Sunday, 5th July 2020 – Visits to date: 44,836 – We climb mountains, along with beautiful singing from my daughter, Charlotte in Portugal (below): Thanks to David Parfitt, Puzzles Editor, and Times On-Line for their generous support for my venture in their weekly plug. See also our new App preview which is a work in progress. Check out my NEW Times2 Crossword Games Compendium + samples for my new App. With Bastille Day beckoning, I’ve just discovered that according to my grandfather’s history of the French Revolution by H. Morse Stephens, Balliol College, Oxford, Louis XVI was not guillotined but executed with the sword as was his right by his loyal executioner, Sanson! The Guillotine machine was introduced in the spring of 1793 whereas Louis died on the scaffold before the people at the Place de la Révolution at twenty minutes past ten on the morning of January 21st 1793! He goes on to say later that the first victim of the Guillotine was one Blanchelande, a former Governor, who met the machine’s fate on April 12th, after the Revolutionary Committee agreed its use on April 11th! He concludes: “A powerful instrument was thus created for securing peace at home by inspiring terror” Personally, I’m inclined to believe the historian! So much for your Royal Myths and Secrets, Lucy Worsley and the BBC! This should set the tongues wagging! – DA

Top 20 Countries:

1. Germany – Munich, Berlin, Bonn (top post)

2. USA – Boardman (second top post), Los Angeles

3. Ukraine – Kiev (second top post)

4. India – Pune (second top post)

5. UK – London (second top post)

6. Canada – St John’s NL (second top post)

7. Brazil – Rio (second top post)

8. Sweden – Stockholm (second top post)


9. France – 

10. Switzerland – 

11. Netherlands – 

12. Portugal –

13. Czech Republic – 

14. Australia – 

15. Vietnam – 

16. Russian Federation – 

17. Poland – 

18. Ireland – 

19. Tunisia – 

20. Bangladesh –


NEW FORMAT: Browsers featuring today: Chrome, Safari, Edge, Firefox, Opera, Internet Explorer, Yandex – Alongside witness my testimonial from my teaching days in China in happier times, at our multi-national language school and at the Banyan Tree Hotel where I taught English as well as Shakespeare! Also witness a fascinating article by my father (below) for Times News, the House Journal of Times Newspapers, February 1976 Edition – father was very much into code-breaking in his War years, and as usual, a master of understatement: 23rd out of an original field of 800 plus, wasn’t bad going! ‒ David Akenhead

Thank you all – Keep on truckin’! 

Looking on the bright side (and not new), Pimm’s No. 1 time in order! (8) OPTIMISM

Visiting Countries to date:

1. UK 2. USA 3. India 4. Germany 5. China 6. Canada 7. France 8. Russian Federation 9. SouthAfrica 10. Philippines 11. Spain 12. Ukraine 13. Netherlands 14. Poland 15.Turkey 16. Singapore 17.Pakistan 18. Australia 19. Ireland 20. Italy 21. Japan 22. Switzerland 23. Indonesia 24. Thailand 25. Portugal 26. Hungary 27. Romania 28. CzechRepublic 29. Brazil 30. Trinidad 31. Iran 32. Vietnam 33. Moldova 34. Sweden 35.Korea 36. Mexico 37. HongKong 38. Bulgaria 39. Jamaica 40Greece 41. SriLanka 42. Croatia 43. Malaysia 44. Cyprus 45. Jersey 46. Serbia 47. Bangladesh 48. Kenya 49. Nepal 50. Colombia 51. Lithuania52. Belgium 53. Finland 54. Israel 55. Taiwan 56. Uzbekistan 57. Norway 58.  Argentina 59. Austria 60. Egypt 61. Malta 62. Denmark 63. Latvia 64. CostaRica 65. Bahrain 66. Algeria 67. NewZealand 68. Luxembourg 69. Morocco 70. Nigeria 71.Azerbaijan 72. Guam 73. Myanmar 74. Slovakia 75. Belarus 76. Saudi Arabia 77. Seychelles 78. Iceland 79. Georgia(Russ.) 80. French Guiana 81. Kuwait82Oman 83. Qatar 84. Belgium 85. SaudiArabia 86. Barbados 87. Iraq 88. Fiji 89. Brunei90Ecuador 91. Honduras 92Mauritius 93. Mongolia 94. Rwanda 95. Virgin Is. (US) 96. Zimbabwe 97. Panama 98. Guernsey 99. Lesotho 100. Papua NewGuinea 101. Cambodia 102. Uganda 103. N.Mariana.Is 104. Bermuda 105. Syria 106. Monaco 107. Bosnia and Herzegovina 108. Zambia 109. Estonia 110. Burkina Faso 111. Lebanon 112. Lao Peoples Democratic Republic 113. Peru 114. United Arab Emirates 115. Palestine 116. Samoa 117. Tajikistan 118. Gibraltar 119. Réunion 120. Maldives 121. Liberia 122. CapeVerde 123. Ghana 124. StKitts/Nevis 125. Puerto Rico 126. Kazakhstan 127. Chile 128. Belize 129. Cambodia 130. Somalia 131. Venezuela 132. Albania 133. Tunisia, 134. Benin 135. Madagascar 136. French Afars and Issas 137. Is of Man 138. NewCaledonia 139. Turkmenistan 140. Bolivia 141. Senegal

142. Macedonia 143. Armenia 144. Myanmar


There has been a sea change on this website, such that I now defer to these wise words from a beacon of light in a troubled world:

“Come in I’ll give ya shelter, shelter from the storm” Bob Dylan, 17th September 1974

which sentiment I will henceforth pursue on this website and try to prove that we can move mountains if we still have a mind so to do, that precious commodity that needs a bit of nurturing especially now! I shall endeavour to do my utmost to oblige with a few timely prompts to remind me I’m not useless, yet!

We Never Say Die in this family, (a horse my father backed successfully once with Lester Piggott aboard to win the Epsom Derby back in 1954, an American bred colt and the first to win in 73 years and reminds me of a quote from my beloved son, James, when he was about to attempt to scale the heights of Vegas at the poker tables back in July 2009 in an interview for Bluff, Europe just before he ended up 9th in the World Series that same year! “The first time I played the Main Event, I lasted nine hours exactly; the second year was nine hours ten minutes, and the third year was nine hours 30 minutes, so I should make the final in about 400 years time.” Who Dares Wins! Ditto, my daughter, Charlotte, who I understand is singing her heart out in Oporto to lift spirits during Covid-19 with her lovely voice.) Bless them both! and leads me to a clue I dreamt up recently which appears to be popular.

With it, junior flying officer latching on to neutron star lost direction (7)

also, in an effort to make one or two vintage cryptic clues comprehensible to a modern reader I came up with this one which I thought fitted the bill . . .

Card-player’s choice, perhaps (5)

answers to:

… something she recorded last week, Charlotte’s new rendition of Ave Maria. Enjoy!

David Akenhead, 5th July 2020

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