THE finest chocolate bar ever made. I seem to remember when it was available most people were raving about them.

And so here it is, the Cadbury’s secret bar. It was a thick milk chocolate outer bar that resembled a shredded wheat biscuit in that it was covered with lots and lots of thin lattice swirls. After you bit through the generous thickness of smooth Cadbury milk chocolate (GOD WHY DOES CADBURY AND BLOG KEEP GETTING UNDERLINED AS MISSPELLINGS?) you reached the inner core that contained the real treat. It was a delicious, smooth, whipped centre of the same consistency as thick mousse. Very like a walnut whip in it’s texture. Oh the memory is coming back now mmmmm. It was wrapped in a golden wrapper with the word secret printed in purple and this colouring definitely had something to do with the decadency of the bar itself. In fact from doing a google search, I was able to find I wasn’t alone here. There are quite a number of forums both past and present championing the secrets bar. There is even a Wikipedia page dedicated to this bar and many people have called for it to be brought back. Kind of like the mission to bring back the whispa bar a number of years ago. If you search Youtube you will even find a number of people have been good enough to go out of their way to upload it. And it brought back great memories to see this ad again. It was filmed on a train in the 1940s about to depart a station with a glamourous lady being asked to keep a secret of some sort from some gentlemen. Both the ad and the bar and it’s wrapper were all in keeping with an idea of classiness.

So this is for all those out there who remember the secret bar or anybody who remembers their own favourite treat from yesterday and wonders why it was taken from the shelves, I hope it brings back good memories. Certainly the Cadbury’s secret bar was a good seller, people remember with fondness, and there are definitely lots of people calling for it to be returned so maybe this can be the start of a campaign to get it returned to it’s rightful place. I hope this post was of interest to anybody who happens to come by and especially to the head man from Cadbury. We want our secret and yes we can keep one!

A Father’s Son

A blog post I was just reading of which I stumbled upon because he was actually my first follower (thank you) since I started blogging a week ago got me thinking and reminiscing about my late Father. The post in question was about the total number of American war dead since it’s first battle. I am an avid conflict historian and grew up on weekly chats my Father and Uncles would have in earnest about the second World War. My uncle would tell tales of the heroics of the Americans and listen about the great battles that were fought without truly understanding the nitty-gritty, I was only about 9 after all. On the other hand My Father would counterbalance the argument with the British side of the story telling how brave this little nation was and how enamoured in general he was about the achievements of this small island nation.

Now many would think what would an honest Irishman be doing talking about the English in glowing terms. They had been despised for centuries on these shores and there is still a great deal of simmering hatred. And the reason was this. Besides from the well known fact that up to 50,000 Irish men took up arms in support of Britain in the great war and dedicated their lives in doing so, many young Irishmen in the 60s looking for work, adventure a chance to see what’s past this island’s shores decided to join the British army and in particular the Irish guards. My Father always kept this great big chest under his bed and to a young boy my imagination was in overdrive. Finally one day he opened it and what a treasure it was. It contained photos of him standing to attention at Salisbury barracks. There were close up personal photos of him in his faultless, proud, shiny and immaculate uniform. My dad was a soldier! I was purring with pride. He then showed me his medals he won, nothing too grand but as grand as can be to him I’m sure. He showed me his shrapnel wounds were he was hit while on tail end charley. But the greatest of them all were some photos of him and his squadron crawling through the vegetation (probably staged but do I care?) fully equipped with big machine gun and belts of high calibre bullets slung over shoulder complete with camouflage face paint  looking like something from a Rambo movie. These memories I cherished dearly and it was then I realised why my Father had nothing but glowing words for the British, their empire, their inventions, their sports that they gave the world, especially football, their industrial heritage and it rubbed off on me. I have nothing but admiration for what an island of such small proportions was able to give to this modern world we live in, mostly the industrial revolution. And so it was 6 years ago as my Father was terminally ill in hospital. I ached in the knowledge we would lose him sooner rather than later. I looked on at him in his weakness and drug induced condition that made no sense when he tried to converse which was harrowing and I thought of that man I seen in the jungle in Borneo with the machine gun and bullets wrapped around him and thought how very very proud I was that this ill, weak man was once a man of such courage and spirit was leaving this world for good. I held his poor hand and prayed that he’d reach heaven safely. Now those memories that were contained in the big case of surprise and suspense are remembered and cherished now more than ever before.

Making it work.

To anybody, no matter how small who by chance happen to stumble upon this post I just have to share and tell the world how totally over the moon I feel right now. After months of thought and contemplation about whether I should start a blog or not, I finally dedicated myself to it and started off with some blogs that were different to each other in order to try not to place all my eggs in the one basket, try to appeal to different tastes as I have an interest in many things, some more than others. But I was getting really disillusioned and frustrated with it. And it was this. I was finding it very hard to cope with the vast amount of options, settings, themes, widgets and what most were for. If I’m honest I am a little impatient and was finding it tough trying to categorize my posts in a way that most other bloggers seem able to do. Finally! after days of trial and error I was able to work out how to put my posts into specific headings on my sidebar as it was really getting to me. I’ve only had a blog less than a week now and it seems to be taking shape for me. I’m sure most if not all had the same difficulties at the start of their blog career’s. To add to my newly found vigour and understanding I had my very first like when I discovered today that somebody went out of their way to read one of my posts and actually liked it. Couple that with the fact that my blog received 30 hits so far and 21 seemed to be today has really given me a boost. Pheew I just had to get that of my chest. If you have had the chance to read this I wonder if you were going through them same feelings when you were starting out. Now I’ve mastered what seemed to be a giant, unsolvable puzzle I think my next step is to add some photos and video (I’m sure this will be another big obstacle to overcome but Rome wasn’t built in a day). Lord I’m glad I have so many millions(potentially) of people to listen and share in my good fortune

heaven on earth

Of all the great places on this earth that I dream of visiting the one that constantly keeps coming up in my thoughts is Canada. I mean I know it has it’s own problems social deprivation and crime in the big cities and the notorious Vancouver east side and not to mention the mind numbing cold that engulfs the land in the winter. But on the plus side, the side I constantly dream of one day visiting is the unequalled natural beauty on offer. Those pristine pacific pine forests, the beautiful lakes and wilderness. The white water rapids in the Rockies, the historical native enclaves and then up north to the resourceful inuit people and all the while breathing what must be fresh air as crisp and clean as you can find. I could go on and on and on but I think most people what get what I mean, no wonder the French and British fought so hard to lay claim to this vast piece of land that promised so much and didn’t break it’s promise

Oh and there’s one final thing I would like to mention it’s that the US. seem to give those Canadians such a hard time (maybe there’s some more sinister underlying factor here I’m ignorantly unaware of). But I’d put money on it being just a national rivalry. Either ways I’ll dream my dream until one day I see this awesome land called Canada for myself