Fury goes mining!

I had a day out! Humans said I might like this place.


First place we went, we met a rat. Not a ratvaark, just a rat. He was very polite and welcomed me to the museum. Upstairs in the miner’s cottage, I found a nice chair to sit on.

Anyway, we were soon outside again, and there was plenty of machinery to look at!

Here’s a game. Spot Fury! Can you see me? Here I am!

For a minute I thought the humans said there was a buffet, but it wasn’t, it was buffers!

“No unauthorised person…” Well, I’m not a person, am I. Can I have a go?

This winding gear used to be owned by a famous man called Fred Dibnah, and he had it in his garden!

Look at this bucket! It’s HUGE! Imagine it filled with popcorn…

I had a ride on this sculpture of a pit pony. Imagine being a pony working down a mine, poor thing.

Ooh, I like this little crane. I could use that. I wonder what it’s called? Oh. Yeah, very funny.

There was an exhibition with information about how coal forms, and some nice little models.

And here’s that winding tower for real! It’s so tall!

It’s that game again! Can you spot me?

I found a little loco I could drive, I reckon. But the wagon behind it had a pond in it! And then I found a wagon being used to grow vegetables in!

Inside the old Engine House, we saw the big engine that wound the lifts up and down into the mine, how they recharged their helmet lamps, and I found some really decent spanners!


I also met a couple of canaries. They took them down into the mine, and if there was dangerous gas, the birds fell unconscious. But don’t worry, they would take them back out and give them oxygen to revive them!

After all this walking about, we decided it was time for a quick cuppa and a little snack.

Hello, where am I now? Aha! We’re going on a train ride! I have to be careful to keep my head, hands, arms, feet and legs inside the carriage. Well, if I had any hands, arms, feet or legs…

Anyway, it was a fun ride!

So, all in all, I had a great afternoon!

Jumping the hurdles….

Time for our final sporting event – the hurdles! We’ve got four athletes lined up, and Ofelia is acting as starter. On your marks…

Fury, Nano, Ernest and Winston are lined up on a track, with a hurdle in each lane. Nano’s hurdle is tiny compared with the others. Ofelia has a white flag

Get set…

the four vaarks are crouched forwards ready to go


Ofelia has dropped the flag and the vaarks set off running

Oh dear! Ernest’s tripped over his own snozzle!

Ernest lies on the track with his snozzle under him

They’re approaching the hurdle…

the vaarks are nearly at the hurdle

Whoops! Winston’s tripped on his hurdle!

Winston has run into his hurdle which has fallen over

Fury is over safely! Nano is racing along behind… Now he’s over safely too.

fury has cleared her hurdle, Nano is coming up to his

Nano has cleared his hurdle

Close to the line, it looks like Fury might win! Hang on! How did Nano move so fast!?

fury and nano approach the finish

Nano has shot forward over the line first

Oh Ernest! You’re not supposed to help him!

Nano is revealed to be sitting on the end of Ernest’s snozzle, stretched out to get him over the line

Well, that’s tricky. There’ll have to be a steward’s enquiry. But after a bit of a chat, everyone agrees Fury won, but Ernest was just being kind. Ofelia suggests that they all settle down to a snack or two.

All the runners and ofelia discuss the result

Ofelia produces a couple of plates of doughnuts to share


It’s Archery today. Um, Dim, I don’t think that’s the right sort of bow? Oh, I see you’re just providing some background music, that’s unusual.

Dim has a violin and bow, standing by an archery targetdim plays the violin

So, Fury favours the traditional longbow. Let’s see how she does.

fury has a long bow and three arrowsfury aims at the target

Oh, that’s pretty good Fury, just the edge of a bullseye there!

Fury has one arrow on the outer ring, and a couple on the edge of the bullseye

Now it’s Vincent’s turn. He has one of the modern fancy bows with counterweights and stuff.

Vincent has a bow with lots of add ons and three arrowsvincent aims at the target

Oh, I say! Three bulls! Well done!

vincent has three arrows in the bulls eye

Now Matilda wants a go, but she says the normal target colours are too bright and give her a headache, so she’s brought her own in pastel colours.

Matilda has changed the target to one in on light colours

Fury wonders what sort of bow Matilda is going to use? Oh. Um, I don’t think Matilda has ever done archery before…

Fury talks to Matilda

Matilda has produced a large shiny parcel bow

En garde!

Our first Olympic sport today is Fencing! Bernard is all ready, in his special jacket, just waiting for his opponent to arrive.

bernard wears a white jacket, connected to a box with a light on it, and has a mask and fencing sword

Hello, here’s Fury. Um, Fury, what’s with all the wood and tools?

fury has a pile of planks, a hammer and a saw

No, Fury, you’ve got it wrong, explains Bernard, it’s the sport, not making a fence!

Bernard talks to Fury

Right, now that misunderstanding is cleared up, Fury can get into her gear. Ok? Masks on, both of you!

Fury now wears a jacket like Bernard’s

Fury and bernard both have their masks on

And the match starts! Lots of thrusts and parries, back and forth.

Fury makes a thrust at Bernard with her sword

Bernard thrusts back and Fury parries with her sword

Fury thrusts again and Bernard leans back to avoid the sword tip

A hit! Well done Bernard!

Bernard’s sword makes contact with Fury’s jacket, and her light lights up

And so, they finish with a bow, and Bernard is the winner. Congratulations!

Bernard and Fury remove their masks and bow

Bernard stand in his jacket, mask by his side

Advaark 2020 Day 23: Making wood work.

Fury and Bernard are going to have a go at some woodwork today! They’ve got Fury’s tools, and a selection of timber.

Fury and Bernard have tools and sticks of timber and a sheet of wood

Bernard is eyeing up this sheet of timber, I wonder what he’ll make?

Bernard looks at the sheet of wood

Fury is getting busy sawing up some sticks, she’s clearly got a project in mind.

Fury is sawing a stick with a big saw.

There! Fury has made some rustic crates – ideal for storing vegetables in, or to make up as a hamper maybe.

Fury has a couple of simple wooden crates.

And Bernard… Gosh! That chest of drawers is amazing. We never knew you were so talented Bernard!

Bernard has made a polished mahogany chest of drawers

Advaark 2020 Day 21: Silly string!

We’re going to have a go at some string art today! We’ve got string, pins, and a template. We’re going to stick them into a piece of balsa, painted black. You could use corrugated card, or polystyrene.

Fury, Ratvaark and Nano have gathered all the stuff together.

First thing to do is to lay the template on the wood, and put pins, or nails, in round the edge. We’re putting one at each corner and a few inbetween. Fury’s got her big hammer to tap them in with.

The vaarks lay a paper star on the wood and put pins at the corners

Fury taps the pins in with her big hammer

Now, Nano is going to take the thread and go for a walk in and out of the pins! He goes all round the edge first, then back and forwards to fill in with a random pattern.

Nano has the gold thread round his middle and is taking it round the pinsThe thread has gone all round the edge of the star

Nano has filled in the shape with random threads.

Now Nano, you can pick it up. What? It’s too heavy? It can’t be, it’s only balsa!

Fury and Ratvaark look on as Nano tries to lift the piece.

Oh Fury! I think you’ve nailed it to the floor!

Ratvaark looks at Fury

Advaark 2020 Day 7: A box of delights!

Fury and I are going to make up a hamper! Hampers are lovely gifts because everyone likes a treat!

ratvaark and fury pose with a basket and lots of foodstuffs.

It’s a good idea to put some shredded paper in the basket, to nestle things into. Here’s some chocolate coins, and a nice pot of homemade jam.

Fury sits on a pile of shredded paper in the basket

the vaarks put a bag of chocolate coins and a jar of jam into the shredded paper

Now, here’s a problem. Make sure the things you want to put in the basket aren’t bigger than the basket!

fury looks on as ratvaark tries to fit a packet of fancy biscuits that’s too long for the basket

Fury sits on a bar of chocolate balanced on top of the biscuits, all too big for the basket

What’s that Fury, you’ve got an idea?

Fury looks down and talks to ratvaark

Well, Fury is right. A basket is a very nice and useful present on its own! We’ll just tidy up this other stuff…

fury and ratvaark eat the chocolate coins next to an empty basket

What’s Winston up to?

Oh, hello! Here’s Winston, Vincent and Fury having a meeting. I wonder if it’s about Winston’s new business venture?

Ratvaark spots Winston Vincent and Fury having a meeting. They have papers, and a flip chart that says Stock plus Premises , Launch and Profit.

Hello you lot. What are you talking about?

Ratvaark speaks to the three, who look at him

Not saying? Oh! It’s a secret? Well!

The three sit on their papers to hide the contents

I’ll leave them to it then. Unless…

Ratvaark leaves them to talk

Perhaps I can hear what they’re saying from here.

As the three talk, Ratvaark tries to listen in from a distance

*Nonchalant whistling*

It’s no good, I’m not going to find anything out. I’ll just have to wait and see!

The three look at Ratvaark as he whistles with his nose in the air.

Fury’s Big Bang!

Fury says:

I was outside, servicing me truck earlier, when Winston came by, He said he’d got something I might be interested in…

Cor! Look at the size of that rocket! I’ve gotta have that to let off tomorrow night! Imagine lighting that blue touchpaper!

So me and Winston negotiated a price and the deal was done.

Fury gives Winston a wrapped biscuit

Everyone who came by was very excited about the prospect of such a big rocket.

Several other vaarks are admiring the rocket

Oh heck, Arnold’s coming! Quick, stand in front of it, he’ll have a fit!

Fury looks off to one side, worried

What’s that Arnold? Nah, we’re just hanging out, you know. Nothing goin’ on.

Arnold looks suspicious as the vaarks line up to try and hide the rocket

Drat, he’s spotted it….

Arnold spots the rocket and his ears fly up.

Well, he’s given us all a lecture on the dangers of fireworks and then he’s only gone and confiscated it!

I’ll have to get me biscuit back off Winston… Winston! Come back ‘ere!

Fury looks for Winston who is disappearing off out of shot.

Fury escapes a frock!

Matilda called Fury, Esther and Ofelia into our lounge to show them the material she’s chosen for the bridesmaid dresses!

Esther, Fury and Ofelia look at some pale green fabric on the table in front of Matilda

Fury said, could she have a word? Only, that’s really not her colour, in fact she’s not keen on frocks generally. She thinks she can find something more useful to do than be a bridesmaid.

Fury has a word in Matilda’s ear

Matilda said that was fair enough, so Fury scooted off, and left them admiring the silky feel of the cloth.

Esther feels the fabric draped over her snozzle as Matilda and Ofelia admire it.