Saturday 28 September 2013

In a Rush

I have to make a really big decision.  For me anyway.  When we picked up The Cat and The Boy from their Scottish sojourn, I stopped in a loading bay marked on the road by Kings Cross on the basis that I had to load their suitcases into the back of the car.  Transport for London have issued me with a penalty.  I think I'm right.  I really do.  Normally I would have fought it tooth and nail.  But, I wonder if it's worth the effort. Is it worth the aggravation.  Is it worth feeling justified if I win, ir aggrieved if I don't.  For once I have hesitated. that's not like me, perhaps I'm mellowing.

I got caught by a 'phishing' e-mail this morning.  First time ever.  I knew it would happen one day.  It was from Virgin Media and was my monthly statement it said.  Stupid me.  The Boy has a Virgin mobile account, not Virgin Media.  Anyway, the anti-virus software went mad, and probably saved everything.  I must be getting soft.

I see that Chessington World of Adventures/zoo/safari park has decided to ban anyone from Essex.  No, it's not their fecking accents that's amiss, nor their orange suntans.  The Park has banned anyone from wearing leopard spots, zebra stripes or anything which resembles an animal skin.  As you will know, this is de rigeur in Essex.  It's not on the grounds that such wear might offend the animals, nor on the grounds that it offends most people too, it is simply that wearing animal prints confuses the animals.  And to illustrate the point, the BBC used a photo showing a man wearing a tiger print onesie crawling through the long grass....which was even more baffling on a number of levels.

As some guessed, The Boy did crunch the car whilst we were away.  Not through driving like a lunatic after many beers, but driving slowly out of his grandmother's drive and not seeing the pillar as he turned.  He'd safely navigated all the way from Essex to Wales by himself, and indeed managed the drive home as well round the busy, roadwork and traffic-jam infested M25 and M4, so to have done that was heartbreaking for him...especially as Grandma in Wales was watching.  Poor lad...but then we've all done it (well I have anyway).  It'll be a hefty bill, but I suspect not worth claiming for.  Ironically, The Cat managed to get a ripple of dents on the other side of the car not long after she passed her test (although she denies it), but because they're quite shallow they've been left.  It's the luck of the draw I guess.

As The Boy is being deserted by all his friends as they head off to university and he works until he heads off to the slopes of Kitzbuhel, it's given me an opportunity to have some Boys nights out with him.  I'm rather enjoying it.  Last night we headed off to the cinema to see Rush, the James Hunt/Nikki Lauder biopic. Obviously there's fast noisy cars in it and the women are nothing more than decorative sex objects.  But if you can (and indeed you should), this is a brilliant film.  The acting is terrific, the characterisation just manages to stay away from caricature, the cinematography remarkable, and the human story of the rivalry between Hunt and Lauder fascinating.  Obviously we all know the outcomes..both the winning of the World Championship, and Hunt's early demise, but that doesn't stop it being a totally engaging experience.  Very highly recommended indeed.

Thursday 26 September 2013

In Istanbul

I could write a long post about this wonderful city, and how I surprised our American friends by dressing up as a very grumpy chauffeur at the airport, but instead I'll just show you some of my favourite pictures

 The very wonderful Chora

 No wonder they look nervous...circumcision room
 The Cystern..very, very calming

 A few AK 47s seen around

 Does the bridge spoil their view do you think?

 Really he had two legs...

 Famous steps to Taksim Square

 Some craft were more unexpected than others

Tuesday 24 September 2013

Not in Istanbul

You can't help but like Boris can you?  The man who single-handedly created the bicycle and organised the London Olympics.

I can't help but think I wouldn't let him organise a chimpanzees tea party, but there's no doubting his chutzpah.

We were lucky enough to be invited to the opening reception of the 'Pearls' exhibition at the V&A last week. I have never, ever, ever seen so many security guards and police in one small space.  I guess the several tons of pearls on display may be worth a pretty penny.  I assume the assembled beautiful people were mostly pretty wealthy too.  They smelled of money for sure.  The evening was opened by one of the Qatar royal family, and she was then followed by Boris.  He is without doubt a truly amusing orator.  Clever with it too. The audience was enraptured.  I'd recommend an evening with him any day.  As for the exhibition, it's absolutely fascinating...we couldn't stay long which was a shame, so we may well go back.  But there's a fascinating history to pearls, and some remarkable pieces of jewellery to see....and then I'd suggest exploring the rest of the V&A which must be one of the best museums anywhere in the world (plus it has an awfully nice cafe).

We abandoned The Boy for a few days whilst we jetted off to Istanbul. Well he's a big lad now, and he's not going to do anything like pranging the car in our absence is he?