Wednesday, 6th December, 2023 – Visits to date: 225,870 from 190 Countries. 31st October saw Israel, Tel Aviv, lead for the month with 1,196 Visits. Earlier San Mateo, California answered my support for war veterans along with Lachlan Murdoch on the UK Times, on 340 visits. Today Germany lead.
Monday 4th December began our Christmas competition for Edmund Akenhead’s Classic East African Collection. Winners receive a life subscription with free updates to two early volumes in digital format of Edmund Akenhead’s unique work, grids included, for The Tanganyika Standard (later East African Standard) between 4th June 1960 and 9th June 1962, some 93 Saturday crosswords all told. Feel free to join in. Tell your friends!
Meanwhile feel free to browse my News article and the stand I have chosen to take in support of fellow disadvantaged authors and artists worldwide.
I have reopened my free samples in my Library on this website especially my Games! and some choice crosswords! Enjoy!
My regular News editorials elaborate what is fair play for me and the late Barbara Hall MBE’s estate, speaking reams of earlier happier days, as Peter Brookes does with his wonderful regular cartoons in The Times – DA
Putin tells sleeper spies to trigger chaos in Kyiv
My comment in UK Times – 27th November 2023
My comment and feedback in Saturday’s UK Times (amended) – 25th November 2023
Posted extract and comment in The Times of Tuesday, 21st November concerning Lachlan Murdoch’s recent meeting with his entourage from Fox and News expressing solidarity to President Zelensky and his respect for Ukraine and the freedom of the Free World. Well done, Lachlan Murdoch you are a credit to your father, as I try to be to mine – DA
“The Ukrainian president commended Hall for his “outstanding” bravery. It was the first time Hall had returned to Ukraine since he lost both his feet, a leg and an eye in an attack outside Kyiv last year. During the meeting Zelensky dismissed critics questioning the grinding pace of the counteroffensive “For some reason, people treat it like a movie and expect that there will be no long pauses in the events, that the picture before their eyes will always change, that there will be some surprises every day,” he said.
“But for us, for our warriors, this is not a movie. These are our lives. This is daily hard work. And it will not be over as quickly as we would like, but we have no right to give up and we will not.”
“While in Kyiv, Murdoch also met Andriy Yermak, the head of Zelensky’s office, and laid flowers at the Wall of Remembrance, a site commemorating Ukrainian soldiers who have lost their lives in the conflict.”
Posted comment in The Times of Saturday, 4th November
I continue to offer my readership and my digital products on my increasingly popular website to HarperCollins gratis with a direct link to their website via mine and indeed recommend subscribing to TOL themselves! – DA
Finally, aside my token requests to restore my Jumbo royalties with whatever I am due, and my former title at The Times, I’d like to promote the Sun crossword titles again in digital format, as inventor of The Sun Computer Crosswords and long time Proofs Editor of their crossword books – DA
War has overnight become a luxury of the past and we need to think 21st century now. Only the combined brains of this world from every single nation can safeguard our increasingly fragile eco-structure. Our late Queen made a memorable start with her Commonwealth tree-planting initiative. In support of which, this too from the late great founder of our crossword, Adrian Bell:
The oldest profession? (9) GARDENING says it all really, that and celebrating our humanity through sport in all its noblest aspirations.
1 ac. In order of celebration, the ayes have it, it seems! (4,5,4,2) GOOD QUEEN BESS II
1 ac. Silvery-white Ode to Joy, 21st Century style! (8,7) PLATINUM JUBILEE
At the outbreak of World War 2, our beloved Queen Elizabeth was a 14 year old Princess along with her joie de vivre 11 year old sister, Princess Margaret,
both facing an uncertain life ahead but with a sense of duty and devotion to their country reflected in their father King George VI and their own broadcasts to the children in England separated from their families, rather similar to families in Ukraine today, conveying encouragement and hope; but young Elizabeth wanted to go further and by her 18th birthday had persuaded her father that she wished to join the ATS and do her bit for the war effort at their HQ in Aldershot near Windsor Castle.
So it was in autumn 1944 that she met my mother, Angela, and my godmother Stella Cody as she later became, who had both joined the service earlier, and who now acquainted Princess Elizabeth with the business of both driving and servicing Army ambulances, both already well aquainted with their nightly missions of tending in low visibility to the devastation, wounded and dying from London’s Blitz. Below pictures of my mother in 1940 as a young Corporal, after enlisting in the ATS on her 21st birthday, with a troupe of dedicated, selfless, quiet and truly heroic army girls and nurses, culminating in 1944 elevated to Captain, with Stella, by this time her staff sergeant i/c driving lessons, both charged with assisting the young princess in familiarising her and her vehicle with basic mechanics on the one hand, and manoeuvring it in blackout conditions, on the other, both of which she accomplished the following year with flying colours!
Also my father below, an RAF pilot and glider pilot in the newly formed AAC who she met in a pub in 1944 – promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, Edmund Akenhead TD by war end.
‘You can’t be a beacon if your light don’t shine. There’s a little light in all of us by God’s design’ Marty Cooper and Donna Fargo USA
Restoration of my late father, Edmund Akenhead’s Arms, pursuant to Queen Victoria’s Amnesty to landed Scottish families post Culloden (ours a Sept of Gordon) and graciously granted to my father and his descendants in perpetuity by Queen Elizabeth the Second and the College of Arms on the 31st October 1989.
Witness below, a handful of clues including our treasured national institution (apart from the tea!), namely our beloved Times crossword, stemming from its inception some ninety-three years ago! Remainder can be found in my new AZ Sketches by DA (courtesy of Boz!).
Her attachment to Poe makes her also write verse (4) TESS
Saw one of the team off then? (5) TENON
There’s no limit to what a sick kangaroo will do (9) BOUNDLESS
Unsuitable entertainment for Father’s Day? (3,8) POP FESTIVAL
Conference material? Impressive! (5) SATIN
What Peter Brookes renders to The Times in pictures, we cryptic wallahs attempt in words!
“Madam, I’m Adam” — the world’s first? (10) PALINDROME fits as does (4-2-4) CHAT-UP-LINE
Inevitable response to that, of course is:
Madam? EVE! (mad am!!) (5,8) CHAIN REACTION
I’d like to share this exchange I had in The Times today 25th July – my 77th birthday gift back to everybody! As my late father, Edmund Akenhead, used to say, ‘a practical demonstration is worth a pound of theory’ – Amen to that! – David Akenhead
Russian diver breaks two world records
Mr David Akenhead
7 HOURS AGO
As a child, African boys taught me how to hunt for pearls on the reef outside Dar es Salaam, Tanganyika, as it was then. It’s all about relaxation and gentle pressure. They tested my resolve by standing on me in shallow water on a sandy sea bed – if I wanted release, I just pulled one of their legs. My record was 4 minutes, aged 11, and I used to win all the competitions aboard ship, picking up spoons from the bottom of swimming pools, so no prizes for depth, although I’d say the reef was about twice the depth of a swimming pool at low tide, but great training for pearl fishing all the same! Once somebody dived into the pool because they thought I was drowning. I wasn’t of course, just behaving like a basking shark, that’s all. Slow but sure wins the race!
John Martin Mcghee
7 HOURS AGO
So, no pressure, then?
Mr David Akenhead
7 HOURS AGO
Replying to John Martin Mcghee
Minimised by your breathing technique before you dive. It’s an art form, trust me, mind over matter! Again, if you look at Alexey Molchanov’s feat, brilliant as it is, it is not what I would term free immersion! Surprise! the technique I used in preparation for my unsupported dives was very similar. That rope, weighed down on the sea bed by a heavy stone enables him to glide down to great depths with minimal pressure, as I experienced with my own lightweight counterweights! Experienced divers will know precisely what I’m talking about, I suggest!
Bowler seen at Dover – and at Boulogne (6)
Vma Nair a cricket authority in India, got it, and as I remarked to him, a bit tongue in cheek!
Top contributorToNaru MV I would have thought it was blindingly obvious, depending on your point of view and language! P.S. View from Dover commands one noun and that from Boulogne the other! (ask Debussy!) Together they make a seamer aka a seam bowler! Vma Nair will confirm! – to make the top table in our business, defer to Humpty Dumpty is my advice – cryptic clues and when I think of a word ‘should be just what I choose them to mean, neither more nor less!’ Médecins sans frontières!
Daily Visits to date over 1,000 (24 hours)
Tue 31st October 2023 1,504 – 1,196 from Israel
Tue 29th November 2022 1,481
Fri 21st April 2023 1,421
Tue 7th June 2022 1,282
Mon 17th April 2023 1,267
Sat 15th April 2023 1,265
Sun 16th April 2023 1,197
Fri 14th April 2023 1,156
Tue 18th April 2023 1,136
Sat 8th April 2023 1,125
Tue 28th March 2023 1,087
Wed 29th March 2023 1,066
Fri 7th April 2023 1,024
Wed 12th April 2023 1,004
Top 102 Countries (Locations) for 2023
1 United States 5,063
Russian Federation 863
3 China 697
Korea (the Republic of)
United Arab Emirates
Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of
Macedonia (the former Yugoslav Republic of)
|61||Moldova (the Republic of)|
|85||Tanzania, United Republic of|
|90||Bosnia and Herzegovina|
Palestine, State of
Interesting article by my father for Times News, the House Journal of Times Newspapers, February 1976 Edition where he indulges his readers in the mathematical intricacies of a Mastermind competition in which he was an entrant – father was very much into code-breaking in his War years, and as usual, a master of understatement. As a quiet multi-lingual RAF rudimentary test fighter pilot earlier, he also later flew light aircraft low at night under radar behind enemy lines. I only gleaned this information at the very end of his life in a 5 hour game of chess (which he eventually won instinctively on close to empty!) on enquiring about his TD when he brushed off landing his glider and troop plus jeep 50 miles behind enemy lines prior to the Rhine crossings as nothing much really, and in any case something he had done before at night and in a much lighter aircraft, a Lysander, in more challenging circumstances! The headline and the signature are adequate evidence of the veritas without any need for the interim RTP or QED!
23rd out of an original field of 800 plus, wasn’t bad going!
Looking on the bright side (and not new), Pimm’s No. 1 time in order! (8) OPTIMISM
Visitors / Visits
Total to date
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
David Akenhead, CEO Akenhead crosswords, 6th December, 2023