I had a great evening last night. I went out for a drink and a curry in Upper Belvedere with Ian, Shelley and Mark (otherwise known as Mini David Coverdale - pictured above trying to stick his tongue in my ear - no, don't ask!) First we popped into the Fox (my old local, sadly down at heel and not that nice any more); we also went to the Victoria, a small backstreet pub that I have not tried in literally years. What a nice place - friendly and not smoky. They have managed to get into the new Good Beer guide and had Adnam's Best and Shepherd Neame Spitfire on draught. I'll definitely be going back there soon. Mark suggested that we went for a curry and we ended up in the Belvedere Tandoori; now much better than I recall of old.
Ian has suggested that I rate my rants by degree of severity - going say from "mildly miffed", through "hacked off" and eventually ending up with "incandescent with rage". Sounds like a good idea to me.
The Health and Safety secret police have been at it with a vengeance; we have been told by the Nursing Sister at Dad's nursing home that we are no longer allowed to go into the kitchen to make a cup of tea. Apparently we are a Health Hazard. The fact that we have been doing this every single day for the past year seems to count for nothing. I would guess that BUPA, along with so many UK organisations are getting paranoid about spurious insurance claims. Personally I cannot abide the weak, milky tea that the tea lady brings around. Tea for me should be very strong and with only a hint of milk (just like with a classic vodka Martini, where it is said that the vermouth bottle merely needs to be in the same room). Another nail in the coffin of liberty and personal freedom.
Kids travelling free on Greater London buses. We have comrade Ken of the People's Socialist Republic of Londonistan to blame for this poorly considered and divisive decision. What happens now is that the little gits flag down the bus, travel one or two stops then jump off - usually after having scratched graffiti on the windows, rubbed dog poo on the seats - or worse . Why should those people who have paid their hard earned cash, or pensioners with travel passes have to put up with the verminous little scrotes who should be walking or cycling, as they seem to get very little exercise other than causing vandalism and other mayhem, taking up seats and standing space? To their credit, I have witnessed a few bus drivers deliberately not stopping for groups of teenage pond life; after all, what is the point when he won't be taking any money and chances are they will damage the bus or hassle the other passengers anyway? Reintroduce travel warrants for kids who genuinely have to travel to distant schools (and only valid for journeys on that specific bus route during term time) and make it clear that any abuse of the privilege will result in the removal of the warrant, and the full cost being charged to the parent(s).
I am currently listening to Dave Martin on the excellent free radio station WNKR on 1395 KHz medium wave. Good station and interesting presenters; do give it a try.