Whilst writing this piece, comfortably ensconced in my favourite corner of the pub, the door opened and a very familiar figure, accompanied by by a small person entered – it was Ian with elder daughter Ella; they came to see me and say hello before going off to the cinema. I am obviously getting extremely predictable in my weekend behaviour, as they knew exactly where to find me.
One thing I have discovered with Shepherd Neame Late Red best bitter, is that it has an unfortunate side - effect; especially if imbibed in the evening prior to bed. To put it bluntly, it makes you fart. I am currently doing a very accurate impression of a two stroke outboard motor on full throttle.
Something that I have recently noticed, is that very few school children seem to smoke nowadays. Whether it is that the health message has finally got through, or that the cost is now prohibitive is not the issue. They are just not smoking nowadays, and that has to be a good thing. Personally I think the main motivator is that they would rather spend their pocket money on credit for their ever present mobile telephones. I suppose it is a toss up health – wise as to whether it is preferable to croak from lung cancer (fags) or later on from a brain tumour (mobile phone). No doubt the debate will drag on ad infinitum.
I was travelling back to Erith on the 99 bus from my daily Dad visit, when I took the photos above. The bus abruptly slowed, then stopped in Woolwich Road, opposite the entrance to Abbey Wood. A car in front swerved to avoid an object in the road, which turned out to be a bird of prey. I am no twitcher or bird expert, but it looked like some kind of hawk. Perhaps a kind reader can inform me one way or another? Anyway, two blokes got out of a car in front and ventured over to the bird, standing in the middle of the carriage way and skillfully scooped it up into safety. I suspect that it was a tame bird that had escaped – it certainly had no fear of people. The two guys may well have been the bird's owners. I took the photos through the buses' front window; I have had to do some tweaking with Aperture 2 on my Apple iMac to restore the contrast lost through photographing though a pane of glass. All looking good enough now though. Click on any one of the shots above for a larger version.
I have noticed that an increasingly large number of people are lounging on public transport and putting their feet on the seats – something that really winds me up. I cannot recount the number of times I have got dirty marks or used chewing gum on my trousers due to the thoughtless actions of these scumbags. Knee capping with a chainsaw would be a suitable answer. I find that the type of person that acts in this way is quite usually the same as those that talk overly loudly on mobile telephones, and also play music out loud, from a mobile phone - something that is a major personal bugbear for me.
I had a bit of a trauma on Sunday night, just prior to the start of Steve's pre MBE party. His wife Jenny got a call on her mobile phone from a couple of party goers who were asking for directions to the Robin Hood and Little John. Jenny handed her phone to me, as party organiser – apparently I visibly shied away from the infernal device as she moved to hand it to me. Personally I cannot recall this, but I certainly would not discount it.
Also, do check out Thore's Blog. Until recently I worked with him; he's now moved onwards and upwards. All good, slightly surreal stuff anyway.
Here is a video clip of what I believe is the largest model aircraft in the world - a scale model of an American B52 heavy bomber; this is it in action during a UK model plane demonstration.