Festival Fever!

Caw blimey gov I’m dead excited about life! It’s just great, oh, except for when it involves inflamed tendons in one’s right arm, a result of spending 5 hours trying to fix a glitch in a wee website I know called TGW. That was two days ago. My own silly fault, I didn’t take any […]

my homemade stone staircase

Tame Staircases – No job too small! Authentic Ye Olde Stone Staircases created for any location, although ideally suited to somewhere that has an up and a down. Rock solid through and through, using recycled materials from start to finish. Railings also available for oldies. Guaranteed for first 500 uses. COMING SOON: Pedal-Powered Stone Escalator. […]

one big bundle of emotion

I’ve got my soundtrack to the gardening down to a fine art now. Every night I create a playlist for my iPod for the following day. I use three sources: podcasts downloaded from the likes of the BBC, TWiT.TV, Guardian Unlimited, New Scientist; my second source is a collection of self-development seminar things that get […]

I never thought I’d see the day

McDonald’s joins fight to save the Amazon Take your hand off the mouse. Now reach over your shoulder, and pat yourself on the back. Because you did it. The mighty McDonald’s jumped when you objected to their role in Amazon destruction. After only a few months of being in the spotlight over rainforest destruction, and […]

Mr. Posty is my friend

Look what Mr. Posty delivered this morning! technorati tags: Japan | visa | Daily Mumble

SEAS Graduates

“The bound-up brains of the St. Bernhard dog are held in equilibriam in the middle of the boulevard” Who’d have thought that repeating phrases such as that above would help you learn the Kanji… 950 down, 1092 to go. I heard yesterday that from my entire department (the School of East Asian Studies, encompassing Japanese, […]

The pain of wasp stings and visa applications

I was out in the garden by 7am again today. With Europe in the grips of a heat wave it’s the only way to survive long hours toiling away with a mattock and some huge great lumps of stone, part of the latest set of steps I have been commisioned to create on the Welsh […]

Such a damn hypocrite

The Independent, 22 July 2006 America’s domestic policy vs America’s foreign policy This week, George Bush used his presidential veto to block a bill on stem cell research, saying he couldn’t support the ‘taking of innocent human life’. In Iraq, six civilians are killed by a US air strike, while casualties in Lebanon and Israel […]

Human Traffic

Upon arrival in Japan these days, you may well be the recipient of a litle slip of paper stating, in several asian and south-american languages, “If you are a victim of human traficking please show this piece of paper to any Japanese person”. Then, in Japanese, it reads, “HELP! I am a victim of Human […]

A walk in the peaks

Caw blimey gov it’s so bloomin hot. I’m staying in *Twinkle’s* student flat, coincidentally the same place I lived in year before last. I’d forgotten just how hot the place gets. The window faces sort-of-south, and the curtains are lined with black felty stuff. Great for keeping the light out, but also great for absorbing […]

Stop Look Listen

Yesterday, *Twinkle* and I took the cross-country route from Hope station to Castleton, situated in the peak district. A mile or so into our ramble we came across the West Coast Main Line. Being but a footpath, there were no barriers or flashing lights to warn us when a train was coming, just a notice, […]

True love is…

…feeling like this after 50 years of marriage (many thanks to the unwitting couple we found ourselves tailing in Castleton yesterday, whoever they may be) technorati tags: true love | Daily Mumble

ichirinsha

technorati tags: wheelbarrrow | Daily Mumble

leaving, on a Virgin train

I’m off on a day trip for the next week or so. I’ll be going from here to Sheffield by Virgin, in order for *Twinkle* and I to make up for lost time, and hopefully get out into the Peak District which I have managed to avoid thus far despite having been wanting to go […]

The Old Goat and the Pogo Stick

Last weekend I was fortunate enough to be in the UK when my two best friends Jo and Catherine (whose middle name is Joanne), and Jo’s boyfriend Joe (I kid you not) decided to have their birthdays. Usually, they time their annual exploits to coincide with me not being here. Happily, this year, Joseph’s in […]

lovely people …and exam results

JJ’s funeral (see previous entry) brought together a lovely group of people, many of whom I’ve had the opportunity to meet before now thanks to JJ; others, I knew in name, having heard great tales of their epic achivements. This was also recipricated, with a few people (strangers up until then) approaching me and commenting […]

Free to fly

Yesterday saw John John’s body laid to rest in a woven bamboo coffin, in a quiet meadow in the Buckinghamshire countryside. The funeral was a simple affair, arranged by the Quakers, good friends of John John who have been wonderful in providing immense support for both him and all of us who knew him in […]

a mixed bag

It’s been 6 days now since John John started out on his next intergalatic adventure, no doubt camera in hand. Since I heard the news that he had left us on planet Earth for places where one can travel without having to buy his favourite kind of ticket (that being the round-the-world airline type), I’ve […]

a soul moves on

A month and a day ago I wrote about dear John John. I had just received a phone call from a family friend telling me that JJ was not at all well; he had just been diagnosed with terminal cancer. This came pretty much out of the blue, a month or two previously he’s been […]